McQUARRIE – Federal politics like an episode of Fawlty Towers these days

Basil Fawlty (John Cleese) and Manuel (Andrew Sachs) in Fawlty Towers.

“We’ve been conditioned to think that only politicians can solve our problems. But at some point maybe we will wake up and recognize that it was politicians who created our problems” – Ben Carson

INTERESTING QUOTE made even more interesting given the most recent episode of the Fawlty Towers-like, SNC Lavalin-Liberal Party, not so secret (anymore), affair d’amour.

We find the efforts and desires of the Prime Minister once again thwarted by the public’s annoying fondness for democracy and the rule of law.

But following in the footsteps of the ever-incompetent Basil Fawlty, the Prime Minister takes a problem of his own creation and makes it far worse then even the writers of Fawlty Towers could imagine.

Then, in an attempt to ‘solve’ the problem, justifies his missteps by claiming he was doing it for the good of Canada.

I have this mental picture of a John Cleese-like Prime Minister Trudeau, crouching down with hands grasping his head while he bounces along the floor of his office.  Meanwhile, trusted PMO staffers, much like Manuel, can only run in circles while repeating, “I’m from Barcelona. I know nothing.”

Had there not been the blatant disregard and disrespect for the institution he was elected to represent. Had there not been denial and truth distortion when this corporate love affair was exposed. Had there not been the unembarrassed admission that there are rules for close friends and other rules for the rest of us. Had he showed all Canadians the same kind of loyalty and eager pandering that he does for his rich friends, then maybe things would be different.

But the Prime Minister didn’t and what bothers me even more is the disquieting awareness that the only reason we know these things is because he got caught with both hands in the cookie jar.  How many other empty cookie jars are out there as a result of this self-entitled avarice? What other problems have we paid to solve that were simply the result of political greed?

The school teacher’s sing-songy voice of sunny ways seems like a distant and now troubled memory and the tarnished brand is, like all problems a politician faces, a creation of their own callous disregard for those who once dreamed of a brighter future.

Instead, we got what we always get, a Monty Python skit and a Fawlty Towers caricature. The ineffectualness of Yes Minister, bundled with the clumsy, lying incompetence of a Basil Fawlty. It would be funny if it weren’t for the fact that for Canadians, it is real life.

It doesn’t seem to matter the party. We are lied to on a regular basis and we are ignored and taken for granted when not being lied too. Many of the problems we worry about are, as Ben Carson stated, created for the most part by our politicians.  I would be interested to hear how you think we can change this.

Bill McQuarrie is a former magazine publisher, photojournalist and entrepreneur. Semi-retired and now living in Port McNeill, you can follow him on Instagram #mcriderbc or reach him at

About Mel Rothenburger (7708 Articles) is a forum about Kamloops and the world. It has more than one million views. Mel Rothenburger is the former Editor of The Daily News in Kamloops, B.C. (retiring in 2012), and past mayor of Kamloops (1999-2005). At he is the publisher, editor, news editor, city editor, reporter, webmaster, and just about anything else you can think of. He is grateful for the contributions of several local columnists. This blog doesn't require a subscription but gratefully accepts donations to help defray costs.

3 Comments on McQUARRIE – Federal politics like an episode of Fawlty Towers these days

  1. Yes after listening to Cavers rant I will be sure to vote green. May is long past her prime.

  2. Beverley Campbell // August 18, 2019 at 8:18 AM // Reply

    While I realize the near impossibility of it happening, I long for a complete rearrangement in Ottawa, I long for the kind of government that exists in Jody Wilson Raybould’s head, where elected representatives of ridings serve the people of their riding rather than, as so often happens, come to Ottawa and slink and sink into the same mentality as those already in power. I long for a leader who leads as the President or CEO of a large company does, not to fulfill his or her own agenda or the agenda of close friends BUT who brings the wishes and desires of his/her riding to the forefront, I long for simpler days when cronies disappear and the people rise to be the most important item in anyone’s agenda. Alas, I fear I long in vain.

  3. Ian M MacKenzie // August 18, 2019 at 7:54 AM // Reply

    Vote for Iain Currie and get the Greens working on a credible solution.

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