Come on, get angry - Macleans.ca
 

Come on, get angry

Paul Wells on how, despite being chippy and accusational at times, Tuesday’s debate was nevertheless revealing


 
Come on, get angry

Fred Greenslade/Reuters

It was selfless of Canada’s broadcasters to showcase the political party leaders with an English-language debate that couldn’t possibly be mistaken as a showcase of the broadcasters’ own abilities. The show could not have been less impressively produced if the leaders had skyped their jabs and parries in from an Internet café. I spent the first three minutes of the debate frantically switching channels because I couldn’t believe the cavernous echo-chamber sound was the official audio feed from the floor.

As for the set: corrugated metal, beige ’70s colours—at last I realized why it all looked so familiar. The broadcasters had stationed the leaders of Canada’s political parties in front of the tour bus from The Partridge Family. A subliminal message, perhaps. The old TV comedy’s theme song—Come On Get Happy—was an extended warning against fratricidal bickering. “We have a dream, we’ll go travelling together / We’ll spread a little loving and we’ll keep moving on / Something always happens whenever we’re together / We get a happy feeling when we’re singing a song.”

Yeah, not so much. These four couldn’t bear the thought of travelling together much further than they’ve come so far. The tone was set in the first exchange by Bloc Québécois Leader Gilles Duceppe, in the pesky teenager role originally played by Danny Bonaduce. Stephen Harper answered one of the pre-recorded questions from an ordinary voter that have come to characterize these debates. “I would like to congratulate Mr. Harper for answering a question from a citizen,” Duceppe said, “for the first time in this campaign.”

That pretty much set the tone for the night: chippy and accusational. Later, Jack Layton, the New Democrat, asked Michael Ignatieff, the Liberal, why Ignatieff missed 70 per cent of the votes in the last session of Parliament. Layton mocked Harper’s tough-on-crime policies: “I don’t see why we need so many more prisons when the crooks seem happy in the Senate.”

Ignatieff asked Harper why ordinary Canadians have found themselves getting booted from Conservative rallies during this campaign. “What are you afraid of? Why are you afraid of the Canadian people?”

So the first serious news out of this debate is that the other leaders were so eager to tear a strip off one another, and so desperate to goad Harper into displaying his legendary temper, that the Prime Minister (for Harper is still that, and it will soon become an important detail indeed) was able to rise above the fray by refusing to take part in it.

Harper acted a little less like a talk-show host on Xanax than he did in the sit-down, everyone-at-the-same-table debates of 2008, at which he kept calling his opponents by their first names and fixed the Green party Leader Elizabeth May with the pleasantly dazed expression his advisers later called the “icy blue eyes of love.” That time he went so far overboard with his pacifist shtick that he seemed to have mentally checked out, and his polling lead in that election briefly suffered. This time he permitted himself to show a little flint now and again. But this was his fourth English-language leaders’ debate since he became leader of the united Conservatives in 2004. He has long since learned that he cannot win by shutting the others down, so he used this debate to explain how, at least in his view, he has run a moderate, collaborative government.

“Canada’s got the strongest economy on Earth and suddenly it’s plunged into the fourth election in seven years and nobody can say why,” he said at one point.

To say the least, that’s not how Harper’s opponents see it. Ignatieff accused him of abandoning Canadian families to spend billions on “jets, jails and tax cuts.” Layton wondered whether his wife Olivia Chow’s family could have immigrated to Canada if Harper had been prime minister then. The Conservative leader had to spend a large part of the night denying the premises of their attacks. “This is simply not true,” he said, and, “The contrary is the fact,” and, “I simply don’t accept the truth of those attacks,” and more of the same besides.

The danger facing Harper is precisely that he is in this election because his version of the truth is often at variance with his opponents’, and with the record. The most spectacular instance came during a hectic Monday when two different preliminary drafts of Auditor General Sheila Fraser’s investigation into funding of last summer’s G8 and G20 summits suggested the government mis­informed Parliament about funding for fancy infrastructure far from the summit site.

John Baird, a favourite Harper stand-in, told reporters that Fraser’s final report was much more lenient than the first draft. Out came a new revelation: Fraser has written to a parliamentary committee saying the Conservatives misquoted her on another file to make it seem she’d lauded the government’s performance, when in fact she’d done nothing of the sort.

The details of that little nested set of apparent scandals had no chance of being aired properly inside the echo chamber of the Ottawa Conference Centre on debate night. The best the leaders could do was to hurl fragments of accusations and offer bits of defences.

It was a challenging night for Ignatieff, who has impressed observers with his performance on the road. Here he had more competition for the spotlight. Sometimes he had to get chippy to get a word in, and when challenged, especially by Layton, he was briefly at a loss for a rebuttal. What he did manage to do was to get a word in for some of his platform’s signature programs—modest aid packages for students heading to university and families caring for elderly relatives. His success will depend on whether viewers remember the Ignatieff who has a program out of the many Ignatieffs who were on offer.

Perhaps the most agile combatant onstage was Layton. The polls so far suggest he’s in some danger of losing seats and declining in his share of the popular vote, for the first time since he became NDP leader in 2003. Here he was able to act out the role he claims is his: more principled than Ignatieff in his opposition to Harper, yet somehow better able to work with any party that wants to play. “Mr. Harper thinks the idea of people working together is somehow a bad idea,” he said. “He calls it names.”

The name Layton referred to was “coalition,” the spectre Harper has preferred to brandish at every stop. Oddly, Harper didn’t talk about a coalition here until an hour into the debate, and only then in response to accusations from Duceppe and Layton, who said Harper was perfectly happy to scheme with them in 2004 against Paul Martin.

Harper has lately talked a little less about a formal, contract-on-paper “coalition” to usurp the power he feels is his, and a little more about some looser arrangement of opposition parties against him. That saps his argument’s ability to scare but increases its plausibility. Duceppe turns out to be a keen student of parliamentary democracy: “When you say that the party with the most seats forms the government,” the Bloc leader reminded Harper, “you forgot something: that party has to have the confidence of the House, with the Speech from the Throne. Otherwise, there is no democracy at all.”

Ignatieff made a similar argument. “If you get more seats than any other party you get to try and meet the House of Commons,” he said. And indeed it’s so. In a news release right after the debate, the Conservatives hammered the point: “Opposing Stephen Harper’s reintroduced budget, which Michael Ignatieff, Jack Layton and Gilles Duceppe have all vowed to do, will be a confidence vote,” the Conservative release said. “Rejecting it would clear the way for Michael Ignatieff to become prime minister with the support of the Bloc Québécois and the NDP.”

That’s actually true. It’s not how things are guaranteed to turn out, but how they may well. It’s why Harper decided two years ago his only guarantee of keeping power would be to win a majority government. Short of that, the game-theory possibilities are endless. You’ll note that this article makes no attempt to name a winner from Tuesday’s debate. What’s more intriguing is that even after the votes are counted on May 2, it may not yet be clear who’s really won.


