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Montreal Simon: Stephen Harper’s Disastrous Day of Con Scandals

I grabbed this screen shot of Question Period yesterday with my new, shiny, but very cheap cell phone.And as you can see it didn't come out that well eh?You do get what you pay for, just like you do get what you vote for.But when I looked at it later, I thought it captured Stephen Harper's state of mind rather well.For he is desperate, he is a mess, and it was yet another disastrous day of scandals, starting with this one. Read more »

Montreal Simon: Stephen Harper and the Great Desperate War on Terror. Again

Nothing could tell us more about the dilapidated state of the Con regime, than Stephen Harper's absurd attempt yesterday to crank up the Great Terrorist Menace.For there he was at yet another staged photo-op, with his travelling "Protecting Canadians" sign, trying to make Canadians believe that our country is besieged by hordes of dangerous terrorists or tourists.In yet another other desperate attempt to scare Canadians into voting for him, so he can turn this country into a police state.When in fact, if you take a close look at his face, it's pretty clear that the most desperate and frightened (Read more…)

Montreal Simon: Michael Harris: The Three Ways Nigel Wright Could Hurt Stephen Harper

As you know the trial of Mike Duffy resumes on Monday, and as you imagine Stephen Harper must be shaking like a leaf, or a coward in a closet.Or tossing and turning in his bed at night, wondering when Nigel Wright might be called to the stand. And asked to explain, among other things, what exactly Boss Harper meant when he told his faithful henchman that the plan to bury a scandal was "good to go."Because as Michael Harris writes, while the trial may be farcical.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 and the Attack of the Con Scandals

It must be Stephen Harper's worst nightmare. Just as he's trying to scare Canadians into voting for him, with his politics of fear and his Great War on Terror.He himself must be terrified by the number of Con scandals coming out of the woodwork to tarnish his government's already soiled reputation..For as if Mike Duffy and Dean Del Mastro weren't enough to keep him awake at night.Now comes his old buddy Vic Toews, staggering out of the darkness to haunt him.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 »

Politics and its Discontents: The Wheels Of The Bus….

have been very busy of late:

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Pushed to the Left and Loving It: Will Mike Duffy’s Chickens Come Home to Roost in Harper’s Backyard?

“Because my family has no money, I’ve decided to become a prostitute. That’s right, I’m going into politics. ” ― Jarod Kintz, The Merits of Marthaism, and How Being Named Susan Can Benefit You

During the final days of the 2008 Canadian federal election campaign, the Liberals were starting to climb in the polls. Stephen Harper had not done well in the debates and Climate Change was increasing as an election issue.

According to Nik Nanos The fallout from the French and English debates shows the previous pre-debate 10 point Conservative margin is now four percentage points. Tracking shows incremental (Read more…)

Politics and its Discontents: More On Duffy

Like many others, I have been trying to fathom how Nigel Wright has escaped without charges for the cheque he wrote to Mike Duffy, while the latter has been charged with accepting a bribe. I have also been attempting to get video of two programs, Power and Politics and last Thursday’s At Issue Panel, which discuss this mystery in some detail. Unfortunately, CBC no long seems to offer the embed code for their shows, but you can watch the P&P show by clicking here. I was able to find the second show on You Tube, and you can view it (Read more…)

Alberta Diary: The most important Duffy trial must be held in the court of public opinion

Mike Duffy, back in pre-Senatorial days, but already feeling the heat. Below: A more recent shot of Senator Duffy; former prime ministerial chief of staff Nigel Wright.

How could the handoff of a $90,000 cheque to Senator Mike Duffy by the prime minister’s chief of staff not be worthy of prosecution while the acceptance of the same piece of paper by the senator is?

Wherever the trial of Mr. Duffy leads us in the months and years to come, this is the question ordinary Canadians are scratching their heads about today as they pick up a whiff of something not (Read more…)

The Canadian Progressive: RCMP’s 31 Criminal Charges Against Sen. Mike Duffy

The 31 charges the RCMP laid against suspended Sen. Mike Duffy, who was appointed to the Senate by Harper in 2008, include fraud and breach of trust.

The post RCMP’s 31 Criminal Charges Against Sen. Mike Duffy appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

Politics and its Discontents: Things Should Really Start To Get Interesting Now

As just reported by the CBC, the RCMP has decided to lay charges against disgraced Senator Mike Duffy. Let’s hope the ‘fat lady’ sings loudly:

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Politics and its Discontents: The Harper Enemies List: A Prominent Member

Yesterday I wrote about a fund-raising plea that the Harper machine has sent out to its true believers with deep pockets; the missive stressed the need for big dollars to get out the truth to Canadians about what a fine job the regime is doing, a message that is, according to the neocons, being impeded by a leftist media apparently in the thrall of Justin Trudeau.

While that letter places the media in general on the Harper Enemies List, an individual who occupies a prominent place in that august pantheon surely is Linda McQuaig, a journalist I have long admired (Read more…)

CuriosityCat: The Wright Case & The Mounties: Did they or did they not?

Yes, we consulted …

Seems to be a little bit of confusion about who was  consulted when the Mounties decided that there was no case to make against Wright. Here’s one report (my underlining): Commissioner Paulson says the facts uncovered by investigators – many of which were publicly detailed in a politically explosive search warrant released last fall – simply did not lead to the conclusion of criminal wrongdoing. The ultimate decision to drop the investigation into Mr. Wright was made by the investigative team, he says, adding he was consulted on the matter along with prosecutors. And here’s another (Read more…) . . . → Read More: CuriosityCat: The Wright Case & The Mounties: Did they or did they not?

