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Pick me! I’m free for an unelected position, too

I have been thinking recently about the appointmment of Judy Manning by the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador to the cabinet as justice minister of all and everything.

The front entrance area and floors directly above it at the Confederation Building on Prince Philip Drive remain shrowded as workers on the inside continue the renovations to the province’s legislative building.

Now, where is the justice in that you may ask? To be honest, I don’t know and you can quote me on that.

This is my first political statement with many more to come, I hope.

Today, I have a stupendous, a large, a magnificent, a Churchillian announcement to make to the people of Newfoundland and Labrador and especially to the seniors of this great and wonderful province; I want to be your representative in government.

If the premier is inclined to make any more appointments of everyday, ordinary citizens with little to no experience in municipal, provincial or federal politics like the aforementioned Ms. M, then today, I officially offer myself to be put on the list for consideration for the next appointment.

If the premier can pull a Manning out of the hat, then he can also have a Dwyer for hire.

I have consulted with my spin doctors at our local coffee shop and I must say I was overwhelmed by the unanimous support of the six seniors who sat/leaned against the table, (well, five if you leave me out. After all, I wouldn’t vote for myself).

I also want to make it perfectly clear from the outset that seniors were well represented around the square table: three male and three female, all grandparents, pensioners, educated, overeducated, undereducated and all officially unemployed, all with cellphones in hand waiting for a call from son or daughter to pick up the grandchild or grandchildren and bring them to the dentist, pool, skating, etc., and don’t forget the diapers. Crap.

Let me be clear, if called by the current, innovative premier, I would like to be appointed to the cabinet in the new Department of Seniors and Beyond which I will create after my first week in office.

I will accept the current base salary of $100,000 per year and the bonus money of $20,000 or $30,000 as cabinet minister.

I make this pledge if appointed: I will donate my cabinet salary named above to any seniors’ charity in NL.

I’ll have to get my people to make a list and ensure that they check it twice — after all, it’s the peoples’ money.

I will be more than happy with my $100,000, as it is far more than I currently make as a pensioner, unlike Ms. M, who claimed that she took her position in the cabinet at half the amount she was making as a lawyer.

Like, why would you do that? Ego?

If the current minister can operate from the gallery, then there shouldn’t be any reason why I can’t operate from Gander. I will, however, be willing to attend caucus meetings once a month with the usual conditions applied going forward. I want my travel, meals and accommodations covered at the current government rate.

After all, I will be doing the peoples’ work and I expect to be paid accordingly. I will not stay at my sister’s house. I don’t care what you say, I will have none of that — no freebies.

As far as other credentials are concerned, I am well-educated and well-spoken and could handle a scrum with the media with ease.

I have been practicing now for a week: “David, could you repeat that question, please, I wasn’t listening to you;” “I’ll have my staff look into that as we speak, if not sooner;” “I refuse to answer that at this time, I left my notes at the coffee shop”; and this one will really show the media I am in command of the situation: “Hey, look who just came in the door?” When they look to see who it is, I’ll beat it to the elevator and up to the eighth floor or, if in Gander, well, there is nowhere to hide in Gander.

There you go, just like that, an entreprenurial opportunity. Very innovative, I’m about creating jobs; we need higher buidlings in Gander and throughout the province.

I will not accept anything less than two storeys and you can quote me on that.

“Higher Buildings, More Jobs” will be be my new catchall phrase.

I also expect to look as good as any of them, especially Mr. Ball. I have three good suits which I haven’t worn for years with matching ties and white shirts. They just need a good pressing and a spray or two of Febreeze.

I have to admit there is some male pattern baldness; well to be truthful, there is a lot of male pattern baldness but I am committed to changing that if appointed and if necessary.

My granddaughter of eight years of age suggested that I have the top of my head tattooed to look like I have hair. I suggested her creative and forward-thinking idea to my people and they unaniously thought it was a great idea which would certainly capture the wavering youth support.

They also suggested that we should keep her in mind for a future cabinet position, if not a parliamentary assistant, at least.

I promise you, the people of NL, this will be the kind of creative leadership and out-of-the box thinking that I will bring to the cabinet as the new Minister of Seniors and Beyond and you can quote me on that.

For now, let me finish by saying I am open to joining Dwight Ball if he is listening. I show no favouritism.

 I do like red, in fact, my car is red and I do have one red jacket; well, there’s a little blue but not much, so that should fit in nicely when we travel around; people will know us by our red cars and red jackets.

Again, very innovative and forward thinking; my people have really dedicated themselves to this campaign which we will lay out for all in the coming months, if not sooner.

When Mr. Ball becomes premier in 2015, I want him to know that I can step in at a moment’s notice, if and when his cabinet starts to falter and crumble like the current PC cabinet. It will happen, believe me, it always happens. Your future minister in the new portfolio for seniors and beyond, thank you.


P.J. Dwyer writes from Gander.

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