"We can't allow things that are inaccurate to stand." — The Word of Our Dan, February 19, 2008.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Pease in a pod (XVIII)

The Colour Purple edition.

Wangersky, 2009:
It's been a year since we requested so-called "purple files," and even though the premier himself has admitted such files exist, the official answer from the government is that they don't.

A year has gone by, and the access to information commissioner hasn't even written a report on our appeal of the issue.
Ditchburn, 2010:
Mr. Paradis's office had a system to vet access-to-information requests from the media and political parties. Bureaucrats bundled the “interesting” documents together and put them in a purple folder, waiting for Mr. Togneri to give the green light.

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Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Autre question

A question that FSL student Danny Williams forgot to ask Miss:

"Miss! Miss! What does vendredi le 24 septembre mean?"

Amateur psychology hour

"Our crayons over here are only small and old."

Freudian or Jungian? Discuss.


Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Parlay voo fronsay?

La premyay minister a prond fronsay:
Premier Danny Williams went back to elementary school recently so he could say, en francais, “Quebec is giving Newfoundland and Labrador the shaft.”

He also learned how to say a couple of other choice phrases in French: “Miss, miss,” the Premier says, waving his hand impatiently while his seatmate, a little boy, looks quizzically at him. “I’ve got a question. How, how do you say, ‘Quebec is getting away with highway robbery’ in French?”
The laudable efforts at bilingualism on the part of Son premierosité will of course already be well-known to regular readers.

The A-word

Boy. Someone really has it in for the most often-used conjunction in the English language.

If this release is anything to go by, Tom Hedderson's department is now "Transportation Works".

He is also the Minister Responsible for something that dutifully and sycophantically re-styled itself "Newfoundland Labrador Housing".

And, after four years of being barraged with The World's Cheesiest Logo, there are many who have come to believe, erroneously, that province No. 10 is actually named "Newfoundland Labrador".

Which would make Tom Hedderson the Newfoundland Labrador Transportation Works Newfoundland Labrador Housing Minister.

Which, as it turns out, is what Brad Giffen of CTV News nearly called him the other day.


Monday, September 27, 2010

Party time!

Light the candles on the Information Cake, decorate the Document Tree, and blow the Vuvuzela of Accountability. It's Right to Know Week!

Or, as the Mrs. Malaprops in charge of what passes for accountibility in Dannystan call it, the Right to "NO!" Week.


Hot tip

Dear CBC NewsWhateverYou'reCalledThisYear:

There is an election on in New Brunswick! Look! Look! Election!



The Ministry of Truth (Provincial) is taking unfortunate lessons from some of its online commenters:

Eastern NLers continue to pick up the Pieces after Hurricane

Handyman Series Looking for NLers

Newfoundland and Labradorers?

Subnational news

The CAF are there.

Seamus is there.

Canada's National Newspaper, however, continues to report vicariously, and solely, through the good offices of the CP wire.


Sunday, September 26, 2010


The RCMP issue what might otherwise be a very useful graphic, a map showing the latest situation with regards to local states of emergency in areas hit hard by Hurrican Igor.

They just don't publish it to their own incredibly information-sparse website.

John Gushue reproduces it on his otherwise useful CBC blog, but without the vitally important colour key.

The Telegram reproduces map and legend both... but at a painfully low and entirely illegible resolution.

And VOCM also lowers the resolution of the original graphic, but if you clip and paste their version into a graphics editor, and zoom in on the text, you can just barely make out that the purple dots mark communities with declared states of emergency, while the red dots — Grand Bank, Marystown, Catalina, and Port Rexton — are described as having depleted food stocks.

It has been almost 17 years now since Al Gore invented the World Wide Web.


Saturday, September 25, 2010


Sometimes people confuse causes and their effects, or vice versa.

This is not one of those cases. In fact, it's hard to even come up with an adequate description of what this is:
In defence of the Ottawa office and its approximate annual price tag of $400,000, Rowe looks to Quebec, which has had an office in Ottawa since 1908.

