In a letter to The Telegram (Sept. 14) Natural Resources Minister Tom Marshall wrote that he felt “compelled as a member of the Progressive Conservative caucus” to comment on certain points made in an earlier Telegram column.
Well, Mr. Marshall, with all due respect to you, sir, I feel compelled to make a few comments on your letter.
To begin with, you speak, of course, as a member of government and many of your comments almost naturally carry very little weight since you have a very large axe to grind — your very existence, as it were, is at stake. What other choice do you have?
You say Premier Kathy Dunderdale has great “insight, intelligence, and commitment to the principles and values for which she stood.” You are correct in this respect. I believe the premier has enormous leadership potential and means well; as you point out, she has spearheaded much laudable legislation. However, it seems that right from Day 1 she has been caught up in a series of events over which she has not been able to exercise much control, and the result is a government whose image is at rock bottom with the electorate.
You write, “the Premier has secured a safe, reliable and renewable energy generation source for this province.” Ah, but, Mr. Marshall, you have omitted one key ingredient: at what price? You don’t mention this because it’s too frightening to even think about — no wonder you leave it out. This is one of the Achilles heels of your government — on par with Bill 29 — and you know it, Mr. Marshall. This issue has generated intense public debate, but government has chosen to ride roughshod over all reasonable dialogue. God help us all if our worst fears come true.
“We are 100 per cent behind this smart and courageous leader. … We share her vision … need her leadership…”
May I make two observations on this point, Mr. Minister. First of all, what you are saying could be classified as “self-praise” and, as an old adage goes, “self-praise is no recommendation.” Patting yourselves on your own backs carries no weight with anyone. I believe it’s wishful thinking on your part to think otherwise. Secondly, the very words and thoughts convey a feeling of insecurity; a picture of a government which realizes the mess it’s in and is clamouring to find solutions.
In conclusion, Mr. Marshall, if your government was doing such a fantastic job at governing as you purport it to be, there would be no reason for you to write this letter to the editor, would there? Remember, actions speak much louder than words and, that being so, it appears that the writing is on the wall.
Sorry, Mr. Minister.