Parliamentary Poet LaureatePublished on 24 November 2011 Hansard and Statements by Senator Tommy Banks (retired)
Hon. Tommy Banks:
Honourable senators, my question is to the Leader of the Government in the Senate. We all understand the wheels of the gods grind slowly and that the business of government is complicated and time consuming, but it is important for us to remember that our souls and the soul of our Confederation are an important part of our lives, along with the more mundane considerations of the affairs of state.
As Mr. Einstein once pointed out:
Everything that can be counted does not necessarily count; everything that counts cannot necessarily be counted.
The position of Parliamentary Poet Laureate, which position is administered by the Library of Parliament and which this place had a great deal to do with — I recall that it had unanimous support here under the sponsorship of Senator Grafstein — has been vacant for five months and the nomination process to name a successor to the position does not appear to have begun.
We all know there are fiscal constraints in some quarters these days, but the cost of filling the post of Parliamentary Poet Laureate is $25,000 per year. That may sound like a lot of money to some — it is to me — and it is an admittedly small stimulus, but it is one. I think everyone knows about the stimulating effect on every part of our economy of spending even small amounts in the arts and cultural sectors.
Can the leader provide us with information as to when the process of nomination for and consideration of appointment to this post will begin?