Tuesday, October 05, 2010
Stephen Harper: When the Monster Shows His Stripes
There's at least one good thing about Stephen Harper. Every now and then he just can't help showing us what kind of cloth he is cut from. And it's not pretty.
Michael Ignatieff asks a serious question about a problem that is causing a lot of suffering in Canada.
When Michael Ignatieff rose first to report that he’d visited a family across the river in Gatineau this morning, there were merely groans from the government side. Mike, Mr. Ignatieff reported en français, had cancer. Helen, his wife, had made various sacrifices to care for him. Why, Mr. Ignatieff wondered, did the government side insist on reducing corporate tax rates when such families were in need?
And this is the best Harper could come up with...
“I wish the Liberal Party would actually get its messages right,” he lamented, holding in his hand a copy of the opposition’s policy pamphlet. “I look at this brochure where on page six the Liberals talk about health care and on page four they promote somebody smoking.”
Can you believe that ? A cheap shot about a cigarette... in a picture? When we're talking about cancer, a problem that causes untold misery, and a plan that could help seniors live at home in dignity.
Instead of ending up in some ghastly institution, alone and lonely in their soiled diapers.
Oh boy. You know Don Martin suggests that Stephen Harper might want to change his monster act if he wants a majority.
But only provides more evidence that he can't.
(For the record, the only time I’ve aggressively sought official comment from Mr. Harper was following the death of Calgary Herald reporter Michelle Lang in Kandahar. My request was rejected, a spokesman told me, because it would set a precedent for Mr. Harper to comment every time a reporter was killed. Now THAT’S mean-spirited.)
Because it's not in his nature. He just can't feel the pain of others.
What distinguishes all of these people from the rest of us is an utterly empty hole in the psyche, where there should be the most evolved of all humanizing functions.
Sound familiar? I thought so.
The bottom line?
A man who can turn a question about cancer into a joke is a monster without a heart. And unfit to be Prime Minister.
So can the monster find his heart?
I doubt it.
But that's another story....