Thursday, April 26, 2012

Let Them Drink Orange Juice

I can't help myself. I just have to express my thorough disgust at the news that "my" member of federal parliament, international development minister Bev Oda, charged excessive amounts to an expense account while in London, Great Britain. The five star hotel in which she was scheduled to lay her privileged head was not good enough for her, so she upgraded to the Savoy -- twice as expensive to all of us of course. And while she didn't have far to travel during her stay she chose to use an expensive limousine rather than anything as plebian as a taxi. Oh yes, there is the sixteen dollar glass of OJ.

Ms. Oda managed to be reelected in this riding despite lying about her part in cancelling funding for Kairos, a highly respected advocacy and support agency for international development in which our United Church participates. The cancellation of funding was incredibly mean-spirited on the part of the feds and the lies compounded the situation.Oda has now paid back her London excesses, but only after they came to light in an embarrassing fashion. What a piece of work. This is so wrong. A letter to the editor in the Globe and Mail pointed out that a two cent a day pill prevents blindness for a child in Africa but this government minister feels an extraordinary sense of entitlement. While Ms. Oda has apologized since the story broke, it's difficult to accept it as sincere.

Does anyone else think this stinks or am I just not turning my taxpayer's cheek?


IanD said...

I am not a (C)onservative by any means, but I always try to consider the other side's point of view. In this case, though, it's hard not to get hot under the collar.

Sense of entitlement it is, but this episode also speaks volumes about the insular nature of Ottawa and its political culture. The city and that scene literally are a world unto themselves and Ms. Oda's mentality has clearly been coloured (augmented, some might say) by having worked in that world for so long.

Nancy said...

So true Ian!! As more and more cuts are made, jobs are affected and the mood amongst our federal workers at the moment is not good. They are all on edge and fearful of job loss. A friend who works for the Health minister works in an office where all but two got letters of notice, and other friends who work for National Parks are on edge as this government cuts employees there. They are fearful that this government wants to develop our parks. Right down to home, where my spouse is in an office where jobs are being eliminated and people do not know what the future holds!! Slash and burn for those of us who are the gophers, but spend, spend, spend for politicians!

roger said...

It IS an outrage! We can only guess how many millions of dollars are wasted like this that we never hear about.

I will remember this during the next election. It would be nice to have someone who doesn't have a sense of entitlement, and who is concerned about taxpayer dollars.

I will be writing to Oda...and I recommend everyone who feels strongly about what she did, do the same.

janet.rice said...

This kind of faux pas occurred prior to the last federal did Bev Oda manage to be re-elected with a majority?

janet.rice said...

I await an answer to my question!!!

roger said...

There is definitely no answer to that question, Janet. But what we CAN do is let her know that we will not forget about her contempt for the taxpayer and her sense of entitlement.

Go to her website at and let her know what you think!

Kathy said...

There are so many things wrong. That she was relected, when her tampering with the document was known. That she was rewarded by staying in cabinet.
There is no honour here -- mainly arrogance. I think they know that their supporters don't condemn this, rather their supporters love their Cons being in power and sticking it to the opposition.
It's a sad state of affairs.

lionlamb said...

I think that both Roger and Kathy offer good insights in response to your question Janet. I fear that Canadians have grown so cynical and apathetic about politicians that a situation such as Oda's reelection can occur.

So much for righeous indignation. Great responses all!