Saturday, November 12, 2005

On that "Hidden Agenda" clap-trap....

"I don't believe for a moment that the Conservative Party of Canada has a hidden agenda".

"I don't want the Conservative Party of Canada to form the next government".

So tell me everyone, are these two statements mutually exclusive? No? Because every time I reiterate my intention to try to keep the Tories out of power, I am assailed by conservatives for being a (stupid, or corrupt, or lazy... take your pick of insult) Ontario voter who has fallen for the "hidden agenda" clap-trap. After all, why would anyone who wasn't corrupt (or stupid) vote Liberal? My answer? To keep Stephen Harper from becoming Prime Minister.

Are Tory supporters so convinced that they are right that they can't even fathom someone disagreeing with their policies? Do they really believe that no one would ever vote against Harper, unless they were bribed, or were just too stupid to know any better?

I never fell for the idea that the Tories had some devious, neanderthal "hidden agenda". In fact, I railed against such a silly idea. But the reason I railled against it was mostly because I believe that their ACTUAL agenda is bad enough for me. Not only did I not fall for the hidden agenda line, it was completely wasted on me. I for one am perfectly clear about what the CPC's agenda is, and I don't like it. So just what am I supposed to do?

I think I'm your typical Ontario voter, which means everyone should want my vote. But all I ever hear Harper say is that he just can't fathom why anyone would vote Liberal. He's not particularly intersested, sofar as I can see, in convincing me to vote for him, as he is in chastizing me for not voting for him. So I'd like to hear from some Blogging Tories (and everyone else who'd like to comment) about just what they expect a Canadian who thinks the Liberal party has moved too far to the right to do. I'll probably end up voting NDP, but I must say, I'll be sickened if Harper becomes Prime Minister, and if that DOES happen, I'll probably spend the entire mandate of a CPC minority government feeling guilty about not voting Liberal. And I won't be alone. Which makes me wonder how all of those like me will vote in the next election after that (Liberal landslide anyone?).

Anyway. I'm sick of being called corrupt or stupid for not supporting the CPC, and I've come to believe that the only political myth in Canada bigger than the idea that the Tories have a "hidden agenda" is the Tories' delusion that fear of a "hidden agenda" is the only thing keeping them from making ground in Ontario. I think I know what the CPC stands for, and I think I know what Harper believes (he thinks the Liberals are corrupt... right?) and it's that ACTUAL agenda that I find distasteful. And yet Tories still seem to believe that I should ignore the fact that their party will move the country in the exact OPPOSITE direction to the one I want the country to go in, just because some members of the Liberal party of Canada have been found to be corrupt. To me, that just doesn't make sense.


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Peter said...

I know exactly what you mean. I am not under any delusion that makes me think that the Liberals are some super great party, but when given the alternative they are the best, imho.

However I disagree about the hidden agenda. I use to agree with you, but I started a little bit of a quest awhile ago to get one simple question answered:

Preamble: The Tories say they will make the first $15,000 earnt tax free and then further reduce income tax by 1%. That means a loss of 19 billion in revenue for the feds.

Question: How will the Tories make up for this shortfall, what programs are they going to cut and by how much?

I have yet to receive any answer and have begun to document my efforts on my own blog. The Tories refuse to answer this question. That means only one thing to me, they do have a hidden agenda, whatever that may be.

AWR said...

Bravo, Peter, you are spot on. They lie and lie and lie, and then they have the guts to accuse others of lying. No one in this country lies as much as the Tories.

Candace said...

Peter, what about the millions, possibly billions, wasted in programs like the sponsorship scandal, the HRDC scandal, the long gun registry, etc etc etc? By eliminating waste, much can be accomplished.

And don't forget that this year there will be what, a $10-12 billion surplus? So they only need to find $7-9 (some of which is outlined above)

Candace said...

PS: Vote green

Mike said...

Yeah, this isw one of my pet peeves as well LKO. Alot of some of our more vocal CPC supporters assume the whole 'Ontario supports corruption' thing or we are too dumb (Candace is not one of these btw - she is very good at actually debating policy and issues).

I think it boils down to the issues that guys like Mike Brock and Andrew at BBG (God rest his soul) tried to get out - don;t tell us to vote CPC because they aren't Liberal, tell us why to vote CPC. And accept that not everyone will think that the policy is a good idea.

Debate the policy on its merits, not some regional silliness or hyperbole about Ontarians accepting corruption. that certainly isn't going to get anyone to vote for you.

Division and name calling rarely work.

Lord Kitchener's Own said...

Yeah Mike,

The problem is, everytime you ask a Conservative or Tory supporter to explain their policies, and defend their policies, rather than simply attack, attack, attack, they tell you that you've fallen for the "hidden agenda" meme, and insist that their party is all about policy, and you just want them to stop attacking the Liberals because you love corruption. In actual fact, I'd like them to stop attacking the Liberals because it's NOT WORKING, but I can't seem to convince any Tories of that, no matter how many polls back me up.

And if you haven't been getting that message from them? If you haven't heard all those many many policy speeches Harper gave in between bouts of telling Canadians that he simply can't understand why they won't vote for him (and suggesting that maybe it's because they aren't that bright). Well, that's your fault, not theirs.

I think this attitude comes from the top down. I think Harper honestly can't even fathom why someone would vote Liberal, and since he can't even understand where you're coming from, he'll be damned if he'll try to convince you of the obvious. I used to think he'd grow out of it, but now I'm just getting impatient.

And annoyed.

Leave it to Stephen Harper and Jack Layton to make the worst government in years look good. I didn't think anyone could do that.... but look at the two of them go!

Ted L. Nancy said...

To comment on a different part of your post, though the other comments have been very interesting, I'd recommend you vote for whom you like and think less of the 'strategy' of it all.

Too many people vote liberal instead of NDP or Green because they fear what the CPC will do.

IMHO the CPC will not be forming a majority in parl., and a minority CPC that must align closely with a strong NDP would a. probably last a very short time b. finally bring the liberals down a much needed notch or three.