The ghosts of great Progressive Conservatives must be rolling in their graves when they see what the Harper government has done to Canadian politics.
What would the likes of John Diefenbaker, Robert Stanfield and John Robarts, all honourable politicians, be thinking today? Dismissing the seriousness of the “robo-calls” scandal is just the latest in a long list of disreputable actions by the Harper government. In the past three years, they ignored the recommendations of the all-party committee on poverty-reduction. They called the attempted coalition among the opposition parties “undemocratic” when it was constitutionally legal and had the backing of over 50% of voters. They cut taxes for corporations and the rich on the discredited theory that it would create jobs. They refuse to listen to objective expert advice when forming policy. They employ nasty attack ads against opposition parties. They falsely claimed that the cancellation of the long-form census was endorsed by Statistics Canada (this led to the resignation of the head of Statistics Canada in protest). They punish civil servants who speak truth to power, in fact firing the Ombudsman for Veterans Affairs who stood up for better treatment of veterans. I could go on and on.
Victor Pocaterra, former director of Conservative Riding associations in both Guelph and Kitchener summed it up recently in a letter to the editor of the Toronto Star: “They have gone against Canadian values and have made a joke out of our democracy.” Pocaterra is a former insider, who “has seen what is talked about in the party” and now deeply regrets all the work he has done for the Conservative Party of Canada. I suspect there are many more like him.
Simcoe Grey NDP