By Victor Schwartzman
August 31, 2015
Dr. Cora Petersen here, neurosurgeon with a specialty in miniaturization. Routine exploratory surgery can be dangerous to the patient and still tell you nothing. At times, you must see the patient from the inside, on a cellular level. That is what I and my team do.
Miniaturized in our submarine, the Proteus, we take a fantastic voyage inside patients. We are injected into them and have one hour to do our work. After that, we and our submarine automatically return to normal size.
A few months ago the AODA Alliance filed a Freedom Of Information Act application to learn why the Ontario Government was not implementing its access legislation. When the Government resisted, the Alliance contacted me. My process of miniaturizing an entire surgical team and submarine was less expensive and simpler than an FOI. We were injected into the Minister responsible for access implementation, Brad Duguid. When we reached his brain we had a difficult time locating an access interest lobe but did find one at the back of his brain, starved for attention. It demanded removal. On the grounds of common decency I had no choice but to agree.
I kept the access interest lobe in a jar in my office and talked with it. It was the only access interest lobe we had ever found in a politician’s brain. Soon enough I realized it only existed in Duguid’s brain because he was the Minister responsible and HAD to have such a lobe. His brain created it because the Minister had to respond to access interest groups.
That gave me a fantastic idea. I discussed with the lobe using it to create additional access interest lobes. Using my miniaturization process the new lobes would be inserted into politicians’ brains. We could create in politicians at least the potential for interest in access! A bold scheme, but difficult times call for bold plans. My team grafted cells from the lobe. Soon we developed four new access interest lobes, all excited, knowing the situation, raring to go. Then the election was called.
For the first two weeks, as we expected, none of the Leaders mentioned access issues. I knew why. None of them had access interest lobes and no reason to develop any. Politicians have tax lobes and pavement lobes and business development lobes, but no access interest lobes. Politicians respond to pressure from organized interest groups with power.
It was time to act, and as soon as the election campaign began so did we. Because we only had four lobes we decided to focus on the four Leaders themselves. I will not divulge details of our negotiations with the Party Leaders. All agreed having an access interest lobe would be a good thing. Acceptance came after, in individual private meetings, each new lobe was introduced to the Leader it would be inserted into. Also at each meeting was the experienced original lobe, which spoke of its time in Minister Duguid’s brain. It explained that it was unsuccessful in creating an interest in access, but much had been learned since then. Yes, the lobes would be competing with a brain focused on campaign victory issues such as the economy. But it was believed the excited new lobes would be able to feed into lobes focused on winning the election and support proposals on access issues, for example a Canadians With Disabilities Act (which has proven effective in the United States.)
In turn, apparently, none of the Leaders saw having an access lobe as a threat. Perhaps I had underestimated the significance of the original lobe’s story. Agreement was given and times arranged. Four times I and my team got into the Proteus, were miniaturized to a cellular level and injected into a Leader. Four times we travelled to a Leader’s brain and found an appropriate place to place the new lobe. When we were certain it was secure, it was a simple matter of reaching the Leader’s eyes. When the outside team spotted us, they gave each Leader a picture to look at of a baby, sometimes a puppy. When the Leader cried, we rode the tears outside, and safely returned to our normal size outside the patient.
Did the procedure work? We began it two weeks into the campaign. It is now two weeks later. To date, it is a serious disappointment. As before, none of the Leaders mention access issues. In electronic contact with the lobes, I hear the same message from each: “Get me out!”
Tragically I realized too late that we had overlooked that the original access interest lobe survived only because it was in a Minister’s brain. These lobes were in Leaders’ brains. We had miscalculated how much worse a Leader’s brain would be. In a regular politician, an access interest lobe could survive, potentially grow, even in a Minister. But a Party Leader had the Big Issues to consider, including catering to interests who are willing to make their power known. Advocates on access have no power, that is why they are advocates. Access interests have no chance in a Leader’s brain!
I see no reason to force the lobes to struggle. They are young and have a right to a decent life. We maintain regular contact and I have assured them that after the election, no matter what the results, if they wish they will be removed.
Removal is no problem as each Party Leader has already agreed to have their access interest lobe removed at any time.
Next: Forget The Lobes. To Get An Interest In Access, With Politicians Do You Have To Start From Scratch? Maybe Dr. Frankenstein Had A Point.
Victor Schwartzman has contributed this weekly satirical column to Accessibility News and the AODA Alliance since May 13, 2013. Check out the first nine chapters of his current satirical fantasy novel, King Of The Planet, for .99 on Kindle at http://www.amazon.ca/King-The-Planet-Victor-Schwartzman-ebook/dp/B00NE0CCRC, or for free on Facebook. The unpolished first nine chapters got a “4 out of 5 star” review! He is currently polishing the novel. His graphic novel The Winnipeg Weakly Herald (where each chapter is one issue of a community newspaper) is serialized on the great Canadian lit site, http://www.redfez.net. He has had poetry and short fiction published, has edited novels and his email is firstname.lastname@example.org.