The Upcoming Plebiscite on Electoral Reform.

Why is electoral reform needed, what is wrong with the old first passed the post system???Well there are so many things wrong with FPTP its hard to know where to start. zflagpeiLets take a look back over the last several years of elections. Do you remember when the Conservatives swept to power with Ron MacKinley the lone Liberal elected, he was the opposition?  then Pat Mella was the lone Conservative opposition! Its a history of back to back Liberal-Conservative governments. We get mad at the Liberals and they are swept from power, then we get mad at the Conservatives and do likewise to them. I the meantime these two party’s play the patronage game at Islanders expense. Liberals come to power and oust the blue faithful from their cozy well paying government jobs replacing them with their friends and supporters. It has been going on for about-the-premierdecades and to call it democracy would really be stretching the meaning of the word. Who remembers all the boondoggles these two party’s have wrought on us. Not just the recent ones such as  Plan B,Geo Sweep, PNP, HST, and the very latest a bypass that doesn’t actually bypass. Remember when we had a Mag Wheel manufacturer in the Industrial Park, a firm that produced glasses with leather frames, fish plants, golf courses, a system for administering inoculations without a needle. I’m sure you can remember many other similar firms that came here at the governments invitation, got their money and ran.

We badly need a new system, a system that does not constantly give one of the two main party’s a majority in each election. Indeed with these majorities we don’t get democracy we Caudillo goneget a dictatorship. Which ever government is in power they can do more or less as they please. Robert Ghiz operated without restriction, how about his very questionable E Gaming scheme for which he later was forced to resign over. His Minister of Finance Wes Sheridan, telling us we needed HST for a level playing field? Like Ghiz, he disappeared over the horizon with his fat severance package, probably laughing all the way to the bank. I just hope and pray that the majority of islanders pay attention to this Plebiscite and understand what is at stake.

Be absolutely certain neither the REDS OR BLUES want to see a form of proportional representation become the norm. They will do everything they can to muddy the waters and make the choices seem difficult hoping many islanders will just stay with the current system.The premier has already made his views very public. When we enter the polling station for this plebiscite we will be faced with a ballot paper with five choices. In my opinion there is only two real choices, (1)Dual Membership Proportional. (2)Mixed Member Proportional. and then we have the rest . First-past-the-post (current system). First past the post plus leader. and finally Preferential voting. So what do you think??? complicated yes, intentional so, yes again, but we can over come. In my upcoming blogs I will attempt to simplify these choices and why I suggest we go for options 1 and 2 DMP-MMP

Take a moment to view this video

God Bless and keep reading

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Shipmates Reunited, New FB group

image005[1]White Ensign on HMS BelfastWhen I saw the name of this group I naturally took interest, its fun reuniting with old ship mates from so many years ago. My problem was not reading the rules applied by the apparent owner of the group. I guess we should all pay more attention before entering a social media group. However, I think I can forgive myself for not reading the rules first, after all what rules could apply to reuniting with a few old shipmates. The following day another member was kicked out for saying something derogatory about the Royal Canadian Legion! Wow, I was surprised, I have said numerous things about the legion that would certainly be considered derogatory! It was time to read the group rules,  they are copied below

Ok guys if i share Royal Canadian Legion posts especially ref the Poppy fund i will not Tolerate abuse about Legion or Comrades. Your comment will be deleted and you will be kicked off my Fb. So if you wish please unfriend, Thank you

Wow! so much for shipmates reuniting and so much for tolerance or is that intolerance. I find it very offensive to be told I must not express an opinion opposed to the group owners views or be kicked off!!!! What bothers me is the site is supposed to be about sailors and for sailors. I recall my time in the Royal Navy and remember my shipmates were a very tolerant lot. Indeed, I cannot imagine living within the confines of a submarine with 50 or 60 other crew members and being intolerant. Well maybe at tot time we might have pushed our opinions a wee bit, but you can’t live with the same guys for two years and not be tolerant of there opinions and beliefs. You might notice I have not given the name of the owner of this IMG_0001group, that’s because I’m very tolerant!!! Nevertheless, he probably will not buy a copy of my book???????

God Bless and keep reading

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Note :- How The Guardian Edit Letters to the Editor?????

