Feb 07/13

Gilles Surprenant


Well, we had quite a storm last night: rattling windows, pounding rain, etc. Winter's been mild this year, to be sure; however, it's hanging on. The daily highs are hanging around 6 or 7, with the lows 2 to 3.

Gilles Surprenant was the first interviewee I saw on the Charbonneau Inquiry. Charming and light-hearted, he nevertheless painted the picture they had hoped for. I enjoyed his testimony. Moreover, his French was easy for me to understand. I was sad to see him go.

When a corrupt system is exposed, society tends to get angry at the participants. "I was just fitting in" just doesn't seem good enough in such cases. I'm asking if it's fair to blame someone for fitting in, when from the cradle that's what people are directed to do.

I've never fit in: today, I'm a sole proprietor. I've always been criticized for failing to conform.

When Gilles was hired, it was doubtless because he seemed an easy fit with the bureaucratic culture. An assertive, "do-it-my-way" type likely never would have got the job. How can we blame people for failing to take independent action, when they were chosen in the first place because they would assimilate?

In this era, when being a "team player" is of paramount importance, it's hard for me to find fault with Gilles.

Here's Gilles. You be the judge.

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