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A Howardesque Leader (Mark Steyn Introduces Canada's Stephen Harper To Australians Alert)
Australian News ^ | 01/25/06 | Mark Steyn

Posted on 01/24/2006 7:51:06 AM PST by goldstategop

A SAD day for Michael Moore. In the event of a terrible tragedy, the corpulent anti-corporate crusader is wont, like the Queen and Kofi Annan, to issue a formal statement to the world. And his "Michael Moore Statement On Canadian Election" made distressing reading: "Oh, Canada - you're not really going to elect a Conservative majority on Monday, are you? That's a joke, right?"

Well, no. In a very Canadian kind of revolution, we rose up yesterday and threw the bums out but gave them a soft, fluffy landing, nevertheless installing in office a minority government that somehow managed to get itself elected despite having the word "Conservative" in its name.

For Tories, it was a good night, if not a great night. But, given that the party was reduced to two seats in the 1993 debacle, after 12 years in the wilderness most Canadian conservatives will take a strong minority government as a spectacular landslide. We'd be dipping our voting fingers in maple syrup and triumphantly waving them at the UN observers if they hadn't all fallen asleep 20 minutes into the thrilling election-night coverage.

For the past century, Canada's ruling Liberals have been the democratic world's most consistently successful political party. This time round, mired in a series of scandals that were turning Canada into the G7's first Third World kleptocracy, the flailing Trudeaupians adopted an even more ferocious version of their usual strategy: scare the voters back to Nanny. As the Liberals warned Canadians - or, rather, shrieked at them - Stephen Harper will take away "a woman's right to choose"! The unwanted boys you'll be forced to have will grow up to be Bush cannon fodder in Iraq, and the unwanted girls will be sold as white slaves for Halliburton corporate cocktail parties round the pool at Dick Cheney's ranch.

Well, that's certainly why I voted Conservative, but it's hard to believe many of my fellow Canadians (and even my fellow Quebecers) felt the same way. South of the border, Michael Moore wasn't the only one shocked by Liberal attack ads painting Scary Stephen as a Bush-loving neocon warmonger who'll slash and gut Canada's lavish social programs. For the past two weeks, American radio hosts have been asking me, with drooling anticipation: "Wow! Tell us about this great guy, Stephen Harper!"

And then I'd take a deep breath and try to explain that, no, he's not Canada's Thatcher or Reagan. But, with a bit of luck, he might be Canada's John Howard. Not in the sense that he's a blunt, no-nonsense, plain speaker: that seems to have been bred out of our political DNA, alas. Howard is an ordinary bloke, but he's not bland. By comparison, Harper is not just unexciting, he's unexciting even by Canadian standards! As he told a meeting in Ontario the other day, "Bland sells."

Apparently it does. Even "the politics of personal destruction" (in Bill Clinton's phrase) depends on a certain basic plausibility. Canada's Liberal Party produced at one point an unintentionally hilarious attack ad intended to suggest that Scary Stephen's unexceptional proposal for some modest reorganisation of the military was a covert plan to introduce martial law.

It began with an ominous drumbeat and then, in urgent staccato typewriter script over a close-up of the Tory leader: "Stephen Harper actually announced he wants to increase military presence in our cities. Canadian cities. [Drumbeat] Soldiers with guns. In our cities. [Drumbeat] In Canada. We did not make this up. [Drumbeat] Choose your Canada." Rimshot! You might conceivably make this pitch work super-imposed over a close-up of certain hatchet-faced politicians. But it's hard to get away with "Aaaaieee! Here comes the right-wing death-beast!" and then show a picture of a fellow who looks like one of the more avuncular back-up singers on The Andy Williams Christmas Show. By the end of the campaign the Liberals were sounding more than a little unhinged - but, to an extent, it worked, at least in the sense that it terrified enough of the base back into the polling booths to prevent a meltdown.

