Nunatsiaq Online
LETTERS: Nunavut May 18, 2017 - 10:00 am

Mad Mom says think before you vote for an MLA this fall

"Where is the passion? Where is the vision? Who will move us forward?"

NUNATSIAQ NEWS

Mad Mom here, and what am I mad about now?

Well, elections are coming and it got me to thinking about our present legislative assembly members. It seems to me that this is the weakest bunch we have had yet, since 1999.

Their term has not seen anything much occur; in fact, I can’t seem to remember anything but critical Auditor General reports, not funding the Suicide Prevention Strategy, inquests that show badly, pathetic, crumbling prisons, shipping elders away, allowing inmates to rot in solitary confinement and pulling the wagons in a circle whenever something unethical happens.

Yes, it’s the same old blah, blah, blah and positioning of some, while most MLAs fight to stay awake.

Finance Minister Keith Peterson holds the reins on the money and says no to everyone else and all the members just give up on ideas about confronting him and actually doing something. Peterson dreams in technicolour over his beer and wine stores and the revenue they will produce for him, but is tone deaf when it comes to a treatment centre that people ask for.

The invisible premier continues to remain invisible, too shy to go out and meet constituents, hold town halls and see what people really think. His advisors haven’t had a new thought in years either, which adds to the inertia around him.

Where is the passion? Where is the vision? Who will move us forward?

There are two bright lights in the whole assembly who haven’t gone into comas, who ask the right questions and don’t accept dumb, ready-made answers. Hope they get re-elected. 

The rest should be gone.

Make your vote really count when the territorial elections come around in the fall. Look for someone with ideas, who is sober, thinks before they speak, always cared about their community and is not afraid to stand up and speak up on issues that are important to us all.

Mad Mom
Iqaluit

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(26) Comments:

#1. Posted by Enlighten us on May 18, 2017

Please tell us Angry Mother who are the only 2 MLAs that “care”. I didn’t know that there were 20 MLAs that didn’t care.

I’m not a fan of Peterson at all, I find him to be a little too far to the right of center for my liking, but he has a shitty job. Nunavut only has so much money to go around, if he puts it towards Department A, Department B and C and their proponents are up in arms. You can’t win.

I disagree with your “not funding suicide prevention” complaint. If anything Nunavut wastes way too much money on conferences/symposiums/workshops/reports on suicide (and the people involved aren’t the people at risk) and less money on resolving the problem at its core: improving the lives of those at risk. If anything, Peterson’s precious Beer and Wine store is a step in the right direction. Alcoholism is a huge problem that can lead to tragedy. Banning it hasn’t worked. Beer and Wine stores will help normalize alcohol and the GN seems dead set on educating instead of demonizing.

#2. Posted by Common Sense on May 18, 2017

As far as I am concerned the treatment centre should come from the Health Department not the Finance department. Seems logical to me. One of the people complaining about it is Paul Okalik. Why didn’t he work to get one going when he was Health Minister? You would think that as the top person in the department you would have a stronger ability to make that happen instead of stepping down in a huff and becoming a regular MLA who just whines about things he should have done as a Premier and Minister.

#3. Posted by Ms.Tupak on May 18, 2017

Yes totally agree with this bold statement on the politics of Nunavut. A voiceless Premier has not done us any good. The leader of any organization usually set the stage, this premier Tap has nothing coming out of him.  Next time they will try to get a Kivalliq Premier and that person will be and is a puppet to Keith and yes that will happen for that MLA will get elected.
Do any of the MLA’s have a vision at all? Or Passion? Everyone of all the leaders are scared to say anything critical. They are all scared to look bad ad that’s not leadership. The only agenda item for years have been 1. Polar Bears 2. Residential School 3. Mining
No MP, Sleeping MLA’s and smiling NTI without any teeth.
Next time Vote for someone who cares, will stand up and speak on any issue and not scared to speak up, get interviewed by media on any issue, has opinions, doesn’t care if he/she get bad press, approachable, not self centred, doesn’t just think about hunting and boating…... get some women in

#4. Posted by Knockout Ned on May 18, 2017

And don’t forget the Grays Bay Port and Road Project, which would require Hundreds of Millions of dollars, and wouldn’t connect to a single community.

