Reefer madness at Queen’s Park?
I blame it on legalizing the devil weed.
How else to explain the reefer madness emanating from Queens Park over the last couple of weeks.
Consider the opposition paranoia over the decommissioning of a commissioner.
When the Ford government announced it would put off building a French-language university and roll the French-language services commission (a busy office that apparently handles less than one inquiry a day) into the ombudsman’s office all hell broke loose.
Heck, it was nothing short of the end of the constitutionally protected rights for francophone Ontarians.
Never mind that the Ford government also announced the suspension of three other university expansions.
The ambitions of a handful of francophone academicians clearly outweigh the fiscal integrity of the province.
The hysterics induced by the illfated attempt to consolidate a legislative office were worthy of a Cheech and Chong movie.
For the benefit of sober minded folks, protest signs should have contained the caveat “no actual French-language services were threatened in this relocation.”
But if the commotion over decommissioning the French-language commissioner isn’t strange enough for you, take another toke and consider the weirdness that surrounded commissioning a police commissioner.
The government set about finding a new OPP commissioner in the usual way. A consultant was hired. A non-partisan board approved a candidate. Cabinet confirmed the candidate. Ho-hum, pass the Doritos. But wait. It turns out the new commish is a (exhale) friend of Doug Fords (isn’t everybody?).
And (long inhale) he is a cop!
The creative minds in the NDP smokehouse put it all together.
Toronto cop Ron Traverner applies to be the top OPP cop, is approved by a committee that includes a deputy minister who (shockingly) knows him and then is confirmed by a cabinet that includes his friend the Premier.
By gosh, it’s a conspiracy! Now I’m not one to question the usefulness of paranoid delusion, but a few facts might help get the NDP out from under the bed.
Knowing someone isn’t grounds for being recused from deciding on fit and character for a public sector job. If it were, half of cabinet would be out for most Order In Council (OIC) appointments.
It isn’t shocking that the deputy minister responsible for policing knows a senior officer who has served the City of Toronto for fifty years. In fact, it’s kind of refreshing.
And it isn’t at all unusual for employment consultants to broaden the search criteria when looking for a pool of candidates. They do it all the time, often in an attempt to get a sufficient representation of women, minorities or aboriginal people in the candidate pool.
In this case it would seem the consultants wanted to ensure there were candidates with actual policing experience. Again, that’s kind of refreshing.
Finally, Doug Ford is a member of Executive Council. As such he has a responsibility, shared with other cabinet members, to approve the hundreds of people who serve on Ontario agencies, boards and commissions.
Cabinet approval isn’t a mere formality. Ministers are responsible for ensuring that the character of the appointee is a fit for the position.
Based on everything that has been said (beyond the paranoid political rhetoric) cabinet has done a fine job here.
Ron Traverner is exactly the sort of experienced, professional cop required to lead the OPP.
Things are just fine. Andrea Horwath and the NDP can relax, roll a fat one and dream up the next grand conspiracy.