Politics
2 min

In a rush to rubber-stamp

More government cuts have been announced, which hold no less of an ideological odour than the last round.

Previously, environmental scientists, National Gallery curators and researchers with the National Research Council have learned that they would lose their jobs. Now, employees at Audit Services Canada appear to be next. Not that it’s a reflection of this government’s “commitment” to transparency and accountability. Instead, the government feels that it can outsource these services at the cost of some 700 public service positions. Because hey, the private sector is always cheaper and more efficient than the public service and can always duplicate the same level of specialized services. Right?

Meanwhile, Paul Wells still can’t get the government to explain which cuts it has already booked in the last federal budget. Apparently, he needs to wait until the public accounts come out in the fall. The government also invited him to contact individual departments — something he’s had so much luck in doing already.

On the subject of financial oversight, in their rush to rubber-stamp the federal spending estimates, it appears that MPs allowed a line item to pass that would end separating out the Prime Minister’s Office’s spending plans from those of the Privy Council Office. Because, you know, this government is all about transparency and accountability and not about mixing up the separate spheres of the public service with the political operations of the government. How many rubber-stamped, hidden goodies have yet to turn up? I guess we’ll have to wait and see what else shakes loose but, so far, I’m totally impressed with the official Opposition’s job of holding the government to account. Two sarcastic thumbs up!

I’m especially impressed with Pat Martin, who now chairs the government operations committee, saying that the government simply needs to be more transparent about these things. He should have said that MPs must start to do their jobs properly by actually scrutinizing these documents line by line. But hey, they’re just trying to Make Parliament Work™ and act in “proposition, not opposition” by rolling over and playing dead. Seriously, remind me why we even bother having a parliament if this is how MPs behave?

 

Here’s more about the New Brunswick farmer jailed in Lebanon, whom the Liberals keep asking about during question period.

John Baird says that he’s not convinced by Syria’s “vague” promises of political reform. Because his is a voice of heft and gravitas on the foreign policy stage. Oh, wait…

And watch Jason Kenney talk out of his ass about Senate reform! (No, you can’t reform the Senate without opening the constitution, and you still haven’t given a vision of what exactly you want a “reformed” Senate to look like.)

Up today — debate starts on the back-to-work legislation for the postal strike.

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