05.25.2016 10:07 AM

Stephen Harper resigns: a highly-scientific™ poll


43 Comments

  1. billg says:

    As a conservative I am not sad to see him resign, he was a very good PM, but, the last two years were just weird.
    Maybe 8 years, much like a US President, should be the limit.
    Our young PM is finding out how demanding the job is.

  2. Al in Cranbrook says:

    Best Prime Minister in my 61 year lifetime, bar none. Wish him all the best, he deserves it, and I’m certain he will do well.

    The sad part is watching this Liberal government obsess with tearing down or undoing everything Harper accomplished. Pathetic hardly describes this bunch.

    • Art says:

      I would say it’s more like putting everything back the way it was before Harper arrived. You know, back when the country had a surplus and was internationally respected.

      • Richard says:

        I would be inclined to agree with you.

        Undo the worst of Harperism, which brought out the worst in many Canadians (read the comments section of any major news organization’s Facebook posts), and let’s get back to promoting the best of Canada.

      • Al in Cranbrook says:

        Boy, then you must be seriously choked about the $100,000,000 worth of debt this government intends to rack up…with no economic crash or recession in sight like Harper had to face, eh?

        And, yeah, sure. I guess if the international respect of tyrants, dictators and communists is important to you, clearly Harper wouldn’t be your guy.

    • Charlie K says:

      Quelle surprise! Al in Cranbrook is old as hell and Conservative.

      Do you and Earl Cowan also get together every once and a while and gab about “them foreigners ruinin’ our country”?

      Lol.

      Nice to see someone taught you how to use the “interwebs” to spew your misguided and archaic vitriol.

  3. Ted H says:

    I don’t understand, like or have any empathy with the Conservative mindset and I didn’t like the vision of Canada that Stephen Harper shared. That being said, I believe he is basically a quiet and very private man who by temperament was unsuited to being a major public figure. He may not have elbowed anyone physically but he put in place public policy that hurt people in much more serious ways than an inadvertent elbow. He should do well in the USA.

  4. rumleyfips says:

    Not only the worst Prime minister, but also the worst Canadian ever.

    • The Doctor says:

      Oh here we go with HDS. Yes, much worse than Clifford Olson or Paul Bernardo. You’d think the best thing about Harper losing and leaving politics would be that HDS would go away, but apparently it’s incurable. Witness Michael Harris with his unhinged “evil Harper comeback/coup attempt” rant.

    • Scotian says:

      rumleyflips:

      Oh, I hate you for making em agree with The Doctor, but wow, that is deranged. Worst PM ever, OK, worst Canadian politician ever, pushing it but at least a case is makable if clearly debatable, but worst Canadian ever?!? Sorry, that is going WAAAAY too far, even for me, and I am about as anti-Harper as one could be. I was one of the early warners about him well before he got near the PMO, and I was one of the most detailed about why he was such a danger politically speaking, and yes, despite that, I have to say your comment is seriously over the top and arguably deranged. Harper did a lot of damage, and was very unhealthy for the Canadian body politic, which is in part why I say worst Canadian politician ever is at least arguable, but as The Doctor noted there really were worse human beings with Canadian citizenship such as those two he listed, and they are far from the only ones in that level in our history either.

      We need not to forget what Harper was and why he was so bad for the nation as Prime Minister, but we cannot allow ourselves to become unhinged like this either, making into too much of a monster is in its own way no better than allowing his negative aspects and damages to be downplayed/forgotten. Perspective is always important, especially honest and factual perspective, and calling Harper worst Canadian ever clearly shows a lack of perspective.

      The Doctor:

      I only agreed with you because this really was unhinged and being ridiculous, but the idea of HDS being this major thing and some sort of sickness is also something I disagree with. Harper has such profound negative reactions from so many Canadians because of his words and deeds, not because he was a Conservative PM, but because he was so profoundly anti-Canadian values as the clear majority of Canadians define them. His clear hatred for PET being a part of that, not least including his contempt for the Charter of Rights and Freedoms which Trudeau gave us that most believe to be one of our best aspects as a nation and society.

