Wednesday, May 29, 2013

The Day Stephen Harper Was Grilled Like a Criminal

It was without a doubt the best Question Period I have ever watched.

The day Stephen Harper was finally forced to answer questions about the Senate scandal.

And was roasted like a chicken, or grilled like a criminal.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper faced a barrage of hostile questions in the House of Commons today over his former chief of staff's repayment of Senator Mike Duffy's expenses. At times, Harper seemed shaken under persistent, specific questioning by Opposition NDP Leader Tom Mulcair in particular.

Mulcair, a former lawyer, seemed like a prosecuting attorney, with terse one-sentence questions aimed at Harper as if he were an accused on the witness stand. Again and again, the prime minister was asked what he knew and when he knew it.

When was Harper informed of Nigel Wright's cheque to Duffy? demanded Mulcair. When did he first speak of the matter to Wright? What directives did he give to Wright? And why did it take days for the prime minister to move from complete support of Wright to accepting his resignation?

Tom Mulcair was magnificent, hammering Harper with one quick question after the other so he didn't have a chance to gather his thoughts, or parrot the party line.

Justin Trudeau also asked some good questions:

Given that the news of Wright's involvement was reported on May 14 on CTV News, the night before Harper says he found out about it, Trudeau asked, "Is the prime minister so unaware of what's going on in his own office that he didn't know about it the night before, when the news broke?"

And the way they both pounded Harper left him looking like a palooka on the ropes, or a man trying to hide something...

The worried looks on the faces of his caucus told the story. If the Con sheep were depressed before, now they must be DESPERATE.

You can watch the tape of what happened in the CBC story, or read Aaron Wherry's excellent account here.

But what I take from today's episode of Question Period is this: Harper had a chance to come clean, he didn't. He's still trying to pretend that a control freak like himself didn't know what was going on in his own office. He's still concealing documents. And he doesn't want a public inquiry. So now it's officially a cover-up.

And what I enjoyed the most was seeing that long before today's Question Period was over, the bully Harper was so battered and bruised he couldn't even get out of his seat...

He just slumped there looking beaten and humiliated, and let his faithful seal James Moore take the rest of the questions. And in the process make the Cons look even more RIDICULOUS.

“Mr. Speaker, we certainly agree that Canadians expect and deserve accountability. That is why the Prime Minister, both in his entire term as prime minister and again here today, has shown accountability and leadership that Canadians have come to expect,” Mr. Moore proclaimed, pointing with both index fingers. “The Leader of the Opposition asked questions. The Prime Minister has answered.”


For surely they know, like Harper almost certainly knows now, that this scandal has the potential to destroy them all. Damage the Con brand beyond repair. Demolish what's left of Harper's credibility. Smear him like he would smear his enemies.

How ironic eh? And how fitting. What a way to go. Tripped up by his Big Lies. Basted by his own sleaze. Skewered by his own Turkey Senate.

Or roasted like a Duffy...

Oh sure, Boss Harper isn't beaten yet. He will do ANYTHING to cling to power and try to mutilate Canada beyond recognition. But the stench of this scandal will taint everything he does, and follow him all the way to the next election.

We'll make sure of that. And his days are finally numbered.

Lordy. I don't know if I can handle all this good news. Not after so much bad news. Not when I live in Harperland where hope goes to die.  

But you know what? Tonight it was really wet and cold and foggy where I live. Definitely not a night to be waiting for the ferry to pick me up and take me home...

But I didn't really mind the rain in my face tonight, because after all that's been happening recently, it only reminded me that just like the rain we are going to make this country clean again in the next election.

Wash Harper and his Cons into the gutter where they belong, and back to the sewer they came from.

Even if after so long, I still can't quite believe it eh?

Our ship is coming in at last. The death-like fog of Harperland is slowly lifting. The truth will set us free. 

And brighter days are coming...

Click here to recommend this post at Progressive Bloggers.


e.a.f. said...

Watched C.B.C show the clips of Mulcair asking the questions! Finally he is doing what he is supposed to do. The opposition has stopped making speaches in question period and is asking questions. You have to go back to the days of Broadbent to see question periods like this. If the opposition parties had conducted question period like this, we might not have been in this mess. yes, the cons have done something terrible. The opposition parties over the yrs also spent too much time grandstanding in Parliament and not doing their jobs. Watching question period was like watching a bunch of speaches, with a small, frequently dumb question at the end.

If Mulcair keeps up today's preformance there maybe hope for this country.

The opposition now needs to keep up the pressure on the cons. Don't let them get away with their dumb answers.

the salamander said...

.. I saw the bizarre spectakle of elected childish federal MP's klapping like trained seals after every evasive response and following every unresponsive evasion by Mr. Harper. Heads nodding and bobbing, grunting and bellowing their approval..

