Stephen Harper: Where We Are

Stephen Harper was prime minister of Canada from 2006 to 2015. Jay routinely referred to him as “the Leader of the West.” Harper has just published a new book, “Right Here, Right Now: Politics and Leadership in the Age of Disruption.” Its themes are populism, conservatism, and current passions. Harper came of age with Reagan and Thatcher (and so did Jay). This is a different moment, though, and Harper has thought deeply about it. Jay talks with him about all this, plus some other issues—including U.S. perceptions of Canada, the nature of Pierre Trudeau, and Harper’s remarkable encounter with Putin. Stephen Harper is not to be missed: not only a superb practitioner of politics (witness his decade-long premiership) but also a superb analyst of politics.

Subscribe to Q & A, Hosted by Jay Nordlinger in Apple Podcasts (and leave a 5-star review, please!), or by RSS feed. For all our podcasts in one place, subscribe to the Ricochet Audio Network Superfeed in Apple Podcasts or by RSS feed.

Please Support Our Sponsor!


Now become a Ricochet member for only $5.00 a month! Join and see what you’ve been missing.

There are 7 comments.

Become a member to join the conversation. Or sign in if you're already a member.
  1. Texmoor Coolidge

    Great interview! The encounter with Putin was very interesting. I would love to know the contrast between how Harper and how Obama greeted him during that meeting.

    • #1
  2. ToryWarWriter Thatcher

    Great to see our PM get some good press.  

    Also nice to hear one of the great leaders of the world get whats going on as opposed to those who would prefer to hold there hands over there heads saying ‘Nananananana’.

    • #2
  3. George Townsend Inactive
    George Townsend

    Texmoor (View Comment):

    Great interview! The encounter with Putin was very interesting. I would love to know the contrast between how Harper and how Obama greeted him during that meeting.

    This all is true. We can also  contrast the encounter, and the way Harper dealt with it, with the way Trump dealt with his encounter.

    • #3
  4. @TistelTech Inactive

    Nice interview with an unexpected guest.  

    To find the poster child of the unintended consequences of socialism look no further than the Maritimes (mentioned in the podcast).  Its the region of Canada to the east of Quebec that connects with the Atlantic.  Think the state of Maine and head north east till you hit water.  Lovely people, lovely place.  The heart and soul of which has been destroyed by multiple generations of people living off “the dole.”  A significant proportion of the population works through the summer and then in the fall, once enough hours are logged, asks to be laid off so they can go on unemployment (the winter is a time of: pot, beer, hockey and video games).  I was born and raised there and after uni I was working year round and paying the requisite taxes.  When a friend was mentioning how he was looking forward to “joining team Canada” (another euphemism for the dole) and I made some snide remark about getting a job.  Confused, and not sensing my resentment, he said: “don’t worry, I have enough hours.”  Don’t get me wrong, I believe in the social safety net (the notion that people who are in a rough patch should not starve or freeze to death, have a path out etc), but, there something so galling about a perfectly healthy person not being even slightly embarrassed about taking government handouts.  Money is just this magical stuff that Ottawa prints so you can sort on the couch.  Its particularly infuriating if you know the history of the region.  There is no notion of personal pride or ambition, no notion of a national economy.  Grrr.  *sigh*. I need to learn to meditate.  

    I an effort to try to not get attacked (mostly, but, not 100% joking) on some future visit, I will say this: if you like the outdoors for hunting, fishing and great seafood (or Anne of Green Gables) its a great place.  

    • #4
  5. OccupantCDN Coolidge

    Thanks Jay, for the great interview, well done!

    I have been a fan of Stephan Harper going back nearly 2 decades now. I was aware of him back in the Reform Party days with Preston Manning. (I live in Calgary, and at one time lived in his riding) I hope he has a long career as an author, and international public policy critic.

    • #5
  6. ToryWarWriter Thatcher

    It does look like the Dole culture is starting to change in the Maritimes.  The large companies are starting to say no to the layoffs requests.  

    A friend of mine worked on the EI tribunal for a while.  He has great stories involving maritimers.  

    • #6
  7. Charlotte Member

    I love him. Among other virtues, he just seems so…normal.

    • #7