Harper has been in power for long time now. One of his main tricks for maintaining power is maintaining the illusion of invulnerability. Every question, every answer follows a script. Access to him is tightly controlled. His MPs and staff are tightly controlled. This creates the illusion of a man and party built like an impregnable fortress. So scripted and rehearsed, he's built the myth of the weird light around him that makes him untouchable.
But the past year, more so than anything period in his tenure, has shown his lack of regal attire.
So I'm annoyed and concerned when I see progressive fellow bloggers and friends talk about RCMP conspiracies to swing the election or some such other thing. Yes, sure, it's possible and likely the Tories will cheat to one degree or another. It's possible they've got enough control over any number of federal departments and agencies to help facilitate cheating (e.g. Elections Canada). But to speak as if all is lost already, as I keep reading and hearing, is to feed the myth that Harper is some kind of god.
Good grief. Stop it right now.
These incompetent numpties don't warrant anywhere near that kind of credit.
But none of that should distract from acknowledging their present disposition, which does not at all point to an election victory. Quite the opposite, in fact. Nor should it distract from a careful consideration of what it would take to cheat on a large enough scale to pull them out of their current mess. I mean, five years of majority and they've made such a big bloody mess of things that their main legacy could actually be an NDP majority and, despite their best efforts at disenfranchisement, a record voter turnout. That's not a party of capability and competence.
In reference to cheating, the more elaborate the scheme, the more people have to be let in. The more civil servants will notice odd requests and memos from their Tory appointed bosses. People leak things. Five or nine years of Tory rule in Ottawa is guaranteed to leave a legion of frustrated and disgruntled staff and bureaucrats in its wake. Whatever it looked like to ardent ReformaTory supporters in Ottawa and elsewhere in 2006 - 2011 who might have been happy to abuse their positions to enable a win, it is not that way now.
Of course, the could still pull off a win. But I think there's a much more plausible case for a loss now. We should recognise that.