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THE LORD OF THE DANCE: THE RETURN OF GOOD OL’ DUFF

One of the weaknesses of our age is our apparent inability to distinguish our needs from our greeds. – Don Robinson

Frank Pelaschuk

SKIM THE POT

It’s probably been like this forever, folks turning a blind eye or exchanging knowing winks and nods as others, politicians and senators, their wealthy corporate friends milk the system. Occasionally, when the offence is particularly egregious, a politician charging the public purse for the cost of his family’s vacation, flight and accommodations in some exotic isle or when a lowly gnat is reported abusing EI, the public will stir and buzz angrily. It’s from the big milkers, the politicians and senators, their wealthy corporate friends and supporters milking the system from whom we will always hear loud cries of outrage about the occasional small time gnat abusing welfare with demands for tighter controls against fraudsters including stiffer fines with jail time. The public, as it always does, will buzz “amen” to that. It’s diversion, of course. It’s never the politicians and senators, their wealthy corporate friends and supporters who are ripping off the system just ask them and they’ll tell you loudly and clearly that the problem lies with the lazy gnat taking tax dollars from the mouths of babes so that he (or she) can sit in the bar and mockingly declare “Is Canada a great country or what!”

Now, of course, I have no use for the rip-off artist whether rich or poor. A thief is a thief. But, if I had my druthers, I would rather pursue the big thief, the tax cheats, the corporate welfare bums, the politicians and senators, their wealthy corporate friends and supporters than the poor welfare cheat because I know that the welfare cheat, even if he may really be in desperate need, stands a greater chance of punishment and jail time than the wealthy or than do those who sit in high office passing laws that allows them to legally pick our public purses with fake “expense” claims while, at the same time, scapegoating and punishing those less fortunate. I could be wrong, but I suspect the laws are tipped towards the health and well being of those that have rather than those that don’t. In fact, I suspect there is a law that demands that this be so. If not, why do we, and by we I mean you and I, keep on tolerating these abuses from those full time abusers, those politicians and senators, their wealthy corporate friends and supporters?

Well, the answer could be we, the public, simply don’t know what to do. No, that’s not it.

Perhaps the answer is that we don’t care. Hmm, I think that’s getting close to the matter.

Or, it could be we are all stupid and don’t care. It’s easier to blame those whom we believe lesser than ourselves.

Now, I may stupid, but I do care. I care that politicians and senators can make and change rules as the mood suits them, make and change rules that allows them to do legally what most of us would consider improper, dishonest, crooked, questionable. Hell, we may even consider some of what politicians and senators, their wealthy corporate friends and supporters are allowed to do and do do unethical, shameful, and just plain wrong! Yet they keep on doing them again and again and nothing, absolutely nothing is ever done to bring it to an end.

Sometimes we even have a judge saying it’s okay, judgement is not required of you any more than personal integrity or responsibility because, without clear rules saying you can’t do something, then, by god, you can do it. The law says so. Shame isn’t a factor. Neither is personal responsibility. It doesn’t matter what the public may think: if there is no rule against you padding your expenses well, buddy, go for it.

MILKERS

Folks, there are those who will not take advantage of situations. These are people who do not need laws or rules or regulations to spell out what is right or wrong. They just know because they have their own moral compass and, because they do, they will never, regardless of how tempting, ever, ever, resort to legalese or the cheap cop out: the law says I can, therefore I will.

Unfortunately, there are also the toads. At times, particularly among politicians and senators, their wealthy corporate friends and supporters, the toads appear to outnumber the honest folk. They don’t, but they appear to. The thing is, toads do as they always do: they act as toads.

