Special Rapporteur
2 min

Giving up the levers

The minister of health sent
out a letter to the provinces, stating that now that the Conservatives have funding in
place for the next 12 years, it’s time to start talking healthcare
reform. Err, okay. If you wanted to talk reform you could have started six
years ago by taking a leadership role with the benchmarks laid out in the 2004
accord that you subsequently ignored. Or you could have used the money your
government laid out on Monday to be the lever to make that reform happen. But no – once again, you are abrogating the federal leadership
position. Who’s looking forward to 12 more years of inaction, enough time for the system to grind into crisis so that you can use
more radical means to reform it? But Stephen Harper would never do that –
except, of course, when he did the very same thing with the immigration and
refugee systems.

New RCMP Commissioner Bob Paulson frankly
discusses problems in the Force, including the issue of officers who believe they're entitled
to misuse power and who are about one or two incidents away from
losing all credibility. Paulson actually
acknowledges the problems and suggests more innovative solutions
to fix some of the current institutional problems. Remember how the last guy, Elliott,
was supposed to be all transformational because he was a career civil servant, not a Mountie (and how that pretty much ended in tears quite literally
for some of the people on the receiving end of his tantrums)? We didn’t hear
honest talk from him, and that could mean that Paulson may be the guy to
bring real change.

Here’s a look back at some of the political dirt-baggery
that happened during the last federal election: people were told
that their polling station had moved. One woman suspected something was up and traced the call back to the local campaign office. The Conservatives now claim it was a database error except, gee, why would she be in the
Conservative database if she intended to vote Liberal? And why was she told the
polling station had moved if it was only a database error?

The UN special rapporteur on the rights of
indigenous persons is deeply troubled by what is happening in places like
Attawapiskat. So what does the minister do? He denounces the special rapporteur, claiming that he’s pulling a publicity stunt. Because talking points make everything better
instead.

A former Conservative staffer denounces the
omnibus crime bill.

And the Human Rights Museum in Winnipeg is beset by further controversy, resignations and delays, and it looks like it may
not open until 2014 at this rate.

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