Monday, May 11, 2015

Elizabeth May and Stephen Harper's Big Omar Problem

I'm very sorry to see that Elizabeth May is very sorry about livening up the deadly dull Press Gallery Dinner, with a choice comment about Stephen Harper and his cabinet. 

Green party Leader Elizabeth May says she is "very apologetic" about remarks she made on the weekend that included profanity and insulted the federal cabinet about how it has treated Omar Khadr.

May played a recording of "Welcome back Kotter" -- a theme song from a 1970s sitcom -- and stated that Khadr has "more class than the whole f---ing cabinet."

Because while she does owe everyone an apology for playing the theme song from "Welcome back Kotter." That was a faux pas.

In the matter of Omar Khadr she was only speaking truth to power.

Khadr does have more class than the whole federal cabinet. As does Elizabeth May.

And it's Stephen Harper who has the Big Omar Problem.

The reason I say that is because I have been struck by how many Canadians seem to have changed their feelings about Khadr after seeing him and hearing him for the first time...

The day before that news conference 49% of those who voted in a Power and Politics poll thought he was a threat to society.

The day after the news conference more than 70% said they had changed their minds about him.

That huge and sudden swing is also reflected in the comment pages of newspapers all over the country. And in letters like this one. 

Tut-tutting like sour Victorian schoolmarms, Prime Minister Stephen Harper and his talking point-equipped ministers speculate that Omar Khadr is a danger to Canadians. Out on bail, Khadr presented himself last Thursday as an articulate, reasonable young man with no apparent grudge over his questionable imprisonment as a child, including torture at the hands of U.S. government agents.

If those torturers enjoyed what they did to Khadr and now walk free in the U.S., they may visit Canada where we can speculate that their urges to inflict harm could lead them to commit awful crimes here. 

So, one must ask, Mr. Harper, who do you speculate is the greater threat to Canadians? Are you with the torturers or against them?

And when Stephen Harper loses the support of a Sun columnist, in Calgary of all places, you know he's in trouble. 

This unrepentant redneck — whose attitude towards the ‘War on Terror’ can be helpfully summed up in this handy, seven-word phrase, “Kill em all, let God sort them out” — has one thing to say after notorious war criminal Omar Khadr has been turned loose on the Canadian public. 

Welcome home, kid. And good luck. You’ll need it.

For his attempt to demonize Khadr appears to have backfired big time.

Under Canadian law, if Khadr had been convicted of murder on our soil, he’d have been freed six years ago. But by any reasonable standard, Omar Khadr is not culpable. He is a victim. A child soldier who required therapy and rehabilitation. Not illegal incarceration. Certainly not to be declared public enemy No. 1 by Harper.

And when in a few days time the Supreme Court delivers a judgement on whether Khadr should have been treated as a young offender, rather than being sent to an adult prison. And will almost certainly rule in his favour.

Stephen Harper will be left looking like even more of a bully.

Or even more of a sadistic monster...

And even worse for his chances of winning the next election, it will surely make many Canadian wonder whether they can trust ANYTHING he says about ANYTHING.

Which raises a fascinating question. Could the Guantanamo Kid, who Harper tortured for so long for crass political purposes, turn out to be his nemesis?

And wouldn't that be ironic?

The child soldier in the orange jumpsuit came back to Canada to torture Harper.

And in the court of public opinion dressed HIM up in orange...

Yes indeed, wouldn't that be poetic justice? 

Liberated by Canada's most famous prisoner.

And what a wonderful end to a horrible story...

Please click here to recommend this post at Progressive Bloggers.


  1. Anonymous7:43 AM

    Omar Khadr is a classic example of why any admissions while being tortured are inadmissable. If someone were pulling out my finger nails or waterboarding me, I'd admit to pretty much damn near anything they wanted to make it stop.
    Elizabeth May was only reflecting the truth and has no need to apologize.
    It's Stephen Harper and his cabinet who should be apologizing for their shameless, soulless disregard for humanity.

    1. hi anon...yes I agree, she was telling the truth, and I hope that people give her a break. I know that travelling back and forth to BC in a day or so can be very exhausting. And yes the Harper regime's treatment of Omar Khadr has been absolutely bestial, and if they had any decency they would apologize. But they don't so they won't....

  2. I have been following Omar Khadr's situation for years, Simon, and I share your hope that he will turn out to be Harper's nemesis. I fervently hope that it will dawn on increasing numbers of voters to ask this question: "If Harper lied to us about Khadr, in what other areas has he been twisting the truth and manipulating us?"

    The answer, if they did deeply enough will, I'm sure, surprise many.

