Stephen Harper intends to dumb down the Order of Canada (Order of Canada reform in budget, Apr 23). The Prime Minister is correct in his belief that certain sectors of society are under-represented such as discredited Conservative senators and inhabitants of the yahoo element. The reported feeling is that there is too much Margaret Atwood and too little Don Cherry among Order recipients.
By coincidence, elsewhere in today's National Post (Where culture wars were worth fighting), we read, "A TV-ready image is valued considerably more than any literary pedigree . . . People today go to pundit school. They learn how to be on TV as a pundit, but they don't have any substance. Intelligence has been replaced by volume."
Honours are not intended to be brought "closer to the people," as Harper asserts. Their purpose is to recognize quality achievements to which we should all aspire. Is it time to bid farewell the nobility of the Order of Canada?