Bin lazily following the court "battle" over Mike Duffy and his discretionary use of public funds. This is obviously one of those dull news items which is destined to fill the media outlets free space for months to come while they wait for a building to fall or a bomb to explode. Probably, like most, I find it abhorrent that we should find ourselves even considering "examining the rules" for Senators. Until now, of course, it appears there weren't any! Aaand. you can actually kind of see the logic behind this libertarian system of fiduciary control, when you view it in the right light, and with the right glasses.
First of all, the position of Senator comes with an implicit recognition that the individual so benighted has a long history of honest and excellent political behavior behind him/her. It is an honor to be appointed to the Senate of Canada which few of us will ever achieve! Yes, an honor! And with the honor comes an acknowledgment that the newly-hatched Senator can obviously be trusted to conduct him/herself in a manner which befits the position. Not using public moneys for personal purposes would serve as an example here.
Now, it appears from Christy Blatchfords recent colorful piece in the National Posthttp://news.nationalpost.com/full-comment/christie-blatchford-was-that-wrong-mike-duffy-applies-george-costanza-defence-at-trial that Mr Duffy will be chiefly relying on the defence of "was that wrong?", pleading ignorance of precisely what he could and could not get away with as a Senator of this country. What he would be doing by following this approach is in effect, bashing Canadian taxpayers over the head with the very trust invested in him. And quite likely, it will work well and effectively to his advantage. After all, how can you prosecute a man for breaking rules which do not exist? This will be a difficult problem for the prosecution with which to wrestle.
So while we are doing our best to fill out our tax forms properly and honestly this year, while hearing a commentator in another room drone on and on about the rights and privileges of Canadas Senators, lets all take a moment to consider what can be done to slow the imbalance being created by the absurdity of having public officials....oops! Did I infer that others are doing it too? Sorry 'bout that! Public official(s) using public funds, above and beyond the generous salaries they already enjoy, for purely personal purposes.
And so, here follow a few ideas, lame and perhaps otherwise. Accept or reject them as you see fit. Firstly, Could we perhaps start a Mike Duffy award and hand it to the most glaring example of flagrant abuse of the public trust each year? The trophy could come with a forty-foot tall piggy plush toy or somesuch, and a lifetime supply of chocolate-covered, honey-dipped, sugar-flavored bottles of the finest champagne.
Another thing we could do which might serve the purpose of reminding our officials of the limits of their mandates would be to apply a picture of the Senator to all of our currency in place of the Queen. This would serve to stifle some of the opposition to the Monarchy and also be a sort of private joke amongst Canadians, providing a little much-needed levity to the situation in which we find ourselves, having to pay taxes to a body of folks who have officially thrown off the irksome yoke of having to justify their dispersal of public funds.
Also, large, bold statues of Mike could be placed at strategic points across the country, alone with the inscription: Great Canadian Achiever or the like. The purpose behind all of this public posturing on Mr Duffys behalf would be to acknowledge that Mike is really the perfect Ottawa bureaucrat! Unrestrained by normal protocol, serving his country by stimulating the economy by redirecting its hard-won tax dollars back into the private sector rather than simply allowing them to go to waste in some dank hospital ward or the like, he is in fact, setting an example for every public employee in the country! A sort of a modern Henry Kelsey, boldly going where many still fear to tread, he has opened the door to a new era of public unaccountability. And maybe, after all, in the end, does it really matter so verry much whether Mike wasted a few thousand on this or that instead of allowing some other governing body the privilege?