Saturday, August 17, 2013

UPDATED: The Dishonourable Minister of Duplicity

Yesterday I write a brief post expressing my disdain for the fact that Peter MacKay and his family are on the cover of the 'celebrity' magazine Hello! Canada. That disdain springs not only from his incompetent and dishonest performance on more than one occasion as a long-standing cabinet minister in the Harper government, but also from the fact that were it not for MacKays patent lack of integrity, the Conservative Party of Canada would not exist today.

Serendipitously, I came upon a podcast hosted by Global Research marking the ten years that have elapsed since Peter MacKay's betrayal led to end of the Progressive Conservative Party and the birth of the Harper mutation known as the Conservative Party of Canada. The rest, as they say, is history, albeit a sad one for many of us who care about this country.

An introduction to the podcast, written by Marjaleena Repo and Michael Welch, reminds us of some of the sordid history behind the incarnation of today's party:

David Orchard contested the leadership of the Progressive Conservative Party back in 2003. Orchard relied on the support of grass-roots people, myself among them, who were opposed to government policies on free trade, environmental neglect, and Canadian support for imperial wars abroad. [7]

It was through Orchard’s support that Peter Mackay became leader of the party. Mackay then betrayed the condition of Orchard’s support by orchestrating a merger with the right-wing US-Republican style Canadian Alliance Party, which was then led by Stephen Harper. [8]

This betrayal, in addition to some of the other shenanigans which played out in the months during the leadership campaign and leading up to the vote to merge the parties in December provides a critical context for assessing this party’s commitment to ethics, responsible conduct and fair play.

An example of the shenanigans?

“They would do all kinds of things…Organizing meetings that didn’t happen or people would go to a delegate selection meeting and the address was a pawn shop in Regina so people stood at the street corner waiting for something and nobody came…There was a kind of planned confusion…by people who really wanted us to stay out, and I think these people were people who wanted the party to be taken over.” Orchard campaign manager and political advisor Marjaleena Repo

While dirty politics is hardly something MacKay invented, I feel a special animus toward him due to the long-term effects of his dishonourable behaviour.

You can listen to or download the podcast here.

UPDATE: I see that MacKay, the new Minister of Justice, is continuing his duplicity. In reference to American justice trends during an interview, he insists that Canada is moving in a very progressive way, despite the evidence that proves otherwise, evidence that MacKay dismisses as “partisan rhetoric”:

“They’re [the U.S.]talking about moving away from very harsh sentences that were handed down for, in some cases, simple possession. That we’ve already done, [This bold lie ignores the fact that growing six pot plants now requires a minimum six month sentence under Harper reforms] but there will remain very severe penalties in the U.S., in fact more severe than in Canada, for trafficking in narcotics and that is an area in which our government feels very strongly.”

Despite cuts to prisoner work programs and new rules that make it harder for ex-convicts to obtain pardons, MacKay maintains Canada’s approach is “balanced” and “doesn’t lose sight of the need to rehabilitate.”

To read the full extent of Peter's prevarications, click here.


  1. Thanks, Lorne. When you consider his father, Elmer partner of KarlHeinz Schreiber, it's plain that the apple never falls far from the tree.

    1. I had forgotten that, Mound. Thanks!

  2. Lorne, Mackay joined military exercise, when he was Defence Minister, to get an idea how it feels to be a soldier and what it takes to be a soldier.

    Maybe he should spent sometime in jail to get some idea how life is there. Then he may behave differently.

    The words I entered for posting this comment included word 'boo'. Maybe it was for Mackay.

    1. Your suggestion is most apt, LeDaro. In fact, such a stint might be advisable for the entire Harper caucus, in the event that future legal problems impede their movement - just sayin' ;)