How much is that cabinet in the window? (VI)


From Canadian Press.

“Finance Minister Jim Flaherty will use Thursday’s economic update to spread the pain of the economic downturn to politicians and top bureaucrats. A senior government official told The Canadian Press that the update will contain some high-profile measures to control discretionary spending. The source wouldn’t confirm details, but there will likely be compensation restrictions for senior public servants and MPs.”

(Ahem. See previously: “What political benefit would Stephen Harper’s government gain from showing restraint in regards to its own compensation?”)

MPs were being asked about this after QP today. A few of the more entertaining exchanges.

Reporter: Name one thing you’d give up right now.

Jack Layton: Well I’m thinking certainly personally about switching to the train more often and as well, seeing if we can’t organize some meetings electronically instead of travelling to them. The technology has advanced a long way and that may be one way that we can save some money.


Reporter: What about the free food you get here?  Lunch?

Mike Savage: It’s not that great. 


Reporter: It looks like they’re going to announce some kind of a restraint or cutbacks on compensation for senior bureaucrats and members of parliament, politicians.  Can you think of something you could give up right now that would help in that?

Scott Brison: The Minister of Finance, clearly. I think the entire country could get along without Jim Flaherty.

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How much is that cabinet in the window? (VI)

  1. Brison: zing!

    The point being, though, that the Liberals can probably embarrass mightily the Conservatives by saying that not only will they accept the cuts in allowance, but they will forego anything but their base MP salary (the Whip and the Leader of the Opposition, etc.) and say that the CPC really ought to do the same for their ministers in these austere times, especially since they appointed the largest cabinet is decades.

  2. Jim Flaherty is suddenly the guardian of — what was Stockwell Day’s phrase again? — oh, yes, sweat-soaked loonies?

    What a total hypocrite, he of the $90,000 speech.

  3. Is it just me or is this whole “let pretend there’s no deficit/lets pretend to be stalwart deficit fighters all while hoping no one notices that Flaherty has been the highest spending finance minister” thing feel rather farcical?

  4. Will the gov’t MPs kindly help rake up all these 10-percenters clogging up my evetroughs? Or maybe Flaherty will insist on less sugar in the focus group’s lemonade.
    Perhaps the belt tightening will include 25% less oil in James Moore’s hair?
    Personally, until he admits that so-called ministers Ambrose, Oda, O’Connor, Vernier and Paradis are just expensive window dressing and not really vital to this top-down, narcissistic oligarchy, I doubt there will be anything but a token move, except some kind of direct kick at the opposition parties.

  5. I’m all in favour of Parliamentarians showing restraint, but when did it fall upon the Finance Minister and PMO spokespeople to determine how Parliament’s budget should be allocated? Isn’t the reverse supposed to be true?

  6. Parliamentary restraints? Are we talking leg irons?

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