Rowe said Quebec has found a way to get “millions and millions” of extra cash out of the federal government because of its office and the way it’s run.

He said the Quebec office has eight to 10 staff, moving and shaking all over the national capital.

Pease in a pod (XVII)

PM announces changes in the senior ranks of the Public Service
[Friday] 24 September 2010 [at 4:52 p.m.]

Premier Announces Senior Appointments
[Friday] September 24, 2010 [at 3:30 p.m.]

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Friday, September 24, 2010

Geography junky gets fix

Municipal Affairs publishes a rather remarkable photo album, along with — see, medias? — an excellent overview map. (PDF document)

Also the most

The Ministry of Truth (Provincial) writes the epitaph on Igor as a meteorological event:
There were rainfall records, including the rainfall of 238 millimeters at St. Lawrence, which was unprecedented for that location.
Wow. Not only a record, but unprecedented, too!

Thursday, September 23, 2010


For the record, the warm Newfoundland hospitality that Fearless Leader so eloquently blurbled when the Prime Minister of Canada (the Politician Formerly Known as Steeeve) toured storm-damaged areas in Dannystan three years ago:
Well, y’know, I, y’know, any time, y’know, a leader and the leader of the country, y’know, comes in to have a look at things first hand, I, y’know, I’m pleased he’s done that, but, y’know, he’s done it two days after the fact, he never even gave us the courtesy, y’know, and not only me personally, but this is about the people of Newfoundland and Labrador, the courtesy of a phone call over the last 72 hours while all this was happening, to say don’t worry, we’ll be there, and we’ll work with the provincial and the municipal governments to get this done, so, y’know, he comes in on his own, and does it on his own, because, y’know, I and my ministers certainly would have met him at the site, and pointed out to him what we saw when the rivers were raging, quite frankly, right, everything’s pretty well settled down now, and some of the road damage has already been repaired in order to allow, y’know, the transportation links to be back, but anyway, y’know, he does things in his own way, and so be it.

State of the Nation... al Newspaper

Wire copy.

Wire copy.

Wire copy.


Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Dear Medias

Presenting geography-heavy information, such as the locations of numerous road washouts, destroyed bridges, and whatnot, can be made convenient, easy, informative, and even fun, through the use of "maps".



PSA of the year!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

For the record

One-day rainfall records (mm and year the record was set) for the various observing stations, past and present, in Newfoundland.

Note that this is not a list of records for Newfoundland overall, but only for individual stations. That is, the second-largest single-day rainfall may also have been in Pools Cove.
Station                     mm        year

Pools Cove 144.6 1997
Buchans 139.0 1983
Boat Harbour 133.4 1995
Stephenville 130.7 1995
Baie D'Espoir Gen Stn 125.5 1983
Winterland 122.0 1995
St. John's Airport 121.2 1946
Long Harbour 119.0 1981
St. Lawrence 116.0 1995
Harbour Breton 114.5 1986
Isle aux Morts 114.0 1984
Lockston 114.0 1995
Westbrook 112.0 1970
Port aux Basques 111.4 1979
Burnt Pond 110.7 1977
Petty Harbour 109.6 1986
Daniel's Harbour 109.0 1995
Arnold's Cove 108.0 1988
Swift Current 108.0 1988
Cape Broyle 105.2 1996
Colinet 104.6 1948
Bonavista 104.1 1957
Come by Chance 101.0 1988
Goobies 101.0 1991
Port Union 100.0 1995
Heart's Content 99.6 1971
Point Leamington 99.0 1998
Gander 98.3 1951
Tor's Cove 95.5 1971
Doyles 94.0 1990
New Chelsea 93.7 1969
Signal Hill 93.0 1990
Comfort Cove 91.7 1969
Burgeo 91.2 1985
Woody Point 90.4 1995
St. Anthony 88.2 1992
Cow Head 87.0 1984
Cappahayden 86.6 1996
Sunnyside 85.3 1991
Deer Lake 85.1 1957
Lethbridge 85.0 1995
Holyrood 83.0 1999
Corner Brook 82.8 1995
Main Brook 82.4 1988
Logy Bay 82.0 1986
Terra Nova NP 81.8 1995
Exploits Dam 81.5 1957
St. Shott's 81.4 1983
Bishop's Falls 81.4 1983
St. Mary's 81.0 2000
Gallants 80.4 1985
Sops Arm 80.2 1995
Rocky Harbour 79.0 1980
Cormack 78.6 1995
Grand Falls 74.6 1983
Botwood 74.0 1979
Flowers Cove 74.0 1995
Port Saunders 73.2 1995
Plum Point 72.6 1997
Carmanville 72.4 1986
Rattling Brook 71.9 1966
Musgrave Harbour 69.4 1995
Baie Verte 69.0 1995
Roddickton 67.8 1973
South Brook 67.2 1996
Springdale 63.5 1961


