Time to ignore Harper’s ‘dog whistle’

By Oscar Wailoo

There was a time when to find out what was going on at home and abroad, you looked to the newspapers.

You couldn’t go wrong with the Globe and Mail or the Star and, if you were really a sophisticate and wanted to speak on a subject with authority, you read the London Times or the New York Times. Get your teeth into those and you knew all the news fit to print.

Well, they still produce the news but whether it’s fit to print is another story. These days they seem to be part of an echo chamber for whatever the political leadership wants us to hear.

When some politician speaks his mind unambiguously, the media gasp in unison and wonder if he should be saying such things for the people to hear. They usually treat it as a gaffe, a blunder, something akin to farting in church.

If the statement is racist or borders on bigotry, it is spoken of as a mere miscue for which he should apologize; after all, he didn’t really mean it.

These days, the media seem to be in the business of giving political advice. The TV is now an employment agency for fixers and marketers whose job is to discuss tactics and to advise politicians on the right strategic approaches to effectively sell the message. Yes, these days we get to know more about “messaging” than getting the straight goods.

Well, I have a message for the media: the political parties already have their paid messengers, spin doctors and jesters. They don’t need you. We need you to let the politicians say exactly as they wish, and run their election campaign on the platform of their choice. Your job is to report the news exactly as it happens and state exactly what politicians say and do without reservation.

All this is a preamble to what I see as the most dangerous development in Canada’s politics since I became a citizen 45 years ago: our prime minister for the past nine years will stop at nothing, including bigotry, to win the next election.

If you want to know what Harper is up to, study Israel. Harper has been the most ardent and unapologetic supporter of this settler nation which has driven the indigenous inhabitants from their land; caged them up in open prisons; flogs them mercilessly when they resist the larceny; continue to steal more land even as Harper gets a piece of occupied ground named after him; and then voted last week to officially confirm that Israel is an apartheid state.

If you want to know Harper’s character and what are his election campaign plans, study Netanyahu’s strategy that won him four elections. Here’s what was written by Neve Gordon, a third generation Israeli political scientist:

  • “On election day, he (Netanyahu) frightened the Jews by declaring that Israel’s Palestinian citizens were rushing to the polls in droves, thus presenting Palestinians who cast votes for their own representatives as an existential threat.”
  • “Pandering and fear mongering together with hatred for Arabs.”
  • “Expect a spate of anti-democratic laws” including “laws that monitor and limit the financing of human rights NGOs, restrict freedom of expression, reduce the authority of the Supreme Court, cancel the official status of Arabic, and, of course, bring to a vote the nation-state law (making Israel a Jewish nation).”

Netanyahu’s winning strategy describes a loathsome racist who used fear and hatred of Arabs to win the election; not even the traditional compliant media can spin this in any other direction. The vote itself describes a racist settler nation driven by a self-created fear of the people on whose land its nation is build, and the need to abuse them in order to keep it.

Netanyahu’s election strategy describes Harper’s minus the need to flog aboriginals on whose land now sits another settler nation called Canada. The media wants him to stop and instead make the economy his platform.

The media gently describes Harper’s pandering to racists in both official languages as “blowing the dog whistle.” I say, let the man blow his whistle, leave the man to his platform of fear and bigotry and let Canadians vote.

That way we will find out exactly what Canada is.

We already know who Harper is.

Oscar Wailoo
Oscar Wailoo