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Ruth Ellen Brosseau: Canadian election result

If only all politics could work this way:

One of the winners from Quebec on Monday night, Ruth Ellen Brosseau, works in a bar in Ottawa, does not speak French, and may not have ever visited her district, Canadian press reported. She also spent part of the campaign on holiday in Las Vegas – but she still took 40% of the vote.

Nice way to pick up a $157,000 salary, isn\’t it? Never having to attend a constituency meeting, never having to rub hands with the voters?

Actually, I have a sneaking suspicion that she\’ll do very well:

Ruth Ellen Brosseau (born c. 1983[1]) is the New Democratic Party Member of Parliament-elect for Berthier—Maskinongé.

A single mother of two children from Gatineau,[2] Brosseau held the position of assistant manager for Oliver\’s Pub, a bar on the campus of Carleton University in Ottawa.[3]

Assistant manager is, so I hear, a polite manner of stating senior cocktail waitress.

And as a single mother of two, who has actually worked in the rough and tumble of the real world, I suspect she\’ll nkow more about said real world than entire armies of our likely new generation of MPs. You know, Will Straw who has been known to claim that running a blog on a union paycheque, with one intern, is experience of running a small business. Sunny who seems to have spent the last decade as a blog activist.

And yes, I\’d give you very good odds that they\’ll both be MPs soon enough, you can see them girding themselves for the selection to a safe seat process.

That we can all think of barmaids who would do a better job than either of those two just indicates quite how well Ruth might do.

I should also point out that when I\’m made dictator (I promise, Cincinnatus like, to resign the moment things are sorted) one of the laws I\’ll leave behind is that no one may stand for any political office unless they\’ve served a full year as bartender or waitron unit.

Until you\’ve seen ,repeatedly, the Great British Public gorging and getting drunk you have absolutely no idea at all about how they might be well governed.

3 thoughts on “Ruth Ellen Brosseau: Canadian election result”

  1. *cough* I live with a barmaid that’s thinking of running for MP at some point.

    OK, she’s also got the postgrad law degree that means she can call herself barrister but not practice (bloody restrictive practices, Friedman was right) but…

    And there are quite a few bars where the term ‘assistant manager’ actually means ‘manager’ or ‘person in day-to-day charge’ these days, at least over here, I know one local landlady is ‘manager’ of about 5 pubs, each has a live in assistant who does most of the day-to-day. So depends on context and site &c

  2. Does working in a chippy count? For a glimpse of the GBP in all its Hogarthian horror, flogging cod ‘n’ chips to coachloads of ’em from a seafront hole in the wall can’t be rivalled (and at well below what Polly would call a living wage – curiously this did not mean I was clamorous for a minimum wage since back then even £2 an hour was better than the dole.)

  3. David Gillies wrote:

    ‘For a glimpse of the GBP in all its Hogarthian horror, flogging cod ‘n’ chips to coachloads of ‘em from a seafront hole in the wall can’t be rivalled . . ‘

    “I vant plaice.

    Und I don’t vant any nasty, soggy chips. I vant mine crisp, und light brown . . . ”

    I would think that a barmaid would have more real-world experience than a half-a-hundred of the regular sort of person that seeks elected office.

    I’d like to see every single person who is elected to legislative office ride along for a month on Late Turn with their local constabulary. To see the people as they really are, not as they were taught at University.



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