Thursday, April 3, 2008

Recorded for posterity

The interesting thing about videotape or DVDs is if you're not careful about what's recorded it'll come back to haunt you -- even years later. Erasing it doesn't always work either, there can be ways to recover the information.

Such comeuppance is the case with one Tom Lukiwski (presently a Conservative MP) who made some disparaging remarks about homosexuals way back in 1991. The Saskatchewan NDP says they discovered the tape when they were moving into the Opposition Office at the provincial legislature. Just as disturbing are ethnically insensitive remarks about Roy Romanow, a former Premier of the province. Making the comments -- Brad Wall, the current incumbent. Another politican targeted in the tape was Lynda Haverstock, the onetime Liberal leader in the province as well as a former Lieutenant Governor.

Two bad apples don't necessarily spoil the whole bushel. But this reflects very poorly on the Conservative Party which is trying everything they can to reach out to ethnic and visible minorities. Not very effectively: Using an alternative version of "racial profiling," they've sent out custom greeting cards to certain people who are presumed to be Asian or Jewish (when they're neither -- very smart). Or Christmas cards to Jewish people (also very clever for a party that claims to be "pro-Israel"). Loaded on top of the current immigration kerfuffle, one has to wonder whether the Cons' strategy for the coming election (whenever it is) is to try to neutralize "The Others" and try to win by getting the votes of those who want to take Canada back to the way "things used to be."

Whatever that is supposed to mean. Triangulation has been an effective means of cancelling out the power of the black vote in the States -- thanks to Karl Rove. It won't work here. It's too bad there are no tapes out there (we know of) where Harper or one of his lieutenants uses a certain word to describe black people, the word that got the Democrats in the US the Senate back in 2006.

UPDATE (8:18pm EDT, 0018 GMT Friday): Lukiwski said "I'm sorry." Fine -- but the point is he never should have made the comments in the first place.

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