First, we have the Guergis-Jaffer catastrophe in all of its many splendours. Helena Guergis while an MP and Harperite minister of the Crown tells everyone within earshot at the Charlottetown airport that the city is a hellhole (or, as has also been reported, a “shithole”). Her husband Rahim Jaffer, mercifully a defeated Conservative MP, thinks it’s alright to use her office from which to lobby for money from government coffers for his clients. Jaffer also does not believe laws that apply to ordinary Canadians, should apply to him - and so he goes about his lobbying without bothering to register. The same Jaffer, still flaunting the law, gives testimony before a parliamentary committee that can only be charitably described as a crock. Guergis finds nothing wrong with writing a letter to a Simcoe county pooh-bah – namely her cousin – promoting her husband’s company. Conservative ministers, upon being requested by Jaffer to consider handing out gazillions to his clients, fall all over themselves to give him a hearing . . . . yada, yada, yada.
Then we have another Harperite minister, Jean-Pierre Blackburn, who berates security employees at the Ottawa airport for not allowing him to take a large bottle of tequila on the plane with him.
We also have the Prime Minister himself using every possible obstruction (including spending a million dollars of taxpayers’ money and using the services of 16 staffers to vet defence and foreign affairs department documents) to ensure that the Canadian public be kept in the dark about whether Canadian officials (including himself and his ministers) have been guilty of war crimes in allowing detainees to fall into the hands of Afghan security personnel by whom they were sure to be tortured. See: http://www.vancouversun.com/news/spent+vetting+detainee+documents/2982904/story.html
And yesterday, we heard from Conservative Senator Nancy Ruth (who received her appointment to the red chamber courtesy of Liberal PM Paul Martin, in one of his many bone-headed moves). Ruth, who carries the distinguished pedigree of the Ontario Jackman clan, while addressing a group of women who were critical of the Harper government’s decision not to fund abortion as part of the G8 initiative to reduce deaths of mothers and young children, told them to, “Shut the fuck up – on this issue.” See: http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/feminist-senator-nancy-ruth-tells-aid-groups-to-drop-abortion-fight/article1555609/
Quite apart from leading Canada incrementally down the road to perdition through legislative and regulatory changes, policy changes, and Order-in-Council and judicial appointments, all of which reflects a hard right change of direction, the government increasingly shows contempt for parliament and the Canadian people.
Canadians had better start paying attention to what is going on so that we soon salvage a country that still remains recognizable. If this is allowed to continue for much longer, when they do finally get around to turfing this gang, the task of turning it around may not be easy.