Cheers: to comparisons. Here’s a little something to think about: federal Finance Minister Jim Flaherty, making a point about employment insurance, suggested there was no such thing as a bad job. The only bad job, he opined, was no job at all. But, then again, we’re talking about insurance here. Let’s look at it all another way: if Mr. Flaherty’s house burned down, would he be happy if the insurance company replaced the structure with a pup tent? Probably not. But the only bad roof, Mr. Flaherty, is no roof at all.
Cheers: to making a point — any point. Here’s Municipal Affairs Minister Kevin O’Brien, speaking in the House of Assembly on May 14: “You cannot just put these things out for the sake of putting them out. You cannot do that. That is not the way it works, I say to the honourable member. I listened to it carefully; you made some sense in regard to your speech. It certainly was not a bellyflop like the one I just heard a few minutes ago, because that was another bellyflop in regard to a speech. I think he stood up and started talking about Twitter box on the first part of it, and that kind of stuff, and trying to do through the back door what he cannot do through the front door. He is afraid of doing it in regard to a point of privilege, and that kind of stuff. Maybe he should be more aggressive in the House, and talking out of God’s gift, this mouth, our mouths, instead of being more aggressive on Twitter box than he is in the House of Assembly and making a bit of sense when it comes down to the running of this province. That is what it is, it is all about. And we ‘boast’ — he said the word boast — that we boast about our record. You are damn right we boast about our record. We absolutely boast about our record.” OK then.
Cheers: to bloggers. Political blogger Wallace Maclean recently dissected the popular myth that we have fewer federal employees than other provinces. In fact, using Statistics Canada data, he showed that, per capita, only Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island have a higher percentage of federal employees. When you go further and look at the 33 Census Metropolitan Areas that Statistics Canada tracks, “only Ottawa-Gatineau (10.8 per cent), Halifax (4.3 per cent), Kingston (4.3 per cent), and Victoria (2.9 per cent) have a larger per-capita federal civil service presence than St. John’s.” Quite a difference from the endless grousing complaints that we’re dead last in federal presence or something like that. In fact, various politicians have tried to score political points by suggesting we’re somehow getting the short straw. Why let the facts get in the way of a good whine? It will be interesting to see how those numbers change after the latest public sector cuts.