And of all his enablers, the most culpable are the strategists, the ones who fashioned his image as the defender of the little guy, the suburban strivers, against the downtown elites, with their degrees and their symphonies—the ones who turnedThe "playbook for the right generally in this country" arrived, I believe, when the Mike Harris Conservatives in Ontario brought up advisers from the Republican ranks in the U.S. and then established its enemies list—welfare recipients, teachers and labour unionists among them.
a bundle of inchoate resentments into Ford Nation. Sound familiar? It is the same condescending populism, the same aggressively dumb, harshly divisive message that has become the playbook for the right generally in this country, in all its contempt for learning, its disdain for facts, its disrespect of convention and debasing of standards.
It has now insinuated itself into the federal Conservatives under Stephen Harper, leader of a government that daily illustrates "its contempt for learning, its disdain for facts." Whether it's the nation's police chiefs on the gun registry, medical professionals on injection clinics, or climate scientists on global warming, their learning and their facts are rejected in favour of dogma.
Enlightened Republicans are beginning to tire of this noxious strain in their party. Will Canada's conservatives follow suit? Or will they allow it to erode the standards of Canadian conservatism as it has eroded the standards of American conservatism?