Monday, April 28, 2008

The Anatomy of Arrogance

If one thing has become crystal clear, it is that the CPC government, caucus and many others associated with the party seem to hold the opinion that arrogance is a virtue.

It's difficult to know how this bizarre notion came to be.

Perhaps it's a trait that shows itself when you are desperate or perhaps it emerges when you are paranoid or then again, maybe it stems from an ideology that is focused on fighting the culture and institutions that make up the country that you currently are meant to govern.

As it relates to the Conservatives, my money would be on all three.

There is no question in my mind that this arrogance comes from the top and is being modeled by all who follow Harper. His caucus, his staff, some opinion writers, some bloggers...they all display the same arrogant tone that is either delivered with an attitude of superiority, childish taunts or vindictiveness.

The reason I say it comes from the top should be obvious to all when you consider Harper's history and his disdain for so much of what this country has grown to be. If you need a reminder, Elizabeth Thompson has an interesting letter here, penned by Harper when he was the leader of The National Citizens' Coalition. Fast forward to Tom Flanagan's book where he absolutely delights in telling us how election spending laws can be skirted and it's clear that they feel they have a right to do what they choose without consequence. That is arrogance. There is not a scintilla of regret, remorse or even thoughtful consideration of the ramifications.

I think this places Canada in a rather interesting albeit frightening, position at the moment. We have a party in power that believes the Canada we have become, is wrong, and their vision of it is right. They represent only one third of the population, (though personally I think the number of people that actually understand and believe in the Con vision is less than that), and they do not care what the remaining two thirds has to say. That's arrogance.

I brought up three points when I opened this post. Desperation, paranoia and ideology.

The ideology for all who pay attention is obvious. It was interesting in QP today and I think a good idea, for Dion and Ignatieff to speak to the Economy and leave the scandal stuff to their bench. They both raised the ideological issue of running the public purse so close to the line that the ability to create and/or fund programs becomes impossible. That part of the Con platform has never been clearly articulated and before now would have only been speculation. Flaherty did nothing to dispel the plan.

The desperation in my view is showing up on all sorts of areas. Attacking Dion in an effort to define him before he'd even filed his acceptance speech indicated that they knew they would be facing an opponent that would reveal the Con's, in sharp contrast, as being contrary to what Canadians expect from a government. I think it was Susan Delacourt on Politics last week that pointed to the fact that if you consider that they were willing to do anything to get Cadman's vote and willing to do anything to win an election, even overspend, you start to see a pattern of desperation.

Paranoia? Well again, this too should be obvious to all. From the famous mutterings of Harper hoping for a majority to the continued outright attack since taking power. Even yesterday the, enfant irascible, of the Con party, Pierre Poilievre suggested that Elections Canada tipped off the Lib's to the 'visit', (then changed to raid, now being termed the storming of Con offices). Hilarious really considering we all saw what happened. I somehow missed the battering rams and drawn arms. (BTW, he was made short work of on the panel that CBC Sunday put together, but of course given a pass when Craig Oliver had him on QP. Go figure?) He was equally as foolish in QP today. If the Lib's were ever given a gift it's this guy as the Con point man on the In and Out. He fabricates, misquotes, uses outdated material and generally looks like a buffoon.

I think Canadians are starting to get this party and government now. I'm sorry it's taken 2 years, but I'll allow that sometimes you need to let things play out in order to truly learn. They have been masterful at hiding and conning and given what the Lib's have been through, we've likely been less than masterful at exposing it.

I'm one of those impatient people that would prefer to have everyone have their light-bulb moment at once and wishes that the media actually stuck to reality and gave their audience some history and fact, but I accept the moment for what is.

Cross Country Check-Up, (which I am wont to listen to), had an interesting show yesterday. It spoke to how dysfunctional Parliament is at the moment and while Dion didn't get off the hook, call after call spoke to how the government has created an environment that doesn't work.

Committee's were mentioned, (gee, I thought only Kady O'Malley and I watched that stuff, lol), QP of course, Bills with hidden bit's in them, the Manual to shut down committees, nastiness, personal attack, well the list went on and frankly laid out what I and many others have been saying for many months. While sad for the country, I found it encouraging that Canadians are getting it.

This bears mentioning though. There was not one call that I heard supporting what Harper has done or is doing in the kind of uncertain terms that I used to hear on the program. That is a shift and tells me that Canadians have understood the arrogance of Harper.

Will the Con's shift strategy? I don't think so. For all their attempts to present a faux centrist position, I do not think Harper's fundamental ideology will not permit that. You see, they believe that the longer they are in power, (though not through the scandal stuff), the more they will be able to push their view under the radar, have it become the status quo and Canadians will shift to their mentality.

Good try I say, but to coin a phrase, it ain't gonna work. Underestimating those who elect you is arrogant. Most people easily recognize that trait and have a negative reaction to it. By assuming that no one will notice is beyond arrogant. Give me a word here, I'm at a loss.

Perhaps this phrase comes close?

He was like a cock who thought the sun had risen to hear him crow.

George Eliot


wilson said...

You always manage to select just the right pic for your posts knb, cute pic.

