Among the many words of advice my mother gave to me when I was growing up, I remember this gem — “My son,” she would chide me, “self-praise is no recommendation.”
In retrospect, I’m not too sure how much good Mom’s admonishments made on me, but of one thing I’m absolutely positive — no truer words were ever penned than this old adage. And, secondly, the words should be emblazoned on a huge banner in neon lights and hung centre stage in the House of Assembly. Why? Here’s why.
“I am so proud of this government, so proud of the road we are taking …” PC MHA Kevin Parsons.
“I will stand by this premier and this government and defend all the great things we have done …” PC MHA Paul Lane.
“We will provide a ferry service to the people of Bell Island that they have never had in the history of Newfoundland and Labrador …” PC cabinet minister Paul Davis.
“Mr. Speaker, we are builders, we are doers, we have a vision for this place and are committed to economic growth …” PC MHA Steve Kent.
And on and on, ad nauseam. It’s sickening — it would turn your stomach. Enough of this self-praise. Permit me to make a few observations.
First of all, nobody believes a word you’re saying. Indeed, you’re becoming a laughing stock by putting your foot in your mouth in this fashion.
In the second place, your pitiful efforts not only don’t carry any credence but convey exactly the opposite in that you portray, without realizing it, a government floundering in one big mess after another.
Thirdly, every utterance begins with “I,” “We,” etc., as if the world begins and ends with our wonderful MHAs. Such egotism. No wonder you have problems.
Finally, the tenor of all such comments is merely a carbon copy of each other.
Where’s your individuality? Does the position and income of an MHA buy you, lock, stock and barrel? Why do you make yourselves look like another Peter Penashue — reading lines passed down from above?
No indeed, you can praise yourselves to high heaven and, as pointed out, that will not recommend you or your government to the electorate. What then, you may ask, should you do?
May I suggest you ponder the words of another familiar adage, one we have all heard about. Remember this one? “Actions speak louder than words.” Oh, oh, wait now … if you follow that path and we look to your actions, you’ll never get re-elected.
No matter which way you turn, it appears to me, Premier Kathy Dunderdale, that you and your party have a problem. A serious problem.
And the irony of it all is that it’s not a problem brought on by a strong opposition or anything like that. It’s entirely of your own making. Imagine that.