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Monday, May 11, 2009

Not Quite Shovel Ready

As much as I hate to publicly admit it, during some of my weaker moments I’ve actually wondered if I have what it takes to enter the political arena.

To tell the truth I’ve actually been asked several times to consider exactly that. The suggestion has come both from serious proponents and those with less than complimentary opinions who have challenged me to either put up or shut up.

Without exception my answer has been a resounding no.

It’s not that I wouldn’t love to do more for the people with whom I share this corner of our planet but I question if I’m cut out for it.

Of course I do what I can to bring Newfoundland and Labrador’s issues to the public eye on my own web site and through other publications kind enough to provide a home to my ramblings but I wonder if that’s really enough.

In recent years I’ve also spent time quietly offering my assistance to various grassroots organizations, both political and social, as well as making my thoughts clearly understood by those elected officials willing to listen, as well as those who would prefer not. But to actually make a living as a politician – well it’s just something that remains a foreign concept to me.

I’ve always thought my biggest concern about taking something like that on was whether or not I actually have the leathery hide necessary to tackle the job. Putting that aside for a moment I also have to ask myself what more I could possibly say or do about the issues facing this place if I suddenly found myself on the election trail.

Don’t get me wrong, I have a very clear position on many of the problems facing Newfoundland and Labrador but that’s actually the crux of my problem isn’t it.

I mean what if I had to concern myself, not only with the problems at hand, but also with protecting my political future, both inside a mainstream party and with the voting public?

What if my party decided, as political parties are wont to do, that the needs of a more vote rich region of the Country should take priority over those of the people whom I profess to represent? How would I handle that?

What if I had to put the interests of my party on an equal or perhaps even greater footing than those of my constituents?

Could I do it? Would I even want to?

Under those circumstances I’m willing to bet I’d find myself suffering from a very terminal case of political suicide in record time.

Let’s take the economic turmoil we’re all facing these days. If I was on the election trail do I really hear myself saying things like…

“If elected I’ll see to it that each of your concerns are fully understood and acted upon in Ottawa.”

“Our party (pick party of choice) under (pick leader of choice) will see to it that the needs of Newfoundland and Labrador are not forgotten or callously swept aside during these hard economic times.”

“It won’t be easy but with your help and support we’ll make it happen together.”

“The former government (pick one) has painted our Province and our nation into a corner. For far too long they’ve ignored the concerns of the average working man and woman in Newfoundland and Labrador and right across this great Country. Once elected our party will see to it that this never happens again, no sir, not on our watch”

“I promise that if elected, within 30 days of entering office, our leader will form an expert committee to review the critical issues facing us today and we will bring forward a clear, concise and actionable list of recommendations to address the issues in a timely manner”

“At the end of the day we will ensure that there is a roof over the head and food on the table of every Newfoundlander and Labradorian.”

“We’ll see to it that there are shovels in the ground so every decent and hard working Newfoundlander and Labradorian in this great Province can hold their head up high without having to worry about how they’ll pay their bills or if they’ll lose their home.”

“On that you can depend.”

No, I honestly can’t see myself doing that.

Upon reflection, perhaps it isn’t my lack of a thick skin that’s kept me out of the political arena for so long. More likely it’s my extremely low tolerance for the utter B.S. demanded of those who choose that path.

I guess I’ll just keep on doing what I do and leave the politics to those better suited to the role.

One thought does occur to me though. Perhaps I’ll take what few savings I have and invest them in a good shovel factory someplace. In more ways than one the demand for shovels seems to be growing with each passing day.


Anonymous said...

Patriot - I would love to see you enter Federal Politics to represent our province, but I have serious doubts that you would even get to first base, that being having your nomination papers signed by any of the leaders of of the 3 political parties in Ottawa.

Federal politics work for the economic good of the Center of the country and not for the province of Newfoundland and Labrador.

Given your record Patriot of putting forth issues which have kept our province in a backwards mode would preclude you, I think, from ever getting to that first base, that being having your nomination papers signed in order for you to run.

That is unfortunate for the electorate of the province of Nefoundland and Labrador, since you possess the ability to tell our story to the rest of Canada.

Ussr said...

Well your writitngs would be missed if you did go.Besides Patriot from what I've read in the last six or seven years ,you would make a Horrible liar.

Opps I ment politican, or was that ,???????

naw forget it, Im confused again !!! They're so hard to tell apart these days.

" Republic Of "


Anonymous said...

Patriot - Please put it to the test.

Choose the Federal Party you would most like to represent, then ask the leader of that party if he would sign your nomination papers, but before doing so introduce him to your blog and advise him that your strategy will not change.

After all Patriot you do not want any surprises from the leader of your chosen party advising you that he didn't know your political agenda, that being you will be working for the betterment of Newfoundland and Labrador, instead of Central Canada.

Patriot said...

No test needed there Anon. I agree 100%. Unfettered honesty has no accepted place in our political system and on the occassion when some independent thinker manages to sneak in he or she isn't long being tossed back out.

It's a sad situation we've gotten ourselves into I'm afraid.

Anonymous said...

Patriot - For the province of Newfoundland and Labrador, the time is now 60 years overdue that the undemocratic Canadian Federal Political System which now exists should be exposed for what it is worth and for the damage it has caused to our province of Newfoundland and Labrador.

Patriot - Why do you not lead the way, as others in the past have done, to expose the wrongs of the other undemocratic systems which existed in our political sphere, such as the undemocratic practice of not allowing women the right to vote until a woman named Agnes McPhail and others took up the cause and perservered until it was changed.

I hereby nominate you Patriot to expose the rot in the Canadian Political System as it relates to the unfair and unequal state of affairs which exists in the province of Newfoundland and Labrador when its economic conditions are compared to any of the other 9 provinces . Those condition which I refer to exist because we have very little say in the Canadian Parliament with our 7 Seats in the Canadian Parliament which has a total of 308 seats.

Yes Patriot and that is despite the superior geographic location of the province of Newfoundland and Labrador and its great superior natural resource base.

Some of the provinces in the Canadian Federation have excelled economically, without any natural resource base at all, primarily because they are "vote" resource rich and that has enabled them to expoit the natural resources of a provine like Newfoundland and Labrador to grow their economies.

It must stop and we must sow the seed to stop it, so therefore I nominate you to be that politician to do it. It will be a struggle, but it has to be done.

That means somebody will have to take the bull by the horns to effect the changes needed.

Do you get my drift Patriot?

Patriot said...

Yes, I get your meaning Anon 4:23 and one day I hope that person will be found, but I fear it isn't me. In my own way I can only hope to sow the seeds and help clear the path. History is a long and patient master and nothing won easy is ever of any great value.

We must be patient. It's our place, all of us, to keep the vision alive, grow the desire in our own people and prepare for the future. Once we have taken up the task in earnest I have no doubt the right individual will present him or herself and we will all know it.

Anonymous said...

The only party that we need today is the Newfoundland and Labrador Party.

I dont want to take Newfoundland and Labrador out of Canada, I want Canada out of Newfoundland and Labrador.

Is that too much too ask for.Free the homeland, send us all home.:)