It seems that every day another loose bolt falls off Andrea Horwath’s election machine, proving yet again that her slate of NDP candidates is comprised of wide-eyed activists, hard-core unionists and situationally-dumb socialists who have no idea how to govern.
All in all, they’re a very sorry collective.
In my home riding of Ottawa Centre, for example, we have Joel Harden, another one of those social warriors running for the NDP who used to jaunt around with green hair and sporting a pair of red Doc Martens, all while trying to “stop an aggressive conservative government from picking on the poor.”
Surely there’s a protest song in there somewhere, but it would have nothing to do with the reality of Ontario where Liberal politics have so out-lefted the left that we are now burdened with billions of dollars of debt and deficit.
The NDP want the red ink to be deeper, of course.
And why not? It’s all they know.
Harden, who wrote his 469-page doctoral thesis extolling the virtues of the radical agenda attached to Venezuelan socialism and the “participatory radicalism” of the Bolivarian Revolution, is running against Liberal Yasir Naqvi, arguably one of the worst attorneys general ever, and Progressive Conservative candidate Colleen McCleery, a medical doctor and management consultant.
Ottawa Centre is riding where conservatism historically comes to die.
There hasn’t been a Tory elected there since its inception in 1968.
Unless there is a smartening of the electorate, Colleen McCleery might just as well wear a sacrificial lamb’s outfit on June 7.
But Joel Harden? Spare the taxpayer from yet another self-righteous lefty who thinks there is no shortage of money and then remind him, as well, that Venezuela is socialist basket case verging on economic collapse.
It is no example of success.
One can almost forgive the social-media crowd who zeroed in on Harden as a commie.
“Dear trolls: sorry to disappoint you, but I am not a communist,” he tweeted. “I’m a democratic socialist, in the tradition of @LibbyDavis, @nikiashton, @SenSanders and @MarshadeCordova.”
Marsha de Cordova, for those who don’t know, is a blind Labour MP in Great Britain who knocked off the Conservative incumbent in 2014.
Harden, whose last job was in research for the Canadian Federation of Students, obviously sees himself as something pretty special.
And a champion, too, for all the undocumented refugees who are breaching our borders by the thousands at unauthorized crossings, and therefore in lock step with his leader who wants to make Ontario a safe zone where the burdensome cost of unbridled social welfare has no ceiling.
“We want to make Ontario a Sanctuary Province. I’m proud of that,” Harden tweeted the same day he denied being a communist. “@AndreaHorwath has led this charge in the face of terrible misogyny, anti-immigration and white supremacist intolerance, especially online. This far-right backlash won’t work; we won’t budge an inch on this. #NowWhatOtt”
Did he miss any of the popular trigger words?
Harden has other over-the-top views, of course. In one essay, he wrote that the Israeli government routinely “assassinates” prominent Palestinian leaders “at will” and undertakes the “targeted killing of innocent civilians (often children),” and questions why the media is not asking why the “U.S. government is so reviled by millions (perhaps billions) the world over.”
Naturally he is also an ardent anti-capitalist and has accused the Ottawa Police Service of having a “constituency of police officers” who “brutalize black and brown people” and do it “with impunity.”
Yes, he’s quite the candidate.
As George Orwell once observed, with time-honoured veracity, “the worst advertisement for socialism is its adherents.”