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by Lynne Boldt
January 1, 2003

In Praise of Common Sense


     2003! A new year full of new dreams, ambitions and goals. A year full of new obstacles, challenges and triumphs! Will this be the year the residents of Victoria County restore grass roots democracy? Will this be the year that "accountable" and "responsible" become words of accolades that people strive to achieve?

As we prepare to embark on 2003, may we all pause for just a moment, draw in a big breath of clean, unpolluted air and reflect on two very small but powerful words - Common Sense. I'm not a Rhodes scholar, I don't extol any qualifications as a political science graduate, nor have I ever aspired to become Premier of Ontario or Prime Minister of Canada. I have no political or financial indebtedness to any politician or political party at any level. What I do profess to have is only what I believe in my heart, and what my parents taught me many years ago - I like to think I "use my common sense". I have never been expelled from school, I have never been incarcerated, and to the best of my knowledge it was not because I was perfect or special, it was simply because when push came to shove, my own "common sense" has given me the answers I needed to avoid such drastic consequences.

Would you attempt to participate in a marathon wearing shoes three sizes too small? If you answered 'no' to that simple question, then see --- you also, have common sense! When I hear of hundreds of thousands of dollars being paid to "facilitators" and "consultants" to tell us what we should be thinking or doing it frightens me. When we, as intelligent human beings no longer have the "common sense" to think for ourselves, including the ability to reason and analyze then I can only be left to fear for the future of our county, country or even our world. This applies to everything from the environment, to economic development, to real hard things like whether we need a coat on a snowy day, to politics. Yep, that's right - politics!

Maybe the reason so many people voted to give the Tories the majority government they have enjoyed to date were the promises of a "Common Sense Revolution"? Hopefully those words can still strike a nerve in us when our own common sense tells us today - something is wrong. When something is wrong common sense also tells us to fix it.

As to the promised local Referendum and common sense --- when you hear the "pro-CoKL" people saying we can't restore Victoria County and her 16 municipalities because it wasn't working either -- hopefully, common sense will tell you - of course we can! The same common sense will tell you that once we go back, THEN the locally elected representatives will be in the perfect positions to make the "responsible" decisions while being directly "accountable" to the local ratepayers. Hopefully, common sense will tell you that one person out of 17, residing in Manvers can not, and should not, always make the most responsible decision for a resident of Carden.

Here's to everyone's own personal "Common Sense Revolution" in this welcoming New Year of 2003! May everyone enjoy good health and happiness.


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