Tuesday, December 4, 2012
RUSSELL IS JUST THE TIP OF THE ICEBERG
Keith Russell is fast becoming the bad boy of the P.C. Caucus.
Time will tell if he gets pulled into the principal’s office for his latest alleged outburst.
The P.C. MHA for Lake Melville has not carved out a reputation as a distinguished legislator or policy maker. Instead, media reports are painting the freshman member of the House of Assembly to be a bit of an ignoramus.
His latest alleged outburst, swearing at protesters during the Prime Ministers visit to Goose Bay last week.
The member’s public outbursts illustrate an ignorance and distain for people who do not share his point of view, including his constituents. That disdain is not unique to Russell. It seems to run deep through the PC Cabinet and caucus. Russell however, lacks the the skills to lie through his teeth or play the game.
To be honest, if it were not for the public embarrassment, more than one of the Walter Mitty’s of the caucus fantasize that they could be as honest as Russell. Imagine having the freedom to say whatever you want to those annoying people who dare question the government’s approach and wisdom.
Indeed, Russell’s unbridled arrogance says a great deal about the grievous state of democracy in the province. To hold your MHA or a political party accountable for their decisions is tantamount to committing an act of treason. The Kathy knows best approach has created a vacuum in which our democracy resides in stasis.
Russell is the tip of the Progressive Conservative iceberg of disdain for the voters. This is the party that backs Peter “The Deceiver” Penashue. The party that has circumvented the Public Service Commission with thousands of political appointments; that brought us the paradox of the Department of Public Engagement and the medieval Bill 29 ; that is plowing a questionable $10 Billion Muskrat Falls deal down our throats even though the province of Nova Scotia holds the keys to success.
Winning and rewarding your friends is all that matters.
Of course this approach is not purely a Conservative ailment, this province's current official opposition suffers from much the same thing. The public good takes a second seat to nepotism, patronage and maintaining the status quo from the pinata of self-entitlement.
Russell's sin is pealing back the thin veneer that separates reality from the carefully constructed perception.