Memo to everyone:

It's not Vee-Hickle.

And it's not Veekle.

Friday, September 17, 2010

File next to "Victoria to Halifax"

The Ministry of Truth (Provincial) reports:
Take Back the Night Marches Planned Province-wide

"Take Back the Night" marches will take place this evening across the province. The marches are part of Sexual Violence Awareness Week and will take place in the Rocky Harbour area, Corner Brook, Gander and St. John's.
Here are those locations, "across the province", cleverly plotted on a map.

The Ministry of Truth (Federal) meanwhile has reported on at least one similar event which is not shown on that map. (Audio link.)

Perhaps Happy Valley-Goose Bay is not in "the province".

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Core dump

Terry French sets another fine example for fitness and recreation in the province by announcing “additional funding” under the Conservative Community Recreation Development Grant (CRDG) Program.

Curiously, 25 of the 38 projects announced just happen to be in the four provincial electoral districts held by Liberal members. Coincidence, to be sure.

Curiouslier, the other 13 projects are scattered among ten (and a half) PC-held districts, whereas other PC districts were the subject of Minister French’s Summer of Love series of press releases.

The partisan affiliation of the former, and the comparatively modest amounts of money involved in the latter, are of course in no way connected to the decision to announce these 38 cheques wholesale, rather than retail, and late in the recreation season to boot.

Nothing, they say, could be further from the truth.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

On conspicuous consumption

Some automotive advice from Jack Harris:
You don't need a Maserati to drive to work...


Some things that the editorial staff of The Telegram have on their minds of late:

Government transparency.

The corrosion of legislative process.

Ethnic demagoguery.


There are slow news days...

... and then there are sloooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooowwwwwwwwwwwwww news days.

Tuesday must have been one of the latter at the CBC.


Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Kremlinology: disaster relief

January 14, 2010: Premier Williams announced the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador will contribute $1 million towards the urgent relief effort now underway in Haiti.

September 14, 2010: The Honourable Dave Denine, Minister for Intergovernmental Affairs and Minister Responsible for the Volunteer and Non-Profit Sector, today announced that the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador will donate $100,000 through the Canadian Red Cross to help with relief efforts in flood-ravaged Pakistan.


Monday, September 13, 2010

The Minister is the Message

December 21, 2005: Minister seeks full analysis on future role of Sir Wilfred Grenfell College

"I am pleased to announce today that consultants have been appointed to complete an in-depth analysis that will consider a range of options for the college, up to and including full university status," said Joan Burke, Minister of Education. "The feasibility study will provide the department with the information needed to make an informed decision on the future governance of the college, with the aim of increasing Grenfell’s autonomy."

April 27, 2007: Government Releases Feasibility Study on Sir Wilfred Grenfell College

A feasibility study commissioned by government on the future role of Sir Wilfred Grenfell College in Corner Brook was released today. The Honourable Danny Williams, Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador, said government has reviewed the report and supports a preferred option that will give the college increased university status, within a single Memorial University system. Over the coming months, government will work with the Memorial University Board of Regents on the recommendations of the study.

