We are now in the winter season after December 21.
I assume that everyone was scared silly by the weather forecasters telling us about the big storm that might hit us even though their computer models were premature in their forecasts. It appears now as if we will only be getting some rain and that it will be less windy out. Or will it? Who knows according to Paul Gross of WDIV who made this comment on December 21, 2014:
“The latest computer models have completely changed the structure of our developing Christmas storm…almost a 180 degree reversal from what I’ve seen for the past six days. This kind of sharp change in the models always make meteorologists nervous. Is this a “real” change to reality? Or is it a one-time adjustment that will go back to the original outlook?”
It seems these days that only bad news sells, even in the weather business. It is just like the doctors telling us recently that even after taking the flu shot we might not be protected because there is a rare strain of flu going around.
No worries though. We have some late breaking stories at the Windsor Square for your information.
ATTACK THE P3 MESSENGER
I have not yet read anything that said that the Ontario Auditor General was wrong in her analysis that taxpayers are ripped off for $8 billion through the use of P3s. What was even worse was that fuzzy math was used to try to justify the unjustifiable so that numbers were used so that the balance would be kept in favour of P3s in almost every case.
Accordingly if you cannot discredit the analysis, then shoot the Messenger. That’s what a bunch of academics tried to do. Unsuccessfully as I might add.
It took 3 of them, Mark Stabile, Beth Elder and David Cameron, on December 19, 2014 to try to do so in an article in IPolitics: “What happens when auditors-general dabble in policy?”
They admit that:
“Ontario’s auditor general, Bonnie Lysyk, has the important mandate of… assessing the value-for-money of selected government programs.”
Yet, they then go on to say that:
“However, when auditors move from reporting misuse or mismanagement to commenting on public policy decisions, we should pause to consider whether the auditor general has moved beyond her proper sphere of responsibility.”
They made this outrageous statement to try to discredit the AG without recognizing that Infrastructure Ontario tried to do so as well and she was able to attack successfully their thesis:
“Proponents of private financing for infrastructure note, however, that public management of large infrastructure projects comes with a larger risk of running over-schedule and over-budget. (Infrastructure Ontario CEO Bert Clark argues that Ontario is saving up to $6 billion by using alternative financing.)”
DUH, what would one expect proponents of P3s to say for heaven sakes. All of their other justifications for P3s didn’t hold water.
I don’t understand how they can make a comment such as this without a shred of proof other than the word of P3 proponents:
“How one trades off higher borrowing costs against the need to meet deadlines and budgets is, again, a public policy matter, one that our elected officials need to decide. It may be in the public interest to ensure that a project is completed earlier and that the private sector shares the risk.”
What the authors of the article seem to fail to understand is that this report is one of the few that has looked at P3s as a whole and found the concept wanting.
What the AG was involved in was not policymaking but rather telling policymakers that this concept makes no sense. She was doing her job by saying that there is little value for money in P3s and that Government Departments ought to go back to doing what they are supposed to do!
DOES PM HARPER READ THE BLOGMEISTER
Now you know that he does.
A few days after I predicted a March, 2015 federal election we saw this:
“Harper says he’s sticking around for October election, ruins Christmas for pundits…
In a year-end interview with CBC’s Peter Mansbridge, Mr. Harper said — once again — that no, he’s not planning to retire, and no, he’s not plotting to call an early election to catch the other parties off guard.” (Kelly McParland Canadian Press December 18, 2014)
Absolutely, we should believe everything that the Prime Minister says. NOT!
For sure now, the Opposition better make certain that they have candidates nominated in all of the ridings and start their publicity machines moving.
WILL YQG LOSE ITS CUBA FLIGHTS
While American tourists are still not permitted to travel to Cuba notwithstanding the easing in the relationship between the 2 countries, they may be allowed to do so one day.
Does that mean that Sunwing will stop flying the Windsor/Cuba route? After all, why would Americans want to cross the border when all they have to do is go to Detroit Metro?
It seems to me it depends on how many Americans now fill up their planes. If Canadians are the main buyers of travel packages to Cuba, with only a sprinkling of Americans, then there would be no reason for Sunwing to abandon Windsor. If, on the other hand, a lot of Americans were on the planes, then Sunwing would have to think twice about remaining in Windsor I would suspect.
MORE BANK OF CANADA UNCLAIMED BALANCES
A reader of mine sent a note to Enwin about amounts owing to the Windsor Utilities Commission and to Enwin totalling around $2100.
I wonder if they will give him a finder’s fee of 10% to be applied to his utility bill. Not a chance!
PEACEFUL CANADIANS EH
I don’t want to make light of a tragic situation but Americans probably won’t know what to think when they see this headline from NBC News: