Canadian Idiocracy

There was a time when… People wrote books and movies. Movies with stories, that made you care about whose ass it was and why it was farting. And I believe that time can come again!
– Private Joe Bowers, Idiocracy

Thus it is revealed to me. This election finally makes sense. In 2008 was selected as a guinea pig in a top-secret hibernation programme, and I have been awakened 500 years later. In the preceding half millennium, the relentless forces of cultural evolution have led to a spectacular dumbing down of Canadian society. Back in the late noughties, we believed in things like culture and the arts — we took notes during Corner Gas, held reading groups to discuss Trailer Park Boys. It was a difficult, challenging culture, but it gave value and meaning to our lives. But this… this idiocracy in which we live… you call this a culture?


What is up? Here’s what is up: Laureen Harper, the wife of the Prime Minister of Canada, has told the NAC that she won’t be attending their fall gala on Oct. 4 after all. She wasn’t just going as a guest, SHE WAS THE FREAKING HONOURARY CHAIR. Tony Bennett — Tony Bennett! — is the headliner. The purpose of the gala is to raise money to send kids to music camp and stuff.

Taber’s got more details:

Mrs. Harper is creative and usually rolls up her sleeves and helps with the decorations for the event; she has been photographed in the past wielding welding tools putting together an elaborate chandelier.

“I love working behind the scenes … I love showing up and pointing out to everyone how much work was done on the sets and how hard everyone worked … I think I belong behind the scenes and this year I missed it all,” she said.

They’ll make some excuse, like she has to campaign or something. But everyone knows what this is about. For reasons that completely escape me, her husband has decided to turn this campaign into some sort of whoopie-cushioned assault on art, culture, and taste, like the Conservative victory of 2006 was the Revenge of the Cheddarheads.

Which means his wife, who by all accounts loves doing this sort of thing, and which also happens to be the sort of thing the wives of heads of government do all over the civilized parts of planet Earth, can’t go. Because Canada isn’t a civilized place, or at least it won’t be if Stephen Harper has anything to do with it.

The prime minister’s wife, in a gown, at a gala? Whatever would the rest of the world think of such a country?