Is saying ‘I’m sorry’ enough?

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More and more Canadians are puzzled, outraged, disgusted, frightened and sorry with how our political system is working today. You would think and hope that individuals who are elected by the people and those who are appointed to our highest political offices would have many good qualities, honesty being one of them.  

Recently, some Senate members were put under the microscope for allegedly flawed expense claims. It was found that Senator Mike Duffy had to repay about $90,000 for his inaccuracies.

As we all know that whole situation seems to have more curves in it than a roller-coaster at Disney World with Duffy screaming all the way to the bottom.

The RCMP is currently investigating whether or not there is some nefarious, criminal activity going on between some in the Prime Minister’s Office and the Upper Chamber.

Then there is Senator Pamela Wallin, who has already paid back $38,000 to the treasury, with more to be paid back in the coming months.

Senator Mac Harb allegedly made mistaken claims to the tune of almost $230,000. He is now fighting back and bringing the issue to the courts.

With so few senators (105), why aren’t all senators being audited?

Where is the Senate committee for accountability hiding? How many others have made erroneous expense claims?

It appears that there is little to no accountability at the Senate level. Why do we continue to waste $100 million annually to keep 105 babbling senators and their assistants in appointed office?  

Why isn’t there a move across this country to abolish Canada’s glorified Upper House? Let’s get with it. Where there’s smoke, there’s fire.

In the past decade or so it has become quite popular for those who have faltered publicly to go on some network news to bare their soul to a craving public hoping that all will be forgiven.

Movie stars, sports heroes, public figures stand there time after time saying, “I’m sorry, I apologize, it was a moment of weakness, I let every one down” and so on.

Just recently Senator Wallin apologized on air to the public for her inaccurate expense claims.

She indicated that she was lax in her responsibility and will repay all inappropriate claims. She had claimed up to $350,000 since being appointed to the Senate. Who’s checking the expense claims for Senators, Huey, Dewey and Louie?     

Does saying I’m sorry cut it for you?

If you say you’re sorry, does that let MHAs, MPs and senators off the hook for allegedly pocketing more than what they should have on their travel expense claims? Didn’t they knowingly do something wrong?

If they repay all of their inaccurate claims, are they then exonerated?  Shouldn’t they feel the sting of the law, or a simple slap on the hand and a huge welcome back with open arms to the upper chamber? Should they even be allowed to sit in the Senate of Canada?

Why aren’t we demanding their resignations? Why should they be allowed to continue to sit in the Senate even if they repay what they owe, as if nothing happened? Why aren’t we demanding a full investigation into the expense claims of all senators, not just four or five? Are these people above the law?

Wouldn’t it be great if our politicians, who are handsomely paid by the taxpayers of Canada, realized that their salaries and benefits come from the hard work of Canadians across the country and who already pay numerous taxes at all levels of government.  Is that asking too much?

I, for one, am just sick of how politicians abuse, use and misuse public funds, as if it’s their money to throw away in asinine ways. It’s difficult to keep up with the negative goings on with our political caretakers, there is so much of it.

Political scandals happen at provincial and federal levels because there is no accountability, just political pretense and bafflegab. Isn’t it time to demand that our politicians put in place harsher rules, regulations and penalties governing the practices of all our politicians? If not, little to nothing will change in our expectations of the people we elect or appoint to higher offices. What a crime.

P.J. Dwyer

Gander

Organizations: Disney World, RCMP, Upper Chamber Senate committee Upper House Senate of Canada

Geographic location: Canada

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  • Ron Tizzard
    June 22, 2013 - 08:20

    Scrap the Senate...we have heavily paid 'elected' overseers already in place to take care of ur national business...who are kept in-line ethically per a pretty efficient process..known as 'ELECTION'. THE PUBLC MAKES THEM...THE PUBLIC CAN DESTROY THEM-POLITICALLY! The Senate is no more than a PERK doled out per a 'BUDDY SYSTEM. If it's determined that that such a level of governance is required...LET SENATORS BE ELECTED...change the name of the group to ' NATIONAL AUDITORS'...which is a practical name to their very practical 'JOB'. If it is deemed that the Senate is not really necessary, I can easily say "Here-Here". It's time that appointed Senators be turned out into the fields...their gardens to graze. Running Canada is a very serious job...let's have serious (accountable) people running it...NOT PEOPLE IN THE 'SETTING-SUN' OF THEIR LIVES...POLITICALLY, AND OTHERWISE.

  • Pierre Neary
    June 21, 2013 - 16:13

    Well said PJ. Maybe more independent candidates needed?