As I opened The Telegram (July 17 edition), my peepers were assailed by yet another vomit-inducing paean of self-congratulation from our very own, one-of-a-kind, Progressive Conservative government.
Instead of simply announcing a program to replace and repair half a dozen of our dangerously dilapidated bridges, a pair of PC politicians took the opportunity to heap praise upon themselves and their party for the enormous act of philanthropy they were about to bestow on us (subject, no doubt, to possible Blue Book revision). You can almost hear the fanfare of trumpets.
In the words of Minister Paul Davis: “We deliver long-term benefits to residents and we also provide economic benefits for local companies and local communities,” and from MHA Eli Cross: “This investment demonstrates our government’s commitment to safe and secure highway infrastructure.”
What generous gifts
Apart from being turned off by the entirely predictable tub-thumping tenor of these platitude-filled proclamations, I am bothered a lot more by their underlying false assumptions:
1) It would, indeed, be a magnificent act of philanthropy if the money was actually coming out of the politicians’ own pockets, but in reality it’s coming out of ours.
Like stage magicians, they hope perhaps, by sleight of hand, to distract us from what’s really happening. But maybe I’m being too hard on them. They’re so accustomed to spouting it on every possible occasion that they might actually be brainwashed enough to believe their own propaganda.
2) In my naiveté I thought it was our government’s duty to keep our bridges and highway infrastructure “safe and secure” at all times.
Instead, we are apparently expected to believe that routine highway
and bridge maintenance is, in the words of Eugene Wigner, “a wonderful gift which we neither understand nor deserve.”
Where, pray tell me, do these charlatans get off?