“It is about whether we live in a functioning democracy.. or want to.” ~ Andrew Coyne

“This isn’t about the planes, in other words, or costs, or accounting. This is about accountability. This is is about whether departments are answerable to their ministers, and whether ministers are answerable to Parliament — or whether billions of public dollars can be appropriated without the informed consent of either Parliament or the public. It is about whether ministers speak for their departments, or can disown them when it suits them. And it is about whether we, as citizens, are prepared to pay attention, and hold people in power to account when they lie to us.”

Read the entire column by Andrew Coyne in the National Post here: http://fullcomment.nationalpost.com/2012/04/11/andrew-coyne-auditor-generals-f-35-accounting-complaints-are-deja-vu-for-peter-mackay/ 








I’ll have a bit more on SNC later on, and please scroll down to digest and share the feature, Playing with the Dragon.

8 thoughts on ““It is about whether we live in a functioning democracy.. or want to.” ~ Andrew Coyne

  1. Like wouldn’t it have been wonderful if the government would have needed a referendum before spending all those billions on the new Port Mann, Highway 1 and the South Fraser freeway?


  2. ….and he just noticed this when? What! No mention of the media being part and parcel. Oh! Andrew is just finger pointing…thats right Andrew it’s not about whose job it has been to keep the politicians accountable and the public engaged. Maybe in about a decade he will figure out Part two to his article.


  3. I disagree, Ken. I believe it is the public whose job it is to keep the politicians accountable. As to keeping the public engaged, I think that there are many journalists out there, especially in the blogosphere, that keep those of us (who take the time to read) abreast of what is happening in our nation’s government.

    To quote Mr. Coyne: “It is about whether we, as citizens, are prepared to pay attention, and to hold people in power to account when they lie to us.” The more I see of and hear from Andrew Coyne, the more I think he should run for public office. He seems to have a finger on the pulse of Canadians far more than any of the politicians we have in government right now.


  4. You can disagree all you want Gini. The main stream has failed at their responsibility to deliver accurate, unbiased news. The facts are the media has been concentrated into the hands of the few and the so called news in not news at all. Propaganda is now the language that use to be news. To expect that persons should actually have to hunt down accurate accounting of current events IS to much to ask. People have been paying attention all along and they have been lied to, manipulated and cajoled by those that seek power, influence and money. If Coyne wants to pretend he and his comrades(the fourth estate) don’t have their share of dog shit on the shoes of public apathy you are welcome to believe that too. The independent news blogoshpere is a direct result of a failing fourth estate and wouldn’t likely exist had this not been the case.


  5. I’m partially with Ken on this one Gini. The “media” was established to “report news”. This “news” was suppose to be based on facts.. not supposition or speculation.
    Sounds like our government, no? pure speculation .. and idiocy rolled into one. Its name is Harper.
    I do however, agree with you Gini that the PUBLIC should own our OWN media outlet, one not “government sanctioned” or monitored and censored by any other party than the public itself.
    That’s where we allowed government to go bad, allowing them to censor out what they (as individuals holding power) wanted people to hear, which we know is not necessarily the truth.
    A media outlet that is not beholden to stock holders or corporation heads is sorely in need. There is NO WAY that one media mogul (say Shaw) should be able to “control” the flow of information across the country, or be beholden to government regulations that aren’t democratic in nature (such as suppression of truth on the basis that the public may not be tolerant of it, and other such nonsense reasons that have been used).

    So, my proposal is to establish a new media outlet that reports TRUTH, one not beholden to stock-holders and government. Oh my, did I just in a roundabout way describe Laila, Bill T, Borg Blog, and other individual truth-hounds?! 😀
    I’m just happy that there are these people who are willing to sacrifice much in order to keep the public aware and informed.
    Thanks to you all!


  6. I think Andrew Coyne’s final sentence is what we should be focussing on: “It is whether we live in a functioning democracy…..or want to.”

    “Or want to”……….those three little words say it all, IMO. How many times have you been chatting with a friend, relative, neighbour, or co-worker, and you bring up, for example, yesterday’s Michael Smyth column in the Province. Far too many times, you will be met with a blank stare, or “Who’s Michael Smyth?”, or “I don’t have time to read the papers.”

    They don’t have a clue what’s happening in our province, our country, or the world for that matter. They are quite content to ‘work eight hours, sleep eight hours, and have eight hours of fun’. If the topic isn’t American Idol, Entertainment Tonight, or some night-time soap opera, they’re not interested.

    How bad does our government have to get before the average citizen will wake up and take some responsibility for the future of their country? They don’t even bother to get out and vote, for heaven’s sake! How many British Columbians will be joining those who are committed to stop the Enbridge bulldozers? How many are standing with Alexandra Morton to save our wild salmon?
    Unless it interferes with their own personal lives; unless it’s a two-cent increase in gasoline prices or a 20% jump in their hydro bill, or an added dollar on the cost of a case of beer, they couldn’t care less.

    How many people have to lose their jobs before it registers…….’hey, something is wrong with the way our elected officials have been running our country, maybe we should start paying attention. Maybe we should start reading our newspapers, our independent bloggers. Maybe we should start watching and listening to the CBC news instead of NBC, ABC, CBS and Fox. Maybe we should watch the BC legislature channel on our days off once in awhile.’

    It’s not entirely the media’s fault. Many journalists are just lazy because we allow them to be. We need to hold them accountable just as we need to hold our MLAs and MPs accountable.


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