Musings —08.10.2015 07:52 AM—
- Yes, yes, yes: we all know. Former Harper Chief of Staff Nigel Wright is back in Canada, getting ready to testify in the interminable Mike Duffy trial. So what. In the larger scheme of things, it doesn’t matter.
- Two things.
- One, Nigel Wright. Almost two years ago, I wrote about him in the Sun. Here’s what I wrote.
- “Full disclosure: My ex-wife was Wright’s partner for many years. They met in the office of Prime Minister Brian Mulroney.Wright and I didn’t socialize, me being a hardcore Alberta Liberal, and him being a hardcore Ontario Conservative. We weren’t friends.I didn’t ask my wife-to-be much about him. But, eventually, I learned a few things. A picture emerged.Nigel Wright was adopted and brought up in a loving, good family. His parents were not wealthy, and Wright worked hard for everything he got. He was a deeply religious Anglican who, for a time, contemplated the priesthood.He devoted himself to his studies and charitable causes, his faith and — almost as much — the Conservative party.
Wright conquered on Bay St. as a lawyer and a dealmaker, to be sure, becoming a millionaire at a very young age. But blue Tory blood ran through his veins — and there are only a handful of unelected people in this country who gave as much to conservative causes. Fundraising, policy, organization: Nigel Wright did it all.
On Tuesday, while Stephen Harper cast him as a liar and a wrongdoer in the privileged confines of the House of Commons, Nigel Wright maintained a stoic silence, as he has throughout this sordid affair. While the most powerful man in Canada attempted to destroy his reputation, Wright said nothing.
Unable to believe what I was witnessing, I tweeted that he needed to fight back. Part of my motivation for doing so was empathy. During the federal Liberal civil wars, some of Paul Martin’s thugs had attempted to destroy the reputations of those of us who remained loyal to Jean Chretien. I knew a little of what Wright must be feeling.
But, mostly, I could not believe this was happening to — of all people — Nigel Wright. If there is anyone of my generation who has devoted themselves more selflessly to the Conservative party, I do not know who it is.
It goes without saying, I don’t know the full facts in the Senate scandal, which has become a cancer on the government. But I do know that blaming Nigel Wright for all of it is not merely dishonest — it is disgusting.”
- Me and Nigel weren’t drinking buddies or anything, but I knew him by reputation. And I knew him to be a decent and honest man. He doesn’t deserve what Donald Bayne, Duffy’s lawyer, is going to be doing to him commencing this week.
- That’s Nigel. But what about scandal? Does all this incessant histrionics about Duffy scandal stuff matter, at all? To me, it matters as much as any scandal does, these days: that is, not at all.
- Here’s something else I wrote about the subject of scandal, back in March, with bonus caps to better express my exasperation:
- “Scandal-mongering DOESN’T WORK.Cole’s Notes version as to why:1. The media/politico chattering class call EVERYTHING a scandal, and always append “gate” to the end of same, to no discernible effect.
2. The public ALREADY think EVERYONE in politics is a crook, so the breathless revelation that someone involved in politics is a crook ISN’T A REVELATION TO THEM.
3. Joe and Jane Frontporch, the aforementioned public, HAVE HEARD THE HYSTERIA AND HISTRIONICS TOO MANY TIMES, and don’t believe any of it UNTIL THE PERP IS LED AWAY IN AN ORANGE PANTSUIT AND HANDCUFFS.
4. Joe and Jane believe THE REAL SCANDALS are things like the lack of a JOB, or having to lay in a hospital corridor to get HEALTH CARE, or spending BILLIONS ON SECURITY and deranged, lone-wolf fanatics still figure out a way to kill innocent people – those are THE REAL SCANDALS, not someone expensing something by bona fide mistake, or consensual adults with zipper problems.”
- Bottom line: you can’t fabricate a scandal involving Nigel Wright. And, even if I’m wrong, scandals don’t matter anymore.
- Carry on as you were, which you were planning on doing anyhow.