Spare a sympathetic thought today for those poor bastards trying to spin the Gurmant Grewal tape fiasco for the Conservatives.

There. That’s enough.

The story that started so promisingly for the Tories (and in fairness, still hasn’t hit the Liberals with its full potential force) is now reeling wildly out of control. Grewal has now released more remixes than Duran Duran, and as of yesterday done his party only one favour: he’s gone to ground.

So has his wife Nina Grewal, whose whereabouts have been just about as difficult to ascertain since this mess began. She’s had nothing to say ever since the nation heard her husband trying to barter her political allegiance, except for a hallway interview with a Toronto Star reporter. She refused to comment on being used as a bargaining chip; said she had nothing to do with the talks; and repeated her support for her husband.

So, okay. You’re an ace Conservative spinner, and you’re handed this mess – along with an invitation to appear on this morning’s The Current on CBC radio. What the hell do you do?

Apparently, you lash out at the media. (Check out the audio clip for part two of the episode.)

I can’t defend the strategy – partly because you rarely want to start pissing matches with people who buy ink by the barrel (or whatever the broadcast equivalent is — watts by the mega?), but mainly because you have to be on solid ground before you do.

It’s pretty rich to slam the CBC for not listening to the Grewals’ side of the story when the Grewals and all associated with them refuse to comment – but the Tory spinner tries.

More than once he starts an insinuation of biased reporting by saying, “I find it interesting that…” – and then has to backtrack as soon as the host pushes back. He finds it interesting that everyone’s piling on the Grewals and nobody’s talking about Dosanjh and Murphy; actually, the CBC and The Current have had plenty to say about both, and rightly so.

The result is a PR trainwreck. Because just an inch under the surface lurks the only message that comes through loud and clear to listeners: “We were so close to power, and we blew it, and we’re really frustrated!

Free advice to the Tories: find another message and another tactic. And pray that something comes out of the ethics commissioner’s investigation.

Carping that your spin has gone hideously, hideously wrong isn’t going to win you any friends.