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No Summer Reruns on the Curmudgeon Channel

Web posted on July 05, 2016

A Curmudgeon's View

By Les Enekes

Well, it's now July and summer break for some people, the kids are out of school (back to school sales start next week), it's vacation time for others. Everything seems to slow down except for some crazy drivers trying to get up to the cottage. We have our usual crop of sequels and over digitized junk at the movies. On TV it's reruns or worse. Some shows were bad enough first time around and should never see the light of day again. Others I wouldn't mind seeing but never go into reruns. The summer replacement shows for the most part are rather pathetic at best, with only couple of them being almost watchable. They are now bringing back old game shows in prime time with "celebrity" guests. I guess they don't make barrels that deep any more, because the networks are already scraping the bottom. Then we have the usual crop of summer unreality shows. Just when you think it can't get any worse, it does. Along comes Discovery Channel and jumps the shark for an entire week.

I don't do summer reruns. All of my columns over the summer will be new and original. There will be no summer replacement writers. I have a backlog of columns because of being overtaken by events. This column just added to that backlog. I will always find the time to comment on the latest events. The frequency of terror attacks has just increased dramatically. The American political conventions are coming up, then the real campaign starts. There is also some sort of athletic competition in Rio which deserves a wee bit of attention. No rest for these fingers.

Meanwhile, back in Queens Park Premier Whine's popularity is at 18% which I find rather surprising. I really expected it to be in the low single digits (friends and family only). After all the financial and other disasters the fiberals have given us since they came into power, I fail to understand how even friends and family could vote for them.

The latest debacle is the Ontario Retirement Pension Plan. They spent close to 20 million dollars on this mess. To add insult to injury they hired the same character to who overspent the Pan Am Games budget to run it. Is this the best they could come up with? Millions of dollars were spent to advertise it. They hired all sorts of people at outrageous salaries, and now they are getting gold plated severance packages. Obviously this was just a ploy to get her way with pension reform. I believe that Young Trudeau promised some sort of pension reform. I could be wrong, because I don't remember most of the hundreds of promises he made. For that matter I don't think he remembers all of the promises he made, but he seems to feel that he was elected because of all the promises. Premier Whine, like many of us don't remember what was promised. (Can anyone remember more than a couple of promises made by Young Trudeau?) She is much better at delivering things that were never promised.

Yes, the Canada Pension Plan needed some serious upgrading. It had not been changed in decades. The finance ministers were able to get together and come up with some fairly reasonable improvements. Unfortunately not everyone has a good workplace pension plan, and for many small business owners, their "pension plan" might be what they get when the sell the business. Not everyone is able to set money aside in an RRSP or TFSA. Naturally, not everyone is happy about this, but, it is better than what we had. The challenge now it to make sure that changes are done as needed.

We did not need Premier Whine wasting our money. She must be kept as far away as possible from Young Trudeau. She is the wrong influence.

The next provincial election will be here very soon. (23 months and counting) The two opposition parties are still in bad shape. One party has a credible and charismatic leader, but not much overall support, while the other has the most support, with an unproven leader of dubious charisma who just can't seem to get his act together. Come to think of it, how many people actually know his name?

The U.K. voted to leave the European Union and chaos ensued. If calmer heads don't prevail, many maps may have to be redrawn. Heads are rolling as they should. What bothers me with any referendum is that they go ahead with a vote without specifics about what will happen after the votes are counted. The exit plan should have been negotiated before the vote took place. Every last detail should have been worked out with nothing left to interpretation at a later date. That is the only way that the voters could make an informed and realistic decision. With something this important it is imperative nothing be left to chance, no surprises and no morning after regrets. People voted with their hearts, or possibly other parts of their anatomy, but certainly not with their heads. This was a seriously flawed process. There are many other terms that could be used but are not family friendly. I suppose FUBAR might be accurate . Now Scotland is looking at the possibility of another referendum to leave the U.K., and there is a chance that Northern Ireland might do the same. This is not as simple as picking up the ball and going home because you don't want to play anymore.

Interesting to note that the President of Mexico, Enrique Pena Nieto arrived in Canada for the Three Amigos Summit in a brand new Boeing 787. Young Trudeau arrived in Toronto for a state dinner in honour of the Mexican President in a fourteen year old RCAF Challenger jet. For overseas travel he uses a much older A310. President Obama arrived in Ottawa on Air Force One, a Boeing 747 that entered service in 1990. What is wrong with this picture?

I tried to watch the Canada Day "concert" on CBC, but my worse fears were confirmed. What a waste of time and taxpayers money. It was painful to watch one of the co-hosts trying to read from cue cards while the other looked embarrassed to be there. I didn't even try to watch the evening show. We must do better for next year. The other thing that really bothered me is that the other networks did not have any live coverage other Canada Day events from around the country.

On the other hand, our friends down south had their choice of three nationally televised Fourth of July events from Washington, New York and Boston. Each of them had recognisable "A List" performers, and various genres of music for all ages.

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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