CANADA’S CLASS SYSTEM IN ACTION
I think history will be much kinder to Rob Ford than Canada is being right now. I am not a Rob Ford fan, bluster and bluff and bullying turn me off, spoiled-brat juvenile antics turn me off, but I think he is getting a raw deal, with the grotesquely over-the-top scrutiny of his every moment, at a cost of millions of our tax dollars.
This is not a local issue, though it might have some local relevance, but my sense of fairness prompts me to offer this contrarian point of view.
Back in my university days, a lifetime ago, an Art exhibition appeared on the University of Manitoba campus. A couple of my classmates went to see, and came back talking about what a load of baloney it was (well, baloney was not quite the word they used). After some discussion, we came up with a class project wherein we all kicked in to buy an authentic canvas and real artists’ paint and supplies. Some of our boys contributed their talents (?) and produced a piece of ‘modern art’, which was signed “M. E. Troisieme”, a thinly veiled moniker for ‘third year mechanical engineers’. They smuggled it into the art exhibit, and it survived almost till the end of the show before it was detected as a fraud. Our boys would loiter around pretending to be art critics to listen to the comments of the Artsy folks, and these were no more critical of our fraud than of the genuine paintings posted there. Comments like ‘oh, this one strikes an emotional chord’, or ‘evocative of a storm looming over a battlefield’, or ‘look at the interplay of pastels and strong colour on this one’, but no comments like the ones in our lab, which were more like ‘evocative of a dog’s breakfast, regurgitated on a kitchen floor’.
This story is to illustrate that Canada’s class system is mostly about pretentious nonsense. You don’t have to be smart or successful to be part of the Ruling Class, but you must at least pretend to understand the ‘finer things’. You must pay homage to the latest politically correct causes. You must behave according to standards, golf and skiing are good, while going hunting is definitely a no-no; wine is good but beer is not unless it is ‘artisan beer’; symphony or ballet or modern art are good, wrestling not so good; Bingo is definitely out while Las Vegas is de regeur; camping is out but cruises are ok; and above all you must accept that whatever CBC says is really news and actual fact.
The Ruling Class has been indignant ever since Ford got elected, he doesn’t even try to be one of them, no pretentions at all. They see this as simply intolerable, our nation is embarrassed, something must be done. These latte sippers of course dominate in our national media, hence the media’s cruel intrusion into Fords personal life.
For example, good-old-boy Ford is crucified for his indiscretions regarding drugs, while the ruling class thinks it cool if its own members participate in the same game. Hypocrisy rules.
What would they say if Forest Gump were elected mayor?