Thursday, November 12, 2009

Our money, their self-promotion

The ongoing series of revelations of how wastefully Conservatives are spending taxpayer money continues: "Tory stimulus ads ripped as $3M pat on the back."
The Conservative government spent more than $3 million of taxpayers' money in September on an advertising campaign that amounted to little more than self-promotion, a Liberal critic says.

The newspaper and web campaign, called Creating Jobs, didn't attempt to inform Canadians about how infrastructure stimulus spending was creating employment opportunities – only that the Conservatives declared it was, Liberal MP Martha Hall Findlay (Willowdale) said Wednesday.
Notice the timing, the ad upticks always seem to occur around a politically sensitive moment the Conservatives want to manipulate:
A government document shows that Cossette Communication Inc., solely responsible for Ottawa advertisement buys since 2003, spent $3,111,877.44 from Infrastructure Canada on advertising from Sept. 14 to Sept. 29.
The money was spent around the time of the release of the government's third economic report card.
The money on the above campaign would also have been spent during a month where the prospect of having an election was still on the table and the "no election" campaign from the government began. This particular $3 million ad onslaught likely helped with that government messaging too. There has got to be an interesting back story here on the timing of these ads and their planning to be told by someone.

The larger point here is the ethical one. Why Conservatives feel they have the right to continue spending so excessively on such self-serving and uninformative fluff while we go into deficit is a real puzzler.