posted by coyote
Anyway, Uncle Donny used to obsess about climbing those skeletal old paddle blade windmills you once saw on most prairie farms. The kind that pumped water into cattle watering tanks and such, on any number of home quarters. He figured if he could get up high enough, being able to see further than anything else would be an advantage.
Dogs ain't really climbers. With supercanine effort, he could scrabble about a third of the way up the tower. Then his fear of heights would kick in, his brain would go "tilt", he'd have a vertigo attack and fall off. Usually on his head.
"There goes Don Coyote, tilting off windmills again," the prairie chickens would say.
Here (finally, you might say...) is the point: sometimes, despite Uncle Donny's kinda-concussed example, I too feel the urge to tilt off windmills. It's a coyote thing. And careful readers of this space know I've tilted at The Right Honorable Prime Minister Stephen Joseph Harper since his first minority government.
We'd like to welcome a recent crapload of national pundits and columnists to this soiree. Because, hey, better late than never. Us semimythical coyotes have been well-placed to see plenty of cases of prairie populism. We expect to see more. They're all characterized by true believers, chugging deep from a heady brew of opportunism, mendacity and batshit-crazy. And us coyotes are of the considered opinion that of the lowdown, lyin' rattlesnakes that have led these movements, the PM is right, ummm, down there.
Now he, and this week's human furniture up at the PMO, wish us to think that a highly controlling PM was about the only person in the PMO who was not party to the strangely large and desperate scheme to pay off Senator-in-Disgrace Mike Duffy to, maybe, shut up and put up.
Since Duffy loudly and serially did not, everything about the PM's story has, ummm, evolved. Except for that one item about him having nothing to do with it. Kinda odd, for a guy obsessed with talking point discipline. And an unholy titanic sales job is going into making us buy this talking point above all others. I expect the calculation is, that the waxed, buffed, yet still-strangely-unattractive face of the Harper Government must cling to plausible deniability, no matter how implausible, for the party to survive.
For a man with Mr. Harper's record of high moral rectitude and avowed strong views on openness, transparency, accountability and responsibility in government, I'm sure such disappointing evidence of all this unethical lying and chicanery among his hand-picked political and administrative types would be so unbearable that he would quit politics in disgust. Except, ummm, oh, wait...!
At some point, I wonder if any of the cast (surely of thousands by now...) that have been forcibly frog-marched off the Plank, or the large stock of pliant, fresh noobs lining up for their turn, might begin to think that the party would actually fare better without the guy who's doing the shoving.
Yeah, he brought 'em to the promised land. But they're now well past that particular hallelujah. Are they not at least beginning to wonder if anybody will be left to be the party except him? I mean, after he knifes 'em all in the back to save his face, his implausible deniability, and remaining shreds of his reputation?
From where I sit, about a third of the way up this old windmill, the guy looks willing to kill the party he leads, to keep keep his illusions of self-respect. Kinda like another lyin' rattlesnake oil purveyor who, a couple of decades back, totally trashed an earlier mark of Tories. Whom Mr. Harper, if memory serves, froze out when he started to smell like tainted goods. Yet again.
Against type, them true believers might want to take notes and learn. In case.
posted by coyote
Mr. Speaker: This is kind of sad, actually. Sometime in the distant past, before Pamela Wallen chose to parlay down a (good, ackshully) journalism gig into that of a public entertainer (Who Wants to be a Millionaire, c'mon down...!) and thence to a public shill and hat-passer for the current
Capo, ummm, prime minister, she was one of the more trusted figures in the country.
By now, although us coyotes who sit independently haven't been tracking the polls, we imagine that her public credibility is, technically, pretty much shot. So much that we with a taste for the, ummm, visual arts, have finally ourselves descended into the photomanipulative mud pit with Wadena's former fave daughter.
But, Mr. Speaker, I want to be crystal clear on one point. The record will show that I have been absolutelyveryperfectly clear all along: it is only a set of unfortunate anatomical coincidences -- and that famous hair -- that led us to the mashup you see beside you in this post. We tried all weekend -- dog knows we tried -- to make Stephen J. Harper look more Nixonian. Problem was, after hours of twitchy, obsessive and mean-spirited micromanaging on the old computing device, he still only looked like a generic crook. So, really, no net gain.
It may have had something to do with the copious butter left on our paws from all the popcorn we scarfed during last week's guffaw-inducing nightly newscasts. Us coyotes are technoklutzes to start with. Slippery paws and dreadful popcorn hangovers do not improve this lamentable failing. But I think the PM's visual is more a case of, "if you've seen one moral grey-to-black area, you've seen 'em all."
So while the unfortunate Ms. Wallen will likely hang tough in the senate this week, that august, ummm, independent body will likely hoof her, on the strong urging of the main perp.
Because some anonymous kingpin -- let's call this mysterious miscreant, for the sake of convenience and pejorative labelling, "Skeevy Steevy" -- is the one who appointed the Three Senateers in the first place. By all means, give his discarded proxies the attention, and if warranted, the heat they may deserve. Something less like a lynch mob of pitchfork and torch waving PMO sock puppets, and more like due process would be appropriate.
But,Mr. Speaker, the body politic must keep the ol' probative blowtorch squarely upon the ass of that guy trying his best to keep lurking in his own moral shadows -- the calculatedly bland Skeevy Steevy.
Us coyotes think that no matter how many senators, chiefs of staff and and parliamentary secretaries get creamed by the bus, the source of the rot is the guy who appointed them. The guy whose uber-partisan approach led to a whole whack of nudges and winks around public expense account billings in aid of collecting change for his political machine. The guy whose former parliamentary secretary stands accused of trying to buy an election. The guy whose party was found guilty of robocalls and declared it a great victory. The obsessive micromanager who would have us believe that he has completely firewalled himself from a scheme to buy off a senator's silence in the name of "plausible deniability".
Mr. Speaker, here's the skinny on Skeevy Steevy: if you create the culture; if you hire all of the perps you now slag, if you needed to create mechanisms for plausible deniability so that you can tell Parliament and the country's citizens with a nearly straight face that you were in the dark about something that has your greasy proxy pawprints all over it, if you try to blow it all off at a party convention with smirking bluster, you're culpable.
You're Nixon, laffin' boy.
posted by coyote
This weekend, ReformaTory faithful will finally gather in the cold light of post-Hallowe'en Calgary to
convene triumphantly eat humble pie and consider their party's dubious future.
They might wonder, with cause, if the floods of biblical proportion (heh) that scrammed the original convention back in May were a dark portent. They might wonder, with cause, whether their god-like leader is actually a tin idol trying to smudge out a long series of sizable fibs with the kind of linguistic technicalities that allow him to think to his own self that he's still telling something resembling the truth. They might wonder, with cause, why, the tighter the PM squeezes down on message control the more crap squirts out between his fingers. They might wonder, with cause, why the hell the wheels are grinding off of their deadly bus. They might wonder, with cause, whether the foundation of their
strong stable Conservative majority, ummm, moral certitudes, is become purest runny Jello.
They might. Some of the more prominent rats in and around the old blue machine are blinking nervously in the harsh glare of unaccustomed daylight. But they have not quite yet broken into full disorderly retreat. I digress. Slightly.
So it seems more likely that most of The Base may grudgingly accept their leaders' slightly sweaty and trembling invitation to ignore that distracting senate scandal (among myriad others...) and take a
flying leap long, warm bubbly soak in the party's patented Kool-Aid Jacuzzi. And feel free to drink a little of it. Actually a lot.
It may help those base delegates to ignore the
even baser clouds of flying monkeys in short pants PMO kids. who will be frantically trying to winch together both their crumpled leader's mojo and the tattered curtain that they would really, really like to be shrouding the unpleasantness of Duffster*uck.
It might work. . . because, you know, those amoral, lying lefties ain't fit to run the country.
