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Ricky Blue's Other Life
Ricky Blue
Ricky Blue
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is a Montreal-based humorist, singer, and writer. He and partner George Bowser are the famous Bowser and Blue comedy act. Here's his bio from their Bowser and Blue website.

Ricky Blue was born in Liverpool, England, but raised in Maine, New Jersey, and Toronto. He has an MA in English from Concordia University. He has been involved in bands and media music in Montreal for over twenty years. In 1981 he won an international 'Clio' award for excellence in advertising.

He once appeared on television naked.

His life had no real meaning, however, until he began to play with Bowser and Blue. Rick plays guitar, mandolin, and harmonica, and sings in a rather pleasant baritone when George will let him.

His columns are archived here

Posted 04.22.05

RICKY BLUE

Follow the money, see the sleaze

A CEGEP teacher with a PhD and fifteen years experience makes the same as a Montreal bus driver. I ask myself: Is this a triumph of our egalitarian society or merely a sad commentary on how little we really value education?

In Canada today a nuclear physicist will make about the same money as a plumber. Of course you don't go into nuclear physics for the money. You go into nuclear physics because you are fascinated by quarks.

But I would expect a plumber goes into plumbing for the money. Surely you don't go into plumbing because you are fascinated by sewage. If you are fascinated by sewage, you go into politics.

Just watch the Gomery soap opera and you will see where the real money is. Millions of tax dollars are washing around our government coffers looking for pockets to flow into.

About half the salary of a CEGEP teacher, a Montreal bus driver, a nuclear physicist and even a plumber will end up going to one of our governments; either in income, property, water, school, GST or some other creative taxation scheme. So then where does it all go?

Judge John Gomery is showing us where some of it goes. It's not pretty, is it?

But how can it be otherwise? As long as we keep giving our governments so much money there will be corruption. This kind of easy money attracts the criminal element in our society.

What other field offers so much money for doing so little work? Compared to the Gomery gang of invoice-writers, drug dealers are workaholics.

And why are we surprised? Does the Canadian public actually think that only the pure and chaste work for the government?

That's like believing that only the pure and chaste go into the priesthood.

These people are all human. They are subject to the same corruptibility that all flesh is heir to. Let us allow our system to work and flush out the lawbreakers. But let's not freak out.

Polls and headlines suggest that the Bloc will sweep Quebec in the next election. It might as well say: "Sell your house now!" Get a grip! We Quebecers are in complete denial if we only blame the Liberals.

You could as easily blame Quebec. It was Quebecers in Ottawa who funneled taxpayers' money into Quebec to try to counter the Quebec separatist propaganda dominating Quebec after the referendum in Quebec and it was Quebecers who stole it and kicked it back to other Quebecers. Saying the Liberals are corrupt is like saying Quebec is corrupt. Besides, what's the theft of a few million dollars by the Liberals compared to the Bloc Quebecois' plan to steal our country?

Scandals have happened before and they will happen again. No matter whom we elect. Can you say "Airbus?" We are fooling ourselves if we let the opposition parties use this one as an opportunity to grab power.

Education is supposed to teach us these things: the lessons of history, ancient and modern. Perhaps if we valued education more and forced our government to spend more of our tax dollars on it we would know this. But we value a teacher no more than a bus driver.

So we haven't heard George Santayana's warning that those who ignore history are destined to repeat it. Or are we really looking forward to a third referendum?

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