“How a snowstorm exposed Quebec’s real problem: social malaise.”
Reading the article I couldn't help but sense the profound disdain and anger that the good professor felt for Quebec society, and although the article was mostly accurate, it had the sense of one written by an author in an altered state or someone unloading on his boss before the inevitable firing.
Of course, once published, the writing was on the wall for the good professor at McGill, an institution on a precipitous decline after itself adopting and installing Quebec values, best represented by the French expression; "Nivler par le bas" or as we say in English "leveling down," the process of making the lowest common denominator the academic standard.
McGill is a university led by Quisling-like administrators petrified of giving offense to its government overlords and French language critics. It is quick to change its academic standards so as to accommodate French students in order to scare off the language hounds.
“Dr. Saleem Razack, assistant dean of admissions for medicine.... .... says McGill would have kept the MCAT requirement if there was a French equivalent. “But we want to make sure there’s no barrier for a major segment of our population.” According to Razack, the regular med school class from undergraduate programs doesn’t have as many francophones as McGill would like....” LINKMcGill University medical school, which lowered admission standards to favour francophones has slid from the best program in Canada, to third, reflecting the sad realty of the effects of affirmative action.
I can only imagine what other 'accommodations' have been made in other faculties.
And so it isn't strange that the good professor was shown the door despite the university denying that it forced the professor out, even in the face of criticism of the apparent assault on academic freedom of expression.
The French press went berserk as is always the case when the Quebec model is attacked, with irrational and unrestrained charges of 'Quebec bashing.'
I wonder if the Quebec Press Council will again censure Macleans magazine for the anti-Quebec article, just as it did over the blockbuster article the magazine ran last year entitled... "The Most Corrupt Province In Canada ."
On second thought probably not, considering that the last fiasco left the Press Council with egg dripping on its face when the allegations made in the article turned out to be more than accurate.
At any rate Anglo apologists like the Montreal Gazette took up the banner of crushing the messenger with a sadly amateur opinion piece by editor in chief Lucinda Chodan that was to be kind, unworthy of a high school journalist. The Gazette
In the piece Chodin claimed that criticizing Quebec is fine for Quebecers, but 'Quebec-bashing' when done by mean-spirited out-of-provincers. She went on to excuse Quebecers lack of charity or volunteerism on the demise of the Catholic Church, some 50 years ago, an argument akin to the 'dog ate my homework.'
Most of the attacks over the article were based on two small factual errors which in and of themselves were minor. The author claimed that Quebec ATMs distribute $50 bills to facilitate the underground economy and that restaurants routinely offer discounts for cash.
The attacks based on these small errors reminds me of the lawyerly practice of picking apart the devastating testimony of a witness in court wherein a small discrepancy is blown up out of proportion to discredit the entire testimony.
And by-the way, the practice of cash payment in restaurants was so pervasive in Quebec, that the government installed a draconian system of electronic surveillance of restaurant payments, via government mandated billing machines that connects restaurants directly to the tax department. A small army of vicious tax inspectors prowl restaurants clandestinely buying food to make sure that the billing system is used and that every customer is issued a government receipt.
What other province does this?
And by the way, most hair salons and barbershops in Quebec are notorious for practicing the art of 'cash' payments,' so much so that the government is contemplating installing the same type of controlled billing machines. The only caveat is that the attached government inspectors would be obliged to get a haircut or perm to establish the bone fides of the billing system, a prospect not altogether practicable.
As for $50 bills in ATMs, they have recently become rare, with Canada Trust one of the few institutions that provide the bills routinely.
Perhaps the banks are under pressure by the government to no longer provide them.
At any rate, the ad hominem attack on the author and the picky argument over the minor errors were nothing more than an attempt to deflect, a concerted effort to obscure the argument made in the piece, that Quebec suffers from social malaise, a subject worthy of legitimate debate.
So the question remains; is Quebec in a situation of social malaise?
social malaiseNow let us not mince words;
- a feeling of pervasive dissatisfaction and disgruntlement
-problems and difficulties acting together which are causing a bad situation.
-a vague awareness of moral or social decline.
Quebecers are more dependent on government because that is what they voted for...the nanny state and all that it entails and all that it breeds.
Quebecers are less generous than Canadians and volunteer less because Quebecers view these responsibilities as the government's.
Quebecers work many less hours than other Canadians because the money is less important than the free time.
Quebecers ship their parents off to senior homes at a rate twice that of Canada because personal and familial responsibility has been bred out of them.
Quebecers save for their childrens' education at a rate half of that of parents in British Columbia and 65% of Quebec parents don't contribute a dime (other than general taxes) to their children's higher education.
I could go on and on, but the question remains... Is this a sign of social malaise?
I think not..
That's just the way Quebecers order their lives and they generally feel right about it, far from the definition of social malaise.
As for Canadians judging them as socially backward...well as the saying goes ...Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
And let us remember that like an over-indulgent parent, it is Canadians that help fund these excesses through those naughty equalization payments.
I mean really, if your parents gave you an overly-generous allowance as a teen, would you seek a part-time job at McDonalds?