Rex Murphy: When there’s a Liberal ethics scandal, the ‘commissioner’ helpfully smothers

A private island set in the cerulean waters of the Caribbean, owned by a reclusive billionaire, approached surreptitiously by luxury helicopter conveying a foreign prime minister and his hand-chosen entourage, all cloaked under a haze of secrecy and bureaucratic bumble-speak.

I think we have here some of the elements of a James Bond movie, absent the salaciously named houris of the Bond franchise.

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  • felis gracilis

    Poor, sad Mary Dawson. Thankfully, she has been put out of her (and our) misery.

    • Watchman

      It’s so convenient that this ethics issue will almost certainly now disappear forevermore, after the excuse used up til now that, “It’s under investigation”. If pressed, the new commissioner will say that the entire case would have to be investigated from the beginning as some aspects were unclear from the previous investigation.

      • felis gracilis

        I suspect you will be proven right all in good time. As Rex noted in his incisive article, the post of “ethics commissioner” is not only useless, it may actually impede ethical behaviour by the powerful since it substitutes a process which is uncertain at best for what should be our leaders’ own developed moral compass. What, pray tell me, use is Dawson’s advice to Bill Morneau that, legally, he could continue to hold his Morneau-Shepell shares in a numbered company and not put them in a blind trust. Any lawyer could have told him that. What is legal is not necessarily transparent and ethical.
        I doubt that this position can ever be transformed into something useful for the Canadian electorate and taxpayer. It is certainly no substitute for electing politicians who are ethical in the first place and for having an alert and critical media to remind them when they are not. If our media had given a small percentage of the attention to Morneau that they gave to Duffy, we would have ensured either truly ethical behaviour or a resignation.
        A year to investigate the PM’s “vacation” with the Aga Khan is an ethical travesty in and of itself.

  • BillyHW

    First 6 term prime minister!