I suppose “Silver” Bob Rae must be breathing just a little easier this week.
I suspect that any dream/nightmare scenarios of Ontario premier, Dalton McGuinty running for the leadership of the “desperately needing revival” federal Liberals, dissolved instantaneously last week.
About the same time as a saddened majority of Ontario voters gulped and realized what they had let themselves in for by re-electing McGuinty for another four years.
Actually, I fail to understand how the premier of Canada’s populous, but struggling province felt he needed to have his eight years of peculiar governance exposed so thoroughly by asking, even paying for, public evisceration by the former chief economist of the TD Bank, Don Drummond, in the form of a pre-budget report.
Mr. Drummond – literally – turned McGuinty’s government record inside-out and gutted it like a prime trout, offering 521 pages of brutal Plan B suggestions on how an Ontario cabinet (with any spine) could possibly balance its budget in the foreseeable future.
Drummond not only made it clear this re-elected emperor has no clothes, or if he has they are rented by the taxpayer, he ripped his ideas and policies like Gordon Campbell using copies of BC union contracts to safe-pack his best china for the move from Victoria to London.
Is it possible the premier of the now “have-not” province believed that Drummond might bail him out by coming up with a bag of magic beans that might grow a bean stalk he could climb and find a goose with golden eggs.
Drummond’s history as an economic reputation-wrecker precedes him like a CN-train snowplough. He turned out to be the big, bad giant himself and while he did not chant “Fee-fi-fo-fum, I smell the blood…” he might as well have.
All that being said, I never forget premiers like Dalton McGuinty all have incredible egos, crocodile-thick skin and full Teflon outfit that sheds criticism like rain water.
He may need a few days to figure out a way to continue to smarm Ontarians that he is truly looking after their best interests.
The mantra, “fool me once…” comes to mind. Any Ontarians wanna go for three times?
So, currently there’s a calm after the original storm. Soon, I expect, there will be some selective announcements about areas where Ontario government philosophically wants to make cuts – and then it’ll be Easter, spring, summer holiday season and there will be other issues and scandals to distract the public – business as usual.
On another matter, for the past couple of years police behaviour in many provinces and major cities has been under a very critical microscope.
The police admit they were looking for some increased licence to operate from the on-line surveillance bill to go after child pornographers. I think that may be gone by the board.
Anyway, there’s enough documented investigative success to suggest that at least some diligent officers can find ways to get information, warrants or not, and proceed against the smut peddlers.
However, in beautiful downtown Vancouver, fed up presumably with the constant task of viewing frustrating Stanley Cup riot videos, some idle officers turned to porn channels on their police computers to help pass the dragging time as they waited for their speedy “justice system” to agree that there may be enough evidence to charge maybe another half dozen rioters.
They are making progress – the number is now up in the 70s with one individual actually convicted and jailed – only three
quarters of a year later and new hockey playoffs looming.
Wide-eyed police chief Peter Chu says he is investigating the porn incidents and suspensions and transfers could result if wrongdoing is found. I feel renewed encouragement.
In Alberta a local sheriff got to watch himself on internal security video manhandling and injuring a handicapped man who entered the wrong door to pay a traffic fine. Fired and rightfully so!
Back in Vancouver, efforts continue to hang a conviction on the officer who admitted to tasering a landed immigrant to death before he got out of the Vancouver airport.
That case is over, but he was also involved in a drinking driving incident that ended in the death of a motor cyclist and after months of delays and haggling over the admissibility of evidence, this matter is creeping through court.
The cop remains “suspended with pay,” now in his second year.
Toronto Police have suspended a senior officer after an allegation that he showed up for work under the influence of alcohol.
Superintendent Earl Witty heads Traffic Services and is responsible for the R.I.D.E. Drunk-driving program.
So, he will remain off his normal duties while the force’s Professional Standards unit investigates the allegation.
Hopefully, since there’s no timeline for the probe, it won’t take precedence over the G20 investigation, if there is one.