Thursday, October 02, 2008

Liberals Play John Howard Card

As the likelihood of an election victory becomes more and more remote, it seems the Liberal party may simply be out to maximize Prime Minister Stephen Harper's embarrassment instead.

In a spot released today, the Liberals needle Harper over the recent mini-scandal emerging over the apparent plagiarism of a speech made by then-Australian Prime Minister supporting the Iraq War.

The ad asserts that, while Canadians were proud of Jean Chretien's refusal to enter Iraq with the United States -- an attitude hardly universal amongst Canadians -- Harper was "ashamed of his country".

The ad then claims that John Howard was the Iraq War's biggest supporter -- which is actually untrue, but the Liberals likely feel reluctant to admit that British Labour Prime Minster Tony Blair was actually the Iraq War's biggest supporter (aside, naturally, from George W Bush).

Over an image of burning oil wells and the sound of marching boots, the ad notes that Australian troops were in Iraq for five years. The ad asserts that Harper "parroted his words and would have followed him to Iraq," before asking "Do you really want more of this?"

This spot comes as the desperation in the Liberal campaign becomes ever-more apparent. Having given up marketing their Green Shift plan or branding Stephane Dion as a leader, the Liberals have instead settled for counter-branding Stephen Harper as a member of some vast right-wing conspiracy -- oddly overlooking the support of the Iraq war by the American Democratic Party, a party that the Liberals have historically sought to emulate and has enjoyed association with.

Which is certainly nothing surprising. No party wants to address the logical shortcomings of its own claims -- least of all a party that has given up on winning, and is instead content to merely embarrass its opposition.

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