Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Permission to Sham Wow, ma'am?


I would like to know how this all works out in the Ethics Commissioner's office too:
Thank you for your letter of June 10, 2010, in which you indicated that you will not be conducting an inquiry or an examination into the allegations I have put forward against the Honourable Tony Clement, Minister of Industry, when he was the Minister of Health.

You refer to August 12, 2008, when an official from Mr. Clements’s Ministerial office called you to ask if Mr. Clement would be in violation of the Conflict of Interest Act if he appeared in a promotional video on behalf of Lord & Partners Ltd., a company in his riding. Based on the information provided to your office at that time, you relayed to him that it would not violate the Act.
Telephone clearance to sham wow! How does this actually work though? Is it an honour system of some kind that the Ethics Commissioner relies upon with such requests?
...I also request that you disclose whether you had any knowledge of the following facts when you approved Mr. Clement’s participation in the video:
• that Mr. Clement would be using his official title of Minister of Health and would be specifically representing himself as representing the Government of Canada in the promotional video; and

• that George Young, the individual who produced the video, was a close friend and key political supporter of Mr. Clement. Indeed, Mr. Young received a federal appointment that was directly authorized by Mr. Clement in 2009 to the board of directors of the Canadian Tourism Commission.
I'm sure Tony and the boys disclosed all that, right?

The ethics train wreck rolls on!