Stephen Harper has no reason to quit while he’s ahead

Colby Cosh on the rumours out of Ottawa

Stan Behal/QMI Agency/Zuma/Key Stone Press

They’ll be right eventually. Even as 2013 ended in a sighing consensus that Stephen Harper’s resignation is probably not imminent after all, a few political millenarians continued to insist—in the face of increasingly flat personal denials—that the Prime Minister is sick of the big job and ready to repair to a little house with a white picket fence. The latest example comes from Charlie Smith of the Georgia Straight, who observes that Harper has a past as a “quitter.” A quarter-century ago, you see, he quit Progressive Conservative staff work to become an opposition MP, then quit that job to head a think tank, then quit again to become a party leader.

In case it needs pointing out, the obvious problem with this interpretation is that Harper “quit” worse jobs for better ones pretty much every time. This sort of thing is more typically characterized as ambition than cowardice. But that’s the upside-down analysis Stephen Harper’s enigmatic character invites. More serious commentators spent 2013 playing similar games, on no better evidence. Harper was supposed to retire in the spring, then the summer, then for sure in the fall; based on my understanding of Last Days cults, I expect someone to claim any minute now that Harper actually has already retired in some nuanced, invisible way.

Two forms of wishful thinking are at work here, and are mutually interacting: the cravings of Harper’s enemies, and the interest of reporters in good copy. It is easy to believe that Harper has become a problem for the Conservative party if you spend time around people who see him as an insurmountably incurious, science-smashing, arts-ravaging brute who will not stop until he has strangled the planet for the last of its precious black lifeblood. But Conservative workers and contributors have self-evidently not yet lost faith.

A few of them are growing frustrated with the categorical abortion truce he has imposed on his caucus, and see hope in Jason Kenney, whose activity in recruiting ethnic minorities to the party is attracting increasing attention. Kenney might already be the most influential Canadian politician of the past 20 years, not excluding Harper. Canadian Taxpayers Federation jobs are still seen as attractive largely because Kenney, by some miracle, actually managed to influence policy in Alberta when he had one. His tending of minorities seems superhuman. I am convinced I could start a fake religion tomorrow and within six months Kenney would be sending us excruciatingly correct salutations on precisely the right made-up feast days. “The Conservative party wishes His Excellency the Pooh-Bah a happy and abundant Saskatoon-Picking Day.”

But there are many problems with the sudden agreement on an imminent Kenney succession, starting with the fact that accumulating authority with small ethnic and religious groups is?.?.?.?well, his job. Perhaps it gives him potential leverage in a leadership race, but it is indistinguishable from merely having done excellent work on behalf of Stephen Harper. Meanwhile, what of the abortion truce in the hands of a committed pro-life leader—someone who has, unlike Harper, actually been active in the pro-life movement? We are in an awkward situation here, speculating wildly about future leadership without having a licence to ask any potential contenders questions. As a result, the questions seem to be treated as though they are not relevant.

There are other questions, starting with, “Would the party want another leader from Alberta?” This one applies to some other perceived successors, as does “How’s his French? (No, really, how is it?)” For others, “Would you really want to see this person try to win a televised election debate?” seems like a good starting point. Jim Flaherty has shown signs of interest in the big job, but faces major health questions as a potential PM. Jim Prentice has a personal cult but would have to walk away from the income of Croesus to become a candidate.

There is definitely one man who has met all the qualifications, passed all the hurdles, and had his closet scanned for skeletons: It’s the guy who has the job now. The question is only whether he wants to keep it. So how would we really know if he didn’t? Harper doesn’t really have a lot of old foxhole-sharing cronies we can wheedle for clues. His leadership style involves surrounding himself with ultra-loyal young janissaries who would rather die than tell tales over Glenfiddich at Hy’s. His main source of enjoyment in life sometimes seems to be abusing and needling the press, a tactic that will remain a perennial winner for the foreseeable future. Why would a Conservative Prime Minister quit when it’s so easy to run against the media?




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Stephen Harper has no reason to quit while he’s ahead

  1. It is interesting that Colby addresses the question of whether Harper would step down as the leader of the Conservatives rather than as Prime Minister of Canada. Most pundits have worked it the other way round. However, I think Colby’s is the correct analysis as Harper himself tends to view the priorities of the former as his principle motivator for decision making with a large nod to CETA as the exception.

    • Yes, and he eats babies with his tail after impaling them on his horns and stuffing them in between two scientific journals and searing them – sort of a fascist panini – in between buying sprees of jets and jails and washing them down with a pilfered communion wafer and the tears of women and children while cackling at the lamentations of the poor and sick.

      Eight years of this nonsense. Give it up.

      • LOL Bobby, Is it the eight years in or the 21 months to go that has you upset. Harper seems cool as a cucumber at this point… you seem nervous. Tiime to suck it up, or stop reading about politics til Nov. 2015.

        • There are those of us that, are contacting Royal Canadian Legions. We are asking, that they and their families do not vote for Harper.

          Harper is a very deep, black abyss of corruption. Harper is also the only Canadian PM to be held, in contempt of Parliament.

          How that monster stays in office, boggles me? There is no honor, decency, ethic nor morals left in this country since, Harper so called majority.

          • Is there some, reason for this strange, use of commas?

        • Correction – intelligent as a cucumber!

          • Harper actually has, the personality of a turnip.

          • How would you know anything about what kind of personality he has? You hang out with him?

          • Pretty sure people could figure out Hitler’s personality too. There are certain similarities with rabid right wing, nationalist, Christian megalomaniacs that will do anything to win their coveted strong, stable majority government in order to pass through their hateful agenda and demagogue their respective “undesirables (Hitler had Jews and Communists, Harper has Muslims, socialists, and separatists)…

          • This comment was deleted.

          • Provide a reputable link.

            Because I can provide many reputable links that demonstrate that Pierre Trudeau was a Nazi sympathizer in his youth.

          • Fly right at it. I know Nazi fanatics too. I don’t have a lick of use for any of them.

            The real chuckle to me is, you actually think I am a Liberal.

          • Pierre Trudeau hasn’t been PM for 30 years. Jesus you really need to let it go…

          • What about Justin Trudeau and his admiration for the Chinese dictatorship? Is that recent enough for you?

          • lol u conservatives are too funny. You really don’t understand context, depth or nuance whatsoever. You just regurgitate right wing propaganda. It’s shamefully hypocritical for you to criticize Justin Trudeau’s comments while Stephen Harper is gleefully and rapidly codifying into law, Canada’s firesale to China. Have you read anything about the CNOOC deal? You criticizing Trudeau for making comments while Harper is literally selling out Canada to China is sort of like John McCain criticizing Barack Obama (US Senator of 5th largest state) for lack of experience after handpicking Sarah Palin (beauty pageant runner up) as VP. I’ll gladly post Trudeau’s exact words. He was sort of mocking Stephen Harper’s fulfillment of his long desired goal of running the country as a.. how did Stephen Harper put it himself.. “benign dictator”

            “a level of admiration … for China because their basic dictatorship is allowing them to actually turn their economy around on a dime and say ‘we need to go greenest, fastest — we need to invest in solar.’ I mean, there is a flexibility that I know Stephen Harper must dream about of having a dictatorship that he can do everything he wanted, and I find that quite interesting.”

          • Yes, China can turn things around “on a dime” because they have complete and irrevocable control over their citizens….they just eliminate anyone who speaks against them. BTW, didn’t Justin support the Chinese ownership of Canadian resources or did we in Alberta dream that? Are you guys going to run behind Justin, yelling “context, context” every time he says something stupid?

          • You both have a point. Trudeau’s comment was poorly phrased and can easily be misunderstood and misconstrued – I happen to think LD’s interpretation is the correct one [painful as it is to say, because LD has been making a lot of boneheaded comments on this thread that I would not ant to be associated with] but Trudeau will be wearing it a long time because it can easily be construed the way you have done.

            And yes JT did support the Harper government on selling us out to China. Sadly.

          • Keith, LD is a nasty, twisted person.
            Sadly, Justin Trudeau speaks before thinking OR he isn’t too clever. I sincerely hope he gets it together because if he is going to be PM, I want him to be smart.
            Many of the policies he is promoting in Alberta are in line with those of the CPC so some of this crap is ridiculous.

          • Actually, JT approved of the Nexen deal before Harper had announced support of the Nexen deal. Paul Wells was proud of that fact.

          • So let me get this straight. Justin Trudeau’s comments about Stephen Harper’s jealousy of dictatorship infuriates you. But you cheer and absolutely love it as Stephen Harper runs this country into the ground, sells us out to China, CNOOC (70% of oil sands owned by foreigners), imports a 500,000 man strong slave labour corps to steal jobs from Canadians. Stephen Harper’s Zionism is no big secret. He’s proudly stated AS CANADIAN PRIME MINISTER and Commander-in-Chief of our Armed Forces that “Canada will defend Israel whatever the cost”.

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AUfFdhIOoQM

            How many more Canadian soldiers does Stephen Harper want to send to their deaths to fight Israel’s war against Syria or Iran? How many more billions will we have to add to the Conservative deficit and the Conservative national debt?

            #SHAME

            Stephen Harper has been PM for 9 years now. Record deficits, record national debt, 7.2% unemployment (45,000 jobs lost just last month), record household debt, record provincial debt, record food bank use.. You conservatives need to OWN IT. Stop foaming at the mouth everytime someone utters “Trudeau”.

            Justin Trudeau won’t be Prime Minister until 2015. And boy is he gunna have a conservative mess to clean up…

          • I am not “infuriated” but rather find it amusing that you would suggest that Stephen Harper has ties to some neo-nazi group and then dismiss PET’s nazi sentiments and JT’s admiration for a brutal dictatorship. Then you dismiss that JT also supports Chinese ownership of a former Canadian oil company. There are NO foreign workers taking resource jobs from Canadians in Alberta because we are short of skilled workers here. We have too many jobs and not enough workers. If Canadians wanted the jobs, they could certainly have them. In fact, 1/3 of our province’s population is made up of people who came from other parts of the country to find work here.
            As for your war rhetoric….Jean Chretien sent Canadian troops into the Afghanistan desert in jungle camouflage.
            As for the Federal debt…..in 2008 there was a global recession. I guess we will never know how a different government might have handled it. We do know globally that many did much worse than Canada did. We also know some provinces in Canada with Liberal governments have not fared well and neither have ones with Conservative governments. How has your Liberal government in Ontario performed? Are you going to own that?

          • Wow…..you are completely crazy and obviously have no idea what you are talking about

          • Typical conservative. Whenever you guys can’t even refute one of my facts and you just resort to Ad Hominem attacks, you reinforce the fact that I was right and you just can’t handle it.

          • . but i think he’s talking about trudeau setting the stage

          • You know that Hitler was not a Christian, and was a rabid socialist, right? How does that make him “right-wing”?

            As a secondary thought experiment, what do you think about the fact that Pierre Trudeau was a Nazi supporter when he was younger, was also not a Christian, and loved every socialist dictator he ever met?

          • Hitler was a devout RC, and not socialist.

            Trudeau was also a devout RC.

          • No he wasn’t. He was a spiritualist that consulted mediums and his dog for advice. He also developed an Aryan religion that planned the extermination of Christianity (and all religions).

            From his personal journal:

            27th February, 1942, midday:

            It would always be disagreeable for me to go down to posterity as a man who made concessions in this field. I realize that man, in his imperfection, can commit innumerable errors– but to devote myself deliberately to errors, that is something I cannot do. I shall never come personally to terms with the Christian lie. Our epoch in the next 200 years will certainly see the end of the disease of Christianity…. My regret will have been that I couldn’t… behold .” (p 278)

            21st October, 1941, midday:

            Originally, Christianity was merely an incarnation of Bolshevism, the destroyer…. The decisive falsification of Jesus’ doctrine was the work of St.Paul. He gave himself to this work… for the purposes of personal exploitation…. Didn’t the world see, carried on right into the Middle Ages, the same old system of martyrs, tortures, *******? Of old, it was in the name of Christianity. Today, it’s in the name of Bolshevism. Yesterday the instigator was Saul: the instigator today, Mardochai. Saul was changed into St.Paul, and Mardochai into Karl Marx. By exterminating this pest, we shall do humanity a service of which our soldiers can have no idea. (p 63-65)

            13th December, 1941, midnight:

            Christianity is an invention of sick brains: one could imagine nothing more senseless, nor any more indecent way of turning the idea of the Godhead into a mockery…. …. When all is said, we have no reason to wish that the Italians and Spaniards should free themselves from the drug of Christianity. Let’s be the only people who are immunised against the disease. (p 118 & 119)

            Night of 11th-12th July, 1941:

            National Socialism and religion cannot exist together…. The heaviest blow that ever struck humanity was the coming of Christianity. Bolshevism is Christianity’s illegitimate child. Both are inventions of the Jew. The deliberate lie in the matter of religion was introduced into the world by Christianity…. Let it not be said that Christianity brought man the life of the soul, for that evolution was in the natural order of things. (p 6 & 7)

          • You seem to have gotten completely off the track and are now discussing PM Mackenzie King.

          • Oh, STFU you old fool !

          • Plenty of people who like to think they believe in free speech strongly dislike it when they meet it.

          • But attributing quotes from Hitler to Mackenzie King is pretty over the top, even for you. Can’t say as I blame Cawm for telling you to STFU when you get on with such utter drivel.

          • Hitler didn’t have a dog….now please stop being silly.

          • She may have gotten that wrong (don’t have a clue whether Hitler had pets or not, but was known to consort with psychics) but did she take the quotes from Hitler or King? They were, after all, the main point of her argument.

          • ‘May have gotten that wrong??’

            She has no argument and neither do you.

          • Just did a quick internet search; Hitler’s dog was named Blondie. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blondi

            So much for your little thesis, Em.

          • LOL it only took you 7 posts to get stupid this time Bram….you’re improving.

          • Yes, I DID get you, didn’t I? Though I’m surprised to see you call yourself stupid :-D

          • I repeat….Hitler is one of yours, not one of mine. Sorry.

          • Let’s see if I have this straight:

            Emily says Hitler was a devout Catholic. I demonstrate that he was definitely not devout, and was anti-Christian in his actual beliefs (as opposed to what he, a man whose government is renowned for its use of propaganda, publicly claimed) but Emily insists she is correct because of what was on his birth certificate and some of his propaganda.

            Emily says he didn’t have a dog, mocking another poster for suggesting same. I prove he had a dog. And so Emily calls me stupid because I proved she’s full of crap.

            Now Emily keeps insisting Hitler was a Newfoundlander. At least I assume that’s what she means; after all, I’m not a Catholic, and both Emily and Hitler are anti-Christian, so…

          • Hitler was a devout RC. I know religious people don’t want to accept that…but he’s one of yours, not mine.

            ‘Hitler’s dog’ did not run Germany. It was just a pet. Mackenzie King’s dog ran Canada….as did King’s dead mother.

            You have demonstrated nothing beyond your own nonsense….the words ‘goofy Newfy’ come to mind.

            Ciao

          • BTW it wasn’t me who claimed Hitler’s dog ran Germany. But you were the one who said he didn’t have a dog… period Which was patently false… as are so many of your posts.

          • Since you insist on denying Hitler was an atheist [I assume because it goes against your sworn belief that atheists never oppress or otherwise harm others], I guess you’ll next be insisting Stalin remained an Orthodox all his life, and that those beliefs were somehow responsible for the way he persecuted Christians?

          • Hands down, best post yet!!!

          • Yes, I’ll bet you all consider yourselves christians too.

          • Forgive me Father for I have sinned.

