Monday, June 14, 2010

G20 boondoggle watch, King Solomon version

1. More fuel for the barbie!
"This splitting of the baby – with apologies to King Solomon – between Muskoka and Toronto is said privately by one government official to have added as much as $400-million to the bill.

If only the federal government had a Department of Common Sense. The obvious answer, early on, would have been to make it one summit, one fence, one operation." (emphasis added)
$400 million...not feelin' the fiscal prudence! Yes, we're still in exclamation mode over this one, it deserves it. The decision to locate these events in two separate locations has been Stephen Harper's decision and his alone.

2. About that Conservative spin that the other locations who have hosted these summits recently are basically lying about the costs they incurred...that the Harper Conservatives are just telling the truth, in their transparent and open manner that we all have come to know and love, ahem. Where is their evidence? It's just nonsense spin. Take Pittsburgh which hosted the G20 in September 2009, widely reported to have spent $18 million in security costs for that summit, less than a year ago. If you look for anything in support of the Conservative claim that Pittsburgh is lying, you just can't find it. Even if you make a generous allowance for the G8 + G20 combination, the G8 always seeming for some reason to cost more than the G20, it still doesn't get you anywhere near our billion dollar figure.

3. Last note, if you haven't seen this video, on the security costs, it's a must see. Former RCMP official Bill Majcher offers a firm critique of the security spending decisions of the Harper government.