I don’t talk much about Canadian politics. I mean, except for the obvious stuff (obvious if you have a brain and a heart, like “If the First Nations say No, then DON’T DO IT!”).
But recently I’ve found myself telling people that, if it weren’t for the global pandemic and the idiot south of the border, I think Justin Trudeau would be in a lot more trouble. Granted, this latest scandal over preferential treatment for the WE charity and lucrative talking gigs for family members IS gaining traction, but it was when the Conservative leader Andrew Scheer demanded that Liberals ask for Justin’s resignation or admit they supported corruption, that I felt things had reached a peak.
A Conservative leader outraged about corruption. OK, it’s easy to take the cheap shot and say he’s just angry because he’s not getting a cut, but I think it’s important to point out that I think, if Trudeau DID do something wrong, he should face consequences. And with this coming after SNC Lavallin and that other thing, then, yeah, maybe he should step down.
But since we’re all up in arms about corruption, especially the purer-than-thou Conservatives, let’s ALSO take this opportunity to really make some changes.
First, no MP (Or MLA or whatever) goes from parliament to a job with any for-profit organisation. I mean, that’s just asking for trouble, isn’t it? If people in a position to influence government policy might then go on to work in an industry that they had benefited…well, it’s corruption again, innit? So, they should go work for charities, where their contacts and skills will benefit society at large.
Second, there should be a post parliament wage cap. after all, they get pensions, don’t they? Why do they need multiple-thousand dollar incomes on top of that? We keep being shown budgets on how to get by on minimum wage, so isn’t it a tiny bit hypocritical to need such huge salaries after parliament? And you wouldn’t want people to think you were being paid off for something, would you?
Third, let’s put an end to lobbying. No MP or MLA or secretary or anyone in parliament should receive donations, gifts, cars, teddy bears, flowers or holidays from anyone in a position to gain from parliamentary influence. If the political party can’t fund itself from the generosity of individual members (with an annual donation cap per person too, because a CEO of a company might be a party member too), then they shouldn’t NEED millions from industry. Because, you see, when your party takes large sums from, say, the oil industry, and suddenly your party is not that keen on alternative energy despite the imminent extinction of human life on the planet, people get suspicious.
As Douglas Adams said so well, people are a problem. Democracy is a great idea, and it would work very well if people weren’t always greedy, self-serving, and keen to find loopholes that allow them to do what they want, not what’s best for everyone.
So, Justin, I hope you’re ashamed of yourself, and that you do something positive. Andrew Scheer, it would be nice if you differed from all other Conservatives and actually DID something significant about corruption and greed, instead of just pointing it out in other people. I’ve grown up under Conservative governments in the UK. They lie. They accuse others of minor crimes while they commit robbery in broad daylight. They are champions of injured pride, hot denials, and taking the money. Stand out in the crowd by having actual principles.