"This new governance model is an important step in allowing Sir Wilfred Grenfell to lead economic and social development on the west coast," said the Honourable Tom Marshal, MHA for the District of Humber East and Minister of Finance. "It is yet another example of the rejuvenation the Corner Brook region is witnessing under the Williams Government. To say I am delighted would be a massive understatement and I was honoured the Premier gave me the opportunity to make this announcement during yesterday’s Budget speech."

March 26, 2009: Minister Burke noted that in keeping with the Provincial Government’s commitment to greater autonomy for Sir Wilfred Grenfell College, $2.5 million is being allocated this year to assist the college with that transition.

December 16, 2009: Government Announces Plan for Increased Grenfell Autonomy

To assist the growth and independence of Sir Wilfred Grenfell, the Provincial Government has formally requested that the Board of Regents:

• Rename Sir Wilfred Grenfell College to Memorial University of Newfoundland-Corner Brook to enhance its unique identity within the university system;

September 10, 2010: Memorial University’s Board of Regents has accepted a recommendation that will give Sir Wilfred Grenfell College a new name.


The new new math

This is fun:
The Provincial Government today announced plans to fund up to $320,000 (and more if required) for a Newfoundland and Labrador-based observational study of multiple sclerosis (MS) patients who have chosen to undergo the experimental liberation procedure proposed by Dr. P. Zamboni.

Now, the "up to" trick is as old as the hills. Saying that you are going to spend "up to $20.00" on lunch does not mean you are buying a $20.00 lunch. You could grab an O Henry bar and a litre of skim milk, and pocket the substantial difference.

(Cf. "as early as".)

But this one is interesting. The Provincial Government (what? not Williams Government?) will spend "up to $320,000". They could spend less.

Or they could spend "more if required".

In other words: Provincial Government will spend a completely random amount of money. But you don't read that in the press release... at least not on its face.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

All just a little bitta history repeating

From a Ministerial Statement reproduced as Appendix G in a certain A. Brian Peckford's The Past in the Present (Cuff, 1983).

The date of the statement is not given, but it would appear to have been some time in 1980:
There often seems to be the impression given that Newfoundland only receives by does not contribute. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Stop me if you think you've heard this speech before (VI)

Do a shout-out to Great Big Sea:

St. John's Bored of Trade, September 8, 2010:
That’s why I was so pleased this year when the Business Hall of Fame inducted Great Big Sea into their annals.

Empire Club of Canada, February 3, 2005
Our boys from Great Big Sea are the hottest ticket in town in Boston on St. Patrick’s Day! The endorsements do not come much better than that!


Saturday, September 11, 2010

Corner Brook: The Show-Me City

Stripped from the headlines of the Western Star:
Name change could signal end for autonomy: Kelly

Go on witcha! Not true!


Stop me if you think you've heard this speech before (V)

Awww, go nuts; just start quoting from random pages in Bartlett's (or perhaps from cheesy "successories".)

Canadian Club of Ottawa, June 9, 2010:

As Fred Shero, former coach of the Philadelphia Flyers said, if you don't want criticism, "say nothing, do nothing, be nothing."

As Robert Browning said, "Tis looking downward that makes us dizzy."

As Sir Winston Churchill once said, "If we are together, nothing is impossible. If we are divided, all will fail."
Canadian Energy Forum, September 2, 2009:

Mason Cooley once said that, "Courage, determination, and hard work are all very nice, but not so nice as an oil well in the back yard."
NOIA Conference, June 16, 2009:

We persevered and we were persistent. In the words of Robert Half, "Persistence is what makes the impossible possible; the possible likely; and the likely definite."

Mark Twain once said that "it takes more than three weeks to prepare a good impromptu speech." And part of this speech has been in the making for much longer than that.
St. John's Bored of Trade, September 10, 2008:

American actress, Katherine Hepburn, once said, "To keep your character intact you cannot stoop to filthy acts. It makes it easier to stoop the next time". I believe these words hold a dire warning for all Canadians.