 

Come on, get angry

  1. We need regional debates and lots of them!

  2. We need regional debates and lots of them!

  3. Every day Harper sinks lower and lower, another day another scandal hits the headlines. Now i hear he's attempted/attempting to defraud (AGAIN – sponsorship scandal) the electoral system by flooding temporary foreign workers into Canada, which he planned to capitalize on by changing rules to let non-citizens in the country vote. Of course he wasn't allowed to do this because he's not trusted to be truly in charge of anything (the only good thing going for canada and canadians under his oppression), BUT you can be sure this is part of his long term plan for reinventing Canada into the dictatorship state he has wet dreams about every night.

    Bush tampered with voting machines, paid off a family member in the state of florida to look the other way, and stole a country out from under the people he was supposed to honestly and ethically serve. Harper is doing the same thing, need to win an election?…. buy it… can't buy it?… corrupt it with coercion of people, human beings…. and distortion of social structures which disgust him as much as he now disgusts all Canadians.

    This thing has to be divested of his power and any future potential for gaining it. Thanks to harper being a beacon of darkness, corruption, evil, moral ineptitude and everything that WILL NEVER BE PART OF A FUTURE WORTH GIVING TO YOUR CHILDREN.

    Harper. You're finished. Buster.

  4. Every day Harper sinks lower and lower, another day another scandal hits the headlines. Now i hear he's attempted/attempting to defraud (AGAIN – sponsorship scandal) the electoral system by flooding temporary foreign workers into Canada, which he planned to capitalize on by changing rules to let non-citizens in the country vote. Of course he wasn't allowed to do this because he's not trusted to be truly in charge of anything (the only good thing going for canada and canadians under his oppression), BUT you can be sure this is part of his long term plan for reinventing Canada into the dictatorship state he has wet dreams about every night.

    Bush tampered with voting machines, paid off a family member in the state of florida to look the other way, and stole a country out from under the people he was supposed to honestly and ethically serve. Harper is doing the same thing, need to win an election?…. buy it… can't buy it?… corrupt it with coercion of people, human beings…. and distortion of social structures which disgust him as much as he now disgusts all Canadians.

    This thing has to be divested of his power and any future potential for gaining it. Thanks to harper being a beacon of darkness, corruption, evil, moral ineptitude and everything that WILL NEVER BE PART OF A FUTURE WORTH GIVING TO YOUR CHILDREN.

    Harper. You're finished. Buster.

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      • Harper may be "bad", but Liberals have a well deserved reputation for their culture of corruption and misleading / revolked campaign promises–at all levels (lest we forget the Federal sponsorship scandal, or the Ontario Liberal string of broken promises).So if Harper is "bad", I'd hate to think what that makes the long history of liberal leadership.
        Harper has his annoying side for sure, an arrogance and a strong political drive that puts his agenda first at times. But his "sins" pale in comparison to any Liberal leader we have yet to have lead us. They certainly have cost us less.

        • NO

        • How many jobs permanently lost in BC because Harper refused to let the NAFTA tribunals complete their work and gave a billion dollars to their competition in the US?

          Cost us less?

          You don't have a clue.

    • It's as if nothing sticks to Harper. Every day another scandal, and still his numbers remain high. Either the people who trust him are too stupid to be allowed to vote, or Harper has the devil on his side. I will never understand how his lemmings can sell their souls in order to touch his hem. I can understand a few loyal, stupid ministers and underlings awed by his presence, but not a whole party. My God, what's going on? He is out to destroy this country, and if allowed, will cut out funding for the other parties, which means they will vanish from the horizon, and yet I hear not a word about this. Save Our Souls!

      • Devil's in the details, so you were correct at your first assumption…. nothing sticks in an empty head, just echoes and bounces around… Harper's followers are probably the answer to the great question of the missing link in human evolution, that would explain their decreased intelligence, inability to evolve a cohesive social structure amongst their peers, and thus constant anti-social and sometimes violent subjugation of other living beings.

        In short, nothing sticks cause there is nothing 'to stick it to' this group of people never evolved the capacity to develop functional social hierarchy and thus they died out like evolution will do to all unsuccessful species….

        ….so don't worry, what goes around comes around, and if Harper followers don't kill themselves off, and we can't stop them, evolution will stop them dead in their tracks, writing is on the wall!

    • I was not aware that George actually had to pay Jeb to steal the election. I always thought being bros would have been enough. Thank you for this fascinating and informative post.

  5. Wow, someone took the title seriously!… guess they didn't read the article, it's about the debate. That being said, if all Canadians got as angry as this guy we might end up with a better government than we have now…

    And, Yes, Harper is bad, and needs to be stopped. Now back to the 'debate'…

  6. But Paul, it's not called "bickering" and "hurling fragments of accusations at each other," it's called democracy! :)

    I think Ignatieff scored a few points with that one, but ultimately it felt like he was campaigning for leader of the opposition, rather than Prime Minister.

    I was hoping you'd comment on that, since I believe this is Wells' #1 rule (or #2 rule?): The guy who campaigns for opposition usually gets the job.

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    • This comment was deleted.

      • I love the rules. One question, though: Aren't #3 and #4 basically the same rule? Opposition leaders, but their very nature, are going to seem more cranky than leaders.

      • 1: For any given situation, Canadian politics will tend toward the least exciting possible outcome.

        For this election that might mean things will stay relatively unchanged.

        Maybe the LIberals will pick up seats but not enough to vault into first place and not enough for a majority with an accord (or whatever) with one of the smaller parties. So we would end up at status quo ante.

        2: If everyone in Ottawa knows something, it's not true.

        I have no clue what people in Ottawa are saying right now … so I'm glad everybody is out on the road.

        3. The candidate in the best mood wins.

        Harper was angry the first week and a half but seems pretty chipper now. Michael Ignatieff still seems quite happy and Jack wouldn't on how to be down even if he were at the bottom of a well.

        The only one who seems fairly glum and low key is Duceppe.

        4. The guy who auditions for the role of opposition leader will get the job.

        Harper still is Prime Minister. Jack says he's running to be Prime Minister and Michael Ignatieff hopes to be Prime Minister. I guess Gilles Duceppe will be Leader of the Opposition then …

    • I think Iggy scored points with people who take seriously the notion that this election is about democracy. I doubt many Canadians are convinced.

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    • .
      The only move that really got my attention was Harper's eye-contact. He'd stare down the guy who was talking to him, but couldn't look people in the eye and answer them at the same time. Just talked to his hypnotized base on the tube. The others were talking to each other, to Harper, to the moderators. They were talking like human beings. As little as I like Ignatieff, sheesh, after that I'd even almost vote for Duceppe.

      A vote for Dear Leader is a vote for a jellyfish.
      .

