Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Two bananas short of a Republic?

The uneasy tidings regarding Canada's newest Governor General nominee continue to leak out from Quebec. And for those that actually still feel any attachment to the Vice Regal position it's a rather worrisome time to be a monarchist.

Michaelle Jean, the Quebecois film maker and broadcaster tapped by Prime Minister Paul Martin to replace Adrienne Clarkson, continues to find herself in the high heat spotlight. Interestingly enough, it's separatists that are suggesting that the Governor General designee may not be one to take an oath to the Queen all that seriously.

Quebec media and bloggers alike are abuzz with all sorts of contradictory information about Madam Jean and her husband Jean-Daniel Lafond's political leanings and past expressions of sovereignty passion.

The Prime Minister for his part is sticking to his guns, stating that the government did a thorough job of vetting her application, investigated all paths and are firmly convinced of her dedication to a united Canada.

Personally the GG's position is not one that I give a great deal of thought towards, there are far more important things in the country to be concerned about. However, one must admit a bit of envy towards our American neighbors. I don't normally find many things about their system of governance that I like, but the nomination process for high profile government positions is one we could certainly take a look at. Compare the process for selecting a new US Supreme Court Judge and our little hand picked lottery winning for GG and well, I think we would be well served to set up some committees for closer looks on all government positions.

For many Canadians our days as a Constitutional Monarchy are pretty well numbered anyways, a growing number of Canadians seem to think that once Queen Elizabeth leaves the throne we as a nation should set aside our Monarchist ways and evolve into a more Republican form of governance. A position I tend to agree with these days, however, I certainly don't think we should speed the process up by placing anyone in the Queens employ who might not actually be inclined to respect the boss.

A more thorough investigation of the Jean appointment is certainly called for. The announcement a few weeks ago was more in line with a patronage appointment, rather than a solemn appointment of the nation's touchstone with the throne.

Then again if the nominee is truly a sovereigntist it might possibly all be a misinterpretation of terminology. Perhaps the PM only asked Madam Jean and her husband Mr. Lafond if they wish to represent the Sovereign in Canada. It quite possibly may have been something they wished to associate themselves with eh, a little Sovereignty Association for two, it's not all that an uncommon idea in Quebec!

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