132

Andrew Coyne on the leaked Auditor General’s report into G8 spending

Your daily campaign minute with Maclean’s columnists


 

 

Andrew Coyne on the leaked Auditor General’s report into G8 spending

  1. I would like to have the whole 'stimulus' package investigated. I said when Harper first announced it that the recession was a' red light' for Harper to spend our tax dollars like crazy in conservative ridings and try to buy his majority. The stimulus was a 50 billion dollar conservative scam and the conservatives keep 'Harping' on Adscam.

  2. I would like to have the whole 'stimulus' package investigated. I said when Harper first announced it that the recession was a' red light' for Harper to spend our tax dollars like crazy in conservative ridings and try to buy his majority. The stimulus was a 50 billion dollar conservative scam and the conservatives keep 'Harping' on Adscam.

    • Doesn't the AGs full report on that come out some time this year?

    • Actually Proud Canadian – the stimulus was forced on the government by the LIB/NDP/BLOC. So pointing to it now and claiming it was Harper's fault is disingenuous at best.

      • If it was forced on the government, why are the Harperite bragging about it some much? Why all the money spent on signs and TV advertizing if the stimuls package was actually sombody elses idea? Are you prepared to acknowledge that the economic stability achieved in Canada was due to the good ideas provided by the opposition?

        Steve, you need to THINK before you post if you really intend to support Harper effectively. Thanks for providing the lead in.

        • Remember Flip Wilson? "The devil made me buy that dress!"

        • They're advertising it because it's evidence they actually did something.

          Whether that something had any effect or not is irrelevant. They can claim it did. They can claim they did it.

          They can also claim the moon is made of swiss cheese, and many CPC supporters will expect the Canada-arm to prepare them ham sandwiches out of it.

      • Harper committed to $30 billion per year of stimulus for two years at the G20 meeting preceding the coalition crisis. This line is bogus, unless Harper lied to the G20.

    • She already audited the stimulus spending. In fact, she offered praise for the way the stimulus cash was handled. As shocking to me as I'm sure it was with everyone else.

  3. The problem Mr. Coyne is that there is essentially an infinite number of scandals that "should" have been "bad news" for the Harperites. If the polls are remotely accurate, this will end up yet another scandal that will bounce off the dimwitted 40% of the populace who worship the Harper cult, and who would continue to support the conservatives if Harper personally knocked on their doors and sprayed pepper spray in their faces. There is still a strong market for fascism in this country.

  4. The problem Mr. Coyne is that there is essentially an infinite number of scandals that "should" have been "bad news" for the Harperites. If the polls are remotely accurate, this will end up yet another scandal that will bounce off the dimwitted 40% of the populace who worship the Harper cult, and who would continue to support the conservatives if Harper personally knocked on their doors and sprayed pepper spray in their faces. There is still a strong market for fascism in this country.

    • I can hear them now…Thank you Sir, may I have another.

    • No kidding. I think the entire sponsorship scandal could be repeated under Harper's watch, and the Conbots wouldn't bat an eye. How Harper has become the monster. Sad, really, given he'll probably get away with it. The Liberals should really do better at marketing the hell out of the Conservatives' array of ethical issues to get traction…

    • Congrats, Franz – you are today's Godwin's Law winner! Admirable restraint, too, for deferring to speculate the G8 monies were actually used to construct "relocation" camps and Harper commissioned security forces were sent out to break shop windows and seize property from certain ethno/cultural groups.

      • Congrats, GWF, you are today's clueless poster winner.. and so early too.

        Hint: Godwin's Law is in respect to Hitler, not fascism.

    • So 40% of Canadian voters are Harper cultists? That's an odd way to refer to 40% of your fellow compatriots.

  5. I can hear them now…Thank you Sir, may I have another.

  6. No kidding. I think the entire sponsorship scandal could be repeated under Harper's watch, and the Conbots wouldn't bat an eye. How Harper has become the monster. Sad, really, given he'll probably get away with it. The Liberals should really do better at marketing the hell out of the Conservatives' array of ethical issues to get traction…

  7. I wonder what Harper and his cronies would actually have to do to make the 40% of Canadians who support him wake up to his lack of integrity and of transparency. It seems he jutignores these hits and moves on and no one seems to notice.

  8. I wonder what Harper and his cronies would actually have to do to make the 40% of Canadians who support him wake up to his lack of integrity and of transparency. It seems he jutignores these hits and moves on and no one seems to notice.

    • I think that 40% is a little high; his bedrock stupid support is more like 24% or 30%; the rest might get smart eventually.

  9. Instead of securing and fortifying our border and national security infrastructure, Stephen Harper diverted funds to a Conservative MP's riding, building gazebos and porta-potties.

    This is truly an outrage. Harper's gotta go. This donut quaffing paper-pusher is completely out of his depth, and only his partisan hatchetmen have kept the public from realizing the true extent of his incompetence.

  10. Instead of securing and fortifying our border and national security infrastructure, Stephen Harper diverted funds to a Conservative MP's riding, building gazebos and porta-potties.

    This is truly an outrage. Harper's gotta go. This donut quaffing paper-pusher is completely out of his depth, and only his partisan hatchetmen have kept the public from realizing the true extent of his incompetence.

  11. Doesn't the AGs full report on that come out some time this year?

  12. 6% is about the percentage of errors in our present Government. 6% of the liberal criminals. We are very happy with Harpers direction, without Quebec. Why? Because Harper can count. The liberals think their 13 seats in Quebec will win them the election! Harper knows the 10 seats mean nothing, especially considering the huge cost, besides not wanting to deal with so much corruption, which the liberals thrive in. We will vote Harper, this election, AND next! By the way, the G8 spending was an investment in Ontario! Badly needed.

  13. 6% is about the percentage of errors in our present Government. 6% of the liberal criminals. We are very happy with Harpers direction, without Quebec. Why? Because Harper can count. The liberals think their 13 seats in Quebec will win them the election! Harper knows the 10 seats mean nothing, especially considering the huge cost, besides not wanting to deal with so much corruption, which the liberals thrive in. We will vote Harper, this election, AND next! By the way, the G8 spending was an investment in Ontario! Badly needed.

