Stephen Harper’s radio ads create a trailer-park English Canadian Joual
Does Prime Minister Stephen Harper think Canadians are a bunch of sloppy-tongued, monster truck-driving, Tim Horton’s eating, vacuous hosers? ”˜Cause the “ordinary Canadians” represented on his “Dion Tax Trick” quintuplet of radio ads make the McKenzie brothers sound, like, really smart, eh?
A voice we’re introduced to as Sue says:
“Well, we goddanother politician here, with another trick up his sleeve, don’ we?... Yup. He’s been goin’ around the country making billions of dollars in spending promises. This [carbon] tax is the only way he’s gonna be able to pay for it all. I’m tellin’ ya, it’s here to stay....Ya! Gimme a break!”
Is she pretending to be one of those “ordinary” Canadians we’re always hearing about, but never meet? (I mean, aren’t we all extraordinary?) She sounds like a This Hour Has 22 Minutes version of a blond, minivan-driving Edmonton soccer mom/RCMP wife. The difference is, THH22M is satirical. The Dion tax-trick ads are not.
In another ad, a faux call-in radio show, you can almost feel the actors method-act their way into their “working Canadian” roles, and slur through their double-doubles. The “callers” say:
“Dion flatly admits he can’t set priorities. What kind a’ leader is that?”
First he says no to a carbon tax, then he’s all for it. Come on! The guy’s all over the map!”
“Dion’s now calling his carbon tax a ”˜work in progress.’ Shouldn’t he have figured it out before saying he was going to do it?”
Other priceless quotes include:
“The carbon tax has gotta go.”
I’ll tell you what I can’t afford: Stephane Dion.”
“”˜Got a family, a house, all these expenses. With this tax I’m gonna have to pay more for gas, electricity, food, everything!...Gimme a break!”
No, bad radio copy ad writer. Give us a break!
Or at least have the courage to do a genuine, “ordinary” Canadian accent: Newfie, of Newfoundland; low German, of Manitoba; or the snippy five-generations-from England Victoria-based ex-pat. Or, if you really wanted to prove your balls, how about new Canadian accents from Mumbai, Hong Kong, or Nairobi?
It all begs the question every federal party is panting after right now: who is an ordinary Canadian, and how can we secure their votes?
For a good time, watch for more faux-working class appeals in the upcoming election campaign.