Double Standards …
When it comes to politics, people and especially the media, can be very strange. For sure, many have double standards. For example, when Premier Wynne appointed an expert to shake up the health care system in Ontario for $427,551 per year, no one heard a whimper. When Premier Ford appoints Dr. Rueben Devlin to a similar position as head of the Premier’s Council on improving health care, at a salary of $348,000, all hell breaks loose.
I also have a number of Canadian friends who believe Donald Trump can do no wrong. When vulgar and sexist tapes from his campaign bus hit the networks, it was no big deal and serious allegations against Trump, related to adult entertainers like Stormy Daniels, were not seen to be of serious consequence. And yet, as news resurfaces of an alleged groping incident of 18 years ago, involving Justin Trudeau, these same folks are shouting from the roof tops for his scalp.
Now, don’t get me wrong. Politicians give us plenty of reasons to jump all over them. But it is a sad fact that the trend in today’s society is to look for the bad and the ugly, especially in people and political parties with whom we generally disagree. Digging up dirt is becoming a national pastime. In my view however, we often do so at the expense of real issues that make a difference to the lives of millions of people.
With full and sincere respect to the seriousness of the allegation that Justin Trudeau groped a reporter 18 years ago, I am frankly more concerned about his ability to steer Canada through the trade war we are engaged in with the United States. This is the most serious issue facing Canada in decades, one which could have a devastating effect on our economy. It is an issue from which the Prime Minister should not be distracted and it is the issue on which his legacy should be judged.
As for the appointment of Rueben Devlin, if one wants to be negative, they will find something to be negative about. After all, he is a prominent Conservative which by definition, makes this a patronage appointment. As well, some will be critical of the salary he is going to earn.
I for one, have never been opposed to patronage appointments, as long as the person who is appointed is qualified to do the job. It is perfectly understandable for a government, of any stripe, to appoint people to positions who share similar values and objectives. Can you imagine anyone in the private sector hiring someone who did not share their vision and goals? I also have no problem with people being paid what they are worth.
To me, the appointment of Rueben Devlin to head up the Premier’s Council on improving health care in Ontario is entirely appropriate. He is highly regarded in the health-care field and has served in a number of key health-related positions including as CEO of Humber River Hospital, an institution known for its innovative approach to health care. He is also close to the Premier and to Health Minister Christine Elliott which means he will be listened to.
Devlin’s credentials should be far more important and of far more interest, than the negative coverage his appointment has received. Effective health care services for its citizens, is one of the highest priorities for any government. Both Christine Elliott and Rueben Devlin are well qualified and, in my view, we are fortunate to have them leading health care reform, in their respective positions. Indeed, I have much more confidence that hospital care issues in Muskoka will be properly addressed because people of this calibre are at the helm of decision making at the Provincial level, since that is where the real clout is.
I find it discouraging that many of us are unable to rise above our partisan beliefs when it comes to acknowledging good decisions, no matter where they come from. As well, it seems sad that we appear much more inclined to impugn the character and reputation of those we do not otherwise agree with than of those we do. The media is especially good at this.
I understand that politics is a blood sport but there was a time when people of all political stripes, including elected politicians, had respect for one another and an ability to support good ideas, no matter where they came from. Sadly, those days appear to be gone and we are poorer for it.
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