The Globe then goes on to advise Mr. Harper on how he needs to "grow" and change and govern once/if re-elected:
... On balance, Mr. Harper remains the best man for the job in the tough times now upon us. He deserves if not four more years, at least two more years. By all logic, he should be cruising to an easy majority.
... If you want to meet the most inflexible head of a major political party, Mr. Dion takes it in a cakewalk....He's had a relatively strong week to be sure, but has never been much inclined to make the kind of mid-course corrections required in uncharted waters. He is a priest not a proselytizer, better at righteousness than salesmanship.
... Meanwhile, the supposedly obstinate Mr. Harper has been nothing if not open to adjusting as circumstances change. He was masterful in building a "big tent" centre-right alternative to the "natural governing" Liberals. His vision, determination and adroitness restored political competition to Canada, not an insignificant accomplishment.
... Indeed, the most important characteristic Mr. Harper has shown over 33 months in office is a capacity to grow.
Some of that is OK and some is typical Liberal hooey. I like the last one best - "as small a role as possible" for the state. If taken seriously that would require Harper to dump large chunks of his own "modest" platform. Of course what is actually possible depends on the size of his minority/majority.
... Instead of carping about a dysfunctional Parliament, for which he holds much responsibility, Mr. Harper should throw out his previous playbook and try making the institution work.
... use his political skills to wring real meaning out of last spring's apology to aboriginals.
... revisit his wholly inadequate climate-change plan.
... His attitude toward China, which thankfully looks to be in transition, has been rooted in old-fashioned, missionary-driven zeal.
... His instincts to play as small a role as possible, other than for electoral gain, are perhaps not as wrong-headed as those who would have the state play too big a role, given the excesses of past interventions.
Overall, at this point in the election, I’ll take the Globe’s position as more a blessing than a curse.