As I was contemplating the reasons for this apparent discrepancy, I came across some insightful articles in National Newswatch under "Featured Links".
Don Martin's column "Liberals Confounded by One-Candle Harper" is particularly intriguing. Martin, on route back from Nairobi, was surprised to come across a flattering article about Stephen Harper in the 'Americas' section of The Economist.
As Martin says, "what The Economist peddles as perception counts more on the world stage than a dozen photo-ops at world leader gabfests."
But this is the point to ponder:
But what makes the magazine's mostly fawning assessment of the fledgling government so interesting is how this international swoon is but a yawn in Canada, where the support Mr. Harper needs to grow into a majority government remains elusive.
I might add, never mind 'grow into a majority'. We're talking survival here right now. But after reading Martin's piece, the thought that came to mind was how we in Canada so often fail to recognize talent in our own country. Why do we need the international community to remind us of our own treasures? The Leger Poll does seem to indicate a rising awareness of Harper's ability to make us proud on the world stage, but for some reason that does not translate into more favourable polling for the party itself.
Part of the problem may be beyond Harper's control as pointed out by Bruce Anderson of Decima Research. He "found that NDP support has been bleeding to the Liberals and the Green party in four vote-rich regions of the province." Source: CTV - Polls suggest Canadians kicking parties' tires.
(Private aside to all Blogging Tories - The following is for your eyes only: Do NOT under ANY CIRCUMSTANCES dis JACK!!)
Well I could go on with my analysis but my carpal tunnel is acting up again, which may require a temporary break from blogging.
I'll leave you with this awesome quote from James Travers, who usually leans left, but not today (Election about Nothing is a Bonus for Harper):
To indulgently return to a self-pleasing metaphor, environmental credibility is the little black dress of new age politics. It's the must-have item in every wardrobe, even if begged, borrowed or stolen. So it's no surprise that the Prime Minister is reaching into the Liberal cupboard. After all, in politics imitation isn't just sincere flattery, it's a winning tactic.
Isn't that a beaut? The little black dress of new age politics. Brilliant, James!
O.K. I'm going for the ice now. Try not to miss me too much.
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Oops! Almost forgot. Quite a good report card from the National Post regarding the Harper Government's first year. Although the odd misstep was mentioned, the Post finished up on this positive note:
On balance, though, the Conservatives' first year has a been a tremendous success. It is hard to see how a minority government, especially one with a hostile opposition and press corps, could have done more.
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Friday Update: Very insightful column by the brilliant Chantel Hebert in today's Star - Cooler Heads Might Delay Election Until Fall.
Stéphane Dion may not be aware of it but every time he accuses the Conservatives of stealing a page from his policy book on the environment, he is validating the reality of their makeover as a more environment-friendly government.