A New Hope - Scandle, Gomery and BeyondWith the sponsorship scandal rocking the nation - there is now hope. Hope that Canadians will take a hard look at the Liberal Party and the mealy mouthed homilies they muttered for years. Even the most cynical or naive among us, cannot say that the Liberal party which claims to "care" and "represent Canadian values" has not severely compromised itself by illustrating systemic corruption, deciet and woeful arrogance. Those who once claimed that even if a program was horribly ineffective "it sent the right message", must now ask themselves whether an ineffective program here which pilfered their money and which ultimately has sent one message - that the Liberal Party believes the people of Canada are guilable sheep whom can be bought off and brainwashed with their own money.
The Gomery Inquiry has begun to probe the seedy underbelly of Canadian politics and revealed palm greasing, wardheeling, graft, corruption and criminality that one normally associates with the politics of more than a hundred years past, or in a more modern context it alludes the imagery of organized crime. Fake invoices, and brown envelopes full of money being paid in order to recieve favours, and phone calls demanding money to "protect the contract" as it were. These despicable practices should shock and dismay every honest, hardworking Canadian taxpayer.
This is not a partisan issue, this is an ethical issue. Its an issue which calls into question the lawfulness, the integrity and virtue of the Liberal Party of Canada as an entity. Systematic corruption and participating in the defrauding of Canadian taxpayers, is not solely an issue for Conservatives to gnash their teeth about. This is a non-partisan issue. If you've voted Liberal in the past - your party has betrayed you. If your political inclinations lean to the left, examine your options in other parties that can accomodate you in that regard. Whatever you ideology the public purse is a fundamental trust - a trust that has been violated.
This violation of our trust as voters, taxpayers and Canadians cannot be tolerated. For too long we've warily trod down the path and mumurred something vaguely distaneful of the integrity of politicians as a class. There must be a higher standard, faith in government, democracy and elected office demands it - not only demands it, but requires it. There has to be a renewal of the relationship between the body politic and the citizenry for disgust and voter apathy have frayed that relationship.
In the wave of angry that rolls forwards from the details of Brault's testimony and the grissly portrayal of the complete malfeasance of people who claimed "they were going to clean up Ottawa", we must not only punish the offenders - but engage Canadians in dialogue to see good goverance emblazoned as a fundamental of our political process and strive for the reforms and an openness and transparancy which will prevent this from ever happening again.
As Canadians we need to demand better of our government, as Conservatives we need to prepare our selves to do better as a government. We need to not only to win the trust to govern, but if and when we do so to act in such a fashion as to difuse the dissallusion of so many Canadians and restore faith in the democratic process.