Monday, October 1, 2012

POLARIZED HYPOCRISY: FRAMING THE MUSKRAT FALLS DEBATE



The Progressive Conservatives say they will use the same rules for the Muskrat Falls debate,that they were so critical of in the debate regarding the Voisey Bay Project

The Opposition Liberals are crying foul. They want more question periods and the right to call witnesses.

I think the hypocrisy runs both ways! 

The Opposition Progressive Conservatives vilified the project; the opposition leader claimed there were loopholes large enough to drive a mac truck through. They wanted to call witnesses.

The Liberals on the other hand played politics. They did not allow expert witnesses; there was no open committee process. They played politics, wanting to  limit the resources and the opportunities of the opposition. Using their majority, they ring fenced the debate.

Now the roles are reversed. The Liberals are crying foul because the P.C’s are doing to them, what they did to the PCs. It would appear that trusting either party results in the same old approach. Might is right!

I would like to think that we could trust our elected politicians to put aside the political theater and work together to hammer out a deal that is good for everyone. Instead, we have this polarized hypocritical crap that further alienates the citizenry.

Lets face a few realities. The Voisey Bay Project was about royalties and opportunities. The province was not investing in the Nickel business. In the case of Muskrat Falls the government wants to invest billions of our public dollars. We have a right to be more engaged, we deserve a more in-depth process of examination, to ask more questions and to have answers to questions.

It is hard to accept the answer from the government that they are only serving up the opposition, that what was served up to them. This is not a game of one-up-man-ship. They are not denying the opposition, they are denying the public.

In opposition the PC's said this was not good enough. If they truly believe in transparency and informing the debate, the government would at least adopt the changes to the format that they were so critical of during the Voisey debate.

The model that works best for me would be the Meech Lake model. Let strangers into the house to offer expert opinions to the House as a whole.  The members and the public would be much better informed.

The Premier has the ability to lead and offer change. To do better, to fix what she felt was wrong in the past.

It is a shame that we can not trust our leadership  to not play games with so much of our money on the line

3 comments:

Cyril Rogers said...

Peter, I fully agree with the hypocrisy of both the government and the Liberals but the NDP are no shining beacon either. Both Opposition parties are guilty of wishy-washy thinking on this issue and can't seem to decide if they are for or against it.

Now, I understand they want to make a final decision based on the DG3 numbers; however, the lack of solid and substantial information in support of the government's arguments should have put them squarely in the "No" camp, pending
these DG3 results.

Any person with a basic knowledge of mathematics knows that the numbers do not add up and never will, in my opinion. Higher numbers, a clause allowing EMERA to opt out, the lack of real demand based on a declining population base, and so forth, all suggest that we are going to indebt future generations for reasons unknown.

We need full disclosure and a referendum on this most critical project in our history, from a financial perspective. We won't get it because, unlike you, I do not believe the Premier can or will change her position. Why? I have my suspicions but many will of these "unknowns" will not see the light of day until it is too late.

Jerome said...

Special debates in the the House of Assembly cannot take place without unanimous consent of the House.
Comparing Voisey's Bay with Muskrat Falls insults the intelligence of everyone in the province.
If Eddie Joyce lives up to his promise, there will be no special debate on Muskrat Falls.
With or without a special debate, this project will be sanctioned.

Anonymous said...

An exercise to accomplish nothing. The deal is done. The debate will be nothing but a farce. What do they know anyway to qualify them to debate. Some of them haven't got a clue other than the ability to stand up and make a fool of themselves. That comes through loud and clear during question period in the House.