''We have a party in (power) opposition that believes the Canada we have become, is wrong, and their vision of it is right. They represent only one third of the population''
back at yah.

''the ability to create and/or fund programs becomes impossible''
True there is not enough surplus for Libs re resurrect their national daycare scheme from the ashes,
but there is plenty to fund existing programs,
infact, today it was revealed the Cons are in a $2b surplus of their budget forcast. so there.

I think you would be pretty hard pressed to find a politician or prominant member of the media, who isn't arrogant.
If you don't think you are right (arrogant), why would anyone else think you are right?

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

Talk about paranoia! I guess you forgot to mention that the sky is also falling.I new that the left was paranoid,but this beats the cake.I think you need to relax a little you'll feel better;)

A Eliz. said...

They can't take the heat. They are caught, yes and people are sick of hearing about the Sponsorship scandal, the one where they stole from the Liberal Party.
The Conservatives were attempting to steal from the public, and the people are beginning to see them as they really are.

Anonymous said...

Acually the anatomy of arrogance was a PM that said 'so what if a couple of million went missing, it was for the good of Canada' and then when questioned during an inquiry, he just bounced his balls on the table....I will admit that took balls to do that.

I still cannot believe I voted for him!

Karen said...

wilson, thx for the comment about the pic. They do tell a story on their own usually.

As to your comment, the official opposition may represent only 1/3, but the rest of the opposition is also against what the Con's are doing and that represents the majority of the country.

I think you have underestimated just how many groups are stinging from funding cuts brought on by the Con's. Early education and daycare is only one, but it's important. I also think the Con's underestimate just how many people registered their vote with them in protest and now wish they hadn't.

We'll see about the announced surplus. I hope it's true, but we've seen Flaherty cook the books before.

As to your last comment, you seem to miss the difference between confidence and arrogance. In fact, I'd say that is what your party misses.

Karen said...

right, you must look up the difference between paranoia and reality.

Karen said...

lizt, it's been a slow awakening, but I think finally it's begun.

wilson said...

'I still cannot believe I voted for him!'


lizt, let me give you a quick rundown of Adscam, as it seems you aren't up to speed.

Guite says Chretien and Gagliano gave him orders to impliment the sponsorship program, as it was played out.
Advertising agencies were paid for work they did not do,
then with the payment from the Cdn govt,
they convert it into cash ( judge Gomery called it money laundering)and give back a large portion of the ad fee, in cash, back to Liberal operatives,
who give the cash to Liberal candidates, and some went directly back to the Liberal party.
This was testimony in court, proven stolen money.
Martin had the Liberal party repay Canadians $1.4 million, acknowledging guilt of theft.
But, $41 million is missing, cash, stolen from the Canadian taxpayer and still unaccounted for.

We want the money back, and we want guilty Liberals to be charged, it seems the latter is about to be.

Conservative donations used to pay for Conservative ads, reported in full to Elections Canada,
all bank transactions for everyone to see,
is no Adscam.
Not even close.

Karen said...

anon I still cannot believe I voted for him!

That's what many are now saying about Harper.

That is what is happening today...but you go ahead and live in the past. It's going to get lonely back there.

Karen said...

wilson, I'm too tired to go through your comment, but I don't recall saying that the in and out was ad scam. I don't recall any Lib suggesting that sponsorship was right.

As to the taxpayer being on the hook...uh, that's what you guy's are suing for. Taxpayer's money that Flanagan said you hoodwinked us for.

wilson said...

As to the taxpayer being on the hook...uh, that's what you guy's are suing for. Taxpayer's money that Flanagan said you hoodwinked us for.

11 Conservative candidates were reimbursed.
EC reviewed the Cons in&out but did not review the Libs Dippers or Bloc in & outs.

Flanagan, haven't read his book..

penlan said...

Desperation is not the word I'd choose for the Cons up until recently with all the different scandals appearing, hotly, one right after the other.

Ruthless, which they still are, is how I'd describe their pre-election deviousness (ie Cadman)to gain power. And ruthless is what they have done to this country cutting social programs, etc. AND to income trusts, our seniors mostly, & the gutting of the country's coffers - creating financial instability. Woe is us!

Another word to add to the list would be ignorance. Ignorance of the people's needs & their intelligence. Let the Cons continue, a little longer, to cut their own throats.

Am in agreement with your other choice of words. :)

Another excellent post - thanks!

RuralSandi said...

From Oxford dictionary:

Arrogant: unduly appropriating authority or importance. aggressively conceipted or presumptuous; overbearing.

Yup - it fits - Harper wears it.

Karen said...

wilson As to the taxpayer being on the hook...uh, that's what you guy's are suing for. Taxpayer's money that Flanagan said you hoodwinked us for.

Sorry you've lost me.

I'm sure Flanagan's book is available at a library near you. You'd love it. It's all about the victimhood of being a con in this country and what you have to do to fight that. Rules aren't important, winning is.


Karen said...

Penlan, excellent choices!

Ruthless fits in almost all situations, maybe all.

Ignorance I'd change to willful ignorance. Though they do not think through their actions or words to their logical conclusion, they do willfully present their position believing that the populace is ignorant, imo.

A pretty loathesome bunch in my view.