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

Friday, October 07, 2011

Stop asking questions

A bit of a strange, passively-voiced conclusion to a CBC election commentary by Doug Letto:
How many of us have asked these questions:

- What would happen if oil production was interrupted because of technical problems or an environmental catastrophe?

- What if oil prices plummeted?

- What "other revenue sources" could we reasonably and quickly marshal to take the place of offshore royalties?

There has not been much talk of any of those scenarios in this election. Only a determination to exercise prudence and care in spending the income generated by oil. Perhaps, in the midst of plenty, this is a debate politicians can't stomach right now.

But it’s a talk that needs to happen once the campaign buses have been parked and the placards put away.

It's actually a talk that needed to have happened starting in 2006.

That was just after Danny Williams cashed the "we got it!" cheque, resulting from a campaign in which no one β€” literally, no one β€” in the local press called Williams out on the inherent contradiction in supposedly wanting to be a "have province" and collect equalization at the same time.

And that was the precise moment when, having lost precious CRA popularity points during the 2004-2005 battles with the public-sector employees, Williams resolved to fix the poll problem, permanently, by hiring more of them, and paying them more money.

The monstrous ramp-up in public spending was not invisible. It was plain as day for anyone who bothered to look.

A few of us looked. None of us who did own transmitter towers, or purchase ink by the hectolitre.

Perhaps the politicians can't stomach this talk during a fart-and-you-miss-it election campaign. They can't stomach it outside the writ period, either.

But the past eight years of passivity and silence, on big issues and little ones, from what used to be an active political press gallery, is nothing short of astounding.

Labels: , ,


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home