Tasha Kheiriddin: O’Toole has final say on progressives storm in a can of beer

When progressives interpret a kind act on the part of one’s spouse as a harbinger of the Handmaid’s Tale, people begin to disconnect

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Poor Erin O’Toole just can’t take a break. On Friday night, the leader of the Conservative Party tweeted a photo of himself wearing a baseball cap and sweaty blue t-shirt, holding a can of Legion Lager, captioned: “Starting the long weekend of the good. foot. Rebecca had a cold one waiting for me after my run. I wish everyone a safe and relaxing long weekend. “

Twitter, start your engines.

As of Tuesday morning, more than 3,000 people had “liked” O’Toole’s post. However, another 1,500 preferred to take the time out of their long weekend to post comments such as:

“Keeping women suppressed and controlled starts at home. Be careful.”

“Misogyny at its best.”

“You are still in the 1950s.”

“Is this part of the ‘Make her more understandable’ campaign because it doesn’t work.”

Sigh.

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To top it off, the French version translated “a cold one” into “une bonne froid”. This sentence caught the eye because it, uh, doesn’t exist in French, outside of Google Translate.

O’Toole’s response was ironic. On Sunday, he tweeted a photo of himself offering his wife a glass of rosé on a silver platter adorned with flowers. This sparked even more “likes” (over 7,000) and comments (over 2,000 at last count), mostly of the type:

“I prefer to have equal pay.”

“Stop embarrassing yourself.”

“It only made your first tweet worse.”

And, my favorite,

“These are NOT roses! These are yellow tulips! For God’s sake! #NeverVoteConservative »

Perhaps this comment, and many others appreciate it, was due to the lack of emphasis on the “e” in “pink”. Scrolling down to see the image in the tweet was apparently too much of an effort.

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Aside from the fact that it’s obvious Twitter is full of anger looking for a place to go, this weekend’s beer storm may merit closer examination of what it reveals about the political process. – and how Twitter crowds can be handled with 11 little words.

At first glance, from a communications standpoint, O’Toole’s tweet misses the mark. It’s unclear who he’s talking to: Anyone who’s fitness conscious enough to go for a run at 9 p.m. on a Friday night probably doesn’t cap him with a beer, and anyone who happily drinks lager at this time of day doesn’t. probably not. sweated through a 5K. If this was a voter targeting exercise, it seems like an epic failure.

That is, until you consider the reference to his wife having a beer waiting for him. This line was not free, but designed to pique a nest of progressives hornets happy to light up the Internet at all times. The theory is this: Cue the tweetstorm. Cue the game. Cue the votes.

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  1. Despite disheartening polls, the Conservatives still have a chance to win the next federal election as NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh struggles to draw the Liberals into his party, writes Shakir Chambers.

    Shakir Chambers: Count Tories As Jagmeet Singh Targets Disgruntled Liberals

  2. Conservative Party of Canada Leader Erin O'Toole speaks during Question Period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, May 5, 2021.

    Michael Taube: How Erin O’Toole and the Conservatives can stop drowning in the polls

O’Toole is appealing not only to a “red meat” base, as his critics argue, but to the larger crowd who believe left-wing voters have gotten to the bottom of things when it comes to feminist issues. When progressives interpret a kind act on the part of one’s spouse as a harbinger of the Handmaid’s Tale, people begin to wonder – and to disconnect.

Then there is hypocrisy. Losing your lunch over O’Toole’s lame tweet as the government of the day is mired in multiple military sex scandals is an extreme lie. It is much more surprising to see Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s staff deflect questions about the Vance affair than to see O’Toole assault the camera with a beer.

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Finally, tweetstorms have another effect: stimulate name recognition. One of O’Toole’s biggest problems is that, unlike Trudeau, he’s not a household name. The Victoria Day antics have earned him modest media coverage, mostly on radio and social channels, when he wouldn’t have otherwise. If no-press-is-bad-press is your school of thought, then O’Toole has come out on top.

In other words, Twitter, you’ve been had. The most important thing to remember is not that a Conservative government would take Canada back to the 1950s. It is that politics has become hyperbolically partisan and painstakingly manipulated. Those who think they are playing the game, too often, are just playing.

The big problems are far from over. Subscribe to the NP Comment newsletter, NP platform.

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