Canada has always been known as a good place to live: a tolderant, prosperous, stable country that treats its citizens fairly and protects the weakest in society. Yet during the past seven years, it has started to change into a harder, more mean-spirited place. What is going on?
According to political scientist Christian Nadeau, this transformation is being engineered by Stephen Harper and the neo-con ideologues around him. The Conservatives have a clear agenda that they are implementing step by step. It is a well-planned and organized attack on justice and democracy as we have understood them to date.
Nadeau looks at how Harper and the Tories are systematically dismantling political, social, and cultural institutions--and with them, traditions and values--that many Canadians hold dear. He analyzes the wide range of actions and decisions that reflect this program: proroguing Parliament, appointing right-leaning judges, promoting a law-and-order agenda, trying to gut the gun registry, preventing the collection of impartial data through the Census, and shutting down social programs.
Rogue in Power is a compelling exploration of how Canada is being refashioned in broad daylight.
CHRISTIAN NADEAU is a professor at Université de Montréal, where he teaches philosophy and political ethics. He has published many articles and books, including Republicanism: History, Theory, and Practice.
"What distinguishes Nadeau from most of Harper's detractors is that he writes from the perspective of a politically engaged philosopher who wants to link his activism with the insights of his academic field."
"Nadeau's Rogue in Power is deeply unsettling on two counts. It demonstrates conclusively how effective Stephen Harper has been in capitalizing on political disaffection and in employing crude, undemocratic methods to nudge Canada in a conservative direction."
"Nadeau does an admirable job of connecting the dots between conservative values and policies across a range of issue areas. He sheds light on a philosophically coherent agenda that has been hiding in plain sight. ... Rogue in Power provides progressives with a very powerful analytical framework for monitoring the Harper government actions going forward. Combining it with an analysis of the interests connected to the Conservative project -- how they interact, reinforce each other, their cumulative impact -- will further deepen awareness and understanding, a necessary precondition to active resistance, which after all is Nadeau's ultimate purpose in writing the book."
"It is clear that Nadeau believes critically thinking democrats will reject the impositional nature of Harper's social conservatism and join those who oppose the Conservative government....[the author reminds us to be cautious, to take a closer look at Stephen Harper and reflect on evidence of threats to our parliamentary democracy or policy changes that represent fundamental breaks from Canadian traditions. In this, [he does his readers a service."