Saturday, January 13, 2007

The Conservative Party of Canada: Because.

I've asked the question before, and now so has CTV: "Is it time for the Conservatives to drop the 'Canada's new government' line?" To which, over at Uncommon Truths, Griff has the lack of sense to put fingers to qwerty, only to embarrass himself more than he already has (if that's even possible).

Quoth the Griff:

Seriously. What basis was there to ask this question, if not to cheaply mock the Government's attempts to create a brand or image for itself? Every government is 'guilty' of trying to do so, but it's hardly something you can blame them for. You either create your own image or the media and your opposition will do it for you (something Stockwell Day and Stephen Harper know quite well by now). Sure it might sound kitschy, but that's how slogans work.

Seriously. How dumb do you have to be to have written the above? Unlike Griff, let's actually apply intellect to this and see what pops up.

Griff describes that idiotic CPoC verbiage as a "slogan" that is attempting to establish a "brand" or an "image." But what exactly is it saying? "Canada's New Government." Quite simply, it says nothing. It is utterly vacuous, since it's no more and no less informative than saying, "The Conservative Party of Canada: We won the last election." It would be akin to McDonald's adopting the new commercial slogan, "McDonald's: We sell food for you to eat." In short, as a "brand" or an "image," it is an utter failure, its semantic content being exactly zero.

(Although, to be fair, one can forgive the CPoC for coming up with something so content-free. One can only imagine the hilarity that would have ensued if they'd settled on something like, "Canada's Conservatives: For accountability and integrity." Yes, one can certainly see why they steered clear of that baby.)

And on top of having zero content, it's easy to see how that alleged "slogan" just gets stupider over time. If (God help us all) the Conservatives were to govern Canada for the next 10 years, would they continue to be Canada's "New" Government? At what point is "new" just not "new" anymore? At what point does Parliament lose that new party smell? Really.

Although, now that I think about it, maybe I shouldn't complain. Perhaps that's just the slogan for the CPoC. After all, what better brand for Stephen Harper and his gang of imbecilic hacks and cronies than something which says, effectively, "The Conservative Party of Canada: Jesus Christ! We actually won the last election! Can you believe this? Fucking A!!"

Yes, maybe that is the perfect slogan for the CPoC. Like the old "Seinfeld" TV series, it is a slogan about absolutely nothing. And it doesn't get more appropriate than that, does it?

BY THE WAY, there's a more subtle point here that many people are missing. The CPoC is, of course, welcome to whatever inane, vacuous, infantile slogan it can come up with. But it shouldn't have the right to plaster that slogan anywhere it wants.

At the moment, I'm looking at my 2006 Government of Canada tax package. And, as I give it a cursory inspection, I can see official phrases like "Canada Revenue Agency" and the "Canada" logo and so on. What I do not see (and which most emphatically would not belong anywhere on this document) is any reference to Stephen Harper or the Conservatives or "Canada's New, Dumbass Government." The reason for that is simple.

The Canadian income tax form is not a Conservative document, neither is it a Liberal document, nor any other kind of partisan document. It is a Canadian document and, as such, should not be identified in any way with a particular, political party.

The same could be said of the official website of the Government of Canada, yet when you surf over to the English version here, you find that the CPoC hacks have already been there, since you can clearly read the phrase "CANADA'S NEW GOVERNMENT" in two of the headlines. I find this singularly inappropriate, since the website is supposed to be for all Canadians, and should be free of juvenile, partisan hackery. Sadly, the Conservatives can't help themselves, running around, spraying urine and marking their territory, to the point where they get so carried away that someone finally loses patience and tells them to fuck right off.

So maybe the question shouldn't be "Should the conservatives finally give that idiotic slogan a rest?" Maybe the question should be, "Should the Conservatives stop stamping that idiotic slogan all over official, non-partisan Government of Canada material?"

Sadly, that would take a certain amount of maturity and restraint. And we are talking about the Conservatives here.


Anonymous said...

While it seriously annoys me,
I have to admit it does make sense in that it could be effective for the CPoC to continue to continue this 'distinction' between them and their predecessors.
Some of us have been attempting to have fun with it though.

Anonymous said...

They're not selling "new," they're selling "Government," which you would do too if you had such a tenuous minority hold on power. The slogan encourages thinking — well, unthinking — Canadians to think of, or at least view, the CPoC, as Government, and therefore, take the CPoC seriously.

Anonymous said...

CNG - Compressed Natural Gas

Jeez! Open a window!

catnip said...

Oh. I thought the directive said "Canada's NUDE Government". I was cringing as I waited for the day when Steve and Pete would show up nudie in question period.

What a relief...

Anonymous said...

Catnip, I think you were confusing Canada's New Government with the CPOC's Nude Erection.
(Thanks, Neddie Jingo)