    1. hi suddenly struck me that that the cognitive dissonance between what the Harperites portrayed Khadr as, and what Canadians saw on their TV screens, is probably the most devastating exposure of what the Cons would have us believe, and reality. So hopefully it will make some wonder about what other things might Harper be lying. Of course I admit that would be my fondest hope, for it would give the saga of Omar Khadr an absolutely sensational ending. But it's apparently small things like that can change the complexion of a campaign. And the fact that the Cons are not using Khadr in their fund-raising e-mails, as they have done so many times before, tells me they know that too...

  3. Anonymous8:20 AM

    I agree with Elizabeth and I don't think she should have to apologize to that bunch of journalists who don't do their job of holding the government to account. Cozy little clique Ottawa in which no one gets held to account. "If we tell the truth he might cut off our access." - what a lame excuse.

    1. hi anon...yes I too have been disgusted by the sanctimonious statements of some of the Press Gallery reporters, and the should get off their high horses and try being a little bit more human. It is after all only the Press Gallery dinner. Which if it wasn't being held in that inbred village called Ottawa, would be held in some Chinese restaurant or whatever, and would hardly be noticed...

  4. Go Elizabeth : you said what I think !

    Is it just me or does Lisa not look like one of those big, dumb, high school football tackles working as a bouncer at a second rate night club ?

    1. hi rumleyfips....yes that was my reaction too, and judging from the comments in the papers the reaction of a lot of Canadians. As for Raitt, I do have to give her some credit for trying to get her friend out of further trouble. But yes I too noticed those big arms, and she probably would make a good bouncer... ;)

  5. Anonymous9:40 AM

    She wins a free lunch with is pathetic islamist terrorist Omar at Joe Beef

    1. hi anon...yes I saw that the right-wing nuts and Khadr haters did manage to intimidate Joe Beef. But then most of those right-wingers are more American than Canadian, Joe Beef's offer was a good one, and I'm very sorry that restaurant was intimidated into backing down. But that's OK, if Omar is ever in Montreal, I would definitely buy him an even better smoked meat sandwich at Shwartz's...

    2. haha I will tell him Simon!

    3. Simon, I have several Arab-Muslim friends who like to eat at Schwartz!

      I was disappointed in Joe Beef; unfortunately as an expensive restaurant, a lot of his clientele includes they kind of "beefs" who come here for the Grand Prix (also known as the Grand Pricks). Though the original Joe Beef was the "sailors' friend" who did a lot to help dockers, sailors and other workers in the port.

  6. Noah Patterson10:07 AM

    I wish people paid as much attention to May as they have to her "outburst". Maybe she needs to have more of them if that's what it takes to get people listening.

    1. hi Noah...we have become a very judgemental and hypocritical country, pinched and nasty. A lot of Canadians seem to think that people should be sentenced according to how they feel about them, instead of what the law dictates. So they will give Elizabeth May a hard time. The pompous assholes at the Press Gallery seem particularly offended that anyone could defile the sanctity of their tacky little dinner. They actually think they're part of the power structure, and service the Cons like hookers...

  7. I'm with E. May too she should not have apologized Harper and his minions don't. Oh I forgot one tearful apology in The House of Commons in all the years they have been governing.

    As far as Omar goes I personally hope he runs as an independent in Harper's riding Calgary Southwest and gets a landslide victory turfing Harper off his home turf. Don't laugh it is possible ;)


    1. hi Mogs...let her apologize for using the F-word, because after all this is Canada. *Sigh* But make it clear that she meant what she said, because it couldn't be more true. As for Omar Khadr I just hope he can accomplish his dream of working as a health worker, because he seems like an empathetic person and I thin he would be a good one...

  8. Interesting isn't it Simon,when Canadians are lied too by their PM, they think he's telling them the truth, but once they learn what the truth really is and that their PM has lied, they side with the truth. They have yet to know that Harper lies about almost everything.

    1. hi Pamela... as I said in my post I have been pleasantly surprised at the way public opinion has changed after people got a chance to see and hear from Omar. People remember things like that more than they remember the other ways the Cons are caught lying. So hopefully it could have a major effect on the election. I don't think anything could make me happier than seeing Khadr help take down Harper...

  9. e.a.f.10:40 PM

    Elizabeth May has nothing to apologize for! Steve harper has a lot of apologize for.

    Did hear from friend in Calgary that a radio station "aired' Omar Khadr's lawyer's statement in full. She said it was a wonderful moment to hear some one tell it like it really is about harper and his attitude towards Omar Khadr.

    Lets hope steve and his slimers are gone by the next election so Canada can once more become a democracy. Right now we are starting to look a lot like those countries steve carries on about. You have to wonder why steve hates Putin so much, when in my opinion they share so much..........

    1. hi e.a.f... I hugely admire Dennis Edney for having defended Khadr so well and for so long. And of course I'm proud that he is a Scottish Canadian. Ahem. And yes won't it be a wonderful day when we can all lead normal Canadian lives and not have to worry what that filthy Con cult is going to do next? I live for that day...