The Fountain Pen, Guelph's On-Line News

Different Sandbox, More Bad Behaviour: Adult Supervision Require

Web posted on May 25, 2016

A Curmudgeon's View

By Les Enekes

It would seem that my comments about the sandbox at One Carden Street may have been just a bit overblown in comparison to the goings on in Ottawa. At least things downtown did not get physical. It is a sad commentary that our elected officials at all levels feel that they can act like children and get away with it. Politicians of all levels and political persuasions must be held to a much higher standard. They are not supposed to make things this easy for political pundits, comedians and curmudgeons. The bigger the sandbox....

The video coverage of the event involving Young Trudeau did not provide good angles to show what really happened. The fact is that he crossed the floor of the House of Commons and physical contact occurred between Young Trudeau and members of the opposition. There have been various interpretations of what occurred, and of course the usual exaggerations by all concerned.

Never in my wildest dreams thought that this sort of thing would ever happen in our House of Commons. We see news reports of politicians behaving badly and having fisticuffs in other countries and laugh about it. This is not what is expected of a world leader. I would love know some of the comments made behind closed doors in the White House or the Kremlin. No amount of spin is going to undo the negative coverage out there, no amount of apologizing is going to make this go away. Based on how dirty our election campaigns have become, you can be sure that this will be dredged up next time around. The ad writers are already salivating. In one moment of frustration all those selfies were undone. What little credibility Young Trudeau had out there in some circles is gone. Even with his greatest supporters, doubts might be creeping into their thoughts. Definitely not one of Young Trudeau's better weeks. This week should be a lot better with another visit out of the country, this time to the G7 summit in Japan. So much for our "sunny ways." I am wondering how many more bad weeks there will be before our next election.

I wonder what the writers of the "He's just not ready" ads are thinking. It certainly looks like they got it right. How many voters out there are thinking they should have paid more attention?

Let's not forget that this involved limiting the debate on assisted dying legislation. This is one subject where the debate must be allowed to continue until all points of view have been expressed. Some say it goes too far, others say not far enough. The government has since backed down on limiting the debate. Unless they get the legislation right, it will probably be appealed back to the Supreme Court by one side or the other.

Another promise that bit the dust was the treatment of our veterans. Great promises were made about restoring proper benefits to disabled veterans. Instead, court cases started under the previous government to restore benefits are being allowed to continue. This is just utterly shameful.

I seem to recall another promise about door to door mail delivery. Instead, they are doing a review of Canada Post. We all know that government reviews never go well for the needs of the public.

Wasn't there a promise made to make the House of Commons a more civil place and to do away with the shenanigans of the past?

The list of broken promises is just piling up, and soon it will outnumber the kept promises. A song by Queen seems very appropriate. It occurs to me that the promises broken are the one's that should be honoured, while many of the promises they are going ahead with should never see the light of day. By the way, does anyone remember all the promises made?

There was also the report about his wife Sophie asking for more staff because of her workload. Hey, that's her decision. We do not have an official First Lady like they have down south. Therefore, no extra staff or money.

Usually I try to inject some humour or light hearted comments into my columns, but this time around I just did not feel it appropriate. Childish behaviour has always been a part of politics, and to a certain point it is a harmless way of letting of a little steam. As with all things there is a fine line that should never be crossed.

The crash of EgyptAir flight 804 distracted the world media from our tempest in a teapot. As with every crash there are as many theories as there are aviation analysts showing up on television. Most speculation seems to lean towards terrorism. The media loves to go for the sensational. We should know soon enough what really happened. The automated messages sent out by the aircraft indicate something catastrophic, but don't give anything conclusive. Recovering the black boxes should be relatively easy even though the Mediterranean is about two miles deep in the vicinity of the crash. So far there have been no claims of responsibility from any of the usual suspects.

Condolences to the families of all on board, Rest In Peace.

Les Enekes can be reached directly by owl. For those not owl equipped, he can be reached at

The views of columnists in The Fountain Pen do not necessarily represent the views of the principals of the publication.

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