And the whole Canadian Senate, with one or two exceptions, is a house of toads. They, the Senator toads, have boasted of recent changes to the rules and regulations in the wake of the Mike Duffy trial which found him “Not Guilty” on all counts. Changes? Really? Well, one good Ol’ toad is back and he’s at it again. The flimflam has never ended; it just continues. Oh, yes, it’s all legal Duffy and the others milking the system will tell you, breathing a lot more easily and freely, because the court has shown the way to rip off the taxpayer without suffering any consequences. Don’t blame the actor, blame the script. It’s not Duffy’s fault, it’s the system! So, Duffy can legally claim the Ottawa home in which he has lived in for thirty plus years as a living expense. His real home, not the home in which he has lived full time in Ottawa for thirty plus years, is evidently in PEI. It’s all above board, all hunky-dory, because, unlike a time long, long ago (okay, not that long ago), he now has a health card, a driver’s licence and a tax assessment saying he is a resident of PEI. It’s all legit even if a sham and a scam. Is Canada a great country or what! The rules were unclear (even to that long-time parliamentary hack, good Ol’ Duff); Duffy is not personally responsible for the “mistakes”. Well, he did try, let’s be fair. He questioned Harper (by his accounting) whether he could really claim to be from PEI when he lived to all intents and purposes in Ottawa. Harper assured him that he could. One would think that a veteran journalist would have dug a little deeper just to make certain. One fact is clear: he did lie about who paid his $90 thousand debt for false expense claims.

So, Duffy, cleared to do so, is at it again, claiming his Ottawa home of thirty plus years for his living expenses. He’s allowed. The rules say so.

But is it ethical? Is it decent? Is this right?

Not by a long shot. It’s simply legal. Duffy is doing what all toads do; he’s resorting to legalese. For toads, optics, ethics, sense of shame, decency, play little to no role. It’s what one can get away with, that matters. Personal responsibility has nothing to do with how a politician or a senator lives if that politician or senator has the soul of a toad. It’s legalese. It’s all about the main chance. Get it while you can and as much as you can.

Years ago, David Dingwall, while appearing before a committee investigating his expense claims and his severance package after resigning from his position at the Royal Canadian mint, infamously declared, “I’m entitled to my entitlements”. It is the mantra by which all politicians and senators apparently live, none more so zealously than the good Ol’ Duff whom everyone knows is an honest man. He told us so and the court seems to agree.

Ol’ Duff and those of his ilk, politicians and senators, their wealthy corporate friends and supporters, will always be toads and continue to do as toads do.

Personally, if the Senate cannot be abolished, I would simply be content to have all toads croak.

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But such is the irresistible nature of truth, that all it asks and all it wants, is the liberty of appearing. – Thomas Paine.

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They that can give up essential liberties to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety. Benjamin Franklin

HARPER ON WALLIN: “I HAVE LOOKED AT THE NUMBERS”

MARJORY LEBRETON AND THE ART OF CONSERVATIVE HYPOCRISY

With the release of the Pamela Wallin audit, Conservative Senator Marjory LeBreton, was immediately out there, not for the first time, front and centre releasing a statement that fairly bellowed with faux indignation, a showy display of outrage and near rapturous sanctimony. Aaron Wherry, (MacLean’s, Aug. 12, 2013) quotes:

“Our government will not tolerate the waste or abuse of the hard-earned tax dollars of Canadians. We expect that any inappropriate expenses will be repaid. Senator Wallin is no longer a member of the Caucus and must be held accountable for her actions.”

“These issues are coming to light because of actions we took to publicly release Senators’ expenses when we gained a majority in the Senate in 2010. We have subsequently taken steps to toughen rules governing Senate expenses.”

“Our Government will continue to advocate for meaningful reform of the Senate – including elections, term limits and tough spending oversight. Canadians understand that our Senate, as it stands today, must either change, or like the old Upper Houses of our provinces, vanish.”

