Not a good week for the Harper Machine, so, in keeping with the Rove playbook, watch for the complaints about media bias. I can practically hear the clutch grinding as they switch gears from swaggering bullies to whining victims.
This hot-oil massage from The Star should figure prominently.
Once again, though, let's keep our eyes on the ball. There's a certain narrative we're being sold by both major parties, ably assisted by the corporate media. No surprise there, since they're all funded by the same bunch.
So what we need to ask ourselves is: why is so much effort devoted to the propagation of that narrative? Who benefits? Whose interests are being served?
That narrative, of course, is based on the assumption that there are only two possible choices, and that assumption's also behind the manufactured drama behind the putative Iggy-Harpo debate. As much fun as it's been to mock Harper for wimping out of that, we can't lose sight of the fact that said narrative keeps the focus off other things – in particular, the sustained attack on public sphere, progressive legislation, and civil society that's been going on for three decades under both Liberal and Conservative governments. Over the years, the avenues for effective public policy have been systematically closed off by impenetrable agreements, negotiated in secret by unaccountable officials without even a pretence of transparency. If we're going to talk about coalitions, then let's put the focus where it belongs – the Liberal/Conservative coalition which, for years, has been doing the bidding of international capital and the owner / manager / investor class.
More than anything else, that puts all the puffery we've heard about free trade, deficit hysteria, entitlements, and nanny states in the right perspective, exposing it as just so much kabuki theatre. More than coalition fearmongering, more than debates, more than astroturfing, more than income-splitting, more than F-35s, more than anything else, they want to keep the focus off that.
Just watch. Whole bunch of new shiny objects this week.