          • Add lying to your list.

          • Im confused as to where she went off track, it is you that has gone off the rails…..

          • Oh, Hitler used religion; many a sociopath has. Hardly makes him a “devout RC” though.

          • “Hence today I believe that I am acting in accordance with the will of the Almighty Creator: by defending myself against the Jew, I am fighting for the work of the Lord.” Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf

            “My feeling as a Christian points me to my Lord and Savior as a fighter.”
            Adolf Hitler, in a speech delivered at Munich, April 12, 1922

            “We were convinced that the people needs and requires this faith. We have therefore undertaken the fight against the atheistic movement, and that not merely with a few theoretical declarations: we have stamped it out.” Adolf Hitler, in a speech delivered in Berlin, October 24, 1933

            “Anyone who dares to lay hands on the highest image of the Lord commits sacrilege against the benevolent creator of this miracle and contributes to the expulsion from paradise.” Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf

          • “…after leaving home, Hitler never again attended Mass or received the sacraments.[349][350][351]
            Speer states that Hitler made harsh pronouncements against the church
            to his political associates and though he never officially left it, he
            had no attachment to it.” From the article I pointed you to above. Look up the definition of “devout”; clearly he was not.

            Also from the article:

            “…adopted some elements of the Catholic Church’s hierarchical organisation, liturgy, and phraseology in his politics.”

            “In public, Hitler often praised Christian heritage and German Christian culture, though professing a belief in an “Aryan” Jesus—one who fought against the Jews.[357] Any pro-Christian public rhetoric was at variance with his personal beliefs, which described Christianity as “absurdity”[358] and nonsense founded on lies.” (That last bit sounds an awful lot like you Em; a role model, perhaps?)

            “Hitler planned to destroy the influence of Christian churches within the Reich.[360][361] His eventual goal was the total elimination of Christianity.[362] This goal informed Hitler’s movement very early on, but he saw it as inexpedient to express this extreme position publicly”

            Yes, indeed, such a devout RC!

          • I’m not quoting Wiki….you are.

            Hitler seeking power, wrote in Mein Kampf. “… I am convinced that I am acting as the agent of our Creator. By fighting off the
            Jews. I am doing the Lord’s work.” Years later, when in power, he
            quoted those same words in a Reichstag speech in 1938.

            Three years later he informed General Gerhart Engel: “I am now as before a Catholic and will always remain so.” He never left the
            church, and the church never left him. Great literature was banned by his church, but his miserable Mien Kampf never appeared on the Index of Forbidden Books.

          • Mein Kampf was about winning people over to follow him. Why wouldn’t a sociopath looking to get people to do his bidding invoke religion if he thought it would help?

            The link I provided has all kinds of referenced material. But of course Dear Emily knows better than those historians.

          • I’m sorry…..I know you don’t want to claim him….but Hitler was one of yours.

          • A Newfoundlander? Really? I’d sure like to see your evidence for THAT!!!

          • Hahaha! Captain Sham? Have you seen Jim Carey in a Series of Unfortunate Events?

          • lol once you again you’ve revealed yourself to be a complete moron with no understanding of history. Are you unaware of the RISE OF FASCISM in Europe? Fascism. Hitler was a FASCIST. Not a socialist. How you cannot comprehend even these simple facts that are taught in Grade 10 History baffles me. But then again it shouldn’t shock me because of course you’re a Conservative. Hitler and Mussolini were FASCISTS. You really think that LIBERALS and INTELLECTUALS (usually the same thing) were voting for the Nazis in 1933? You madam are a fool. Hitler very strongly appealed to the RIGHT WING in Germany. He spoke of it and wrote about it often. The right wing and the conservative vote was the key to the Nazis’ rise to power. Just look up the 1933 election:

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/German_federal_election,_March_1933

            I mean these are long documented facts. The 2nd place party to the Nazis was the SOCIAL DEMOCRATIC PARTY under Otto Wels. They were the main liberal (maybe socialist) party in Germany at that time. This isn’t rocket science. It just takes a fully functioning brain to understand so I’m afraid there’s no hope for you.

          • You should use more capital letters. It would make your posts far more credible and persuasive.

          • Very persuasive counter argument. So you’re not conservative because you predict King Harper will lose his throne in 2015? Yet you’ve decided to troll me?

          • Glad to see that you agree with me on the fact that Hitler was a right wing conservative reactionary turned Fascist. Now plz go tell your friend Rick Omen that.

          • If you would have seen some of the disagreements Rick and I have had over marijuana decrim/legalization, you would realize that’s he’s not my “friend”.

          • You should try to use more sarcasm for the same result.

          • It doesn’t matter to the conbot fanatics, whether is is history or not. They will still call you a liar. They can’t see beyond the end of their noses. Nor, do they want to see the truth.

          • You’re absolutely right about that. Nor will they ever admit they’re wrong even when the evidence is posted right in front of them for all the world to see. Conservatives really do think and often act like Kindergarteners. You should’ve seen the babble Rick Omen posted in another article. He denigrated the Canadian Forces and then basically laughed that Canadian Cadets should have to buy their own winter uniforms.

            On top of the other stuff about Hitler, Harper’s idol Adolf was raised by a devout Catholic mother, he was a member of the Catholic Church until the day he died and the Nazi Party allied with the Catholic Centre Party to pass the Enabling Act (Patriot Act). Yet Rick actually has the gaul to say Hitler wasn’t a Catholic (or Christian). Sigh.. the imaginary alternate universe conservatives live in.

          • It was also the Catholic Church, that assisted Nazi war criminals to get out of Germany.

          • lol I never realized how much modern day right wingers and conservatives get in a tizzy when you attack their favourite 1930′s poster boy for conservatism, right wing populism, nationalism and yes indeed FASCISM. Rick was wrong. You are wrong. I am right. Here are some FACTS for you. Adolf Hitler was raised by a devout Catholic mother. He was a member of the Catholic Church until the day he died. He allied his Nazi Party with the Christian Centre Party in order to pass the Enabling Act (Patriot Act) and achieve other political goals. Christianity and conservatism often work together to win over the hearts and minds of the intellectually inferior, gullible, feeble brained among us. In other words, the base of the CPC and Republican Party.

          • 1) Not a conservative
            2) Politicians and sociopaths tell people what they want to hear in order to manipulate them Hitler was both, and very good at manipulating. Read the link; it makes it pretty clear where he stood. Definitely not a Christian in his real, private life.
            3) Hitler’s mother was a devout Catholic, but his father was not. Assuming his religious affiliation based on the beliefs of one parent is a stretch.

            Your FACTS paint a skewed and inaccurate picture.

          • Not skewed or innacurate at all. I didn’t assume religious affiliation whatsoever. That was just simply one of many facts I presented surrounding Adolf Hitler’s Christianity. You’re actually the one whose being intellectually dishonest and deceptive And I’ll tell you how. While you’re right that Alois Hitler (Schicklgruber) was not religious, you conveniently leave out the fact that Hitler absolutely despised his father. Here’s a quote for you. “However, Adolf had become so alienated from his father that he was repulsed by whatever Alois wanted.” His father died when Hitler was 13 years old and had very little influence over him other than seething hatred and vitriol. If anything, Adolf tried to be the polar (vortex?) opposite of Alois. He was much closer to his mother. Hence why my point was so much more relevant than yours. I would have thought you right wing neo-cons would have known this stuff… Why don’t you get the online copy of Mein Kampf that seems to be selling so well in Harperland so you can learn about the roots and spirit of Harper’s right wing populism, nationalism, and militarism.

          • You missed the point. I’m saying his mother’s faith does not dictate his, any more than his father’s does. Read the link; it is pretty clear that Hitler was NOT a religious man, despite public declarations.

            And if you think I’m conservative,you have either not been reading my comments or have a serious reading deficit.

          • I never said his mother’s faith dictated his so it’s funny that you would bring up “reading deficit”. I was painting a picture. If you don’t understand that if you’re born in rural Alabama you’re more likely to be an Evangelical Christian, born in Saudi Arabia > Muslim, born in Ancient Greece > love Zeus, then you miss my point entirely. If you’re saying that Adolf Hitler wasn’t attending Mass on a daily basis, that doesn’t mean he wasn’t Christian. He was a little busy expanding his Third Reich, waging WWII and slaughtering the Jews. He was a Christian man, there is no doubt of this, he was a member of the Catholic church until the day he died. He allied himself with the Catholic Centre Party and used religion to control and manipulated the feeble minded much the same way the Conservatives and Republicans do today.

          • That’s very perceptive of you. I believe that during the last Canadian federal election, Harper had the Pope out on tour with him the entire campaign. And look what happened: Conservative majority.

          • First of all, I’m not sure what you mean that Harper had the Pope out on tour with him… But if you’re talking about Pope Eggs Benedict Arnold, then ya I wouldn’t be surprised that Herr Harper was hanging out with a former Nazi.

            And make no mistake about it. Conservative majority happened because there are 3 left wing parties splitting the vote. 39% with all the voter suppression, propaganda, robocalls, campaign violations, Economic Failure Ads… is pathetic. Only 1 conservative party in this country and as incumbents all it could get was 39% of the vote. And now they’re down to about 27% in polls. Even the lunatic Republicans who destroy their own country still get 45-50% of the vote nationally. Face it cons. This is a liberal, progressive nation. King Harper is taking this country in a direction that the vast majority of Canadians don’t agree with. What do you call it when a tyrant rules his country with an iron fist against the wishes of 75% of his people? Pretty sure that’s a dictatorship. And if you want to say it has to be 100%, well I disagree, I’m pretty sure Gadhaffi and Saddam had plenty of supporters.

          • Seeing as Harper rules with such an iron fist, I guess you better go into hiding after making such a subversive post. Surely this means his secret police will be knocking on your door any minute now and packing you off to one of those gulags that you mentioned . . . but your bravery in speaking Truth To Power will not go unappreciated, I can assure you . . .

          • 1. Hence why I use an anonymous Twitter account to post my political beliefs.

            2. I was at the G20 in Toronto, I saw first hand exactly what Harper thought of free speech and free assembly in this country.

            3. You’re telling me CSIS does not spy on pretty much every Canadian in this country?

            4. You’re telling me Harper and the CPC don’t creep on people’s Facebook accounts to see if they can be allowed anywhere near the Prime Minister of Canada.

            5. I didn’t realize how gullible and naive conservatives were.. I should really get into the bridge selling business… lol could make a fortune selling nonsense to you guys.. conservatives have been doing it for years!

          • Seeing as you insist on calling me “conservative”, howzabout you tell me what specific views on what specific issues I hold that are in fact “conservative”?

          • Also, I don’t know about you but I’ve known a good many people who turned out just like the parent they despised. So don’t be so quick to discount the influence of his father on Hitler.

          • Now you’re just getting into nonsense. We’re talking about the specific case of Adolf Hitler’s seething hatred for his father, not your own anecdotal case of “I’ve known a good many people who turned out just like the parent they despised.” Hitler was a CHRISTIAN MAN. You clearly just want to debate the degree of his religiosity which I’m not interested in and which does not disprove my original point. It strengthens it.

          • Again – read the link. He public espoused Christianity because it gained him support (like many a politician and many other sociopaths) but his own private writings show he was not a believer and was using religion for his own ends.

            You and EmilyOne can now go your merry way and have a little pseudo-intellectual love-in.

          • I accept your surrender, and your apology. Hitler was a Christian, just not an overtly religious one. Clearly not to the degree that you would like. I’m glad we agree. As far as EmilyOne goes.. I don’t know her. Is she attractive? I wouldn’t mind. Pseudo-intellectual love in.. sounds hot. And very liberal.

          • “I accept your surrender, and your apology.”

            Twas neither – and proves my point about your reading skills.

          • Adolf Hitler was Catholic. Just not as religious as you’d like?

          • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adolf_Hitler#Religious_views

            But since you won’t take the time to actually go read it yourself, some crucial bits:

            “…after leaving home, Hitler never again attended Mass or received the sacraments.[349][350][351]
            Speer states that Hitler made harsh pronouncements against the church
            to his political associates and though he never officially left it, he
            had no attachment to it.”

            “…Hitler was fundamentally opposed to the Christian churches.[353]
            According to Bullock, Hitler did not believe in God, was anticlerical [like his father, you'll note],
            and held Christian ethics in contempt because they contravened his
            preferred view of “survival of the fittest”

            “Hitler planned to destroy the influence of Christian churches within the Reich.[360][361] His eventual goal was the total elimination of Christianity.[362] This goal informed Hitler’s movement very early on, but he saw it as inexpedient to express this extreme position publicly.[363] According to Bullock, Hitler wanted to wait until after the war before executing this plan.”

            I’m not sure how you define “Catholic”. If it’s by what was on his birth certificate, then yes I guess he was. If you define his religion by what he actually believed, however…

          • You’re hilarious. You talk about Conservatives always “lying” and having some problem with the truth, and meanwhile you claim that Hitler is Harper’s “idol”, with zero credible evidence to back up your claim. It’s like some satirist invented you.

          • National socialist.

          • Let me get this straight Derek. Your proof that Hitler wasn’t a fascist, is the name of a political party that was founded before he even joined it? Sigh…

          • I really thought that it was universally understood that Adolf Hitler was a fascist. I didn’t know this was controversial among today’s neo-nazis, neo-conservatives and right wingers.

          • You know, one can be both a fascist and a socialist eh? They aren’t necessarily mutually exclusive? Oh wait, I guess you didn’t know that. Ah well, there’s probably many things you don’t know.

          • So once again… your proof that Hitler was a socialist is the name of a political party that was founded before he joined it. Somewhere, Anton Drexler is spinning in his grave…

            Do you also believe in Democratic Party Tea Party members?
            Organized pro-establishment anarchists?
            Pro-Christian, anti-Muslim Al Qaeda?
            A fiscally responsible Canadian Federal Conservative government? – {in the last 100 years} (I’ll give you Sir John A the drinker)
            Unicorns, tooth fairies, God and Santa Claus?

            Question: How much nonsense can a conservative believe?
            Answer: Infinite.

          • They need to look up the word Fascist.

          • They’re afraid they’ll read a description of Stephen Harper’s policies with a throwback to the Reform Party, Northern Alliance (Canada), and National Citizens Coalition.

          • “Nazism, or National Socialism in full (German: Nationalsozialismus), is the ideology and practice associated with the 20th-century German Nazi Party and state as well as other related FAR-RIGHT groups.”

            “A majority of scholars identify Nazism in practice as a form of far-right politics.”

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Socialism

            Done and dusted…

            - Incoming conservative response:
            SCHOLARS?! What do they think know? Those nerds with their studies, and books, and knowledge and knowing things…

            This is why liberals try to encourage education, science, knowledge, research and information, it’s a selfish act to create more liberal voters.

            For their own reasons, it’s why conservatives have churches, book burning rallies, library closures, and KKK gatherings.

          • Seems, Mein Kampf can be ordered off the net. I wonder if Harper will have that book burned? Not very likely.

          • lol he’s probably ordering/downloading it on behalf of each and every Temporary Foreign Worker he imports into this country.

            #500,000strong
            #reachingnewdemographics

          • Looks like we’ve got a new resident crankpot. Glad you could grace us with your presence here at Macleans, because clearly we don’t have enough of them yet. By the way, use more capitals. It really helps make your point (whatever that is).

          • So basically what you’re saying is that you agreed with everything I wrote. You just felt I put in too many capitals. I’m fine with that. Unless you’re prepared to disprove with FACTS anything I posted there. You’re saying that Adolf Hitler wasn’t a fascist? Once again I’ll repeat, I really did think this was a universally understood fact. I didn’t think that Hitler’s fascism was controversial in the social circles of neo-nazis, neo-conservatives and right wingers.