If Stephen Harper gets a majority government, I’ll remind you of the words of Bachman Turner Overdrive, "You ain’t seen nothing yet."

Former British Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli once said, "we are not creatures of circumstance; we are creators of circumstance".
Hebron announcement, August 20, 2008:

Well, as oil pioneer J. Paul Getty once said, “the formula for success: Rise early, work hard, strike oil.” Ladies and gentlemen, we are in the oil business.

St. John's Bored of Trade, September 12, 2007:

I quoted Oprah Winfrey to Cathy Bennett the last time I was here and l say it again today, "The future is so bright it hurts my eyes."

Economic Club of Toronto, May 3, 2007:

Napoleon said "Leaders are dealers in hope."

Disraeli once said, "The English nation is never so great as in adversity."

I encourage the Prime Minister to consider the words of George Washington "Undertake not what you cannot perform but be careful to keep your promise."
Nati luncheon, March 16, 2007:

As Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple Computers once said, "Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower."

The only problem is, as Larry Ellison, the founder of Oracle Corporation put it, "When you innovate, you’ve got to be prepared for everyone telling you you’re nuts."
American composer and writer John Cage once said, "I can't understand why people are frightened of new ideas. I'm frightened of the old ones."

Steve Ballmer, CEO of Microsoft Corporation, said that, "The Number one benefit to information technology is that it empowers people to do what they want to do. It lets people be creative. It lets people be productive. It lets people learn things they didn’t think they could learn before, and so in a sense it is all about potential."
Response to the Speech from the Throne, March 22, 2006:
Henry Ford once said that: “If money is your hope for independence you will never have it. The only real security….in this world is a reserve of knowledge, experience and ability.”
Empire Club of Canada, February 3, 2005:
But I am reminded of the wisdom of another of your speakers, Golda Meir who said, "Don’t be humble, you are not that great."

During this Super Bowl week, the words of Vince Lombardi are appropriate: "It’s not whether you get knocked down, it’s whether you get up."

The Prime Minister’s actions reflect the words of Franklin D. Roosevelt: "The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little."


Autonomy: ungulate edition (III)

A passive verb is used:
The George River caribou hunting season in Labrador, which had been scheduled to open on August 10, was delayed as the result of preliminary information from a post-calving census conducted in July in partnership with the Government of Quebec, Laval University, the Nunatsiavut Government, Torngat Wildlife and Plants Co-Management Board and the Institute for Environmental Monitoring and Research.

By whom?

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Friday, September 10, 2010

Now even more Childy, Youthy, and Family-Servicey!

The Ministry of Truth reports:
CYFS Unveils New Strategic Plan

September 10, 2010

Child, Youth and Family Services Minister Joan Burke unveiled the Department's Strategic Plan Friday. Burke says their priorities are the safety and well being for all children and youth within supported families and communities. Burke says every department of government has a strategic plan that outlines their directions and priorities. She says they had a focus group to help them develop the planning. Burke says it will outline their plan for the next four years. She says they ensured their front line staff gave as much input as possible for the process.
Alright. The new strategic plan — strangely, not a syllable about it over at ITAR-DAN — makes it clear that the department's "priorities are the safety and well being for all children and youth within supported families and communities".

This corner, for one, is relieved, but can't help but wonder: what, pray tell, were the department's "priorities" before this super-awesome, new and improved, nitrogen-enriched "strategic plan" was "unveiled"?

