Monday, December 29, 2008

In Defence of the Senate

Almost from the moment of its creation, Canadians have griped and complained about the Senate. It’s not elected. It’s not effective. It’s a patronage dumping ground.

With Prime Minister Harper’s elevation of eighteen new members to the chamber of sober second thought, it might appear that many of those criticisms have merit. However, there are far more reasons why we should keep our second federal legislature just the way it is. Reasons such as:

* Keeps meddlesome people out of the public marketplace where they could likely do much more damage.
* Unites Montreal and Toronto sports fans by rewarding former Leafs and Canadiens players with Senate seats.
* Helps maintain the mainstream media’s overwhelmingly liberal bias by removing the few remaining Conservative TV pundits.
* The Red Chamber would otherwise be of little use except possibly as a Parliamentary daycare. * Avoids the additional public expense of caring for dozens of aging superannuates.
* Keeps at least part of the government out of the messy paws of the proletariat.
* Helps stimulate the national economy in a time of financial crisis.
* Gives Mike Duffy something to strive for.
* Makes for a nice cushy reward for successful party bagmen and bagwomen.
* Eliminates the need to run House of Commons bills through Spellcheck.
* Gives Colin Kenny something to do when not running his tanning salon.
* Saves millions of dollars by avoiding reelection campaigns.
* Reduces the national unemployment rate.
* Helps reward hardworking, right-of-center businesspeople who just couldn’t get a fair break in Canada’s pinko-socialist economy.
* Provides a venue not only for sober second thought but also for thorough triple dipping and quick quadruple moonlighting.
* Allows prime ministers to simultaneously bash patronage appointments and reward party faithful.
* Ensures budget surpluses don’t get out of control.
* Adds extra interesting stop on Parliamentary tours for high school students.
* Provides excellent recruiting ground for new Cabinet members.
* Boosts hotel and restaurant industry in downtown Ottawa.
* Confuses Americans who think we have a real Senate.
* Gives Albertans something to bitch about.
* Doesn’t pester and annoy the electorate with regular elections.
* Puts the "bi" in bicameral legislature.
* Provides extra space for special events like state visits, the opening of Parliament and staff Christmas parties.
* Gives citizens better odds than the lottery - every Canadian has a one in a million chance of getting a Senate seat.

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