Wednesday, June 13, 2007

"The Aggressive Conservatives"

MP Dominic LeBlanc coined the phrase today, and it should become the new opposition buzzword. In the past few weeks, there has been an emerging trend in the rhetoric from pundits and partisans, which is starting to take shape. "Mean-spirited", "iron fisted", "aggressive", "bully", all slip off the tongue with ease, in describing this government, particularly Harper. There is ample evidence available, produced on a daily basis, to support the terminology and that fact represents pure poison for this government.

Everyone understands reputations, you earn them and they are hard to shake. Conservatives are quick to point out the effectiveness of constant references to leadership and strength in framing Dion. Equally relevant, the emerging trend that is starting to gel, that paints Stephen Harper in a decidedly unattractive light. A coherent theme, that draws on a multitude of examples, all of which support the idea that Canada has a government that appears thin skinned, belligerent, aggressive and heavy handed. None of those attributes will prove a ultimate winner with voters, which is why I believe great damage is being done presently. Constant references to mean-spiritedness, fleshed out in the actions, have an accumulative effect that can make it hard for the government to recover.

Harper has always been seen as a sort of enigma. Whenever the discussion turned to the idea of majority, the greatest challenge cited was Harper's need to "connect" with voters, because, despite the relative approval, people still didn't have a firm opinion of the Prime Minister. Who is Stephen Harper? A few months ago that was still largely a open question. However, in the past few weeks, a consistent definition has started to set in the collective psyche. Stephen Harper is a mean-spirited, aggressive partisan, who can't be trusted. A strong argument, show Canadians that the old Progressive Conservatives have been replaced by the "Aggressive Conservatives", supported by fact- simple and devastating.


Karen said...

I heard LeBlanc say it, but he didn't coin matter.

I think it is a good jump off point and a term that is apt. I think the aggression should continue on the "he broke his promise". There are so many, in such a short space of time. It's gold and he gave it to us.

It matters not if you were affected by the specific issue, (though most of us were because his breach of trust was far and wide :).

This is a guy who ran on the dishonesty of the Lib's and in 16 months has broken his word too many times to count.

Shoot there and follow it with the agressive demeanor to cover that up.

Steve V said...


Who said it first, out of curiousity?

Did you happen to read Coyne's column today? He basically tears apart the Atlantic Accords, but that criticism still implicates Harper:

"Indeed, it is only the Harper government's well-earned reputation for deviousness that has allowed the premiers' campaign to get as far as it has. Were the Conservatives less distrusted, Premiers Danny Williams and Rodney MacDonald would be seen for what they are: shakedown artists, in the grand tradition..

It is not true, then, to say that the Accord has been violated. It is true that Mr. Harper played Atlantic Canadians for suckers. At least he is paying the price."

I think that a telling perspective. Harper doesn't have the moral capital to make the point, even when the issue has merit. That is a BAD sign moving forward.

Karen said...

I cannot recall who said it first, but it was yesterday and I think it was a media person...not one I normally hold in high regard incidentally, but I thought the term apt.

Yes, I read Coyne. I reject his "sense" of what has evolved, but agree with the fact that you'll never make everyone happy...premiers, but accept that Harper has "played" them.

My honest take on all of this is this government attempted to equalise, in their terms and definition.

I don't think that is a smart way to go. I do not think every province can be treated the same, no matter how laudable that seems.

That is what this government has tried to do and others.

In my mind, you have to treat every province with the same criteria, while understanding how unique each is.

Flaherty in the end, is a joke. Imagine making fun of the postion you used to hold provincially? Silly little man.

Anonymous said...

Stephen Harper, Ordinarius Maximus

All Hail Ordinarius Maximus

Ordinarius Maximus is Morte

Long Live Stephen Harper, Ordinarius Maximus

burlivespipe said...

Harpor's slimey mis en scene of Dion-as-dweeb may have legs, which is all the more crucial that we continue to point out some fairly obvious conclusions about this de facto smear artist known as Harpor.
And it should be three-pronged, I think, to reach home.
The Agressive Conservative fits to a 'T', then add a spoonful of 'Deceivin' Stephen', and a dash of 'Incompetent Micromanager'...

It appears that the media has found the trail to at least two of these, but the grumblings and whispers from the backrooms of corporate Canada isn't getting covered. It's there, but none are too willing to guild the lilly, especially since Majority Steven has promised the money men so much.

Just as there's a booklet on how to bung up committees, there has to be some written pages on the Harpor manifesto. And his free-spending ways likely is all part and parcel with creating conditions for a 'restraint program' of hacks and whacks should he connive his way to a majority. It'd be similar to what Bill Bennett did in 1983 and Gordon Campbell did in 2001... Begin your fresh term with some painfully fast public slicing. Paint your opponents as whining, ungrateful ne'erdowells, and then gradually dole out a plum or two over the next few years until it's time to 'feed the fever.'

He's neither clever nor original, but he is insipid and conniving. When you've been caught out by the likes of Coyne and Weston, hopefully that signals the end of the game.

Anonymous said...

Right on Burl, and an extra pinch of Ordinarius Maximus to give rise to the mix. :)

Thor said...

How about Regressive Conservatives? That seems more appropriate to me.

Anonymous said...

Regressive Reformaservative Party of Canada lead by Deceivin Stephen and the band of Clueless Cabinet.