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Accidental Deliberations: Sunday Morning Links

This and that for your Sunday reading.

- PressProgress documents how the Cons are driving Canada’s economy into the ditch. And Michael Babad reports that economists with a better grounding in reality than Stephen Harper are begging the provinces not to impose the austerity demanded by the Cons.

- Kara Santokie writes that if the Cons’ balanced-budget legislation has any effect at all, it will be to attack Canada’s social programs when they’re needed most. And Louis-Philippe Rochon sees the false balance bill as standing out even among the Cons’ bad ideas.

- Dylan Matthews questions whether workers present and (Read more…)

In This Corner: Stuff Happens, week 14: And they’re off! But why?

This week, Premier Jim Prentice called his uncalled-for election. The question remains, why?

The election — a year ahead of the lawful election date — has no validity. The PCs have a majority that any government in Canada, or the world, would kill for (and in some countries, that’s exactly how they do it). His “transformative” budget is unpopular, an ugly hodge-podge of tax hikes and service cuts. It does not, in any way, address the basic problem of the Alberta economy. The only possible outcome of this election is a win for the PCs, of course. But with the (Read more…)

Montreal Simon: Why Wasn’t Nigel Wright Charged in the Duffy Affair?

Ever since the trial of Mike Duffy began, I keep getting asked the same haunting question: If Duffy is being charged with accepting a bribe, why wasn't Nigel Wright charged with bribing him by cutting him that $90,000 cheque?And I have to explain that the RCMP has yet to explain that decision. But it seems that they didn't believe that Wright obtained any "personal benefit" from that blatant bribe to try to keep Ol' Duff from opening his big mouth.And then I have to explain that yes it's true, and no I'm not insane, and since I'm not (Read more…)

Montreal Simon: Stephen Harper’s Most Horrible and Disastrous Week

Well he's off to the Summit of the Americas in Panama, along with his travelling photo-op.But despite the cheery forced smile, and the fact that nobody in Latin America wants to see him, Stephen Harper must be so glad to be leaving Canada.Because he couldn't have had a more horrible and disastrous week.Read more »

Accidental Deliberations: On trial and error

It may be true – as argued by Lawrence Martin – that Mike Duffy’s expense fraud trial will serve as the most prominent point of discussion about the Harper Cons’ stay in power. But we should be careful not to rely on it too much as a counterweight to the Cons’ self-promotion – nor to allow broader concerns about the Cons to be drowned out by the minutiae of Duffy’s actions.

The need for caution arises out of the nature of the trial. It shouldn’t have come as any surprise that the main points to be aired and decided involve (Read more…)

Babel-on-the-Bay: What’s the Senate all about Hair?

There is something of a contest going on. The Hair might draw the line at taking off his stuffed shirt and streaking the tourists gaping at Ottawa’s Confusion Square but no holds are barred in distracting Canadians from the Duffy Trial.

The Duffy Trial is the big show in Ottawa now and it’s getting the news media all a twitter. It is where the chubby one-time spokesman for the Hair Senator Mike Duffy is on trial for accepting a bribe.

But just a minute: maybe the Hair can explain to us why the person accepting the bribe is charged and (Read more…)

Montreal Simon: Michael Harris: Why Stephen Harper Should be Testifying at the Duffy Trial

In my last post I wrote about how the Mike Duffy trial is already turning into a real nightmare for Stephen Harper.Duffy's lawyer is trying to bind the two men together, and show how close they once were.Which can only damage Great Leader, and further taint his reputation.But as Michael Harris writes, if there was any justice Stephen Harper would also be in court, and testifying under oath. Read more »

Montreal Simon: Stephen Harper and Mike Duffy: The Love Story

I always knew that Stephen Harper would never be able to escape the large shadow of Mike Duffy. I knew that he broke the rules to make him his favourite fundraiser. His inflated cash machine who could milk gazillions of dollars out of his sucker base. But who knew it was such a torrid love story?

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Montreal Simon: The Duffy Diary and the Panic in the PMO

Lordy. The Duffy trial is just beginning, and I don't think I've ever seen the fanatics in the PMO looking so frightened, or their Great Leader in a such a state of obvious panic.And it's not just because so many of them are going to have to testify under oath, or the thousands of their secret e-mails that Duffy's lawyer is brandishing like a weapon.Or the fact that the trial is already reminding Canadians that Stephen Harper bent the rules to make Duffy a Senator…

So he could be his porky fundraiser.What's also terrifying them is Duffy's Diary. Read more »

BigCityLib Strikes Back: Ezra Levant Out 72 Large

…for costs brought about by losing the defamation case brought against him by Khurrum Awan:

Meanwhile, some interesting bits of info emerged from the Duffy trial.  One is this daily itinerary forFebruary 8, 2010:

A meeting for pizza with Ez and the PM’s wife.  Also this: Repeated appearances in the Duffy Diaries to helping Vivian Krause (@FairQuestions), who researched enviro charities such as Tides.— Glen McGregor (@glen_mcgregor) April 8, 2015

Vian Krause originally did some pretty shoddy research purporting to show that Canadian enviro groups were taking foreign money to aid Alaskan salmon fisherman at (Read more…)

Montreal Simon: Why Stephen Harper Will Be Hurt by the Duffy Trial

If Stephen Harper thought he could run away from the trial of Mike Duffy, as he was trying to do yesterday at a photo-op in Vancouver. Which is about as far away as you can get from Ottawa, and Ol' Duff's even more massive photo-op.The look on Harper's face tells me that he now knows he can't run, knows that the scandal will hurt him. And that it could be the death of a thousand cuts.Starting with this one.Read more »

Montreal Simon: Why the Duffy Trial is Also the Trial of the Harper Regime

I wouldn't be surprised if Stephen Harper spends the next two months in the usual place he runs to, and the same position he assumes, whenever he feels threatened.

