January 23, 2007

One Year Later AdScam Seems To Be History

One year ago Canada got its new government. After thirteen years of the Liberals holding the reins the Conservatives returned to power, barely. Riding the downturn of the Liberals' fortune that came with the full-frontal attention placed on AdScam the Conservatives were able to squeak in a minority government. One year later, the Conservatives' fortunes seem to have peaked and begun its slide into the valley from whence it came while the Liberals seem to be emerging from the smoke with AdScam nowhere to be seen.

In no way am I implying that AdScam is dead and can't effect the Liberals- it may still be lurking somewhere in the haze just waiting for someone to aid its resurrection - but it seems to have begun to enter into the crevices of people's long-term memory. According to this post from BigCityLib, if an election was held based on the current polling trends the Liberals would retake power - albeit, in a minority situation. It would definitely seem that the problem that plagued the Liberals over a year ago is fading quick with the issue hardly even thought of when talk of the Liberals is brought up in general conversation.

At the time, AdScam was a huge issue. It dominated the talk of media, blogs, etc. So why has it been so easily forgotten about? Maybe because no matter how irrehensible it was, how expensive it was, or how unethical it was, it was born out of a cause that was much greater in scope both historically and nationally than the scandal ever could be. Attached to this was also the shedding of both leaders that were allegedly privy, at varying degrees, to insider information and the Liberals being forced to admit that they really are mortal while reconnecting with humbleness while under the watch of very scrutinizing and skeptical eyes.

Let's remember that at the time of the Quebec referendum things were fairly positive for both Canada and the Liberals. Canadians' standard of living was on the rise and therefore the Liberals were generally popular. Though all of this was dependant on how well the Liberals could continue to appease the public. The referendum threatened this arrangement and it was up to the government to do what it could to make the issue disappear. And with an interest in self-preservation that was only eclipsed by preservation of the nation, the Liberals planted the roots of what would become a national scandal. However, while we all were appalled by the scandal that followed, it's likely that the roots lingered closely behind in the back of Canadians' minds.

The fallout being what it was also allowed us to expunge any reminders of the scandal. During the Gomery inquiry there were essentially only two things, or people in this case, of any consequence that were attached to the scandal. These being Chretien and Martin. The former, which was able to make the process somewhat entertaining and somehow dull the seriousness of the situation and the latter, which was essentially let-off by the final report but still promptly stepped out of the spotlight immediately after the election loss. This was followed-up with the Liberals going through a 10-month soul-searching period of reconnecting with its members and its values while playing the role of opposition; a position completely unfamiliar to almost all of their members. The most important aspect of this was that it was done under the inauspicious eyes of the public.

With an altruistic beginning with a re-examination of grand proportions at the ending, the middle is essentially of no concern at this point. The reminders are gone, the inquiry came and went, the program has been shut down and Gomery's recommendations are in the hands of the Conservatives and now issue is seemingly of no more consequence to either the Liberals or the public. And with the Liberals now full-swing into their renewal, the public is returning to them with cautious optimism and confidence.

Quotes from people smarter than me...

"If a free society cannot help the many who are poor, it cannot save the few who are rich" ~ JFK

"Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter. " ~ Martin Luther King Jr.

"Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety. " ~ Benjamin Franklin

"First it is necessary to stand on your own two feet. But the minute a man finds himself in that position, the next thing he should do is reach out his arms. " ~ Kristin Hunter

"When you're a mayor and you have a problem you blame the provincial government. If you are provincial government and you have a problem you blame the federal government. We don't blame the Queen any more, so once in a while we might blame the Americans." ~ Jean Chretien

"Which is ideology? Which not? You shall know them by their assertion of truth, their contempt for considered reflection, and their fear of debate." ~ John Ralston Saul

"It is undoubtedly easier to believe in absolutes, follow blindly, mouth received wisdom. But that is self-betrayal." ~ John Ralston Saul

"Everybody dies, Tracey. Someone's carrying a bullet for you right now, doesn't even know it. The trick is to die of old age before it finds you." ~ Cpt. Malcolm Reynolds (Firefly, Episode 12)