Tuesday, February 4, 2020


Today's Waterloo Region Record carries the following opinion article by Frank Addario titled "Ford government seeks to return patronage to judge selection". This title contains both good news and bad news. The good news is that allegedly our current judicial (i.e. judges) appointment system is not corrupt (i.e. political at its worst) and the bad news is that (surprise/surprise) some current politicians want a return to the bad old days.

I have long been of the opinion, based upon both personal experience and paying close attention to current events for many decades that the majority of our lawyers have below average ethics/honesty as do the vast majority of our politicians. Therefore how can you possibly appoint an abundance of good, honest, ethical and unbiased judges one from a group whose majority are lacking necessary qualifications (i.e. ethics/honesty etc.) and two when those doing the appointing are even less qualified (i.e. politicians with ethics/honesty and no biases). Oh my goodness but my computer almost shut down when I wrote the words ethics and honesty in the same sentence as politicians.

Based upon the time frame suggested in this article it appears as if the Judicial Appointments Advisory Committee (JAAC) has been around doing good work for about thirty years. The author claims that this committee are far superior than the old pure political appointments of the past. Maybe he's right although I do note that the province (i.e. governing party whether Liberal or Conservative) still appoint roughly half of the members of the public to the JAAC and the rest are appointed by "...the bar and the judiciary.". Hmm this would be the judiciary previously appointed by the Liberal/Conservative parties.

Frankly while there might have been an improvement in the appointments process over the last thirty years based upon merit versus political activity and affiliation it seems still likely that poor candidates have gotten through. If that were not the case then you can bet that smart lawyers (many) would be avoiding the older judges/appointees like the plague in favour of newer/younger appointees. All in all I am not impressed with a system of alleged fairness, honesty, unbiased justice, and rule of law still being in the hands of the most dishonest and unethical (i.e. politicians). There is a reason a particular local, religious group of persons (Mennonites) avoid the courts and prefer to settle grievances among themselves.

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