      • A vote for Dear Leader is a vote for a THUG.

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          • Sorry but EC has confirmed that votes are valid. To bad for Steve and his party of thugs.

      • facts…eh, you should send that note to harper, he twists facts to his benefit constantly, perhaps this person is just taking notes from the master; how could you expect someone wouldnt pick up this type of offensive ideology, when that's what harper's swimming in up to his ears, always.

    • There is, of course, the inconvenient fact that Elections Canada has determined that the way this "poll" was set up wasn't necessarily kosher, and that they won't do it in the future (while allowing the votes to count, as they should, since it wasn't the voters' fault — it was Elections Canada's fault). And even the news report from Guelph said nobody laid a hand on the ballot box.

    • This comment was deleted.

      • Nonsense! Please explain the Nanos poll today showing Harper markedly out distancing all others in "leadership" and the CPC leading the nearest contender by about 10%. All this BS propagated over minor issues by all and sundry is obviously having no effect on the general population.
        http://www.nanosresearch.com/main.asp

        • I was polled today, happening to be home, being an old guy with a landline, and was asked that question. I couldn't disagree that Harper is the best leader, but there is no space on the 'form' for the qualifications I made clear to the pollster calling. Most skilled, most manipulative, most devious, most distrustful, and most certainly not the person I wanted leading the country.

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        • This comment was deleted.

    • If this polling station is perfectly legal, why did Elections Canada state it will not be allowed in any other places.
      And show me where PM Harper told anyone to confiscate anything?

  9. May have to change the headline on this thing.

  10. This comment was deleted.

    • For the youngin's there's a shot of the bus in this.

      [youtube bIuKtp3yCTw http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bIuKtp3yCTw youtube]

      Harper may want to switch to covering Cassidy rather than the Beatles, seems to work magic on angry people.

      • Thanks for the link! Now I DO feel happy, seeing young David Cassidy, and remembering how in 1971, huge posters of him looked down on me as I danced in my room. And he made me feel all warm and queasy inside.

        • "…warm and queasy inside." Do you mean fuzzy or were you really sick to your stomach?

    • Regardless what you call it, some of these folks will go off on tangents.

      It was good read, BTW.

  11. I think Iggy scored points with people who take seriously the notion that this election is about democracy. I doubt many Canadians are convinced.

  12. Interesting that Wells didn't lash out at Ignatieff as the big loser in the debate, but seemed to take a more even handed no big winner approach. This opinion delivered, as he says, immediately after the event and before the party spin and herd mentality of the national media got rolling, contrasts totally with what the TV hosts, pundits, and panels have been trying to sell us in the last two days.
    They've settled in on an easy narrative based on very little evidence, that Layton is soaring, Ignatieff plunging, and Harper cruising to an easy majority.
    Well done Wells. Too bad all the pundits didn't have to write from a self imposed lock up.

  13. Interesting that Wells didn't lash out at Ignatieff as the big loser in the debate, but seemed to take a more even handed no big winner approach. This opinion delivered, as he says, immediately after the event and before the party spin and herd mentality of the national media got rolling, contrasts totally with what the TV hosts, pundits, and panels have been trying to sell us in the last two days.
    They've settled in on an easy narrative based on very little evidence, that Layton is soaring, Ignatieff plunging, and Harper cruising to an easy majority.
    Well done Wells. Too bad all the pundits didn't have to write from a self imposed lock up.

  14. .
    The spineless 'debater' wouldn't look his opponents in the eye when he answered them. I loved it when the camera director cut to a side-shot, leaving Dear Leader addressing a dead tube. I almost could swear he did it on purpose. Hopefully the guy won't lose his job. Seems, as with Guergis, that's something very easy for Dear Leader to arrange.
    .

  15. .
    The spineless 'debater' wouldn't look his opponents in the eye when he answered them. I loved it when the camera director cut to a side-shot, leaving Dear Leader addressing a dead tube. I almost could swear he did it on purpose. Hopefully the guy won't lose his job. Seems, as with Guergis, that's something very easy for Dear Leader to arrange.
    .

    • You mean the producer might have been a leftist agitator bent on embarrassing Harper? Interesting. Too bad it didn't work.

    • And Guergis should still be in Cabinet?

      • Certainly not the Cabinet. But back in the party? Maybe, given all the charges against her seem to have been groundless. After all, there's a criminal with mutiple convictions in the PMO, and four party members on elections charges, so by comparison she's squeaky clean.

        • I still contend that the reason that she isn't there is that she and Jaffir would have caused a scandal in the future. Harper probably saved them.

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          • good logic. We slam him on any perceived thing, but if he tries to stop something from happening, we slam him and say 'would we even notice'.

            Sad.

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          • Fair enough

            humor and sarcasm are hard to put into the written word. :)

    • If he did it on purpose, he should be fired.

  16. Lol! Thanks for the reply, and the link.

  17. .
    The only move that really got my attention was Harper's eye-contact. He'd stare down the guy who was talking to him, but couldn't look people in the eye and answer them at the same time. Just talked to his hypnotized base on the tube. The others were talking to each other, to Harper, to the moderators. They were talking like human beings. As little as I like Ignatieff, sheesh, after that I'd even almost vote for Duceppe.

    A vote for Dear Leader is a vote for a jellyfish.
    .

  18. I love the rules. One question, though: Aren't #3 and #4 basically the same rule? Opposition leaders, but their very nature, are going to seem more cranky than leaders.

  19. You mean the producer might have been a leftist agitator bent on embarrassing Harper? Interesting. Too bad it didn't work.

  20. For the youngin's there's a shot of the bus in this.

    [youtube bIuKtp3yCTw http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bIuKtp3yCTw youtube]

    Harper may want to switch to covering Cassidy rather than the Beatles, seems to work magic on angry people.

  21. Embedded in this phoned-in-fluff-piece is one little gem about Harper that should be the deciding factor in this poll-driven gov't-tax-dollar supported election-sham:
    "his version of the truth is often at variance with <snip> the record."

  22. Yep, the level of conversation sure is high today. Think I'll go read some Guy Gavriel Kay. Have a nice weekend!

  23. This comment was deleted.

    • yup – lots of 'tards today.

      You can read Stewart, though. Don't agree, but at least he has thoughts.

    • Tigana (My favourite Kay novel)
      The theme of taking away names and thus identity….. a good metaphor as we change the name of Canada to Harperstan.

  24. I quite liked the debate format and think all the leaders did well. Shapshots of most of the issues came out well enough.

    My one disappointment in Ignatieff was when Harper actually went public with the myth that "him with the most seats gets to be PM, period". Although both Duceppe & Ignatieff gave the technically correct answer, neither finished the line of thought to my satisfaction.

    They should have pointed out the confidence of the House is the supreme determinant in who becomes PM simply because having the confidence of the House means that the representatives of a majority of Canadians support that choice.