This is my letter as it was sent in to the papers,  titled “Bottling plant flies under the radar”it was published in today’s guardian (26th Sept 2016)with one significant sentence missing ? No sure about the Journal as I have not seen a copy yet. Nevertheless, the missing sentence does concern me,zflagpeiabout-the-premier

Here is my letter as written


While I certainly do not minimize the seriousness of the island wide school bomb threat and its media coverage it does seem all other island news has ceased or just faded away. It has been some time since anyone mentioned the proposed bottle plant to be situated in Brookvale. Apart from a great many comments against this questionable plan on social media no one seems to be worried. Where are the politicians? other than Peter Bevan Baker no one has spoken out? The silence of this government and in particular the Premier is quite deafening. I would like to know more about this controversial issue, who are the people planing to open and operate this business? Are they indeed, as has been suggested, closely related/connected to Premier MacLauchlan?  Is the Island dept of the environment actually without the power to stop or at least investigate.  Can such a dangerous proposal just be okayed with a friendly nod and a wink?? Is no one in government concerned enough to stand up and oppose this? Is the Island government devoid of laws to prevent what could be a provincial disaster in years to come. We Islanders demand and deserve answers to the question of who owns this finite resource, more importantly we need answers for future generations if they are to survive. Premier MacLauchlan it is time to stand up and follow through on promises made during the election. Start doing business differently like you said you would. Let islanders see some real transparency and give us the answers we need.

Respectfully submitted F.Ben Rodgers. Abram Village PE

Here is the line they Guardian conveniently left out!!!!

Are they indeed, as has been suggested, closely related/connected to Premier MacLauchlan?

This just makes me all the more suspicious that they are indeed closely related to the Premier, if they were not why delete that sentence???????

God Bless and keep reading


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Don’t think I was Wrong!

Not trying to be a smart Alec here, but quite honestly I never for a moment considered MacLauchlan as a good prospect as the Island Premier. Now it has become abundantly clear he is just another Liberal Hack out to line his and his friends pockets. This is one more clear reason why we need electoral reform. Please consider this when we have the plebiscite in November, vote one of two choices DMP or MMP please not FPTP.

about-the-premierLetter by Dale Small Vision PEI

I Was Wrong

OK I know it’s hard to believe. My friends and legion of fans will be shocked! How could this be possible? Joking aside, the sad and disappointing truth is that I was wrong about our Premier, Wade MacLauchlan. I supported him in the last election. I argued with friends and acquaintances on behalf of him, and told all who would listen that he would be a fine Premier. Transformative, I declared!

The major factor influencing my opinion was his book: Alex Campbell-The Premier Who Rocked the Cradle. Read it cover-to-cover in one sitting….loved it. I remember those days. Premier Campbell was a home town hero to me; a larger than life person who literally transformed PEI…some say for the better, others disagree. In any event, he was and is a true Island patriot and a man of the utmost integrity; a man with vision! I argued that if MacLauchlan was half the man Campbell was, PEI would be well served.

A further factor I considered was that Mr. MacLauchlan is independently wealthy: beholden to no one I believed; a man raised on the periphery of the political scene who had seen it all and was unlikely to wallow in the political mire of PEI politics; a man ready to make a difference; a transformative leader in waiting. To date, in my view, he has failed us.

All I have seen and heard is politics as usual. Patronage abounds. Corporate farmers are treated as privileged citizens to the detriment of all others. Despite all the talk about transparency there is a culture of secrecy. Sketchy loans and appointments to party insiders are commonplace.

I am appalled; where is the vision? Where are the lessons learned from Alex Campbell?

PEI, in the view of many, is in an extended period of decline. Low wages. Break even (at best) in our primary industries. Our young and educated leaving because of the lack of opportunity.

Islanders crave a long term vision; a big picture roadmap to a diversified economy based on excellence. An island free from the destruction of our watersheds and environment. An island governed responsibly, and free of the ugly, secretive privilege afforded to a small cadre of insiders. Mr. MacLauchlan please stand up and prove me wrong again.

Dale Small is one of the founders of Vision PEI

God Bless and keep reading.

