Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Stephen Harper and the Politics of Fear

He's angry, tortured man. A vengeful nerd with delusions of grandeur... and a foul bully. He uses American-style wedge issues to pit Canadian against Canadian. He appeals to base emotion instead of noble reason.

His is the government of the brutally backward, the Big Lie, and the broken promise.

But nothing this monstrous political thug does is as bad as his politics of fear.

Conservatives want Canadians to be very afraid as the next election creeps closer. Criminals at the door, Russians probing Arctic sovereignty and prying statisticians poking through family secrets are strands in a rope Stephen Harper wants voters to loop around the neck of nanny-state Liberals, the socialist NDP and separatist Bloc.

Never mind the absence of evidence that packing prisons makes citizens safer, that spending at least $16 billion on cold war stealth fighters is a national defence priority or that vandalizing the census is anything other than a feel-good placebo with sickening side effects. Clinging to federal power is now an exercise in appealing to the gut, not the brain.

It's easy to scare people. The MSM  make it look like the crime rate is out of control,  when it's really going down. It's effective, especially when it targets the vulnerable. Why do you think if only the over 65s voted, the Conservatives would win 200 seats?

But it's also deeply disturbing. It's a Big Lie. It gets in the way of more intelligent ways to fight crime and poverty. It replaces reason with the howl of the mob. It would force us to live a dark, scary Big Brother world. It's the pablum of every fascist leader from Bush to Mussolini. And sooner or later it leads to a police state.

So I like what this Liberal Senator is doing.

A Liberal senator is once again pushing back against Justice Minister Rob Nicholson’s accusations that the Grits are stalling his crime bills.

“This problem is, mandatory minimum sentences do not deter crime. And this is a conclusion you yourself reached.”

We need people to expose the lies... and the hypocrisy. But we also have to fit it into a larger narrative. We need to challenge The Fear itself.

They will lead you to a dark, frightening, barbed wire society that looks a lot like ugly Amerika. We will take you brighter, safer more beautiful Canadian place, where we don't live afraid, and our values RULE.

We need to fight back. Like we did at the beginning of this long and horrible year, when Harper prorogued Parliament. 

And for one glorious moment we stopped being so damn passive.

And marched out of the darkness into the light...

The struggle continues. 

A coalition is a good and Canadian thing.

The Cons must be defeated. We want our country back.


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