          • Hey, you’re not Ron Waller are you? Just wondering. There is a certain similarity in writing style.

          • First time here actually. Never heard of him. Though if he’s similar to me then I take it as a compliment that he must also be brilliant, intelligent, compelling, thoughtful, wise, liberal, progressive and unlike the cons here… sane.

          • This one’s way, way more off the chart than Ron. Unless Ron dropped some serious acid or something.

          • You reference Hiltler so much…..is it perhaps you are terrified there is another Hilter among us and this time he will suceed?

          • Actually I reference Harper a lot more than Hitler. But I can see how you’d mix up the 2 tyrants. I didn’t even start that thread about Hitler, someone else did. I just put in a comment and got a lot of backlash from conservatives wanting to defend their favourite 1930′s right wing conservative icon. If by “Hitler among us”, you mean a megalomaniacal tyrannical despot hellbent on achieving a parliamentary majority by any means necessary. Who loves to demagogue those most vulnerable in society like the poor, the disabled, the unemployed. And attacks those he views as undesirables such as the socialists, the separatists and the Muslims. Then yes there is someone like that among us. He’s been the Prime Minister of Canada since 2006.

          • Fascism is national Socialism. What do you think Nazi stands for? National Socialist German Worker’s Party. Yep, a giant union. Plus, fascism’s third way was a newer idea (as opposed to marxist socialism with it’s international scope and lack of racism), in fact, it was very progressive for the time.

          • Adolf Hitler won the 1933 election because 17 MILLION German CONSERVATIVES freely voted for him. Conservatives love ELECTING dictators. Hitler, Harper, Bush, Cheney, etc etc. The strong man chest thumping neanderthal mouth breathing knuckle-dragging routine works very effectively on the feeble minded.

          • Hitler’s policies supported abortion and euthanasia. Nazism believes that all industry works for the benefit of the state and is state owned. They are given quasi-free reign as long as they don’t question the state. It therefore encouraged state controlled/owned monopolies. Again, this is opposed to the conservative ideal of Laissez-faire operation. You fail to realize that Conservatism is about small unobtrusive government. Liberalism is about large controlling government. Meaning, Hitler was very liberal minded (by today’s standards).

          • get ur feeble mind out of the gutter & join the real world—–this is 2014–we’ve never had it so good!!!!!!!

          • So you agree with everything i said, you just wanted to wish me a Happy New Year? Thank you. Happy 2014!

          • Yes, 17 million German Conservatives voted for the National Socialist German Workers’ Party.

          • Thank you! You finally get it! Yes NEWS FLASH! Adolf Hitler and the Nazis were far right fascists. lol something every kid learns in high school! He despised socialists and communists. That’s why he had them expelled from the Reichstag. That would be the SPD.. Social Democratic Party of Germany under Otto Wels. And the KPD.. Communist Party under Ernst Thalmann. This is basic German history people…

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/German_federal_election,_March_1933

            Although I wouldn’t expect conservatives to understand even basic things like gravity, evolution, science and math.

          • The Nazis promoted a socially conservative view of all aspects of life, supported by harsh discipline and a militaristic point of view.
            - Extreme homophobia leading to the systematic persecution of homosexuals.
            - Persecution of “degenerate art”.
            - Strong rejection of premarital sex, prostitution, pornography and “sexual vice”. Smoking, drinking and use of cosmetics were discouraged.
            - Anti-intellectualism.[15]
            - Revindication of a glorious past as the key to a glorious future.

            SOUNDS A LOT LIKE THE TEA PARTY, MODERN DAY CONSERVATIVE PARTY OF CANADA AND STEPHEN HARPER TO ME!

          • Nazism, or National Socialism in full is the ideology and practice associated with the 20th-century German Nazi Party and state as well as other related far-right groups.

            FAR RIGHT GROUPS!!! lol case closed. Admit you were wrong. Apologize. Move on. Take it like an adult. We all get things wrong sometimes. Hell… 39% of this country got it wrong in 2011 and now we’re all paying the price.

          • Nazism, or National Socialism in full is the ideology and practice associated with the 20th-century German Nazi Party and state as well as other related far-right groups.
            FAR RIGHT GROUPS!!! lol case closed. Admit you were wrong. Apologize. Move on. Take it like an adult. We all get things wrong sometimes. Hell… 39% of this country got it wrong in 2011 and now we’re all paying the price!!!

          • See how nice it is to learn things! Conservatives should try that more often.

          • What an intolerant fool you are.

          • man. do you get out much?

          • You bet I do. I watch Harper very, very closely. I know Harper from way back

          • I would say that sitting too close in front of a TV does no good to your eyes

          • . . . never mind other sensory/cognitive organ systems . . .

          • You talk out of the bottom, of your large intestine. That explains your opticalrectumitis.

          • Should the RCMP be keeping an eye out for you?

          • OK I will play your silly little game. The Police can keep an eye on me, if they wish to do so. Why don’t you call them and ask them to keep an eye on me?

          • How about, an anal personality?

          • Not me. I am not that stupid.

          • Never. I wouldn’t be that stupid.

      • Like anyone has ever proved that.

    • Although their is a way the liberals can beat him out in 2015. first Quebec has to play a major roll in it. as it stands right now the cons have no chance of winning Quebec(75 seats), and Quebec is not too happy with harper, and he(harper) wont get any votes in that province in 2015(very few anyway). knowing the liberals have a lot more support across the country than the NDP, what Quebec has to do is vote liberal across the province instead of NDP. the reason being is, the NDP as of now, has very little support for their party across the country and its not looking good from this point, but the liberals are gaining strength in all parts of the country. if the liberals can keep up this momentum up, than, like I said, if Quebec are still not happy with Harper, they should vote strategically for the liberals, and with the other support across the country,(that’s if this the polls don’t change for the liberals)the liberals could ride into a minority government(add a little of Ontario in their too). if the libs can conquer Quebec, than the only provinces that would be left for the cons would be between Alberta and Manitoba. I say to Quebec, if you decide to vote NDP, you will have to put up with another harper government. if Quebec wants to make a difference in 2015, they have to vote liberal, even if it takes holding their nose, but in the end, the cons may be relegated to a minority parliament in 2015. this is a plausible scenario.

      • knowing the liberals have a lot more support across the country than the NDP

        What fantasy land are you living in? The NDP have 22 seats to the Liberals 11 in Ontario, and 21-2 in BC. They also lead the Liberals by 2-1 in Manitoba and 1-0 in Alberta. In fact the only places the Liberals beat the NDP are the maritimes (12-6), and Saskatchewan (1-0).

        But generally your analysis is correct, in that if every region of the country suddenly starts voting Liberal, they could win the election. Though nobody has explained to me yet WHY people who haven’t voted Liberal in a decade would suddenly start. Or why NDP voters would suddenly switch to the Liberals.

        • Polls are for dogs and the pollsters have proven that at every turn in the past year. It is what is happening in the individual ridings that counts. I suspect the Conservatives have a handle on their support in the ridings where they have a chance to win. Hence no change in the strategy at this point. People have been calling for strategic voting since Harper was elected. It hasn’t happened in the past and it is not going to happen in 2015.

          • Strategic voting will never happen, because the Liberals would have to take a back seat to the NDP. It’s the same problem with the coalition. If they ever did decide to form a coalition, Mulcair would be the leader and Trudeau would have to play second fiddle for him. The Liberals can’t stand the idea that they’re not the most important party in the country, much less in their own little coalition.

            Agreed with the CPC having a handle on the polls in the ridings they can win. Liberals like to point to polls to show support for Trudeau, but they fail to realize that 50% of that support comes from downtown Montreal and Toronto.

          • There’s a far heavier concentration of Conservative support in 28 seat Alberta than there is Liberal support concentrated in the 22 seat City of Toronto and 24 seat Montreal Metro Area. I know you suck at addition since you think 65+106 = 65 so I’ll help you. 22+24 = 46. 46 > 28

        • By the time the 2015 election is called a lot of these NDP seats will flip to liberals. Like ive said before, Trudeau is working as a team that wants to work for the whole country and not just parts of it(not divide and conquer), and the other 2 parties are working as 1 man shows. Steve harper had didley squat experience(mailroom clerk) before he cheated his way into politics, but the people of this country are starting realize that the liberals wernt as bad as they thought compared to harper cons, and are starting to realize that the liberals are the most progressive and visionary of these parties, always looking for new ideas. they also feel they can TRUST Trudeau, because Trudeau, again, as I said before, has no corruption attached to him. he is a totally clean person, and tom, was tied to some kind of corruption years back(it took 20 yrs to come to surface) and voters consider tom a dark horse, their not sure if he is honest or not. after all, anyone who claimed Osama bin laden wasn’t dead, seems to lack judgement as well. the election will be about TRUST, not the eCONomy. Canadians are loosing trust in harper, and are having trouble gaining it for tom.

          • Wow, you must be part of the Trudeau team to be so brainwashed. After Trudeau’s comments of the past about Alberta and Quebec’s separation, you think he wants to work for the whole country? Maybe until he’s elected. Then watch out!

          • Ask Harper what he thinks of Atlantic Canadians, for starters. Then ask him about the firewall. JT isn’t the only one to say stupid things that alienate others. By your logic, then, Harper is “Alberta first” and would love to get rid of the East. Why would anyone east of the prairies EVER vote for him?

          • The correct answer is that anyone east of the Prairies that voted for Harper is a moron that voted against his/her own self interest.

          • Yes, what Canada needs more of is people voting for their own self interest and not that of the country. The new Liberal mantra will be:

            Ask not what you can do for your country, but what your country can do for you.

            JFK had it backwards, right?

          • Alberta delivers almost every seat in the province in every federal election to the Conservatives, and before that the Reform Party. Why? Because they’re voting in their own self-interest. Admit that. Admit you were wrong in your previous post. Please do that asap because you’re only further revealing yourself to be a blind moron. Unless you’re prepared to explain why Alberta votes overwhelmingly Conservative/Reform in every election for the last 25 years at least (93,97,2000,2004,2006,2008.2011) but it’s not in their own self-interest. You must be a paid troll because I honestly cannot believe that someone is so stupid.

          • That would certainly seem to be the CPC corporatist stance, yes… where the “you” is big business and those who own it.

          • In Harper’s earlier political days, he wanted to build a firewall around Alberta. To Harper the one and only western province is Alberta. The rest of the western provinces, don’t even count.

          • And in Pierre Trudeau’s earlier political days, he was a Nazi sympathizer.

          • Really?? Some people call Canada, Harper’s Fourth Reich.

          • Yes, and some people think the moon landings were faked. Some people think you can get a woman pregnant by kissing her with a pumpkin seed in your mouth.

          • Trudeau Senior and Trudeau junior always turned a blind eye to corruption in Quebec because it funneled more money from the rest of Canada into Quebec.

            You think something change because junior moved across the into Ottawa.

            Trust a Liberal – You must be joking.

            “Just IN” January 10

            Senate scandal spreads as RCMP investigate further fraud charges against former Liberal Mac Harb

          • Good gawd!! There is a Liberal Senator doing time for, a much lesser sum of money thieved. We will see if any of Harper’s favorites, get to do time?

            People are so damned stupid. What does it matter the politician or the party? It is still our money, no matter who steals it.

          • Ha! Trudeau’s clean? How about the tens of thousands of dollars he was taking for speeches while he was a sitting MP? How about the fact that he sees nothing wrong with being an MP and a pothead at the same time?

            Claiming that Trudeau wants to work for the whole country while he’s constantly attacking Alberta and talking about how Quebec has a superior culture to the rest of the country, is a little bit rich.

            You can attack Harper’s experience in 2004 all you want. The fact of the matter is that he’ll have been PM for 9 years come the next election. You think the Liberal strategy will be to point out that Harper’s too inexperienced for the job, after doing the job quite well for 9 years? Good luck with that.

          • Once again, you are overstating JT’s drug use and making yourself look idiotic. A pothead is a chronic user. Based on what is publicly known, if JT is a pothead then Harper is an alcoholic – we’ve all seen pictures of him with a beer.

            And if you have evidence of greater usage than JT himself openly divulged, then let’s see it. i.e. – put up or shut up.

          • Trudeau never said he’d quit smoking pot. He claims he’s done it “5 or 6 times”, but I’ve never met a drug user who’s honest about how often they use. The fact of the matter is the only reason he admitted to smoking pot was because he knew it was going to come out eventually. Why? Because I’m guessing he’s smoked pot a lot more than 5 or 6 times, and there’s probably a LOT of people who’ve seen him smoking pot.

            Sure, you can accuse Harper of being an alcoholic as much as you want. Nobody will believe you, and you’ll look like a fool. But I’d also point out that alcohol is not illegal. Justin Trudeau thinks that he’s special, and he’s above the law so he should be able to smoke weed whenever he wants.

            Why hasn’t Trudeau just come out and said “Yes, I smoked pot as an MP, and that was a mistake. I promise that mistake will not happen again?” It’s because he doesn’t plan on quitting, he thinks that it’s perfectly fine for an MP, or someone who wants to be PM to be smoking pot. I disagree with him.

          • I’ve never met a beer drinker who is honest about their consumption either. “Yeah, man, I can drink a 24 and not even stagger.”

            Seriously, I’m not calling Harper an alcoholic – I’m saying you’re a fool for calling JT the pot-smoker equivalent of an alcoholic. Potheads are chronic users, often with a psychological addiction. So you’re slandering JT and in the process making yourself out to be either an idiot who doesn’t know the meaning of the word he’s using, or a deliberate liar. Please feel free to clarify which one you are.

            A lot of Canadians think pot should be legal. Trudeau is one of them. He is trying to differentiate himself from Harper, who has prove time and again he is a lying hypocrite – so why would JT say his pot smoking is a mistake? He’d just put himself in the same camp as Harper.

            So yeah, he’s done something illegal because he thinks the law is wrong. And he’s admitted to it. As opposed to Harper and other CPC folks who break the law and do everything possible to lie about it and cover it up. And between pot smoking and political corruption, I know which I consider less harmful.

          • How do you know Trudeau’s not a chronic pot smoker? He seems to have plenty of time since he doesn’t bother attending parliament anymore.

          • “How do you know he’s not?”

            Of course the burden is on you to demonstrate that he is. But you have no evidence,and as usual, you’re lying.
            All you do is lie</a. You'd be mute if it wasn't for lying.

          • My evidence is that he says he smokes pot. His words, not mine.

          • Nice try, stupie. But we’re talking about your using of the terms “chronic” and “pothead” without the faintest whiff of evidence. To people of standard ethical means, this is known as “lying”.

          • Trying to get through to some on this board is, an exercise in futility. It boggles me how terribly uninformed people are, regarding Harper.

            They have no clue of what, they are going to be hit over the head with. They can’t grasp the fact, that being sold out to China, is not a good idea.

          • You can bet the Chinese don’t smoke pot! You are right in line Stevo.

          • Trudeau is a third party opposition. It isn’t that big of a deal if, he doesn’t attend Parliament. Trudeau does attend if anything is connected to him and his party.

            Harper attended Parliament six times in, five and a half months.

          • So what you’re saying is that Trudeau believes attending party events is more important than parliament.

            It’s always party before country with you Liberals. And not the kind of party where Trudeau can sit back and smoke a few joints with friends.

          • No. That is just the way it is and always has been. Harper attended Parliament, six times in five and a half months.

          • “It’s always party before country with you Liberals” That’s rich coming from a CPC supporter. Take the Senate scandal: That whole mess came about because CPC hacks thought protecting the party image was paramount; to hell with the truth.

