Wednesday, October 1, 2008

The Commonwealth for Bush Club

As this article notes Howard and Harper were soul mates. Lippert was smart enough to know that Harper would find Howard's speech perfectly fitting. Both fit the same mould of supporting the Bush PNAC agenda and serving as junior partners to the US. Both also had the same right wing agenda and used the clever campaign tactics noted by Flanagan.

Harper, Howard had close ties - Federal Election - Harper, Howard had close ties
October 01, 2008 Richard BrennanOttawa Bureau
OTTAWA–The Harper government was only months olds when Australian Prime Minister John Howard was the first foreign leader invited to address Parliament in 2006.
The invitation reflected the close ties between Howard's government and Prime Minister Stephen Harper's. Howard headed Australia's Liberal party, which despite its name, is "small-c" conservative.
As Harper was putting together a campaign strategy, his advisers drew strength from Howard's four straight election wins, former Harper campaign manager and adviser Tom Flanagan wrote in his 2007 book, Harper's Team.
"Howard has appealed to what he dubbed the `battlers,' families struggling to raise their children on modest incomes – working hard, paying their taxes, playing by the rules, to paraphrase rhetoric that we would use in the coming (2006) election," Flanagan wrote.
Patrick Muttart, now Harper's deputy chief of staff, and Flanagan arranged meetings between Harper and Howard, who shared favourable views of the Iraq war, and opposition to the Kyoto Protocol. "In effect, Patrick set out to recast our appeal in terms familiar to John Howard's battlers," wrote Flanagan.
Australia's national newspaper, The Australian, in May 2006 described Harper's campaign "as being straight from Howard's Australian election handbook in almost every way." Howard was one of the closest allies of U.S. President George W. Bush's administration, with Australia joining the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq.
When Harper visited Australia in 2007 for an Asia-Pacific Economic Co-operation (APEC) summit, he became the first Canadian prime minister to address the country's parliament, where he lauded Australia's contribution to the war on terrorism.
In Australia's election last November, Labour Leader Kevin Rudd swept to power. Howard lost his own seat in parliament.

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