Carbonear's Dean Penney surveys the political landscape

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We've all heard the the phrases “the political winds of change” and “sometimes a change is good as a rest."

letter to editor

Well I believe both have come to fruition this past several weeks and months.

When the end time comes to a person’s political life, reluctantly that person neither wants to accept it, let alone giving in and giving up, but it has happened to our former premier, Kathy Dunderdale.

Without going into the intricate details, we all know that she stepped aside to make way for change and for the party to retain political life, rather than be on life support.

We have seen change a little more closely to home with that of the recent provincial byelection, resulting in Sam Slade being elected as our Liberal MHA for our district. And even before that an almost complete change in the guard with our town council, with the addition of some new, fresh faces.

Sometimes a politician can over-extend their tenure, whether it is for the good or not of the people, the province or even the country. Sometimes a short tenure is not all that bad either. Take, for example, if Prime Minister Stephen Harper wins the next federal election. It will place him on a pedestal on par with the four mandates of Pierre Elliott Trudeau and Sir Wilfred Laurier.

If Harper continues his winning streak, then who knows, maybe even higher than that of Mackenzie King and Sir John A. MacDonald, with six mandates each.

With over-extensions as indicated above, I wonder how many fresh ideas can be implemented? Or is it just much of the same rhetoric.

Speaking of fresh ideas, how about that bold move federal Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau when he returned all Liberal senators to that of independents, basically solidifying his take on the Senate being non-partisan, and just imagine, our prime minister couldn’t even fathom this novel idea.

How about Bill Barry tossing his name into the political ring? Maybe his approach to governing is similar to that of our past premier, Danny Williams, in that it takes a businessman with a business approach to ensure and maintain our economic tide continues into the future. Maybe a total different approach is warranted in that we once again return to a Liberal government on our provincial scene. Hey, maybe even on the federal scene as well.

Then again, short tenures are not all that bad either. Take, for example, Joe Clark, Kim Campbell or John Turner, and Tom Rideout. Short, in this context, appears to have been a good thing.

In Carbonear, we are about to have a byelection for that of mayor, and followed by another for that of councillor of our town. I will reserve my personal thought on this, but if you take into account what the democratic process is supposed to entail, I would like for you to think about this: If something should happen to our prime minister, then the deputy minister would step in and fill that void, similar to that of premier, the deputy premier and to that of our mayor, the deputy mayor would fill that void until the next general election from what I understand and I stand to be corrected on that.

Then again there are a lot of changing parameters that can affect this within the democratic process that is sometimes puzzling and beyond our comprehension at times to make sense.

Whether it is changes at the highest level in government, to that of our provincial and municipal level, there are many non-attractive difficult challenging areas that needs to be tackled and as we have all seen from time and time again, there has been much of the same and with no change at all. To necessitate any change, requires our politicians regardless of what level to think outside the box from time to time.

— Dean J. Penney writes from Carbonear

Geographic location: Carbonear, Mackenzie King

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Recent comments

  • Larry
    February 07, 2014 - 12:30

    Change is always good Dean, so I guess having either man elected as mayor will be change from the incompetent individual who left the mayor's position, a person who seemingly reaped so much from the hard work of others on council over the past few 20 years. It is interesting to note that you support George but he failed to support you in your bid to have your building on Water Street re-zoned. I guess the blind is easily lead.