Scientists find missing particle in Tony Clement speech - Macleans.ca
 

Scientists find missing particle in Tony Clement speech

Scott Feschuk on a recent speech by Tony Clement, an actual minister in the federal government


 
Scientists find missing particle!

Getty Images; CP; Photo Illustration by Taylor Shute

Politicians in Ottawa say dumb things all the time and we barely notice. But every once in a while an elected official says something so dumb that it makes you think, “Whoa, hang on a minute—that’s pretty dumb. In fact, that may be the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard.”

Which brings us to a recent speech by Tony Clement.

When not tweeting about his squash game, Tony is an actual minister in the federal government. He spoke this past weekend about government spending to a conference of conservative-minded Canadians. His words are below in bold.

What we have to do is to ingrain [the] idea of efficient and constrained use of tax dollars on a day-to-day basis, at every level of the bureaucracy.

That’s a solid brainwave, Tony. You should totally do that as soon as your party forms a government. In other news, your party formed a government 2,200 days ago. What have you guys been waiting for—mood lighting?

The statist non-solutions of the Trudeau era convinced me at an early age that what Canada needed most was freedom from the dead hand of government.

And that is why since 2006 we Conservatives have massively expanded the size and budget of government.

Everyone in the government should get out of bed every morning, not only thinking, “How can I do my job to the best of my ability?” but also asking, “How can I do my job in an excellent way at less cost to the taxpayers?”

If bureaucrats need a reference point, they should think back to the morning in 2010 when Tony got out of bed and asked himself, “How can I do my job while using the G8 summit as a thin pretext to shamelessly spread tens of millions in taxpayer dollars around my riding, prettying up the parks and building gazebos without keeping any paperwork in a cavalier spending orgy over which I alone preside?”

Not long after this sorry episode, Tony was named president of the treasury board—essentially, the guy in charge of reviewing the particulars of all government spending. This happened because Stephen Harper likes to rub our faces in it.

If you take nothing else from my talk this morning, please take this: we are working to change the culture in official Ottawa from one of spending enablers to one of cost containers.

Up until this moment, most scientists had believed it was impossible to cram this much dumb into a single sentence. You know how physicists at the Large Hadron Collider are looking for the so-called God particle? Here we have definitive proof of the existence of the Dumb particle. It’s been hiding in Tony’s mouth this whole time.

Where to begin?

First of all, it’s worth reiterating: Tony’s party has been in power for more than six years. If the culture of “official Ottawa” represents such a grave threat, you’d think the Conservatives might have considered confronting it at some point in the first 315 weeks.

Second, I haven’t read the BNA Act recently, but I’m almost positive that the people who comprise “official Ottawa” report to and take their marching orders from certain men and women who just so happen to be in charge. People like—spoiler alert!—TONY CLEMENT.

Third, it is perhaps useful to ponder: who have been the most egregious “spending enablers” in official Ottawa? Is it the bureaucrat who splurges on muffins for a department meeting? Or is it the Prime Minister and finance minister who together have introduced more than $60 billion in new spending and added $150 billion to our federal debt?

As Winston Churchill said when he addressed our Parliament during the bleakest days of the Second World War, we have not journeyed all this way across the mountains, across the Prairies, across the centuries, because we’re made of sugar candy!

It takes a unique commitment to pure, uncut dumbness to liken the deadliest war in human history to a government’s attempts to convince bureaucrats to spend slightly less money. We shall fight them on the balance sheets! We shall fight them in line-by-line expenditure reviews! We shall never surrender to year-over-year, adjusted-for-inflation spending increases!


 
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Scientists find missing particle in Tony Clement speech

  1. One of the dumbest articles I’ve read.

    • Only ONE OF? I fall short yet again.

      • Well, there is a good chance that Rehfer can’t count.

      •  I really like it scott

      •  Don’t worry about that, Scott. As long as you get back up again after ‘falling short’, you’ve got a fighting change!

        Of course, if it is ‘one of the dumbest articles’ Rehfer has read, that might just mean that he doesn’t read much… Or that he lives in Muskoka-Parry Sound

    • It only sounds dumb because of who he’s quoting.

