October 21, 2009

Why can't we shoot straight?

We had a really good week last week highlighting the Reform-Conservatives abuse of handing out cheques for stimulus spending as if it was coming from their own pockets. But let's not spoil it.

The downside of that good week is that some of the leader's policy initiatives got overshadowed. I know that's bound to happen from time-to-time, but the house is back this week. Let's put some of our own policies in the window.

Today was looking like it was going to be one of those days, with the release of our Pink Book on women's issues. Instead, we get this:

Three sombre -looking Liberal staffers stand behind Easter with 8 x 10 photos of Conservative MPs who have, according to Easter, denounced the whole cheque-signing "scandal".

Easter explains how this is must be stopped.

Wouldn't be a bad little stunt if only: in the room right next door the Liberal caucus is launching the Pink Book on women's issues.

Cameras and reporters gathered around Easter.

And although there were other reporters and cameras in the room for the launch, one media event can't outdo the other.

Suddenly, Ignatieff's director of communications, Jill Fairbrother arrives in the scrum and abruptly whisks Easter away.

She didn't look pleased.

And the "stunt" ended awkwardly.

A sign of duelling communications strategies?

Hopefully our message about the Pink Book still gets out. I'd still like to see our Clean Energy policy from last week rehashed somehow since it was lost in all the cheque coverage.


CanadianSense said...

It's all good, the blame is the fault of those evil "Neo-reform-cons".

For the record, Jill Fairbrother says the two events were intended to take place 20 minutes apart, but ended up being at the same time because the Conservatives left from the back door.

BTW I don't agree this was a good week for the Liberal Party. Most Canadians will not buy into the wafer, bodybags, olympic logo, novelty cheque scandal smears regardless if the CBC and Toronto Star are really pushing it.

Tof KW said...

That's right CanadianSense - because taxpayers are stupid and can be bought with their own money. This will all blow over soon and the Liberals will have nothing on Harper. Why, the media are practically dropping the whole matter already...


"[Conservative MP Colin] Mayes says his staff consulted with what he calls the “wrong people” in the party about the cheque and was told that use of the logo was acceptable. ‘We were poorly informed. I did see it and I felt uncomfortable with it but I didn’t take it away,’ he said.” (Vernon Morning Star, October 20, 2009).

"Quand un député signe lui-même des chèques grand format, qu'aucune banque ne va d'ailleurs échanger, on peut toujours croire à l'erreur. Quand 55 le font, selon les calculs des libéraux, on se rapproche d'un système hautement discutable." (Raymond Giroux, Le Soleil, 21 octobre 2009)

“[Conservative MP Dave] Van Kesteren said in retrospect he should have signed the cheque "from the people of Canada'' instead of his name... ‘Not thinking, I simply signed my name at the bottom of the cheque.’” (Conservative MP Dave Van Kesteren, Chatham Daily News, October 21, 2009)

“[Ethics Commissioner Mary Dawson] puts a whole new light on this... Conservatives came as Reformers and Alliance members into Ottawa, hell-bent on stopping the practices of the past, wanting open government, transparent government, and none of the shenanigans of the past. Now they are being investigated by the ethics commissioner." (Tom Clark, CTV Newsnet, October 20, 2009)

"The insidious message of such partisan presentations is that for taxpayers to get access to the benefit of their own taxes, they must vote for the party in power. That is also why it is disturbing to hear that the majority of infrastructure spending is going into Conservative ridings." (Vancouver Sun Editorial, October 21, 2009)

"La distribution partisane de chèques gouvernementaux salit le paysage." (Raymond Giroux, Le Soleil, 21 octobre 2009)

"Clear impression was left that the money that was being delivered into communities and into ridings were somehow delivered by the Conservative Party and not by taxpayers." (Bob Fife, CTV Newsnet, October 20, 2009)

"It's government money, stimulus money, and the cheque should have borne the government of Canada watermark, not the Conservative logo." (L. Ian MacDonald, Montreal Gazette, October 21, 2009)

"Tories took a justifiable hit for party logos on photo-op cheques last week. It was wrong, period... It is not your constituency, it is the constituency that you represent. And it's never mythical government money, it's taxpayers' money (often from future generations via deficits) that is being spent." (Walter Robinson, Ottawa Sun, October 21, 2009)

"We don't want our money used to tell us that government is doing a fine job. We want advertising to give us the information we need to allow us to make that judgment for ourselves." (Vancouver Sun Editorial, October 21, 2009)

CanadianSense said...


Voters are not stupid and they can tell the difference between real cheques and props.

Voters don't believe political parties are interested in giving away their "own" money.

Voters understand political parties love to spend taxpayers money.

Blanket statements don't work when your team is losing support.

A mistake was made a few logos on some novelty cheques.

Jane Taber and CBC have called out the Easter Bunny and the Liberals for being desperate.

4700+ projects with many 1/3 between provincial/municipal gov't.