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Harperland: The Politics of Control Hardcover – Oct 5 2010

4.2 out of 5 stars 21 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Viking; First Edition edition (Oct. 5 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 067006517X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0670065172
  • Product Dimensions: 16.5 x 2.8 x 23.6 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 544 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars 21 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #108,190 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

Review

"Perhaps the first serious attempt to take stock of Stephen Harper's time in power...with commentary and insight from select players [Lawrence Martin] catalogues this tumultuous time from controversy to calamity." - Maclean's

About the Author

Lawrence Martin is a Globe and Mail columnist and author of 10 books, including many critically acclaimed bestsellers including The Presidents and the Prime Ministers, The Red Machine (a history of hockey in the Soviet Union), and a two-volume biography of Jean Chrétien.


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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Lawrence Martin has produced a well researched and insightful look at a relentless, paranoid man who will use any means to achieve his personal goals. He paints a picture of a calculating politician who has undermined his mentors, and manufactured strategies to create one of the most centralized governments Canada has ever seen. Harper campaigned on a platform of "openness and transparency" and has gone on to create perhaps the most closed and opaque government in the history of the country. The most frightening conclusions of the book focus on Harper's distain for the principles and practices of democracy itself. Lawrence portrays a vengeful man who will book no debate, is antagonistic toward any view contrary to his own, and who will use any strategy to forward his personal philosophies, never, at any moment, acknowledging that the opposition represents a constituency of citizens who have a right to be heard and valued.

All this from a writer who is no Liberal hack. No, the Liberal party has felt Lawrence's sting in the past.
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Format: Hardcover
After reading this carefully written and researched chronicle of Harper's first years as our P.M., all I can think of is 'how can he be reined in'? Who is in a position to contain this vindictive, anti-democratic and dangerous man? I tremble for our country.
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Format: Hardcover
The consistently anti-democratic & freedom reducing administrative and policy decisions described in this book are saddening to any who believe that liberalism and responsible government are real and precious political options. This book, and the convincing summary of events and decisions at the end of the book, should cause one to do whatever possible to limit the growth of authoritarian government in Canada. Reading this books gives one a good understanding of the factors which are relevant to ensuring good government in our country.
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Format: Kindle Edition
Reminiscent of books like Bob Woodward’s Plan of Attack, which chronicled in careful detail the rush to war in George W. Bush’s White House, Lawrence Martin’s Harperland: The Politics of Control relies on insider stories to paint a portrait of Canada’s first hard-right Prime Minister.

It’s not a very pretty picture.

Martin makes no pretense of being objective. He clearly believes Stephen Harper to be the most dangerous threat to Canadian democracy in memory, perhaps in history. Martin’s portrayal of the man he calls “a control freak” is disturbing.

The first part of the book details the rise to power of the newly-merged Conservative Party, a re-branding of the right-populist Alliance Party and the wounded remnant of the Progressive Conservative Party. Much of the second half of the book outlines the Harper government’s policy positions and political maneuvers with respect to issues from the Afghanistan war, to the 2008 federal election, to the brazenly tradition-breaking move — many would say a blatantly undemocratic move — to prorogue Parliament rather than face a confidence vote his party would lose.

But the book’s main focus throughout is how the minority Conservative government is the product of the will and vision of one man, Prime Minister Stephen Harper. Martin pulls no punches in depicting a hard-nosed, take-no-prisoners politician, a practical ideologue, a right-wing incrementalist, always looking toward his long-term goals while working toward them step by measured step.

Although there is another, looser side to the guarded and uptight Stephen Harper we all observe in public, only his closest friends ever see it, and that only infrequently.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The more I read about this dictator the more I dislike him.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Just going through this great book for the third time looking for some thing that would even slightly change my mind on how I see this man and as usual could find little or nothing that would change my mind on what I perceive to be Canada's first autocratic PM.Doesn't bode well in my humble opinion for Canadian democracy.Now having read any number of books on the subject I find my original opinion has not changed one iota.Jon
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Format: Paperback
Irrespective of whether you agree with Harper's social-conservative stance or not, this book demonstrates Harper's complete lack of regard for the Canadian public and the democratic process. When his closest advisers discuss how paranoid and vindictive he is and how he's surrounding himself with like-minded people in the PMO/PCO, it's very upsetting. I felt sick for most of this book. Sick and frightened for Canada.
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Format: Hardcover
The book depicts Stephen Harper as being a sociopathic control freak hell bent on destroying the Liberal Party and the Canadian liberal tradition. Canadians need to wake up and see him for who he really is.
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