In 2004, Paul Martin asked Justice John Gomery to lead a public inquiry into
potential misspending in the federal Sponsorship Program–a relatively small
investment of taxpayers’ money to try to convince Quebeckers of the benefits
of Canadian federalism in the aftermath of the 1995 referendum on Quebec
The inquiry’s initial phase grabbed national attention with its testimony of
envelopes stuffed with cash left on restaurant tables, bills paid with little
evidence of work done, money spent possibly by a political party.
It also drew attention to the discontent emerging from the growing mismatch
between Canada’s current centralized federal system and the decentralized
institutional order sought by Quebeckers and other Canadians from different
regions across the land.
The Gomery inquiry chose to focus exclusively on the sordid details of the
dirty tricks of money laundering and to pay no attention to the deeper causes
and sources of the problem: the dysfunctions of an existing centralized
governing apparatus that is tearing the fabric of the country apart, and the
collusion of centralizing groups to defend the status quo.
Table of Contents
The $100 Million Mirage
The Fabric of Society
The quail Enigma
Gomery I: Flawed from the Beginning
GomeryII: Fear of Blurring and Lack of Temperantia