I just wanted to make a short post today to point out a problem in logic that no one seems to be talking about.
The opposition leaders have been rightly doubting the claim that Harper's chief of staff didn't know about the Wright cheque to Duffy. The problem for the Conservatives has been obvious - if Ray Novak was intimately aware of what was going on here, not only does that mean he should be fired (obviously an electorally devastating potential move for the Cons in the middle of an election), but it also broadens the scandal to the point where it because implausible to claim that Harper was out of this loop. The Cons have been laughingly claiming that Novak didn't open the March 23rd email from Nigel Wright to Ben Perrin and Ray Novak. In itself, this is a highly dubious claim becomes, as many have pointed out, Wright was Novak's boss.
But the opposition has failed to asked the right question regarding this email. Let's say, for the sake of argument, that Ray Novak didn't open this email. The email was sent at 11:36 AM, maybe Novak started drinking early that day and lost the next 24 hours in a drunken stupor and failed to return to the email. But there is still a huge problem here. Nigel Wright wrote an email, the entire text of which is these two simple sentences "I think her approach works. I will send my cheque Monday." Here is what the opposition should be pointing out - a simple email like this implies that the receivers understand the context, that is to say that they know what is going on. Nigel Wright saying to his associate "I will send the cheque Monday" implies by its nature that this associate knows what the cheque is and what it is for. Otherwise, the email would have provided this contextual information. In other words simple logic dictates that Novak already knew the context of this email, that he knew of Wright's intention to write a cheque for Duffy. Thus the rather pathetic "Novak didn't open the email" explanation is only coherent if Novak had ignored a whole bunch of other emails of explanation or had stopped listening to his boss at important meetings. There is absolutely no way around it -Ray Novak knew about the cheque. And given that nowhere in the emails do we see an instruction from Wright to insulate the PM from this information, there is NO way that Novak, one of Harper's closest and most intimate advisors would fail to talk to Harper about the cheque.
In other words, logic dictates that the simplicity of Nigel Wright's March 23rd email to Ray Novak, is in fact THE SMOKING GUN of the Duffy affair. This seems to be something that has been missed by the media and the opposition leaders.