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My Blog Signature????God Bless

webphoto_11432_resizeI wonder if some of my blog followers/readers are curious why I sign off  all my blogs with the following.

“God Bless and keep reading”

Some might think I’m a wee bit religious maybe a bit of a religious zealot. They might think I’m Mormon or Jehovah Witness.  Because I’m from Ireland they might think I’m a devout Catholic, or fanatic Orange lodge member! I hope no one thinks I’m a Baptist or Ultra Evangelistic. Well folks I’m none of those things, merely a member of the United Church of Canada. I have been a member for some 50 years and attend Sunday service on a fairly regular basis. I do not attempt to push my faith on others, do not look down my nose on those who do not agree with my beliefs. I mind my own business and worship in my own way. So why do I sign off with the words GOD BLESS.????? Well, some time ago I heard that it was politically incorrect and no longer allowed in Government Offices to say the words GOD BLESS YOU, when some one sneezes! It was considered these harmless two words could offend! I have used this term my whole life and have absolutely no intention to stop using it now because it might offend someone! Egad!!!!, what is this world coming too, such a ridiculous idea.  This is/was a christian country and we hold our beliefs and traditions as sacred. If it really offends some other religions then my advice is not to listen and ignore. Celebrate your faith as you wish and allows us to do the same. Christmas is about twelve weeks away, and the words Merry Christmas will soon be heard everywhere, Nativity scenes and concerts will flourish in our schools, village halls and churches. I will joyfully sing traditional Christmas carols and deck the halls with ivy. Greet friends and neighbours wishing then  seasons greetings and a very Merry Christmas. Not as has been suggested. say “Happy Holidays”

So folks now you know why I sign off as I do.

GOD BLESS and keep reading

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Letter sent to Legion Magazine

Attached is the letter I sent to the Legion magazine a couple of months ago, it was never published, which quite frankly, did not come as a surprise.legionmedal girl

I’m sending this article in to you in the hope you will publish it. However, I suspect that will not happen, if that is the case its a shame because we have a serious issue with medals and other items.

It is utterly wrong for the legion to be selling these cheap $25 medals, cheap clay earrings, umbrellas,coffee mugs etc, all embossed with the sacred Poppy. The Poppy was never intended for this purpose, just as the Poppy fund was never intended to be used for items other than needy veterans and their families. Please be well aware I’m not some discontented member who only wants to vent his anger. There are thousands of members who feel as I do. Our purpose is not to destroy the legion or besmirch its reputation, I think that has already happened. We want to see changes that will correct the present course Dominion Command are steering. We need immediate transparency regarding salaries, expenses and travel. We need immediate changes to associate membership, no wearing these legion service medals, substitute lapel pins. The legion claims, to allow blood relatives to wear late veterans medals, dilutes the value of the medal. They are doing that now allowing these nasty right breast legion service decorations. Please read my article and have the courage to publish it.

Thank You  F.Ben Rodgers.  Wellington Branch PEI.

God Bless and keep reading

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This Dilutes the Value How????????

medal girlTomEagles2Dave-Flannigan_DomPresThe wearing of medals by blood relatives. My goodness when I mention this its like I have stirred up a hornets nest. Protesters come out of the woodwork claiming it dilutes the value of the medals. They do this while wearing a chest full of legion service medals, these are not real medals, more like custom jewelry. I fail to understand how they can protest so loudly under these circumstances. I think I would be embarrassed to tell an eighty year old widow to remove her late husbands medals or face arrest. Even worse, To do it while wearing eight or nine service medals on the right breast, it just amazes me.  I do understand not everyone agrees with relatives wearing these medals, and that is fine, they and their relatives do not have to participate. They can carry their frame displays to Remembrance Services as their particular mark of respect. However, do not tell those who wish to honour a veteran by wearing his/her medals as our particular mark of respect that we are breaking the law. Please do not tell me you are just obeying the law, if the legion petitioned the dept of Justice the law would be amended . I have fought this issue until I’m blue in the face and still only find obstinate refusal to even discuss the subject. Would someone please tell me why this is such a dreadful thing to ask for????  The Royal Canadian Legion are now selling these service medals and will declare to us that it is quite right to do so. When was it ever right to sell medals in this venerable veteran organization? medals should be earn in the service of ones country. As the legion so often tell us, allowing a relative to wear a late loved ones medals dilutes its value. Perhaps they can explain how wearing these right breast legion trinkets adds value, and provides pride and honour to the wearers. Hmm, maybe I have just hit the nail on the head, Note — almost all associate members wear these medals150 medalbeaumont-hamel

These two Legion medals can be purchased for just $25 ea plus P&P

I rest my case  “Again”

God Bless and keep reading

A brief after thought!

