Gomery's Blinders and Canadian Federalism
Publication Year: 2007
Published by: University of Ottawa Press
Series: Governance Series
It began in such a small way, with a federal cabinet minister asking the Office of the Auditor General, in late winter 2002, to look into the circumstances surrounding three small Canadian government contracts given to a Montreal firm (Groupaction), between 1996 and 1999, for sponsorship activities in Quebec. ...
The $100 Million Mirage
In a democratic system, there is a need on occasion for super-professionals (judges, auditors, etc., who stand above the fray) to intervene. They are asked to cut the Gordian knot of problems that are not apparently resolvable by political deliberation or to provide I'heure juste on particularly ...
The Fabric of Society
The governing of modern democracies has evolved significantly over the past three or four decades. The traditional big-G centralized institutional order—top down, state centric, autocratic, hierarchical, bent on imposing sets of rules—has slowly been eroded (much like the power of ...
The Quail Enigma
The inquiry led by Justice John Gomery into the sponsorship affair kept many people riveted to their television screens. It pertained to a relatively small amount of taxpayers' money (less than seven-tenths of 1 percent of the $19-$20 billion annual budget of the responsible department, Public ...
Gomery I: Flawed from the Beginning
It may seem a little incongruous to refer to Kafka when analyzing the first report of Justice John Gomery on the sponsorship affair. Yet this report has a Kafkaesque flavour. As his journal attests, Kafka was often distraught and even led, on one occasion, to divide a sheet of paper into two columns to ...
Gomery II: Fear of Blurring and Lack of Temperantia
Justice John Gomery's phase one report, Who Is Responsible? (Gomery I), filed in November 2005, landed like a grenade. His phase two report, Restoring Accountability: Recommendations (Gomery II), filed in February 2006, generated more of a whimper than a bang. Reforming is not as entertaining ...
What Justice Gomery Failed to See
Taking a careful look at the Gomery proposals to repair the public governance apparatus before rushing into implementing them may be crucial but is hardly sufficient. One must also go beyond Justice Gomery's myopic analysis of proximate causes of the sponsorship saga and look at the dynamics that ...
The thawing of the ethos that one is sensing may not be as dramatic a transformation as the sort of true perestroika that some are calling for, but maybe this is the only sort of transformation that Canadians are willing to envisage or are even capable of—a polite revolution (Ibbitson 2005). How Canada will steer itself in today's interconnected ...