Tip your hat to the politicians

I got a post from Lee stating his new found respect for politicians from all stripes since he got involved in politics.

I’d like to agree with him. A tip of the hat to everyone who puts the towel on his/her arm and makes the decision to serve the public. It’s a tough job for not much pay (in most cases).

I come down hard on politicians for their policies but I admire their willingness to serve the public.

That’s why I refuse to believe all the crap that circulates about them during an election.

My parents came down for a visit over the weekend and after my dad got done with the ‘getting results together’ speech (he must have got his talking points), my mother proceeded to tell me about ‘those Liberals’ who had defaced a Brent Taylor sign. And how those Liberals had defaced
Tanker Malley.

And you’ve heard all the other allegations swirling around. Anonymous letters to constituents in Brent Taylor’s riding dredging up the past. People calling in the name of Joan MacAlpine demanding to know how some poor old senior will vote. Tories supposedly buying up all the Acadie Nouvelles so that Acadians wouldn’t see the CRA poll results showing a Liberal lead. And there’s more. Many more.

All I can say is this. There are a number of angry people out there. Folks that don’t like a certain politician and are going to great lengths to smear them – unethical behaviour and in some cases illegal behaviour.

But I can’t and won’t believe that this is organized by the candidates. For one thing, I have met enough to know that the vast majority of them are good, honest people. For another, I can’t imagine givine the reins of power to folks who would sanction unethical and even illegal acts to further their political aspirations.

For example, the Tory blog, Progress for New Brunswick includes very un-New Brunswick-like slander that includes saying:

This is the same Party [the Liberals] that would strip every Canadian of their property.

Snakes slither, jack-asses bray and Liberals Lie, it’s their nature.

They also have political grafitti on their site that most people would think is worse than defacing a political sign.

Brent Taylor links to this blog from his blog but I’ll bet he doesn’t endorse their slander.

So, to all those, like my mother, that think politicians/candidates would do this kind of sleazy stuff just to get elected, I say forget it.

The reality is that these wackos like the anonymous because-their-so-cocky-they-can’t-even -tell-us-who-they-are Progress for New Brunswick Project.

One thing is for sure, there’s lots of chickens in the NB blogosphere. I followed the blogging of the national election recently and almost all the posters had their names posted publicly (for example Warren Kinsella). There were a few anonymous blogs but usually serving up some inside knowledge. These guys in NB have no inside knowledge. They just don’t want anyone to know their names.

Of course, I have actually received threatening emails twice this week from a disgruntled blogger (and no I don think it’s part of any sanctioned campaign).

So maybe the anonymous bloggers are smarter than me.

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0 Responses to Tip your hat to the politicians

  1. Lee says:

    Thanks David, but I am all female.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Man, you have not worked in politics if you actually believe that! Don’t you find it strange that the blogs were all clean and civilized (except Charles, where the people are vehement at him) and all of a sudden an election comes all and everything is practically R rated?

    That kind of naivete is soooo refreshing! Who would have thought that a man with such an education who actually worked for government would actually believe that! It’s just sweet.

    I’ll give you some inside information heard from a source very close to the campaign: “these two guys (Graham/Lord) are just plain evil” And that’s one of the most charitable, optimistic people I’ve ever known.

    Ever actually HEARD Brent Taylor ‘back in the day’? I’m sorry, but those kind of views just don’t go away. You actually think he has a link to a blog he’s never read? Ahhh, that’s just so cute! Did you know that Santa will be here soon?

    To be fair, every riding is not having stories like that. No doubt the closer they are, the more likely they ‘stoop to that level’. But politics is a contact sport don’t ya know!

  3. David Campbell says:

    Ouch. Sorry, Lee. Male bias abounds.

  4. David Campbell says:

    I can’t bring myself to believe the folks that are running our government would use unethical and illegal behaviour just to get elected. I realize that sounds naive.

  5. Cooker Boy says:

    I think people really see past that David. Running for office is not an easy task and I admire those who run.

    Imagine the dedication of all candidates and their families that go door-to-door for four weeks looking to meet as many constituents as possible.

    That being said, our political system is becoming more and more like the American one.