  2. Reached for comment on his government’s already significant delay in enacting such change, Clement replied “Baby baby baby baby baby baby baby baby baby baby baby baby baby baby baby baby baby baby baby baby baby baby baby baby baby baby baby baby baby baby baby baby baby baby better come back later next week.”

    • Is this a Justine Beaver song?

  3. I don’t get it..is this a real article? Did you publish this by accident?

    • I appreciate and benefit from the specific nature of your constructive criticism.

    • Oh God, it’s the doctor’s office waiting room group again. 

    • I know, right? It’s hard to believe a politician could be this dumb….o wait….no it isn’t – he’s a Harper Conbot.

  4. You’re just jealous you can’t make such hard hittling and momentous speeches as this Scott. Admit it you’re just jealous of my power and prestigiousness and my Churchillian quotes.
    Tony C 

  5. I love the Harper goverment. They preach that they are fiscally prudent but spend money like NDPers. 9 billion for planes. How many? Nobody knows. Will they function as their are supposed to?
    Nobody knows. Billions for prisons. Why? Because crime increasing so much? Reduce the number of goverment employees. What is the expected cost? 2 billion. Will this result in the goverment been run more effiently? Nobody knows. The plan may be to let industries run themselves because they do such a good job. Maple Leaf foods come to mind. The cattle industries is another. They are so fiscally prudent I think they should hold another G7 and G20 in the same year because of what they can show the world. But this time I think they should hold it at Whistler. There are so fiscally prudent that I am sure the keep track of all their expense and know what things cost. Just ask Peter MacKay and Julian Fantino.

    • As an NDPer I resent the first line of your comment, especially since we’ve been hammering away on the F35 debacle and the Getting Serious About Building Prisons bill for ages now. 

  6. I think the dumb particle struck the G&M this week. After Harper rammed through his monstrosity of a crime bill, importing America’s failed war on drugs and crime against outrage from Canadians and warnings from Americans, they announce, “Harper’s promise fulfilled as House passes crime bill.”

    The next day a headline reads, “Liberals open their robo-call books after fake confession surfaces” even though the party handing over the info had nothing to do with the silly YouTube prank.

    (Either the dumb particle hit, or they have their faces so far up Harper’s butt they have suffocated their journalistic integrity…)

    • didn’t you see the oil sands rolling banners over at the globe and mail website this week?

      • That’s Ethical Tar, dear.  The cutesey little Blondebot said so.

  7. Tony Clement requires “perspective”

    Scott, my advice is to roll up a big fatty and burn it down while having a beer or two. After the inevitable video game and cheesie binge has run it’s course, re-visit Tony’s comments. Hell, watch some Dean Del Mastro HoC clips as well and you’ll understand that there is something deeply twisted at work here. Sure, it is first rate depraved comedy, but the realization that there are tragic outliers attached to their shtick may send you running for another fatty and more beer.
     Tread carefully as it can spiral from a joyous experiment to a self perpetuating cycle akin to a funhouse ride you can’t exit. Just look at what has happened to Aaron Wherry. I can’t even imagine the mind numbing intake required to maintain sanity while attending every session of the HoC – the man is a national treasure and makes Keith Richards seem like a sloppy, drink spilling greenhorn in comparison.

     On second thought, you might want to sidestep the whole idea. Unless you possess a Wherrian constitution you can end up with “formica face”, like Rob Anders, and that’s a road to avoid at all costs. 

    • It’s performance art by and for people whose idea of art is a velvet Elvis painting.

      • This would only be funny if weed weren’t just made a schedule 1 drug

        the punchline is we get to incarcerate a bunch of pot heads sitting around in their pyjamas for 120K per year.

        Does your family pay 120k per year in taxes? I’d be surpirsed if most streets in Canada don’t generate that kind of tax revenue.

  8. Somebody used the word hip-ocracy to describe Tony’s performance and he took it as a compliment on his cool, tweet-festooned administration.

