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MONDAY, JULY 15, 2019
In the debates, wouldn't it have been neat if someone had said to Harper:


"Stephen, you are wrapped in the devil's arms. You are the blind leading the blind. You read the Bible, don't you? You don't read it enough. Yes, I'm attacking you. And why not? Jesus said he came to bring the sword, not peace. So I'm bringing the sword against you.

We often think of the powerful as good, decent, normal people in their private lives and merely bad in their oppressive public role. But maybe the opposite is true of you. In your public role as autocratic politician and vulgar economist you actually believe that what you're doing is right and good for the country - which is scary enough. You may have horrendous policies of all sorts, but at least you might not be intentionally malevolent in your public life. You're just deluded.

It's in your own private life, rather, that you are not a good Christian. Christ was for the poor against the rich. Better chance of a camel fitting through the eye of a needle than of you or your cronies getting into heaven. I wonder when was the last time you confronted poverty on the streets, face to face. 10, 15 years ago? 20? What did you think of the poor then? What do you think of them now?

After all, how can a Christian, like yourself, favor the rich over the poor? Or do you really believe that the glorious economic fruits of 'attracting investment' through tax cuts will trickle down to the lower- and middle-classes, to the 'hard working Canadian families' you pretend to care so deeply about?

Forget the Bible for a moment. This isn't even good economics. You're clinging to an old and disastrous theory of the market that led to the big economic crash that, as you rightly point out, Canada is recovering from well, precisely because we had in place regulations that you hadn't already dismantled. You wrote your master's thesis on, to simplify the already simplistic idea, how markets are going to do their own thing anyway, so financial policy through government is pointless and therefore markets should be deregulated. However, you're now taking credit for an economic recovery that, had your own policies been more in place, would have been much, much worse.

But to come back to the Bible, since I assume it's your favourite book. Isn't your attitude toward the market - in fearing its reaction to, say, a democratic election, or dangerously high corporate tax rates - what the Bible would call idolatry? Sacrifices have to be made to this easily irritated deity, the market, so it won't be angered and cause, to use one of your favourite phases, 'economic instability'. Jesus didn't have a problem with taxes. Give unto Caesar what is Caesar's and unto God what is God's, he said. What do you have against Caesar that Christ didn't? Anyway, you're Caesar now, not God.

Well, of course you're not God, but you are tempted by Satan. When Jesus was tempted by the devil to, as Northrop Frye put it, 'improve the desert economy' by turning stones into bread, Jesus said that man does not live by bread alone, but by prophecies as well. If your Saviour said this, why your hostility towards culture and the arts, which is our communities' greatest source of progressive, spiritual, prophetic voices? Why your obsession with economic growth - with turning stones into bread - at the expense of living by prophecies as well?

Do you actually believe in the overall benevolence of your economic theories? Do you really believe that lower corporate taxes and less healthcare and education will do us good in the long-term? If you do, spell it all out. To paraphrase one of your only honest statements, What will Canada look like when you get through with it? An apocalyptic wasteland, no doubt, with you and your cronies, the elect, looking down in contempt(!) at those 'left behind'.

But maybe it's not all that bad. Maybe you really are just another skeeming, power-mad politician who's been charmed too much by Machiavelli and Leo Strauss, and who believes that the ruled need to be told a 'noble lie' by the rulers. But if you believe that you must not believe much of anything you say publicly, and are therefore, in fact, a force of public evil even though you are a sincerely faithful Christian.

Of course, your Christianity is the most perverse and corrupted kind, based on personal devotion and seeking elect salvation. The Kingdom of Heaven is not something that happens in the economically prosperous future, or when God hands out redemption like you give hand outs to your rich counterparts. The Kingdom of Heaven is here and now, if we want it to be, if we work together toward, in Pierre Trudeau's famous words, 'a just society'.

But you don't believe in that kind of heaven. You're obviously not a democratic utopian. You believe in the metaphysical, fairytale version of heaven, the one you go to after you die or after Christ returns, that is, if you follow the right rules. This is the legalistic, Old-Testament-at-its-worst kind of Christianity. Your flagrant support for Israel has, I'm guessing, something to do with your faux-conservative, shallow Judeo-Christian world-view, as do your policies towards women, homosexuals, and evolutionary scientists.

I consider myself a Christian, and I've followed its logic all the way through to being an atheist. But I'll still say it: May God have mercy on your soul, Mr. Harper. Because I have a feeling the voters won't."


That's what I'd say to Harper, anyway.
Comments

Hogan

Hogan

2011-06-28 06:37:24

A "strong, stable, majority, Conservative government". Yeesh. God's "elect" elected. This is also why I'm an atheist.

HulkHogan

HulkHogan

2011-07-05 19:27:46

What can be said that has not already been not said? So much so that you had to be the first to comment - why so angry? I find xylophones helpful in such trying times.
REPLIES: Hogan

Hogan

Hogan

2011-07-05 22:02:35

Replying to HulkHogan:
Not sure what you're getting at, Hulk. But I'd like to know. What's up?



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