Remember the Harper years? To ask the average caker the Harper years were an eon of unbridled terror visited on the Canadian people. Images of Nineteen-Eighty Four bounce about the caker’s crippled braincage; they can practically see the 50-foot tall posters bearing Harper’s ugly mug and the words “Big Harper is Watching You” in their mind’s eye as secret police break kneecaps in the street. The reason I’m pissed with this revisionistic bullshit is that there’s plenty of actual real bullshit that Harper actually did. Don’t need to make shit up, guys – we’ve already got plenty of ammo.
One of these shitty activities that Harper actually did was to instigate a long-running fight against veterans culminating in a shameful fight against paying injured troopers a lifelong pension for their troubles. This was called the New Veterans Charter, a hellish proposal that would see 30 to 90% of a wounded trooper’s entitlements lost because reasons. Veterans’ Affairs devolved into an insurance-agency mentality, denying coverage on spurrious grounds. The Tories went so far as to argue that they have no social obligation to help wounded troops, a position which baffles me given that the MPs and lawyers who make these claims live in a country where at least the concept of disability pay exists to repudiate them.
Obviously the troops fought back and won at least some sort of detente in the BC Supreme Court back in June of 2015. The lawsuit looming over the government was to wait until after the election. And when #RealChange promised to reinstate the old pension-for-injury system it sounded like the end of a shitty era in the field of Veterans’ Affairs. Troops who felt like the government no longer had their backs had, at least in theory, reason to hope that the election would present a chance for, you know, real change to a shitty system. Amateur Kent Hehr took over the file from Julian Fantino and proceeded to restart Canada’s relationship with its employees.
Oh wait. He did the exact opposite of that.
Remember that detente we talked about earlier? Yeah, that’s not happening because the Liberals are throwing more bad money after good in a legal case that defies not only their stated goals but also a motion passed unanimously by Parliament which expressly deflates the government’s talking point. This can’t be good for the military’s chronic morale and suicide problem; shockingly merely shouting the word reform into a vapid CBC reporter doesn’t make traumatized people feel any better. Who knew?
The issue obviously wasn’t important enough to be implemented in Morneau’s budget and now apparently is worth fighting in court to prevent. I remind you that Parliament previously declared that it absolutely has an obligation to vets and that #RealChange himself expressly promised action on the file. It also just wasn’t worth trying to peel back the mountains of paperwork incumbent to the aforementioned insurance-agency mentality that apparently still permeates the Ministry. Don Sorochan, the lawyer for the vets, was wise enough to demand that the Liberals put their promises in writing because it’s clear to anyone that their word meant nothing.
So what was worth Justin’s time besides actually making the system work? Why, posing of course! Posing for the Invictus Games, a Olympic-like thing that in no way does anything related to helping wounded vets deal with paperwork and get what they’re actually owed by the government. Obviously Justin’s push-ups at the event is the same thing as doing what he promised! His imaginary mic drop was perfect meme material but sadly does nothing to stop the lawsuit that Justin’s Minister just restarted.
Actually, it’s kind of a solid metaphor for the guy. He’s barely capable of playing make-believe and pretending to resolve problems, far less actually doing the things he promised. But here he is gearning at a photo op so it’s all good you guys!