I always read through my blogs before posting to check for errors and spelling and it occurs after reading this blog that it is reasonable and quite sensible. Surely the Legion want to provide a system that fits with all of its members. Why is there such resistance to blood relatives wearing their loved ones medals. How does it affect those who oppose it, how does it offend or diminish the value of wearing a medal with pride and remembrance. I have yet to receive a reasonable answer to these questions, to merely state it dilutes the value of the medal is not an answer! Stating the legion is only obeying the law is also a lame response.

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Royal Scottish Legion.

legionmedal girlOutrageous!!! allowing young children and cadets to dilute the value of war medals. This could never happen in Canada, our respectful young boys and girls enter a colour posters contest.It is such a more respectful way to promote history and  Remembrance. On second thoughts, I think I’ll join the Royal Scottish Legion



Inviting all primary school pupils to take part in our competition ‘Films of Remembrance’ and create a two minute film exploring the impact of conflict, the importance of remembrance and the history of your community and veterans.

Our competition gives one lucky school the chance to win an exclusive multi-media workshop with BFBS Scotland!

Schools can also get help with the project from CWGC Living Memory where your film could be eligible for funding #workinginpartnership.

Find out more and register to take part below:…/films-of-remembrance

Take part in the 16/17 primary schools competition. Legion Scotland believes that educating young people about their communities’ history and the effect of war is…
Bravo Zulu Scotland.
God Bless and keep reading.
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Rituals & Insignia. another Update and Correction

Sorry about the misunderstandings over the issue of wearing-not wearing qualification imagesbadges-wings etc. It now seems I have the correct story, and have attached it below in this blog. James also highlights a serious issue in his email, whether intentional or by accident, regarding associate members voting to change policy and direction of the Legion.(admitting their ignorance). The fact many of them did not understand the significance of a veteran wearing his Dolphins-wings, is or should be of serious concern. I believe we have here, one of the major reasons the Legions are losing veterans and no new veterans are joining. Surely on issues that have a direct bearing that effect veterans, then only veterans should be entitled to vote.

I have attached a second email received from Robby. This too makes a lot of sense regarding the wearing of legion service medals. Only actual medals awarded for military ww2medalsservice should be permitted to be worn in legion uniforms. All other right breast service medals should be replaced with lapel pins. I realize I do not have all the answers, however the two issues highlighted in this blog, if enacted would go a long way to improving relations between veterans and associates.Dave-Flannigan_DomPres

Received from James Smith.

The information you have received is incorrect . At the Dominion Convention in June a motion was put forward to formally add a section in the Ritual and Insignia manual to allow the wearing of these earned hazard and/or qualification badges. Presently there is no mention of them. The motion was defeated and therefore the present status quo remains in effect as written in Ritual and Insignia. That status quo is as I said nothing. There is nothing in there specifically stating that said badges can be worn, and there is also nothing in there that specifically prohibits the wearing of them. Now if sometime in the future the powers that be actually amend the book and add a section specifically prohibiting the wearing of said badges then the wearing of them would be against legion rules. At present it is not. This motion was narrowly defeated in St Johns on the floor mainly by those Associate and Affiliated delegates who admitted their ignorance of the significance of the badges and many even believing they were no more significant than the many assorted pins worn by many on their blazers which ironically are specifically prohibited in accordance with Ritual and Insignia. The issue will be returning to the convention floor in 2018——————————————————————————

Received from Robby

Hear Hear excellent answer. Canada should be like our Mother Legions. The Royal Legions medal girlof Scotland England Ireland and Wales. NO NON Military medals or Ribbons worn. In fact they do not even sell dingles as you say. Long service whether an associate or regular member in UK is awarded a Lapel Pin Only.

God Bless and keep reading

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