  14. Actually Proud Canadian – the stimulus was forced on the government by the LIB/NDP/BLOC. So pointing to it now and claiming it was Harper's fault is disingenuous at best.

  15. If it was forced on the government, why are the Harperite bragging about it some much? Why all the money spent on signs and TV advertizing if the stimuls package was actually sombody elses idea? Are you prepared to acknowledge that the economic stability achieved in Canada was due to the good ideas provided by the opposition?

    Steve, you need to THINK before you post if you really intend to support Harper effectively. Thanks for providing the lead in.

  16. Congrats, Franz – you are today's Godwin's Law winner! Admirable restraint, too, for deferring to speculate the G8 monies were actually used to construct "relocation" camps and Harper commissioned security forces were sent out to break shop windows and seize property from certain ethno/cultural groups.

  17. Well now; did you notice that it was HARPER who promised to send ANOTHER $2 billion to Quebec for a mythical HST harmonization. I'm sure that was some kind of an investment as well; couldn't possibly be trying to buy off Quebec voters I'm sure.

  18. Andrew, do you know which speech???

    "A Liberal fave is to realize a stabilizer on the eve of the leaders debate, to throw the main opponent off course. A classic case was the first English debate in 2006, when the Liberals released on debate day a speech that Mr. Harper had given years ago and none of us on his team even knew about. "

    From Flanagan and Duffy (nice, civil, informative back and forth, for a change) http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/elec

  19. Remember Flip Wilson? "The devil made me buy that dress!"

  20. I don't understand.

    I don't understand why Coyne doesn't mention anything about the media playing it fast and loose with this one.

    Sure, if the allegations are real, then the Conservatives have questions to answer. But what about the media?

    Does the media not play it fast and loose when a report has been stolen and such stolen property is then spread amongst media members? Is Coyne at all concerned about using stolen property for getting the message out?

    We are not talking about a 'whistle blowing case". The bureaucrat who stole this draft copy, did so knowing that a final report will be issued soon. This bureaucrat is not trying to bring something into the public domain which otherwise would have been hidden. The bureaucrat stole information and released it to the media not for whistle blowing purposes. And why is the media, Coyne included, not condemning such actions?

    Is it now ok to steal and to use stolen property for getting the message out??? And we are told not to trust Harper, but to trust the media???

  21. I think that 40% is a little high; his bedrock stupid support is more like 24% or 30%; the rest might get smart eventually.

  22. I don't understand.

    I don't understand why Coyne doesn't mention anything about the media playing it fast and loose with this one.

    Sure, if the allegations are real, then the Conservatives have questions to answer. But what about the media?

    Does the media not play it fast and loose when a report has been stolen and such stolen property is then spread amongst media members? Is Coyne at all concerned about using stolen property for getting the message out?

    We are not talking about a 'whistle blowing case". The bureaucrat who stole this draft copy, did so knowing that a final report will be issued soon. This bureaucrat is not trying to bring something into the public domain which otherwise would have been hidden. The bureaucrat stole information and released it to the media not for whistle blowing purposes. And why is the media, Coyne included, not condemning such actions?

    Is it now ok to steal and to use stolen property for getting the message out??? And we are told not to trust Harper, but to trust the media???

    • Explain how Baird came to have the second draft.
      All drafts are numbered, documented and to be returned to the Auditor General.
      No-one is allowed to photocopy or keep a copy.

      • Keep avoiding my questions, Griffin and others. The more you avoid the questions in regards to the media, the more Harper's support will climb.

        The voters aren't that dense. They understand that if the Conservatives are accused of wrongdoing, so must the bureaucrat and the media be accused in equal measure.

        Without realizing, the media is feeding support for Harper by being so overly anti-Harper. Many in the media have lost touch with reality.

      • "Explain how Baird came to have the second draft. "

        Maybe the brave "whistleblower" mandarin that gave the first draft to the opposition/MSM gave it to him.

    • Always the messenger is more important than the message, eh FV? 'tis to laugh.

      Last I checked, the media – that same anti-Conservative media that dug into and revealed Adscam and APEC and Shawinigate, etc by the way – are not "the" media and are not running for any elected office and not making decisions about how to spend our hard earned money and not spending our hard earned money on their friends.

      If you were genuinely upset about "stolen property" then you should be jumping up and down on the Conservatives even more for passing around copies of the draft report illegally both internally before all this happened and leaking it externally.

      • You have not understood a word I've written in my post.

        I clearly stated that the Conservatives have questions to answer.

        But if you want to live in a world in which the bureaucrat can steal at will and in which the media can then use such stolen information at will also, WITHOUT being held to account equally, well, then live in that world. I think it's a fake world. A dishonest world.

        During the adscam affair, information would not have come out had the media not played its role. In this case, the AG report is ready to be tabled to Parliament. You are turning yourself into a pretzel in order to be able to function in that fake world of yours. But go ahead, twist yourself into any pretzel shape you want. The election results will show how many Canadians still live in the real world.

        • We're in the middle of an election. The Cons have done what they can to delay and suppress that report. The Liberals tried to pass a motion permitting its disclosure even if Parliament was not sitting. The Cons have tried to block it at every chance.

          It's obvious why they don't want Canadians to know what they've been doing, why they shirk accountability. Especially when the report validates all of the criticisms of the Liberals over the last year on this, despite the Cons dismissals.

          I answered your faux issue about "what about the media". The media is not running for election. Time aplenty to address that. Addressing it now – or trying to get us to focus on that – is 100% an attempt at distraction from the only real issue here.

          Leaks happen everyday. The Cons themselves leaked this report far and wide even before it broke in the news.

          It is not everyday that we have an independent observer slamming the government, sorry, The Harper Government (TM) over abuses of government, possible illegal activity, mismanagement, deliberately misleading Parliament, etc.

          It seems more and more apparent that with The Harper Government (TM) it happens every day, but we don't find out about it every day.

          • You state: "We're in the middle of an election. The Cons have done what they can to delay and suppress that report. The Liberals tried to pass a motion permitting its disclosure even if Parliament was not sitting. The Cons have tried to block it at every chance."

            Why go any futher than reading past your first lie?