The arkane performances & rhetorical buffoonery suits these suits stuffed with empty promises, their addled heads and missing in action ethiks and morality. What kountry do these konservative apparatchiks come from ? Konada ?

At least we were spared the nonsenikal spectakle, endlessly repeated, of Harper, Van Loan, Klement, Baird, Poilievre Flaherty et al, spouting their favorite whine about the NDP job killing karbon tax.

The Harper kaucass answers to nobody, much less in the House of Kommons .. They're a kollektive of smarm, dogma, manipulation, evasion and obstruktion. Of what possible use to Canadians, would 'answers' to their actions and behavior be .. when the pillars of their politicks and their beliefs are founded on attacking our environment, our democracy, our elections, our laws & legislations.

This tawdry kollection of smarty pants all dressed up in suits has an awful lotr to answer for. They kan start by kutting out the klap klap klap routine .. Only idiots laugh and klap at inkomprehensible nonsense and partisan politikal pantomine.

The 'K's used in my words (instead of 'C') are my idea.. to try to separate and define this disgusting group ..
this I see them as The Konseratives under The Harper Brand, The Harper Party etc ..
and they country they recognize is Konada ...

Keep up your fine fine work Simon

bcwaterboy said...

Mulcair has finally, finally set the tone of question period and each and every motion the harper goon squad makes, must be met with this type of questioning. It is clearly the only way to get inside a bully and bring him down, and bring him down he did. Even that little pipsqueak weasel Cannon to the left of harper, whom I see wandering through the mall at my workplace, brainwashing his "base" also looks a tad humbled. About friggin time and without a doubt, the best question period in years.

Omar said...

I do not believe for a moment Stephen Harper will ever be charged with any wrong doing, but I do believe his getting caught-up in Senate shenanigans of his own making signals the end of his leadership of the Conservative Party. He will not lead the party in 2015. That's all but guaranteed.

Rene said...

The major line of attack of Conservatives commenting on the parliamentary exchange on Yahoo Canada is to accuse Mulcair of "treason" and of being a silent witness to corruption in Quebec politics.

To which I responded :

" As to charges of "treason", Conservatives should look to their own, such as Arthur Porter, handpicked by Harper as watchdog of Canada's spy agency, who not only defrauds his employer of $ 22.5 million and flees to Panama, but was in cahoots with SNC-Lavalin running a counter-intelligence spy operation in support of Gaddafi, up to their neck in all sorts of political intrigue on Gaddafi's behalf, seeking to smuggle the Gaddafi clan into Mexico or Canada at the same time Harper's Conservative government is actively supporting a war against the Gaddafi clan. Not only was Porter not overseeing the activities of the CSIS, he was aiding and abetting a rogue rival international operation undermining CSIS's work."

The National Post reported in February 2012:

'A pair of SNC-Lavalin executives who had been linked to Colonel Muammar Gaddafi’s son, Saadi Gaddafi, have lost their jobs, the Montreal-based engineering and construction firm announced Thursday night.'

'In a brief news release, SNC-Lavalin said Riadh Ben Aissa, a Tunisian-Canadian who served as executive vice-president, and his accountant, Stephane Roy, were no longer employed by the company.'"

" SNC-Lavalin, like Harper, knows when it's time to dump their operatives to ward off further RCMP pursuit. Conservatives may wish to take note, since CSIS is constantly on the lookout for such suspect individuals and Conservatives are constantly on CSIS's case for not doing its job, that Porter's active co-conspirator in such operation was one Riadh Ben Aissa, former executive vice-president of SNC-Lavalin, who fled with his share of the loot to Switzerland."

" According to CBC news April 2012:

'The former head of construction for Canadian engineering firm SNC-Lavalin has been arrested in Switzerland, where he is being held on accusations of corrupting a public official, fraud and money laundering tied to his dealings in North Africa.'"

It is curious to note that Conservatives, always eager to raise a hue and cry and rally a lynch mob every time some Tunisian-Canadian makes the news charged with some crime, are curiously silent as to the misdeeds of this individual.

Anonymous said...

The other thing that really angered me was. Harper did everything possible, to stonewall and block the investigation of Harper's robo-call fraud. Mayrand said, Elections Canada did not co-operate, what-so-ever. Of course we all know, Harper installed one of his own in Elections Canada too.

The senate also said, the RCMP must not be impeded in any way. Seems the senate realizes, the RCMP are controlled by Harper and Toews.

The fact that Duffy filed expenses while at his cottage in PEI, filed expenses while campaigning? I would say, Harper is in a lot of doo-doo. I am beginning to believe Duffy does know, where the bodies are buried. Especially since, the order from the PMO office said, to say nothing about this swindle, what-so-ever.