  9. Apparently Tony feels we would do well to replace the Tories in that position by those paragons of fiscal restraint, the Federal Grits.   Or, now that, leaderless and consisting of teen dropouts who didn’t run with the intention of getting into office, the current official opposition not-so-closet-socialist tax-and-spent-on-acid NDP.

    Yeah.  Good idea.  Out of the frypan …

    • What was the point behind this?
      No really, did you just randomly type stuff, because I have no idea how this is relevant to the above article or what it means.
      Google translate was of no use either.

    •  The “Dumb Particle” strikes again, eh Robert? “Tony feels we would do well to replace the Tories…”?  Actually, that sounds like a good idea (at least as far as I’ve quoted) except I don’t think it was Tony’s intent.

      How about a parliament made up of REAL people, with real concerns about the average Canadian? Instead of basing things on party lines, base tehm on things that will actually HELP Canadians! There’s a thought!

  10. sure it’s easy to make fun of Tony Clement, sure it’s easy to make fun of Vic Toews, john Baird and Dean Del Mastro….

    more people should 

    • Anders, Polliverre, Nicholson, van Loan, etc.  I often wonder about the people that vote for these clowns.

      • they probably blindly vote party… otherwise it’s just kind of scary…

  11. I think the god/dumb particle reference from cosmology/quantum physics is the wrong analogy.

    I’m afraid that so many really stupid ideas being produced by so rapidly and randomly by so many Harper muppets in such a small space will lead to an agglomeration of such negativity that it will rapidly coalesce and form it’s own gravitation field.
    This will continue to form a home for more and more of the silly remarks and “misspeakings” such that this effect will be magnified until a singularity of idiocy so inescapable is formed.
    This growth will build until it finally, collapses in on itself to form an infinitely dense micro-sphere which will rebound creating a whole new universe of daftness that will take its place in the multiverse with us, but quite separate from us.

    The question is will Canada be sucked in with it, or will we stay this side of idiocy’s event horizon?

    • My wife calls it “plain old incompetence.”  Exhibit A: Fantino reading his script.

  12. Tony is the spokesman because he’s the only cabinet minister not 100 lb overweight.
    Maybe, because they removed his brain.

  13. Tony is not dumb–he is doing exactly what we have been doing for years. It is the Canadian voter that is dumb! All they need are sound bites.

  14. This is the only kind of article journalists should write. Because Harper and the Cons are such worthless, corrupt, ignorant, bible beating scumbags. Anything more than mockery gives this, the most incompetent, failed government in Canadian history, far too much credibility.

  15. I don’t see the discovery of the “Dumb Particle”, however you might be on to the discovery of the “Blatant Hypocrisy Particle” – but I think if scientists were interested in finding it, they would have looked to politicians long ago.

  16. Aw c’mon Scott, go easy on Tony.

    It could not have been easy at the time of the questions over the Gazebos for Tony to do his Mr Bean impression while sitting there listening to John Baird doing his Ralph Kramden impression

  17. Scott – loved the article.  Thanks for bringing to light, once again, the intellectual prowess of Tony Clement.   I know so many people who think this government guiding us towards disaster but yet we can’t do anything about it.  Sure the Liberals had their scandals but they were paying down our debt and making us into a financial powerhouse.  Once the Reform party is done in Ottawa, we are going to be like the States and we will get someone like Obama come in and play Janitor to clean up their mess (much like he has had to do for Bush/Cheney). 

    Also, the culture of fear that this Government has created within the Public sector will take a least a generation for it to subside.  No questions, no communication (unless by email).  This government has set us so far back in so many areas.

    I’m sure Harper will win the next Election (hoping not though) and it will only be then that the dumb will realize what is happening and then sway their vote to another party.  Frankly, at this point, I don’t really care who gets it, as long as they respect the Constitution and democracy.

    • let me correct myself on that “Financial Powerhouse” comment – I meant to say a bastion of financial governance (does that sound Reform-like enough to pas for one of their propaganda press releases?)

  18. Great idea. Wish I’d thought of it. That Clement is one smart dude. Nowhere near as dumb as he looks.