You’d think the GN could think of a better use for this money, wouldn’t you? I dunno…housing, education, skills training, investments in municipal infrastructure, airports, health care, or any one of a thousand other Government responsibilities…

Why aren’t regular MLA’s crying foul on this? Where are they? What are they doing? What’s wrong with them?

#5. Posted by voter on May 18, 2017

I am satisfied with the representative in my riding. How ever my MLA does out reach, has meetings and asks her constituency how they would like her to vote.
Nunavut has a very low voter turn out. family and friends may vote and the few who care. The vast majority of the population wont even bother and then spend the next few years complaining.

#6. Posted by Drain Nunavut's swamp on May 18, 2017

Drain the government swamp is the cry heard around the world.

Here in Nunavut we need something similar. To drain the same old deputy and assistant ministers and MLA’ s to stop being yes puppets to them.

For example. The year after year voices to have the deputy minister of education replaced. Instead the education deputy minister is further dug in – against the wishes of the people.

There is one, who knows maybe more, deputy / assistant ministers who live part time in Nunavut. Guess if Nunavut Senator gets away with it why not, wink wink. Nunavut is fast slipping before our eyes going back to the days when all outsiders ran Nunavut (NWT) from Ottawa.

Ask your MLA running for election if they will repeal the Forfeiture Act law. If they say No, don’t vote for them.  Forfeiture Act sets up in Nunavut policing for cash. For government to steal your property without you being charged or convicted. Corrupt justice current MLA’s voted for!

#7. Posted by John Ralston Sauloosie on May 18, 2017

Nunavut has the right to a University! Education is the key!

#8. Posted by poor angry mom never happy. on May 18, 2017

I wonder when she will start running for office this angry mom, she is never happy with anyone.

#9. Posted by Winging it! on May 18, 2017

The Government of Nunavut is not working out, it’s just a big flam-jam bamboozled system, no faith in the system.  I wait for the one person who gets elected to make a real change, a good change, the one that will steer the government in a forward direction.  Where are you?  Step up and lead the people!  Tired of leaders that have an opposite agenda.

#10. Posted by Let's stop pretending Consensus government works on May 18, 2017

Seriously.

You have a bunch of MLAs selected to be the Cabinet by the rest of the MLAs. They have next to nothing in common, hardly any staff, they ran on a bunch of incoherent local platforms.

How does the magic of “consensus” turn that into effective government? It doesn’t, and we get the status quo: a government that is well meaning, mildly effective and largely unpopular.

In this system there’s no way to know what you’re voting for so no real political accountability.

MLAs keep choosing to do it this way - hey it’s easier for them, they don’t have to propose viable alternatives just dump on everything the government does. It’s set up to enable political laziness.

And the public? We don’t really complain about it, like Mad Mom we complain about individual politicians and individual decisions they make, without looking at how the system guarantees humdrum results. We get what we deserve.

#11. Posted by hunting and whaling in symbolism on May 18, 2017

#1 well you sure prove the norm of thinkers standing behind Peterson.  He is looking to win.

Peterson asks the question to voters to decide on a booze store:  Do you want to get rid of the bootleggers? vote for a booze store. - Not in touch with ground level life to offer that reasoning as a lead into a vote.

Peterson wears too many hats in the forum of the legislature.  Pulls the strings.  Knows nothing more than to spend money and stares when challenged with meaningful concerns from the floor.

The MLA’s have to use their knowledge of survival in symbolism when in the house.  Think in terms of hunting or whaling and the need to feed the community you represent.  Fight for the needs of your community and cut away the strings that pull you here and there.  Work together and share the cache for the people of Nunavut.  Teach an Inuk to be stronger against the dangers experienced of the hunt before you leave the path as leader for your community.

