Last week, the leftish news and commentary web site Straight Goods attacked Canadian Auto Workers Union (CAW) president Buzz Hargrove for getting all snuggly-huggly with Prime Minister Paul Martin. Here's a clip from the critique, co-written by Straight Goods publisher Ish Theilheimer and political economist Mel Watkins:
You don't have to be an NDP supporter to feel disgust and concern. With his campaign, Hargrove is working actively to give the Liberals a renewed majority rather than an NDP-influenced minority.
We believe that minority government is beneficial. The recently-ended session actually produced compromises, political deals and some concrete results in its 18-month existence. Whether you're an NDP supporter, a Liberal or whatever, it's hard to disagree that the NDP's influence in minority pushed the Liberals to the left — just as it did in the 1970s, the last time the NDP had such influence.
It is abundantly clear what voters will get if the Liberals get a new majority. More corruption and arrogance. More tax cuts for the wealthy. Accelerated privatization of health care. Less social spending. Thanks, Buzz.
One day later, the CAW called to say it was not renewing its sponsorship of Straight Goods.
Today, Theilheimer minimized the withdrawal.
"It was not a huge deal,'' he told me. ''They weren't a huge sponsor."
Maybe not, but nothing like sticking in the knife, and then wielding it.
(Tip of the jaunty mohair cap to Brian.)