FOR FAR LONGER than it was defensible to do so, the rabble and occupy elements of the opposition to Prime Minister Stephen Harper maintained the paranoid trope of an extreme and hidden agenda, whose Reform agents awaited the propitious moment to conquer the duped public by stealth. Eight years into the Harper Conservative era, it arrives as a historical irony – as well as a rebuke to an over laboured conspiracy – that the foremost reason to oppose Stephen Harper was also the reason many Canadians had tired of the Liberal Party of Canada. And that reason was the open contempt of the public shown by its government, a contempt whose exercise and underlying agenda was anything but hidden.
ROUGHLY THREE YEARS ago, on a visit to the office of then Senator Consiglio Di Nino, I was shown a voting card signed by the Progressive Conservative and Canadian Reform Conservative Alliance members who on Wednesday, October 15, 2003 created the Conservative Party of Canada. Acknowledgement of this anniversary — ten years ago, exactly — was understandably absent from a voluminous Throne Speech which noted the approach of several other anniversaries, including Confederation and both World Wars.
• Week of 13.10.2013 | “SEND IN THE CLOWNS”
Christian delusions are driving the GOP insane | Quebec physicians ordered to stop performing virginity tests | Vatican withdraws Pope Francis medals after spelling Jesus’ name wrong | Mike Duffy billed Senate $65,000 to pay friend for ‘no tangible work,’ RCMP alleges | Recommended Article: I got hired at a Bangladesh sweatshop. Meet my 9-year-old boss | This Comedian Hijacks a TED Talk And Basically Makes A Fool Out of Every “Thought Leader” Ever | Daniel Noehl Calls Police After Being Stiffed In Drug Deal | Music: Paul McCartney “New” | Charges that Canada spied on Brazil unveil CSEC’s inner workings | Scarborough residents report receiving robocalls after Toronto municipal Councillor Ainslie steps down | Giorgio Mammoliti is Back on the Toronto Executive Committee
• Week of 01.06.2013
How to Get Rob Ford to Call You a Racist | Henry Morgentaler | Town in Northern Ireland Turns into Virtual Potemkin Village Ahead of G8 | The Zombie Plan for Middle East Peace | Recommended Article: How the Rob Ford Crack Scandal Could Save Toronto | Game: “The Puffster” | The 2013 Scripps National Spelling Bee | Nigeria Lawmakers Pass Bill Banning Gay Marriage | 32 Killed in Iraq Attacks as May Toll Crosses 600
Mike Duffy proved himself to be effective on the after-dinner speech-and-shakedown circuit, and in exchange for this service the Conservative Party of Canada was willing to turn its gaze from the very things which are now threatening to bring the party down.
I WAS NEVER an enthusiast of Frank magazine, but no one living in Ottawa at the height of its notoriety — from the mid 1990s to the early 2000s — could entirely ignore it. By the time of its demise it had sunk, in my view, to the mental and moral level of a frothy mob. Good satire is a matter of discernment, knowing just who to attack and on what foundation. An example is condensed in the brilliant coinage The Puffster, Geoff Heinricks’ name for the journalist-turned-trough-feeder Mike Duffy. In the ’90s, he was the subject of an ongoing satirical campaign which culminated in a defamation lawsuit (a common occurrence at Frank) later settled out of court. “Puffster” economically and comprehensively summed up the self-regarding Duffy, capturing in one word his swollen ego together with his lack of moral and intellectual gravity.
• Week of 19.05.2013 — Is Rob Ford’s New Low His New High? | A Lashing For Mahmoud Ahmadinejad | Retired NFL Players Endure A Lifetime Of Hurt | Kim Jong Un Knows Turf | Drunk Man Cuts Off His Penis, Flushes It Down The Toilet | Hot In Japan: Human Doll Cloning | The Canadian Senate’s Growing Independent Party | Building the Starship Enterprise