The people of this province have no choice but to take it personally, more so than any other province. On the heels of the federal government’s decision to remove certain SAR capabilities, Peter Mackay has the audacity and the outright ignorance to inflict upon Newfoundlanders and Labradorians an insult of major proportions in his caviler and personal use of our SAR resources. This is Canada, not some puppet, third world, military regime that uses the peoples’ resources as they see fit. While the amount of money involved may not be considered excessive when one contemplates just how much money governments routinely waste, it’s not really the money that’s the point. The principle of the act is bigger than that. My only concern thus far, is that I may not yet be clear enough in being true to the title of my ‘Clearly Stated’ column.
Mackay must resign. He has lost all credibility. He should receive no benefit of doubt. He has no place in the offices of stewardship that have been granted to him. Even if he feels he can make a plausible argument that, as the country’s Defense Minister, he was participating in a planned SARS exercise, there is no disputing the fact that he was picked up from a fishing trip. His argument is not only weak, it’s pathetic, if he truly believes we should accept it as logical; as credible. He insults us twice. First, by deciding to use a SAR helicopter for his personal use, and second, by being less than honourable in trying to sell us a story that is indefensible. The Defense Minister has no defense. He should hereafter always be known as the Minister of Defenseless.
Here is another reason why he must be forced to resign. You have to ask yourself, at what point will you finally tire of elected officials granting themselves privileges we never intended to have them bestow upon themselves? Other individuals have done far worse, to be sure. Entire governments have been more wasteful, and considered themselves more entitled. Mackay’s idiocy should be our line in the sand; the straw that broke our back. It should be right now, at this time, that we come together and collectively say, enough is enough! We elect you with good intentions. We expect our taxes to be distributed equitably and in good faith. You are supposed to be good stewards and represent our collective interests. And any failure on your part has a price. We’re not just complaining anymore. You will be asked to leave.
There is nothing partisan about this. If I had to describe my political ideology, I’d say I’m a social conservative. We have no such party that totally represents my view. That’s OK. I’m not here to complain about that. But if these pompous, self-righteous users don’t leave when they are asked, we should go to the next level. Start an ‘Occupy Peter Mackay’s House’ movement. March on Parliament. Write, write, write, and don’t give up. It’s hard to stay focused on that as a goal when all we’re trying to do is get from one day to the next. But the Peter Mackays of the world count on your apathy, and depend on your apathy, and, if the truth be known, will still be there tomorrow, because of our apathy.
Let’s start out easy. Try clipping out this column and send one copy to your MP, and one to Mackay. I can’t promise anything, but it’s at least a start. If we’re not even going to do that much, maybe we oughta just give the guy his own helicopter and call it a day. But don’t forget to bow when he passes by.