|Not that one, the other one.|
It's the most pressing question of our time. Bigger than "Who is John Galt?" which is now so ubiquitous that Lululemon put it on a bag.
On a recent post on #CDNPoli, blogger Brian-Michel LaRue, "a 29 year old Canadian-American from Montréal, sometimes journalist, sometimes DJ, professional traveler, quite the amateur photographer and writer," revealed Pierre Poutine as Andrew Prescott, local blogger and deputy campaign manager for Marty Burke in last year's Federal Election.
Well, case closed then.
LaRue had been teasing since late last month that he knew Pierre's true identity, and perhaps its unsurprising given the list of characteristics he offered that he would name Prescott. Now I don't know if it's Prescott, and I don't know if it's not, but the rationale that LaRue offers, aside from his assurances that he's gotten confirmation from key players including a tacit admission from Prescott's lawyer it seems, seems to be a lot of stuff already written in the paper as concrete proof of Prescott's guilt.
To be fair, LaRue may be in earnest, and a recent column by John Ivison of the National Posts states that RackNine owner Matt Meier gave information to Elections Canada that pointed a strong finger of guilt in Prescott's direction. "Mr. Meier said after the robocall misdirecting voters was made on election day last year, he received a call from Andrew Prescott, the deputy campaign manager for the Conservative candidate in Guelph, Marty Burke," the column said. "Mr. Prescott asked Mr. Meier to send out a correction notice, telling people to ignore the initial call."
I guess what I'm saying is that I want a smoking gun. Sure, there's plenty of hearsay and conjecture, and as Lionel Hutz once observed those are types of evidence, but exactly what you'd call guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. Prescott's not doing himself any favours though. Last month, he refused to be interviewed a second time by Elections Canada, and his once highly active blog has been dark since the beginning of February and posts on his Twitter page have been mostly retweets save for a couple of snarky comments during the NDP Leadership convention. He may be well advised to stay quiet, guilty or not, but Prescott was an active political voice on the local scene, which makes the silence even more deafening.
Ultimately though, the identity of Pierre Poutine, like the identity of John Galt, is just a small part of a greater tapestry. Pierre Poutine, a singular individual, did not commit alone the nation-wide effort to defraud voters, and if we do nothing else in the course of this investigation, it should be not to lose ourselves to the romance of unravelling one perpetrator's anonymous identity. In the end, Pierre Poutine, like John Galt, is more about the idea than the man.