            The Liberals know very well that no such motion can be made outside of Parliament sitting. The Conservatives know it too, and Layton was asked by a reporter yesterday if he were to ask for the report to be released outside of a sitting Parliament would it not be an attempt at contempt ofParliament by Layton if he were to push for the final report to be released outside of Parliament sitting. The reporter understood how things work properly. Layton did not. And you simply do not care if any of the opposition parties would show contempt of Parliament. For you it only matters if the Conservatives are in contempt of Parliament.

            But go ahead. Join the media in trying to feed the voters lie after lie, and I will tell you that the Conservative numbers will go up because of it.

          • What lie?

            Are you saying that, back when Parliament was in session and the operations was meeting, that the Liberals did not actually introduce such a motion, a motion that said she would be allowed to release it if an election occurs? How is that outside of Parliament or in contempt? I think you are missing some – a lot – of facts here.

            If you are going to throw such accusations around, surely you'll explain it.

          • Why does it not sink into your understanding that you cannot have it both ways and expect to be taken seriously.

            Why, if the opposition parties combined, had a greater seat count than the Conservatives, why then did such motion not pass? Did the Liberals not have enough support for such motion to be passed??

            You can't have it both ways. The Liberals can't have it both ways. The public understands that you can't have it both ways. It's unrealistic to expect to have it both ways. People living in the real world understand that you can't have it both ways.

          • As Reagan said of Carter: "There you go again"

            You claim I lied. I asked you where. You ignore that and now claim I'm trying to have it both ways.

            What did I lie about FV? Where do I say the Liberals are trying to have it both ways? Simple questions FV. Please respond.

            If you want to demonstrate that you live in the real world, then please join us in it and relay some facts instead of all these unsubstantiated accusations.

          • You stated: "We're in the middle of an election. The Cons have done what they can to delay and suppress that report. The Liberals tried to pass a motion permitting its disclosure even if Parliament was not sitting. The Cons have tried to block it at every chance. "

            Ok, which way do you want to go with this? Do you want for the Liberals to say that going outside of Parliamentary rule is ok now? So, the LIberals are saying it is ok to go outside of parliamentary rules when it suits them, or when they think it is acceptable to do so?

            Tell me if the release of the report outside of parliament sitting, would be in accordance with parliamentary rule. If you and the Liberals think it is outside of parliamentary rules but should be done any ways, then why do the Liberals complain about breaking parliamentary rules?

            Which way do you and the Liberals want to argue? This way or that way. Please, tell me before we go any further, because trying to debate with a both-sider is impossible.

          • Are you really that slow or just pretending to be that slow?

            Well, in case you really are that slow, let me explain. And I'll type really slowly for your sake.

            There are two rules at issue here.

            First: no one may make any copies or distribute copies of the report until it is officially released unless permitted to by the AG. Some bureaucrat had a legit copy but the original report clearly states that he refused to give a copy or make a copy available to the reporter so the bureaucrat did not break this rule though without a doubt broke some confidentiality laws. The Conservatives on the other hand seemed to have been passing copies of this draft report around to anyone who wanted it. Which is why Fraser is now investigating them as well.

          • Are you really that slow or just pretending to be that slow? Well, in case you really are that slow, let me explain. And I'll type really slowly for your sake. There are two rules at issue here.

            First: no one may make any copies or distribute copies of the report until it is officially released unless permitted to by the AG. Some bureaucrat had a legit copy and leaked it but refused to make a copy for the reporter so he didn't break this law (though obviously broke some confidentiality laws). The Cons were passing copies of this draft report to anyone who wanted it. Which is why Fraser is now investigating them as well.

          • Are you really that slow or just pretending to be that slow? Well, in case you really are that slow, let me explain. And I'll type really slowly for your sake. There are two rules at issue here.

            First: no one may make any copies or distribute copies of the report until it is officially released unless permitted to by the AG. Some bureaucrat had a legit copy and leaked it but refused to make a copy for the reporter so he didn't break this law (though obviously broke some confidentiality laws). The Cons were passing copies of this draft report to anyone who wanted it. Which is why Fraser is now investigating them as well.

            Second, the rules for release to the public/Parliament that apply to Fraser are set by Parliament. Parliament is free to change its release rules at any time. The Liberals proposed to allow the public release as soon as it was ready, whether or not Parliament was sitting. That's been done lots before like with the Budget Office. The Conservatives were scared sh*tless about this report and blocked that with the help of their former coalition partners the NDP.

            So again, where have I lied,FV. Please, tell me before we go any further, because trying to debate with a both-sider and someone who throws up insults without any substance is impossible.

          • Interestingly, the Cons are now in favour of releasing the report when they were afraid of it before, knowing it can't be released now. Talk about trying to have it both ways! But that is Harper's way!!

          • Ted, you're a trooper for trying to have a rational discussion with FV. Good job.

          • " The Liberals tried to pass a motion permitting its disclosure even if Parliament was not sitting."

            Translation: The Liberals tried to force the AG to break the law.

            "The Cons have tried to block it at every chance."

            Translation: Cognizant that the opposition was on the verge of forcing an unnecessary election, the CPC opted not to co-operate with them in said efforts to turn the AG into a criminal and/or obtain further election fodder on the eve of the election.

            "Leaks happen everyday"

            Agreed – it's high time to repeal all those quaint "confidentiality" rules that are to maintain the integrity of our parliamentary institutions like the AGs office.

            "It is not everyday that we have an independent observer slamming the government, sorry, The Harper Government (TM) over abuses of government, possible illegal activity, mismanagement, deliberately misleading Parliament, etc."

            I bet if you asked her, the AG would be a little more pissed right about the person who leaked the first draft of her report and breached the confidentiality of her office than she is about The Harper Government (TM).

          • Where did the Liberals try to force the AG to break the law? The motion would have given her permission to release the report whenever it was ready. The law is set by Parliament so if they say it's ok then it's ok.

            As for the AG being pissed off, she is and not just with the Conservatives misleading Canadians about what she said. She has launched an investigation into the release of the report. An investigation into the release of both drafts of the report, including the one the Conservatives were illegally circulating around to who knows who over the last month or so. How on earth does Ryan Sparrow have a copy of that report? How on earth does Baird have a copy of that report? They are not allowed to have copies of that – that's a clear violation of law. Not that that has ever stopped these clowns in government.