LeBreton, like Stephen Harper and the rest of the Conservative ideologues, is not shy in cutting her loses and throwing another of a long list under the proverbial bus. Nor is she shy in claiming, on behalf of her party, the mantle of righteousness taking credit for the exposure of the rot infecting the Senate. It doesn’t faze her that this is at odds with the facts; for Conservatives history is meaningless unless it can be distorted to suit their story. In that respect, she is an ideal Tory and is fully cognizant of the value of the revisionism to which Conservatives are not loath to indulge. That what she claims is absolute rubbish is of no consequence. Repeat the lie often enough, those docile voting sheep out there will eventually fall in line perhaps with the need of a little sweetener thrown in, another tax cut, or better yet, a promise of greater things (never mind what) coming down the pike. However, while they may have you accurately pegged, before you swallow that drink she’s offering, if you haven’t keeled over from laughing, you might want to have it analysed. You never know what those Conservatives will serve you but it’s seldom the truth and often unpleasant, an amalgam of wishful thinking, half-truths, outright lies and fairy dust, an imagining of the world not as it is, but as they would have you believe.

The Senate revelations came about not by dint of Conservative or Liberal efforts. In fact, Conservative senators released a doctored audit report for public consumption and the PMO denied all knowledge of the cheque Nigel Wright wrote to pay off Mike Duffy’s debt. They were underplaying and underselling the whole debacle. The thing is, four senators, three of them Conservatives, got caught with their hands in the cookie jar! Yet, to the worthy LeBreton, Harper and the Conservative are heroes! As for those alleged fraudsters, well, they should be commended for returning their ill-gotten gains! Yeah, right. They did the honourable thing. You have to weep that politics has sunk so low into the swamp of self-enrichment rather than the welfare of the nation.

So we ask: How do you think the Conservatives would behave if Liberals alone had ripped off taxpayers? We’ve seen their reactions in the past: the outrage would be there, as would the accusations, slanders and distortions. And if it was just Joe Blow? Hell, jail wouldn’t be enough!

As an historian, LeBreton is as credible as any Conservative stooge in the same way Bernie Madoff was as financial handler reporting on how the funds of those he bilked were doing. Unreliable at best. Regardless of how LeBreton and other Conservatives spin it, and oh, how they are spinning it! those alleged fraudsters got caught and want us to believe that, because they got caught and are willing to return what they fraudulently claimed, that they are somehow blameless and honourable. In fact, by returning the money, it is as if they want us to believe no offence, no fraud, was committed! Rats, unless like these folks, who happen to walk on two feet, are more trustworthy. Conservatives have a penchant for revision (remember Penashue, “the greatest MP ever” from Labrador who resigned for illegally accepting corporate funds for his campaign?). LeBreton’s response to the release of Wallin’s audit is just another prime example of it. Of course, to call Conservatives up on any of this is likely to lead to labeling as Liberal media lickspittle by shrill LeBreton with muted “huzzahs” from Tories. Think it, believe it, but not say it too loudly.

PAMELA WALLIN, THE AUDIT AND THE EXCUSES

If Conservatives were slapped by integrity, ethics, truth, facts and shame, they would doubtless be confused if not utterly alarmed fearing they have been rendered impotent by invading foreign bodies.

Recently, there have been whispers that Harper and his gang may do more than move to reform the Senate. The may set out to abolish it, something the NDP has been demanding for years though Harper’s gang, as is typical of them, will claim it was their idea spinning some elaborate story as to why they are the only ones to work in the public interest. No doubt, some of the gullible public will gladly swallow the swill.

Wallin wants to stay in the senate. She wants to work for the public. She will pay back the more than $140K, with her own money, a clear barb meant for Harb and Duffy who did not. Nowhere does she admit guilt or accept responsibility. She made “mistakes”, the “system” is at fault, the Deloitte audit “report is the result of a fundamentally flawed and unfair process” (Joanna Smith, The Star, Aug. 12, 2013). She further states the expense forms are confusing. If so, then Wallin, clearly not unintelligent, would have turned to an accountant. One would think. As to being unfair, who the hell is the victim here if not taxpayers.

She also claims that changes made to the data on her calendar when she learned she was about to be audited were on the advice of David Tkachuk. Naturally Tkachuk, who along with Carolyn Stewart Olsen had whitewashed the Duffy audit for public consumption, denies this. But a question needs asking: Regardless of whose advice, if any, why alter data in your Microsoft Outlook calendar detailing your activities after the fact if you have done no wrong? Is Wallin that stupid or gullible? According to the audit report, Wallin made many expense claims related to purely partisan fundraising activities having nothing to do with Senate business. Wallin is the same senator Stephen Harper defended in The House when he stood up and claimed he saw her travel claims and found them comparable to those of others doing government business. Really? Perhaps it’s time auditors do a complete examination of all the books of senators and MPs. Hands up, those in favour.

