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

Tuesday, September 18, 2012


In their entirely spontaneous, totally-not-orchestrated attacks on their former colleague Snowball Tom Osborne, the Dunderdale2011 Party's brigands of twitterati and open-line speed-diallers derided the Hon. Member for St. John's South as "disengaged" and "deadwood."

With the caveat that the Hansard of the evening sessions of the Bill 29 debate are still not available in their entirety, here in cleverly colour-coded graphical format, are the total number of words attributed by Hansard editors to each ordinary Member of the House of Assembly during the current session. Liberal, NDP, and PC cabinet ministers and back-benchers are distinguished by colour.

(The swearing-in ceremony, and Throne Speech day, are excluded, as are unattributed interventions "An Hon. Member", "Some Hon. Members", and the interventions of the presiding officer or clerk.)

The chart is skewed somewhat towards Opposition and Cabinet members by the presence of the daily Question Period, in which the handful of opposition MHAs, and the cabinet, naturally dominate the proceedings. Excluding Question Period, then, the chart looks more like this:

Note the left-hand side of the chart, which is dominated by Government backbenchers and the lower-profile members of Cabinet. In fact, the three most prolix Liberal MHAs have said more than the 25 least-talkative government members put together. The entire NDP caucus has spent as much time in debate as the 24 least-debatey Tories.

Why... why... why, it's almost as if they are disengaged from the legislative job that they were elected to perform.

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