          • "The motion would have given her permission to release the report whenever it was ready. The law is set by Parliament so if they say it's ok then it's ok"

            Er, not quite – the law would have had have been brought as a motion in the H of C, debated, voted on, referred to committee, brought back into the H of C, voted on, then sent on the the Senate to go through the same process. Don't think Iggy would have been prepared to wait, although I suspect you know his mind better than I.

            Furthermore, the change in law the Libs were pushing for presumably would have been a "one off", i.e. we understand and respect that the AG, an independent "watchdog"should therefore only report to parliament in a way that engages parliamentary process by giving the opposition bases for challenging the government and the government bases for justifying their fiscal management, but for one time only – shortly after a bitter, nasty election campaign commences – we think the AG should abandon convention and release her report to the public at large so we can invoke her name and office wholly to try to gain politcal advantage. But then the cursed CPC spoiled the whole thing by not going along with it.

          • "She has launched an investigation into the release of the report. An investigation into the release of both drafts of the report, including the one the Conservatives were illegally circulating around to who knows who over the last month or so. How on earth does Ryan Sparrow have a copy of that report? How on earth does Baird have a copy of that report? They are not allowed to have copies of that – that's a clear violation of law."

            I suspect Baird has a copy because – are you sitting down tedbetts – the government GETS A COPY to review and provide a response to the AG before she publishes her final report. An audit that does not provide the person being audited with a preliminary draft of the auditor's report and an invitation to provide comment or further info. is not an audit. Seriously – do some reading up on the audit function before you spout off about "illegally circulating" audit reports and "clear violations of the law".

            BTW, I don't recall hearing anything about "the Conservatives … illegally circulating around (draft AG reports) to who knows who over the last month or so" – just another cover-up by the Harper-loving folk at the Toronto Star and CBC or am I simply the last to know?

          • So let me see if I got your logic right on this.

            The Liberals, by trying to change the law to allow disclosure of the damning report, are actually encouraging the breaking of the law? Yup. That makes sense.

            I love it when a hyper-partisan is caught making stuff up, then when caught in a rambling attempt at avoid the subject actually proves they even knew they were making stuff up.

            Thanks for agreeing with me but with that lame effort you sound like you work and write for the 2010 Conservative war room.

          • Couldn't have said it better myself – a rare bouquet to a Dipper:

            "Chistopherson also defended a decision to block a motion that could have allowed Fraser's report on G8 spending to be released during the election. The Hamilton Centre NDP candidate told reporters on Tuesday that a motion came up before the House of Commons's public accounts committee that would have opened the door to permitting the auditor general's report to be released when Parliament was not in session.
            The NDP voted with the Conservatives on March 24 to put off the motion to a future meeting. However, the Conservative minority government fell on March 25. Christopherson, who was vice-chair of the Commons committee, said on Tuesday, however, that the Liberal request came up on short notice without time to examine the proposal or bring in the auditor general to discuss the change in policy.

            "Of course I realized there was some partisan advantage for me, and other MPs, if I allowed this to happen, but it was not in keeping with the democratic traditions of Parliament, nor was it respectful of the office of the auditor," Christopherson said.

            "The hypocrisy of the move was too much. Political parties have done their fair share of sitting on auditor general reports in the past."

            (hmmmm – which political party do you think he might have been referring to – hmmm hmmm hmmm)

        • In other words, you'd rather Canadians only find out about this whole affair after Steve's got his majority? This is material information in the public interest.

          • No, I have never said that I'd rather have Canadians find out after the elections. Please, don't put words into my mouth.

            The opposition parties had as much say about when an election was called as anyone of the Conservatives. I think it would have been better for the country had an election not been called. But such is never my choice.

            However, Layton or Ignatieff did have a choice. And if they are now soooo concerned about reports and knowing full well before going into an election that the report would have been tabled on April 5, I wonder why the hurry for an election?

            Within the Conservative budget, some of the NDP and Liberal demands were met. Are we now to believe that ALL of the opposition demands should have been met within a Conservative government presented budget? If you believe that than you do not understand how outcome of elections work.; in the previous parliament, the Conservative party had more seats than the LIbs and NDP combined, and of course the budget should reflect such elected seat count. The least seats elected don't decide on budgets, although they did get input.

            The BQ has never gathered seats in the House on putting forth a federal financial outlook, so their demands are never federal in nature and should therefore not count within federal budget deliberations. Why should a provincial/separatist party have influence over a Canadian federal budget? It shouldn't.

          • I think you're mistaken. The budget wasn't voted on. The government was defeated after being found in contempt. Yeah, I know you don't think it was a sincere finding, but I find it troubling that Parliament was not being respected by submitting requested documents and persons for testimony in legitimate proceedings. The government works for parliament and answers to it. Acting otherwise is worthy of contempt, in both the generic and this specific meaning of the word.

          • I know the budget wasn't voted on. Man, can we ever debate anything here.

            It's not about me finding anything sincere or not. It's not the point what I think about it. The point is that an election call was triggered on the confidence motion. Such was the decision of the opposition parties. That is their choice. But then the opposition parties sould not now come back and pretend that the HOuse is still sitting, because it is not sitting at the moment, and they should have been aware of that before they had triggered the election call.

          • Well, like I said, Baird can leak the final report he presumably has in his possession as well as he leaked the second draft. He's already crossed the Rubicon on document leaking, so why stop now?

          • My initial post on this was in regards to the media and its decision not to condemn the illegal theft of the draft report.

            But in any case, this is what I think has been going on:

            The opposition parties had decided to trigger an election on the confidence motion, rather than triggering an election on the presented budget. That is the opposition's choice.

            The majority of voters have not agreed so far that the confidence motion was reason enough to have triggered an election. Because Conservative support has not fallen over the contempt issue, the opposition parties have seen it fit to grab onto a stolen draft report, the media is likewise not condemning the theft of a report and thereby, once again, the opposition parties together with certain members of the media, are now trying for a second time to have the confidence of the Conservatives thrown in question.

            I'd say, try doing it without having to rely on stolen property. Don't try to convince the voter that the Conservatives are un-ethical, if the opposition parties and some in the media alike, are willing to be un-ethical themselves when trying to convince the conservatives to be un-ethical.

