One minor observation on Jacques Demers' appointment to the Senate -

One minor observation on Jacques Demers’ appointment to the Senate


As a distraction from those other appointments—Hey, look! A hockey coach!—surely Jacques Demers is already justifying that senatorial salary.

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One minor observation on Jacques Demers’ appointment to the Senate

  1. You realize you're not exactly endearing yourself to your future Senate colleagues by saying stuff like this. Poor Jacques!

  2. And he cannot read.

  3. How about a Senator who is blind? Would that serve the public well? Of course it would.

    For some people, illiteracy is a disability, just like blindness or any other disability. M. Demers has been coping with this his entire life. I'm sure he'll do just fine in the Senate.

    • Fair argument in his favour. There are several means of providing documents to the blind, which makes the comparison not fully persuasive, but your point is well taken. I may have an inaccurate perception of a senator's duties, but it always seemed to me an ability to plough through mounds of documents was high on the list.

    • How rude and ignorant – don't equate blindness with illiteracy – seriously, you've never heard of Braille?

      Mr. Demers will fit perfectly in the Conservative caucus. He will also be seen more than ever on Quebec television.

      • Many blind people don't use Braille to read. They use audiobooks, text-to-speech software, etc. The governor of New York is blind, and doesn't read Braille. He relies on assistance from his staff and on audiotapes to get by, and he memorizes all his speeches. I imagine M. Demers will use similar methods to circumvent his disability.

        • "I imagine M. Demers will use similar methods to circumvent his disability."

          You don't think an ability to read is something of a sine qua non for a Senator?

        • "I imagine M. Demers will use similar methods to circumvent his disability."

          You don't think an ability to read is something of a sine qua non for a Senator? Sort of like having feet is for a tapdancer? I mean, people without feet can still do a lot of stuff, but tapdancing is maybe not the ideal career choice.

          • Listening is just reading by other means. People who can't read due to dyslexia or other impairments often compensate by developing exceptional listening and memory skills.

          • That's true, though it's hard to speedlisten in the same way one speedreads. But actually I think he will make quite a good Senator, of the Dignified Canadian type as opposed to the Wisdom of the Ages type.

          • Demers is only at a one page disadvantage to Chretien.

          • Whose skills were political, not parliamentary.

          • You were the one who brought up the need to read as a Senator….tapdancer analogy and all…one would assume a PM would need to read even more.

            Demers will be just fine, he suits his purpose well…..he probably is a bit of a loose cannon.

          • Funny you should say that — of all the senators that the prime minister has appointed so far, he's the first one that I think has the potential to develop an independent spirit.

          • Kady, did the first 15 (and presumably this 9) actually sign any binding agreement wrt Senate reform etc?

          • From what I can tell, no. To be honest, I'm not sure if such an agreement would be enforceable.

          • But didn't the previous batch make that (non-binding) pledge?

          • I think it is now clear, no real pledge of any type was made. We certainly know that it was not made in public, nor has any written document surfaced.
            Frankly I don't think it could… making the offer of a Senate seat conditional upon future political support is not only unethical… it is probably illegal.
            I don't doubt the 24 will be pressured to retire in 8 years if we still have a Conservative PM. Otherwise I suspect the pressure will be to hang in as long as possible.

  4. Would you stop it with your attacks on Harper? You're disrupting the state of bliss and serenity that characterizes the Harper fans who comment here.

    • Oh boy, really rough attacks on Harper, my, my – stop whining – want a violin?

      Don't like the blog – don't read it. There are choices you know.

  5. Anon – sorry, I owe you an apology. I clicked submit too fast when realizing I didn't read your comment properly.

    Again, very sorry.

  6. I don't think Demers is illiterate anymore – I could be wrong, but I thought he learned to read.

    Anyway, it doesn't matter – he's been appointed for Quebec votes – pure political strategy

    • There are Hab fans across the country you know. Not just in Quebec!

      Maybe it's Harper's way of trying to grasp past glories when everything about you is a mess? Even after you dumped the ones that had a modicum of proven ability?

  7. Why can't we have smart and educated people in the Senate? Maybe more people who actually went to university.

    • Like Dr. Ogilvie?

  8. Senator Demers will do a great job. He will offer an important perspective and add balance to the debate. A Senate that is filled solely with like-minded people does not contribute to good government.

    • Hear, hear.

    • I dunno about the "great job" prediction yet, but I share your thoughts on the perspective & balance thing. The ugly comments against a man who got through most of his adulthood despite illiteracy, who has overcome this by learning to read at a very late age, and who has converted that into an impressive awareness campaign to help others are, well, ugly.

  9. Only Harpo can use' "the ends justify the means," to qualify his abhorent actions. Like a good sheeple, Sen Brown jumps up to defend the indefensible! Sen Brown today you lost all cred with Canadians.

  10. What use does the Senate have for a hockey coach? It's the Prime Minister who calls the timeouts.

  11. Hopefully he can find a way to pull Ken Dryden.