The resignation this week of Canada's Chief Electoral Officer, Jean-Pierre Kingsley, brings to mind the high-level bureaucrat's long-time appetite for remaking democracy in his own image… which turns out to be a pretty astonishing ambition for someone legislatively prohibited from voting himself. But in a country where no general interest remains in observing or recalling even statutory limits on power, it is no wonder that Kingsley would have chosen not to interpret a legislated prescription of his duties as anything resembling constraints or limitations on his authority. On the contrary, the lack of specific circumscription is taken to be an invitation to participate in the stage where powers are negotiated and distributed; that is, politics, where to whit Kingsley's 17-year tenure had included at the very least:
Whether Kingsley resigned for his own reasons or whether he was somehow pushed out by the Conservatives is a tabloid question deserving of the non-answer that we're likely to get from it. The significant observation is that the subject's very disputability is is indicative of how politicized Kingsley had made his position as an Officer of Parliament. Good riddance to a bad politician… but it would be absurd to suppose that his successor will any more refrain from enjoying the the informal expansion of political authority that Kingsley obtained without much trammels or scrutiny for an office on which there are almost no checks.
*I do note that the House of Commons passed a resolution in 2004 enjoining the Chief Electoral Officer to employ these extra-curricular discriminatory practises… more fools, them.
Saturday, December 30, 2006
Posted by MapMaster on Saturday, December 30, 2006