          • There's no evidence any of the opposition parties had anything to do with this. Joan Bryden said it was someone who had legitimate possession of the report who let her see it and make notes. Therefore, it was likely a civil servant, and possibly one with allegiance to one of the opposition parties or just anti-Conservative. The report wasn't stolen per se, it was illegally shown to someone who was not authorized to see it. But then, someone in the Conservative organization has similarly leaked the second draft. I didn't see anyone in the media (some partisan commentators said something) say anything about how how the leak by the government of the second draft report as being illegal, either. So, what's your point? You seem to be just distracting from the subject of the draft report.

          • In general, the news media report. They aren't in the business of condemning.
            I expect some media pundits and commentators will agree with you, that the leak is a terrible thing. Others will disagree. I expect both viewpoints will be aired in the media.

            Why are you attacking the media about the leak?

    • That is quite possibly the stupidest comment I've ever read (and you've got some real competition!)

      Watergate likely relied on 'stolen' documents. Adscam coming to light likely relied on 'stolen' documents. Almost every media exposure of government corruption or incompetence by governments in the Western world likely rely on what you would call 'stolen' documents.

      Thankfully we have a free press in this country – there are many who would like to write laws limiting the media's ability on this front. Fortunately, anyone who is even remotely interested in free speech would never even enterain this notion.

      If you care even a smidgen about free speech and a free press you would not have posted the comment above.

  23. Explain how Baird came to have the second draft.
    All drafts are numbered, documented and to be returned to the Auditor General.
    No-one is allowed to photocopy or keep a copy.

  24. Keep avoiding my questions, Griffin and others. The more you avoid the questions in regards to the media, the more Harper's support will climb.

    The voters aren't that dense. They understand that if the Conservatives are accused of wrongdoing, so must the bureaucrat and the media be accused in equal measure.

    Without realizing, the media is feeding support for Harper by being so overly anti-Harper. Many in the media have lost touch with reality.

  25. Always the messenger is more important than the message, eh FV? 'tis to laugh.

    Last I checked, the media – that same anti-Conservative media that dug into and revealed Adscam and APEC and Shawinigate, etc by the way – are not "the" media and are not running for any elected office and not making decisions about how to spend our hard earned money and not spending our hard earned money on their friends.

    If you were genuinely upset about "stolen property" then you should be jumping up and down on the Conservatives even more for passing around copies of the draft report illegally both internally before all this happened and leaking it externally.

  26. They're advertising it because it's evidence they actually did something.

    Whether that something had any effect or not is irrelevant. They can claim it did. They can claim they did it.

    They can also claim the moon is made of swiss cheese, and many CPC supporters will expect the Canada-arm to prepare them ham sandwiches out of it.

  27. Congrats, GWF, you are today's clueless poster winner.. and so early too.

    Hint: Godwin's Law is in respect to Hitler, not fascism.

  28. Don't hold you breath, Ignatieff is likely to match.

  29. Don't hold you breath, Ignatieff is likely to match.

  30. You have not understood a word I've written in my post.

    I clearly stated that the Conservatives have questions to answer.

    But if you want to live in a world in which the bureaucrat can steal at will and in which the media can then use such stolen information at will also, WITHOUT being held to account equally, well, then live in that world. I think it's a fake world. A dishonest world.

    During the adscam affair, information would not have come out had the media not played its role. In this case, the AG report is ready to be tabled to Parliament. You are turning yourself into a pretzel in order to be able to function in that fake world of yours. But go ahead, twist yourself into any pretzel shape you want. The election results will show how many Canadians still live in the real world.

  31. One thing is puzzling me. I thought i read somewhere that the final report is already in the hands of the PCO. So why can't Harper release it?

  32. One thing is puzzling me. I thought i read somewhere that the final report is already in the hands of the PCO. So why can't Harper release it?

    • Have you not read Ms.Fraser's statement?

      Why do you just ignore what has been said by her just yesterday?

      That caution should be taken when commenting on the leaked report.

      • Don't you mean leaked report[s] ?

    • Because it is the AG's report to release, not Harpers, and she has said she is bound by statute not to release any report to anybody but parliament and the PCO is not parliament.

  33. We're in the middle of an election. The Cons have done what they can to delay and suppress that report. The Liberals tried to pass a motion permitting its disclosure even if Parliament was not sitting. The Cons have tried to block it at every chance.

    It's obvious why they don't want Canadians to know what they've been doing, why they shirk accountability. Especially when the report validates all of the criticisms of the Liberals over the last year on this, despite the Cons dismissals.

    I answered your faux issue about "what about the media". The media is not running for election. Time aplenty to address that. Addressing it now – or trying to get us to focus on that – is 100% an attempt at distraction from the only real issue here.

    Leaks happen everyday. The Cons themselves leaked this report far and wide even before it broke in the news.

    It is not everyday that we have an independent observer slamming the government, sorry, The Harper Government (TM) over abuses of government, possible illegal activity, mismanagement, deliberately misleading Parliament, etc.

    It seems more and more apparent that with The Harper Government (TM) it happens every day, but we don't find out about it every day.

  34. You state: "We're in the middle of an election. The Cons have done what they can to delay and suppress that report. The Liberals tried to pass a motion permitting its disclosure even if Parliament was not sitting. The Cons have tried to block it at every chance."

    Why go any futher than reading past your first lie?

    The Liberals know very well that no such motion can be made outside of Parliament sitting. The Conservatives know it too, and Layton was asked by a reporter yesterday if he were to ask for the report to be released outside of a sitting Parliament would it not be an attempt at contempt ofParliament by Layton if he were to push for the final report to be released outside of Parliament sitting. The reporter understood how things work properly. Layton did not. And you simply do not care if any of the opposition parties would show contempt of Parliament. For you it only matters if the Conservatives are in contempt of Parliament.

    But go ahead. Join the media in trying to feed the voters lie after lie, and I will tell you that the Conservative numbers will go up because of it.

  35. Have you not read Ms.Fraser's statement?

    Why do you just ignore what has been said by her just yesterday?

    That caution should be taken when commenting on the leaked report.

  36. Perhaps the news takes awhile to reach the Sunshine Coast, but Quebec harmonized their sales tax with the GST in the mid-90s.

  37. "Explain how Baird came to have the second draft. "

    Maybe the brave "whistleblower" mandarin that gave the first draft to the opposition/MSM gave it to him.

