Ex-Habs Bench Boss Jacques Demers Going To The Senate

He couldn’t read or write throughout most of his life, and now Jacques Demers, ex-coach of the Habs, the one who led the team to a Stanley Cup in 1993, is about to be appointed to the Senate in Ottawa. Is that an inspiring story or what?

Demers isn’t the first ex-Hab to become a senator. Frank Mahovlich was appointed in 1998. I suppose when the country needs classy, smart individuals for the Senate, the first place you look is old Habs people. Except somehow I feel Guy Lafleur will never be appointed. Just a gut feeling though.

From the CBC:

Former NHL coach Jacques Demers, who in 2005 revealed he had hidden his struggle with illiteracy, will be among Senate appointees announced Thursday.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper will name up to nine new members to the upper chamber, Many are expected to be loyal and long-serving Conservative advisers.

Demers, who led the Montreal Canadiens to a Stanley Cup in 1993, has been working as an analyst for the sports network RDS, which announced Demers’s Senate appointment on its website.

“I was contacted for the first time July 13 by someone in the prime minister’s entourage,” Demers is quoted as saying on the website.

“This person told me I was one of Mr. Harper’s choices and he wanted to know if I was interested.

“I answered that I would be very honoured to be a senator. Mr. Harper contacted me a few days later.”

In 2005, Demers released his biography, admitting he had spent 15 years in the NHL as a head coach and general manager, and never knew how to read or write.

He said his illiteracy is due to his impoverished childhood, during which his father beat and psychologically abused him and his mother.

Demers described how he finessed his way through most of his dealings by getting secretaries and media relations people to pen his correspondence for him.

Since his admission, Demers has learned to read and can easily go through hockey stories in newspapers, for instance, The Canadian Press reported.

24 thoughts on “Ex-Habs Bench Boss Jacques Demers Going To The Senate”

  1. What qualifications does he have? Just asking.

    I’d say this sort of appointment demonstrates what’s wrong with our current system. Abolish the senate in its current form, I say.

  2. This is another cynical Government appointment. An appointment based on being a public figure, and probably leaning conservative in his politics. I don’t know this for a fact, as I know nothing of the man’s political leanings. His leanings are secondary to this being a feel-good appointment.

    “He can easily go through hockey stories in newspapers” What a joke. How about potential legislation?

  3. Hi Dennis,
    Thanks for sharing Mr. Demers struggle with illiteracy and horrible upbringing. He is a success in the truest sense. Stanley Cup Coach of the Canadiens. I think people who are illiterate and have problems such as dyslexic are smarter and try harder than more educated folks.

    Lawrence, George Bush, Jr. went to Ivy League schools, you can’t get much worse than him.

  4. “In 2005, Demers released his biography, admitting he had spent 15 years in the NHL as a head coach and general manager, and never knew how to read or write.”

    I met the Wings Sr VP, Jim Devellano, on Monday.

    He felt that Demers may have exaggerated his inabilities to read to an extent.

  5. Interesting. I hope there was no exaggeration but Devellano would know. Hope you had a good trip, Kevin. At some point I might think about joining the International Society too, as I’ve always had a strong interest this way, especially for Russian hockey in particular.

  6. I was a bit shocked when I heard about Demers being appointed to the Senate.

    Not sure what to think of it…. honestly….

    The upcoming season interests me alot more. Watching that Kovy senator guy occasionally anyway.

    He’s a senator right?????

    Is Stephen Harper coaching those senators too????

    I’m so confused….

    (just joking)

  7. Good one, Yves. And about the hockey Senators, I’m a little confused. Is Dany Heatley still a Sen or is that finished, even though he hasn’t signed anywhere else?

  8. I’m confused about Heatley too…. you know, when they got him and then he signed there… I thought great… a guy from Ontario, wants to play in Ottawa…etc…

    But man.. I think Heatley’s turned into a bum.

    If he doesn’t show up to camp, I hope Ottawa gets their money back.

  9. This a joke for sure,I’ll give into the fact he was a good coach,not only for the Habs but for other teams as well.To appoint him as a senator to represent this country is a terrible way for a prime minister, who has always spoken against patrionage appointments, to follow through with this one.I know I should not speak politics here but this is really silly

  10. Well, it’s actually a brilliant political move on Harper’s part. When Stevie visits Lac Chiboogamoo or where ever, think about your typical Quebecer, who do you think will draw all the crowds? Mr. Demers of course. You’re right Dennis, he coached the Habs, Haroer is a big hockey fan…….he knows how important the Habs are to the people of Quebec.

  11. To me this tells me 2 things. First that that both Liberals and Conservatives realize that ex-Habs know what’s best for the country. Second that Harper is worried that there will be an election this Fall and he’ll be kicked out. Too bad the Liberals didn’t make Dryden their leader, the country would be set.

  12. That’s probably it, Moey. It’s not because Demers would be a good senator, if there is such a thing, it’s because he’s related to the Habs. Those wild and wacky politicians, eh.

  13. Yves, Heatley is still a Senator, but, he’s obviously not interested in staying. If a deal isn’t done, he said he’ll play for them, but i’m hoping he gets dealt soon, or it can get real ugly between him and Ottawa.

  14. I hope he gets dealt too Phil.

    For Ottawa…. I just hope they can get something for him.

    Since he refused a deal that was already on the table I think he should have to pay.

    He can’t have it all. I’m sure his worth as a player has suffered because of this.

  15. The way he’s handled the situation has seriously hurt his reputation.
    Supposedly the Sharks are interested. but if they don’t offer anything good enough they’ll need a thrid team to approve, our Habs.

  16. Politics is so ridiculous. Why would Demers want this unless he’s strapped for money, which probably isn’t the case.

  17. Analysing a law text ;

    Readind the text, analyzing the text, taking notes, going to ask some experts about certain technical points. Voting for or against the law.

    Situation :

    Jacques Demers have to vote for a law.

    125 pages

    – He can’t read it properly
    – He can’t take any valuable note
    – He can’t ask for a written advice from an expert about a paragraph in the law
    – he has a weak understanding about the legal vocabulary (orally speaking)

    Where is the efficiency for Canada in this nomination

    In 2005, Demers released his biography, written by a journalist, admitting he had spent 15 years in the NHL as a head coach and general manager, and never knew how to read or write. He couldn’t read the newspapers properly and now his job is to analyze and vote for laws.

  18. Great points, Pierre. How can he do all that? And he admits he knows nothing about politics. I’ve no idea why he would be appointed unless it’s a way to suck up to Habs fans. Thank you for that.

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