Policies Are For People Who Don’t Think


One day at the Winnipeg Free Press many years ago, your agent had a dilemma on his hands.

In other words, a difficult decision.

So me, the young executive, went to the managing editor’s office, and asked him: “What is our policy on this?”

“Policies are for people who don’t think,” the ME responded. “Do what is right.”

“So what is right in this situation?”

“I didn’t put you in this position for me to do your job. Make a decision. And make sure it is right.”

That always stuck with me: “Policies are for people who don’t think.”

And that’s what happened with Mayor Jim Watson and his proclamation of support for March For Life. And his flag-raising for the same.

Well there’s a bunch of people in town and maybe some locals in this thing and who could be against life and so sure it’s good PR so let’s have National March For Life Day.

Except what he blew off was an issue that shows just about how important Your Worship thinks these proclamations are and how much consideration he gives them. He blindly waded into one of the most contentious issues of our lifetime … abortion.

So while His Worship has steamed off a terse two-sentence note to the city clerk and the public about needing recommendations on the flag-raising and proclamation policy, what Watson really needs to do is look in the mirror.

He screwed up and is now trying to fudge the situation by sternly asking for policy recommendations.

Own up to it. You made a mistake. Pay attention next time. Think. Make an informed decision.

Don’t ask for policy recommendations. Just do the right thing. Weigh the pros and cons.

Policies are for people who don’t think.


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4 thoughts on “Policies Are For People Who Don’t Think

  1. Policy allows people to abdicate responsibility while retaining authority.

    Policy treats everyone equally, but no one equitably.

  2. We must first start with a policy about which body has the authority to set the policy about what policies are needed in the first place. Then those policies will lay out the procedures that must be followed. Those procedures will then send you to firstly refer to the appropriate policy which, of course, will lead back to the authoritative body that sets policy.

  3. The Mayor did not even get the name of the flag right.
    Wish I had thought of the following, but read it elsewhere: the Mayor is so busy throwing city staff under the bus over this, he might pull out his back:).
    The only policy needed is ‘no more flag raising’!

    1. In a somewhat jaded defence of your laird, let’s face it; someone at city hall stuck a piece of paper under his pen and directed him to the podium for a grinny face picture taking session. He didn’t know what he was promoting except that he figured he was, at least, self-promoting.


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