    In the same vein, if Harper does get his majority I would say the fault lies collectively with Canadians rather than the other parties.

  25. This comment was deleted.

    • I liked the French language debate format even more. The journalist moderators tried to keep the debaterss focussed on the question that was asked, and posed some suplementary questions to bring out more detail. They actively prevented the debaters from talking over each other or avoiding the real intent of the questions.

      In addition I got the feeling that every time Harper made the statement "let me be perfectly clear" it was immediately followed by a statement that was fast and loose with the facts. Some journalist needs to line these statement up against a review of the facts. I think that would be enlightening.

  26. 1: For any given situation, Canadian politics will tend toward the least exciting possible outcome.

    For this election that might mean things will stay relatively unchanged.

    Maybe the LIberals will pick up seats but not enough to vault into first place and not enough for a majority with an accord (or whatever) with one of the smaller parties. So we would end up at status quo ante.

    2: If everyone in Ottawa knows something, it's not true.

    I have no clue what people in Ottawa are saying right now … so I'm glad everybody is out on the road.

    3. The candidate in the best mood wins.

    Harper was angry the first week and a half but seems pretty chipper now. Michael Ignatieff still seems quite happy and Jack wouldn't on how to be down even if he were at the bottom of a well.

    The only one who seems fairly glum and low key is Duceppe.

    4. The guy who auditions for the role of opposition leader will get the job.

    Harper still is Prime Minister. Jack says he's running to be Prime Minister and Michael Ignatieff hopes to be Prime Minister. I guess Gilles Duceppe will be Leader of the Opposition then …

  27. 1: For any given situation, Canadian politics will tend toward the least exciting possible outcome.

    For this election that might mean things will stay relatively unchanged.

    Maybe the LIberals will pick up seats but not enough to vault into first place and not enough for a majority with an accord (or whatever) with one of the smaller parties. So we would end up at status quo ante.

    2: If everyone in Ottawa knows something, it%E2%80%99s not true.

    I have no clue what people in Ottawa are saying right now … so I'm glad everybody is out on the road.

    3. The candidate in the best mood wins.

    Harper was angry the first week and a half but seems pretty chipper now. Michael Ignatieff still seems quite happy and Jack wouldn't on how to be down even if he were at the bottom of a well.

    The only one who seems fairly glum and low key is Duceppe.

    4. The guy who auditions for the role of opposition leader will get the job.

    Harper still is Prime Minister. Jack says he's running to be Prime Minister and Michael Ignatieff hopes to be Prime Minister. I guess Gilles Duceppe will be Leader of the Opposition then …

  28. Harper reminds me so much of my ex-wife, who was an alcohol and other substance abuser and, although smart, also had certain blindspots of rationality. She was able to tell barefaced lies (or maybe I should say untruths, because she often seemed to believe them herself) and when confronted with counterevidence or a contradiction on her part, she would just repeat the untruth, not as an acknowledgement of being wrong, but as though the repetition somehow explained away the counterevidence or contradiction. The difference with Harper is that he repeats the "Big Lies" over and over as a Machiavellian strategy.

  29. Harper reminds me so much of my ex-wife, who was an alcohol and other substance abuser and, although smart, also had certain blindspots of rationality. She was able to tell barefaced lies (or maybe I should say untruths, because she often seemed to believe them herself) and when confronted with counterevidence or a contradiction on her part, she would just repeat the untruth, not as an acknowledgement of being wrong, but as though the repetition somehow explained away the counterevidence or contradiction. The difference with Harper is that he repeats the "Big Lies" over and over as a Machiavellian strategy.

    • Your prime minister is not supposed to be the one who cuddles with you in bed at night. You have an unhealthy attitude towards politics. You also seem to have the attitude of a typical know-it-all. You should try seeing things from others' perspectives sometime. But that might be very difficult for someone like you.

    • And you actually beleive the 3 Amigos are telling the truth?
      if you feel this way, tell us why the boys wont come clean on the Coalition? Why dont they tell Canadians the true story?
      Are they afraid to reveal the Truth?

      • Have you ever thought that they are and the truth is, you're just a paranoid hopped up on scare tales put out by the Chicken Party of Canada?

  30. Wow – are you wrong. First of all, I am wondering if what you say could be construed as slander. "Harper actually told the guy to confiscate the damn box. . ." Can you prove that? In front of a judge? Or did you read it on a blog, and not check the facts.
    Did he try to steal it?
    "The students say Sona approached the Elections Canada balloting site claiming that the process unfolding at the location was illegal and at one point reached for but never took possession of a container with ballots."

    After reading this the second time, I would say that Sona stopped himself. It doesn't say that someone stopped him. As a matter of fact, the CPC has the number of the box, as well as the number of the seals on the top and bottom of the box. Could he have reached for it, thought bad idea, and asked someone to turn it over for him? How else did the CPC get those numbers?

    Please use facts, if you want to be taken seriously.

  31. Harper may be "bad", but Liberals have a well deserved reputation for their culture of corruption and misleading / revolked campaign promises–at all levels (lest we forget the Federal sponsorship scandal, or the Ontario Liberal string of broken promises).So if Harper is "bad", I'd hate to think what that makes the long history of liberal leadership.
    Harper has his annoying side for sure, an arrogance and a strong political drive that puts his agenda first at times. But his "sins" pale in comparison to any Liberal leader we have yet to have lead us. They certainly have cost us less.

  32. Regardless what you call it, some of these folks will go off on tangents.

    It was good read, BTW.

  33. And Guergis should still be in Cabinet?

  34. yup – lots of 'tards today.

    You can read Stewart, though. Don't agree, but at least he has thoughts.

  35. what about Canadian's not liking the other options. Who it to 'blame' for that.

  36. Have to wonder wonder how the public is going to react if Ignatieff loses but becomes PM by gaining the confidence of the house. I don't think he has been specific enough that this is his intention. Traditionally Liberal leaders have resigned on election night. If Iggy offers no resignation election night, the wheels will be spinning immediately. Wonder why Liberals moved convention. Related?

  37. This comment was deleted.

    • The Liberals intentions are to win. Ignatieff wont resign on election night because he is not a sitting PM nor at the end of his political career. If parliament doesn't have confidence in an elected Harper minority, I am sure that the party with the next most seats will try to govern by consensus.

      • You are sure, but no Liberals are saying that is the future they see. . .

        If their intentions are to win, they have horrible intentions. Poorly thought out, and never going to happen. Just stating fact – they know that they won't win, they just don't want to see a majority CPC. Fact is, they might find they like the alternative even less. Layton is picking at Ignatieff in the polls, and doing well in Quebec. Be interesting if the two parties come out with a small difference in seat count.

  38. "It was a challenging night for Ignatieff, who has impressed observers with his performance on the road."