Obviously I wish he really were as scary a right-wing death-beast as the Liberals say he is, but there's no point pretending that's what the Canadian electorate wants. John O'Sullivan, a former editor of National Review and Thatcher's long-time adviser, observed that post-war Canadian history is summed up by the old Monty Python song, "I'm a lumberjack and I'm OK", which begins as a robust paean to the manly virtues of a rugged life in the north woods but ends with the lumberjack having gradually morphed into some transvestite pick-up singing that he likes to "wear high heels, suspenders and a bra" and "dress in women's clothing and hang around in bars".

I'm not saying Canadian men are literally cross-dressers - certainly no more than 35, 40 per cent of us are - but nonetheless a nation that in 1945 had the fourth-largest armed forces in the world has undergone such a total makeover that it's now a country that prioritises the secondary impulses of society - government health care, government day care, rights and entitlements from cradle to grave - over all the primary ones.

As I said, Scary Stephen's no Ron or Maggie. But as a young man in the '80s he was spurred into politics by his clear understanding - unlike most so-called Canadian "conservatives" - that his country had missed out on Thatcher-Reagan economic liberalisation. Essentially, he's a political economist with a libertarian streak: he thinks that if you leave taxpayers with more of their money they're more likely to spend it in ways that do more social good than letting the government disburse it.

And here's where I think Harper could prove Howardesque. He shares two of the Australian Prime Minister's great qualities: he's very secure in his sense of himself, and he has a very shrewd sense of what's politically possible. If he plays those cards right - and I'd bet he will - he could be, as Howard has been, one of those unflamboyantly transformative leaders who leaves the political landscape significantly altered.

I can't claim to know Stephen Harper well. But a couple of years ago, at some international confab, I introduced him to a British cabinet minister as "leader of Her Majesty's loyal Opposition", neglecting to specify the realm. From the momentarily startled look on his face, the Blairite bigwig seemed to think I was introducing him to that week's UK Tory leader. British Conservatives should be so lucky. A month before all those American radio hosts started badgering me about Stephen Harper, they were badgering me about this new guy in Britain - I forget his name, but he's very cool and glamorous, full of charisma. Ginger Spice, I think. No, hang on, Austin Powers.

Well, anyway, whatever the Brit guy's name is, the UK Tories have done what a lot of parties do: pick a great personality and then see if they can order him up a political philosophy from room service. John Howard in Australia proves that's the wrong way round to do it, and so I think will Stephen Harper.

And, if over the next few years Canada upgrades its presence on the international scene from "All But Invisible" to a functioning member of the Anglosphere, that will be all to the good, too.


TOPICS: Australia/New Zealand; Canada; Constitution/Conservatism; Culture/Society; Editorial; Foreign Affairs; Government; Miscellaneous; News/Current Events; Philosophy; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: australia; australian; canada; canadianelection; johnhoward; marksteyn; stephenharper; steyn
Is it time to welcome Canada back to the Anglosphere? As Mark Steyn informs Australians, Canada's Stephen Harper may just turn out to be in the mold of John Howard. The Australian Liberals haven't done that badly. Stephen Harper's Conservatives will probably be underestimated by the MSM and the Left. It may be a sad day for Michael Moore but conservatives around the world are throwing up high-fives! God Bless Canada.

(Denny Crane: "I Don't Want To Socialize With A Pinko Liberal Democrat Commie. Say What You Like About Republicans. We Stick To Our Convictions. Even When We Know We're Dead Wrong.")

1 posted on 01/24/2006 7:51:09 AM PST by goldstategop
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To: goldstategop
We'd be dipping our voting fingers in maple syrup and triumphantly waving them at the UN observers if they hadn't all fallen asleep 20 minutes into the thrilling election-night coverage.

BWAHAHAHAHA! Nobody does it better than Steyn!

2 posted on 01/24/2006 7:54:45 AM PST by TheBigB (Time waits for no man. Unless that man is Chuck Norris.)
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To: goldstategop

The Liberals are late getting their "This Election Was Stolen!" rhetoric going. Probably can't find a suitable Diebold or Halliburton link.


3 posted on 01/24/2006 7:55:21 AM PST by JennysCool (Non-Y2K-Compliant)
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To: Pokey78

fyi and ping list...


4 posted on 01/24/2006 7:55:33 AM PST by eureka! (Hey Lefties and 'Rats: Over 3 more years of W. Hehehehe....)
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To: goldstategop
A little aside: would it be too "mean spirited" of me (HA HA HA) to celebrate the added juicy fact that Belinda's idiotic defection to the Liberal Party last May now looks more foolish than ever?? She got to be a Cabinet Minister for 6 months, and now let's hope that she is in the political wilderness for a loonnngggg time to come!

http://www.cbc.ca/story/canada/national/2005/05/17/stronach-liberals050517.html

Stronach said that someday, the Conservatives will grow and strengthen to become a worthy challenger to the Liberals. In the meantime, she thinks her place is with a party that is more responsive to the needs of cities, women and young people. She also said she is looking forward to tackling the Gomery recommendations when they are presented. "Only when the people of Canada have renewed confidence and faith in the systems of government can we return to economic prosperity."
5 posted on 01/24/2006 8:04:40 AM PST by Enchante (Democrats: "We are ALL broken and worn out, our party & ideas, what else is new?")
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To: Enchante
She and Scott Brison should enjoy their exile while it lasts. And the Liberals will be too consumed with in-fighting and choosing a new leader to present any real threat to the Conservatives for awhile. They don't have Trudeau or Chretien to rescue them from a stint in the political wilderness.

(Denny Crane: "I Don't Want To Socialize With A Pinko Liberal Democrat Commie. Say What You Like About Republicans. We Stick To Our Convictions. Even When We Know We're Dead Wrong.")

6 posted on 01/24/2006 8:08:00 AM PST by goldstategop (In Memory Of A Dearly Beloved Friend Who Lives On In My Heart Forever)
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To: GMMAC; fanfan

(((.)))


7 posted on 01/24/2006 8:15:24 AM PST by Squawk 8888 (We Acadiens have nothing to do with Québec)
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To: goldstategop

Sounds promising. I am looking forward to following him in his tenure....

Howard certainly surprised me.... Who knew, when he first was elected that he would be so formidable.

(with some help from his pathetic opposition off course)

Cheers.


8 posted on 01/24/2006 8:17:18 AM PST by Eurotwit (WI)
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To: Squawk 8888; GMMAC; Pikamax; Former Proud Canadian; Great Dane; Alberta's Child; headsonpikes; ...

Canada Ping!

Please FReepmail me to get on or off this Canada ping list.


9 posted on 01/24/2006 8:19:29 AM PST by fanfan (" The liberal party is not corrupt " Prime Minister Paul Martin)
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To: goldstategop
And, if over the next few years Canada upgrades its
presence on the international scene from "All But
Invisible" to a functioning member of the Anglosphere,
that will be all to the good, too.

Geezuz H, get 2 Aussie know-it-alls in the room and you get
3 opinions.
Here's the Aussie opinion Torontonians got the morning
before they went to vote:

Is Australia a model for Canada

10 posted on 01/24/2006 8:36:15 AM PST by CaptainCanada (The Canadian electorate is under no obligation to perpetuate foolishness)
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To: goldstategop

Woo Hoo! Progress to the North. Let's keep them in our prayers.


11 posted on 01/24/2006 8:37:56 AM PST by trebb ("I am the way... no one comes to the Father, but by me..." - Jesus in John 14:6 (RSV))
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To: goldstategop

Welcome back Canada bump


12 posted on 01/24/2006 8:45:43 AM PST by Tribune7
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To: CaptainCanada
"Anna Yeatman is an Australian who teaches political science at the University of Alberta and is a tier one Canada Research Chair-Social Theory and Policy."

Another ivory tower elitist/internationalist who knows what's best for us plebs.

13 posted on 01/24/2006 9:00:39 AM PST by kanawa (Freaking panty wetting, weakspined bliss-ninny socialist punks)
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To: goldstategop

Canada shall now be renamed "Jesusland North." :)


14 posted on 01/24/2006 9:05:41 AM PST by dfwgator
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To: kanawa
"Anna Yeatman is an Australian who teaches political
science at the University of Alberta and is a tier one
Canada Research Chair-Social Theory and Policy."

That's fantastic. She can teach the kids in Alberta how to
become good Aussie-like socialists...
How the hell did they ever allow her into Alberta, of all places.
Throw her ass out of the country as a foreign agitator.

15 posted on 01/24/2006 9:07:20 AM PST by CaptainCanada (The Canadian electorate is under no obligation to perpetuate foolishness)
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To: CaptainCanada
From the Aussie's article.

I propose that what is at stake is the entire value orientation and tonality of Canadian political and institutional life.


Not to worry there, littlt leftie, because the people have spoken, the bastards. We still want more free stuff. At worst they may have to suffer the indignity of a Prime Minister ending a speech with "God Bless Canada" for a year or so.
16 posted on 01/24/2006 9:44:33 AM PST by caveat emptor
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To: goldstategop
South of the border, Michael Moore wasn't the only one shocked by Liberal attack ads painting Scary Stephen as a Bush-loving neocon warmonger who'll slash and gut Canada's lavish social programs. For the past two weeks, American radio hosts have been asking me, with drooling anticipation: "Wow! Tell us about this great guy, Stephen Harper!"

LOL! And those were the liberal radio hosts...

17 posted on 01/24/2006 9:49:17 AM PST by Billthedrill
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To: goldstategop; pookie18; fanfan; Pikamax; Former Proud Canadian; Great Dane; Alberta's Child; ...

A few Tory 'toons
with help from our FRiend
"Pookie 18"












18 posted on 01/24/2006 10:17:31 AM PST by GMMAC (paraphrasing Parrish: "damned Liberals, I hate those bastards!")
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To: goldstategop

Ohmy! I am so heartened by Steyn's article! And so very happy for the great country Canada!


19 posted on 01/24/2006 1:07:10 PM PST by WaterDragon
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To: fanfan

Could you add me to the list? Thanks.


20 posted on 01/24/2006 4:15:28 PM PST by NZerFromHK (Leftism is like honey mixed with arsenic: initially it tastes good, but that will end up killing you)
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To: goldstategop
"By the end of the campaign the Liberals were sounding more than a little unhinged - but, to an extent, it worked, at least in the sense that it terrified enough of the base back into the polling booths to prevent a meltdown."

Therefore, count on the Liberals out-Democrating the Democrats in attempting to demonize the PM for the next few years...
21 posted on 01/24/2006 4:19:35 PM PST by decal (Too many people mistake "tolerance" for "approval")
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To: decal
Rush said not only is the MSM blacking out news of the Canadian election, its inevitable the Liberals will refuse to accept the legitimacy of the Conservative win and try rage and hate to claw their way back into power just like the Democrats are bidding to do here in the States.

(Denny Crane: "I Don't Want To Socialize With A Pinko Liberal Democrat Commie. Say What You Like About Republicans. We Stick To Our Convictions. Even When We Know We're Dead Wrong.")

22 posted on 01/24/2006 4:22:10 PM PST by goldstategop (In Memory Of A Dearly Beloved Friend Who Lives On In My Heart Forever)
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To: goldstategop
Let's hope so - it'll be every bit as successful as it's been here.

Maybe the Dems will let them "borrow" Howard Dean.
23 posted on 01/24/2006 4:27:36 PM PST by decal (Too many people mistake "tolerance" for "approval")
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To: kanawa

I have made posts to several Australian newspapers complaining about this person's meddling in the Canadian elections. Today several newspapers have reports on the Canadian election results and provision for feedback. They include "The Telegraph" (a Sydney newspaper) and "The Courier Mail" (Brisbane).


24 posted on 01/24/2006 6:14:27 PM PST by Fair Go
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To: goldstategop
But it's hard to get away with "Aaaaieee! Here comes the right-wing death-beast!" and then show a picture of a fellow who looks like one of the more avuncular back-up singers on The Andy Williams Christmas Show.