#12. Posted by Ross on May 18, 2017

Another to do list….1)All the deputy ministers should always reapply for their positions every time we have a Territorial elections and new members get elected. 2) The new ministers should be able to hire their own advisors and be able to get rid of the old advisors. 3)No more hiring transients from the south for Gov. jobs. (Some Gov. departments are run by family’s from the south). I can make a 10 page to do and not to do list, but at least lets start with these….

#13. Posted by Putuguk on May 18, 2017

For passion, vision and for people to move us forward, we should probably not look to an elected official.

We are barking up the wrong tree there.

Be competent, maintain the public trust, be a critical thinker, demonstrate integrity. That is a tall enough order already.

That is how an MLA, a Minister and Premier ought to be. It may be dull as dishwater but it is huge progress. 

Please give us stable and predictable services and decisions.

Plenty of individuals in your homes, on your streets and in your communities with passion and vision to make huge strides for everyone.

You don’t have to sit in a fancy room in Iqaluit yapping at each other to do this.

More and more government and problems keep getting worse.The solution is not different people running government.

The solution is us ponying up and doing things ourselves. Ditch the camp boss mentality.

#14. Posted by pujjuut on May 18, 2017

Right on Mad Mom, keep it up.  You hit the nail on the head every time.  Don’t let the ignorant get you down. We know you are right.

#15. Posted by Selee on May 18, 2017

# 8, she really is right.  I wish she would run for she is not afraid to speak out.

#16. Posted by Afraid on May 19, 2017

#15, “she” is afraid to speak out. Otherwise these letters would be signed with a name.

#17. Posted by Paul Murphy on May 19, 2017

All the arm chair politicians always complaining. But anonymously. Identify yourselves including “Mad Mom”. Quit hiding. Nunatsiaq News you should and must make commentators identify themselves before allowing anyone to post on your site.

If you guys think you can do a better job than Peterson with the limited funding we get run - vote (which most of you don’t). Get off your collective asses and away from facebook and get active.

#18. Posted by Drain Nunavut's swamp on May 19, 2017

Mad Mom over half of Nunavut’s population struggles buying food. So it’s a must we must vote strong stand up to Ottawa candidates, because carbon tax drops on all of us in under a year. 

Our current MLA’s rolled over to Ottawa’s Economic hitman talk. If don’t accept liberal carbon tax, Ottawa will impose one and/or Nunavut’s federal funds will be cut.

Carbon tax will instantly add 12 cents a litre on gas. (Many times more the following years.) Unknown how much for home heating fuel, electricity, air tickets, Iqaluit beer and liquor air shipments. Carbon tax on everything you buy including food.

Why didn’t Nunavut MLA’s stand with Saskatchewan saying NO? Is it because the carbon tax paid comes back to Nunavut Gov.? Though not to us the people who paid.

Meaning carbon tax could pay for the new road to no where in the Kitikmeot region, while carbon taxed hungry people turn to cheap GMO sugar drinks to fill kids tummies?

#19. Posted by Jimmy James on May 19, 2017

So, number 16; what’s your name?

#20. Posted by Sit On This! on May 19, 2017

Our Premier is voiceless, yes, that much is true.

I’m really happy this group of legislative assembly put a stop to the amended Education Act!  Whew, that was a close call!!

I’m really impressed with Pat Arnaqaq though.  She is a tireless hardworking individual for the people of Nunavut!!  She is fluent in Inuktitut, non-Inuk who cares more about Inuit than anyone who’s ever sit there!

#21. Posted by 101 on May 19, 2017

# 16 AND # 17 Maybe “she” or “he” has a government job and sees all the garbage and mental decay up close, but is not allowed to speak.  At least she is trying to warn people so whoever it is is brave enough to do so. Give them some credit; why should they lose their job trying to do something while we do nothing but judge. What have you done lately?
Keep going Mad Mom. We hear you.

