Monday, January 19, 2009

If you rub it really hard you can pull out a longer one

Back in the bad old days that the Reformatorys want to return to; taverns were separated into a "Gentlemen's" side and a "Ladies with Escorts Side" and beer was served in glasses with a line near the top so you could be certain that you got your twenty five cents worth. If you wanted to go to a different table you weren't allowed to carry the glass yourself, the waiter had to move your beer for you.

Such was Socred Alberta. Where taverns were thought to be akin to treatment centres for a disease. Sort of like how methadone clinics are looked at today. It wasn't all bad. For five bucks you could cover the little round table with 20 beers to drink before driving home. And the little round tables were always covered with these terry towel covers.

After the covers had been broken in by the cycles of spilt beer and too infrequent washings, the terry towel would fray. This provided bored patrons something to do to pass the time. You could pull at a loose thread. And whoever pulled out the longest one would win. I have heard stories that Klein was a master at this. Perhaps he invented the technique of rubbing the path along which you intended to pull a thread to loosen up the weave. The waiters would always give you grief for this because eventually the tablecloth would be so threadbare that it had to be thrown out.

This reminiscence was brought to mind by the ongoing stream of articles like this one during the Phoney War period we are in while we wait for for Harper to flub his last chance to convince Canadians that he serves them rather than some wacked out dogma. Each one is another thread in the fabric of his leadership. Each one brings him that much closer to being pulled off the table and thrown in the dumpster with the half eaten pickled eggs, potato chip bags and jerky wrappers. Excerpt below. My evidence in bold because bolding this was a lot of fun.

People had a much better idea of where they stood on Harper, with only 24 per cent unsure about his attributes.

Thirty per cent said there isn't anything they like about the prime minister, compared with 15 per cent who said there isn't anything they dislike.

When it came to specifics, eight per cent said they like the fact that he's a strong leader, five per cent said he's honest, four per cent like his policies and four per cent said he gets things done.

But 11 per cent said the didn't like the fact that he breaks promises, eight per cent called him arrogant, six per cent said he's too controlling or power-hungry, and five per cent said they just don't like his attitude.

Harper's scores on all the leading indicators of personal dislike were worse in the latest poll than they were when the same questions were asked in Nov. 2007.

The total numbers of people expressing displeasure at any one trait may be modest, but Nanos said the underlying trend is clear.

"He's taken a personal hit on his image . . . The people that don't like the prime minister are much more passionate than the people who like him."

That means the coming budget is just as much a test for Harper as it is for Ignatieff, said Nanos.

Let's keep on rubbing the tablecloth and see who can pull out the longest thread. Even if you don't pull out the longest one on any particular day, each time you do it Harper is that much closer to being done. As their signals about tax cuts indicate, they will leave lots of loose threads to tug at.

(I think I like this metaphor as a label even better than the one I have been using.)

Stetson tip to Impolitical for finding the article.Recommend this Post

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