Monday, September 08, 2008


Stephen Harper alluded to a "nasty" election campaign, because he knew that his party planned to run a "nasty" election campaign. The opening salvos in the campaign demonstrate that Harper was merely PROJECTING, the gutter is home.

First, contrast the two parties election websites, one offers vision, the other offers vitrol. Then, look at the initial ads for the respective parties. The Liberals release a positive ad, outlining their Green Shift idea, their vision. What do the Conservatives do? They attack, with the release of three negative ads, all aimed at Dion and the Liberals. All is fair game in politics, so the parties are free to do what they wish. However, the contrast is striking and it speaks to a theme we can capitalize on.

The Globe and Mail had a piece on the "pre dawn attack" on the Liberals, and I found the last line telling:
However the party did not announce any plans of its own during the press conference.

Yesterday, during an interview on CTV, Harper said that, given the present circumstance, now is not the time for big ideas. In other words, don't expect much from the Conservatives, the ship has sailed, it's all about choosing the captain. What we have here, and the last line of the Globe piece highlight this fact, the Conservatives have no ideas, so they will spend their time attacking others. A bankrupt party, who's main goal is to put the spotlight on others, while simultaneously absent on their own vision.

The Conservatives can attack the Green Shift, but at some point, and I suspect it will come, media and voters will ask the question- what about your plan? It is pretty brazen to unleash all this invective towards another party's plan, when you own plan scores an F, nobody supports it, nobody thinks it credible, even if you allow that it is, it does the exact same thing you attack others for. The colossal hypocrisy, the off the charts goofy logic, the sheer gall, deserves to be exposed.

One party offers a path for the future, the other simply tears down ideas, but does little to fill the void. The campaign will be "nasty" because father of the year Harper is a NASTY piece of work, employing Rovian tactics to distract from his thin agenda. It's a classic contrast, negativism vs a positive vision.

Do Canadians want ideas, or do Canadians want vitrol? I have a sneaking suspicion that the Conservatives may see a blowback, when people wonder why it is, that they continually take the low road, why they seem entirely at ease in the muck? This election is more and more a referendum on whether or not Canadians lack the sophistication to see beyond gutter politics. It only works, if people let it.


Steve V said...

More early signs, that the strategy may backfire:

But today's unveiling of a new series of campaign ads attacking Liberal Leader Stephane Dion received no live coverage on any of the major national television networks.
Instead, Newsworld cut to the question-and-answer session after the announcement, when Conservative MPs Jason Kenney and Lawrence Cannon faced a series of tough questions.
The pair made no substantive policy announcements, choosing instead to target Dion and the main plank of his campaign platform, The Green Shift.
Reporters all but ignored the now-familiar attacks and instead questioned the two candidates on gas prices, tax policy and purported attempts to muzzle Tory candidates.

penlan said...

"Stephen Harper alluded to a "nasty" election campaign, because he knew that his party planned to run a "nasty" election campaign."

And in the early days if the Libs can stay away from "nasty" attacks & the Cons keep starting out each day like this it will be obvious to everyone that Harper was lying that the Libs were going nasty.

So let him at it. He will cut off his long, lying nose to spite his face.

Gayle said...

I agree with penlan. At the moment the LPC should not release attack ads.

I highly doubt the CPC are not going to release some policy during this election- how can they not? I know that worked for Klein in Alberta, but Alberta is not Canada. They may be trying to get the attack ads out of the way and move on to policy later, once they feel the damage is done.

As we discussed before, I do not think the LPC should ever release any "nasty" attack ads. Just stick to the facts, no matter how much the CPC do not want to acknowledge them.

Gayle said...

And another thing - what about that "agenda" Harper wanted the opposition parties to green light for him? How can he argue the opposition would not agree to passing that agenda when he does not appear to actually have one?

Dame said...

Mr Nasty Dislike /hate / all people .It is pathological .
The only thing drives him is Crave for Total Power
Look How many "bodies " are In his path he ruthlessly trampled over and never even glanced over/even in his own Party/?
He is extremely vainglorious and can't give a damn over the Hundred young men he sacrificed
In the insanely pointless war in Afghanistan . This man is the worst threat for Canada as we know it today.


Steve V said...

The best part, the Liberals can attack, but it's in reaction, so they don't appear overtly negative.

penlan said...

Gayle said:

"I highly doubt the CPC are not going to release some policy during this election- how can they not?"

Sure they can Gayle, but they will only regurgitate (don't you just love that word?) policies that the public are already aware of but haven't been completely implemented yet. They have nothing "new" to present at all. I do expect some barking on law & order issues, but they always do that. Their main focus is Steve the leader, Steve the warm, fuzzy family man. But the real focus is attack Dion relentlessly.

Anonymous said...

Hey Steve

Have you read anywhere what percentage income tax cut we'll get under the Green Shift in the first year? The literature speaks of the cuts after 4 years have elapsed, but not the immediate cuts. I'm just thinking, like I'm sure many others are, that the carbon tax will be applied in the first year, but we won't see any return until the fourth year...and a lot can happen in 4 years.

Have you seen anything that says $10/tonne applied to carbon in year one AND 0.5% off income tax in year one?

If there is something like that then the Libs need to get it out there, because all I can find re: tax cuts is " the fourth year..." statements.

If there isn't something like that or it isn't presented, its just going to feed into the inherrent cynicism that the elctorate has towards politics and politicians and they will respond positively to the "nasty" messages coming from the CPC.

Steve V said...


I assume it's phased in on the tax cut side, to correspond with the hike on carbon.