The Cracked Crystal Ball II: No Charges Doesn’t Mean Wright Is Clean

On Friday, we learned that the RCMP will not be laying charges against Nigel Wright for writing a cheque to Mike Duffy in the amount of some $90,000 and change.  The CPC, and the PMO, seem to think that this is some kind of exoneration.  Nothing could be further from the truth. The RCMP only lays charges when they have evidence of criminal activity that is sufficiently solid to have a “reasonable expectation of conviction”.  If for any reason, the evidence is insufficient to meet that bar, charges are not laid. In no respect does this mean that what (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: Saturday Morning Links

Assorted content for your weekend reading.

- Paul Krugman explains how one’s political values figure to affect one’s view of evidence as to the success or failure of a policy: (T)he liberal and conservative movements are not at all symmetric in their goals. Conservatives want smaller government as an end in itself; liberals don’t seek bigger government per se — they want government to achieve certain things, which is quite different. You’ll never see liberals boasting about raising the share of government spending in GDP the way conservatives talk proudly about bringing that share down. Because liberals want government to (Read more…)

Politics and its Discontents: CPC slogan 2015: “No grounds for criminal charges.” *

* H/t Dan Gardner

In the twisted morality of the Harper universe, it will be claimed and conveyed as a complete vindication of the Prime Minister.

That the RCMP has found no grounds upon which to lay criminal charges against Nigel Wright in the $90,000 payoff-to-Mike-Duffy-scandal does nothing to dissolve the deep and abiding suspicions about Harper’s influence-peddling machinations was not lost on the At Issue panelists last night:

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Montreal Simon: Why the Senate Scandal Can Still Bring Down Stephen Harper

For a brief moment today I wondered whether I should remove Nigel Wright from the poster for my new and exciting season of Senategate.After the RCMP announced that he was no longer under investigation. The RCMP has ended its probe into Nigel Wright, the former chief of staff to Prime Minister Stephen Harper, and his $90,000 payment to suspended Conservative Senator Mike Duffy.But then I thought no, this scandal is still as sordid as ever. It couldn't have happened without Nigel. Bless him. And it could still bring down Stephen Harper.Read more »

Alberta Diary: Redford-Hancock Government moves ahead with plan to gut public sector pensions

Alberta Environment Minister Robin Campbell, right, in one of the rather undistinguished jackets that are causing such a brouhaha in the provincial Legislature this week. Meanwhile, Finance Minister Doug Horner, below, is moving to attack the pensions of 300,000 Alberta public employees and no one is paying much attention. Below him, NDP Leader Brian Mason, who opposes his plans, and former prime ministerial chief of staff Nigel Wright. But you’ll have to read to the bottom if you want to know what Mr. Wright has to do with this story.

Alberta Finance Minister Doug Horner gave notice yesterday that the (Read more…)

Montreal Simon: Senategate : The RCMP Goes After the PMO !!!

Oh goody. It looks as if my favourite show Senategate is back.With the whole cast of characters ready to entertain us again.And now even MORE exciting than before.With the RCMP going after the PMO !!!!Read more »

Politics and its Discontents: Guest Post: The Salamander

Responding to a post I wrote this morning commenting on a Lawrence Martin article, The Salamander offered the following trenchant assessment of what he predicts will be the Harper ‘legacy.’ Enjoy:

.. I find the fading tiger analogy problematic.. maybe its just me ..

Having a background in social work, with criminals, mood disorders, addiction, maximum security prisons etc, I tend to adapt to new terminology,diagnostic criteria, and trust evidence based medicine..More and more I trust natural consequence .. history and observation..

Tom Flanagan, a man with his own issues, demons and fallacies glorifies his apt pupil Harper.. as a (Read more…)

Politics and its Discontents: Slip Slidin’ Away

Slip sliding away, slip sliding away You know the nearer your destination, the more you’re slip sliding away – Paul Simon

I know, by his public efforts to appear reasonably normal, that Stephen Harper is a Beatles’ fan. Whether he has ever listened to or crooned any of Paul Simon’s songs is less certain. Yet I couldn’t help but think of Simon this morning as I read Lawrence Martin’s latest piece in The Globe and Mail.

Entitled The Harper machine is in disarray, Martin reflects on the many obstacles that have emerged to obstruct what I presume is Dear (Read more…)

Politics and its Discontents: I Guess Sometimes It Doesn’t Pay To Have Friends In High Places

Although I have no sympathy for those who work, either directly or indirectly, for the Harper regime, there is a story in Toronto Life entitled, With Friends Like Harper: how Nigel Wright went from golden boy to fall guy which made for some interesting reading.

Part profile of Wright and part portrait of a cold, calculating and ruthless Prime Minister willing to jettison even those closest to him, the article revealed things I was quite unaware of. For example, I did not know that Wright and Tom Long were instrumental in luring Harper back into politics after he left following (Read more…)

Politics and its Discontents: Few Escape The Bruce Carson Taint

Nigel Wright to Bruce Carson in 2011 as the later conducted his allegedly illegal lobbying:

“I’ve heard a lot of good things about you. Feel free to give me a call at any time.

You can read all about it here.

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The Disaffected Lib: Duffy’s Shadow Looms Over Harper’s Future

We won’t have long to wait for the release of the tell-all book on Mike Duffy, penned by his old journalism colleague, Dan Leger.

The book, Duffy: Stardom to Senate to Scandal,  is said to revisit the good old days when Leger met Duffy in Ottawa (1984-1990) and traces Duffy’s television career, his pursuit of a seat in the Senate and the scandal that brought him down and continues to plague Stephen Harper.

According to Leger, he and Duffy spent hours on the deck of the senator’s Cavendish cottage as Duffy spilled the beans.  Duffy maintained, as he (Read more…)