      Harper is also in my view the worst PM in Canadian history because of his profound contempt for basic civic process, his argument in minority that he could keep documents secret from Parliament over the voted stated will of the House of Commons was profoundly anti-Canadian values and process, since the entire legitimacy and power of the federal government is centered in Parliament itself. In other words no minority government has rights that are superceded by the voted will of the majority of the House of Commons, it is that majority vote which is where the true power lies, and Harper argued the opposite, thankfully Milliken was still Speaker then and he threw that argument out. This was in no small part the basis for the contempt of Parliament judgment formally taken against Harper in the end, a distinction no other PM in the history of ALL Parliamentary systems of Westminsterian Parliamentary systems on the planet has managed. THAT is, at least in part, what makes him worst PM ever, and that is not based on sentiment but cold hard facts and reality about who Harper was/is, what kind of PM he was, and the profound contempt he held out basic civic structures of government. Instead of being their defender and protector he was their destroyer.

      • The Doctor says:

        So if you don’t revere and worship Pierre Trudeau, your values are anti-Canadian. Got it.

        • Scotian says:

          Love the Trumpian “logic” you just used to seriously misrepresent what I had said. I said that most Canadians respect the Charter and see it as a good thing, this is well supported by repeated polling surveys from over many years. As well, it is inarguable that Harper had a clear hatred for Pierre Elliot Trudeau and all his works, which since most Canadians overall tend to respect PET for what he did as PM, even those that have issues with some of his decisions, does actually put him and those like him in the minority of what constitutes Canadian values as defined by the actual makeup of the nation of Canada. Again, not the same thing as you tried to claim I was saying. This sort of disingenuous dishonesty is one of the things I find most irritating by partisans/zealots, and clearly you must be one to be making such insulting and clearly false equivalency arguments so as to state a false position as my true position to argue against despite the words right in front of you. Finally, I stated that the PET thing was a PART of what most Canadians consider the definition of Canadian values, things like tolerance, multiculturalism, mutual respect, civility, these too are these values and are all values Harper showed in words and deeds naked contempt for.

          If you are going to play, you seriously need to up your game, because all you showed here was your own shortcomings and limitations if this was the best you could do.

          • Vancouverois says:

            The Doctor is spot on.

            Even if you’re correct that Harper’s views are in the minority, that does not make him anti-Canadian or disloyal. All this ridiculous blather about how Harper was “the worst Canadian” or “anti-Canadian” reveals an offensive and disturbingly totalitarian mindset. That is how totalitarian regimes frame issues, after all: if you don’t agree with them, it isn’t just that you disagree on policy. You are disloyal to the country!

  5. BillBC says:

    It will be sad in a way that the Harper Derangement Syndrome people, such as rumleyfips, above, won’t have Harper to kick around any more. We will all miss the references to him cowering in a closet, etc etc. Now he joins the pantheon of Great Evil dudes, along with Genghis Khan, Ivan the Terrible, and that guy from Germany that we mustn’t mention, for fear of breaking Godwin’s law. Who will the Liberal fanboys love to hate now, I wonder?

    • The Doctor says:

      The Pigs in Orwell’s Animal Farm continued to trot out the specter of the evil Farmer Jones long after he was gone. “Surely you don’t want Farmer Jones back, do you?” And the sheep and the other farm animals would tremble in fear, and all agree that Pigs must remain in charge, because otherwise the evil Farmer Jones would surely return and nobody wanted that.

      That’s basically going to be the Liberal Party’s next federal election campaign.

  6. Charlie K says:

    Suffice it to say I was never a fan of Stephen Harper or his brand of politics.

    Nonetheless, I wish him the best in his post-politics endeavours.

  7. Ronald O'Dowd says:

    Warren,

    Left the CPC in 2009. Met Stephen Harper a few times prior.

    I wish him Good Luck at KKR. Hopefully, he will enjoy the American business work ethic. Lots of pressure there.

  8. Darren H says:

    A great man and a great PM.