No admission of wrongdoing from Wallin. Nor does she talk of resigning. Shame? Not a whit of it. These people believe they are above it; rules don’t apply to them, that’s for the little people; they are major players and are entitled to their entitlements and all the rewards that come their way and they will continue to nickel and dime Canadian taxpayers as is their divine right to do so. Do you like that? If so, how can you?

So, the next time you hear Harper and the rest of his lousy Conservative gang have a go at public servants, attack science and scientists, punish whistleblowers, seek new ways to destroy unionists and smear enemies, just remember what these people are and how they act and how they betrayed your trust. And remember in particular that, of the four senators investigated, three were Harper appointees. Nor should you forget that Harper not only did not reform the Senate as he promised, but he also turned it into rubberstamping machine for government policies with over half of those in the Senate Harper appointees. These are his people, his stooges, his greedy little soldiers. Abolishment, not reform is needed.

A QUESTION FOR YOU

If you don’t mind what has happened, if ethics, truth, integrity, principles, and honesty are of less importance than tax breaks for Big Business, then continue to support Harper and brag about doing so because you are among the shameless and should be known.

And every time Harper attempts to sell you something new and you feel tempted and about to weaken, when you hear Tony Clement attack public servants whom you envy and hate comparing many of them to dead wood, think of Clement’s $50 million slush fund and of the $3.1 billion mislaid while he was president of the Treasury Board. He’s still there. Then think of Bev Oda, her false expense claims, Peter Penashue, Mike Duffy, Patrick Brazeau, Pamela Wallin and Liberal Mac Harb.

Ask yourself: Do we need the Senate? And, while you’re thinking on this, ask yourself a more important question: Do you believe in the Democratic process? If so, ask another question: Do we really need or want more of Harper and his gang? If you think we do, I suggest you question your own ethics. Something’s missing.

STEPHEN HARPER, THE VINDICTIVE NEANDERTHAL

How many people eat, drink, and get married; buy, sell, and build; make contracts and attend to their fortune; have friends and enemies, pleasures and pains, are born, grow up, live and die ― but asleep! – Joseph Joubert

Frank A. Pelaschuk

STEPHEN HARPER SUFFERS A BLOW BY REASON

Occasionally, those in politics can surprise you in the most unexpected of ways: against all expectations and all hope, they do the right thing. When that happens, and it rarely does these days, one inhales deeply and wonders how, why, can it happen again, will it happen again.

June 26, 2013, was such a day. On that day, twenty-two Tory senators surprised the nation and clearly poked the malignant eye of Stephen Harper and his sorry crowd of scoundrels. Sixteen senators, led by Hugh Segal, voted with the Liberals to block the odious anti-union bill, Bill C-477, which had passed in the House last December and was now having it sent back. In abstaining, six Tories made the defeat a certainty. It was a stunning setback for Harper, a remarkable event especially from a legislative body that has, since Harper and thugs achieved their majority, routinely and with markedly little reflection, approved most, if not every, piece of Conservative legislation passed in the House, many as questionable and some as odious as C-377. Evidently, even for certain stalwarts who are unquestioningly loyal and partisan, there are just some things that are too much, too unreasonable, too patently unfair to be endured.

Whatever their motives (I do hope personal integrity and a desire for fairness played a bigger role than concern over the constitutionality of the legislation), C-377 was blocked and sent back with amendments. It was a good day for the Democracy. It was a good day for the Senate. And it was a good day for people who have found themselves vindicated in the Quixotic belief that people (politicians!), are capable of holding, and acting on, principles. More sceptical, I admit to being pleasantly surprised; when it comes to Conservatives, I always expect the worst and am seldom disappointed.

