Cliff-jumping representatives

Do lemmings really jump off cliffs? Sometimes they do, but not deliberately. As comical as it is to think of these porky little rodents organizing an annual jumping-off-a-cliff day, lemmings migrate en masse when things get too crowded. Sometimes, they come up against obstacles like cliffs, and when they do, their limited understanding of Newtonian physics pushes them to continue on over.

I was reminded of the unfortunate lemming whilst attending a Students’ Union meeting recently. You know, the meetings with those geeks who get paid thousands of dollars a year of your money and whom you didn’t elect. If you’re the kind of person who thinks things are best left to those in charge, think again–your un-elected officials aren’t the sharpest tools in the shed.

You might remember being asked once whether you would jump off a cliff if little Johnny Troublemaker told you to. It’s a good question asked to keep kids out of trouble. But like lemmings, this year’s band of commissioners follow their instincts, and their current instinct is to follow their chief lemming, whether or not it takes them over the precipice.

To illustrate the point, commissioners approved a multi-million dollar budget with scarcely a murmur in the last two Students’ Union meetings. They approved the spending of $15,000 on an absurdly excessive hand-print recognition system for staff and, to round it all off, they agreed commissioners should not bring resolutions to council not approved beforehand by the executive cabinet. In short, the SLC will perform the function of a very expensive rubber stamp. These guys and gals are so gullible they could conceivably arrive home to a burglar and actually believe he somehow got lost as he hauls away the VCR.

I’m not suggesting executives are merely thieves. What I am saying is executives are politicians not your kind old grandmother. I assume commissioners know what a politician is. According to a recent survey by the World Bank a politician is a member of society that only 13 per cent of Canadians claim to trust and only 17 per cent of Canadians regard as ethical. I hope they keep that in mind the next time an executive shuts a commissioner down. Executive Cabinet exists as a servant of SLC, lest anyone forget.

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