When Alberta MP, Blake Richards started distributing taxpayer funded attack ads in Kingston, Ontario; for our local Conservative candidate Brian Abrams, I was curious to know who Abrams was aligning himself with.
Not that Richards was the only one helping him finance his campaign with our money. Mike Wallace from Burlington also abused the public trust, hoping to do for Brian what he did for Lisa Raitt.
Naturally, this begs the question. If Brian Abrams can steal our tax dollars so easily before he's elected, why would we risk giving him access to the public purse?
It might eliminate the middle man, but during a time of economic uncertainty, do we really want to vote for a guy whose only priority is getting elected, and to hell with our tax dollars? Obviously it's all about him.
But back to Abram's new pal, Blake Richards. I was reading part of his campaign literature, posted by someone who really doesn't like him. I excused their rant, because I've been there myself on occasion, but when I ran down the list of Richard's brags and promises, it was pretty clearly a work of fiction.
However, it was also very clearly Reform Party ideology. Contempt for the courts and judges, the gun registry and the Canadian Wheat Board. Same old, same old.
We also learned that he has been a member of the Reform Party since 1988, back in the day when they were merely a Western protest party, with much of their protest against Quebec, multiculturalism, the gun registry, homosexuals .... or as Stephen Harper so aptly put it in an op-ed piece he wrote back in the day ... their priorities were the 'g' words: 'guns, gays and government grants'.
We have to also remember that most of the Reform Party policy, drafted by Harper was cribbed from the National Citizens Coalition handbook, so you might say, that like his boss; Richards is still working for the NCC.
Below are a few excerpts from Blake Richard's campaign brochure:
Reform Party Roots
Blake has been active in federal politics since joining the Reform Party in 1988, and has served as a Director and Policy Chairman in Wild Rose since 1993. He has been the local Campaign Manager for two federal elections for Myron Thompson as well as two national leadership campaigns.... serving as Constituency Assistant to current Member of Parliament Myron Thompson, for seven years.
Fact or Fiction?
Our Conservative government has accomplished much we can be proud of since taking office.
'We have lowered taxes by reducing the GST ...' - Most economists and our own Parliamentary budget officer, agree that lowering the GST was one of the biggest mistakes this government made. Reducing consumption taxes is not the way to go, and while it did nothing to stimulate the economy, greatly reduced our revenue at a time when we are now running an enormous debt and deficit. At some point it will have to be brought back to the 7% or we are going to be in trouble.
'... created greater accountability and transparency in government...' - This government is the least transparent of any before it. They tightly control the message, and make it difficult for the media to gain access to information. And as to the Accountability Act. It wasn't worth the paper it was written on. Offices have been created and staffed, but they have nothing to do. Whistle blowers are only allowed to whistle at the opposition, the Public Appointments Commission has no commissioner and the Republican who helped them draft the legislation, has himself been deemed one of the worst politicians in the U.S.
'... and reformed the Canadian Wheat Board allowing western farmers to market their own barley....' - Stephen Harper sued us again, in his long term goal to dismantle the Canadian Wheat Board. However, " The Federal Court of Appeal has upheld a lower court ruling that the attempt by the Government of Canada to remove the single desk on barley through regulatory change violated The Canadian Wheat Board Act". I just love when Stephen sues us. He never wins but he sure knows how to waste our tax dollars.
'We have implemented fixed election dates...' - When the ethics committee was getting too close to unearthing the truth in the Conservatives alleged election fraud, Harper shut everything down and broke his own fixed date election law, adding another three hundred million dollars to the ballooning costs of the "In and Out" scandal. Oh yeah, and he's suing us over that too. Man he must hate Canadians.
'... and brought forward bills to modernize the patronage-riddled Senate... despite a minority parliament and fierce opposition from a Senate dominated by Liberal patronage appointees' - Harper appointed 18 new senators, all through patronage. He has also found a way to make the Senate cease to function for anyone but him.
'Blake is committed to holding politicians more accountable by giving citizens the ability to recall promise-breaking politicians from office between elections...' Good to know. So does this mean we can fire Stephen Harper and Jim Flaherty, for starters?
'Blake will fight for an end to judicial activism. It is the role of Parliament to create laws, not the domain of unelected and unaccountable judges....' Oh there's that old Reformer 'it's all the judges' fault.' Sounds like Maurice Vellacott. So Brian Abrams is a lawyer. Does he hate judges too?
'Blake is committed to ending all patronage appointments. Federal government positions should be filled based strictly on merit...' Hmmm ... too bad Harper doesn't share his vision. I've been creating a list of patronage appointments under our current PM, and he may even break Brian Mulroney's record.
'Blake is committed to ending the massive public subsidies that pay political parties $1.87 per vote received in the last general election. Taxpayers should not be forced to support political parties....' Rich. I agree. Taxpayers should not be forced to support political parties.
'Blake is committed to being a good steward of our environment, but believes there must be a balance between environmental sustainability and economic growth ... Blake firmly believes that any action on climate change must be based on a Made In Canada solution, and not on the faulty Kyoto Accord or any international carbon trading scheme which bolsters the economies of other countries at the expense of our own....' - Unfortunately for Blake, the environmental minister disagrees. He has signed on to the U.S. Cap and Trade, which is a fancy term for 'carbon tax'. Poor Blake. The problem is that as much as this government has abandoned any real environmental concerns, George Bush is gone and Obama is committed to going green. So if the Cons want to keep their precious NAFTA afloat, they have no choice but to clean up their act, literally.
'Blake supports immigration based on our economic and labour market needs, rather than some artificial quota.... Blake supports revamping the temporary foreign workers program – making it fair to both employers and employees' – Jason Kenney and Peter Van Loan are making Blake's dreams come true.
The rest is pretty much, as one of his constituents put it: 'FLUFF!'
So what does Brian Abrams stand for? Why did he ask Richards to abuse his mailing privileges to campaign for him in Kingston? Last election Abrams pretty much sprouted party rhetoric. Will he stand up for us or sit down and shut up for Stephen Harper? I think I know.
Back to - The Blake Richards Story: Shameless Self-Promotion