July 13, 2007

Strategic Counsel to Harper, "Curb Cynicism Through Better Propaganda"

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.

See Also:

Cut and Run from Cut and Run

Enhancing poppy fields, eradicating the lives of women and children

Canadians See 'Unacceptably' High Casualties In Afghanistan: POLL

Memo to Harper: To change the perception, just change the words


Alison said...

"The report to Foreign Affairs was prepared last month by The Strategic Counsel."

Which puts the timing of his new *softer* approach right on message.

Kyle said...

You are correct. Thanks for pointing that out. If anything, it only makes it all seem worse because they are attempting to do it.

wilson said...

'...The report is based on 14 focus-group discussions of two hours each, conducted in seven locations across Canada LAST NOVEMBER.'

8 months ago. there were focus groups. media re-reports today.

Quotes from people smarter than me...

"If a free society cannot help the many who are poor, it cannot save the few who are rich" ~ JFK

"Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter. " ~ Martin Luther King Jr.

"Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety. " ~ Benjamin Franklin

"First it is necessary to stand on your own two feet. But the minute a man finds himself in that position, the next thing he should do is reach out his arms. " ~ Kristin Hunter

"When you're a mayor and you have a problem you blame the provincial government. If you are provincial government and you have a problem you blame the federal government. We don't blame the Queen any more, so once in a while we might blame the Americans." ~ Jean Chretien

"Which is ideology? Which not? You shall know them by their assertion of truth, their contempt for considered reflection, and their fear of debate." ~ John Ralston Saul

"It is undoubtedly easier to believe in absolutes, follow blindly, mouth received wisdom. But that is self-betrayal." ~ John Ralston Saul

"Everybody dies, Tracey. Someone's carrying a bullet for you right now, doesn't even know it. The trick is to die of old age before it finds you." ~ Cpt. Malcolm Reynolds (Firefly, Episode 12)