Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Because when I hear "ethnic outreach" Jason Kenney just pops into my head

Hooaaaah! Thank you for leaking the Conservative strategy session on "ethnic outreach" to the Globe, anonymous insider, whoever you are. And just in time for Throne Speech Day too.

Before reviewing the "ethnic outreach" presentation, below...I have a question. How does the PM's calling for Muslim women to lift their veils when voting, despite the law not requiring them to do so, in order to seek electoral advantage by appealing to base resentment against minorities in Quebec factor into the "ethnic outreach" programme? Just wondering...

Now is it just me or does the fact that they actually have to come up with a Power Point presentation on "ethnic outreach" demonstrate just how clueless a starting point these guys are working from. And the very term, "ethnic outreach," used as it is here seems so clinical. This is like writing a "How-To" manual on making friends. It just doesn't happen that way.

But let's do check out the slides. Some of my personal favourite slides from the presentation are as follows:

Yes, outreach means going outside "your normal comfort zone." Because dealing with ethnic communities, to Conservatives, appears to mean not being comfortable. That seems to be their operating presumption here. It's really kind of insulting.

And if you'll look real carefully at the next one, you'll see a big old bold font highlighting the word "Jewish, " as it appears that the Jewish community is high on Harper's "outreach" list. How patronized and targeted must Jewish communities be feeling today?

By contrast, look at this next slide. Notice that the word "Black" is not bolded at all:

What gives, guys? Did you forget to use the bold for that one word in the entirely bolded list? (Click to enlarge in order to see more clearly.) Or are some communities being written off, or what? That's the kicker with this strategy...that the Conservatives are cherry picking ethnic communities like this. It's not an inclusive strategy, it's exclusive. This is why they historically don't get these votes. Hello?

All in all, very instructive insight into the brainiac strategery going on in Conservative leadership circles. Frankly, I am distinctly unimpressed.