    Impressing no one, than, in other words. I read article other day about how unimpressive Iggy was at the debates and a quote about how it was out of character, didn't know what happened, because Iggy is so impressive 'on the road'.

    Libs have a leader that Canadians are not responding to, only time Iggy is praised is when no one can see him, when he's 'one the road'.
    ——
    "The polls so far suggest he's in some danger of losing seats and declining in his share of the popular vote, for the first time since he became NDP leader in 2003."

    What's going on with NDP? Some polls have NDP declining, but I am also reading C Hebert columns that claim NDP eating Libs lunch in Quebec. How can both be true?
    —–
    “icy blue eyes of love.”

    I read this other day and laughed pretty hard. Told my missus about Harper's blue eyes of love and we laughed together imagining Harper flirting with Laureen and those blue eyes of love.

  39. "It was a challenging night for Ignatieff, who has impressed observers with his performance on the road."

    Impressing no one, than, in other words. I read article other day about how unimpressive Iggy was at the debates and a quote about how it was out of character, didn't know what happened, because Iggy is so impressive 'on the road'.

    Libs have a leader that Canadians are not responding to, only time Iggy is praised is when no one can see him, when he's 'one the road'.
    ——
    "The polls so far suggest he%E2%80%99s in some danger of losing seats and declining in his share of the popular vote, for the first time since he became NDP leader in 2003."

    What's going on with NDP? Some polls have NDP declining, but I am also reading C Hebert columns that claim NDP eating Libs lunch in Quebec. How can both be true?
    —–
    “icy blue eyes of love.”

    I read this other day and laughed pretty hard. Told my missus about Harper's blue eyes of love and we laughed together imagining Harper flirting with Laureen and those blue eyes of love.

  40. "It was a challenging night for Ignatieff, who has impressed observers with his performance on the road."

    Impressing no one, than, in other words. I read article other day about how unimpressive Iggy was at the debates and a quote about how it was out of character, didn't know what happened, because Iggy is so impressive 'on the road'.

    Libs have a leader that Canadians are not responding to, only time Iggy is praised is when no one can see him, when he's 'one the road'.
    ——
    "The polls so far suggest he's in some danger of losing seats and declining in his share of the popular vote, for the first time since he became NDP leader in 2003."

    What's going on with NDP? Some polls have NDP declining, but I am also reading C Hebert columns that claim NDP eating Libs lunch in Quebec. How can both be true?
    —–
    “icy blue eyes of love.”

    I read this other day and laughed pretty hard. Told my missus about Harper's blue eyes of love and we laughed together imagining Harper flirting with Laureen and those blue eyes of love.

  41. Stewart SMith wrote:
    "In the same vein, if Harper does get his majority I would say the fault lies collectively with Canadians rather than the other parties. "

    Yes stewie….the same thought process worked for a previous Liberal PM who lost an election, and stated the Canadian people let him down. Very Liberal indeed.

  42. It would seem your choice in women mirrors your choice in political parties.

    Liberal right?

  43. No, they shouldn't have pointed that out because it would be political suicide. Whether it conforms to Westminster tradition or not, it would clearly be unpopular with the Canadian electorate to have a 2nd place Lib gov't supported by NDP and the Bloc. If the opposition leaders made it clear that they see this as acceptable, then much of the centre goes to the Cons. But, if they can obfuscate this for another few weeks, then the Libs still have a shot to hold the Cons to a minority and the opposition can remove the Cons from power.

  44. There is, of course, the inconvenient fact that Elections Canada has determined that the way this "poll" was set up wasn't necessarily kosher, and that they won't do it in the future (while allowing the votes to count, as they should, since it wasn't the voters' fault — it was Elections Canada's fault). And even the news report from Guelph said nobody laid a hand on the ballot box.

  45. NO

  46. Thanks for the link! Now I DO feel happy, seeing young David Cassidy, and remembering how in 1971, huge posters of him looked down on me as I danced in my room. And he made me feel all warm and queasy inside.

  47. Paul, I don't see why some journalist doesn't challenge Harper's continued claims that reducing corporate income taxes will somehow result in huge investments in Canada and corresponding numbers of jobs. There is little to support this idea. Something similar was tried by Reagan decades ago. This "trickle down' theory was thoroughly debunked and ended up being called "voodoo eoncomics". Over the past decade or so, Canada's corporate tax rates have been consistently and dramatically reduced, but the most obvious result has been an increase of $80 billion in cash reserves held by large corporation. That $80 billion fundamentally came from ordinary Canadian taxpayers. The way these tax reduction are structured, there is no incentive for corporations to invest these funds with any benefit for Canadians whatever. They can easily use these cash reserves to buy up competitors or invest outside Canada. Let's hear something on this.

  48. Paul, I don't see why some journalist doesn't challenge Harper's continued claims that reducing corporate income taxes will somehow result in huge investments in Canada and corresponding numbers of jobs. There is little to support this idea. Something similar was tried by Reagan decades ago. This "trickle down' theory was thoroughly debunked and ended up being called "voodoo eoncomics". Over the past decade or so, Canada's corporate tax rates have been consistently and dramatically reduced, but the most obvious result has been an increase of $80 billion in cash reserves held by large corporation. That $80 billion fundamentally came from ordinary Canadian taxpayers. The way these tax reduction are structured, there is no incentive for corporations to invest these funds with any benefit for Canadians whatever. They can easily use these cash reserves to buy up competitors or invest outside Canada. Let's hear something on this.

    • It was never debunked. Lower corporate taxes got Ireland from the poorhouse to the first world. Not to mention the fact that Reagan reversed a decade of economic malaise into three decades of prosperity.

      Cash reserves held by corporations are not a bad thing. That's what they will use to hire new people and make new investments. It also insulates them default on their debts, which is of great concern in the recession. Having no cash on hand ensures there will be no job growth.

      • Reality check: Ireland is now one of the biggest debtor nations in Europe, and being watched as another Greece or Portugal, with potential defaults on the horizon.

        And yes, "trickle-down" economics has largely been debunked. The US debt tripled during Reagan's reign, leading to the recession of the early 90s as Bush Sr tried to get it back under control.

        • This comment was deleted.

      • " Lower corporate taxes got Ireland from the poorhouse to the first world.”

        Yes, multi-billion dollar equalization payments from the EU had nothing to do with the ‘Celtic Tigers' short-lived success story, right?

    • Reducing corporate income tax might not create jobs, but increasing them, as the NDP is proposing, would probably result in job losses.

      • Depends how far they're increased. Remember, we currently have one of the lowest corporate tax rates in the world. We have an exceedingly well-education population, are seen as extremely stable (even with the Bloc) and cover health care publically so corporations don't have to.

        Put all those things together and modest raises in the corporate tax rate are unlikely to cause any significant movement at all.

    • Have you ever seen a poor guy offering someone a job.

      • Have you ever seen a rich guy offering someone a job when there's no customers?