Kremlinology: domestic tourism edition

His Premierosity goes to Corner Brook to make a health-care funding announcement, and for some curious reason, the municipality is represented on the official program by one councillor Leo Bruce. Yes, that Leo Bruce.
The Honourable Danny Williams, Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador and MHA for Humber West, along with the Honourable Jerome Kennedy, Minister of Health and Community Services, were in Corner Brook today for the announcement, and were joined by the Honourable Tom Marshall, Minister of Finance and MHA for Humber East; Dr. Minnie Wasmeier, Chief Operating Officer, Secondary Services, Western Health; and, Leo Bruce, Councillor, City of Corner Brook.
The next day, His Premierosity goes to Labrador City to make a health-care funding announcement, and for some curious reason, the municipality is not represented on the official program at all.
The Honourable Danny Williams, Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador, was joined by the Honourable Jerome Kennedy, Minister of Health and Community Services; Zoë Yujnovich, President and CEO, Iron Ore Company of Canada (IOC); Jim Baker, MHA for Labrador West; and, Boyd Rowe, CEO, Labrador-Grenfell Health, for the announcement.


Stop me if you think you've heard this speech before (IV)

Quote yourself quoting a Kennedy:

St. John’s Bored of Trade, September 12, 2007:
JFK said, "Let us never negotiate out of fear, but let us never fear to negotiate." I quoted this in one of my first speeches and have practiced it ever since.


Stop me if you think you've heard this speech before (III)

Quote a Kennedy.

NOIA Conference, June 16, 2009
As JFK said, "Let is [sic] never negotiate out of fear; but let us never fear to negotiate."
Hebron Announcement, August 20, 2008
As JFK once said, “…a rising tide lifts all the boats. And a partnership, by definition, serves both partners, without domination or unfair advantage. Together we have been partners in adversity - let us also be partners in prosperity.”
Atlantic Canada Oil and Gas Summit, May 30, 2005:
JFK said “let us never negotiate out of fear, but let us never fear to negotiate.” The new approach in Newfoundland and Labrador is to negotiate fearlessly, with a goal of getting a great deal for the province, but also fully prepared to do no deal at all rather than do a bad deal.
St. John's Bored of Trade, November 1, 2001:
Bobby Kennedy defined it best just before his assassination in 1968 when he said "GDP means everything ... except that which makes life worthwhile."
Inaugural Speech as PC Party leader, April 7, 2001

John F. Kennedy said, "Ask not what your country can do for you but what you can do for your country."

I say to Newfoundlanders and Labradorians, "Ask not what we can do for our country, because we have done enough. Let's ask our country what they can do for us."


Recent history, re-written for your reading pleasure

In his bit of boosterism for Atlantic Business Magazine, Ryan Cleary manages to be wrong and right at the same time:

Seven years after taking office, the Williams administration has two Labrador cabinet ministers (there were none in 2003; Patty Pottle holds the other portfolio of Aboriginal Affairs).
It is true that there were no cabinet ministers from Labrador in 2003... but only true for that portion of 2003 from November 6th to the end of the year. That was after Williams Administration justified His decision to leave John Hickey out of cabinet by arguing that "minute portions of the province can be left out."

"Minute" Labrador contains nearly three-quarters of the provincial landmass.

(Hickey would be brought into cabinet in the Summer Shuffle of July 2006.)

Prior to the 2003 election, and the change of government on November 6th, there had been, um, two provincial cabinet ministers from Labrador.

Original thought alarm

Ryan Cleary reports for Atlantic Business Magazine:
“Labrador West is going to be the Fort McMurray of the East,” says Labrador Affairs Minister John Hickey.

The economy of Lake Melville/Happy Valley-Goose Bay, a hub in terms of government, health, and transportation services, is equally as robust, he says. “One thing I don’t have to worry about as an MHA is people coming to me looking for a work. Anybody who wants a job can work.

Hickey takes the boast a step further: “The future of this province lies in the development of the resources of Labrador,” he says.

That kind of thinking began when the Williams government took power in the fall of 2003. “For far too long, the people, resources and potential of Labrador have been ignored and excluded from decision making processes of the province,” read the Progressive Conservative book of pre-election promises. “We can no longer tolerate this atmosphere of exclusion, and we must recognize that Labrador will play a pivotal role in the future success of this province.”
Amazing! Astounding! Unbelievable! (Literally!)

