Playing the Indian Card

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Brown Down

So Patrick Brown has resigned.

There is something very wrong here. Only two women have come forward, anonymously, with accusations. No corroborating evidence. On that basis, just about anyone could take just about anyone else out of public life. Or rather, realistically, in the present climate, anyone can take out any man in public life. It is hard to believe no rival party could dig up even two partisans prepared to anonymously lie about their opponent. When such lies never have negative consequences for the accuser.

Perhaps, of course, there is more we have not heard. There is one reason to believe this is not just a political hit job: if it were, it would have been better for the Liberals or NDP to pull it just before the election, as was done to Roy Moore, instead of now, with four months still to go.

But even if the accusations were true, at least from what I have so far seen, Brown does not seem to have been guilty of anything more than misjudgment or social awkwardness. During a drunken party ten years ago, he had a young volunteer down on a bed and was kissing her. But, according to her, he stopped once she made it clear this was not consensual, and never tried anything like it again. Another girl says he asked her for oral sex. She said no. He drove her home. In both cases, he and they were single; no adultery involved. And yes, all were of age.

And there is worse: The Globe and Mail is actually raking Brown over the coals for denying the allegations. How dare he? Of course, all accusations must be true, so long as they are by women against men, and that man is not named Clinton. Global News has called his resignation, which came within hours of the allegations, “tardy.”

It seems we are now into full mass hysteria. Witches are suddenly everywhere. If they deny they are witches, that is proof positive. It only shows how far the rot has gone. In fact, all men are witches.

Perhaps some good will come of this. For one thing, it is so far over the top that it may cause some folks to sober up. For another, I must confess, my first reaction to hearing that Brown had stepped down as Ontario PC leader was a heartfelt prayer of thanks. He had been acting dictatorially in the nominations process, and had abandoned the traditional Tory policies in order to offer about the same platform as the Liberals. It looked like a cynical move: those to the right had nowhere else to go, and he might more easily pick up votes in the centre.

That may be clever politics, but it speaks of someone without principles. It is never a good idea to elect someone without principles to high office.

Now perhaps the party will offer up a better candidate, with time enough to go before the election.

I suspect that is part of why Brown was out so fast. He ran and won as an outsider. He had not made many friends within the party with his strong-arm tactics. He had no ideological base. So he had little personal or ideological support once it looked in the party's interest to dump him. As surely it was. Better to dump him now than risk this controversy getting worse, with less time to find a new leader.

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