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Oh yeah? Well, I'm going home and taking my football with me

In a move that doubtlessly will be hailed as a strong stand against the "Liberal" media by paranoid conservatives around the country, and in what looks to me most like a fit of pique, Stephen Harper has decided to avoid the national media.

This reminds me very much of a move George Bush tried a couple of years ago when his poll numbers were sagging and he sent the troops, Condoleeza Rice, the ever-photogenic Dick Cheney, and others, out to do interviews for a week or two with local news channels. For the most part, the local reporters, grateful for getting such a "scoop" as an interview with the National Security Advisor or veep, were unable to mount competent or challenging questions and the campaign became a mobile platform for the administration to basically say whatever it wanted.

This is naturally what the Conservatives want, but the critical difference between Harper and Bush is that Bush has advisors that he listens to and instead of announcing to the world in a crybaby voice "I'm not going to talk to you Washington jerks for a while (sniff), because you make baby sad!", he simply changed the method of "message delivery" for a couple of weeks and didn't make a big stink of it. Now Harper has had a public snit and the method of delivery will be the news and not the message he wants to carry. And the news will be - "Stephen Harper is a control freak that cannot tolerate being exposed to the big, scary real world for the length of time it takes to answer a few unscripted questions."

I'm not sure how many rookie mistakes he's going to be allowed, but this one is pretty big.

Whether or not the media is biased toward one party or the other is being discussed elsewhere in the blogosphere as I write and I don't really want to get into that argument. The point that I would like to make is that the Conservatives have very little to gain by pissing off the entire national media. The article linked above is from CTV which, aside from a few reporters, is as close to being a conservative mouthpiece as we are likely to have in this country. Their coverage of Paul Martin and Stephen Harper during the election campaign was instrumental for the Conservatives and necessary for the negative turn of the tide for the Liberals.

If Harper wants to ever become a majority PM, he has to learn the lesson that Liberals learned decades ago; to use the media for what it can do, not treat it like a urinal.

This is going to bite him in the ass. I can hardly wait.

I, for one, am glad the reporting media showed some vestige of integrity - walking out of a press conference, rather than accept being scripted a la Shrubbie's "public addressses".

Do we need any better indication that 'Der Harpenfuehrer' is unfit to lead Canada? Allowing the PMO to script what makes it out to the public has an ominous resemblance to the Neocon US, or, even to Orwell's Oceania.

Why is it our public "representatives", and our public "servants" feel they have to hide things from the Canadian public? Any government doing good work, in the best interests of all Canadians, should have nothing to fear from Canadians knowing what they are doing.

Egads! could it mean they don't have ALL of our best interests at heart? Man, I can't wait for the Revolution...

The similarity to Orwell is quite disturbing - considering that, technically, we are at war with Eastasia.

I, too, support the media in this one. And what I need to do is to make sure that others hear about this and remember it when the Harper calls the election. The man is not fit for office, unless the office is a dictator's.

Harper is a whiner. The "culture of entitlement" that he complained about so loudly is definitely in effect now (i.e. Peter MacKay's comments last weekend re: no ACOA grants for Dartmouth businesses b/c of Mike Savage's comments). Harper is shooting himself in the foot. No media, no attention - bad OR good. If he wants to be PM so bad, he is gonna have to learn how to play with the big boys. Maybe this will help people see that a leader of the official opposition does not a prime minister make.

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