Monday, March 26, 2012

Harper Inc. Continues To Deform Our National Ethos

While it is probably impossible to define the soul of a nation, one aspect of the Canadian psyche must surely be a generosity of spirit and a concern for the collective that is absent in many other nations.

It is the relentless attack upon this very spirit, with the intention of minimizing its influence in policy formulation, that I find the most reprehensible aspect of the Harper regime. While I have written before about these efforts, I was reminded of them in reading Tim Harper's column this morning in The Star. A few excerpts follow:

Mulcair had barely made his way to the stage late Saturday when the Conservative party fired off a release, branding him “an opportunist,’’ a man with blind ambition and a divisive personality.

There was Maxime Bernier, a minister of state from Stephen Harper’s tiny Quebec team, branding Mulcair a socialist, a man who will raise your taxes, take away your freedom and intervene daily in your life.

Then Heritage Minister James Moore entered the fray, bringing the attack up yet another notch, referring to Mulcair’s “vicious streak,” then repeating that he was “vicious and personal’’ in his approach to politics.

While these attempts at character assassination can be dismissed as simply reflections of the gutter politics with which Harper and his acolytes are intimately familiar, their costs can be high indeed, as pointed out by a Star reader this morning:

Re: PM disgusts voters with attack ads, Column, March 22

I am really concerned for the Canadian psyche. Here we go again with negative ads even though we are not in an election. What a message for every child in the schoolyard — name-calling, half-truths and demeaning another person's character are okay. Politics is destroying our civil society instead of providing much-needed leadership. The Conservatives should be inspiring us to work together for a better country. They should be talking about policies that will lead to a better, more cohesive society rather than attempting to humiliate the opposition.

They need to stop the negative ads and start focusing on their own party platform. Continuing that negativity will serve as a wedge in our country that can only get bigger and bigger.

Bonnie Bacvar, North York

It is a point well-taken, but one which this Harper Conservative government, I suspect, doesn't give a damn about.


  1. The quickness and the tone of the Conservative response to Mulcair's ascension only underscores what Frank McKenna said about them years ago. They are "a bunch of thugs."

  2. Histrionics, bullying, interruptions and a complete disregard for human grace and gentlemanly behaviour . . . ah yes, our government.