        Jobs are created when there's new demand.
        Giving money to those who have it doesn't create new demand.
        Giving money to those who don't does.

  49. I liked the French language debate format even more. The journalist moderators tried to keep the debaterss focussed on the question that was asked, and posed some suplementary questions to bring out more detail. They actively prevented the debaters from talking over each other or avoiding the real intent of the questions.

    In addition I got the feeling that every time Harper made the statement "let me be perfectly clear" it was immediately followed by a statement that was fast and loose with the facts. Some journalist needs to line these statement up against a review of the facts. I think that would be enlightening.

  50. Fresh of off of the failure to capture Candians' support by by viciously attacking Conservatives over meaningless process issues — the Liberals (and their supporters on this) have responded by…even more vicious attacks on Conservatives over meaningless process issues — this time in Guelph.

    "when a political party offers the voters ham and eggs and the voters say, 'No, thanks,' its first instinct is to say, 'OK then. How about double ham and double eggs"
    — David Frum, writing about conservatives, but applicable to all political parties.

  51. Fresh of off of the failure to capture Candians' support by by viciously attacking Conservatives over meaningless process issues — the Liberals (and their supporters on this) have responded by…even more vicious attacks on Conservatives over meaningless process issues — this time in Guelph.

    "when a political party offers the voters ham and eggs and the voters say, 'No, thanks,' its first instinct is to say, 'OK then. How about double ham and double eggs"
    — David Frum, writing about conservatives, but applicable to all political parties.

    • This comment was deleted.

      • This comment was deleted.

  52. Mr Harper's statments during the debates would suggest that he believes neither Canadians, nor the government can walk and chew gum at the same time. He claims that we must focus on the economy and any talk about democratic activity is completely distracting. I've got news for Harper; Canadians can nicely manage a health economy and a healthy democracy at the same time, but not while he is in office. Since he professes to BE an economist, he should know that an economy is nothing more than a word to describe real people working, buying and selling in their own interest, but the focus is PEOPLE.

  53. Mr Harper's statments during the debates would suggest that he believes neither Canadians, nor the government can walk and chew gum at the same time. He claims that we must focus on the economy and any talk about democratic activity is completely distracting. I've got news for Harper; Canadians can nicely manage a health economy and a healthy democracy at the same time, but not while he is in office. Since he professes to BE an economist, he should know that an economy is nothing more than a word to describe real people working, buying and selling in their own interest, but the focus is PEOPLE.

    • This comment was deleted.

      • True, it's always best to learn from the master.

  54. It was never debunked. Lower corporate taxes got Ireland from the poorhouse to the first world. Not to mention the fact that Reagan reversed a decade of economic malaise into three decades of prosperity.

    Cash reserves held by corporations are not a bad thing. That's what they will use to hire new people and make new investments. It also insulates them default on their debts, which is of great concern in the recession. Having no cash on hand ensures there will be no job growth.

  55. Your prime minister is not supposed to be the one who cuddles with you in bed at night. You have an unhealthy attitude towards politics. You also seem to have the attitude of a typical know-it-all. You should try seeing things from others' perspectives sometime. But that might be very difficult for someone like you.

  56. The Liberals intentions are to win. Ignatieff wont resign on election night because he is not a sitting PM nor at the end of his political career. If parliament doesn't have confidence in an elected Harper minority, I am sure that the party with the next most seats will try to govern by consensus.

  57. Please substitute "meaningless process issues" for the way more correct "bypassing democracy".

  58. Since you're on here I'll take the oportunity to congratulate you directly on a great article.

    But couldn't you have chosen a different title? That song will be stuck in my head all day now, thanks to you!

  59. Let's hope Elections Canada takes positive action to contact directly all those who thought they had voted, to advise them their ballots are null and void, and then ensure that they are allowed to vote again at a properly constituted voting station.

    If this is not done, the election in that riding should be declared null and void, with a by-election to be held at a time to be named post-election.

  60. This comment was deleted.

    • can't wash out scum with scum -irrelevant

  61. Certainly not the Cabinet. But back in the party? Maybe, given all the charges against her seem to have been groundless. After all, there's a criminal with mutiple convictions in the PMO, and four party members on elections charges, so by comparison she's squeaky clean.

  62. can't wash out scum with scum -irrelevant

  63. When I read the headline, I immediately anticipated the article was about Harper getting angry because of previous journalistic articles which paint that picture.
    To proclaimed Duceppe as a parliamentary expert based on his quip, well of course he should be, what else has this man got to do in the HOC? he clearly is not working for "ALL" canadians? May the best man win a majority…or a coalition?

  64. No; Liberal – center, CPC – right, and NDP – left. (Or so they claim)

    No wonder your posts are so confused!

  65. Funny that — I thought we were in the middle of a free election to choose our next government! Sounds pretty democratic to me!

    The fact that most voters do not obsess about the nuances of parliamentary politics does represent a failure of their judgement. Instead it represents a failure of the Liberal party's judgement when they based their ballot question on the assumption that most voters did, in fact, share their obsession.

  66. No; Liberal – center, CPC – right, and NDP – left. (Or so they claim)

    No wonder your posts are so confused!

  67. What – unhealhy because he sees Harper as a lying schemer? Or because he doesn't see that as a virtue?

  68. A vote for Dear Leader is a vote for a THUG.

  69. Sorry but EC has confirmed that votes are valid. To bad for Steve and his party of thugs.

  70. Reality check: Ireland is now one of the biggest debtor nations in Europe, and being watched as another Greece or Portugal, with potential defaults on the horizon.

    And yes, "trickle-down" economics has largely been debunked. The US debt tripled during Reagan's reign, leading to the recession of the early 90s as Bush Sr tried to get it back under control.

  71. "…warm and queasy inside." Do you mean fuzzy or were you really sick to your stomach?

  72. I read afterward that they had agreed to count the votes; I was concerned that, with the irregularities, they might toss them and then those who voted would lose their franchise. It doesn't matter who they were voting for; it would be wrong for people to have their votes invalidated because of a systemic screw-up.

  73. It's as if nothing sticks to Harper. Every day another scandal, and still his numbers remain high. Either the people who trust him are too stupid to be allowed to vote, or Harper has the devil on his side. I will never understand how his lemmings can sell their souls in order to touch his hem. I can understand a few loyal, stupid ministers and underlings awed by his presence, but not a whole party. My God, what's going on? He is out to destroy this country, and if allowed, will cut out funding for the other parties, which means they will vanish from the horizon, and yet I hear not a word about this. Save Our Souls!

  74. From your computer to God's ears! I will never understand how he continually gets away with his actions. He is a very dangerous man, who if given the chance, will eliminate the other parties running against him.

  75. Reducing corporate income tax might not create jobs, but increasing them, as the NDP is proposing, would probably result in job losses.

