No Holds Barred

Rodney Mann – The Aquinian

Throughout my career as a student at UNB, I’ve been reading the student publications from both UNB and STU, and aside from an article or two per year, there has never been too much interest in politics, specifically Canadian and provincial politics.

Admittedly, I never saw the importance of politics in my every day life until I was 20. I voted when I turned legal age, but at the time, I never really thought my vote counted or my opinion mattered.

The Liberals were on their way out regardless, and the Conservatives were on their way in (since you know Canada only has two parties).

After the sponsorship scandal came to light, along with other scandals from past governments, I started to take issue with our politicians and their (poor) attempts at serving our best interests.

After all, we pay taxes to get things done, not to have our money squandered for lobbyists and close friends of high-ranking officials.

I come from a multimedia background, my minor being film. I’m heavily rooted in the arts community, and lean to the political left.

Still, I’m not blind to the heartfelt attempts at right-leaning governments to make a positive change in our day-to-day lives.

Some may be quick to point the finger of doubt my way, having never taken a political science course, but we’re all students here, we’re looking to graduate with our major as fast as possible.

My political education just happens to come from hours of daily reading, and an unearthly interest in listening to monotone ministers address the country.

If it’s politics, I’m there.

This summer has been an eventful one with the recession and rising national unemployment hitting its highest point in three decades. From Wafergate to major corporate bailouts for banks and car manufacturers, Arctic sovereignty to Elizibeth May deciding to run out West to the eHealth fiasco – It’s been a rollercoaster ride across the country.

New Brunswick has not been immune to questionable government activity either, having seen the NB Pension Fund lose 13 per cent of its savings, while paying out bonus money to CEOs.

Or how about former Finance Minister Victor Boudreau getting $20,000 to move from Moncton to Fredericton? What about tax cuts despite a large forecasted debt, under the guise of the province’s 2026 self-sufficiency plan?

Yes even our little province can squander tax money without issue.

With more and more inquiries into the spending habits of more and more companies and government bodies, the upcoming months are sure to provide us with enough stories to make our blood boil.

In this column, I will be paying close attention to all of these issues, Canadian politics, provincial politics, scandals, and the politics surrounding our natural resources within our province and beyond.

If any of my readers take issue with anything I say, I invite intellectual debate, and if any of my readers agree with me, then let’s be friends.

I hope everyone’s ready to be informed regardless, because in this column, there are No Holds Barred.

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