It's interesting to note that the Conservatives received a report from the Strategic Counsel that states,
the public views information from Ottawa “through a thick lens of cynicism. They feel that much of what government says is propaganda, intended simply to appeal to the voting public and to spin stories in a positive manner.”
The funny part is that in the same breath the article also attempts to make the case for changing the current comments on Afghanistan - 'fighting terrorism', 'cut and run' and making connections to 9/11 - to more positive language. Essentially, the report argues that Harper and other Conservatives should begin painting the Afghan mission with more positive propaganda with the intention of spinning related stories in favour of the Conservatives' message.
While there is a whole host of reasons as to why the SC is touting this and it only seems all too typical of this government the report has been made public in the midst of Harper already using the changes to the rhetoric in regards to Afghanistan. It also has come at a time when the PMO has reached out to party workers in hopes of finding new ideas.
Lacking new ideas, especially ideas that can be used to sell themselves to the public is the real issue here for Harper. Harper ran out of ideas to work from many moons ago and it has showed for at least six months. Like the latter article comments, "When Stephen Harper doesn't have a script, things get ugly." And they have. Though the real ugliness of the situation is much worse than the PMO having little clue how to govern. The real issue is that Harper and his staff only made plans for one year rather than have a plan for four years. With Harper now looking for new ideas and new rhetoric to use, in an attempt to sway the public, there should be little doubt left to the true agenda of Harper and the Conservatives. This isn't about governing after all. A party looking to govern makes four-year plans and has an entire pool of ideas. Only a party looking for power would create a short-sited agenda in hopes of using any popularity surge to their advantage.