Undoubtedly, those opposing Tory senators considered the bill unfair and an invasion of privacy. They are right, but it is more. It is a mean-spirited unjust scapegoating attack against workers and to their right of association solely designed to satisfy Harper’s anti-union agenda of placating his corporate masters by making things as difficult and onerous on the union movement as possible. The bill is harassment pure and simple, crafted by Harper and his despicable group to force unions to publicly do what they already do for their members, which is to disclose the costs of all salaries, benefits and expenses of their employees, including those towards political and lobbying efforts. Taxpayers do not fund unions; they do not pay the salaries and benefits of union employees and, because they do not, are not entitled to have access to union books. C-377 says otherwise. Anyone with a sense of fair play, even if a modicum, would acknowledge this as heavy-handed and prejudicial legislation, a purely parochial attack against unions and unionized workers demanding of them what Conservatives do not demand of their corporate friends and other organizations.

Those twenty-two Tory senators must be commended for voting and abstaining as they did, whatever their motives. Defying Harper often results in brutal reprisal for offenders. That takes a certain amount of courage, for this is a regime of bullies and plain, old-fashioned thuggery. Bill C-377 is unambiguously unfair and discriminatory. But Harper’s Conservatives, as we well know, have never been about fairness any more than they have been about ethics and integrity; for this loathsome group, those concepts are for mugs.

Doubtless enraged, Harper and his gang immediately vowed to reintroduce the bill as is; no one is going to thwart them if they have their way. That attitude, petty, vindictive, and just plain malicious, is hardly surprising and totally in character for this group of amoral narcissists who actually act as if they have swallowed their own mythmaking bull. However, thanks to those Conservative senators, the public might get a second, clearer look at this foul bill and, perhaps, agree that Harper, this tin-pot tsar of mediocrity, had indeed, crossed the line, which he has – time and again.

While I will not hold my breath, I look forward to the day when those same members, perhaps joined by others in the governing majority, stand up again against all ensuing bad, punitive and unjust laws that these intellectual midgets are bound to craft. And if it happens a third time and a fourth and fifth, I might yet be convinced that some people, even politicians, are capable of doing the right thing for the right reasons. Until then, I will take this. It is more than I expected.

CONSERVATIVES, CORRUPTION, AMORALITY AND THE BIG FIX

A conservative government is an organized hypocrisy. – Benjamin Disraeli

The louder he talked of his honor, the faster we counted the spoons – Ralph Waldo Emerson

Frank A. Pelaschuk

NOT SO FAST MARJORY LEBRETON

Not all that long ago, (May 9th, 2013), with the recent release of the audit on the three senators who had made false housing and travel claims, Conservative Sen. Marjory LeBreton, Leader of the Government in the Senate, stated the matter was over as far as Mike Duffy was concerned. This declaration was made after the public had been informed that Mike Duffy had repaid $90 thousand dollars he had collected while not entitled to do so after making false claims. LeBreton also threatened Liberal Sen. Mac Harb and Sen. Patrick Brazeau, Stephen Harper appointee, now an Independent, with garnishment if they didn’t repay their false claims on time. Neither Harb nor Brazeau, it would appear, would be offered any leniency by the Conservative dominated senate. The difference between the three cases, as far as the public was led to believe was that one, Duffy, had “voluntarily” offered and made restitution to the tune of $90 thousand. However, with the latest revelations regarding Conservative Sen. Duffy, it is clear that LeBreton spoke far too soon.

When word came, with much fanfare, that Duffy had repaid the $90 thousand, Stephen Harper and the rest of the Conservative chorus began to sing his praises. Duffy, who had admitted to no wrongdoing, had done the right thing; he was honourable. So went the line. The way they sold it, it was unlikely there was a finer, more honest individual to be found anywhere across this great land. Well that sounded good, didn’t it? Of course, not everyone was buying it.

