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Who're ya gonna call? Gritbusters!

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Are taxpayers screaming at you because summit security is costing them $1 billion a day?

Does threatening talk of a Liberal-NDP coalition just refuse to go away? And are ordinary voters telling pollsters they like the idea?

Are you worried what the Auditor General's examination of your MPs' expense accounts might reveal?

Have you just fired a minister because her husband, fresh from wiggling off the hook for drunk driving and drugs possession, was hanging around with unsavoury characters and saying something about his past friendship with you?

Has your fake lake leaked $2 million worth of red ink? Worse, have the Liberals made a funny TV ad about it?

Who's a prime minister gonna call? Why, Gritbusters, of course!

Gritbusters, otherwise known as trusty Horsemen of the RCMP: They're not much for getting their man nowadays, it would seem, unless he's cowering in a corner at an airport or a jail cell. But they sure can be depended upon to always get their Grit if he happens to pose a danger to a Conservative politician anywhere. All you gotta do is pick up the prime ministerial hot line and dial Tory 9-1-1.

So, back in the day when the Horsemen were supposedly mounting a criminal investigation of a leak of income trust information during the 2006 federal election campaign, then RCMP Commissioner Dudley Zaccardelli made sure that the press release named Liberal Finance Minister Ralph Goodale.

The Mounties' toothless complaints commissioner later admitted this was "not in keeping with past practice" -- which I guess in laymen's terms means it was malicious politically motivated horse-pucky without a whiff of justification. But, hey, who knew?

So, reported the Globe and Mail, way back in the mists of forgettable time, "polling numbers from late 2005 and early 2006 show what the complaints commissioner described as a 'dramatic shift' of support from the ruling Liberals to the Conservatives consistent with the timing of the RCMP disclosures on the income trust file."

The rest, as they say, was history. Unfortunately, it was our history.

This service isn't just available to Conservative prime ministers, of course. It's also there for other brands of neo-liberals, say Left Coast Liberals who happen to be having trouble with popular Knee-Dipper premiers.

Alert readers will remember how, back in 1999, the Mounties turned up on NDP Premier Glen Clark's East Vancouver doorstep with a search warrant and a BCTV television crew? (The BCTV reporter insisted he was just playing a hunch. Good one!)

Of course, once it got to court, that one turned out to be a load of hooey too.

Well, here we are, it's June of 2010 and our Conservative prime minister has been having the bad time described above. And what happens?

This just in! Why, the RCMP has "laid out its first allegations of bribery in the sponsorship scandal, stating in a court document that an advertising firm offered kickbacks to long-time bureaucrat Chuck Guité…."

Or so the Globe and Mail reported Tuesday evening. You can expect this story on the paper's front page today, the word "Liberal" prominent in the headline.

By gosh, the information came from "a previously undisclosed search warrant!" No point wondering who did the disclosing, or why now -- a mere decade or so after the events supposedly took place?

Website comments were disconnected by the Globe. "We have closed comments on this story for legal reasons," our supposed national newspaper intoned last night. "We appreciate your understanding."

We may understand it at that. Things must be worse than we'd thought for the prime minister if he's already had to call in the Gritbusters.

One wonders what's expected in the news next week.

This post also appears on David Climenhaga's blog, Alberta Diary.

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