  76. vote NDP or Green…im metis and none of the parties are in my vote so might as well vote for health care…at least NDP is a change.

  77. Nonsense! Please explain the Nanos poll today showing Harper markedly out distancing all others in "leadership" and the CPC leading the nearest contender by about 10%. All this BS propagated over minor issues by all and sundry is obviously having no effect on the general population.
    http://www.nanosresearch.com/main.asp

  78. Even bought-and-paid-for Liberal shill Rick Mercer noted how calm and cool Harper was. You noted he was borderline on Xanax in the 2008 debate, which leads one to ask: what is the factual basis for your claim in a recent post that Stephen Harper's instinct is to, and I quote, "snarl" and "bite"? There is no factual basis, you shameless Liberal hack, you're just providing "hate fodder" for your ultra-Liberal readership and commentariat.

    We've got millions of Canadians brainwashed by jacktards like you into believing that Harper is evil incarnate AND THERE IS ZERO FACTUAL BASIS FOR IT. Thanks, pal. Harper is actually a pretty cool guy, calm under pressure, likes to rock out to AC/DC, he jams, his policy wonk credentials are flawless, likes to chill with his kids…not at all the snarling, biting monster your narrative portrays him as.

    Here's an idea: be cool for a change and report accurately: harper's not the monster you make him out to be and he is running the cleanest government in at least a generation – you do not do your country any service by weaving such a polarizing false narrative.

  79. Even bought-and-paid-for Liberal shill Rick Mercer noted how calm and cool Harper was. You noted he was borderline on Xanax in the 2008 debate, which leads one to ask: what is the factual basis for your claim in a recent post that Stephen Harper's instinct is to, and I quote, "snarl" and "bite"? There is no factual basis, you shameless Liberal hack, you're just providing "hate fodder" for your ultra-Liberal readership and commentariat.

    We've got millions of Canadians brainwashed by jacktards like you into believing that Harper is evil incarnate AND THERE IS ZERO FACTUAL BASIS FOR IT. Thanks, pal. Harper is actually a pretty cool guy, calm under pressure, likes to rock out to AC/DC, he jams, his policy wonk credentials are flawless, likes to chill with his kids…not at all the snarling, biting monster your narrative portrays him as.

    Here's an idea: be cool for a change and report accurately: harper's not the monster you make him out to be and he is running the cleanest government in at least a generation – you do not do your country any service by weaving such a polarizing false narrative.

    • This comment was deleted.

    • flawless policy wonk credentials – say what?

      Harper is not a monster, nor is he the person who should be Prime Minister. AND he may not be the person who should lead his party. Watch the results on election night.

  80. Reality check: Ireland used low corporate tax rates to raise their standard of living LONG BEFORE the current debt crisis, and they will remain a first world nation long after the crisis has subsided.

    Reality check #2: the debt crisis in Ireland is a result of bank failures, it has nothing to do with corporate taxes. You might have noticed a similar banking crisis in the USA which has the highest corporate taxes in the world.

    And no, you can whine all you like, but it's common knowledge amongst economists that low corporate taxes are a boon to economic output and jobs.

  81. Check with Helena.

  82. I still contend that the reason that she isn't there is that she and Jaffir would have caused a scandal in the future. Harper probably saved them.

  83. That really doesn't rebut any of his comments, it just states your opinion.

  84. I was surprised nobody called Harper out for his numerous untruths. I was really expecting Ignatieff or Layton to say: “the ease with which the Prime Minister lies is truly remarkable”

    The french debates were much better. I like Duceppe's response to Layton saying the NPD “peux scorer des buts”; Duceppe retorted “when has the NPD ever scored a goal?” Zing!

  85. I was surprised nobody called Harper out for his numerous untruths. I was really expecting Ignatieff or Layton to say: “the ease with which the Prime Minister lies is truly remarkable”

    The french debates were much better. I like Duceppe%E2%80%99s response to Layton saying the NPD “peux scorer des buts”; Duceppe retorted “when has the NPD ever scored a goal?” Zing!

  86. " Lower corporate taxes got Ireland from the poorhouse to the first world.”

    Yes, multi-billion dollar equalization payments from the EU had nothing to do with the ‘Celtic Tigers' short-lived success story, right?

  87. " Lower corporate taxes got Ireland from the poorhouse to the first world.”

    Yes, multi-billion dollar equalization payments from the EU had nothing to do with the ‘Celtic Tigers%E2%80%99 short-lived success story, right?

  88. I was lovesick.

  89. what insight could she provide? If it was truthful, it would have to include her best guess as to why she is where she is – I doubt that she would ever do that.

  90. You are sure, but no Liberals are saying that is the future they see. . .

    If their intentions are to win, they have horrible intentions. Poorly thought out, and never going to happen. Just stating fact – they know that they won't win, they just don't want to see a majority CPC. Fact is, they might find they like the alternative even less. Layton is picking at Ignatieff in the polls, and doing well in Quebec. Be interesting if the two parties come out with a small difference in seat count.

  91. " she and Jaffir would have caused a scandal"

    With all the other ones, would we even notice? He's kept far worse…

  92. You must be talking about Sona, as I am sure that SH knew nothing about this. How is Sona planning to eliminate all the other parties? If he really a dangerous man?

    BTW, Maclean's just posted this:

    "Several students claim Michael Sona, the communications director for Guelph Conservative candidate Marty Burke, approached the polling station claiming the process was illegal, and at one point may have tried to remove the ballot box, although his presence at the station has not yet been confirmed."

    Interesting, huh?

  93. He was there. I was there. I know him well. It was him. Case closed.

  94. good logic. We slam him on any perceived thing, but if he tries to stop something from happening, we slam him and say 'would we even notice'.

    Sad.

  95. I was not aware that George actually had to pay Jeb to steal the election. I always thought being bros would have been enough. Thank you for this fascinating and informative post.

  96. flawless policy wonk credentials – say what?

    Harper is not a monster, nor is he the person who should be Prime Minister. AND he may not be the person who should lead his party. Watch the results on election night.

  97. I was polled today, happening to be home, being an old guy with a landline, and was asked that question. I couldn't disagree that Harper is the best leader, but there is no space on the 'form' for the qualifications I made clear to the pollster calling. Most skilled, most manipulative, most devious, most distrustful, and most certainly not the person I wanted leading the country.

  98. but you are a ghost, so no one saw you there, so it cannot be proved. . .

  99. Meant it as humour; guess I should have left a happy face –

    :-)

  100. That's a little harsh, don't you think? I'm surprised your cryptic comment garnered so many votes.

  101. This comment was deleted.

  102. "I couldn't believe the cavernous echo-chamber sound was the official audio feed from the floor."

    Somebody forgot to install the shag rug to deaden the echoes. They should have hired the folks who built Tony Clements $100,000 gazebo. ;-)

  103. "I couldn%E2%80%99t believe the cavernous echo-chamber sound was the official audio feed from the floor."