  38. Because it is the AG's report to release, not Harpers, and she has said she is bound by statute not to release any report to anybody but parliament and the PCO is not parliament.

  39. What lie?

    Are you saying that, back when Parliament was in session and the operations was meeting, that the Liberals did not actually introduce such a motion, a motion that said she would be allowed to release it if an election occurs? How is that outside of Parliament or in contempt? I think you are missing some – a lot – of facts here.

    If you are going to throw such accusations around, surely you'll explain it.

  40. " The Liberals tried to pass a motion permitting its disclosure even if Parliament was not sitting."

    Translation: The Liberals tried to force the AG to break the law.

    "The Cons have tried to block it at every chance."

    Translation: Cognizant that the opposition was on the verge of forcing an unnecessary election, the CPC opted not to co-operate with them in said efforts to turn the AG into a criminal and/or obtain further election fodder on the eve of the election.

    "Leaks happen everyday"

    Agreed – it's high time to repeal all those quaint "confidentiality" rules that are to maintain the integrity of our parliamentary institutions like the AGs office.

    "It is not everyday that we have an independent observer slamming the government, sorry, The Harper Government (TM) over abuses of government, possible illegal activity, mismanagement, deliberately misleading Parliament, etc."

    I bet if you asked her, the AG would be a little more pissed right about the person who leaked the first draft of her report and breached the confidentiality of her office than she is about The Harper Government (TM).

  41. Why does it not sink into your understanding that you cannot have it both ways and expect to be taken seriously.

    Why, if the opposition parties combined, had a greater seat count than the Conservatives, why then did such motion not pass? Did the Liberals not have enough support for such motion to be passed??

    You can't have it both ways. The Liberals can't have it both ways. The public understands that you can't have it both ways. It's unrealistic to expect to have it both ways. People living in the real world understand that you can't have it both ways.

  42. Harper committed to $30 billion per year of stimulus for two years at the G20 meeting preceding the coalition crisis. This line is bogus, unless Harper lied to the G20.

  43. In other words, you'd rather Canadians only find out about this whole affair after Steve's got his majority? This is material information in the public interest.

  44. Since Baird already leaked the draft, and has the final report in his possession, why not leak the final report as well? I mean, he's already crossed the line. I find this line of defense unconvincing.

  45. No, I have never said that I'd rather have Canadians find out after the elections. Please, don't put words into my mouth.

    The opposition parties had as much say about when an election was called as anyone of the Conservatives. I think it would have been better for the country had an election not been called. But such is never my choice.

    However, Layton or Ignatieff did have a choice. And if they are now soooo concerned about reports and knowing full well before going into an election that the report would have been tabled on April 5, I wonder why the hurry for an election?

    Within the Conservative budget, some of the NDP and Liberal demands were met. Are we now to believe that ALL of the opposition demands should have been met within a Conservative government presented budget? If you believe that than you do not understand how outcome of elections work.; in the previous parliament, the Conservative party had more seats than the LIbs and NDP combined, and of course the budget should reflect such elected seat count. The least seats elected don't decide on budgets, although they did get input.

    The BQ has never gathered seats in the House on putting forth a federal financial outlook, so their demands are never federal in nature and should therefore not count within federal budget deliberations. Why should a provincial/separatist party have influence over a Canadian federal budget? It shouldn't.

  46. As Reagan said of Carter: "There you go again"

    You claim I lied. I asked you where. You ignore that and now claim I'm trying to have it both ways.

    What did I lie about FV? Where do I say the Liberals are trying to have it both ways? Simple questions FV. Please respond.

    If you want to demonstrate that you live in the real world, then please join us in it and relay some facts instead of all these unsubstantiated accusations.

  47. Where did the Liberals try to force the AG to break the law? The motion would have given her permission to release the report whenever it was ready. The law is set by Parliament so if they say it's ok then it's ok.

    As for the AG being pissed off, she is and not just with the Conservatives misleading Canadians about what she said. She has launched an investigation into the release of the report. An investigation into the release of both drafts of the report, including the one the Conservatives were illegally circulating around to who knows who over the last month or so. How on earth does Ryan Sparrow have a copy of that report? How on earth does Baird have a copy of that report? They are not allowed to have copies of that – that's a clear violation of law. Not that that has ever stopped these clowns in government.

  48. I think you're mistaken. The budget wasn't voted on. The government was defeated after being found in contempt. Yeah, I know you don't think it was a sincere finding, but I find it troubling that Parliament was not being respected by submitting requested documents and persons for testimony in legitimate proceedings. The government works for parliament and answers to it. Acting otherwise is worthy of contempt, in both the generic and this specific meaning of the word.

  49. You stated: "We're in the middle of an election. The Cons have done what they can to delay and suppress that report. The Liberals tried to pass a motion permitting its disclosure even if Parliament was not sitting. The Cons have tried to block it at every chance. "

    Ok, which way do you want to go with this? Do you want for the Liberals to say that going outside of Parliamentary rule is ok now? So, the LIberals are saying it is ok to go outside of parliamentary rules when it suits them, or when they think it is acceptable to do so?

    Tell me if the release of the report outside of parliament sitting, would be in accordance with parliamentary rule. If you and the Liberals think it is outside of parliamentary rules but should be done any ways, then why do the Liberals complain about breaking parliamentary rules?

    Which way do you and the Liberals want to argue? This way or that way. Please, tell me before we go any further, because trying to debate with a both-sider is impossible.

  50. I know the budget wasn't voted on. Man, can we ever debate anything here.

    It's not about me finding anything sincere or not. It's not the point what I think about it. The point is that an election call was triggered on the confidence motion. Such was the decision of the opposition parties. That is their choice. But then the opposition parties sould not now come back and pretend that the HOuse is still sitting, because it is not sitting at the moment, and they should have been aware of that before they had triggered the election call.

  51. Don't you mean leaked report[s] ?

  52. Well, like I said, Baird can leak the final report he presumably has in his possession as well as he leaked the second draft. He's already crossed the Rubicon on document leaking, so why stop now?