  9. Maps Onburt says:

    The left will do their level best to demonize him but PM Trudeau will make him seem like a financial and statesmen genius in retrospect. I think history will be very kind to PM Harper. He did a decent job in very difficult times. He’s a quiet, private Canadian who worked hard at what he believed in. He’ll be remembered as the Canadian Ronald Reagan or Margaret Thatcher (with a boring Canadian style personality). No shame in that.

    • smelter rat says:

      The “left”, what ever that is, does not have to demonize him. He managed to do that all on his own. Worst PM in Canadian history. Only PM in the history of the Commonwealth to be found in contempt of Parliament. Etc etc. When Duffy writes his book, we’ll see that the Emperor really did have no clothes.

  10. Scotian says:

    History will be no kinder to Harper as it will be to George Walker Bush, if for somewhat different reasons. The amount of hagiography already happening in this thread is more than a little sickening to me. Harper was profoundly contemptuous of the most basic of Canadian civic processes and structures, he held Parliament in profound contempt and was in turn held in contempt by Parliament, and contrary to his defenders that was no mere act of partisanship. This is a distinction not only no prior Canadian PM has ever known no PM of ANY Westminsterian Parliament has ever known. This is something not done lightly nor without great cause, and such was the case here. His profound antipathy for the courts is another example. The way he abused Parliamentary processes like prorogument to avoid a Confidence vote he feared he would lose, the way he abused omnibus bills to make massive changes to multiple types of legislation at the same time, the way he gutted any oversight authorities on government, the way he invaded regulatory authorities for partisan purposes, the nuclear regulator being an early example but far from the only one. Etc, Etc, ETC.

    No, history will not be kind to Harper, Harper was profoundly damaging to the way Canada and Canadians govern themselves, and he used profoundly negative political tools to gain and hold power on top of all the rest. This idea that he was a good man and a good/great PM does not hold up to the harsh light of truth/reality, it doesn’t now, and definitely will not down the road either. Harper was something alien to Canadian political history federally, and will be remembered as such, and with good reason.

    I may wish the man well as a person, but I wish him no success in any endeavor where he tries to have any public policy input/impact on our society ever again. As far as I am concerned his record as PM is enough to justify/warrant that. This isn’t that lovely HDS myth in action, this is based on the harsh truth of who Harper was and how he acted with power.

    • billg says:

      Actually, its based on your own opinion, which, is fine.
      I would guess 60% of Canadians feel the same way about Pierre Elliot Trudeau, and, Mulroney, and, Chretien.
      Its like argueing who is the best player of all time, Orr or Gretzky.
      All I know is, Stephen Harper sits 6th on the longest serving Prime Minister list, 3 months shorter the Jean Chretien, and, you dont serve as PM for almost 10 years without being good at what you do.

      • Scotian says:

        billg:

        I always gave Harper credit as a strong tactician, and he had the advantage of a bunch of circumstances (including the de facto alliance with Layton to try and destroy the Liberals federally once and for all) that led to both his minorities, and then the Libs gave him Ignatief as a gift to help him get his majority, but saying that proves he was good at what he did, aside from campaigning for power/office, no, actually that shows little at all. The fact that he was rejected for Justin Trudeau leader of the then THIRD place party of what, 33 seats at dissolution to one of the larger majorities ever in our history, and with I believe the single largest swing in seat count in a single election would tend to seriously undercut your argument here. As to your point about opinions, sorry, I listed factual realities that Harper and his government did, these are not mere opinions like whether he is a good man or not, these are actions that are a part of recorded history, now you may say my view of them is opinion, and that’s fair enough, but I guarantee you, it is the opinion of most people who actually care about process issues more than partisanship for ANY party/leader.

