Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Harper’s stupid blunder? I don’t think so.

There seems to be near universal acceptance by media pundits that the Harper/Flaherty economic update was pure blundering folly. The inclusion of cuts to party financing was, supposedly, a stupid error, a "toxic gambit" that precipitated the present crisis. This view has been repeated endlessly in MSM commentary and news and is taken pretty much as incontrovertible truth by nearly everyone including many loyal Tories who are supposedly angry with Harper. But is it true?

Stephen Harper has been called a master political strategist and tactician. He doesn’t do anything without thinking it through. Would he make such an apparently careless blunder? I don’t think so.

Consider the possibility, if not strong likelihood, that the opposition had planned to make their takeover bid no matter what was in the economic update. Based on what we heard in Layton’s conference call this hardly seems unlikely. Consider further that the Conservatives, professionals that they are, had their ears to the ground and knew or strongly suspected what was coming. This is not unlikely either.

So, assuming this scenario, what could the Conservatives have done to protect themselves? They could have sought consensus with the opposition before tabling their update. The Tories claim to have done so. But with a takeover plot in the works, the opposition would certainly not co-operate in helping the Tories create their economic plan. They’d do the opposite, if anything. So, given the Tory expectation of an opposition bid to defeat them following their economic update, no matter what, would it not make sense for them to try to poison the opposition’s apparent motives? One way to do that would be to make them appear to be the lazy, grasping incompetents that they are - that they are motivated by their addiction to the public trough for party financing.

I don’t find this scenario at all far fetched. Is it provable? Not directly. Would the Tories admit to it sans proof. Not likely.

I rest my case, your honour.


Anonymous said...

i agree with you fully on the ideas you brought out
i think this will bring the people who were sitting on the fence out to vote for the tories with alot of libs and some dippers too
all we can do is hope

Anonymous said...

It's funny.. I kinda hold Harper at this level that he doesn't make any mistakes. Kinda like those pool players you watch on television who are making pool shots for the like the next five moves.

Anyways, I TOTALLY think this was premeditated. I hope he drops a TON of SCHOOLAGE on the opposition. They are such idiots.


Alberta Girl said...

I truly believe you are correct. Remember when Iggy blustered that there was no way in Hell that they were going to give Harper any ideas as to what he should do.

This has been in the works for a very long time.

The latest is the talking points from the "coalition" that it is the Tory machine that is doing all the calling and writing because the "same phrases are being used".

What a bunch of crap. I fear for my country.

Albertan said...

Day lied about his attempt at an accord with BQ.

Harper lied about Canadian flags not being present at Coalition signing ceremony.

Harper lied about his attempt at a coalition with the BQ.

Harper recorded an opposition caucus meeting.

Harper uses major economic crisis as a chance to crush opposition.

The question isn't why does any one support the coalition. The question is why doesn't everyone?

sor said...

You are exactly right. This gambit was in the works even before the last election. Why else did Dion refuse to step down.

By forcing their hand he has exposed them for the power hungry self centered group that they are.

Remember that 2 of the 5 Liberals elected in BC won by less that 50 votes. That must be making them very nrevous right now.

Prorogue government and let them hang in the wind for 6 weeks. Cheers.

Anonymous said...

Albertan( yeah, right!) If we took the time to explain it to you, you still would not be able to grasp the concepts as they include decency, honour, ethics and patriotism.

Scary said...

Albertan: (I kinda doubt you're an Albertan, but I digress..)

Harper proved a point - that Dion cares nothing about Canada when he makes a deal with someone who wants to break up Canada.

Harper did not lie about his coalition attempt with the BQ - it was political posturing to put pressure on the Liberals, nothing more. He has never denied this.

A Conservative staffer (not Harper, idiot) was INVITED to an NDP meeting and recorded it.

Harper is certainly using the myth that Canada is in an economic crisis to crush his opposition who would certainly use the same tactics against him. Good on him.

Canadians have differences in opinion. Some are lefties and will support the coalition b/c the country will move to the left. That's their right. For anyone who can see past his own "kitchen table", the coalition is a bad idea for the economy. (TSX is tanking on the current political instability) To say that "everyone should support the coalition" denies that there is a plurality of opinion in the country and betrays your desire for thought control.

