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Stephen Harper’s Gordon Brown is a Big Mean Bully…

February 23rd, 2010

I never got the criticism: Stephen Harper is a bully. What does that even mean? He steals Stephane Dion’s milk money?  

Stephen Harper is a high achieving individual and as such, is in all probability somewhat difficult: demanding, intense and impatient of fools no doubt. But there is nothing unusual in that. They are all common traits in those who are achievers, they expect much from themselves and no less from the people around them. Furthermore, Harper is a politician. You attack your opponents before they attack you.

Plotting to steal Barack Obama's milk money.

Plotting to steal Barack Obama's milk money.

 That’s how it is played, that’s how it has always been played. From Machiavelli to Chrétien politicians are aggressive with those who want to take their power from them.

Working for high achievers, especially in the political domain, can’t be a picnic but as working for the Prime Minister’s office is itself a high achievement, one would imagine an office filled with aggressive career people who can take crap when it falls on them. If you can’t take the heat, presumably you would get out of the kitchen. And do we really want people in high power, high pressure positions who can’t take it?

People in those high powered positions, however, seem completely unable to take it, at least in present day Britain. It was revealed this week that British Prime Minister Gordon Brown is a big mean bully who treats his staff shabbily. While Downing Street denies this, the National Bullying Helpline has come forward to say they get calls from the Prime Ministers staff. The astounding thing is, this is being treated as “Gordon Brown: bad guy.” They set up a hot-line so 12 year old boys can call and complain “Scott Farcus makes me say uncle,” and the Prime Minister’s staff, the people tasked with running the once great Britain, call and complain about their boss.

I’m trying to imagine Winston Churchill on a bad day. The Luftwaffe bombed the hell out of his city last night, hundreds dead, docks in flames and he’s not happy. “Goddamned Hitler,” he yells. “That Son of a Bitch Goering.” He takes off his bowler hat and throws it at a hat rack, missing the rack but nearly hitting the secretary in charge of purchasing anti-aircraft ammunition.

“He’s a big bully,” she whispers to the secretary responsible for securing bricks to rebuild the hundreds of houses that disappeared the previous night. “I’m going to call the Draco Malfoy hot-line.”

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