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Kamloops News

LOEWEN: Canada's not a nation of “scared rabbits”

Image Credit: Compilation/Jennifer Stahn
April 29, 2015 - 7:49 AM

Anti-democratic, authoritarian and autocratic. Back-stabbing, brow-beating and bullying. Churlish, corrupt and cryptic. Devious, dictatorial and divisive. Egregious and erroneous.

Fear-mongering, flawed and fraudulent. Grandiose, grudge-bearing and guileful. Haughty, hectoring and hypocritical. Ill-advised, imperious and invasive. Janus-faced and kleptocratic.

Labour-bashing, labyrinthine and lachrymose. Mendacious, militaristic and misguided. Nasty, nefarious, and negligent. Obfuscatory, obscurantist and opaque.

Paranoid, perfidious and posturing. Quarrelsome, querulous and quixotic. Racist, retrograde and reprehensible. Shady, swindling and supercilious.

Thuggish, tormenting and totalitarian. Undemocratic, underhanded and unsympathetic. Vainglorious, venal and visionless. Warped, wasteful and wrong-headed.

Xenophobic, Yankee-loving, zealous and zipper-lipped.

Quite the litany of adjectives, the reader might think. One might be forgiven for thinking I am describing a super-villain from a blockbuster Hollywood movie.

But I am not.

I’m reiterating adjectives that have been aimed at describing the current Canadian Prime Minister, Stephen Harper, and his particular, peculiar style of governance by scores of journalists, former parliamentarians, public intellectuals, strategists, and political pundits over the course of the last several years.

PM Harper has turned out to be quite the teacher for those of us pupils that have been paying attention to his schooling. He has inspired in would-be wordsmiths an exponential explosion in novel ways to more accurately describe his example.

Under PM Harper’s dubious pedagogy we are all becoming Poets of Canadian Democracy’s Putrefaction. The man has taught us a new version of our ABCs. And we should be grateful for it, in an every-cloud-has-a-silver-lining kinda’ way.

But we’re not.

We’d rather be writing laudatory paeans to a leader and a government that is doing everything in its power to protect its citizens from corporate and governmental voyeuristic peepings into our personal affairs.

We’d rather be applauding a government that sets high standards in research and development; a government that jealously protects the amazing natural inheritance that is a country like Canada.

We would much rather be challenging the government to set even higher standards domestically and internationally than we have known in the 20th century.

Instead we are stunned by the federal government’s deafening silence to our questions and concerns.

We are horrified week-after-blessed-week by the revelations of graft, greed and incompetence at virtually every level of federal governance.

And we are doubly-horrified when PM Stephen Harper seems to want to take absolutely zero responsibility for aspects of its shameful behaviour. PM Harper is always the first to throw those once-held closest to his interests under the bus  as soon as they are revealed to be politically counter-productive to his personal and party interests.

Because that’s what it’s all about, folks. Preserving the power at any cost at all.

Damn ethics. Damn criticisms from within the Conservative Party of Canada and from without.

Just keep cynically plugging away at the fear-mongering and the spreading of serial falsehoods until the electorate begins to believe in a warped depiction of the world. And try to convince them all that only another CPC government can hold the course for Canada through the inevitably rocky and fearful terrain ahead.

It would appear that PM Stephen Harper is right to do so -- at least as this strategy pertains to holding power within his own caucus of scared rabbits.

Constituents from coast-to-coast-to-coast should be up in arms at the cowardly enabling that Conservative Party of Canada Members of Parliament have demonstrated in blind allegiance to their erstwhile party head, Stephen Harper. He has whipped them into submission from the very beginning; and he has been relentless at keeping them all on an extraordinarily short leash.

It must be very disheartening for these Conservative MPs to be so stymied and emasculated that they are afraid to air their opinions candidly and openly without fear of party reprisals.

Calling out MP Dan Albas, MP Ron CannanMP Colin Mayes, and MP Cathy McLeod: Do you hear us?

I’m here to tell you (aping the cries of Harper-critic Michael Harris) that many of us are assuredly not scared rabbits. We will stand firm throughout your multi-million dollar spending of our tax dollars to spread marketing manure over billboards, radio, TV and the internet from today until election day. And we’ll call it what we all know it is: shite.

Sure the scared rabbits will scurry to the polling stations to check the box for the CPC and their autocrat-of-choice, Stephen Harper. The Okanagan Valley, the Simikameen and the Thompson-Nicola ridings have historically been full of scared rabbits running after retrograde politicians. But their numbers are diminishing.

The rest of us are driving a soul train of sorts, a vehicle of hope in the future. We’re looking forward to the battle to come, for the tribulation that will see the Cons gone, daddy, gone — if only to attempt to restore our country’s parliamentary traditions that have been so maliciously transfigured under the Harperian handling of our institutions.

As another prophetic voice once sang:

“Here comes the conman

Coming with his con plan

We won't take no bribe

We got to stay alive

We gonna chase those crazy

Chase those crazy baldheads

Chase those crazy

Baldheads out of town.”

Bob Marley, “Crazy Baldhead"

— Jeffrey Loewen is a Kelowna-based writer who plays music by day and politics by night.

News from © iNFOnews, 2015

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