Anonymous said...

Again, because of ungrateful Quebec, we resulted in a minority after Harper bent over backwards and pissed off a lot of his voter base in doing so. This is why we are going through this crisis.

The real problem again here and now is QUEBEC!

Quebec does not and will not separate anytime soon. Charest's Liberals will win a majority. It is all blackmail.

Now is the time to start a national petition to have a referendum on keeping Quebec within Confederation.

I am convinced they would raise a white flag of cooperation. The problem seems to be a vile hand full of Political whores (Duceppe, Parizeau, Marois and others) who exploit a very gullible and emotional people. Ill informed to the hilt.

Quebecers are spoiled children. We have helped them become like this.

Now is the time for a backlash.

I do not have the experience to start a petition of this magnitude which would also need to be picked up by the MSM so that Quebecers would be aware. We need to send a clear message to Quebec: You are in or we remove you.

Can anyone start that petition and send it through the blogosphere?

Richard said...

"Harper lied about Canadian flags not being present at Coalition signing ceremony."

Albertan, you're misquoting what he said:

He said the flags were off to the side -- you are making stuff up hoping it will become a truth.

langmann said...

I agree with you. Actually I'm not entirely convinced the Conservatives bear any blame here for this problem. This deal has been in the making for a long time, and I am suprised it took so long to come about.

We're looking at a long series of potential minority governments should the Liberals actually get a leader, unlike Dion who causes most people to cringe.

The Left needed to merge in order to remove some of the vote splitting. If it wasn't this issue it would have been something else.

Lets examine this particular issue: it involves the transfer of public money to corporations and unions as well as to political parties. This is a transfer that as a libertarian I am strongly against. Hence I applaid Harper for holding off so long with the inevitable ransom payment to the American automobile industry. Should we be blaming the Conservatives for being conservative and trying to be intelligent with out money? Or did we just vote for Liberal Blue?

Honestly I would rather go to the polls over that issue than the issue Joe Clark went to the polls with: an 18% gas tax increase. Think about it. Which resonates more with voters?

The last issue here is the potential death of either the Liberals or the NDP. Should this merger occur, many more intelligent fiscally and economically intelligent Liberals will be wondering why they are surrounded by socialists of meagre intelligence and shortly want out of there.

I think Canada is about to enter the realm of two party politics.

johndoe124 said...

I'm not so sure. If Harper knew that he would be defeated then why would he need to include the party funding idea?

Personally, I think the political funding is consistent with the whole package: essentially austerity measures for the government. It's also consistent with Conservative ideology and Harper's self-stated goal of doing what's right for Canadians. The measure valued the taxpayer over the political party. For partisan Conservatives the measure had the added bonus of leaving Liberals in dire financial straits, however, after years of the current financing laws the Liberals have only themselves to blame. Furthermore, their solvency is not the taxpayers' responsibility nor should their solvency take precedence over doing right by the taxpayer. Again, I think this is all consistent with Conservative ideals and consistent with the theme of the package.

So, I think, knowing that he would likely be defeated anyway the CPC simply tabled the update as planned.

JR said...

Clearly there are lots of people who aren't buying into the media's interpretation of events. I thought so but it's good to see some confirmation. Thanks.

"Albertan", whether or not you are one, you are entitled to your delusions.

Johndoe124. If Harper were planning to resist his defeat, which he doing, it would merely have been a tactic to, as I said, try to poison his opponents' motivation in the minds of the public. Did it work? Given the media's interpretation you could argue it didn't work very well. On the other hand the opposition sure backpeddled away from its initial outrage over the cuts and on to the economy as the reason for wanting to defeat the government - ie back to its original plot. As for the party financing issue itself, I have no doubt the Tories want to cut direct taxpayer per vote funding. Me too. But if they hadn't expected to be defeated and instead expected to get some cooperation out of at least some of their opponents I kind of doubt they'd have poked that stick in their eye this early in the game.