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Sunday, August 09 2020 @ 08:15 MDT

Hypocrisy thy name is Conservative

Canadian PoliticsSo Stephen Harper and his merry band of Tories are beginning to show their true colours. A party that railed against patronage and cronyism when in opposition is now heading right down that road now that they're in government.

I speak of course of the recent attempt to appoint Gwyn Morgan to the new Public Appointment Commission. The irony of a patronage appointment to a commission to oversee patronage appointments apparently escapes them. The next question you may have, of course, is that how could this be a patronage appointment if a parliamentary committee rejected the nomination? Well look at the following.

It was reported on the World at Six that after the rejection of Mr. Morgan, the Prime Minister went on to eliminate the entire commission. This gives the impression that the job was made just for Mr. Morgan. Further comments on the radio from people like Jason Kenny on the Homestretch that they would just find another job for Morgan to do imply that a political debt is being payed.

If Harper and Co. truly wanted this change, they could have found someone more palatable to the committee. As it was, Mr. Morgan had made some remarks in a speech to the Fraser Institute that could and were construed as him being a bit closed minded. This, of course had the opposition up in arms and they voted him down. This then ended up with Harper removing Morgan from the chair of the Commission, then dissolving the Commission before it even started. Not the actions of someone who truly wanted change in the appointment process.

I suspect Harper's true intent was to stack this commission with party hacks who would then vet out any non-Conservatives from the appointment process. This would allow Harper to appoint all the Tories he wanted to, and some unelected commission would rubber stamp the appointment. In this sense Harper's trying to run the Federal Government the way that King Ralph runs the Alberta government, secretively with a patina of openness that allows deflection of criticism. So much for more accountability

As a side note, another Calgary businessman was being interviewed on the Calgary Eyeopener about this topic this morning. What stuck out for me was the apparent naiveté of the businessman about politics. He was complaining that Ottawa was too political. Well, duh. Government in a democracy is all about politics. That's how agreement is reached. This businessman's opinion seems to support the thesis that Alberta conservatives and Conservatives truly don't understand politics beyond some superficial level. It also implies that they don't see politics and democracy as the art of compromise. That is the truly scary aspect of this.

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