    Somebody forgot to install the shag rug to deaden the echoes. They should have hired the folks who built Tony Clements $100,000 gazebo. ;-)

  104. "I couldn't believe the cavernous echo-chamber sound was the official audio feed from the floor."

    Somebody forgot to install the shag rug to deaden the echoes. They should have hired the folks who built Tony Clements $100,000 gazebo. ;-)

  105. This comment was deleted.

  106. Fair enough

    humor and sarcasm are hard to put into the written word. :)

  107. Tigana (My favourite Kay novel)
    The theme of taking away names and thus identity….. a good metaphor as we change the name of Canada to Harperstan.

  108. Ya know what a "tell" is in poker, eh?
    …. How do ya know when Harper is about to tell an untruth/partial truth/misrepresentation/blatant lie?
    "let me be perfectly clear"

    (recycled Dick Nixon)

  109. The set design seems to be a running theme with the Liberals and the media… a back to the 1970's theme. Maybe that was why Iggo was quoting Pierre Trudeaus favorite mass murderer, Chairman Mao… "Let a thousand flowers bloom" or some such commie tripe.

  110. I can't make up my mind – yet – Is Paul Wells trying to pull our collective legs – or is the headline writer at Macleans that came up with the heading to his story ? In any case . IF PM Stephen Harper was to lose his cool on the TV DEBATE – who would be the first national critic that would say " now , now ( Mr ) Harper , you have to sit still and take all that ridiculous guff from the ( Honourable Opposition ) other guys and like it '!

    After all – is TV a COOL Medium – or NOT ? You guys must be short on real stories in this national election to publish this this drivel ! Or are you just doing your best to make the Debate(s) look like they are important – which they are NOT !

  111. I can't make up my mind – yet – Is Paul Wells trying to pull our collective legs – or is the headline writer at Macleans that came up with the heading to his story ? In any case . IF PM Stephen Harper was to lose his cool on the TV DEBATE – who would be the first national critic that would say " now , now ( Mr ) Harper , you have to sit still and take all that ridiculous guff from the ( Honourable Opposition ) other guys and like it '!

    After all – is TV a COOL Medium – or NOT ? You guys must be short on real stories in this national election to publish this this drivel ! Or are you just doing your best to make the Debate(s) look like they are important – which they are NOT !

    • Exactly, I can only guess that this kind of specific characterization appeals to those who read the Hollywood drivel – at the checkout counter – and also vote based on some superfical characteristic/ behaviour. Chretien grabbed a protester by the face…he served 3 terms as PM? Important to get elected – its NOT.

  112. Devil's in the details, so you were correct at your first assumption…. nothing sticks in an empty head, just echoes and bounces around… Harper's followers are probably the answer to the great question of the missing link in human evolution, that would explain their decreased intelligence, inability to evolve a cohesive social structure amongst their peers, and thus constant anti-social and sometimes violent subjugation of other living beings.

    In short, nothing sticks cause there is nothing 'to stick it to' this group of people never evolved the capacity to develop functional social hierarchy and thus they died out like evolution will do to all unsuccessful species….

    ….so don't worry, what goes around comes around, and if Harper followers don't kill themselves off, and we can't stop them, evolution will stop them dead in their tracks, writing is on the wall!

  113. facts…eh, you should send that note to harper, he twists facts to his benefit constantly, perhaps this person is just taking notes from the master; how could you expect someone wouldnt pick up this type of offensive ideology, when that's what harper's swimming in up to his ears, always.

  114. Exactly, I can only guess that this kind of specific characterization appeals to those who read the Hollywood drivel – at the checkout counter – and also vote based on some superfical characteristic/ behaviour. Chretien grabbed a protester by the face…he served 3 terms as PM? Important to get elected – its NOT.

  115. If this polling station is perfectly legal, why did Elections Canada state it will not be allowed in any other places.
    And show me where PM Harper told anyone to confiscate anything?

  116. If he did it on purpose, he should be fired.

  117. You would do the same if you thought PM Harper was going to put your party (Grits) out of business

  118. "It's not bickering. It's democracy!"

    Best argument against democracy yet!

  119. And you actually beleive the 3 Amigos are telling the truth?
    if you feel this way, tell us why the boys wont come clean on the Coalition? Why dont they tell Canadians the true story?
    Are they afraid to reveal the Truth?

  120. Have you ever seen a poor guy offering someone a job.

  121. You must learn to listen to what the PM says before you post misleading statements.

  122. How many jobs permanently lost in BC because Harper refused to let the NAFTA tribunals complete their work and gave a billion dollars to their competition in the US?

    Cost us less?

    You don't have a clue.

  123. Have you ever thought that they are and the truth is, you're just a paranoid hopped up on scare tales put out by the Chicken Party of Canada?

  124. You need to learn what on the road means.

  125. Depends how far they're increased. Remember, we currently have one of the lowest corporate tax rates in the world. We have an exceedingly well-education population, are seen as extremely stable (even with the Bloc) and cover health care publically so corporations don't have to.

    Put all those things together and modest raises in the corporate tax rate are unlikely to cause any significant movement at all.

  126. Have you ever seen a rich guy offering someone a job when there's no customers?

    Jobs are created when there's new demand.
    Giving money to those who have it doesn't create new demand.
    Giving money to those who don't does.

  127. Tampering with a ballot box is anything but a "meaningless process issue"

  128. True, it's always best to learn from the master.

  129. Good point, and we turfed them following that, so I assume you're arguing we should be doing the same thing for the CPC, yes?

    Or are you just a hypocrite?

  130. C'mon, we had one the very day after the English debate!

  131. Phoned-in, eh? You mean he still uses dial-up?

    Cripes sake, Paul, you work for Rogers!

  132. Phoned-in, eh? You mean he still uses dial-up?

    Cripes sake, Paul, you work for Rogers!

  133. Canada's broadcasters can't put together a halfway decent audiofeed, eh? Well, that's nothing a couple more hundred million in cultural subsidies couldn't fix, eh?

  134. No it isn't.

    "…The Canadian economy as a whole has increased the number of jobs by 6% since 2005. However, the 200 companies that are receiving the $12 billion a year tax break have only increased their job numbers by 5%, in effect they are pulling down the average.

    Instead of creating jobs with those billions, they have merely increased their profits or are sitting on the cash. Canadians should expect vastly more for $12 billion a year."
    http://www.progressive-economics.ca/2011/04/06/co

  135. I just niticed that this so called non-partisan web site has three ads for the Liberal party on one page but none for any of the other party's.
    When will the media give a truly level playing field to all the different views instead of proping up the left while trying to drag down the right?

  136. I just niticed that this so called non-partisan web site has three ads for the Liberal party on one page but none for any of the other party's.
    When will the media give a truly level playing field to all the different views instead of proping up the left while trying to drag down the right?