Yeah, I can see that.
(And the Five Neat Guys are from Canada, too!)

Obviously I wish he really were as scary a right-wing death-beast as the Liberals say he is, but there's no point pretending that's what the Canadian electorate wants. John O'Sullivan, a former editor of National Review and Thatcher's long-time adviser,observed that post-war Canadian history is summed up by the old Monty Python song, "I'm a lumberjack and I'm OK", which begins as a robust paean to the manly virtues of a rugged life in the north woods but ends with the lumberjack having gradually morphed into some transvestite pick-up singing that he likes to "wear high heels, suspenders and a bra" and "dress in women's clothing and hang around in bars".


Yeah, I can see that.
Good luck for him. I don't think he knows what he's in for....

25 posted on 01/25/2006 4:47:49 AM PST by Watery Tart ("Just like my dear Mammar.....")
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To: NZerFromHK; GMMAC; Snowyman
Canadian Election 2006: my take (personal post)
Posted by fanfan to NZerFromHK
On Bloggers & Personal 01/24/2006 7:11:33 AM EST · 25 of 30

Please do not ping me again.

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A Howardesque Leader (Mark Steyn Introduces Canada's Stephen Harper To Australians Alert)
Posted by NZerFromHK to fanfan
On News/Activism 01/24/2006 7:15:28 PM EST · 20 of 23

Could you add me to the list? Thanks.

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Are we going to have to have a problem here?

What part of "Please stay away from me" are you having trouble with?
26 posted on 01/25/2006 5:07:24 AM PST by fanfan (" The liberal party is not corrupt " Prime Minister Paul Martin)
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To: fanfan
Maybe your request is getting lost in the geographical translation. Try this...
Image hosting by TinyPic
27 posted on 01/25/2006 5:56:27 AM PST by kanawa (Freaking panty wetting, weakspined bliss-ninny socialist punks)
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To: kanawa; GMMAC
That's funny Kanawa!

Unfortunately I am now in receipt of a PM from the same offender.

I guess I'll have to get the mods involved.
28 posted on 01/25/2006 7:19:09 AM PST by fanfan (" The liberal party is not corrupt " Prime Minister Paul Martin)
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To: fanfan; Pikamax; Former Proud Canadian; Great Dane; Alberta's Child; headsonpikes; Ryle; ...



h'mmm ... appears to a rather large
BLACK BALL!

Note: no FReepers were involuntarily pinged
in the transmission of this post.

29 posted on 01/25/2006 9:08:40 AM PST by GMMAC (paraphrasing Parrish: "damned Liberals, I hate those bastards!")
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To: goldstategop

Now I can't wait for New Zealand to go conservative...plus we're making gains in other areas, i.e. Germany...


30 posted on 01/25/2006 9:11:16 AM PST by Heartofsong83
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To: fanfan


31 posted on 01/25/2006 9:20:49 AM PST by GMMAC (paraphrasing Parrish: "damned Liberals, I hate those bastards!")
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To: Heartofsong83

I think the Germans realize they are technically bankrupt - they cannot afford their generous pensions.


32 posted on 01/25/2006 12:40:03 PM PST by Sam Gamgee (May God have mercy upon my enemies, because I won't. - Patton)
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To: CaptainCanada
Is Australia a model for Canada

If Anna Yeatman no longer recognizes "her" Australia, she must be appalled by Alberta.

The term "Aussie twit" comes to mind...

33 posted on 01/25/2006 10:13:40 PM PST by okie01 (The Mainstream Media: IGNORANCE ON PARADE)
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To: goldstategop

The Liberal Party of Canada is also over $30,000,000 in debt. So we won't be hearing from those scumbuckets for quite some time.


34 posted on 01/26/2006 10:04:45 AM PST by Ashamed Canadian
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To: dfwgator
Canada shall now be renamed "Jesusland North."

LOL. Sounds great to me!!!!!

35 posted on 01/26/2006 10:06:47 AM PST by Ashamed Canadian
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