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Monday Morning Commentary

Rick Swenson

Suppressing the Truth Weakens Democracy

Modern Government is complicated, big, and bloated. For Brad Wall’s Government you can add secretive and devious. The Junta that runs the Saskatchewan Party only has one goal: Getting re-elected.

Saskatchewan voters are not surprised that Sask. Party politicians would lie to them. Actually, a majority has ignored the lies as long as the good times roll and the party goes on. Now the party is over. Who will pay? We all will pay.

David Porkopchuk Helps Put P.C. Back on the Map

On behalf of the P.C. Party, we thank David Prokopchuk our P.C. Candidate in the Saskatoon- Meewasin for helping to put the new P.C. Party on the Saskatchewan political map.

David’s effort in a well-run campaign showed the new P.C. Party is active and can be an alternative to the Sask. Party and NDP.

Last Friday and Saturday, I was once again in Saskatoon supporting PC candidate Dave Prokopchuk in the Meewasin by election. On Friday, I was knocking doors in a couple of residential areas on the north end of the riding and on Saturday morning, I was downtown between 24th and 25th in some of the high rise apartments there.

Arm River PC candidate, Raymond Carrick, was with me in this one particular 14-story building and as we neared the top, we took the opportunity to look out over the city. Directly to the north was City Hospital. When you looked across the river, you could see the construction occurring on the new Children's Hospital. Raymond is the Party's health critic and as such, has often commented on the waste and mismanagement of our health care dollars.

I hope everyone had an enjoyable and relaxing Family Day long weekend. It's hard to believe that its February 21st already with spring just right around the corner. I'm sure Old Man Winter isn't quite finished with us yet but there is light at the end of the tunnel. One of my neighbours has been calving since the middle of January and really appreciates this nice weather. Hopefully when our turn rolls around on April 1st, we will get more of the same.

An issue that seems to have come out of nowhere in the last year in North America is the idea that most of our news is "fake" news i.e. it is made up by reporters and networks and is a distorted view of what is real. Let's face it ... both Canada and the United States have founding principles based on the freedom of speech and the freedom of press so that various types of tyranny could not occur here as they had in places where many of our ancestors came from. I think we have a pretty strong belief in our society in those fundamental rights.

I, like many other Canadians, believe that our electoral system needs an upgrade after 150 years as a country. Canada has changed dramatically in that amount of time. We have seen the continued shifting of population from east to west. We see a country that has increasing ethnic diversity and we see a country that is more engaged than ever before with other nations around the world.

Unfortunately, we also see a country where only about half of our citizens take the opportunity to vote on who they want to govern this vast and wonderful country. Something is wrong.

Congratulations to David Prokopchuk of Saskatoon for accepting the PC Party's nomination in the Saskatoon Meewasin by election which has been called for March 2nd. I have known David since our days together in the PC Youth organization and I know his experiences working on Parliament Hill for a Quebec MP, working for the City of Saskatoon for many years and running his own financial investment business will put him in good stead with the voters of Meewasin.

I look forward to door knocking with David and talking to the people of Meewasin about the record of the Sask Party government and why it is time to have a more effective opposition in our Legislature. With new revelations coming out of the CBC this past weekend on the ever-expanding circle of Sask Party players in the GTH land scandal, it is absolutely incumbent that we bring accountability back to our governing processes. If you can find the time to give David a hand for a day or two, please come out and join us in the Meewasin by-election.

Yesterday I had the good fortune to finally be able to take in a day of the great Canadian pastime - ice fishing! The weather was a wonderful +7 on January 29th. I was with a couple of good friends, had lots of bites and brought home enough perch for a good feed. Buffalo Pound Lake had enough ice shacks and trailers on it to resemble a good sized town. When I tell my friends in the southern United States about this pastime, they just shake their heads in wonder that a person could sit on a 5 gallon pail, looking down a hole in the ice and enjoying themselves. All this while being dressed usually in very heavy clothing in order to put up with our winter environment. Yesterday was the exception as I was using bare hands some of the time. I hope there are a few more trips to the ice before winter is done.

Speaking of things being done....I am really getting tired of all of our television networks talking about all things "Trump". I want to be able to sit down in front of my television set or turn on my radio at news time and actually get some news about what is going on around me other than the prognostications of Donald Trump. I know he is the President of the most influential country on earth but surely there are other things going on than this constant barrage of what this man does on a minute-by-minute basis or a tweet-by-tweet basis. The good thing about the United States of America is that they have term limits on the office of President and many other political positions and therefore you can get rid of them in a timely manner.

Back here in Saskatchewan, I am expecting the Premier to call a by-election in Saskatoon Meewasin either tonight or tomorrow sometime. It should be a very interesting campaign with all of the different issues that have arisen in Saskatchewan since the last election campaign. Dr. Ryan Meili is now officially the NDP candidate and is a gentleman with radically different views on how our society should be structured. The Progressive Conservatives, the Liberals and the Green Party will also be contesting this election. The Sask Party candidate and the Sask Party government are going to have, I believe, a difficult time explaining all of the broken promises, deception and radical turns on policy which have occurred since the last election campaign.

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