        As well, one can (and I might add could when they lost/left power, not just well after the fact) point to legacies of those like Chretien that last well beyond his tenure, like the reversal on the federal debt, Mulroney on Acid Rain and Apartheid, and of course PET and the Charter and Constitution, where again is Harper’s? The elimination of the penny? Sorry, your argument does not hold up. As to your claim about 60% feeling the same way about PET, Mulroney, and Chretien, that is opinion without any basis for substantiation, whereas one can look at recent and repeat polling data including the last election result onward to find out how Canadians feel about Harper. He held his base, and no more, the rest resoundingly rejected him after only one majority government where he showed how he operated without the restraints imposed by a minority. That proves and backs up my statement far more than yours does you, and btw, I suspect when Harper dies, may that day not be soon, there will not be the national outpouring of grief and respect for him that we saw with PET. PET is truly one of the most beloved figures in Canadian history, not just PMs, and you do yourself a disservice by pretending otherwise. I’ll agree that those that don’t like him tend to really not like him, but they are also clearly a small minority of the entire population, AND are almost totally already within the CPC base.

      • Charlie K says:

        I guess you can call heading a minority government teetering on collapse for 5 years, then proroguing government to avoid a no-confidence motion that would’ve brought the dysfunctional minority government to a sudden end — “being good at what you do”.

        I guess the use of the term “good” here is relative to what you think proper governance is about.

        I’m not saying Harper wasn’t a fighter; just that he was a dirty, dirty fighter. Which goes back to Scotian’s original comments: history will not be kind to Harper in its recollection of his years as PM. He did things that were on a historic level anti-Parliamentary and unjustifiably partisan that damaged the processes and functions of our federal government.

        Yes, he did serve as PM for 9 years and this is something definitely worth the acknowledgement in the pages of Canadian political history. But lets not white-wash the path Harper took in achieving those 9 years.

    • Peter says:

      Harper was profoundly damaging to the way Canada and Canadians govern themselves

      That sounds like the musings of a soi-disantprogressive urban central Canadian who talks only to other urban central Canadians. Not content with simply saying they didn’t like him, they spin Manichean analyses of how he threatened the very fabric of Confederation, if not Western civilization itself. Never mind the man won three elections and was in the running for a fourth, he was un-Canadian and somehow interrupted the natural and proper course of history. History was not amused. It doesn’t seem to register that Harper’s success was built on a widespread reaction to such hubris.

      Also, in light of Mr. Sunny-Hugs’s recent performance, is this really the week to be raising contempt for Parliament?

      • smelter rat says:

        Oh please. get a grip. What did Harper do for anyone who wasn’t an urban central Canadian? Also, what happened last week was as much the fault of the CPC and the NDP as it was JT. Incidentally, his approval rating went up as a result of that non issue.

      • Scotian says:

        Peter:

        Assumes facts not in evidence, to whit, where I am from and who I speak to. Stick a Nova in front of my alias and take of the “n” at the end, and you get my home Province where I was born, have always lived (although I have traveled widely in the past) and plan on dying. Last time I looked, that is not the center of Canada, indeed it is a region of the nation that tends to get ignored and forgotten about by both central and western Canada, especially the latter whenever folks from there say let Quebec go, no hard no foul, without a care in the world for the 10% of Canadians that live on the OTHER side of Quebec! So spare me from your attempts at dismissive ennui, it was poorly done and reflects far more your condescending presumptive nature than mine.

        As to the rest of your “argument” Harper was unCanadian in his approach from his early roots in Reform, for those that paid attention to politics from his earliest appearances it was clear he was different in many important respects, not least being a confirmed Straussian (his Calgary School was a direct offshoot of Leo Strauss’s political theories). His view of the acceptablility of only the “elites” needing to have any say or opinion on government policy issues (as opposed to Manning who was big on participation from the electorate, indeed this was one of the main points of division that caused Harper to split from Reform and Manning in the early 90s and go to the NCC) the use of “the noble lie” so as to gain power and hold it because what matters it to lie to the peons since their opinions matter not in the first place? And finally his clear contempt for the basic structures of how the federal government is designed to work, which he showed most nakedly over the Afghan detainee documents during his minority years where he argued that his minority government’s right to classify information superceeded the will of the voted majority of Parliamentarians in the House of Commons, which is civic perversion. In our system governments get their power from having majorities in the House of Commons by definition, so this is clearly civics 101 stuff, yet Harper made this argument in all seriousness. His contempt for oversight bodies on government once he became government was beyond any prior government’s, and exceptionally offensive given how he used to sing their praises. His complete and again naked contempt for the courts, the Charter, and the Supreme Court itself further shows why Harper is uniquely alien and anti-Canadian. I can include more, and have in other comments in this thread already, but this is enough to make the point and show yours to be nonsensical and unrelated to reality, just as so much of Harper’s own views and policies have shown themselves to be.