No one in Newfoundland, in the two and a half centuries that Labrador has been politically attached to it, has ever thought, even for a second, that the future is somehow attached to the development of the resources of Labrador?


That only started seven short years ago?

What else did Danny do in the fall of 2003? Say "Let there be light?"


Thursday, September 09, 2010

Stop me if you think you've heard this speech before (II)

Quote yourself.

St. John's Bored of Trade, September 8, 2010:
As I stated to the Canadian Club in Ottawa in June the ruling of the Régie once again demonstrated that province's bias, arrogance and discriminatory business practices towards our province. Apparently, their stranglehold over us on the Upper Churchill was not enough for them.
Canadian Club of Ottawa, June 9, 2010:
I told Don, I enjoy the part of my job where I just get to run the province, developing policies and plans that move us forward as a people. I don't spend my time looking for a fight!
St. John's Bored of Trade, September 9, 2009:
As I said last week, one important component of the Lower Churchill development is obviously the ability to transmit the power. I will state again here today, that it is unfortunate that our neighbours at Hydro Quebec are not more cooperative in this regard. Power which was bought by Hydro Quebec for 0.25 cents per kw/h in 1976 is being sold for over 9.0 cents per kwh or 36 times more than what they pay for it.



Some megawatt metaphors. From the pages — the news pages — of the Quebec Daily Newspaper.

You know.

The one that is supposedly so very, very anti-Danny.
If Danny Williams’ language was any stronger, the audience might have been asked to excuse his French.

The premier wouldn’t want them to excuse Quebec, though.

The Lower Churchill is a megawatt megaproject that’s a “major priority” for Newfoundland and Labrador.

It wasn’t his first offensive against that province for its position, but it was arguably his strongest.

That’s only the tip of the iceberg of the money Quebec receives from Canada, he said.

The premier touted the Lower Churchill as the best green energy project in North America.
PS: Quaere, what is the unit by which the goodness of an energy project is measured? Which project is the second-best?

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Vicious charity

The New York Times explores the ethical minefield that is a uniquely American phenomenon, the political charity.

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Stop me if you think you've heard this speech before (I)

Name-drop. The same names. Over and over again.

St. John's Bored of Trade, September 8, 2010:

From Rick and Seamus and Rex and Gordon – we have some of the most recognized and talented entertainers in the country. Our writers, our musicians, our artists – they embody who we are as a people and they promote this place like no business ever can.


And now we have a whole new generation of movers and shakers, and our very own national heart throb in Allan Hawco. Let me say publicly today congratulations to everyone at the Republic of Doyle for your outstanding Gemini nominations! Our capital city never looked so good!
Canadian Club of Ottawa, June 9, 2010:

We contribute culturally with our extraordinary talent, starting the day with Seamus O'Regan, ending it with Rex Murphy and being entertained in between by The Republic of Doyle, Rick Mercer and 22 Minutes.

Empire Club, Toronto, February 4, 2005:

Right across the country, we start our day with Seamus O’Regan on Canada AM, and end it in the evening with Rex Murphy on The National. We begin the week watching the intelligent humour and commentary of Rick Mercer on Monday Report and we finish the week enjoying the satirical wit of the talented cast of 22 Minutes.


Sunday, September 05, 2010

Westcott v. Westcott

I have to wonder if the lack of provincial government advertising in his Business Post paper ignited his latest tirade? I also have to wonder how 80 per cent of our provincial business leaders who read his paper view the label accorded them by Westcott — stunned, ignorant, naive and complacent. I’d love to be a fly on the wall when an advertising sales rep from Westcott’s Business Post comes knocking on their boardroom doors.

I think Craig Westcott owes voters and non-voters across the province an apology for stooping to a new journalistic low — one that hit far below the belt.

Bill Westcott
Clarke’s Beach

Saturday, September 04, 2010

Dear CNN

Just so you know: a log washing up on a Cape Cod beach is not newsworthy.


