I am beginning to think we have done Stephen Harper a disservice. No, I’m sure we have. In fact, I think we — and by we I mean the media, me included — have been grossly unfair to him, and never more so than in the matter of Mike Duffy’s expenses.And that's just for openers! What follows is quite, let's say, uncharitable.
You will be familiar with the picture we have created of him: suspicious, paranoid, controlling, a leader who trusts no one, leaves nothing to others, insists on taking a hand in even the smallest matter. Well, you’d be suspicious, paranoid and controlling, too, if everyone around you was lying to you all the time.
Coyne's opening sarcasm is actually a fairly accurate statement of the Media Party's characterization of Stephen Harper throughout his entire time in office.
Of course, he is suggesting, sarcastically, that the media (him included) have not created such a picture - that those who think so are just being "paranoid". But that "picture" is a meme the media started and has continuously reinforced from square one. And it is one that Harper's other opponents have adopted as routine talking points.
Coyne's entire column is just one more reinforcement of that smear. "Harper, the paranoid micromanager not only knew every detail of his chief of staff's handling of the Duffy affair but was directing the whole thing." That's what beggars belief!
The simplest and most believable scenario is that Stephen Harper the CEO of the Government of Canada, like any other successful CEO of a large enterprise, would have entrusted a relatively minor internal problem, like the handling of the Duffy affair, to his chief of staff - just like he said he did. Furthermore, any other CEO, not being subject to a partisan, hostile media would not have fired his COS but instead given him a raise along with a commendation.
Coyne needs to stop being so naively, blindly and nastily partisan and start paying attention to Christie Blatchford. Better yet, the Post should give him back to the CBC, full time.