Wednesday, March 16, 2011

PROC part 1

I'm just going to jot a quick update to hold this spot for when something exciting happens in the Government's contempt trial, which is scheduled to run for three days starting today, but with all the baying for conservative blood that has been happening, I won't be surprised if the proceedings grind to a halt after a day and a half when someone just goes for Harper's throat. Carpe Jugulum.

My initial thoughts, however? Bev Oda is not going to be held in contempt for her ridiculous bit of equivocation about the errant extraneous "NOT", but since the will fail in this arena, the committee may feel obligated to throw them a bone and hold the whole government in contempt for failure to disclose cost estimates for the tough-on-crime, fighter jets, and corporate tax cuts, which I personally feel we have a right to know. Even if they fail, which they are not expected to, a contempt court looks terrible on a party resume.

From the sound of it, the conservative strategy is to minimize and distract; Public Safety Minister Vic Toews apparently stated that the point of the committee was to discuss the cost of being 'tough-on-crime'. Close, Mr. Toews; but only in the same way that I get mad at my husband when I find lipstick on the collar of his shirt because I'm concerned about the stain. Then Justice Minister Rob Nicholson assured everyone present that some costs just couldn't be estimated, which is scary when it is coming form your kitchen contractor, and terrifying when it comes from your country contractor.  

Just for anyone keeping notes the total bill for the proposed changes, including the fighter jets, is $631 million. I think we might be getting low-balled. Where's the ref when we need him?

I feel so lucky to be present for this bit of preposterous-court history. If they are found guilty I am going to pretend to be a Liberal and rub this in Victor's face so hard...

The rest of the process runs thusly:
-Childish sniping about binder size and whether or not it matters (size does matter, but content matters more)
-It seems pretty conclusive that, despite the verbose nature of the binders they do not, in fact, provide the necessary information - there are threats about the government's fitness to withstand contempt.
-There is some debate as to whether the fighter jets were intended to be included in the budget or not.
-Apparently the two days process will not include any defense witnesses.
(Both these details are scuttled with the observation that  Laurie Hawn was intended to take the stand, and would be able to answer questions about the F-35's on the defense's behalf, but it is unclear whether he will attend or not.)
Finally everyone agrees how much of a bargain it is that this fun is apparently costing only $8900.
Can not wait to see what tomorrow brings.

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