Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Today in the bizarro world of Canadian politics

Two choice items from the Globe today: "Harper makes ‘remarkable’ gains in best-prime-minister ranking" and "Cinephile Stephen Harper drops in on Crazy, Stupid Love." "He loves movies," we're told.

Meanwhile, this is the big context of the week, politically, that is going on in the background while such pieces appear in the Globe: "Clement steered G8 funding in riding, documents show," "Auditor duped on funding for G8, opposition charges," to select just some of the coverage of this week's G8 developments. Sure, the Globe is editorializing tonight on the G8 revelations, but they seem to be overly focused there on the role of public servants in the G8 Clement mess rather than on the politicians in question. Who has ultimate responsibility here? The discrepancy in information provided to the Auditor General as to the role of public servants in these questionable G8 processes needs to be cleared up, sure, but how about asking some questions about Mr. Clement and his boss rather than papering over the news. The editorial heading itself plays up a supposed equality between public servants and Clement et al. in the G8 spending: "When civil service and politics clash." Really? Is that what the G8 spending extravaganza at its core is about?

Also maddening, this line in the editorial on the mix of politics and government spending that has been seen one too many times in the last few years: "It’s not a partisan issue – Liberals have been just as complicit as Conservatives in blurring the line." That line attempts to delegitimize criticism from Liberals in the here and now, which is nonsense. Second, it serves to provide cover for the Conservatives in the everybody does it sense. 

Quite the scene. And I didn't even get into the whole "Royal" business...