In Praise of The Politician
Publication
The Empire Club of Canada Addresses (Toronto, Canada), 8 Feb 1990, p. 195-207
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In Praise of The Politician


Why the speaker feels his topic is appropriate and relevant. His description of politicians. The speaker's background. A few excerpts from the press of recent months to illustrate the effects of current attitudes towards politicians. The "overpaid and underworked" issue. Some words about money. The substantial risks that go with the job. A description of what it is like to work in a government environment, and the role that is played by MPs and Ministers, as well as by officials like the speaker. The business of government. The public's observations. Some real situations faced by politicians; decisions and operations of governments subjected every day to the glare of publicity. Public expectations and trying to respond to them. Demands for government action. Some remarks about Parliament. The relationship between Ministers and officials. The decision-making role of politicians. Some concluding observations. The consequences of first-rate people shunning electoral politics as a result of negative public attitudes towards them.