07 October 2008

Harper and Bennett - opinion

Superficial similarities between prime ministers R.B Bennett, who presided over the Great Depression of the 1930s, and Stephen Harper, have been pointed out.

Both family histories go back to New Brunswick Loyalists; both moved to Calgary to further their Conservative political careers.

Bennett, like Harper, was a loner who centralized power while preferring laissez faire economic policies.
Bennett advocated "The Iron Heel of Ruthlessness" when faced with social unrest and used Section 98 of the Criminal Code to dispense with the presumption of innocence. Harper has demonized anybody who opposes his policies and left a Canadian as the only western national detained by the Bush regime at GITMO.

But there's a difference in timing. Canada had already moved into depression on election day, 28 July 1930, under the unpopular Liberal government of W L Mackenzie King who was criticized for being out of touch with the country. Bennett was leader of the opposition.

Technically Canada is not yet in recession, but it's Harper, as the incumbent Prime Minister, who goes to the polls having led the country into economic decline.

In deciding how to vote next Tuesday ask yourself Ronald Regan's question.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I happen to agree, but am sorry to see this in Anglo-Celtic Connections.