Whether it's by the one-man terrorist army who stormed Parliament, or by the trial of his soiled superstar senator Mike Duffy.

In fact, I'll even go so far to say, that I wouldn't be surprised if on this occasion, Great Closet Leader is soiling himself. And with good reason.

Because as Lawrence Martin points out, it's not just Duffy who is on trial, so is the filthy Con regime. Read more »

Montreal Simon: Stephen Harper and the Day of the Duffy

He has tried to run from the scandal from the day it was exposed. Tried to make us believe that he knew nothing.That it was all Nigel Wright's fault, and that when he told him the plan was "good to go" he didn't mean pay off Mike Duffy to buy his silence.But now the day of judgement has finally arrived.And although only Duffy is on trial, it will expose the ghastly innards of the Con regime. Read more »

Accidental Deliberations: Wednesday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material for your mid-week reading.

- CBC reports on the latest research showing that Canada would save billions every year with a national pharmacare plan. And Thomas Walkom argues that politics are standing in the way of what should be a no-brainer from a policy standpoint.

- Richard Gwyn writes that most Canadians seem to be willing to put up with nearly anything in order to keep a relatively secure job – even as it’s far from sure that many workers can count on that being available.

- Lawrence Martin discusses the Cons’ strategy of provocation, pandering and prejudice (Read more…)

Montreal Simon: Stephen Harper, Mike Duffy, and the PMO Nightmare

Stephen Harper's PMO is one of the most sinister organizations in Canada, and one of the most secretive.No decent Canadian has ever been able to penetrate its murky darkness, or know exactly how it works. Or how its monstrous master controls his faithful fanatics.But now all that is about to change, and for Harper and those fanatics it must be a real nightmare.Because as Michael Harris writes, the Mike Duffy trial is about to blow their secret world wide open.Read more »

Montreal Simon: Stephen Harper and the Merry-Go-Round of Con Corruption

It's like some ghastly merry-go-round. Stephen Harper's groaning circle of scandal.One moment it's Mike Duffy or Pamela Wallin.The next moment it's Dean del Mastro.And today it was Diane Finley's turn to mount the stinking nag of Con corruption. Read more »

The Canadian Progressive: Ex-Conservative Senator Wallin committed “breach of trust and fraud”: RCMP

The RCMP announced Monday that ex-Conservative Senator Pamela Wallin, a Harper appointee, “committed the offences of breach of trust and fraud.”

The post Ex-Conservative Senator Wallin committed “breach of trust and fraud”: RCMP appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

Montreal Simon: Breaking: The Duffy Trial Just Got Bigger and Better !!!

We always knew it was going to be a big trial. We knew that Mike Duffy would make sure it was.Especially now that he has had time to think about how Stephen Harper treated him, and he's REALLY pumped or pissed.And of course, as I pointed out yesterday, the perp walk of PMO witnesses will be bigger than the Macy's Parade…

But believe it or not, as big as it already is, the trial just got even BIGGER. Read more »

Montreal Simon: Why Stephen Harper Will Not Escape the Duffy Trial

Well I can only imagine how grim the mood must be in Stephen Harper's monstrous PMO. After so many of Great Leader's most fanatical followers were subpoenaed to take the stand at the Mike Duffy trial.And no doubt their depraved master is trying to console them. Which can't be easy.Not when he's shaking in his boots, or in his closet…

Even though, unlike so many of his little monsters, it looks like he himself won't have to testify. Read more »

Montreal Simon: Stephen Harper and the Dirty Secrets that Could Destroy Him

I don't know what is keeping Stephen Harper awake at night these days. But judging from his deathly appearance he isn't getting much sleep.And I bet there are a lot of things on his mind, that keep him tossing and turning in his bed. Or wandering around the grounds of 24 Sussex Drive dressed only in a housecoat.His biggest fear is probably the economy, which is threatening to envelop him like a shroud. But as Michael Harris points out, the biggest monkey on his back is probably still Mike Duffy. Read more »

Politics and its Discontents: A Clear And Present Danger?

Only for some, I’m happy to report.

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Montreal Simon: Stephen Harper and the Day of Reckoning

Well there he was last night attending a Climate Summit dinner in New York along with his Con cousin David Cameron.After skipping the summit itself. And while Cameron seems very chatty and was no doubt telling him how the Queen "purred" when she heard the Scottish referendum result. Knowing how much Harper loves the Queen AND cats.Great Leader seems troubled or very far away, as if staring at his own bleak future, or wondering how he's going to dodge this one. Read more »

Politics and its Discontents: Some Nightmares Are Real

Sleep tight, Prime Minister Harper.

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Montreal Simon: Will Mike Duffy Force an Early Election or Harper’s Early Resignation?

A few days ago I told you that I honestly believe that Stephen Harper is preparing for an early election to try to avoid the trial of Mike Duffy.In case the trial should start soon enough to be a factor in the next election campaign.And some of my friends said they thought I was pushing it, that he just wants to be ready so he can strike ANYTIME.And they may be right. He may be looking for a war so he can pose as a Great Strong Leader. Or waiting for a big trial so he can (Read more…)

Montreal Simon: Why Stephen Harper is Terrified of Mike Duffy

It's taken a long time, but Mike Duffy's trial process has finally begun, and you can be sure that Stephen Harper must be absolutely terrified.Especially after Duffy's lawyer said Harper could be called to testify. Suspended senator Mike Duffy’s lawyer will not rule out calling Prime Minister Stephen Harper as a witness, as his client’s fraud case goes to trial.fter petitioning the court Tuesday morning to set the earliest possible trial date for his client, Donald Bayne said the defence is “considering any potential witness. It’s too early to rule anything out.” And Ol' Duff (Read more…)