Cheers: to interesting interpretations. Here’s Government House Leader Jerome Kennedy, talking about the passage of changes to the province’s access-to-information laws: "Although there has been a lot of criticism of the Bill 29 and a lot of criticism of the procedure, I think this is a situation where democracy worked.” The government heeded not one single concern about the legislation, accepted not one single amendment of the legislation, invoked closure to limit debate on the legislation, had no committee examine the legislation in any way and ensured the changes got passed in just four days without a single change to what was originally introduced. So, here’s a question: what does democracy look like when it doesn’t work?
Cheers: to comparisons. While this province’s government talks about the need to be “competitive” with its industrial electrical rates, it’s good to see what the competition is likely to offer: in British Columbia, provincial go-ahead was just given for a new, $217-million run-of-river 70 megawatt hydroelectric project at McLymont Creek — a project that will require a new transmission line just 10 kilometres long. Estimated cost per kilowatt hour? Less than three cents. Muskrat Falls: 7.6 cents per kWh at the dam, without delivery costs. Total cost at delivery on the Avalon, some 1,100 kilometres of new power lines away? About 21 cents per kWh. Anyone want to look at their crystal ball and guess what kind of “competitive” price new iron ore ventures in Labrador will actually end up paying? And, since the province just amended access to information legislation to, in their own words, “add a new provision which would protect a wider scope of business information from disclosure,” will we ever even know?
Jeers: to still-lengthy wait times. Parents of autistic children are facing wait times of as long as two years before they can see occupational therapists — and the therapists they can get to see have huge numbers of clients. Caseloads are building, and while the government says it’s doing its best to recruit new therapists, there’s no way anyone would see a two-year wait list as acceptable.
Jeers: to political twits. If there’s one thing that the recent filibuster in the House of Assembly has shown for certain, it’s that overtired politicians should not have their hands on the wheel of a Twitter account. Anyone who thinks that the latest round of grade school name-calling and abuse reflects well on any of the province’s politicians should have their heads examined — it really puts the “petty” in petty politics. Maybe the honourable members should think twice — or three times — about what they are saying before they let their fingers do the talking.