--> Getting It Right: Betraying Democracy

Thursday, April 21, 2005

Betraying Democracy

After years of hearing about the Federal sponsorship scandal, something has finally shifted in the minds of Canadians.

And they are angry - ear-steaming, fists-clenched furious.

What emerged last week as the publication ban on the Gomery Inquiry was lifted was nothing like Canadians had ever seen before in Federal politics.

The testimony of Jean Brault was damning, detailed and lifted the scandal from the level of a few ad execs lining their pockets by dipping into streams of bribe money flowing into Quebec, and connected the dotted line directly into the Federal Liberal Party. At the inquiry Monday, further testimony drew that line right into the Prime Minister’s Office.

I’m not going to attack the Federal Liberals and I’m not going to analyze how a party sinks so low as to assume that it deserves kick-backs of cash from government programs to build party operations in a certain province. I’m not even going to conjecture how a scam this good was isolated to one province only.

But I do want to ask what this means for us – those average Canadian voters?

Will angry Canadians ever vote again or will they just turn their backs on politics and get on with working hard, raising their families and volunteering in their communities?

Despite the rot that has set in under this Federal Liberal government in Ottawa, most people who stand for office are decent, well-meaning, principled people.

They want to make Canada a better place. Between them, they may differ on the means, and sometimes they differ on the vision, but the vast majority wants to see Canada grow and become a strong, healthy, respected and vibrant nation.

They work very hard, often seven days a week, helping constituents, attending local events, and studying complex public policy issues. It would never occur to most of them to steal taxpayer money to build their election war-chests like this bunch has.

And that is the greatest scandal of all.

For this betrayal, on top of the criminal activity, the Federal Liberals deserve to be punished. They deserve to lose their seats and spend some bench time in opposition purgatory, deciding if this is really the way they want to run a country.

Democracy is the foundation of our society. The Federal Liberals have betrayed our trust and cast a pall on anyone who makes the personal sacrifice to serve.

Remember those guys, the ones that are there to make our country a better place?

So, I know you are mad. Push for an election and then vote for whomever you feel best represents your vision of democracy.

But teach the Federal Liberals a lesson – it will serve as an example for future governments.

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