On the other hand, they might just be left with a bad aftertaste, and the nagging suspicion that 'somebody' very senior in the Prime Minister's Office has been peeing copiously into the hot tub, all along. . .
posted by coyote
Gentle Reader: A smackeral of matriarchal advice from my wise ol' Gramma Coyote:
"After vast quantities of bodies have been hoofed under a particular bus, it is most instructive to closely watch who's driving, rather than the calculated sideshow that the wheels clobber. That is where the critter who has most to gain generally sits. So where the answers most likely are."
posted by coyote
Wow. No matter how you look at it, it was a tough week for the old popcorn maker here at Casa Coyote. Prudent semimythical quadrupeds have laid in industrial quantities of kernels and butter for the inevitable long, drawn shakeout.
All I got right now is that it totally depends on which lying sack of, ummm, spin, you care to disbelieve marginally less at a given moment. And whether you can untangle the double negatives in that last sentence. Because it definitely refers to two negatives. . .
posted by coyote
Us coyotes were scuttling down a back alley this morning when the geospatial sensory flow (okay, the smell of hot grease...) prompted memories of the last time we hit a Mickey D's.
Chucking limp fries at the Dwarf, making rude blooping noises in the pop with our straws, and dancing to the beat of the hapless counterperson's rotebot drone. You know, the one who asks each customer who's already ordered fries -- because asking "Dooya wan' frieswiddat? would be redundant, but The Corporation demands that its serfs squeeze out ever more profit from that order -- "Can I soopersize datforya?"
You know if s/he doesn't say it, the poor shnook is going to get docked either brownie points in that fast-track Management Training Program with the great polyester uniform, or, worse, some of their minimum wage. The Corp demands loyalty. Although sadly, Morgan Spurlock's famously surreal little opus has kind of satirized that particular tagline into perdition.
For reasons best known to my amydogdala, I wondered how to help Big Fast Food. I mean, look at it. It's obviously going broke. It needs a new "super". But what will that be? Like, what's bigger 'n super?
I guess you could ask, "Can I Mega Size that for you?" But mega is so last-century. Everything is mega already. So not that. Then I started to wonder what the meta-analysis on this would reveal. This blog was, after all, a metablog at one point in the distant, sunny past. The Irregulars specialized in this kind of crap.
The answer struck me the way the bottom wires of electric fences hit certain carelessly wagging tails: "Can I Metasta Size that for you?"
You're welcome, Fast Food Industry... you know where to send the love and royalty cheques. We hear Canada Post isn't interested in delivering mail anymore, so use E-transfers. We're here, waiting for 'em pour in. Much like overdiluted cola syrup.
posted by coyote
Possibly because the sitting government and the armed forces have learned nothing - nothing - from the whole F-35 stealth fighter debacle. Or possibly because they think they can convert snowmobiles into costly yet marginal fighter-bomber aircraft, unnoticed, at a later date.
Because, you know, "Tory Logic". And "Military Intelligence". . .
posted by coyote
So news that HarperCo's 'new-look' cabinet appointments came complete with PMO-approved (Or, ummm, maybe disapproved... semimythical coyotes are famously unclear on etymological niceties.) enemies lists in the ol' ministerial briefing books are no shock at this stage.
Neither is the predictably hurried "no comment", from the PMO kids, who try to keep their semi-anonymous, fully-rabid partisan sockpuppetry out of the public eye in lieu of, you know, reassuringly bland, focus-grouped media lines like Strong Stable Conservative Majority and The Economy.
Except. This government's reeling ethos lately looks about as stable as that of an untreated paranoid schizophrenic. And that little cult mag, The Economist, internationally respected and not-so-left-wing, has been serially, seriously critical of HarperCo's alleged economic chops. And a little understanding, nay respect, for those who happen to breathe the air outside one's own ideological iron lung is supposed to typify a working democracy.
Some few pundits are suddenly recalling that Richard Nixon, another famously paranoid conservative who hated daylight on his government and tried to black it out, also had an Enemies List. Hey, it's what pundits are for. Come to that, Nixon also tried to ignore and/or lose inconvenient evidence that spiked his reassuringly bland media line. Those who follow history can draw every lesson they need to know from a quip that decades first turned cliché, then adage: "It's not really about the crime, it's about the coverup."
Still holds, I think. But being fans of investigative science (heh...), we coyotes await avidly any new evidence of daylight's effects on sweaty five o'clock shadows.