Sunday, October 27, 2013
Stephen Harper's Book of Fables - Logged and Chronicled
The closer Shifty Steve Harper gets to the political gallows, the better, the richer and more fulsome his memory becomes. It all flows out in a progression of fables, each more obviously contrived than the last.
When the Wright-Duffy scandal unexpectedly broke in the media, Steve said his prize assets - his top drawer chief of staff, Nigel Wright - had merely done the Wright thing in getting his "most valuable" senator, Mike Duffy, the funds to make good his debt to the Senate and Canadian taxpayers.
That's Steve getting caught off-balance, taken by surprise before he can conjure up a suitable fantasy that his base, the faithful Conservative gullibillies will swallow.
A few days after exonerating Nigel Wright, Shifty Steve said the guy had to go (as though that was Steve's decision - laugh, giggle). But Shifty assured Parliament and the Canadian people that Wright acted alone and that nobody else in the top tiers of his prime minister's office who could have, should have and would have tipped him off knew anything about Wright-Duffy. They didn't know so how could he, Shifty Steve?
Shifty was quick to add that the transaction between Wright and Duffy was unacceptable or worse and had he any inkling of it, he would have reared up on his hind legs in righteous indignation and put an immediate end to it.
As the scandal refused to just go away and continued to close on him, Shifty recanted Fable Two and admitted that Wright-Duffy wasn't quite the secret he had said a few months earlier. Shifty said there were a few people inside the PMO who knew of it but just not him.
Wait a minute, when Shifty rolled out Fable Two, he insisted that no one inside the PMO new anything about Wright-Duffy. No one as in no one, nobody, no staffer. It was all Wright's doing and he kept it secret. How could he make that claim unless he got all his little minions together and asked them? Did he not ask them or did they just lie their asses off to the nation's ultimate control freak? Of course there's a third possibility. Shifty Steve may have been lying through his teeth from the get go and is still telling whatever lie seems necessary to fit the constantly emerging facts and yet still prevent the scandal from morphing into Wright-Duffy-Harper.
At times like this it can be very helpful to look at how a person has behaved in the past. Hmm, let me see, let me see. Oh, I know, what about that guy, Bruce Carson? Yes, Bruce Carson, the disbarred lawyer, convicted fraudster, ex-jailbird that Shifty personally admitted to the top tier of his prime minister's office. The old geezer with the 22-year old 'former' escort girlfriend. Shifty's most valuable fixer.
Ah, yes. Bruce Carson. The guy who longtime Tory operative, then RCMP commish, Bubbles Elliott, swept through the security vetting despite five fraud convictions, disbarment, jail time and two bankruptcies - that Bruce Carson.
As your humble scribe wrote in April, 2011:
Harper says he didn't know, he was let down, Privy Council procedures failed. Maybe that sort of bullshit is palatable in Red Deer or Moose Jaw but don't try to peddle it in Ottawa. One of my Tory friends volunteered that there were repeated warnings given to Harper's staff. Apparently everybody failed, everybody that is except Harper.
Does this sound familiar? Discern any patterns yet? This is Bruce Carson, Fable One. Blame unnamed staffers and plead complete and total ignorance. Claim that if you had only known, none of this ever would have happened. You would have seen to that. Just add water, stir, and wait for the scandal to magically disappear.
But it was in the Bruce Carson affair, perhaps we should call it Carson-Harper, that we saw how effortlessly Shifty moved on to Fable Two when his first pack of lies wasn't quite enough to kill off the scandal. Within the month, Shifty's Fable One denial ran up on the rocks of reality and that's when Shifty Steve transitioned to Fable Two mode.
Suddenly Shifty came back with a straight face and said, well okay, he knew about some of Carson's criminal record, the fraud, the disbarment, the misappropriation, the jail time but he thought a stretch inside the Harper PMO would rehabilitate old Bruce. Yeah, right. Sending Carson to the PMO for rehab is sort of like sending a wayward girl to a brothel to mend her ways.
It was an audacious, bald-faced lie - and yet it worked. The prime ministerial lap dogs, a.k.a. the parliamentary press gallery, went back to their labours of rewriting government press releases, Carson hightailed it to Calgary and the whole thing died just like the stench eventually departs the dung heap. Shifty Steve didn't even have to make a ritual sacrifice of his top aides.
It must be pretty obvious that our prime minister is an inveterate liar who will say whatever he thinks he must to get himself out of a jam, tailoring his lies to conform to changing facts on the ground, confident that the media scribes are just too cowed to ever call "bullshit" on him. It's something of an artform for Shifty Steve. Wright-Duffy-Harper is an obvious carbon copy of Carson-Harper, only with one or two extra chapters.