Friday, November 09, 2018

Michael Harris' Swan Song.

Pundit Michael Harris has told his readers he's leaving iPolitics - but not before giving a well deserved shot to Tony Clement and his former boss, Andrew Scheer.  Harris asks why, if Clement isn't fit to be in the Conservative caucus, he's fit to be anyone's MP?
Though he may not know it, Tony Clement is roadkill on the information highway. 
This high-ranking, veteran Conservative politician is making the same mistake that Democratic U.S. Congressman Anthony Weiner made: deluding himself into thinking that he doesn’t need to resign from public office after getting caught sexting. 
He does. 
It took Weiner a full 20 days to realize he had to resign after a photo of “his man bulge in boxer briefs” hit Twitter on May 27, 2011. He denied that it was his … well, that it was him. Then more photos showed up. Weiner still insisted he didn’t need to resign.
...Weiner and Clement held high public office. Every day they conducted the public’s business, benefactors of the public trust. What they do privately cannot be divorced from their heavy public responsibility to maintain and protect the integrity of the system they serve. Both men failed utterly to do that, which is why Weiner ultimately resigned — and Clement ought to. 
Clement was on Canada’s National Security and Intelligence Committee of Parliamentarians. That means he was privy to the country’s deepest secrets. He has admitted that he was duped into thinking his sexting, including a dubious video that he sent, was going to a consenting woman. The former Conservative now says he’s being “extorted” over their sexually explicit communications. The RCMP is investigating. This is the kind of gross recklessness that turns the hair of security officials prematurely grey.

Scheer's Folly
Doing the right thing is no longer in vogue. 
And it’s not just Clement hanging on when he should be saying goodbye. Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer has not done the right thing in the current circumstances. For the family-values party, Scheer’s initial reaction to Clement’s admission was laughable. After a stern talking to by Scheer, Clement resigned as justice critic and saw his committee roles assigned to Lisa Raitt. That done, Scheer had no problem with Clement remaining in caucus. 
Just a few hours later, Scheer reversed field. Faced with more allegations of sexting by Clement, Scheer asked him to resign from caucus so he could “respond” to these “allegations.” That leaves the door wide open for Clement to return. Not a word about the violation of public trust in play here. 
Scheer’s wishy-washy reaction is strange for another reason. From what the Conservative leader himself has claimed, Clement lied to him about the number of times he has sexted anonymous women. The initial story was that this was a one-off between consenting adults, which Scheer could apparently forgive as a “terrible lapse of judgment.” 
That meant that Scheer was willing to keep Clement in caucus after his admission of the most reckless kind of sexting. That says as much about Scheer’s judgment as it does about Clement’s.


the salamander said...

.. will have to look into where Michael Harris is off to.. I follow him via Twitter but was unaware he was in transit. He's one of Canada's journalistic gems - a truly incisive must read - always

.. 'I took him at his word' - that's what Andrew Scheer said .. My question is.. Did Tony Clement notify PM Trudeau that he was being extorted.. or did he not ? I am under the impression, it was Trudeau who appointed Clement or approved him to the top secret post
And if not, he blindsided PM Trudeau when the sexting - extortion scandal broke

It sure appears Andrew Scheer is claiming he was blindsided.. surely the citizenry of Parry Sound - Muskoka as well. Clement's political colleagues all unaware of his social media habits? Really ? I was seeing distinct rumors and clues years ago. It reminds me how Laureen Harper was living in the Chateau Laurier with an RCMP officer & her lover. And secret squirrell Ray Novak (who ??) who'd lived above the Harper's garage.. was being described as the 2nd most powerful politition in Canada behind Stephen Harper.

Anyway.. Scheer hit the nail right on the head with his fopish girning dimply forehead. 'I took him at his word' and Tony Clement's 'word' turned out to be horseshit. Remember too, who cut and ran, I believe it was with Ms Rempel in tow - when the gunman had been shot dead in front of the Parliamentary Library. Tony bolted from an exit and up some stairs with her.. his story circulated & was that they escaped right past the ongoing gunfight.. (I call bullshit !) and secreted themselves in an unlocked office upstairs while Harper hid his ass in a broom closet, before 'being whisked away' - Bala locals n yokels still laugh & snicker about Tony's heroic plunge into the Moon River to save a drowning woman.. he was 'just walking along' and aw shucks folks.. anybody would have jumped in to save the day.. I'm not really a hero .. argh .. and let's not did up the 50 million $ skeleton again.. that he buried in Bala at midnight with John Baird and a dead cat

Its the era of bone spur heroism meets social media man bulge and flopdick inappropriate behavior - holly hell man ! Did you see the wang bulge on that guy ! I guess its all in service or is it circus ? ? As Nation Building Gets Great Again

Lorne said...

The reaction of Clement's constituents will say a lot about the state of our democracy, Mound. If they are fine letting him remain and even stand for re-election, presumably as an independent, we are farther gone than I thought.

Northern PoV said...

"The reaction of Clement's constituents "

There are strange things done
under the Muskoka sun.

(Apologies to R.W.S.)

Owen Gray said...

Lorne is right. An election isn't that far away. If his constituents let Tony stay, the rot has gone very deep.

the salamander said...

.. Lorne and Owen have it partly right re Tony Clement's continued federal involvement as an MP. But our current political party systems tell 'us' - the electorate, who we get to vote for. We can cheer for 2 or 3 'brands' - that of the so called 'conservative' brand being the key re Tony Clement. Its only during an election and related voting that the citizenry really has a say.. but realistically if neither Liberals or NDP mount a strong candidate in opposition of Clement.. nothing will change. A dead cat at midnight or a sleaze like Clement could win for Parry Sound - Muskoka unless other parties decide its a wounded ex-Harper riding there for the taking.

Meanwhile in the 'war room' of Andrew Scheer, Jenni Byrne, Arthur Hamilton et al, the 'brain rust' will huddle and poll via every backdoor available.. and perhaps airdrop a likely gawd fearing christian evangelical into cottage country.. and send flopdick Clement under the bus quite publically.. 'purged' so to speak.. a great 'cleansing' and halleluja eh ! ? An all-star candidate might come to save the day.. a perhaps a Patrick Brown or Jason Kenney, itching to get back to Ottawa and the political big leagues.

Look for a provincial sleazer to jump in there soonly.. probably someone like Stephen Lecce from Ford's provincial encampment.. totally familiar with how election fraud is done, where the money is hidden.. and with Stephen Harper and Ray Novak stirring the pot.. a little help from Julian Fantino re massive Brampton, Richmond Hill, Vaughn funding and double cooked books dontcha know.. plus some serious live and robo warfare.

After all, the Harper coven has all the data you could imagine, on every voter, donor, parent, address, employment, tax return, political activity, purchasing power .. you name it.. they have it in their 'Nation Builder' voter database.. and if one thinks they did not dig deep where they should not have been sniffing and gathering while they had privileged and secretive CSIS access.. you're in dreamland. Black Ops baby.. Black Ops..

Anonymous said...

I agree with Owen Gray... Anyong