          • What’s a matter Rick nobody inviting you to the party? Too busy putting your country first are you? Atta boy! Now tell me old boy who are we attacking next now that it’s all mission accomplished in Afghanistan?

          • You are absolutely right. Trudeau’s presence in the HoC is of no consequence.

          • Obviously neither is Harper skipping out of Parliament either. Harper is useless in Parliament. He dares not speak without his script. He either prorogues Parliament when his is in trouble and/or he skips the country

          • How do you know Harper isn’t a closet alcoholic? If a bombast like Ford could keep it under wraps for so long, surely Harper can.

            My comment is sarcasm, BTW. The sad part is, yours isn’t; it’s just a pathetic attempt to smear someone with baseless insinuations.

          • Are you implying the future Prime Minister listens to Jazz music? Their satanic music is driven by marijuana, and marijuana smoking by white women makes them want to seek sexual relations with Negroes, entertainers, and others. It is a drug that causes insanity, criminality, and death — the most violence-causing drug in the history of mankind!

          • Pot is not a Narcotic. Cocaine is. Too bad people can’t see a head scan on, the brain of an alcoholic. Or perhaps a chest x-ray on a patients lungs, dying of cancer from smoking. Pot is also used for medicinal purposes.

            The police had the best suggestion? Ticket people for pot as they do for drunk drivers.

          • LOL you point to smoking as dangerous, and then suggest that smoking pot isn’t dangerous? Give your head a shake pal.

          • If you don’t know the difference between tobacco and pot? You really aren’t very bright.

            If your mouth was any bigger, you could get both of your feet in it.

          • Please keep up this line of attack on Trudeau. Repeat it as often as you can no matter what the subject of discussion is.

          • Didn’t Harper already completely flip flop and semi-announce that the CPC is gunna lighten up on their War on Drugs and War on Canadians? Maybe Harper has become frustrated that he’s already filled our jails to the max with his undesirables like blacks and natives. I guess he’s waiting for more jails to be built under his tough on crime trip to the 1980s.

          • Harper does, chug-lug-beer. Harper most certainly did not want to come out against his good friend Ford, with his boozing and doing crack Cocaine.

            I can’t believe all of this stupid hype regarding pot. The Police had the best suggestion? Ticket pot the same as they do with drunk drivers.

          • Not only that? Harper campaigned very hard for Ford. Booze and Cocaine is acceptable to Harper. However, don’t you dare get caught smoking pot.

          • As for “doing the job quite well”… well, that’s a matter of opinion. And in my opinion and that of a good many other Canadians anyone who thinks so is doing more drugs than JT.

          • Voters seem to think he’s been doing a good enough job that the CPC has gotten more votes each election since 2004. The exact opposite of the Liberals, who continue to flounder, yet seem to think a trust fund playboy pothead is the guy to save them.

          • I think Harper will be hard pressed to repeat his success; at best, you’re looking at a CPC minority next time around.

          • I’m pretty sure you made the same prediction last election also. How’d that work out?

          • The other politicians, didn’t cheat to win.

          • Actually their vote count dropped from the 2006 election to the 2008 election. Wrong again Bob…

          • Harper is no Conservative, what-so-ever. He was Policy Chief for his, Northern Foundation of 1989. That should have been enough, to scare the hell out of everybody.

            Most politicians do moonlight, even Harper. He acts in TV shows. He wrote a book. He also plays in a band.

            The only job Harper ever held was, when he dropped out of University and worked in the same oil company his Dad did. Other than that, Harper has lived on the tax payers dime.

          • He was the director of the National Citizens Coalition. They’re not taxpayer funded, neither was his job at the oil company.

            Every single job Trudeau’s had was on the taxpayers dime. He’s never earned a cent in the private sector.

            But yes, please continue to perpetrate the Norther Foundation lie (are they taxpayer funded too?!?). It’s been widely discredited and just makes people like you look stupid.

            BE VERY AFRAID OF HARPER!!! HE’S A MEAN AND EVIL MAN!!! LOLOLOLOL

          • “Every single job Trudeau’s had was on the taxpayers dime. He’s never earned a cent in the private sector.’

            Heh. I guess you missed the whole thing wherein Trudeau was self-employed public speaking. Or you’re lying. Lying or ignorant – it’s a toss-up really.

          • No. He has Harper mixed up. It was Harper upon dropping out of University, that went to work at the same oil company his dad worked for.

            That is the only job Harper ever had. He has lived on the tax payers dime, ever since.

          • Harper ran the National Citizens Coalition. Is that not a real job? The NCC has more members than the Liberal Party of Canada does.

          • I do know what Harper used to do. That is why I refuse to vote for him.

          • So just to clarify. What you’re saying is that Harper was either a mailroom clerk, or a right wing extremist preaching hate and firewalls.

          • How many of his public speaking gigs weren’t paid for by government funded institutions? Zero.

            Then there’s also the inconvenient truth that he was collecting his MPs salary while he was double-dipping by charging taxpayers for a speech.

          • You may want to reevaluate your understanding of the term “private sector”. Apparently you don’t know what it means.

          • Most politicians do moonlight. Harper wrote a book, acted in TV shows and he plays in a band.

          • Could you provide a reputable for any of those allegations that aren’t written by conspiracy theory losers in their mom’s basement?

            Also, I don’t want to download the Malware.

          • TFB I don’t give a damn what you believe. There are books written regarding, Harper’s Northern Foundation. This is all old history. Pretty much everyone knows of this, but for you of course.

          • I do remember Harper’s earlier political days. Harper has a very, very shady political past.

          • You don’t have a mind to lose.

          • Not one of your links even mentions Harper. One is a Bilderberg conspiracy site. Another talks about aliens in Japan (with pictures!) And you spelled stopracism wrong, so the link doesn’t work. I’m sure it’s a great site though. Anyway, we’ve pretty much determined from your sudden appearance and incessant posting on this single subject, along with your insistence that you have first hand knowledge, that you are just a senile old bastard with too much time on your hands, and not enough intellect to use it wisely. Thanks for coming out. Good night.

          • Get lost. You are too pathetically stupid. Those links work just fine for everyone else. Always have.

          • He is a very mean and evil man. He doesn’t even hug his own son. He is incapable of human feeling.

          • The Neo-Nazis donated to Harper’s Alliance in 2002.

          • You do realize that that allegation regarding the Northern Alliance has been retracted by the original source don’t you? Apparently not.

          • Sorry. I indeed do remember Harper’s earlier political days. I used to vote PC until, Harper trashed the party and turned it into, a fascist dictatorship. Harper did hire Wolfgang Droege and his Heritage Front as, security for Preston Manning. Back then, skinheads were not in favor with most society. I don’t think they are to-day either.

          • So your appeal for Harper in 2015 is that the man spent 9 years driving Canada into the ground with the largest deficits in Canadian history, a record Canadian national debt, slowest economic growth since the days of RB Bennett, and 500,000 temporary foreign workers imported to steal jobs from Canadians and suppress the wages of Canadians who are working. That’s your case for Harper 2015? lol you conservatives are running out of morons who are gunna buy into your nonsense.

          • The stat that matters is deficit to GDP ratio, and that is much lower now than it was under either Trudeau or Mulroney-Campbell. Grab a brain will ya?

          • Uhh no that’s not the only stat that matters actually. Although when your tyrant King Harper racks up the largest deficits in Canadian history then I guess that’s what you have to tell yourself. You’re obviously a Conservative so I’ll say this. IF you did have a brain.. you would know that the LIBERALS under Chretien and Martin ran 11 straight budget surpluses from 1995 to 2006 and CUT your beloved DEBT TO GDP RATIO IN HALF. Mulroney left Chretien a $30 BILLION DEFICIT. The Liberals left Harper a $13 BILLION SURPLUS. Look at the mess Harper is leaving to Trudeau in 2015. 75% of Canada’s national debt has been racked up by just 2 conservatives, Mulroney and Harper. There’s a stat that matters.

          • I notice you didn’t mention the mess Trudeau left Mulroney. In any event, you seem to think that absolute numbers are the numbers we should pay attention to. In which case, we are all infinitely wealthier than just about everybody who lived 50 years ago, because our salaries are so much higher, in absolute terms. So we should all be extremely happy about this.

          • “You’re obviously a Conservative”
            You’re funny. I’m predicting lower down on this comment board that Harper will lose the next election. I’m in favour of legalized and taxed marijuana, legalized prostitution, I opposed Harper’s GST cut, I opposed his long-form census move, and I voted Liberal last election. Thanks for coming out, Einstein.

          • Haven’t you realized that unless you worship at the alter of Trudeau and literally view Harper as the devil incarnate, you are a CONBOT-HACK-BLARGHLY!!!!!

          • The guy sounded like a moron so I assumed he was a Conservative. This is an effective protocol in 99% of cases.

          • Oops! Almost forgot! You can also tell how non-partisan I am by my totally hilarious ironic handle, and the way I also love to use my totally hilarious and witty irony to respond to nutty Conservatives like Hollinm and Rick Omen.

          • Actually I was perfectly justified in thinking that you were a Conservative based on the sheer stupidity and ignorance displayed in your posts which I will explain.

            1. You praise Harper for the debt to GDP ratio being lower than under Trudeau and Mulroney while clearly not understanding why. First of all, the debt to GDP ratio has gone UP under King Harper’s rule. Secondly, the reason why it was HALF in say 2006 when he seized power than it was in the 80s or early 90s is because the LIBERALS under Chretien and Martin CUT the debt to GDP ratio in HALF. They left Harper a booming economy, 5.5% unemployment, and a $13 BILLION SURPLUS. He’s squandered all of that and let me repeat, he’s RAISED the debt to GDP ratio.

            That’s enough proof right there that your neurons and synapses aren’t exactly firing on all cylinders but I’ll go on.

            2. You’ve doubled down on the claim that NONE of the other stats matter, only debt to GDP ratio. This is an extremely short sighted and narrow view of a how a national economy works. There are plenty of other factors which come into play, many of which I’ve mentioned such as deficits, national debt, economic growth, unemployment, slave labour (TFW), household debt, poverty, etc etc etc. I did not say that debt to GDP ratio wasn’t important, I said it wasn’t the only stat worth considering. The fact that Mulroney and Harper alone account for 75% of Canada’s national debt is very striking.

            3. Finally, you present this tidbit of evidence as proof somehow that you’re not Conservative: I’m predicting lower down on this comment board that Harper will lose the next election. “I’m predicting lower down on this comment board that Harper will lose the next election.” So I’m a proud liberal progressive. But if I predicted in 2006 that Stephane Dion was a disaster and we would not do well, then that means I’m not liberal anymore?

            Sigh that’s enough for now. I’ve fundamentally intellectually destroyed you. Keep yelling DEBT TO GDP at the top of your lungs all you want, you sound like a moron.

          • When you’re discussing debt and deficits, yes it really does only matter when compared to GDP. What you’re ignorantly arguing is that someone with a $1000 credit card balance is just as screwed if they make $20,000 or $100,000. Anybody with a half a brain can see that’s not the case.

          • Funny how you ignore the deficits, the record Canadian national debt, the 7.2% unemployment, the 500,000 slave labour corps, anemic economic growth, record household debt, record provincial debt across the country, record food bank use, record child poverty, third world conditions for many, and even Harper’s supposed strengths.. no Keystone cuz Obama can’t stand dictators like Harper, pipeline to nowhere.. You ignore all the FACTS and think the only stat that matters is Debt to GDP. Could you be more narrow-minded and opaque? Sigh.. Typical conservative…

          • There are those who even think, Harper is a Conservative.

            Harper is the one and only Canadian PM, that is in contempt of Parliament. Harper is the worst and most corrupt PM, in the recorded history of this Nation.

            We don’t even know? How much of Canada, Harper has signed over to Communist China?

          • Yes, the reason Keystone is in trouble is because Obama thinks Harper is a dicator. I read that in reliable US media outlets all the time.

          • Keystone is gunna get a big NO in Harper’s face cuz Harper has no clue how to negotiate or be diplomatic. He just knows how to sell out 70% of the oil sands and counting to foreign entitities and give Dick Cheney-like no bid contracts to buy 60 jets we don’t need in order to fight the imaginary Cold War that conservatives are still fighting that ended in 1989. Either that or to challenge the joint Taliban-Al Qaeda Air Force Complement of 0 fixed wing aircraft.

          • Actually. Harper did mange to insult and anger Obama, regarding the Keystone. The U.S. has their own giant oil fields. They really don’t need our oil.

          • Foreign temp program rolls on in oil patch. Canadians laid off, replaced by Harper’s cheap foreign labor. Recruiters charge $12,500.
            Dec 16/2013
            thetyee.ca

            Thousands of jobs forecast for, Chinese Northern BC mine plans
            March 28/2011
            http://www.princegeorgecitizen.com

            They’ll keep spending until, we learn to love them.
            Dec 22/2013
            ipolitics.ca

            The worst is, how uninformed many people are.

          • Thank God we have enlightened souls like you around to set us straight. It’s a lonely job you have, but you are a hero for selflessly doing it.

          • Your stupidity is not my problem. And, you are stupid.

          • Oh ya, Canada’s a real shit-hole, isn’t it? If you hate this country so much, move to the USA where Obama’s been doing a BRILLIANT job with the economy.

          • Good gawd!! How stupid can you get? China has polluted much of their farmland and 40% of their water. Dead pigs come floating down China’s rivers.

            FIPA deal with China means, We will have thousands of Chinese here for a minimum of 31 years. Harper is selling our Canadian farms to China. Now we can have dead pigs floating down our rivers. China needs our food crops to feed themselves over here, and back in China.

            Communist China is the menace of the globe. Other countries kick China the hell out of their territories. Harper is stupid enough to permit that country, to set up shop right on our Canadian soil.

          • What’s Trudeau’s plan for 2015? No, seriously. After all the Senate shenanigans, lots of Canadians seem ready to abandon Harper. If the Libs don’t start to come up with some concrete plans Harper just might get back in.

            PS. Come to the Prairies, we have LOTS of jobs for any Canadian who would like to work.

          • Please keep calling Trudeau a pot head.

          • Well? That is better than Harper’s good friend Ford, being called a crackhead.

          • I like to encourage them because it makes them sound like idiots.

          • “Trudeau is working as a team that wants to work for the whole country and not just parts of it(not divide and conquer),”
            Yeah, that’s why Trudeau tells Quebec journalists that Albertans have no business holding federal office and should be prevented from participating in governing our country. No divide and conquer strategy there at all. And about his father . . . “screw the West and take the rest”. He was a real unifier too.

        • Seems Premier Clark is under investigation for election fraud too. She prorogued Legislature, the same time Harper prorogued Parliament. Christy Clark knows, she would be raked over the fire. We also know the Campbell/Clark BC Liberals work for Harper. Harper his favorite henchman Campbell and Clark, all cheated to win their elections.

          The everyday people of BC, despise Harper, Clark and Enbridge. Nor have we forgotten about Gordon Campbell and his treachery to the BC people either.

          Harper’s sellout of Canada to Communist China began, way back in Campbell’s reign of terror.

          • You’re being far too fair, balanced and dispassionate.

          • It’s the sad truth. Fadden of CISIS at that time, warned of China’s huge inroads into Canada. BC was specifically mentioned because, Campbell had already gave much of BC to Red China.

            Harper’s rotten FIPA deal with Communist China and his Omni-Bull-S-Bill that permits China to sue Canada if, anyone tries to block China’s takeover of our country. China can even sue Canada in, the International Courts.

            People need to, wake the hell up.

