A preceding article contains two comments from readers whom I regard highly. The contributions were to Overrun with dullards, bums, and hacks… Because they merit close attention, I present them here again for emphasis.
The first was from Rafe Mair:
If it weren’t for Norm and one or two others we would know very little about what my old legal tummy tells me has some jail terms in it. Will Horgan have a no holds barred judicial Inquiry as he should? I doubt it. He’ll see it as a huge distraction even though that’s mostly avoidable with the right commissioner. He can’t be sure that the rot doesn’t go back before 2001.
Because of Campbell’s now embarrassing connection to the Federal Liberals the feds will pull out all the stops, especially fiscal to protect him and then there’s the fear that if The NDP do this to the Liberals, the next right-wing government will retaliate. I have never seen anything in government look and smell like this. Not by a long shot.
There is a good way to get a belly laugh out of this and see how our systems work – everyone go to a Liberal member of parliament and ask if they will demand that Mr. Trudeau authorize a federal investigation?
Tears of laughter have started down my cheeks at the thought of my Liberal lickspittle, Pamela Goldsmith-Jones speaking up on anything if there’s the remotest chance that the guy who gives her $200,000 a year to deliver occasional standard cheques a year to the Lions Bay Village Hall and make sure she attends the largest Remembrance Day service in the riding to lay the uniquitous Federal wreath.
But we’ll do nothing and pretend that we live in a parliamentary democracy where our hardworking federal political toadies stand up bravely for their constituents.
See you at the pig flying races!
The second comes from Scotty on Denman:
I think Rafe is correct that we’ve never seen—“Not by a long shot”—any benchmark or milestone as astounding as BC Liberal perfidy and breach of public trust (hiding from the public ideologically guided sabotage of public enterprise being, after all, the BC Liberals’ abiding calling card). And I do agree a sweeping purge or witch hunt would be an imprudent distraction for Horgan who will be busy enough repairing the damage to our public enterprise, a challenging necessity even without dwelling on who broke it. But I take exception to the idea that Horgan’s worried about what any inquiry into willful BC Liberal dysmanagement might say about NDP governments of the past.
First of all, whatever indiscretions Rafe might recall about Harcourt’s or Glen Clark’s governments, they are almost ridiculously, and certainly vanishingly, tiny in comparison to their BC Liberal successors’. I’m sure, if he wasn’t so busy, Horgan would be happy to invite citizens to make those comparisons—there are so many, and the contrast so sharp, the point is soon made clear without further trouble about it. Any public inquiries will be well attended, as such big draws usually are, and the audience may judge for itself.
Secondly, Horgan holds a position of leadership more magnified than any in generations, what with a partisan (or should I say, “non-partisan”?) accord with assiduously non-ministerial Greens—with their own leader, let’s not forget—and a razor thin parliamentary dynamic that turns on sum-zero-Speaker-relieved calculus. Horgan’ task is to relieve us of the partisan contention of election campaigns, and to lead with relative impartiality for the good of all, the two-party accord and the bubble of parliamentary confidence effectively demanding it. It’s not by shrewd political discernment and assiduousness that the new leader now moves, but rather by the will of the electorate, the necessities of administrative vitality, and the circumstances of the vote and subsequent agreement with the Greens. Making government work is now plainly less partisan and more cooperative—what voters seem to have wanted—and, whether by arm’s-length or intra-bureaucratic inquiry, will appear nothing short of required—as opposed to favouring—as the new government proceeds.
Horgan needs to be more like a leader for all, in the circumstances provided by voters’—all voters’—will, more than any BC Leader since WAC Bennett, and therefore must be less doctrinaire or indebted—or wary—of his socialist forebears. He stands upon the shoulders of many, yes, but now holds new ground over which he is his own man with no overshadowing of NDP governments past.
Nevertheless, I agree that no real impediment exists to finding “the right commissioners” to do the job of any inquiry (which are, by definition, “no holds barred”). I know, it seems refreshingly weird to realize impartiality can be mustered when needed after a BC Liberal reign of cronyism, conflicts of interest, and other breaches of public trust that have become almost ordinary under its defeated regime. Premier Horgan is well advised to avail these opportunities to reinstate ethical oversight while remaining at arm’s-length and undistracted from the challenges of administration he’ll face every single day as a result of BC Liberal poison.
It’s ironic that unwinding the antisocial tentacles of extreme ideology and partisanship ends up having to affect administrative impartiality that might seem at times to absolve—or at least commute—the perfidy of the outgoing culprits. However, in the circumstances the electorate provided, it seems wise to avoid being tempted by partisan vengeance and focus instead on what inquiries are required to put public enterprises back on viable footings. Robespierre would have found it too dull, I’m sure.
But there’s no doubt about the political task at hand: to decease the neo-right saboteurs of democratically sovereign public enterprise. That might sound mighty partisan, but it needn’t be: it is right and proper for political conservatism to fit into the mix, but Horgan—and even ethically minded right-wingers—need to expose, condemn and, finally, terminate the unethical virus of neo-rightism espoused by Gordo’s BC Liberals, all without offending the electorate’s apparent demand for fair and democratic public administration without all the favouritism and corruption and uber-partisanship so unscrupulously adopted by the usurped party of the right.