Archive for the ‘Canadian government’ category

Will ‘Captain Kirk’ boldly go to a new job — in Canada?

May 5, 2010

It has been suggested that the next career move for William Shatner (aka Captain James Tiberius Kirk of Star Trek fame) should be  … drumroll please …. Governor General of Canada.

Most Americans will likely respond with a puzzled look caused by lack of understanding of the governmental structure of our northern neighbor.

The Governor General is the Head of State and representative of the Queen.  This is a mostly ceremonial position that has no policy role.

There is a Facebook  page set up to promote Shatner for Governor General which is quoted as saying:

“It’s time for Canada to boldly go where no country has gone before,” notes a nearly 10,000-strong Facebook fan page that supports the idea.

“Imagine Mr. Shatner reading the speech from the throne in that classic Captain Kirk style we have all come to know and love.”

Speculation about who will fill the shoes of Michaelle Jean has been intensifying across Canada since it was reported Prime Minister Stephen Harper would not be extending her term as governor general.  Viewers of the Vancouver BC Olympics might recall Jean’s ceremonial role in the opening and closing events.

While some insiders believe the new appointment might not happen until the fall, others believe a new governor general could be appointed as early as July 1. This would allow the Queen herself to swear in the new governor general during her nine-day tour of Canada, slated to start June 28.

What does Shatner himself have to say about this proposed career move?  Is he interested — or too busy being the “Price Line Negotiator”?

Shatner took to social-networking site Twitter on recently to address the idea.

“I’m being drafted by various groups to run for Governor General. Would they accept me if I campaign for salmons’ rights? My best, Bill,” he wrote to nearly 250,000 followers.

But only a year ago, Shatner dismissed the idea out of hand, arguing he never liked the idea of symbolic power, opting instead for the real thing: Shatner for prime minister.

In a February 2009 post on YouTube, Shatner said that while prime minister was an attractive position, he simply didn’t have the time.

“Governor general is a ceremonial role. I didn’t want to be ceremonial, I wanted to be active.” he says in the video. “I’m part of Canada.”

“But no time to be prime minister.”

However, Canadians polled about the possibility were definitely receptive to the idea.

Canadian news site ran an unofficial poll gauging support for 13 would-be governors general.  Shatner led the race with a commanding 43% of the vote.  Rick Hansen trailed a distant second at 11%, with Leonard Cohen in third at 10%.