No-one can convince me, Wright with two law degree's, didn't know what he was doing was illegal. Duffy has been around far too long, not to know better as well.

We should half expect, Parliament to be prorogued.

wazz said...

Today on the Honeymooners the Cons tried to pin some scandal on Mulcair from years ago first in their bogus pre-QP 'statements' and then later Harper himself kept reiterating this absurd nonsense. The Cons can use Mulcair to deflect, distract and lie to cover up their lack of accountability and transparency all they want I guess, but it won't work. Mulcair is not corrupt. He assisted the authorities when he knew he could be helpful. He was not charged with any wrongdoing. How sad it is that the House of Commons should be reduced to, and indeed a Canadian PM sould have to be questioned in a prosecutorial style just to assign simple days, dates and times to the public record. Harper is a complete fucking disgrace, and never did explain how his voice mentioning an 'offer' to the widow of Chuck Cadman somehow came to be. Instead he launched a lawsuit to keep that tape out of the press and out of the election campaign and pushed the lie publically his voice was on the tape trying to swindle Cadman because it was 'doctored.' After the election, the tape was confirmed as having not in any way 'doctored' and the Harper 'lawsuit' folded like a cheap tent. Karma is a bitch ain't it? And now, Harper knows that he is in trouble. A lawyer grilling a mail room clerk. Where is the cheque? Bank records would also be very illuminating. Did somebody make a large deposit into Wright's account before giving Duffy the big 'gift'?

Some Old Guy said...

Good comments, all. Much more on Arthur Porter here:

Meet Arthur T. Porter, the man at the centre of one of Canada's biggest health-care scandals.

Simon said...

hi e.a.f...Mulcair has always been a strong parliamentary performer. I remember seeing him in the Quebec National Assembly doing a similar job on the PQ. And he was at his Perry Mason best yesterday. Unfortunately the MSM rarely shows him grilling Harper, the Cons turn every exchange into a farce, and so few people watch Question Period because the coverage is so poor, that much of what Mulcair does there is lost. We really need more reports on what the Cons have done to Parliament to wake Canadians up...

Simon said...

hi salamander...thank you, I will try to keep writing. If only for this:

I saw the bizarre spectakle of elected childish federal MP's klapping like trained seals after every evasive response and following every unresponsive evasion by Mr. Harper. Heads nodding and bobbing, grunting and bellowing their approval..

For whenever I see the Con sheep giving their monkey leader a standing ovation it makes me want to vomit. It's like a competition to see who can clap the hardest to impress Harper the most. They practically throw themselves at him, and start hollering in tongues.

On the other hand, I'm glad I'm forced to watch that fascist circus on a regular basis, so I won't forget it ever. Forget that if a maniac led us to catastrophe, he had a lot of collaborators. The ones who never dared to challenge him, and behaved like shameless stooges, while our country was being vandalized.

I've got to live with them for now, but they will have to live with that one FOREVER...

Simon said...

hi bcwaterboy... yes it was quite a performance. And keeping the questions short so Harper had to go up and down like a ducky in a fairground shooting gallery was also brilliant. Great Leader must have lost at least two pounds. But Harper will react as he always does when he is threatened. He will turn every answer into an attack on the opposition. So this show is going to get really ugly...

Simon said...

hi Omar...Well look, I admit that the idea of Harper being charged and jailed is my fondest DREAM. But there are a number of ghosts running around out there that could come back to haunt him. And at the very least make him LOOK like a criminal. But yes, if he can't put this scandal out, it will be interesting to see how the Con sheep greet him at their National Convention this summer. Will they be baaaing, will they be angry, do sheep have teeth? Because if they can be soothed, it will soon be too late to replace Harper before the next election. There is no caucus successor, whatever Jason Kenney might think, and the party is too fragmented to risk something like that. So you see they will stick with Harper, unless he's arrested... ;)

Simon said...

hi Rene...yes the Cons will try to use the Vaillancourt incident to try to smear Mulcair, or make it look as if he's as corrupt as they are. Even though Mulcair didn't take the envelope which the Laval Mayor was waving in the air, he didn't know what was in it, and was an ordinary citizen who hadn't yet been elected. But when they attack you have to fight back, so it will be interesting to see what happens. Especially since it will also help progressives decide who is best suited to take on Harper. Mulcair or Trudeau?

Simon said...

hi anonymous...there is talk in Ottawa of Harper proroguing Parliament, shuffling his cabinet, and returning with a "new face" in the fall. It would only make him look worse, at least in the short run, but he's desperate so he's capable of anything. Let us put our faith in the media and the police, and hope it's a hot summer...