Prime Minister Harper

CP

Watching the Watchdog: Politicians Refusing to Communicate

What we have here is a refusal to communicate. We have a prime minister who refuses to explain why three of his Conservative senators have been forced to resign from his party. When it comes to codes of silence, His Worship the oafish mayor of Toronto, Rob Ford, has learned a lot from the nation's chief magistrate.

Don't Ignore the Red Brigades!

The official report on yesterday's top-level meeting concerning treaties signed between the Crown and and First Nations has been released. The first matter before the meeting, according to the sources, was this week's decision by the United Nations to offer peacekeeping troops to help contain and put down the First Nations' uprising, known as the Red Brigades.
CP

Do Canadians Really Like Stephen Harper?

Last week marked the seven-year anniversary of the Conservative Party's minority government. Since Harper took office, only three countries that are part of the G-8 have not enacted a shift in their governing party at least once: Canada, Germany and Russia. Despite this longevity, Harper has not established a phenomenal connection with a majority of Canadian voters. In the annual Angus Reid Public Opinion poll that looks at past and present prime ministers, Harper was regarded as the worst one since 1968 by one-in-four Canadians. Still, the current Prime Minister has succeeded in creating a base of support, sustaining it, and growing it after every election.
CP

Media Bites: Marois and Quebec Got Hitched, For Richer, For Poorer

With Pauline Marois now officially inaugurated as the sixth separatist premier of everyone's favorite French-speaking province, you might reckon that our nation's gigantic, months-long Quebec politics bender would finally be coming to an end. Also, you might be an idiot. Speaking of not-so-smart ideas, Harper's plans to reform parliamentary pensions aren't going over so well in the media...
CP

Will the PQ Win Light a Fire Under Harper?

With Jean Charest's resignation as leader of the Quebec Liberal Party, any arrangement between the Liberals and François Legault's CAQ to form a government now appears highly unlikely. That means that the PQ is set to govern Quebec at least for the next several months. Paradoxically, the PQ's minority win gives Stephen Harper a small window to advance a new vision for Canadian federalism and therefore unite a polarized Confederation along the lines of a common direction.
CP

Hey Harper, Take the PQ Win as a Chance to Step it Up

The advent of a PQ government in Quebec is both a challenge and an opportunity for Canada. This is a time for renewed national leadership that reaches out to Canadians to offers an overarching vision for Canada in the 21st century -- one where a strong federal government works with the provinces. I look forward to working with Quebecers and all Canadians to build a 21st century Canada -- one Canada, for all Canadians.
CP

Harper's in Need of Some Real Northern Exposure

This month I visited the northernmost region in my riding, Nunavik, and met with people from all walks of life there. Trips like those give you a real reality check that some politicians go out of their way to avoid. Last week the Prime Minister had a chance to begin listening to the people of the North, but instead he stayed inside his bubble. Clearly, this is work that Conservatives cannot properly do.
FRED TANNEAU / AFP

What to Think About on Prisoner's Justice Day

August 10 is International Prisoner's Justice Day, which began in Canada 37 years ago. In 1974 a Canadian man, Edward Nalon, died in the segregation unit of an Ontario prison, resulting in a day of mourning for prisoners across the country. This is an important day to consider how we treat people behind bars, and to remember the goals of incarceration. It is also a day for us to ask many questions about our prison system as a whole, and to assess how some of the recent actions of the Canadian government may affect these conditions
CP

Are the War of 1812 Ads Really Appropriate?

I see the opposition parties have finally taken issue with the government for their heavy promotion of the War of 1812 during Olympic television coverage. The question is not the ad itself; the real issue is whether or not the Olympics are an appropriate venue for this type of saturation advertising? A simple ad highlighting the accomplishments of former Canadian Olympic greats would have been more appropriate.
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Media Bites: When it Comes to Politicians, How Religious is too Religious?

When it comes to politicians, how religious is too religious? Well, the religiosity of our prime minister was the talk of pundit-town this weekend. But I'd say around 97 per cent of us finished drawing conclusions about Harper's fundamental goodness/evil sometime around 2003. Forget outing himself as an evangelical, I'm not even sure a literal face-peeling robot reveal would move the polls much at this point.
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Of Course Harper Isn't Going to Meet the Premiers. Would You?

I see the premiers are upset that Prime Minister Harper will not be attending their next session on the economy in Halifax next November. We can almost certainly guarantee that if the Prime Minister went to the November meeting each and every premier would find plenty of opportunities to go in front of the media to castigate the Prime Minister on a long list of issues. In turn the Prime Minister would then be forced to respond to their attacks during his media availability. Certainly that is not the best way to have reasonable well-thought out discussions on the economy or on any other issue for that matter. Why should Harper risk it?

The Truth Is, Attawapiskat Was Never Financially Mismanaged

On August 1, the Federal Court released its judicial review of the appointment of a Third Party Manager in Attawapiskat. Over and over again, the Federal Court states that financial mismanagement was not the issue, and never had been. The fact that the public dialogue about Attawapiskat was almost wholly concerned with allegations of such mismanagement, demonstrates just how intensely events can become hijacked by misunderstandings.

Crime Doesn't Deter Tories -- Nor do Facts

In a statement Wednesday, Vic Toews said the Omnibus crime bill had not led to the predicted rise in prisoners and prison costs. Either the Public Safety Minister is being intentionally deceptive, or he lacks a basic understanding of how the court system works. I'm not sure which one is more disturbing.

Does Harper Love the Queen More Than His Country?

Why does Stephen Harper have such a sudden attachment to the Queen that he neglected to celebrate the 30th anniversary of our Charter of Rights and Freedoms? Does he despise so much our Constitution and the law generally? Was it to please Ontarians and gain seats in Ontario? Or is it just pure opportunism and hypocrisy?

Mulcair Will Usurp Harper...If the Attack Ads Don't Get Him First

The polls have spoken -- Stephen Harper is unpopular, and will surely be replaced in no time. But by whom? Thankfully the pundit brigade have lots of fun ideas -- Spoiler Alert: Probably Mulcair. That is, if the Tories' new attack ads against him don't get in the way. Although these televised attacks are a little lacklustre compared to the Conservatives' greatest hits.
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Can Liberals Replace the Bleeding Red Tories?

On the national scene, the Red Tory is a dying breed. The decline of the Liberal Party of Canada in effect represents the downfall of the final remnant of interest-based politics, a type of politics in which elected officials attempt to bridge, rather than emphasize, the inherent gaps and differences present among the Canadian people.
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Smile Like You Mean it, Prime Minister

When Prime Minister Harper issued the apology for residential schools, he promised to forge a new relationship with Aboriginal Canadians. Well, we have our apology and the new relationship that was promised has yet to appear. In fact, the Conservatives have drastically cut Aboriginal health and food programs while knowing full well that Aboriginal people across Canada are struggling with these issues.
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Harper and the Environment are Like Oil and Water

The Harper government is waging war on Canada's fresh water. Industry will now have unprecedented influence over water protection policy and the Harper cabinet will make decisions about which watersheds deserve protection based on political, not scientific, grounds. What a travesty Harper has decided to sacrifice our freshwater heritage in order to please his industry friends.