  53. "The motion would have given her permission to release the report whenever it was ready. The law is set by Parliament so if they say it's ok then it's ok"

    Er, not quite – the law would have had have been brought as a motion in the H of C, debated, voted on, referred to committee, brought back into the H of C, voted on, then sent on the the Senate to go through the same process. Don't think Iggy would have been prepared to wait, although I suspect you know his mind better than I.

    Furthermore, the change in law the Libs were pushing for presumably would have been a "one off", i.e. we understand and respect that the AG, an independent "watchdog"should therefore only report to parliament in a way that engages parliamentary process by giving the opposition bases for challenging the government and the government bases for justifying their fiscal management, but for one time only – shortly after a bitter, nasty election campaign commences – we think the AG should abandon convention and release her report to the public at large so we can invoke her name and office wholly to try to gain politcal advantage. But then the cursed CPC spoiled the whole thing by not going along with it.

  54. "She has launched an investigation into the release of the report. An investigation into the release of both drafts of the report, including the one the Conservatives were illegally circulating around to who knows who over the last month or so. How on earth does Ryan Sparrow have a copy of that report? How on earth does Baird have a copy of that report? They are not allowed to have copies of that – that's a clear violation of law."

    I suspect Baird has a copy because – are you sitting down tedbetts – the government GETS A COPY to review and provide a response to the AG before she publishes her final report. An audit that does not provide the person being audited with a preliminary draft of the auditor's report and an invitation to provide comment or further info. is not an audit. Seriously – do some reading up on the audit function before you spout off about "illegally circulating" audit reports and "clear violations of the law".

    BTW, I don't recall hearing anything about "the Conservatives … illegally circulating around (draft AG reports) to who knows who over the last month or so" – just another cover-up by the Harper-loving folk at the Toronto Star and CBC or am I simply the last to know?

  55. Are you really that slow or just pretending to be that slow?

    Well, in case you really are that slow, let me explain. And I'll type really slowly for your sake.

    There are two rules at issue here.

    First: no one may make any copies or distribute copies of the report until it is officially released unless permitted to by the AG. Some bureaucrat had a legit copy but the original report clearly states that he refused to give a copy or make a copy available to the reporter so the bureaucrat did not break this rule though without a doubt broke some confidentiality laws. The Conservatives on the other hand seemed to have been passing copies of this draft report around to anyone who wanted it. Which is why Fraser is now investigating them as well.

  56. Are you really that slow or just pretending to be that slow? Well, in case you really are that slow, let me explain. And I'll type really slowly for your sake. There are two rules at issue here.

    First: no one may make any copies or distribute copies of the report until it is officially released unless permitted to by the AG. Some bureaucrat had a legit copy and leaked it but refused to make a copy for the reporter so he didn't break this law (though obviously broke some confidentiality laws). The Cons were passing copies of this draft report to anyone who wanted it. Which is why Fraser is now investigating them as well.

  57. Are you really that slow or just pretending to be that slow? Well, in case you really are that slow, let me explain. And I'll type really slowly for your sake. There are two rules at issue here.

    First: no one may make any copies or distribute copies of the report until it is officially released unless permitted to by the AG. Some bureaucrat had a legit copy and leaked it but refused to make a copy for the reporter so he didn't break this law (though obviously broke some confidentiality laws). The Cons were passing copies of this draft report to anyone who wanted it. Which is why Fraser is now investigating them as well.

    Second, the rules for release to the public/Parliament that apply to Fraser are set by Parliament. Parliament is free to change its release rules at any time. The Liberals proposed to allow the public release as soon as it was ready, whether or not Parliament was sitting. That's been done lots before like with the Budget Office. The Conservatives were scared sh*tless about this report and blocked that with the help of their former coalition partners the NDP.

    So again, where have I lied,FV. Please, tell me before we go any further, because trying to debate with a both-sider and someone who throws up insults without any substance is impossible.

  58. Interestingly, the Cons are now in favour of releasing the report when they were afraid of it before, knowing it can't be released now. Talk about trying to have it both ways! But that is Harper's way!!

  59. Because Baird HASN'T already leaked the draft – in response to the leak of the first report, Baird stated that the contentious AG comments in the leaked draft do not appear in later drafts. He has therefore not crossed any line and appears not prepared to cross it now by respecting the position of the AG herself that the final report not be released.

  60. My initial post on this was in regards to the media and its decision not to condemn the illegal theft of the draft report.

    But in any case, this is what I think has been going on:

    The opposition parties had decided to trigger an election on the confidence motion, rather than triggering an election on the presented budget. That is the opposition's choice.

    The majority of voters have not agreed so far that the confidence motion was reason enough to have triggered an election. Because Conservative support has not fallen over the contempt issue, the opposition parties have seen it fit to grab onto a stolen draft report, the media is likewise not condemning the theft of a report and thereby, once again, the opposition parties together with certain members of the media, are now trying for a second time to have the confidence of the Conservatives thrown in question.

    I'd say, try doing it without having to rely on stolen property. Don't try to convince the voter that the Conservatives are un-ethical, if the opposition parties and some in the media alike, are willing to be un-ethical themselves when trying to convince the conservatives to be un-ethical.

  61. So let me see if I got your logic right on this.

    The Liberals, by trying to change the law to allow disclosure of the damning report, are actually encouraging the breaking of the law? Yup. That makes sense.

    I love it when a hyper-partisan is caught making stuff up, then when caught in a rambling attempt at avoid the subject actually proves they even knew they were making stuff up.

    Thanks for agreeing with me but with that lame effort you sound like you work and write for the 2010 Conservative war room.

  62. That is quite possibly the stupidest comment I've ever read (and you've got some real competition!)

    Watergate likely relied on 'stolen' documents. Adscam coming to light likely relied on 'stolen' documents. Almost every media exposure of government corruption or incompetence by governments in the Western world likely rely on what you would call 'stolen' documents.

    Thankfully we have a free press in this country – there are many who would like to write laws limiting the media's ability on this front. Fortunately, anyone who is even remotely interested in free speech would never even enterain this notion.

    If you care even a smidgen about free speech and a free press you would not have posted the comment above.

