A cautionary tale of Madame McGuinty’s Teflon Academy


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While some individuals who, in the past, have been the centre of attention in this corner are likely less than over-joyed, City Scope returns after a three-week hiatus. The words of encouragement directed this way during that time are greatly appreciated and, rest assured, the good fight will continue.
Let’s begin with a cautionary tale from the iPad of Bob McCaig, in an effort to illustrate Ontario’s economic plight.
Madame McGuinty’s Teflon Academy, was an instrument of power, seeing to the needs – some carnal – of a discerning clientele, trading power for money and money for power,” McCaig begins.
“The men and women who visited her house of leisure, both day and night, nodding acquaintances in public, were often the best of friends, or at least of convenience, behind closed doors.

Bob continues, “The Teflon Academy provided much more than the standard bill of fare to a very select clientele. For money and exclusive patronage, Madame McGuinty and her operatives would perform tricks unavailable anywhere else.
“Why nowhere else? Because nobody could do for the clientele what McGuinty could do. Her clientele included the best paid people in society. They had to be – the symbiotic relationship that existed between her business and their seemingly insatiable needs – demanded that both she and they perform at a mutually optimal rate, year in and year out.
“And, both sides did, for nine years; cleaving to each other with all the fervor of newlyweds. Then things started to go bad – not just as in some of the help got sick and couldn’t work for a few days. No, this was an epidemic that could kill the business that Madame McGuinty and company had built up over the past decade.”
In breathless fashion, Bob recounts: “It started as a whisper. Madame had, in the normal course of business, received her house accountant, who had just returned from an appointment with the house physician, who had reviewed all the tests that had been approved and funded by the accountant. Both blind and double blind studies confirmed the agreed-upon diagnosis.
“Every single client, operative and hanger-on to the house of McGuinty and company, why it was said that even the dog on the mat at the door of McGuinty and company, had STD.
“Now, in a realistic organization this diagnosis would have demanded and received the prescribed antidote.”
The plot thickens, as Bob continues: “Ms. McGuinty was sure in her own mind that although the whole organization suffered from STD, that together, she and the most powerful collection of self-serving takers ever assembled could solve the problem.
“Neither I, nor any of my people, will submit to the prescribed treatment, said a client educator. Teachers were the perennial favourite of Ms. McGuinty, who’d had a lot to say in the papers in the past in deference to the house of McGuinty. STD be damned, McGuinty, you brought it on yourself. My people are not to blame, and the client educator stormed out of the house.
“This is no big deal. STD’s are easy to cure. Just don’t expect us, said the teachers, nor us said the physicians, the hospital administrators, their senior staff, nor any healthcare group that was in on the deal or the policemen or the firemen or indeed any group, be it private or public, who had courted, supped, paid admission to, or for services or sought succor at McGuinty’s were prepared to help beat the STD they all suffered from.
As we draw to the conclusion, Bob details how “Poor Madame McGuinty assumed any position, regardless how painful, turned every imaginable trick, smiled and cavorted, defended and befriended. And now, to a man, they had turned on this old war horse and put her in her place . . . thrown her out like the stinky old dog she had, overnight, become.
“Everything Madame McGuinty did, every move she made was strictly for the benefit of herself, and her power structure. And she did it all with your money – and an STD.
“What’s that you say? Why it’s simple friend – an STD means we’re suffering a Substantial Tax Deficit.”
How lucky we are, indeed, to have Uncle Bob McCaig to explain the complexities of provincial politics in such illustrative fashion.
ANYONE YOU KNOW?
St. Thomas Energy Inc. is looking to fill a vacancy on its board of directors.
Among other things, prospective candidates must understand the fiduciary duties of a director and exhibit high ethical standards, with a strong sense of integrity, fairness and responsibility.
We can think of several current and former members of the various St. Thomas Energy Inc. boards who wouldn’t pass this litmus test.
PENSION PUNCH-UP
A dandy dialogue, via letters to the editor this week, pitting MP Joe Preston against reader Bill Sandison regarding ‘puffed up’ MP pensions.
It left off with Preston advising his government “will make adjustments” to those pensions.
The proof is in the pudding, counters Sandison.
“Preston’s government has been in power for almost seven years and has done nothing to reduce MP pensions, so let’s have some openness and transparency,” he writes Friday in an email
“During his years as an MP, how much is Preston’s pension projected to be and how much of that did he contribute.
“As for his non-responsive letter, it is just like talking to him in person on pensions; my letter was about pensions not wages, economic growth, the budget, transfers to provinces or taxes.
“His comment about leading by example on pensions is delusional.”
Oh my, what a way to mark the return of City Scope.
QUOTE OF THE WEEK
“I have served the St. Thomas community for well over 10 years and so the decision is very disappointing and I will be taking active steps to address the zoning issue.”
St. Thomas resident Kelly Mersereau, following city council’s decision Tuesday to reject her application for a zoning bylaw amendment to permit continued operation of her barrister and solicitor office on Metcalfe Street.

City Scope appears Saturday in the Times-Journal. Comments and questions may be emailed to ian.mccallum@sunmedia.ca.

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One thought on “A cautionary tale of Madame McGuinty’s Teflon Academy

  1. He may be your “Uncle Bob”, Ian, but he’s not mine, so I much prefer your column when it’s written by you, reflecting your views, your own personal “scope” of things going on within our city than to have Mr. McCaig’s view of things once again. In the past I’ve let you know on occassion how much I like your column and your perspective of local politics, so I’m taking the time to let you know now that if I wanted to know Bob McCaig’s views on politics or anything else, I’d read his column…Oh yea, he doesn’t have one. You do.

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