A great man once said, "Politics is inherently stupid." That great man was me.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

What Have You Done For Me Lately?

I'm a rarity among Newfoundlanders: I can't say I have any great love for Danny Williams. To be honest, I think he's the most competent premier Newfoundland has ever had, but then again that's not really saying much with the likes of these.

Newfoundlanders love Mr. Williams - in fact, they love him so much that he's enjoying sky-high approval ratings of 78%, something most politicians would kill for. I'm not hopping on the Danny bandwagon, however - and here's why: aside from the Atlantic Accord, what else has he done for Newfoundland and Labrador? Tough talk with the feds? Sure, it's a nice change - but while it might have worked when Paul Martin held the reigns of ditherdom, Stephen Harper is not a man that can be cowed by a blustery millionaire. Huffing and Puffing on the brick house of Herper's confederation benefits only two people - Danny Williams, and his public approval rating. There had better be a carrot to follow that stick, Danny.

I admire the leadership of the Prime Minister because I feel he's principled and honest. I can't say anywhere near the same for Mr. Williams. In the summer of 2005, when Harbour Breton's future was on the line (admittedly, it had already been decided), Mr. Williams said he supporetd the community wholeheartedly. Then he allowed a "free vote" on the issue, instead of applying the whip to his caucus, a tactic that showed a demonstrable care for his own hide at the expense of the people.

Despite this, I do not cast doubt on the love Mr. Williams holds for this province or its people. The simple fact is, he's a patriot and it is high time this province had an intelligent, hard-working leader who would aggressively defend the interests of Newfoundlanders and Labradorians. All of these qualities can be aptly ascribed to Mr. Williams. Still, all of this is no substitute for a solid plan to place Newfoundland and labrador on solid economic footing. The Atlantic Accord is a good start, but it's just that: a start. I'm still waiting for the rest of the plan to be revealed to me.

Because when five thousand people line up looking for work in Alberta, the question is begged to Mr. Danny Williams: what have you done for me lately?

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