Some suggested it was time to call in the RCMP. Neither LeBreton nor Harper would have any of that. The matter was closed as far as they were concerned. For others, however, there was still that nagging question that needed a response: If guiltless, why would Duffy feel impelled to repay the housing claims to which he was entitled? The forms were confusing, he had claimed. He may have made a mistake. “But I would not knowingly fiddle,” he had said. He had also said, “Canadians know I am an honest person…”

The audit results suggest otherwise. And because they do, more than repayment is called for.

But Duffy’s refund was not the whole story, was it. Not by a long shot. For weeks the public had been led to believe that he had repaid the money out of his own funds, presumably the money he had illegally claimed as his entitlements. We now know that Duffy, forewarned by another senator, Conservative David Tkachuk, about what to expect, that the audit would, as it did, find that he had abused his office, could not afford to repay the money on time. Not to worry; he had a good friend in the PMO willing to help. The money was repaid. The name of the benefactor was Nigel Wright, Chief of Staff to Stephen Harper. But none of this was made public until May 15. Intriguingly, once the refund was made, good ol’ Duff no longer co-operated with those investigating him and LeBreton declared the matter closed.

Unfortunately, the narrative as the cretinous Duffy, Stephen Harper and the Harper gang may have sought isn’t as straightforward as they would have us believe. It was true; the government was repaid money Duffy had undeservedly claimed, but the repayment was not from Duffy’s wallet nor was it even with the taxpayers’ own money. Instead, the debt was paid with a “gift” from Nigel Wright, Harper’s right hand man. But none of this, as stated above, was made public by Duffy, Wright or anyone else who may have known. If the $90 thousand was a loan, Duffy and Wright had a duty to inform the auditors as well as the Leader of the Government of the Senate, LeBreton, and the Ethics Commissioner. But not a whisper for weeks until May 15th, when the story broke. Only then did Wright finally inform the Ethics Commissioner of the $90 thousand cheque. If, however, the $90 thousand was a “gift” rather than a loan from Nigel Wright to good ol’ Duff, then surely the rules were broken. As cited in the Globe and Mail (May 15th), “senators are prohibited from accepting gifts that could reasonably be seen to relate to their position.” No ambiguity there. Clearly the $90 thousand “gift” had everything to do with Duffy’s senate position, the anticipation of the audit outcome and the preserving of his position and whatever reputation he had left. Forewarned, the debt repaid, Duffy no doubt expected that that would be the end of the matter. With LeBreton’s help, that’s exactly what transpired. Now the public might be forgiven for shaking their heads with disappointment if not disbelief. The public might also be forgiven for wondering if these people have any clue as to how this looks, if they even care or if they experience any sense of shame. If Harper and gang have any inkling what ethics entails, they obviously are unfamiliar and indifferent to the practice of it and they certainly don’t care what you and I think. And they will continue to not care until you and I loudly scream: We are not going to take it any more!

THE CONSERVATIVE CONCEPT OF HONOUR

When the story broke out on May 15, something interesting but unsurprising began to take shape. The Harper regime went into full spin mode. On CBC’s Power and Politics that afternoon, Pierre Poilievre, that Conservative stooge who can always be relied upon to give the government spin on almost any story, kept insisting that Nigel Wright had “done the exceptionally honourable thing” for the taxpayers by paying off Duffy’s debt. Wow. Now that is spin. Wright had saved Duffy’s hide to spare you and me!

So, according to Poilievre, Wright is “exceptionally honourable”. But what is so honourable about this secret pact requiring negotiation between Wright, Duffy, the senate and, for all we know, Harper himself? What is so honourable about a deal bailing out a double-dipping senator who, once the debt was repaid, went mute, became uncooperative, and refused to share records with investigators, and was found to have deliberately made false claims to money that wasn’t his to take in the first place? To suggest, as Harper stooges have, that Wright’s act was pure selfless generosity, just an old friend helping out a pal and attempting to spare the Canadian taxpayers from the pain of the loss of the $90 thousand dollars illegally obtained by Duffy, the same honest Duffy who claimed expenses from the senate while campaigning for Harper and the Conservatives last election, rather than a measure to protect the senator, stretches all credulity. But that is precisely what Harper and his gang want us to believe. This was no attempt at a cover-up. No, indeed. Wright “had done the exceptionally honourable thing”. So said Poilievre. What is remarkable about that statement is that Poilievre and other Harper Conservative pinheads (Kellie Leitch, Michelle Rempel, Chris Alexander et al) had said almost exactly the same thing of Duffy when they went about attempting to convince us that it was Duffy who had paid off the debt he claims he did not owe! It’s remarkable how easily Harperites can shift. Pat phrases always helps; myth making bullshit for any and all occasions.