  63. There's no evidence any of the opposition parties had anything to do with this. Joan Bryden said it was someone who had legitimate possession of the report who let her see it and make notes. Therefore, it was likely a civil servant, and possibly one with allegiance to one of the opposition parties or just anti-Conservative. The report wasn't stolen per se, it was illegally shown to someone who was not authorized to see it. But then, someone in the Conservative organization has similarly leaked the second draft. I didn't see anyone in the media (some partisan commentators said something) say anything about how how the leak by the government of the second draft report as being illegal, either. So, what's your point? You seem to be just distracting from the subject of the draft report.

  64. Baird or someone else in their organization leaked the second draft of the report in response to the first leak. They are just as guilty of leaking documents.

    Even commenting on the content of the report constitutes a leak, so…

  65. Dictatorship with minority!

    Majority?! LOL! can you imagine the Harper regime with a majority government?! SCARY!.

    • Ugh stop being such a drama queen. How is this anything like a dictatorship? So the government MAY have lied about how money was spent (which is not even proven yet). What else do you expect from politicians? The conservatives and Stephen Harper are by far the best and most intelligent choice to run the country.

  66. Baird or someone else in their organization leaked the second draft of the report in response to the first leak. They are just as guilty of leaking documents.

    Even commenting on the content of the report constitutes a leak, so…

    • "They are just as guilty of leaking documents."

      I see. Not to concede the point, but assuming what Baird did in response to the first leak constitutes a second leak, you apparently are of the view that the proper response to a barrage of MSM questions/opponent hectoring about a comment in an illegally released document that is demonstrably inaccurate is…do nothing. I hope that sort of brilliant political strategizing is being put to good use by the Libs or Dippers.

  67. In general, the news media report. They aren't in the business of condemning.
    I expect some media pundits and commentators will agree with you, that the leak is a terrible thing. Others will disagree. I expect both viewpoints will be aired in the media.

    Why are you attacking the media about the leak?

  68. WHERE DID THE 14.OOO DOLLAS FOR THE GLOW STICKS GO DID ANYONE SEE THEM WHO WAS WATCHING ALL OUR MONEY BE USED THIS WAY AND WHAT ABOUT THESE PORTY POTTYS WILL WE EVER SEE THE COMPLETE BRACKDOWN OR WILL THIS BE FLUSHED DOWN THESE FANCEY PORTY POTTYS I THINK AS A VOTER I WOULD TO KNOW IF THIS CAN HAPPEN AGAIN YOU TAKE SO MUCH IN TAXES AND WASTE IT AS YOU SEE FIT WHEN DO WE GET A SAY IN HOW ARE TAX MONEY IS SPENT

  69. "They are just as guilty of leaking documents."

    I see. Not to concede the point, but assuming what Baird did in response to the first leak constitutes a second leak, you apparently are of the view that the proper response to a barrage of MSM questions/opponent hectoring about a comment in an illegally released document that is demonstrably inaccurate is…do nothing. I hope that sort of brilliant political strategizing is being put to good use by the Libs or Dippers.

  70. WHERE DID THE 14.OOO DOLLAS FOR THE GLOW STICKS GO DID ANYONE SEE THEM WHO WAS WATCHING ALL OUR MONEY BE USED THIS WAY AND WHAT ABOUT THESE PORTY POTTYS WILL WE EVER SEE THE COMPLETE BRACKDOWN OR WILL THIS BE FLUSHED DOWN THESE FANCEY PORTY POTTYS I THINK AS A VOTER I WOULD TO KNOW IF THIS CAN HAPPEN AGAIN YOU TAKE SO MUCH IN TAXES AND WASTE IT AS YOU SEE FIT WHEN DO WE GET A SAY IN HOW ARE TAX MONEY IS SPENT

  71. No, the demand to break the law is what's been happening in the last 24 hours, as the Libs clamor for the final report to be released, notwithstanding they failed in the effort you allege they to have exerted to change a fundamental aspect of the office of the Auditor General in the minutes leading up to the non-confidence motion.

    If the Libs wanted the report out before the election, why didn't they wait another week until April 5 to pull the plug? Perchance, is it because the report isn't as damning as you claim?

    And while you're anxiously awaiting this report, tedbetts (and taking a break from informing yourself about her office), why don't you look through other recent AG reports on the fiscal management of the Conservative government (there have already been five, in case you didn't know) and then – just for fun! – compare and contrast with one from the Chretien era!

    BTW, it's 2011, notwithstanding the tendancy of the likes of you want to live in the past.

  72. Couldn't have said it better myself – a rare bouquet to a Dipper:

    "Chistopherson also defended a decision to block a motion that could have allowed Fraser's report on G8 spending to be released during the election. The Hamilton Centre NDP candidate told reporters on Tuesday that a motion came up before the House of Commons's public accounts committee that would have opened the door to permitting the auditor general's report to be released when Parliament was not in session.
    The NDP voted with the Conservatives on March 24 to put off the motion to a future meeting. However, the Conservative minority government fell on March 25. Christopherson, who was vice-chair of the Commons committee, said on Tuesday, however, that the Liberal request came up on short notice without time to examine the proposal or bring in the auditor general to discuss the change in policy.

    "Of course I realized there was some partisan advantage for me, and other MPs, if I allowed this to happen, but it was not in keeping with the democratic traditions of Parliament, nor was it respectful of the office of the auditor," Christopherson said.

    "The hypocrisy of the move was too much. Political parties have done their fair share of sitting on auditor general reports in the past."

    (hmmmm – which political party do you think he might have been referring to – hmmm hmmm hmmm)

  73. She already audited the stimulus spending. In fact, she offered praise for the way the stimulus cash was handled. As shocking to me as I'm sure it was with everyone else.

  74. So 40% of Canadian voters are Harper cultists? That's an odd way to refer to 40% of your fellow compatriots.

  75. Ugh stop being such a drama queen. How is this anything like a dictatorship? So the government MAY have lied about how money was spent (which is not even proven yet). What else do you expect from politicians? The conservatives and Stephen Harper are by far the best and most intelligent choice to run the country.

  76. If you belive (oops, not Ponuru) Goldberg is a true intellectual with valid arguments, please pass me some of what you're smoking.

  77. If you belive (oops, not Ponuru) Goldberg is a true intellectual with valid arguments, please pass me some of what you're smoking.

  78. Ted, you're a trooper for trying to have a rational discussion with FV. Good job.

  79. Because attacking the media for the leak distracts from the actual content of the report. Spin spin spinarama.

Sign in to comment.