          • I love the “Red China” thing. Did you work for Senator McCarthy?

          • Mugabe, the Communist China Army and China’s blood diamonds
            dailymail.co.uk

            Chinese buy up Canada’s farms.
            June 22/2013
            foxnews.com

            China trade deal a, 31 year ball and chain on Canada.
            Oct 19/2012
            thetyee.ca

            Y’know, all of those made in BC jobs Christy Clark promised
            Dec 22/2013
            thegallopingbeaver.blogspot.ca

          • The Tyee AND Fox News. Objectivity personified. Well, you’ve convinced me.

          • You need to head on over to the Sun. That is where people like you really belong. I mean, does the Sun not have any bias?

          • Who are the “Everyday People of BC? I live here and I guess I don’t meet or talk to” Every day People” Don’t speak for me or my family and friends

          • Those people are, people in my neck of the woods. I would never speak for a fanatic conbot. I usually just ignore them.

        • So you’re using May 2011 data to represent current trends in party support in January 2014? The more I read your nonsense, the more I realize how deep the well of Conservative intellectual sluggishness goes.

      • Only problem with your analysis is that Quebec has not abandoned the NDP and there will be many ridings where split votes will take place. So who knows which opposition party will come out on top. For the rest of Canada it is a choice among three and only three. Do they want a socialist government who wants to create a utopian state with other peoples’ money or the kid with a famous name who has done nothing to prove he is capable of leading a one man band let alone a government. Harper warts and all is the only one of the three who has the cred to continue to govern the country.

        • they will, Nl got the message and voted harper out of the province because they couldn’t trust the man(no matter what harper does down their, NLs lost his trust). as long as Quebec keeps voting for the dippers, than harper will rule the roost, has nothing to do with strategic voting. if Quebec wants to see the back of harpers head, they will have to vote liberal or put up looking at tom whaling all day in the HOC getting nothing done after 2015(the dippers stand a better chance of getting things from the libs). Electing tom because he had a crack at harper in the HOC isn’t going to cut it for voters in the country, its great entertainment to watch, but it dosnt move votes, you have to get out in the communities to do that, not sit in the HOC making harper look like a doofas, harper always looks that way anyway these days( I didnt realize, harper even waddles when he walks)(overweight weeble). Aside from that. the dippers are not going to move much on the numbers anymore than they are now.

        • That was probably true…when he had less warts. The public gets tired of everyone eventually. It happened to Pet, it happened to Brian and it would have happened to Chretien. It is happening to Harper. Can he get it back? Who knows. I’m betting not this time.

        • The real concern is just that,. The left are so easily led by their hatred of anything that opposes their narrow minded view that they will vote for the good looking kid with the famous name instead of looking at the facts. The world came through a major recession driven by our southern neighbours and no country in the world has emerged better than Canada. Not a coincidence – imagine what would have happened if the Dippers or the child had been in power – frightening.

    • Um .. I have tried to read your comment three times and don’t seem to understand it. I will have to go read the Jeffrey Simpson column you are referring to hypothesizing about how Harper will resign as PM yet keep leading the Tory party with its majority of seats. Amazing gambit. Harper’s playing chess, rest of us playing checkers.

      • I’m not at all sure that’s what SS meant.[ he can speak for himself of course] What would be the point of resigning as PM yet remain Tory leader? Either he resigns as PM and we get a caretaker PM until an election, he calls an election early. There would be zero point to your proposition.[ maybe it's me that's confused?]

      • I think what he’s saying is that Harper puts the good of the CPC ahead of that of the country, and thus leader of the party is how he sees himself first – ahead of PM. At least, that’s how I read it.

        • A public nation will eventually discard a private government.

      • Sorry dawg, I was going to write a second paragraph but I was in a rush.

        Of course with a majority, the jobs of Conservative Party Leader and Prime Minister of Canada belong to the same person. However that doesn’t make them the same job and that doesn’t mean they have the same priorities. Indeed, we create two separate offices with separate staff and (hopefully) separate budgets to manage the two activities. It does mean that if one quits one job, the other goes… however which job motivates your decision to stay or go?

        Colby points to all the reasons that Harper is secure as Conservative Party Leader. If Harper felt he was losing his caucus, perhaps he would want to go before that could happen. However, Colby’s point is that is not likely a concern. There isn’t a Conservative “Paul Martin” trying to push him out the door. The Conservative Party is certainly better off with Harper leading it in the next election than it would be with any of the other candidates.

        Most of the other pundits have started from the premise that Harper has been Prime Minister for a while. His public persona has been listless for the past year in stark contrast to the energy he exhibited in the lead-up to the “strong, stable majority” election. Does he really want to go into a “hanging by the skin of my teeth” election with the most likely outcome a minority Conservative government? Does he really want to stick around if Duffy is going to keep talking, Wallin starts talking, Wright gets charged or robocalls erupts? On the flip side, does Harper have some legacy project he want to achieve as Prime Minister that he has not yet achieved that would keep him in place?

        Of course, ultimately when Harper decides to quit it will be an interplay of internal Conservative party dynamics and his relationship with the electorate as Prime Minister. My point was Colby only talked about the former whereas most of the others talked only about the latter.

  2. “We are in an awkward situation here, speculating wildly about future leadership without having a licence to ask any potential contenders questions.”

    What does this mean – are you saying Canadian journos are lickspittles who are scared to ask questions of powerful people? What’s the point of journos if they are not curious people who ask questions. Canadian msm are more stenographers than they are journos.

    And I think all the speculation of Harper quitting is idiotic – we have no reason at all to believe a guy who’s been dreaming of being PM since he was a teen is just going to up and quit half through his first majority government. If we had more right wing people in the media, our left wing journos would have to wind down some of their more fanciful ideas and start dealing in reality.

    • Er, Ivison is left wing in your world i presume? Maybe it is true that Canadian journos aren’t exactly bull dogs in the way you and i might like, but given how unwilling most of these powerful people are willing to actually give interviews or say anything when they do, what’s to be done but speculate?
      I’d say the real lack of guts lies with our political class who simply wont go on the record. This is one of the few things i admire about Conrad – i wouldn’t say he lacks balls at least.

      • I don’t know my canadian newspaper history but it seems our journos have adapted french system of giving public people enormous amounts of privacy. I read today that France PM is suing news outlet for publishing photos of him and famous actress having an affair.

        I am anglo who believes in free speech and i think it is outrageous the amount of privacy given to public officials here in Canada. If PM Cameron was having an affair with a famous actress, the uk msm would tear him to shreds, and rightly so.

        I also think Ottawa is small town, the journos and bureaucrats and politicians mingle with one another often and it is hard for msm to highlight peoples poor performance when your children play soccer together and your season tickets for symphony right beside one another.

        • Different cultures.But it might be fun to test your theory out. I don’t see any real evidence for it. More likely we[Canada] are simply playing to our cultural stereotype – mindful and deferential of authority.

  3. From the writer: I expect someone to claim any minute now that Harper actually has already retired in some nuanced, invisible way.

    Minutes up! He has considering how little he has admitted to knowing about what is going on in his office. Even the staff he hired starting with Nigel Wright obviously didn’t think he was doing a good enough job to have kept all the senate scandal stuff away from him and went ahead and along with at least 12 others did the job they though should have been done from the PMO. And from what has been written here the only conclusion that one can come away with is that all things or people considered the really bad news it that Harper is the best they have and that if he leaves, yes people, things can always get worse than they are. Hard to believe isn’t it?

  4. Harper quits worse jobs for better ones.
    Is there any hope he will quit to take over Chuck Strahl’s job as chair of the Manning Centre? …or become the head of the Fraser Institute … or Enbridge?
    As his job as PM for Alberta’s oil corporations comes to an end, surely his ardent ideological passion and service to said corporations will be rewarded.

  5. I am convinced I could start a fake religion tomorrow and within six
    months Kenney would be sending us excruciatingly correct salutations on
    precisely the right made-up feast days.

    Brilliant. I laughed out loud at this.

    • Aren’t all religions fake…

    • “My fellow Canadians.

      We have all just witnessed a sad spectacle — a prime minister so
      burdened with corruption in his own party that he is unable to do his
      job and lead the country, a party leader playing for time, begging for
      another chance.

      This is not how a prime minister should act.”

      Stephen Harper April 1, 2005

      • I`m not sure what the corrupt actions of the former Liberal party has to do with an article about the present PM who is in the middle of a useful visit to prosperous Western Canada, having just signed a Free Trade agreement with the European Union.
        Maybe you just wanted to make the contrast. Thanks for that !

        • I just found it funny Harper said that back that time and now his office is plagued with the senate Scandal…. unless your ignoring it like most of the conservative party….

      • Thanks God old harpo is willing to step up and run against Dear Leader.

  6. Harper’s closet has never been scanned….nor has his house for that matter. While we learned all about Martin’s child raising, Dion’s inability to match his socks or change lightbulbs, Ignatieff’s first marriage and relations with his brother….and of course every time Justin has sneezed over the years…..there is this large curious blank spot around Harper.

    Make-up artist, chair-kicking, room full of personal photos, missing rings, missing relatives, fake Xmas cards, science-trashing….enough strange things to make Mackenzie King look normal……but nary a peep. Our media isn’t leftwing, it seems to be full-on rightwing and totally incurious.

    However it won’t matter now. Harper is going to do his own news show….calling it literally ’24/7′, so our media can all go home and play dog days of summer year round now. Probably for years to come.

    An odd silence has fallen on the land….like a blanket of snow.

    Will Canada ever see spring again?

    • An odd silence has fallen on the land….like a blanket of snow.

      Will Canada ever see spring again?

      No, we won’t, it will be winter forever. Scientists will blame it on global warming.

      • Dude, don’t even joke about this sh*tty, sh*tty winter lasting forever.

        • Why do you hate the Canadian climate?

        • What do you think spawned the Canadian snowbirds yearly treks to warmer climes in Florida and Arizona….this kind of “sh*ttty, sh*tty winter.” Have you considered going south?

      • As opposed to rank amateurs who think they know better.

    • No need to scan Harper’s closet…..he’s as boring and conservative as he appears. You won’t be finding any sex scandals, drug scandals, or instances of theft. He said it himself….he comes from a family of accountants, and he choose to be an econimist instead because he lacked the charisma to follow in his fathers footsteps.
      The only thing in Harper’s closet….are a few dark suits and some shoes.

      • Pretty much true. The guy left virtually zero footprint in Calgary. Before he became a MP, virtually nobody in Calgary had ever heard of the guy. Compare that to a guy like Ralph Klein, and there is no comparison. People like Emily who think there’s some secret motherlode scandal just waiting to be discovered (e.g., texting pictures of his weenie to an intern, snorting lines in a nightclub bathroom, giving the Nazi salute in full jackbooted uniform at a secret White Supremacist Congress) are dreaming in technicolor. But of course, partisan dweebs at the Tyee and the Georgia Straight will never stop searching for that motherlode . . .

        • Indeed. Even the things she mentioned don’t seem to evoke skeletons in the closet. A make-up artist? That’s because the opposition embarrassed him when he made his first trip to Mexico (the Three Amigos visit) and wore (gasp!) clothing that was a little too dark for that kind of climate. This spurred him to get a make-up artist/wardrobe consultant. Kicking a chair? Who cares? Missing relatives? What is she suggesting with that one?

          • PW’s book notes that Harper wore the same outfit Martin did to the previous year’s Three Amigos event. Martin received a…different…reception from the Canadian press than Harper did.

          • “Missing relatives? What is she suggesting with that one?”

            “One day in 1950, Mr. Harper’s grandfather, Harris Harper, a high-school principal in Moncton, disappeared, never to be found. The circumstances have remained obscure. It received a brief mention in William Johnson’s biography of the Prime Minister, but little follow-up.”

            http://www.theglobeandmail.com/globe-debate/a-family-tragedy-that-stephen-harper-has-not-forgotten/article787903/

        • Emily misses the good old days, like back in 2000, when the CBC spent a good portion of an hour long documentary focused on Stockwell Day’s dad.

          • Never saw that one….but I cancelled my subscription to the NatPost when they devoted a section to promoting Stock.

            I was a member of the Reform party……I know exactly what they are. Manning promised to control it, but he didn’t.

            Since then a giant Con game has been going on….in more ways than one.

          • Wish you would cancel McLeans from your reading too

          • Oh is it illegal now in Canada to disagree with the PM?

          • Did I say that?

          • Oh so I can disagree….as long as you don’t read about it?

        • Yeah, I buy the completely boring part. I’ve heard from someone who ought to know that his security detail calls him Hymie [after the robot agent on Get Smart].

      • Well there was that little thing about thinking Mandela a communist terrorist…but hell we all thought odd things at one time or another in another life.

        • So now you’re attributing things said by Rob Anders to Stephen Harper? You guys are getting desperate.

          • Nope. Harper’s view of Mandela seems to have evolved some, as it has with many right wingers. It isn’t a secret you know.

          • Then provide a reputable link.

          • Anders made those comments about Mandela. Harper never did.

          • I didn’t say he made any comments. But Harper was a member of a reform era Conservative group that did say those kind of things. It’s a matter of record. Someone will remember the name of the group, it escapes me right about now. I believe some of the evidence for that came from Murray Dobbin. So you can make your own judgement. But the accusations have never been refuted to my knowledge.

          • Truly. And by the way kcm2, the fact of the matter is that the ANC was an overtly far left-wing organization in its formative years, heavily supported by the Soviets during the Cold War, and heavily influenced by Marxist-Leninist ideology — thus the fact that, for example, Winnie and Nelson (and all ANC members) were in the regular habit of addressing one another as “comrade”.

            And as for the “terrorist” label, have you ever heard of the Church Street bombing?

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Church_Street_bombing
            It’s amazing how so many Western lefties and liberals ignore facts like this. I’m not saying this makes Mandela a bad guy per se. By and large, I think he’s a decent person. But this hagiographic treatment he gets, and this belief among Western lefties and liberals that he is somehow to be exempted from any and all criticism, is a bit much.

      • Economist? Well, he plays one on TV… not buying the act though.

      • Because when you’re not charismatic enough to be an accountant, the obvious career choice is politics. But watch him when he’s doing a Neil Diamond cover – he’s thinks he’s pretty dam cool.

    • The media spent a week fussing over Harper’s handshake with his son back in January 2006. Is that the sort of coverage you now find lacking? The concerted effort to dig up dirt on Harper – any dirt – was absolutely frenetic between 2002 and 2006. The spectacular lack of results is what caused the media to give up on it. The guy is just basically pretty boring. Yet here we are in 2014, and you remain convinced that something evil must be lurking there somewhere, if only the press tried hard enough to find it. He’s not scary anymore sweetheart. That ship sailed years ago, and every last frightened, hand-wringing, hysterical coward was on it. Except for you and Heather Mallick.

      • how about his northern foundation roots ? that’s scary enough.

        • And fabricated nonsense. Unless Rabble is your idea of a solid news source.

          • And do you know what they have in common with all other known hate groups? Stephen Harper was never a member.

          • Source please

          • LOL somebody’s twitter is not a source….it’s not called the Northern Foundation either.

          • It’s not “somebody’s twitter”, it’s the source of the allegation who’s retracting the quote. But you don’t believe ANYBODY who’s not lying about Harper, do you?

          • It’s not the Northern Foundation, Rick…….and you’re on overtime with this topic. LOL

          • Okay, so Harper wasn’t involved with the Northern Foundation or any other white supremacist group.

            Touche! You win!

          • Well see dear….I never said he was. YOU assumed that, not me.

