Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Steve's Cannon Fodder

For those following the Helena Guergis fiasco and are not yet convinced this was a put up job by the PMO, I give you "Exhibit A". John Ivison yesterday, writing on another Tory fiasco, the Gary Lunn/Linda Keen contretemps.
The Minister of Natural Resources hasn't been seen in public since before Christmas, except by one alert letter-to-the-editor writer who spotted him in a Canadian Tire store in Vancouver.

No wonder he's made himself scarce. Who'd want to be hauled in front of a parliamentary committee and asked awkward questions such as: "Minister, did you really write that letter to nuclear regulator Linda Keen asking her to give one good reason why she shouldn't be fired, or was it penned by someone in the Prime Minister's Office, who told you to sign your name to it on pain of political death?"

We are reliably informed that's what happened. Mr. Lunn has been widely condemned for making Ms. Keen, president of the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission, the scapegoat in this whole affair. But it's possible that the Minister is the fall guy for a caper dreamt up in the Prime Minister's Office.
This is the way this government works. The PMO comes up with a "brilliant" strategy, writes it out and then shoves a hapless Minister out on stage to deliver pre-scripted attacks on the enemy of the day. Then when things go south, the PMO hides in its bunker while the Minister (Lunn one day, Guergis the next) gets grenades lobbed at them. Harper and the thugs who surround him see everyone in government, even his senior ministers, as expendable assets in their unending war on anyone who challenges the absolute authority of Stephen Harper.
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  1. Fester, you know what happens when you're off your meds. Where's Nurse Ratched?

  2. She is off today. Today is self-medication day! Woo hoo!

  3. Of course, as far as Harper's cabinet ministers are concerned, there's at least some quid pro quo involved: no matter how thoroughly they embarrass themselves Harper won't admit they've done anything wrong, and the worst they'll face is being shuffled to a less visible cabinet position. The same doesn't go for non-partisans who similarly get stuck doing Harper's dirty work.