#22. Posted by Osprey1 on May 19, 2017

The writer has every reason to be mad about what they see around them - aren’t you? You should be, so start thinking and watching your politicians.
Where is the Nunavut we wanted?
And # 1 the GN did hold some pretty questionable, expensive meetings for people not suicidal, you are right, but the truth is the Inquest that was held turned up the fact that they never did fund the the 5 year Suicide Prevention Strategy that would have offered help to those at risk. This is criminal.  Check your facts and you will see I am correct.

#23. Posted by southern games and rulews on May 21, 2017

#13 there are no trees in Iqaluit.  Rules to play a game the southern way.  Too many ways to play the southern way and how to neglect Nunavut for the people.

#24. Posted by The Last Word on May 21, 2017

This letter from the Mad Mom is an excellent example of everything that is going wrong in Nunavut, especially the problems caused by an uneducated population with childish expectations about what government is supposed to do.

Silly quote from Mad Mom: “The invisible premier continues to remain invisible, too shy to go out and meet constituents, hold town halls and see what people really think. His advisors haven’t had a new thought in years either, which adds to the inertia around him.”

LOL if the premier spent all his time going around holding “town halls” the premier would have no time left in his schedule to actually govern or take care of his other responsibilities.

There are 25 communities in Nunavut and if the premier had a town hall in every community each year it would take up at least 26 weeks of the 52 weeks that make up a year, given how airline schedules work. That leaves not enough time for cabinet meetings, legislative assembly meetings, federal provincial premier meetings, meetings with federal cabinet ministers, meetings with NTI, the RIAs, the municipalities, the chambers of commerce.

So let’s say the premier really did that. What would he learn? Nothing he does not already know because he would hear the same moaning and groaning over and over again from people who do not know anything. This is a childish fantasy from the mind of somebody who still thinks its 1970. Grow up and learn how government really works.

Putuguk #3 is right, good effective government is stable, predictable and boring. Compared to the disaster governments of Paul Okalik and the do-nothing government of Eva Aariak, Taptuna and this group may not be perfect but they have done a pretty good job. This is the best Nunavut government we have had yet.

#25. Posted by The Last Word on May 21, 2017

I’m not finished yet. Just check out this totally false statement:

“His advisors haven’t had a new thought in years either, which adds to the inertia around him”

Totally false. The harm reduction approach to substance abuse is a new idea that this government is implementing through beer and wine stores, which are highly popular based on the plebiscite results.

What’s the matter Mad Mom? Is a 75% majority in a plebiscite not good enough for you? You don’t understand harm reduction? Too bad, because just about every other government in Canada is going the harm reduction route.

The child and youth officer is a new idea too, which Keith Peterson personally fought for as an MLA. What’s the matter Mad Mom? You don’t think children’s rights should be protected? Shame on you for your ignorance.

This government is also taking a refreshing and pragmatic approach to economic development because they realize that job creation is the best answer to poverty in this territory combined with good practical education at the K-12 and adult learning levels. Mad Mom does not seem to realize that the Peter Taptuna government’s policy on economic development is identical to NTI and the RIAs. They want Inuit land to be developed for the benefit of Inuit.

What’s the matter, Mad Mom? You want Inuit to stay poor just like they were back in the 1960 and 1950s?

#26. Posted by wait for the tide on May 21, 2017

#24 #25 The last word will be from Inuit to how Nunavut will grow.  Do you think Nunavut was an obvious grab for southern ways in 1999?  This is not only about the now government but also the lost vision of the 1970’s vision of Nunavut for Inuit.  Always the way of south to tell how all should be by the way of the south.  Big difference between the night and day and the tides in the North and nothing of that kind in the south.

When did the south experience manipulation, financial controllers who tried stopped the development of the southern people from living their culture?  Never.

The last word is only a typical view point of the endless southern thought on how the North is to live and an added brush stroke of the line, “...every other government in Canada is going the harm reduction route.”

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