            Your confusion is the hair-on-fire response we get when Harp is sinking in the polls. LOL

          • Dobbin didn’t retract anything, because he never made the allegation in the first place. The allegation first appeared online as a fake quote from one of his books. In fact, none of his books contain any such passage. Not only is the allegation without basis, but it is falsely attributed to someone who never made it.

          • My mistake, you are correct. It’s amazing that Liberals can go around using a quote for the better part of a decade without any of them ever actually picking up the book it was allegedly written in to see it.

            Reason #235234 why you should never trust a Liberal.

          • It’s like their “You won’t recognize this country when I’m through with it.” nonsense. Brian Mulroney said that in 1983, shortly after winning the PC leadership. The Liberals lifted that quote, moved it ahead 20 years, and attributed it to Harper in a cheesy ad – and they still quote it repeatedly online.

          • You are demanding a source to disprove an already false allegation? You made more sense when you demanded the media investigate Harper’s non-existent missing relatives.

          • What say you, Emily and debacherous harper? Care to withdraw your false accusation? Or are you going to continue to spout BS?

          • What false accusation? Why is it none of you can read?

          • Dobbin never “retracted” anything, because he never made the accusation in the first place. Someone lifted a quote from his book and inserted Harper’s name into it, then circulated it on the Internet. Not only was the allegation false, it was falsely attributed to Dobbin. Why it only took him a decade to clear this up I have no idea.

      • My post was quite clear, and nothing to do with ‘dirt’…..that’s a Con specialty.

        We know nothing about him at all….and it can’t be papered over by saying he’s ‘boring’.

        • Actually, we know everything about him, whether we want to hear it or not. I’ve never seen someone’s personal affectations put under the microscope like that before. The guy puts his elbows on the table for a few minutes, it spawns 5 different columns in the G & M over 3 days. He’s had more biographies – none authorized – written about him in the past decade than Chretian has had in the past half century. Yet you don’t know enough about him?

          • I repeat, we know nothing about him….

          • I repeat…
            Mindless repetition is what we expect from you. It is also a symptom of autism spectrum disorders. Since you’re so fond of taking cheap-shots at autistic people every chance you get, I’d be remiss if I didn’t point that out.

          • LOL just because you see your numbers and leader going down is no reason to attack me.

            Hair-on-fire memos must have gone out this morning.

            If you have no answers….you have no answers.

          • Why would the numbers cause panic? Look at Rob Ford’s polling numbers. Do you really think the numbers means something? If they do, why are they so wrong so often? They can’t predict anything accurately in terms of election results when an election is imminent so how could they predict something midterm?

          • When the numbers were down for the Libs, it was headline news to Cons.

            Now the Cons are down….suddenly the numbers don’t matter.

            LOL

          • I believe it is called confirmation bias and all political partisans, conservative. liberal and those who lean to the extremes revel in it. It is a game everyone plays but the polls have had very little success in actually predicting many of the important election outcomes.

          • No, it’s just called being a Con

          • Well then the whole country must be Cons….as a matter of fact I saw where you called JanBc a Con. Wow!

          • Okay, lay your conspiracy theory on us…why do we allegedly “know nothing about him” despite the fact that he has been in public eye for many years???

          • My original post is still here. I said it all there.

          • The CBC journalists and Aaron Wherry are right wing and haven’t tried to dig up dirt on Harper?

          • Nothing to do with ‘dirt’…..that’s a Con idea.

          • . . . because the insidious alien pod that has taken over his body has not yet been revealed?

      • “The guy is just basically pretty boring.”
        The banality of evil is quite revealing.

        • Yes, Stephen Harper is pure evil, the devil incarnate. He eats puppies for breakfast and hates Canada and he’s trying to destroy Canada and he’s mean and he hates seniors and loves big oil and thinks business owners aren’t Satan.

          Thanks for the excellent analysis.

          • I said banal.
            The devil doesn’t exist but if he did he would be far from banal from what the superstitious have written about him. Also eating puppies for breakfast is pretty out there for a banal act.
            Go check the dictionary Tricky Ricky and then you won’t open your mouth and remove all doubt about your foolishness.

          • Evil, evil, evil!!!! Careful kids, Stephen Harper might be coming for you!!!! He’s a REALLY REALLY SCARY GUY!!!!!

          • are you having a seizure?

          • Yes. Are you experiencing drug induced hallucinations?

          • No as it happens, but the fact that you think I am might be explained by your admitted issue with seizures,
            You should pop along and see the quack before your foolishness becomes terminal.

      • Harper’s closet has never been scanned….chair kicking…

        Yes Emily, by all means, let’s “open the closet” on the infamous “chair kick”.

        What model of chair was it?
        Fabric or wood?
        Folding or solid?
        How far did it travel? What was the arc and trajectory?

        Maclean’s, I demand 700 words on this topic immediately

        • WHEN WILL THE PRIME MINISTER COME CLEAN ABOUT THIS CHAIR? WHEN, I ASK YOU???

  7. Great analysis Colby. I was finding it rather hilarious that certain segments of the Canadian media were doing write-ups about Harper’s retirement literally the day after he publicly stated he was going to lead the Conservatives in the next election.

    Left-wing journo’s are clearly running out of ways of slagging Harper if they’re resorting to reporting on his retirement when he’s not retiring. Maybe they think they can trick the electorate into believing that Harper’s retiring. I honestly don’t know what they’re thinking.

    What I find funniest is those “analysts” who think Harper will quit because he’s scared of losing to Justin Trudeau. Has Harper ever been scared of an election campaign? It seems to me he relishes them, even more so when he’s being told he can’t win. I think Harper looks forward to being able to humiliate Trudeau in a campaign and show the country what a light-weight Trudeau really is. It will also secure the destruction of the Liberal Party of Canada.

    The one who’ll face the real test in 2015 is Trudeau. His party’s been bleeding seats for the last 4 elections in a row. If he can’t reverse that trend, the Liberal Party of Canada will likely not exist for the 2019 election. And nothing would make Stephen Harper happier than putting and end to the Trudeau name and the Liberal Party in Canadian politics.

    • I don’t think Harper’s going to resign either, but I’m going to quibble.

      ‘Left-wing journo’s are clearly running out of ways of slagging Harper if they’re resorting to reporting on his retirement when he’s not retiring. ‘

      Actually, there were a few right-of-centre commentators (I’m thinking of Ivison) who were musing about Harper’s future too. Further, just because somebody thinks there are some compelling reasons why Harper might step down doesn’t constitute ‘slagging’. I’ve found that most of the columns that have suggested Harper might step down haven’t necessarily been critical of Harper, but they’ve laid out why it might be Harper’s best option. They’ve also cited Conservative sources. And I’ve also read lefty columnists who’ve argued Harper won’t retire.

      Second, Harper’s statements that he’s not going to retire can’t be taken at face value. OF COURSE he’s going to say ‘I’m not going to retire.’ What else is he going to say? ‘Yeah, I’m going to step down in a couple of months’? I’m sure if you asked Dalton McGuinty a week before he retired whether or not he was going to retire, he’d have told you no, too. It’s only natural to play those kinds of intentions close to the vest.

      I’m confident that Harper would be successful in another election campaign — but if you’re going to tell me he doesn’t have some work to do, you’re nuts. I don’t think he’s scared of losing to Justin Trudeau, but I do think that Harper doesn’t want to come out of the next election with anything less than what he’s got right now. Minority government? Eff that. OPPOSITION? Eff that. If he wants to make gains, or even hold his own, he’s going to have to reverse the trend line of the past 12 months. Every poll has him trailing. If the trend line doesn’t start to change early on in 2014, it wouldn’t surprise me one bit to hear he’s pulling the chute. And that’s not a criticism of Harper to say that — just logic. Unless he KNOWS he can hold his own in the next election, why the hell would he stick around?

      • Fair enough. But regarding the polls you also have to remember that these are midterm polls, and the Liberal leader hasn’t defined any policy that they stand for yet, with the exception of legal weed. Harper’s seen these numbers while leading before. The Liberals polling numbers jumped when they put in Dion and Ignatieff as leaders also. How’d that end up for them?

        Sure, Harper’s got work to do to win the next election, but I think he looks forward to that work. He understands the middle class in this country far better than either of the opposition leaders. Mulcair only talks to unionized middle class workers, and the activist class. While Trudeau’s got his finger on the pulse of the urban elites who like to talk about the middle class but have never actually lived a middle class life.

        • I think a related problem is, the Liberals and the NDP would both love to spend the next election running against Harper and doing nothing else. Problem is, they have to deal with one another too. That’s the rub.

          • That’s most likely Harper’s best hope – that neither pull ahead of the other. I’m just curious if that happens whether coalition rides the range again at that point.

          • Yep, it’s going to depend on seat count efficiency, which it turn will be affected by leader performance and what are seen as the top 1-3 issues of the campaign. If anything resembling Trudeaumania 2.0 takes hold, Harper’s toast.

          • Agree. But i think there’s still an outside chance Trudeau and Mulcair will bury the hatchet[ hopefully not in each other] if they are close late. Which raises the specter of coalition or cooperation of some sort. Unless Harper rehabs himself i think they have him by the balls this time.

          • If I had to bet money today, I’d bet that Harper will lose. I think the most likely result is Liberal minority — which means Harper is out.

          • Well you and i bet Dix would win too. So i’m hoping for better luck this time. Anything can happen.

          • Very true. Though I don’t feel like I’m a part of some uniquely blinkered minority in calling that BC election wrong. Like Harold Ballard said about going to hell: at least I’ve got plenty of company.

          • Did he say that…it’s worth remembering.

            I think we called it right, except for the bit where we were wrong. But in fairness who thought the ndp would be that clueless or Clark that astute and ruthless…not me anyway.

    • “The one who’ll face the real test in 2015 is Trudeau.”

      I rarely agree with you about anything, but I agree with this. Will he have enough to prevent the vote-splitting that would keep Harper in power? Because that’s the main question of the next election if things keep going down their current path. I think we’re going to end up with another minority government; the question will be who gets to lead it.

      • He can’t prevent vote splitting unless the Liberals and NDP run as a coalition. He needs to win back Liberal voters who switched to the NDP, plain and simple. Right now, it seems that he’s more interested in courting voters from the CPC. Will be interesting to see how that plays out.

        • He needs to win them from both camps – and if polling numbers can be trusted (and that seems to be a big “if” these days) he is doing just that.

          I know he can’t prevent vote-splitting;it’s the point at which the split occurs that will tell the tale.

  8. “Two forms of wishful thinking are at work here, and are mutually interacting: the cravings of Harper’s enemies, and the interest of reporters in good copy.” Truer words when it comes to Harper will never be spoken. They can’t beat him electorally and so they try to malign his reputation. Now lefties have at it.

    • Am I missing something? Yes, there are people who hate Harper and want him gone. But since when is outlining reasons why Harper might retire “maligning his reputation?” Sheesh. I don’t think he is going to retire either, but I do recognize why he might retire, and it’s not because I think he’s a bad guy. And how does speculating about Harper’s future harm him? Either he’ll resign, or he won’t. Great PMs retire. Horrible PMs retire. Journos will speculate about when they will retire. Twas ever thus.

    • Ah…back on the old nothing is ever true if we keep winning elections are we? Or more likely you never got off. You do realize what your logic implies about say, Chretien, don’t you.

  9. It amuses me to read all these analyzes from pundits who seem to try to convince us that they know whether Harper is going to quit or not.
    I certainly do not know if he is going to quit. But neither does anyone else (that’s you, Colby). I suspect even Harper himself is undecided and everything depends on what happens next (e.g. whether charges are laid in the Senate scandal and how the voters react to the charges, etc.).
    Another thing that amuses me is the claim, as made in this article, that Harper will not quit because he had already assured us that he would be leading his Party into the next election.
    Need I point out that currently Harper’s credibility is very low? Some would even suggest it is underwater. Just think of the contradictory claims he had made in the ongoing Senate scandal (Wright resigned, was fired, was an honorable man, ran a deception behind his back, etc.). Then there were the infamous significant lowballing of the F35 costs ($9B which somehow became $15B which still significantly differed from other estimates) and then the denial that he had ever claimed Canada had a contract protecting it from rising costs of the jets (despite numerous public records of his having actually claiming he had a contract).
    Just beats me how intelligent people would still believe anything that comes out of this man’s mouth anymore.

    • The F35 mess having been initially started by the Liberals, please don’t forget…..

      • Yes, the Libs started the F35 project, but please tell me, what has that got to do with Harper’s credibility? Did they somehow make him utter those contradictory statements about the F35s?

        • You do understand that the pundits have to eat right.

          They likely had a meeting mid-December, about the thin gruel they would have to comment on for the upcoming month and hatched a plan where some would speculate about retirement, some would pile on and then a clever few like Colby could write columns about how ridiculous that all was.

          • I certainly hope the pundits eat right — perhaps that way, they will all live long enough to find which side was right, those predicting that he will go or those who say he will not. lol
            Seriously, these pundits need not worry about lack of materials to write about. How old is this year — 10 days? Look at the new “scandals” that have been unearthed: (a) Strahl’s triple dipping (SIRC, Enbridge lobbyist, China lobbyist), (b) half of the country’s spy watchdogs having ties to the oil business, and (c) Calandra’s family troubles (seems he omitted certain juicy details that he had not told us about in QP).

          • I notice you didn’t mention Mac Harb’s latest. Wonder why.

          • Maybe cuz the post is about SH staying or going?

          • Thanks. I was about to say exactly the same thing. But then, that is perhaps why Harper is in power: mention a few hot button words .. Liberals … Adscam … and presto, he gets the votes of a certain segment of the population.lol

          • Yes, it’s so silly and wrong for anyone to notice when Liberals commit fraud. Anybody who notices that or considers it important is a mouth-breathing conbot. On the other hand, noticing and commenting on Conservative wrongdoing shows that you are enlightened and progressive.

          • Actually, to be truly progressive you need to take situations like repaying taxpayers for illegitimate expenses and turn it into some great offense.

            I imagine the conversation goes like this:
            Liberal #1: “Did you hear Nigel Wright helped Duffy repay taxpayers?”

            Liberal #2: “Repaying taxpayers is not the Liberal way. Call in the RCMP.”

          • If you’re relying on the government to provide you with knowledge, you’ve already lost.

          • I’m relying on the government to – at minimum – not destroy hard if not impossible to replace information. Read the article, dimwit.

          • No no Keith. You must have forgot your tps at the door. They’re seeking to make us a resource super power. Can’t let science get in the way of that. Roll up them dumpsters eh.

          • God forbid we should develop or exploit our natural resources. That’s not The Canadian Way. What has natural resource development ever done for Canada anyway?

          • God forbid you should appear as stupid as some of the other con half wits on here OB. You know as well as i do there’s no justification for throwing out fisheries records or muzzling scientist just because your policy prioritizes resource extraction.[ that was where this started]
            On the economic side i don’t expect JT to be that radically different than Harper, but i’m hopeful he will respect the process, which has always been my principle beef with Harper. If he thinks we are over regulated on the environmental side he should run on it openly or live with the process like eveyone else has before him.

          • And where does that leave us?[ he asks in mock outrage]

      • 1. Harper has been in power over 8 years now so why still point the finger at the liberals. 2. If the Liberals made a mess of the F35, Harper has had more than ample time to fix.

        You can only blame the liberals to a point and we”re way past that point.

  10. I would argue that the key to any legacy is knowing that one should quit when one is ahead. The only other possibly is to go down under circumstances of someone else’s making.
    Think about it, what would it do to Harper’s reputation and ego, to know he lost a majority government to one of his opponents? LOL

    • …unless he makes a comeback. Harper’s relatively young (assuming he loses in 2015, he’ll be younger than previous PMs when they stepped down/lost power). If losing to Trudeau hurts his ego, imagine how much of an ego boost it would be if he resigned from politics only to return like a phoenix and defeat Trudeau in a post-2015 election.

