Yesterday, as Canada's pain-wracked body politic continued to flinch under the cold kiss of the recessionary scalpel gliding playfully along its abdomen, Stephen Harper thoughtfully administered the most potent anaesthetic known to medical science--his voice.
Yes, I know: many experts consider the profundity and immediacy of Harper's soporific effect to be dangerous, and the use of his speeches to induce unconsciousness is controversial. Nevertheless, his humane and timely intervention means that those lucky enough to have witnessed the entire half-hour speech will spend the recession's projected year-long span in a state of effective coma--very near to clinical death--and will have no memory of this dark time when (and if) they revive.
Until then, their last memory will no doubt be of Stephen Harper desperately trying to arrive at something remotely related to this thing he's heard of--"being funny"-- by cracking wise with a lame joke that staggers pitiably out of Al Martino's killer between-song banter during a particularly uninspired late-50's appearance at a cheap Borscht Belt dive.
By way of explaining how the new Home Renovation Tax Credit works, Harper quipped, "It works like this: if you own a home, and you have a wife, you will probably be doing home renovations this year! Heh, heh [while you can literally hear the crickets]". Fast forward the video to 5:15 to experience this brutal onslaught of hilarity.
Harper reportedly wrote the speech himself. Presumably, the most apparent symptom of his personal touch was that little bit of appropriately-timed misogynist "populism": indeed, it's so important for a nerdy Master of Arts with a resumé bashfully pure of meaningful private sector experience to remind real, red-blooded, obviously heterosexual men--the middle-aged versions of the grammar-school bullies who used to beat him up and steal his lunch money--that he knows perfectly well that only men can own homes and only men renovate them.
Yeah, some people may quibble with that view, but they're probably gay; they might even watch the CBC; they're definitely soft on terrorism.