“Beneath that cerebral, taciturn exterior, however, one detects an insecure, hapless control freak, quick to sulk when he doesn’t get his way, shy, awkward, and deeply repressed.”
By Michael Harris, ipolitics, Jan 15, 2015
“In politics, as in baseball, the rule is simple: Three strikes and you’re out.
Strike one against this government of oligarchs and corporate shills comes down to this: They have greedily championed oil and gas while doing nothing to protect air and water.
… Green Party Leader Elizabeth May put it pretty well too: “In Bill C-38, Stephen Harper cancelled and gutted environmental laws brought in by Brian Mulroney. He’s now moved on to destroy environmental law brought in by Sir John A. MacDonald.”
And who gave the Conservatives the blueprint for gutting the Navigable Waters Protection Act? The pipeline industry.
The Conservatives have ignored the great issue of the age — the environment — and have offered instead a robber-baron vision of Canada built on unsustainable development and inflated oil prices. The lion’s share of the benefits have gone to foreign corporations and speculators.
How badly has he betrayed the environment? …He has transformed Environment Canada into just another oilpatch stooge, violating the purpose for which it was created.
…this is the guy who didn’t mind selling asbestos to other countries when it was being treated as a deadly carcinogen here in Canada.
Strike two against Stephen Harper is his personal failure to give Canadians a more open, ethical and democratic government. That is, after all, what got him elected in 2006 (that and a little cheating during the campaign).
The real man has muzzled his own workers — even demanding loyalty oaths from them [remind anyone of Trump?]. He wanted the right to ask prospective government employees about their politics.
What’s strike three? Canada is not Harperland. Stephen Harper is not who we are.
Canadians don’t want to see medicare slowly reduced to a ghost of its former self by a prime minister who once headed an organization created to destroy it.
Stephen Harper will definitely come out swinging when he comes to the plate. He will drag out the usual mantra to continue his reign of error — that only Steve can protect us from terrorists, only Steve can protect us from recession, and only Steve has the stuff of leadership.” [Donald Trump’s playbook]
To understand Harper’s American Republicanism, you need to understand where it came from.
It’s also a story about racism and backstabbing. “The new Conservative Party has tasted success and wants majority rule. If Tom Flanagan and his Calgary School have their way, they’ll get it without compromising their principles”
Born in the Burbs. Stephen Harper explained
“Beneath that cerebral, taciturn exterior, however, one detects an insecure, hapless control freak, quick to sulk when he doesn’t get his way, shy, awkward, and deeply repressed.
2019: Stephen Harper Heads a Global Org That Helps Get Right-Wing Parties Elected. What Will It Do for Andrew Scheer?
Voter suppression works. Ask the Kochs, Trump and our very own robocall fakers.
“The Conservative Party of Canada is closely aligned with the U.S. Republican Party, and both are closely associated with the International Democratic Union.”
He is a head of government who doesn’t trust government, a national leader who doesn’t believe in national leadership, a man of the people who doesn’t care for people.”
EXCERPTS: “Much of his [Preston Manning] advice amounted to spin control: ditch the God talk and avoid the temptation to play holier-than-thou. “You have to advocate righteousness,” he said, “without appearing self-righteous.”
“… [Charles] McVety rages. “The false religion is the worship of Mother Earth—I call them earthies!” He dismisses Rio’s Earth Charter as “that pagan document.”
Did those same views colour Stephen Harper’s decision to bow out of the Kyoto Protocol? Have Harper’s private spiritual impulses as an evangelical shaped any of his policy decisions, whether on child care or boosting the defence budget and backing Israel unequivocally in the Middle East? The answer isn’t clear, nor may it ever be. Not only is Harper notoriously guarded about his motivations, but many of the items on his agenda that have won the applause of the religious right in Canada so far have coincided with the demands of other more traditional groups in the expanding tent of his new Conservative coalition.”
How an apocalyptic strain of Christianity guides his policies and campaigning.
EXCERPTS: ” It’s well documented that in a 1996 speech in Calgary Harper outlined how he would unite social conservatives and evangelicals by choosing issues carefully and implementing real change incrementally. This alliance would include Canada’s Jewish community. In 2003 he reiterated this agenda, calling members of the new alliance “theo-cons.”
For starters, Christianity Today pegged Harper as “The Smartest Evangelical Politician You Never Heard Of” in 2006.”
Signs mount that Canada’s government is beholden to a religious agenda averse to science and rational debate.
EXCERPTS: Almost daily, more evidence surfaces that Canada’s government is guided by tribalists averse to scientific reason in favour of Biblical fundamentalism — or what some call “evangelical religious skepticism.”
Unknown to most Canadians, the prime minister belongs to the Christian and Missionary Alliance, an evangelical Protestant church with two million members. Alberta, a petro state, is one of its great strongholds on the continent. The church believes that the free market is divinely inspired and that non-believers are “lost.””
Andrew Scheer may be on the ballot in 2019 but it’s about social conservatism, the destruction of democracy, our institutions, and the gutting of our social fabric that comes with Conservative authoritarianism.
“Scheer’s provincial friends are dismantling public services at a rapid pace. Look no further than Ontario where the Ford government has attacked everything from services for children with autism to public health care to education, firing 3,000 teachers.”
“Before he was prime minister, Harper railed against the liberalism of the civil service, and Trinity Western is not alone in attempting to help him reverse that tilt. More than a dozen well-regarded Christian colleges and universities now exist in this country, and the Conservatives are quietly fostering their growth. When economic stimulus funds were being doled out, Harper funneled more than $26 million their way, including $2.6 million to Trinity Western — a windfall that was announced by Conservative MP Mark Warawa, a TWU alumnus himself.”
THE HARPER SHIFT
The Harper Shift looks at how Canada has changed over 10 years of Conservative government – and at what kind of country we want to become.
- Austerity’s vicious circle
- Harper’s economic record the worst in Canada’s postwar history
- A backwards decade on foreign aid
- Tories will leave lethal legacy for First Nations
- Harper’s foreign policy: all war, no diplomacy
- We closed our doors to the world
- How we created a Canadian prison crisis
- Canada is no country for vulnerable wildlife
- The fraying of Canada’s social fabric
This book, which builds on the 2008 collection The Harper Record, continues a 25-year tradition at the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
“It’s a matter of serious debate whether the Harper government’s work can be undone, or whether he has created a new normal in the country’s public life.”
“It is no accident that Canadian politics has been infected with Republican tactics ….”
“The lasting impact of Stephen Harper’s time in public life will be a diminished Parliament, toxic politics, and a compromised electoral system that will make every citizen smaller … the legacy of tyrants.”
” The decisions are so secret that they are kept in a safe, separate from other orders-in-council — and cabinet ministers are only briefed on them in rooms without wireless devices. “
Why the sudden ratification of FIPA is sparking startled outrage across Canada.
““Ottawa capitulated to China on everything. The deal, using a hockey metaphor, allows only a select few to play on Team Canada on a small patch of ice in China and to be fouled, without remedies or referees. By contrast, Team China can play anywhere on Canadian ice, can appeal referee calls it dislikes and negotiate compensation for damages while in the penalty box behind closed doors.”