Did Anyone Hear the one about the Welfare Recipient?
Among the highlights from Harper's stand-up tour:
He goes on to describe Canada as "a Northern European welfare state in the worst sense of the term."
He adds: "Canadians make no connection between the fact that they are a Northern European welfare state and the fact that we have very low economic growth, a standard of living substantially lower than yours, a massive brain drain of young professionals to your country, and double the unemployment rate of the United States."
However, he tells his audience not to worry about the country's 1.5 million unemployed.
"They don't feel bad about it themselves, as long as they're receiving generous social assistance and unemployment insurance."
In the speech, Mr. Harper goes on to dismiss bilingualism, among other things:
"The important point is that Canada is not a bilingual country. It is a country with two languages. And there is a big difference."
"The leadership of the Conservative Party was running the largest deficits in Canadian history. They were in favour of gay rights offofficiallyfficially for abortion on demand."
"Canada is ... a troubled country politically, not socially. This is a country that we like to say works in practice but not in theory."
I know comedy is all in the delivery, but that's pretty weak material Harper was working with for a "tongue-in-cheek" speech.
Harper has looked really good this campaign and has been sounding the right messages. But he may go down as one of those people that simply can't live down his past.