Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Harper and Harris: Trashing Public Institutions

Accidental Deliberations makes a startling point about the Harper government.

In the destruction of "PromArt", a program to promote Canadian artists abroad, the Conservative government used a couple of egregious examples of use of the PromArt money - a leftist journalist they themselves sent to Cuba, a band called "Holy Fuck", etc. etc.

Is this really an accident? Did they simply screw up their talking points as The Galloping Beaver suggests?

I doubt it. I've lived in Ontario my entire life and that includes the Harris years. Let me explain how Conservative governments (even the ones that call themselves "PC") work. They hate public institutions. After all, how can anyone make money off of a public institution except by taking reasonable pay for hard work? They especially hate when public institutions work really well because this makes their hatred for public institutions look truly irrational.

In order to destroy public institutions, as Harris and Eves tried with Ontario's public education system, they first have to make them fail. They have to "create a crisis". They have to antagonize the employees, underfund the infrastructure, take out ads in the paper and on television and do everything they can to vilify the public institution. Harris did exactly that. And when he'd done it, he thought he could tear it down and build private schools everywhere. He failed in the end. Maybe people saw through him. Maybe they didn't. But he failed and we still have an excellent public education system here in Ontario because the Liberals fixed it.

That's what I think Harper and his boys did with PromArt. They're pandering to their social conservative base. They intentionally used the PromArt money to send the crudest and most left wing people they could find to other countries. Then they wave their hands in the air as if this were a Muppet News Flash about Old McDonald's eleven cows escaping. Don't be surprised if you find the PromArt budget included pro-abortion, pro-gay rights singers, artists and journalists as well.

The whole point was to take control, make it ridiculous and then destroy it. I've seen it before. I'll see it again.

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1 comment:

TnT said...

wow. You have an even bigger tin hat than me.

But it certainly isn't something I would be surprised at.