      • Always possible. But what Colby didn’t say is Harper does have a bit of a history as a quitter of sorts. There are a number of incidents where he basically decided to take his ball and go home when opposed, most notably in the coalition crisis where he had to be threatened by his own caucus to fight back against the Dion coup.
        Where i think your scenario is realistic is if youngish Trudeau clearly makes a hash of governing, which is why a number of liberals think a minority win for him might conceivably be worse then just coming a very close second. Personally i think he should go for it, since you never know when you might get the chance again, but that’s just me.

        • I guess there are 2 types of quitters. One that gives up because the task at hand is too great, and the other that gives up because he really wants something and the other party won’t budge. He tends to be the latter. For example, he tried to convince Joe Clark that a merger of their parties was the best way to go. When Clark refused, Harper gave up until the PCs chose a new leader. At that point, he tried again and succeeded to merge the parties.
          As for the coalition crisis, from what I understood, the caucus was split. Polls showed tremendous support for the CPC during the “coalition crisis.” One part of caucus was just daring the PM to call an election, to see Dion & co. trounced in the polls. The others felt that this was unwise. The entire coalition crisis is not quite as black-and-white as you seem to suggest.

          • Don’t know about your last point. But Wells clearly states[ TLIPM] that it was a trio of powerful Cons[ led by Jay Hill??] who laid it on the line for him – don’t fight this, you’re done. I imagine they had the ear of caucus to say that. Harper’s view was that they should allow the thing to happen and that he would pick up the pieces 6 months down the road. Which if i may toot my horn is what i thought he might do if he was as good a strategist as legend says. So that kind of thinking does support your initial point about quitters.

      • There will be no comeback, only fire then ashes which I would personally spread to the winds given the opportunity. Harper will fail, run then hide and lick his wounds like a good dog should!
        He has done nothing but dissapoint during his time but his time is up! Time for some fresh, new, and yes, young blood to take care of our beautiful country. Our Canada!

    • What convinces me you might be right is where Trudeau is in the polls right now, basically without doing anything. Surely this should be read as a reaction against Harper’s style as much as anything else, more then a straight up endorsement of JT? Although the fact the part of the public that pays attention has chosen to park themselves here rather then with Tom should really be a concern to the dippers.
      Much will depend on what Trudeau eventually does when he’s ready of course. Still lots of opportunity for a flame out, but the odds are shortening on that. Your move Steve.

    • After being in power for what will be 11 years, I think that his reputation will be fine no matter what happens.

  11. Good article. But I’m curious if anyone can tell me how to distinguish a “fake religion” from a “real” religion. It might be the number of believers, or how long it’s been around, but it certainly couldn’t be the content. On that basis, what’s the difference?

    • My religion is the one true religion. I read it in a book once.

    • Plus he’s a Beatles fan, and they went out at the top of their game. If only other classic rock bands had done so too . . .

  12. What other choice is there? The Trudeau kid is the Liberals’s Mesia #4 ace up their sleeve. Why do they keep anointing losers? The ex-drama teacher hasn’t done anything other than making phony speeches at charity dinners charging outrageous fees paid on the taxpayers dime. He should have been at Question Period instead reading his scripts.
    It’s going to be another one pony three ring circus giving Harper another mandate.

    • Ah…not that we should bet the farm on polls, but that kid is well out ahead right now in case you missed it. Every time i read one of these the kid’s a loser posts i imagine JT’s team is chalking up another supremely complacent dolt on the board who wont see it coming.

      • The only poll that counts is on voting day. Justhink Trudeau, Fuddle Duddle and Just Watch Me. Daddy Trudeau was the worst PM in Canadian history who gave Canadians the middle finger with his hug-a-thug laws still polluting the Justice System and his Bill of Rights gave thugs more rights than law-abiding-citizens.

        • Bill of rights was Dief…but you were ranting…carry on.

    • How exactly does one make a “phony” speech?

    • First of all being under 50 does NOT make you a “kid”. Second, Mr. Trudeau isn’t a loser, as shown by the polls & third he is all round a better human being than any of the current cabinet ministers and Harper combined.
      Do we always have to have a 1%er atomton ruling our country? I think it’s time we took another long hard look at what Canada NEEDS! Not what all the other 1%ers want!

      • Every sitting MP is a 1%er.

        But are you aware that Trudeau was a 1%er the day he turned 18? I find it funny how Liberals seem to think they can get Canadians to empathize with Trudeau when he had a multi-million dollar trust fund handed over to him on his 18th birthday and then spent the next 20 years “broadening his horizons” before realizing at the tender age of 40 that he might want to get a real job.

        Nothing says “Joe Everyman” like an elitist trust fund baby playboy, right?

        • Of course I’m aware. I’m not blind or stupid but apparently you are both. Calling Mr. Trudeau a trust fund playboy shows how very little you actually know about the man!
          FYI; I, age 49 have NEVER VOTED. Why? Because until now there hasn’t been anyone, liberal or otherwise, that I considered worthy of my vote!
          Maybe you need to do a little more research about the man hmmm?

          • I know all there is to know about the guy. He’s a trust fund baby, plain and simple. He then realized he could trade on his family name to become a politician, despite the fact that he had no experience in the field.

          • My daughter, age 25 & and a recent grad in political science, magna cum laude no less says: “oh yeah, a playboy that spent the better part of his 20s creating political awareness around the globe. Im sure im not the only person that he touched with his documentaries. In fact hes one of the reasons i concentrated my political science studies in international relations. Your old ass generation may think hes nothing more than a name and a trust fund, but anyone who has actually seen the work hes done knows that he will be a prime minister to rival obama in terms of revitalizing the reputation of canada and the engagement of canadians in politics.”

          • I know all…

            Is that you in there god?[ jeez i hope not, or we're all fu*ked]

          • Wrong,
            Trudeau junior traded on the family name in the speaking business. DOUBLED the price AFTER he got his nose in the PUBLIC TROUGH.

            Good work if you are born into the Public Trough.

          • Yes, Justin is dreamy. He’s the first dreamy politician to come along in your life time, so of course he should be your first.

          • Maybe he can get Lena Dunham to do an ad for him, too.

          • So exactly what is it about “the man” that has you willing to finally cast a vote? Is it his sharp intellect? His altruism and financial generosity? It is his history of making pithy comments? Is it about marijuana legalization? Is it his hair?

        • Actually he didn’t just get it handed to him at 18, but then facts aren’t your thing are they.

          • Okay, then when was he handed control of his hefty trust fund?

          • You really don’t remember do you? I was on the same post where someone posted the fact that Harper used to chum about with a group of cons who held a very different view of Mandela then Harper currently has.[ i'm pretty sure you jumped all over it as a smear, and outrage on Harper's good name]
            No matter, unlike you i think people can change over time.
            What bothers me about Harper is he doesn’t even acknowledge his opinion of Mandela evolved. He jumps on the bandwagon like so many other cons. Typical Harper, it’s sickening.

          • Okay and does it bother you that the government outside of Canada that Justin Trudeau most admires is China’s dictatorship? Hello!

          • Hello yourself. I don’t see what that has to do with this comment. But he didn’t say that and you know it. What he said[ very poorly imo] was that he admired the way they can change things quickly. It was a very strange comment really. O f course they can change things quickly – but that’s beside the point really.

          • Quit lying that he didn’t say it. He was asked which country’s form of government he most admired, and he responded with China. All the nuance in the world won’t change that.

          • Yes he did, and it was in the context of how quick they could respond to policy change – in this case environmental. But you don’t do context, or facts or even rational do you?

          • So some leaders are to be held responsible for the things they say but others aren’t because they in your opinion expressed themselves poorly and meant something else? We Canadians should know which leaders are nasty and which ones are just poor at expressing themselves, is that it?

          • Spin it how you like, but i didn’t say that. I said clearly i can see Harper might have evolved away from Mandela is a terrorist and or communist, and i clearly said JT’s comment was dumb. What more do you want?
            In case you weren’t paying attention JT got a lot of flack for that comment.

          • I want the rocket scientist to be head of the Liberal Party of Canada instead of a male model.

          • It would have cost you nothing to become a supporter and vote for him then[ Garneau] Too late now.

          • I don’t think Mr. Garneau lost by one vote. Do you think if JT loses in 2015, they will be smart enough to put Marc Garneau in as leader?

          • No. If Trudeau loses badly it may be the end of the LPC, depending on how well the ndp do. In any case there will be enormous pressure to merge the two parties or even form a new centrist party.
            But I really think you’re underestimating how gifted Trudeau is as a politician. He is very inexperienced but he has what it takes. I don’t expect him to get a majority unless Harper implodes, but he has a shot at a minority, at worst opp leader.

          • I’m with you on that. But I’ll take either over Harper.

          • There always seems to be room for one more in the “I HATE HARPER WAGON”

          • And there never seems to be any shortage of room for the i’m with stupid brigade either.

          • If you remember so much about it, then produce the damn link! For someone who likes to crow on and on about “evidence” and “proof” all the time, you sure don’t seem to ever provide any.

            Harper was at Mandela’s funeral. Justin Trudeau took a pass. Which one has more respect for Mandela?

          • I’ll give you a clue dimwit. It was buried in a Gatehouse piece on Trudeau. But it was rather long so i can understand if you couldn’t hang in there, ore remember what he did say.
            And do you remember being told[repeatedly] that JT gave up his right to go for Cottler? I do, although god know why i bothered.

          • JT gave up his seat so one of Mandela’s loyal defenders and advocates – a man who was one of Mandela’s lawyers while imprisoned – could go. Seems an incredibly decent and magnanimous gesture. One that I would say puts him at least on par with Harper, who pretty much had to go unless he wanted to deliberately insult South Africa.

          • It’s here at macleans…now go fetch it yourself.

        • “Every sitting MP is a 1%er.”

          Not unless they have a second source of income. A regular MP’s salary is $160,200 [http://canadaonline.about.com/od/houseofcommons/a/salaries-canadian-members-parliament.htm] and minimum earnings required to be a 1%er is
          $191,100 [http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/who-are-canada-s-top-1-1.1703321].

          But hey, Rick – don’t let facts get in your way. After all, they haven’t before…

      • Are you aware that Rob Ford isn’t a loser either as shown in the polls?

      • Trudeau? No thanks, Canada already has a hereditary monarch.

      • I don’t live in Toronto but If I had a choice on who was to govern my city – Rob Ford or Trust Fund Trudeau. I would pick Rob Ford every time.

        The Trudeau’s, both Senior and Junior, have turned a blind eye to corruption in Quebec. (more federal money for Quebec)

        Rob Ford seems to stand in the way of the elite who feel it is their right to feed at the public trough.

        Rob Ford has personal issues but to the best of my knowledge he does not turn a blind eye to serious corruption nor is he big on wasting taxpayers money.

        I believe the Trudeau Family business is the PUBLIC TROUGH.

      • I’m pretty sure Trudeau is one of the 1%

      • Better human beings don’t charge charities $20 grand as a way of getting around Canada’s campaign finance laws.

  13. Oh geez Colby! Way to suck the soul of leftist Harper hater!

    PLEASE, do not bring common sense to this conversation! ; )

    • Is that the tp of the day Claudia? Doesn’t it give you even the remotest tinge of shame to be parroting it?

      • Shame, about what?!

        That your hatred for Harper is so blind that you miss to see common sense?!

        Dude, by all means, go on hating!

        • It’s his specialty, it’s all he knows.

      • Lady, by all mean keep on shamelessly shilling. I guess on balance i’d rather be thought a “Harper hater” when i think it’s justified. I honestly can’t see the justification for being an outright shill. I mean “leftist” are you an adult at all?

  14. “Why would a Conservative Prime Minister quit when it’s so easy to run against the media?” Maybe because, it’s only effective with the base.

    • That base seems to grow each and every election. And it was enough to get him a majority last time around.

      • Right, and we’ve seen the base shrink back like this before haven’t we, just before every election. Time to pull your head out of the sand. Your man has a lot of work to do.

        • Nobodies claiming he doesn’t have his work cut out for him. But he had his work cut out for him in 2006, 2008 and 2011, and he seems quite up to the task. I wouldn’t be surprised if Harper had most of the 2015 campaign planned out back in 2006 either.

          • Au contraire, you claim it all the time…trust fund Trudeau will go nowhere, he’s just trading on his name…no worries.

          • Because the competition will be between Harper and Mulcair. Trudeau and the Liberals will have about as much influence in the race as Lizzy May and the Greens, or whoever ends up leading the Bloc, if they even run candidates again.

          • Good luck with that.I’m sure the liberals are perfectly happy for core con like you to keep on thinking that way.

          • Given how he didn’t see the 2008 recession coming until after just about everyone else on the planet, if his 2015 plans are based on the crystal ball he was gazing into in 2006 I’d say his slide has only just begun…

      • -
        Rick don’t say things like that.
        The HATE HARPER crowd will have breakdowns.

    • Does any serious person in Canada believe anything the media tells them anymore?
      Fat women on hunger strikes?

  15. I can’t wait for Mr. Harper to mop the floor with Jughead so I can stand by and laugh my arse off…

    • Zoolander will give him the old Blue Steel pose!
      Harper might stroke out from laughing, but that’s the only danger.
      Mind you the media have already decided that Justin has won all the election debates.

  16. “Stephen Harper has no reason to quit while he’s ahead”

    Did you do the title CC? It just seems strangely incongruous to me and out of sync with the rest of your piece. The reason many are speculating he’s going or going to be gone soon is precisely because all indicators are that he IS NOT ahead, and hasn’t been for some time now. You seem to be saying he’s the best they’ve got, which is a valid point.
    Edit: i suppose you could be linking that to your big finish about running against the media. But as Crazy train wreck points out, that’s only for the base, which is shrinking anyway at the moment. It wont do much for the all important swing voters. Harper’s horizon is down to minority territory at best[ still some way to go of course] Looking forward to your speculation on how that sits with him.

    • No, I didn’t “do” the “tittle”.

      • Good for you. I did think they had others “do” that ‘title” stuff for you guys. Why is that by the way? It is your piece, and imo it spoils it…er, takes away from its authenticity rather.

  17. Harper is way ahead, in corruption, in turning old friends into enemies, in turning off Canadians. Yup Cosh, he’s a real leader.

  18. Other than what Nite-Owl said, Harper is behind…in the polls, with the economy (increased unemployment, decreased investments) and even if he and Flaherty balance the budget, they inherited one in the first place and put this country in unprecedented deficits! Harper couldn’t predict the recession! He lied to us about Afghanistan, billion dollar planes that couldn’t fly in the Arctic, boats that cost millions more than what other countries paid for, has a PMO so corrupt that he consistently lied about one, no 2, no 3, no…. people who were involved in the Duffy affair… Must I go on. No! Harper must go out!

    • Wow, that’s really impressive, how you manage to string together stale partisan talking points into a post. Shakespeare’s got nothin’ on you.

    • Don’t be alarmed folks it is just another of the HATE HARPER club.
      We can only hope their lives improve so the hate level can subside.

  19. Speaking for myself, I hope Harper stubbornly clings to power even if the Cons continue to slide in the polls. As Prime Minister and Leader of the CPC, he’s one of the opposition’s most valuable assets when motivating their own support at election time.

    • …said the Liberals in 2008…and 2011…

      • Go right on living in the past. I hope the whole Con party does, too. In the meantime, Stevie’s “best-before” date has expired.