  6. Anonymous says:

    That’s silly, take a look at elections in Maine. Think that is hard hitting? Politics has always been a nasty business and anybody that thinks Canada has been different than the US hasn’t been involved in politics. Politics is like any area of life though, every area is different, and the upper echelon of every party is different. While I don’t ‘respect’ those who run, any more than I respect anybody else, the unfortunate part is that within parties a candidate has no more ‘power’ than they can yell for.

    I would have thought the Tanker and budget ordeal would have taught people what NB politics is about, but it seems people’s memory is short.

    But just because Brent Taylor is a bigoted malcontent doesn’t mean the tory in the next riding over is. The vast majority of ridings are running fairly smooth, and you have to remember what is FAR more common in politics than scummy tricks, and that’s lies. They are cheap and easy, and parties have made allegations forever. Many parties will vandalize their own signs and blame the opponent, but now with the internet it is far easier just to allege vandalism, who’s going to check?

    All of those ‘allegations’ are just that until verified, and how many will go to that trouble. I’ve not seen many verified in the paper or news, where at least somebody goes to the bother to check.

    The online stuff is something else, that’s just talk. But anybody who thinks that kind of stuff is new is also being naive. The internet just wasn’t available throughout much of our electoral history. But do some study on the history of elections if you think mudslinging is new to canada.

  7. TheBlueBlogger says:

    Anon, unfortunately you are right. It has always been there. but I can tell you that this is my 5th prov/fed election and the smears keep escalating.

    It’s unfortunate that you do not respect people who run. I know politicians from all sides and they all share a common characteristic, they love their communities.

    Every campaign I have worked on we would call the opposing candidate if we saw a sign vandalized. Likewise, the courtesy was given to us.

    I’m sure there are some that are “bad”, but I think they are more of the exception then the rule.

  8. Anonymous says:

    I know people who run for every level of government, and I know plenty of people who don’t. And I can tell you that they ALL ‘love’ their communities. There are volunteers who love their communities so much they spend their valuable spare time volunteering and trying to make them a better place-and quite often it is the political decisions that are made that make them worse in the first place.

    Mr. Campbell here doesn’t run for office, but every day he puts out several blogs talking about his central issue-that New Brunswick needs help and that the media and political class are the ones who are the problem. His contribution I call “work” far more easily than the guys in F’ton who make decisions that lead to the result that our blogging friend is complaining about.

    He’s not alone, there are thousands of unsung workers and volunteers who clean up their communtities, who volunteer at their churches to clean up areas and raise many for community issues.

    The idea that somehow people who are politicians deserve special connotations of ‘community love’ is ludicrous. What has Jody Carr ever done for Oromocto? But I can give you a list of twenty people off the top of my head who keep the SPCA open, who hand out food baskets to the poor, and on and on. The idea that somehow a guy (just an example off the top of my head) who gets PAID damn well to ‘represent’ his community is showing more love than others who do much more work for nothing is complete balderdash.

    As said, that doesn’t mean I disrespect him/them, it means that as a class they are no more worthy of respect than saying ‘all dentists love their community’. Some of them probably do, some don’t, some you can’t tell. As for the ‘hard work’ they do, again, just go look at the legislation. There is extremely little, and most votes are made along party lines so they don’t even need to read the legislation. Some say “oh, but they have to be available to their constituents all the time”. That’s garbage. I’ve tried to see many MLA’s and its often impossible to track them down. You can get help from staff, but that’s it.

    As for individual campaigns, like I said, that’s relative. Just because YOU always acted in a certain way doesn’t mean every person across the province/country did. Take a look at any election and the ‘stories’ are quite an exception. In fact, like I said, in the media they are pretty much non-existent, which means you have to take what you hear from “some guy up there” with a grain of salt.

    I know of ridings where the campaign teams are in fierce competetion, and I know of other ridings where one party has loaned supplies to the other and where the candidates have long been good friends. It’s all fugazi, which is why you can’t say that “every person…” etc. There was a line in a movie I remember: “nobody knows anybody….that well” Just because somebody acts in a certain way doesn’t mean you know what they are feeling. Hell, I live in a community that generally I like, that if I left I’d probably say I love, but while I live here drives me absolutely crazy in some ways and sometimes I swear I hate it. That doesn’t stop me from contributing.

  9. scott says:

    David,

    Do your parents live somehwere in Southwest Miramichi?? Tell ’em to come down to Brent’s headquaters in Blackville, they may even see a Sorry Centrist walking around? Word has it there has been sightings.