Friday, September 03, 2010

A long-standing policy stands down

In one of just a handful of articles reported outside Quebec on the long-simmering Labrador Iron Mines dispute near Schefferville, Barb Sweet reported for the Telegram, on July 6th:

In an e-mail statement, Labrador Affairs Minister Patty Pottle said the Quebec Innu have to have their claim considered in a federal land claim process that provides for agreements where two or more aboriginal groups have overlapping claims.

She said the Quebec Innu have to deal with the federal government and the Labrador Innu.

"The province would not ordinarily be a part of the overlap negotiations. This is consistent with federal comprehensive claims policy and the approach taken in the negotiation of overlap agreements between Labrador Inuit and Nunavik Inuit and between Labrador Inuit and Labrador Innu," Pottle said.

"It should also be noted that the federal government has recently appointed a person to facilitate overlap talks between the Quebec and Labrador Innu."
And earlier this year, Rob Antle reported, in the March 5th edition of the paper:

The Quebec Innu say their constitutional aboriginal rights in Labrador are being denied.

[Réal] McKenzie said they are "looking seriously" at court action to potentially block the Lower Churchill.

But Dunderdale said the government has a long-standing policy of not entering into negotiations with aboriginal groups outside the province while land claims remain pending within Newfoundland and Labrador.

She said the New Dawn deal does not extinguish any rights of Quebec Innu, but any such claims would be handled by Ottawa.
Today comes news that mine proponent New Millennium Capital have resolved their dispute with the Innu of Matimekush, with some interesting outside assistance:
This agreement was reached following the recent helpful involvement of the governments of Canada, Newfoundland and Labrador, and Quebec and their respective commitments to settle certain issues concerning the land claims of the Innu.
The Danny Provincial Williams Government is unusually modest about its role in such a beneficial outcome.


Wednesday, September 01, 2010

Sycophant of the Month: August 2010

Total number of ProvGov press releases issued in August: 187 (+26 from July).

Total number with the phrase "Williams Government": 14 (-4 from July).

Sycophancy index: 7.5% (-3.7% from July).

Someone got the memo that August is polling month, and, unsurprisingly, the sheer output of ProvGov press releases jumped in August, driven in part by TCR and Health’s ongoing efforts to cheerfully announce every penny that they ever spend on anything.

Surprisingly, however, it was a quiet month from a WilliamsGovernment perspective.

It was fully nine days into the month before Jerome Kennedy and Diane Whalen got things moving, and another week before Tom Hedderson joined them on the big board.

That week would turn into a flurry with Hedderson, Sullivan, Collins, Jackman, Collins again, and Kennedy crowding the goalposts.

The month that started sleepy ended with a flourish. The final week saw Kennedy knock in two in one day, followed by another Collins, another Hedderson, and another Jackman.

Sullivan and Whalen end up on the board with one apiece, Jackman has two, and Hedderson, tied with Collins at three, falls just short in his effort to reclaim the title he last held in June.

Retaining his crown from July, your sycophant of the month for August, and for the third month of the last four, Jerome Kennedy! Congratulations, Minister!

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Mixed message

OK, so now it seems that the Inland Fish Enforcement Program was established by Danny Williams-Government to send a message to poachers.
The Inland Fish Enforcement Program was established by the Williams Government in 2004 to send a clear message that the province would act quickly and decisively to apprehend poachers and others who abuse this resource. Since then, the Provincial Government has invested approximately $13 million toward the protection of the province’s inland fish stocks.
It seems like only yesterday that the Inland Fish Enforcement Program was Danny Williams-Government's Provincial Government's way to send a message to Ottawa.
The Inland Fish Enforcement Program was established by the Provincial Government in 2004 to address concerns raised by conservation groups and recreational anglers that the Federal Government was not living up to its responsibility to provide adequate enforcement and conservation of salmon and trout in coastal and inland waters. To cover this gap the Provincial Government provides over $2 million annually to ensure the preservation of trout and salmon stocks for future generations, including funding in Budget 2009: Building on Our Strong Foundation to purchase a new coastal boat.