        • Coming from a thoroughly objective, non-partisan observer such as you, that’s huge.

          • Thank you.

        • In the meantime, Stevie’s “best-before” date has expired

          …said the Liberals in 2008…and 2011…

          Who’s living in the past?

          • Um…those who continue to partake of a brand that’s past it’s “best before” date? The rest of us move on.

          • Well technically you are, unless 08 and ’11 are somehow now in Harper’s future.

          • They’ve actually been saying since 2004, which is now an entire decade of it. It’s something like that global warming which we’ve been waiting 17 years for.

        • Or at least that is the media narrative….

          • OK, thanks. If you are one of much-mythologized CPC “base”, please go on whistling past the graveyard. The consistently declining numbers are meaningless and are nothing more than a figment of “progressives”, the opposition, the lamestream media, the pollsters, the unions, academia, the urban elites, the….

    • Yes, I am sure people thought that about BC premier Christy Clark right before she stole the election despite polls that predicted she would tank. Not to mention the polls that were so wrong about the Alberta election. Sometimes voters are more comfortable with the devil they know and I am just cringing to think of the ads the CPC is putting together of Mr. Trudeau full of his own gaffes. Not to mention that the NDP is going to go after him as well because there is no love lost between he and Mulclair.

      • Tell Harper. We need him to buy into the same rationalizations while the Cons continue to slide in the polls.

        • What do you think of Rob Ford’s numbers?

          • How is that relevant here? What do you think of Obama’s?

          • Speaks to the accuracy of polls and whether polling numbers are reflective of election outcomes.

          • Pollsters themselves would never suggest that polling numbers this far out from a 2015 election are reliably predictive of election outcomes.

            Why would I?

          • Hmm…these current polls certainly do create a big stir among journalists and the partisans considering they are not “predictive of election outcomes.” The odd thing is that polls the week of big elections are often not any more successful in predicting the outcomes either yet we seem to forget that when they are polling “our way”.

          • Yeah…and your point is?

          • …….

          • This little digression into the reliability of polls seems marginally, if at all, relevant to my initial comment, regarding my personal hopes for Harper’s career choices in the immediate future. Did I not say I hope Harper himself disregards the polls?

          • Your comment was with regard to what Harper will do “even if the Cons continue to slid in the polls.” Thus the truth about the reliability of polls in predicting election outcomes and the obvious confirmation bias of partisans of every party in weighing how relevant polls are, is certainly more than marginally important to whether Harper will consider resigning. Your personal hopes aside, the article is about the reality of the pundits predictions of Harper’s plans to resign.

          • So let’s all hope Harper ignores the polls!

          • Polls are funny things. They can really hurt the party who is predicted to win because their supporters don’t bother to go out and vote thinking they have a slam dunk. My guess is Harper never counts on polls even when they show he is ahead.

          • And yet legends abound, regarding the CPC’s highly-calibrated ability to identify and measure niches of support and to mine those micro-markets for money and votes. They’re not doing doing that by studying chicken entrails.

          • Why do you think the CPC appeals to minorities and older voters. Those people actually do get and vote no matter what the polls say. It is the younger crowd who are hanging out on the internet whose opinions don’t materialize into votes.

          • As a broad generalization, I have no argument with that. But I suspect the Cons have an even more sophisticated tracking system (“internal polling”) to identify specific target groups that are most susceptible to their pitch, and to figure out precisely where voters in those groups itch, so that they can pretend to scratch in just the right spots.

            My point is that, while all parties reflexively claim to disregard polling data, the Cons’ strategies suggest they (more than the others) have refined polling to a utilitarian science.

            I agree with you that Harper is probably inclined to dismiss polls that are incongruent with his own political intuition but I sense that he’s made some spectacularly bad strategic decisions in the last year and that, the longer he’s in office, the less acute his own political antennae are.

            IOW, he may stubbornly continue to disregard polling data from all directions suggesting that, for him, the gig’s over.

            And, as I said in my original comment, I hope he does. He’s becoming a gift to the opposition.

          • I am not sure that it is only in the last year that Harper has made “spectacularly bad strategic decisions.” Surely the decision to try to end the per vote subsidy when he only had a minority government was his worst ever strategic decision. After surviving that, he must have the confidence that he personally can cope through pretty much any political crisis, whether it finishes his political career or not. I am not sure if he is still hungry enough to fight a big battle but I cannot see him giving up before the 2015 election unless the party or his family asks him to stand down.

          • Astute analysis, IMO…I agree and fervently hope you’re right.

          • I try not to. It depresses me to think that many stupid people could live in such close proximity to me…

          • Don’t get too depressed. It is just possible that those who are polling as supporting Ford won’t vote for him while in the ballot booth or won’t even make it to the ballot booth to vote at all. That is exactly what has happened on many occasions in the past. It is apparently quite a bit easier to verbalize an intention to vote in a certain way than it is to follow through on the intention. This is completely logical but luckily for polling companies and journalists the public is blind to this when their party is polling well.

  20. I see the Hate Harper crowd is out is full force.

    Anything they can to spew their hate.

    Let us all hope their personal lives will soon take a turn for the better and they won’t see such a need for the hate spew.

    • Well? If Harper wasn’t so hateful, no-one would hate him, would they not?

      • I am not sure of your logic. By all accounts Justin Trudeau is everything amiable but he has his share of haters as well.

        • Good point. Über partisans aren’t entirely rational. I don’t “hate” Harper because I think him evil or a particularly bad man. I do however think him an overly divisive and partisan politician who governs narrowly and dishonestly in the main for those who favour Conservativism.

          • How you describe Harper is how many older Albertans described PET. They thought he was very smart but they felt he governed dishonestly for the good of central Canada to the detriment of the rest of the country, the west especially.

          • Much as i loved old Pierre i find that fair comment.[ you need to give Trudeau some allowance for context though. In 1980 he simply did not need AB. That's simply a fact of our dumb FPTP system]
            I have a theory which i’m sure most folks think is nuts; but there is a weird symmetry between Harper and Pet despite their being polar opposites ideologically. In some ways their methods were/are similar. I’m convinced that no matter what he says, Harper has made a careful study of the man he says he despises and incorporated some important features into his political tool kit.
            Where i think they truly differ is in that Trudeau for all his arrogance believed govt can make peoples lives better, for that reason he respected process in a way Harper doesn’t even pretend to.You might even say he loved process – witness the amount of time he spent obssessed by constitutional confabs. Essentially Trudeau was a rational democrat in ways that Harper barely pays lip service to.
            Of course i think Trudeau was a visionary, if utterly ruthless and hard as nails one. Harper i think doesn’t measure up to his knees by comparison. But i can see how someone dedicated to Conservatism might see Harper’s faults as being necessary in a liberal country – i don’t.

          • I would be very interested to read any quote where Harper said he “despised PET” because his first boss in Alberta said that when Harper arrived from the east (Toronto), Harper “worshiped” PET. PET was PM from the time Harper was 9 until he was 25. Harper was a Young Liberal prior to coming to Alberta. According to this same boss, he arrived here with very “eastern attitudes.”
            I am certain you are correct about Harper incorporating many of PET’s traits into his own leadership practices. I don’t think it is so much that PET had different motives but that PET had a lot of personal charisma whereas Harper is a very shy person and the other issue is that times have changed drastically. People are not willing to be controlled by a paternalistic leader. Otherwise, the two men are very similar and they evoke similar strong responses from both their fans and their detractors. People either love them or hate them. PET was not quick to resign either.
            It is fascinating how you see Canada as a “liberal country” as though that is not a social construction but a pre-ordained reality. Very interesting.

          • I don’t know if he ever used the word “despised”. not publicly anyway. There is a op ed he wrote in 2000 [globe or star] that is particularly mean spirited since the guy wasn’t yet cold in his grave.

            I never said it was pre ordained at all. Please don’t put words in my mouth. I don’t see Canada as a “Liberal” country[ capital L] Just in the traditional[ or social sense] sense. I can comfortably vote for a Liberal govt nationally and perhaps an ndp one with the right leader[ Layton possibly, but not Mulcair] whereas you i’d guess might be comfortable voting for the PCs in AB if they have an honest leader. I just see us as being barely on both sides of a line which most voters crowd anyway.
            If we had a PR electoral system for instance i’m pretty sure social Conservatives[ and hard lefties] would always form a minority. Since we don’t we end up with odd govts like this one if the leader is skilled[ or crafty] enough to convince enough Canadians they aren’t extreme. Harper is certainly skilled, but he’s also changing this country in ways that i think the majority of Canadians would not approve if they were aware it was happening. Which explains why he does so much in the dark and in secret.

      • Circular logic…

    • The vast majority of Canadians hate Harpo the Clown, this will be proven in 2015 when he and his corrupt band of gong show rejects are given the boot!

  21. In case it needs pointing out, the obvious problem with this interpretation is that Harper “quit” worse jobs for better ones pretty much every time.

    Well, then, maybe he’ll follow Mark Carney, and move from Prime Minister of Canada to Prime Minister of the United Kingdom.

  22. Unrelated to the article: while the Conservatives used the photo of a shrugging Dion with great success and have tried using the photo of a moustachioed JT in an undershirt to brand him, I can’t help but think that the photo of Harper that accompanies this article could be used to great effect. Smug, detached, imperious, even entitled. A picture paints a thousand words, especially with accompanying narration….

    • At this point, people have seen so many photos of Harper I don’t think a Harper photo could make any difference at all.

  23. Harper is the best PM Canada has had in 50 years. He has done nothing radical. He has streamlined Taxes so that a family of four has about 4000 dollars a year to put in their pockets. He has cut corporate taxes to make us more competitive. Justin Trudeau is a flake that has never answered a serious question. Thomas Mulcair has sold his Parties soul to the Quebec Nationalists. Harper will win another majority in two years.

    • Actually. Harper is the worst, most corrupt PM in 80 years. Harper is the only Canadian PM ever held in Contempt of Parliament. Harper is the worst disgrace, that has ever happened to Canada.

      • Are you sure about that? You do realize that Mackenzie King interned citizens of Canadian/Japanese decent in prison camps don’t you? Some of those people, who lost everything owned were interned from just after Pearl Harbor until 1949.

        • I am speaking the damage Harper is doing to this country. How can anyone possibly think? Harper handing this country over to China is just fine? If you read of Harper’s FIPA deal with China. Or, read of Harper’s Omnibus Bill permitting China to sue Canada if, anyone tries to block China’s intrusions into this country. How can anyone think it is just fine to lay Canadians off their resource jobs, being replaced by Harper’s cheap foreign labor. Are people actually that damned blind?

          I signed the petition against, Harper’s FIPA deal with China.

          • Easy there Captain Hyperbole..

          • Check it out for yourself. People are just that stupid.

          • Luckily they’re a shrinking minority… from 37% (39% with voter suppression) down to about 27% at this point. – CPC polling numbers

          • So you are suggesting that 2% of potential voters did not exercise their right to vote because of “voter suppression” efforts? If that is true how is it that law suit brought against the CPC was thrown out of court due to the lack of even a single voter who was in any way dissuaded from voting?

          • The reign of terror that is the Stephen Harper prime ministership from 2006-2015 is by far the most corrupt, criminal, crony administration in this country’s history. The Chuck Cadman Affair, the In and Out Scandal, proroguing to avoid democracy, the casting of a coalition govt as treason (this country was built on a Grand Coalition), “going over the head of the GG”, robocalls, election fraud, voter suppression, Racknine, Karl Rove tactics, negative ads between elections (unheard of), going over campaign limits, accepting corporate donations, Peter Penashue, Dean Del Mastro, Rahim Jaffer, Helena Guergis, Pamela Wallin, Mike Duffy, Patrick Brazeau, Nigel Wright, Tom Flanagan, Afghan Detainee Scandal, F35 boondoggle, billion dollar G20 (usually costs $30M), Muskoka gazebos, anti-science, burning books, and John Baird has to hide in the closet because of his fear for the wrath of homophobic social conservatives. I could go on and on and on. How anyone (outside Alberta) could still support this budget busting, deficit loving criminal government is absolutely beyond the pale. No rational, logical, caring, compassionate, sympathetic, empathetic human being could possibly support these troglodytes.

            And if you want to understand the Conservatives’ rationale for wanting to suppress the votes of Canadians in a 51-60+% liberal country… listen to a leading father of the modern day right wing movement say it himself:

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8GBAsFwPglw

          • Your over the top exaggeration and hyperbole renders your opinions meaningless.

            I also notice that you don’t bother to defend your absurd assertions. Why? See above.

          • lol you’re joking right? Did you not read my entire post? I posted an entire paragraph precisely defending my exact and irrefutable assertions. And instead of challenging any of the facts I presented, you just resorted to childish and petty name calling. In other words, #typicalconservative

          • Seriously, consider that even your chosen moniker is a photo of someone flipping the finger. You are an angry little boy and your hyperbole is consistent with an eighteen year old mentality.

            Grow up and gain some measure of balance.

            Get back to me if that ever happens.

          • I see that once again you’ve chosen to hurl personal attacks rather than try to have a substantive, intelligent discourse. When you call me an angry little boy, it just sounds like projection as you’re the one hurling childish angry insults. I posted an entire paragraph of verifiable facts and legitimate criticisms of Stephen Harper and the Cons. You haven’t even challenged one of my points. Thank you for vindicating my position.

          • OK, let’s start with this:
            “robocalls, election fraud, voter suppression, Racknine, Karl Rove tactics, ”

            Here you have taken a single (unproven) issue and found five ways to describe it as if it were five separate accusations. Clearly you have done this to embellish your list. It is a dishonest and transparent tactic that fools no one.

            Then this “anti-science, burning books, and John Baird has to hide in the closet because of his fear for the wrath of homophobic social conservatives.”

            None of these brainless assertions are verifiable in the least and are over-used hyperbolic accusations that only the dimmest, most dishonest leftists like to throw around with abandon precisely because they are unprovable and incendiary.

            I too could go on and on but you will never acknowledge that your rant is simply a diatribe filled with distortions, half-truths and gross exaggerations.

            Look up “hyperbole” and then try to honestly tell me that your post is not a prime example of it.

        • How many innocent blacks, aboriginals, poor and other minorities has King Harper interred in his gulags for smoking a harmless plant?

          • Actually I am not sure how many people have been incarcerated for possession of cannabis. Why don’t you provide us with some statistics on that. We would really be interested to know.

          • I didn’t realize it was legal in Canada for upper-middle-class white people to smoke pot. Who knew?

      • Well there is Rob Ford.

        • We are comparing PMs but if we were comparing mayors….we would have to go with Rob Ford and Ralph Klein was a mayor before being premier. Ralph, however was much loved by Calgarians.

          • In all fairness to Ralph [ and i did not like him at the time] he was a model of PC sanity compared to Ford.

        • Yes, there is Ford and Calandra. Calandra reminded me of Goebbels, with his ranting and raving. Canada is the butt end of a joke, around the globe.

          • Well Ford supplied much of the butt anyway.

      • To steal a phrase from a previous poster You say you aren’t Über partisan Did Harper fire you or hit on your wife or…. Why can’t these conversations be rational and well thought out instead of a spewing of hate?

    • Let’s make it interesting and see if you actually believe what you say. How much do you want to bet? I say you’re wrong. You name the price. Don’t hide behind your computer. Stand up. Be a man. I’ll bet you whatever you want up to $10,000 that Stephen Harper/CPC does/do not win another majority (170 seats) in the next federal election (2014/2015). I’m not saying I know whose gunna win but I’m willing to bet money that Harper doesn’t win a majority.