Where is the voice of reason?
Might just be me, but maybe not. Anyone else feeling this undercurrent of weirdness out there? And not just weirdness, but a wholesale escalation of craziness thinly disguised as normality? We are adrift without a captain, without one uniting voice, we are children left without a sitter, squabbling, posturing, pushing and shoving. We have lost our way, lost sight of our goals, we are fractured, ill-tempered, and ready to turn on each other. We are mean spirited and grim.
Our institutions fight for themselves and their reputations, not for the public they were created to serve. For instance, in a continuing effort to excuse their excesses, Toronto police dramatically released their Most Wanted List- composed solely of petty criminals and thugs- on a day when a woman is assaulted in a graveyard in broad daylight. Murderers and rapists and child molesters must appreciate the lack of attention and urgency.
I am starting to crave one voice, a voice of reason, of maturity, of gravitas, who can shake off the pack of mayoralty contenders and make us listen up. And can bring our institutions to heel.
Who can say, sternly and with conviction, that the golf courses who've benefited from tax breaks to the tune of $30 million must ante up to provide funds for at-risk children to play and swim and learn. Shame them, name them. And look for other "welfare breaks for the wealthy" hidden in the books. Rob Ford's promise of saving $3 million a year looks pretty penny ante by comparison.
A voice that can admit city council is too large, too unwieldy, too partisan an institution and must undergo reform.
Part of the disquiet I feel is undoubtedly a feature of what's happening in the States, and the clear limits to science and industry's ability to fix the messes they create. And the resurgence of racism disguised as the Tea Party movement, and the continuing efforts of the banks to fleece the public, and how Haiti, six months after the earthquake there, is largely a pile of rubble despite all the king's horses and all the king's men.
These are times that demand real leadership, times that should create a leader. Instead, we have, well, we have what we have. Federally, no real opposition, no real courage, provincially, a leader, a premier who could make a real difference, who could inspire, who could and should live up to the promises he's made to the poor but chooses to turn his back.
We live in dangerous times, we are not immune to the craziness of our over-bearing neighbour, nor are we immune to viruses, and natural disasters, and a tanking economy. We distrust our politicians, and we should, for they are, in the main, more about themselves than the city, or the country. We distrust statements on the economy, and we should, because if a politician wants to enhance his reputation there are millions to be found.
Ask yourself, if there was another SARS type outbreak or something similar, or a natural disaster struck, or God forbid something worse, who would we turn to, who could we depend on to talk us through a dark night of fears and tribulation?
Let's hope there is nothing on the horizon, nothing looming over our heads, cause frankly, you and me, we're on our own, and that's a pretty scary place to be.