Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Things aren't much better in Canada

Brenda Martin shouldn't be so anxious to get back here. In the court of political and media rhetoric, Canada isn't far behind Mexico in the concept of guilty until proven innocent.

The headlines from yesterday's story have run the gamut from RCMP called in to help search Tory offices, all the way to RCMP raids Tory office in election probe.

Never mind that the RCMP clarified the situation as follows (RCMP raid a 'PR stunt', Tories claim):

...RCMP commissioner Bill Elliott said the RCMP has a "longstanding memorandum of understanding" to assist Elections Canada, and insisted his officers were simply complying with a request...

Whatever that means. However, it wasn't a 'raid' by the RCMP. But as noted in the previous post, the hyperbole and torqued headlines are spinning around the world.

The political rhetoric is also astounding. From the Liberal website:
The RCMP raid of Conservative Party headquarters is proof that Prime Minister Stephen Harper must explain to Canadians about his party’s alleged involvement in deceptive financing practices during the 2006 federal election, the Liberal Opposition said today.

Aha. They learned from the last time and added the word 'alleged'. But if this was only some assistance that the RCMP was providing to their old buddies, Elections Canada, then the preceding paragraph seems a bit contrived, n'est-pas?

And Michael Ignatieff self-righteously proclaims:

“How did it get to this? An RCMP squad raiding the offices of the Conservative Party - spinners in frantic damage control,” said Mr. Ignatieff. “I mean, how did we get here? Why did Elections Canada have to get a search warrant and the help of the RCMP in the first place? Why did they have to pry information from this government's clenched fist?”

Mmmm.... How did it get to this, Michael?

Do you think those camera-toting colleagues of yours who were descending like hungry vultures and greedily snapping photos for future ads have any idea either?

Anyway, don't rush back, Brenda. It isn't a whole lot better here either.

* * * *
Update: Via Steve Janke, Adam Radwanski weighs in with "Subtle as a Sledgehammer".

Cherniak - In and Out of the printing press. In his dreams.

I left a comment. Wonder if he'll publish it.

Tories say Liberals were tipped to raid - Star:

...A videographer hired by the Liberals was present as the raid was carried out...

But CBC's Newman said just before QP today, that they must have seen it on the news, and decided to drop by? C'mon.

* * * *
Update: Don Martin - Elections Canada brings out the sledgehammer:

...with footage in the can and a campaign script that writes itself, this is no longer an issue of guilt or Conservative innocence in the showdown with election officials.

That's the beauty of securing a conviction in the court of public opinion -- optics, hearsay and circumstantial evidence can instantly gas chamber the innocent with no avenue of appeal.

And on this particular count, shots of warrant-bearing cops wandering the headquarters of the allegedly clean Conservatives are Tory tarnish and Grit gold.

This is why I find Election Canada's behaviour somewhat squeamish. Nobody can recall such heavy handed behaviour before and there's no explanation why police were required when a phone call might have sufficed.

The Conservatives insist they'll have their day in court and argue convincingly that Elections Canada will be proven wrong. There's documentation suggesting the other three parties are not without sin at the ins and outs of creative campaign financing...


Alberta Girl said...

Sheesh - over at that CBC link, the commenters are going nuts - makes you realize how those who actually pay any attention to CBC are rabid Harper haters.

I can picture all the vultures just salivating for the goodies the "raid" turned up.

Roy Eappen said...

Who told the press and the grits? Can we no longer count on an unbiased elections Canada?

Alberta Girl said...

And Joanne, you have to wonder who sent out the news to those other agencies around the world???

Hmmmmmm.....CBC, CTV, The Star????...

Gabby in QC said...

The saddest aspect of this entire farce is that many people who don't bother to get all the facts will probably believe the PR stunt = a raid, just as they believe Brenda Martin's crying jags.

Anonymous said...

on this one I'm willing to give the Liberals a pass
I don't think they have completly lost their minds

NDP not so much
they caused the Liberals

Goodale grief over a supposed leak on Income Trusts

they destroyed the reputation of a prominent Liberal candidate in BC
Paul Martin was forced to distance the party from him as it was just before the election

Jack layton's response I've apoligized what more do you expect?

I expect the NDP to clean up their act

this last act is not comprehesible

are the members of theConservative party criminals?

if the answer is NO

why are they being treated as criminals?

Johnathon said...

The Liberals are a bunch of no good junkies.

No policies, no nothing.

Just a bunch of power hungry stooges who want to return to power to rip off the Canadian public.

The Liberal party of Canada is a bunch of idiots who have no brains.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

The Liberal party of Canada is a bunch of idiots who have no brains.

I don't agree with that. They have the odd one that can think for themselves. Dr. Keith Martin comes to mind. There must be one or two others...

maryT said...

Sure glad the Pope in in the USA, with great coverage. Gives me something to watch and an excuse to stay away from cbc and ctv.

Anonymous said...

"Goodale grief over a supposed leak on Income Trusts"

Sorry at least one person was found guilty of leaking news on the Income Trusts and Goodale did not tell the truth when he said there was no leak.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Can we no longer count on an unbiased elections Canada?

Could we ever?

Anna Keightley said...

The Liberals achieved the PR stunt in so far as they drove up a print media HEADLINE for street value. To credit CBC however, on broadcast news it was reported that Elections Canada fully expects to lose the Tory initiated lawsuit. The Conservative gov't has announced that all discovery documents have been released to Elections Canada. But the smear headline no doubt has sent the message to average Canadians not paying attention. This is the express time for Ottawa communications to repeat PMSH and Van Loan's clarification on national broadcast. Very glad CBC announced that Conservative gov't is expected to win the lawsuit.

Kingston said...


Ref: To credit CBC however, on broadcast news it was reported that Elections Canada fully expects to lose the Tory initiated lawsuit.

Do you have a link

Rositta said...

I just saw Brenda Martin on CBC with Harry Foresell, complete interview on the National tonight. Should have seen her lips quiver and the little sobs when she said she just wanted to see her mother, barf...ciao