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EDITORIAL: Cheers & Jeers

Business Minister Christopher Mitchelmore speaks to reporters Monday outside the House of Assembly.
Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation Minister Christopher Mitchelmore. — Telegram file photo

Jeers: to still campaigning on history. Here’s Chris Mitchelmore, Liberal cabinet minister, tweeting earlier this week about pressing issues of the day: “Inquiry shining more about the PCs and their ardent love for MF; Nalcor VP says corporation deliberately lowballed Muskrat Falls cost estimates.” Topic for more timely present-day tweets? How about: “Here’s why I really picked someone for a $132,000 job at The Rooms without a competition”? Or, “Government will investigate behind-the-scenes numbered company benefiting from provincial marijuana deal.” See? There’s lots of new stuff to tweet about, right there in your own department!

Cheers: to good news for Labrador. The news that Tacora Resources is going to reopen the Scully mine in Wabush and hire 260 people is great news for a community hard-hit by the fickle winds of metals pricing. Wabush was to the point where it couldn’t even afford to keep its recreation centre open. The mine closed in 2014 — let’s hope things run smoothly for the planned startup in the summer of 2019.

Cheers: to a rose by any name smelling as sweet, etc. So the new trade deal between the United States, Canada and Mexico actually has a different name in every county involved. The Americans call it USMCA, or the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement, while Canadian politicians prefer the Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement (CUSMA). In Mexico, it’s the TMEUC, or “Tratado Mexico-Estados Unidos-Canada.” Now, what does it say about an overarching trading agreement when the three countries involved can’t even agree on what the agreement’s name is? And isn’t just so cute how everyone has to have their own country’s name first?

Jeers: to things not being as simple as some would claim. The town of Chambly in Quebec has announced it will replace a 200-year-old historic building the town that was demolished after allowing the structure to deteriorate for years. The replica is being built in response to complaints about the demolition. Talk about closing the barn door after the horses were dead and buried. And in other historic replica news this week, a 200-year-old redwood that was under an environmental protection order in Swansea, England and was cut down “by mistake” by a housing developer will be replaced with “a mature replica tree.” As a caller to a radio show in this province once mused, “Sure, if they tore down Colonial Building, they could put something up just as historic!”

Cheers: to keeping up appearances. So the federal Tories lost MP Tony Clement over an online sexting scandal, and now the federal Liberals have lost MP Raj Grewal over a million-dollar debt and gambling problem. We’re chewing through those deadly sins quickly, folks — and we still have 336 parliamentarians left to go! That’s lust and greed taken care of, with only gluttony, laziness, wrath, envy and pride left. Wait a minute: we’re not sure those other ones even count as parliamentary sins …

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