Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Gomery Report Resources

"The public trust in the system of government was subverted and betrayed, and Canadians were outraged, not only be cause public funds were wasted and misappropriated, but also because no one was held responsible or punished for his misconduct." [quote from the Phase 1 report of the Gomery Commission into the federal Liberal sponsorship scandal]

Justice Gomery's report into the sponsorship mess was released this morning. Here are resources relating to the commission and its findings.

For some interesting background on the sponsorship scandal and how it has widened the political rift between Quebecers and the rest of Canada, I would recommend the article Showing the Flag - The Origins and Consequences of the Sponsorship Scandal by Antonia Maioni, director of the McGill Institute for the Study of Canada. It was published in the June 2005 issue of Policy Options, the journal of the Institute of Research on Public Policy.

According to Maioni, "(M)ost important, the sponsorship scandal is eroding the public’s confidence in Canada’s democratic processes and political leadership and, equally serious, rebuilding the wall between Quebecers, in particular francophone Quebecers, and Canadians outside of Quebec. The first reactions to the whiff of scandal showed the rift: Many Canadians outside of Quebec either saw sponsorship as another indication of pandering to Quebec or as a worthy strategy to keep Quebec in Canada. Most Quebecers, on the other hand, were disgusted with the premise of being 'sold' Canada through sponsorships and flag-waving. Initial public opinion polls confirmed these sentiments, showing that most Canadians figured that political patronage was more prevalent in Quebec; while most Quebecers were outraged at the slander on their democratic values". It is highly doubtful things have changed since the summer.

And for a short yet informative history of the political corruption that has been prevalent throughout Canadian history since the beginning of Confederation, no one can beat historian Desmond Morton.

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posted by Michel-Adrien at 6:25 pm

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