        It isn’t because he was “conservative”, indeed, in the Canadian definition of conservative Harper was anything but, his roots were never in Canadian conservativism, they were in some of the ugliest nastiest elements of far right wing American conservativism, not least the works of Leo Strauss, Dick Cheney’s political mentor.

        So you have clearly showed your true nature in all of this, and you have also shown you are more of a soulmate to an anti-Canadian like Harper than you are to any of the rest of us, including real traditional Canadian conservatives , whom I might add make up a good half of my family tree going back to Confederation as both elected and public servants. So you can take your snobbish attitude and, well, you even with your limited capacity, should be able to finish that thought for yourself.

        • The Doctor says:

          So Stephen Harper, who served as a Member of Parliament for 17 years, who served as Leader of Her Majesty’s Loyal Opposition, and who served as Prime Minister for 9 years, was anti-Canadian. Got it.

          • Scotian says:

            *SIGH*

            Yes, he actually was, his time as an MP or even PM does not in any way make him automatically inherently pro-or anti Canadian, no it is his beliefs and his actions that do the defining, not his titles nor his positions/offices. I recommend you learn something about a political philosophy called the Calgary School, and the man whose writings form the core of its beliefs, Leo Strauss. I suggest you look at all his history including when he repeatedly trashed this nation, its culture and social make-up from his Reform days to NCC head onward. I suggest you look at how he actually governed. I do not describe him as such lightly, it is not a claim I make of any prior Conservative PM in our history, indeed any prior PM in our history.

            Harper is a unique case, always has been, and has shown throughout his adult political life a profound contempt not just for our society but the way in which we organize it and govern it. His actions as PM and the way he refused to accept the limitations of things like the Constitution and Charter in his legislation despite the repeated strike-downs by the courts, the way he managed to get held in contempt of Parliament a singular distinction no Commonwealth PM in history ever managed before, the way he showed his contempt for civics 101 stuff like where power and legitimacy comes from in our system ie that Parliament itself is the source and that no minority government has powers beyond that of what the Parliament speaking in a majority vote declares. These all show a profoundly anti-Canadian mindset, not just from mere words but from actions, and it is in their actions that a person most honestly reveals their true natures.

            You need to understand that Harper is something uniquely alien to our political culture, he imported some of the ugliest far right wing tactics and political philosophies from the far right AMERICAN conservative movement (and keep in mind that prior to Harper most Canadian Conservative political actors and their beliefs would have them firmly in the Democratic Party camp in the American context, so that is REALLY reaching into the extremes that Harper did), and did his best to rip up the social contract and fabric of this nation with those tools and replace it with such that case from said sources.

            I don’t particularly care if you and those like you want to keep your Trudeau dislike/hatred, I don’t care if you want to be conservatives for the erst of your lives, but I DO care that you and those like you let your distaste for all things Trudeau and the Libbies blind you to what Harper truly was. I would have been far happier with a PM Manning, sure he would have done things I disagreed with, but I would also have known that he actually believes in Canada, if a conservative view of it, but Harper, no Harper was something else. The warning signs were there from literally his early Reform policy days, let alone his NCC days.

            So no, how long he was an MP nor how long he was a PM has anything to do with proving he was pro or anti Canadian in beliefs and nature, that can only be done by looking at his actual beliefs and the actions he took in support of them, and by that standard, sorry “The Doctor” , but your diagnosis of him is all wrong. Harper was and is profoundly anti-Canadian because that is the choice he made to be and the political philosophy he followed, and his actions as PM only further showed the truth of this. This isn’t about partisanship, this is about who Harper is as a person and the path he chose to walk. Deal with it, because I would but hard cash that history will be in far greater agreement with my perspective on him than yours because my reasons for making my case actually reflect the factual historical record, your, well yours don’t even pass the first logic/smell test. As I said, how long one holds an office says nothing about what a person actually is, just how good a campaigner they are and how well they are able to manipulate imagery, that is after all really what your standard does show, not the true nature of a person in either personal nor political natures.