One could almost be excused for laughing except this is no laughing matter. In the past, Wright himself had been looked at and cleared for ethical breaches. But this $90 thousand gift from one so close to Harper’s office deserves full public scrutiny. Why the secrecy if there was nothing untoward? If this was simply a pal helping a pal, what was there to negotiate? Did Marjory LeBreton and others in the Senate know? If so, how much did they know and to what extent were they involved? Once the $90 thousand was paid, why did Duffy stop co-operating with the investigators, falling silent and refusing to hand over documents that could have cleared him if he is innocent of wrongdoing? Did Stephen Harper know of this gift? Did he play a role in any way? The PMO’s office says Harper knew nothing. With Harper’s well known penchant for control, is that even credible?

The day following the Wright revelations, the Ottawa Citizen ran the following headline: “PMO’s integrity thrown into question” (May 16). Now that is a howler. What integrity are they talking about? This is a government from day one that has demonstrated that it will exercise any excuse for any act, lie or deed committed by one of their members, cronies or friends. Time and again Harper and gang have demonstrated readiness, even eagerness, to point fingers, throw staffers and colleagues under buses, and smear those who dare question its style of governance. It’s even been cited for contempt of parliament. Ministers have been forced to resign for padding expense accounts and accepting illegal corporate donations while campaigning. The truth is, Harper and gang will take a line, any line, twist it, hammer it, chisel it, and hack it to pieces until it fits the filthy portal of lies they insist it must fit. This is a government so ethically challenged that even the staunchest of Conservative supporters are beginning to understand that the promise of an open, honest and transparent government offered by Harper has not only never flown, it has never even sprouted wings.

CONSERVATIVES AND THE ELUSIVE NATURE OF TRUTH

The nature of truth is irresistible. It cannot be stopped. But it can be delayed, interfered with, and denied for some time. Harper’s gang have been doing such for some time; they are well practiced in obfuscation, obstructionism and plain old-fashioned lying. Eventually, truth will out, but occasionally it needs a little help. The RCMP must be brought in.

Notwithstanding Harper’s support of Wright, itself a key insight into Harper’s dark nature, the deal between Wright, Duffy and the senate must be thoroughly investigated. Even if what transpired was legal, it certainly poses some ethical questions. That Harper cannot understand that or, based on his response to past issues, most likely doesn’t care, speaks volumes but should surprise no one. To this regime, ethics, integrity, honesty, truth, shame are just words and little more. Some people just don’t understand them and they never live by them. That so many in Harper’s circle including Harper himself could be devoid of the moral compass that guides most of us is shocking. These people are like zombies, devoid of the things that give a person value and meaning as a human being. They live in a vacuum in which anything goes and the only thing that offers them sustenance is not the doing of the right, just, honourable thing, but the main chance, i.e., what they can get from anything and anyone however and by whatever means. They are beyond redemption and contempt. Harb, Brazeau and perhaps all members of the senate and even parliament should be investigated as well with the books examined and the record set straight. If laws have been broken, charges must be laid. If found guilty, those senators and/or MPs must be booted out of office, they must lose their pensions and they must pay fines and serve time.

When that is done, the public should then turn its attention to the senate and drive a stake through its rotten, pustule plagued, useless, patronage burdened heart.

And then the public should turn its eyes on Stephen Harper and his gang of amoral thugs who can excuse and justify anything vile that suits their needs.

When will the anger turn to rage and the rage to a whirlwind?

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