            On that note, I am done with this thread, there is a limit to what one can do with a closed mind, and yours on this point is clearly so.

          • The Doctor says:

            “I recommend you learn something about. . .”

            “I suggest you look at. . .”

            “You need to understand. . .”

            Well, I just fell off the back of the turnip truck, so I don’t git all of dem highfalutin’ intellectual-type things in yer post.

    • Vancouverois says:

      No, history will not be kind to Harper, Harper was profoundly damaging to the way Canada and Canadians govern themselves,

      As opposed to the Trudeau Liberals, who are rushing to impose a new electoral system that will completely change how our votes are counted, without even holding a referendum?

      It’s pretty damned clear who poses the real threat to democracy in Canada. And it isn’t Harper.

      • smelter rat says:

        Try reading something other than Rebel Media before commenting.

      • Scotian says:

        You did notice that one of the major campaign planks Trudeau ran on was to do exactly that, right? You did notice who won the last election, right? You did understand that meant among other things that he actually has an arguable mandate to do exactly this, as opposed to all those things politicians do once gaining power that they never campaigned on, of which Harper was one of the more prolific (but in fairness far from the only one on that score), right?

        Harper damaged the way we governed ourselves by acting in ways that ran counter to established precedent, the rule of law, and the basic Constitutional fabric that we exist in. They way Trudeau is going about looking at electoral reform is consistent with our system of government. You are not only not making a false equivalency argument here, calling it apples to oranges would be a massive understatement.

        As to this argument about a referendum being needed, again, we live in a representational democratic system, so this is a dodge, not an argument of substance. It is also clear that the threat this change mostly poses is to extremists given that Canadians by and large tend to be mushy centrists of varying types, and therefore an electoral system which more accurately reflects that would preclude the return of someone like a Harper, like the more extreme right, as well as from the more extreme left (although so far Canada has managed to avoid that federally as shown by the history of the federal NDP).

        So you know what I find the clear threat to democracy in Canada? The profound level of ignorance of basic civics I see time and again from those that claim to be informed political observers/actors. From those that pander to the wider ignorance of basic civics in the public to score political points. To those that prefer to deal in dishonesty about such basic matters instead of acting in an honourable manner. From those that make outrageously false equivalency arguments and act like they have any merit at all, as you just did. All democratic systems rely on an informed electorate, so I will always see those that prefer to keep the electorate ignorant/misinformed as a true and real threat to democracy, whatever their political flavour.

        Harper managed what he did because of the profound ignorance and apathy of civics and process in this nation’s citizenry, the one good I am hopeful comes from his tenure in power is that it shakes free that willingness to be so uninformed and indifferent from the wider electorate about such basic civics matters. Alas, things like your false equivalency arguments do not serve to help in that, only to further the road of ignorance and deceit. Not something anyone that truly cares about the importance of a democratic society and system of government over any sense of political partisanship or preference should be willing to do. So where truly do your loyalties lie, to the wider social contract or only your narrow political slice of it?

        That last was a rhetorical question, I’ve read your comments more than enough over the many moons to know that one already.

  11. Mike says:

    Just skimmed the comments but am surprised that a female MP is referred to as ‘a girl’ and not a word is said. She is a woman, not a girl.

  12. John Lawson says:

    Best Conservative PM in living memory. Canadians did well over the past 10 years. The country was united. Mulroney left the country and party completely torched. He created the Bloc and the Reform. PMSH respected the governance of the country. He left Provincial matters to provinces as it should be. Why waste all that time and effort on various national strategies that are not Federal in jurisdiction. ( IE Paul Martin fixing health care for a generation — not ! )The majority time period – 2011-2015 was PMSH weakest tenure of his government. The last campaign was terrible. Senate strategy and appointments unacceptable.

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