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What is the point of bailing out failing companies?

Over the last few days we have seen a great example of why governments shouldn’t bail out struggling companies. GM is the latest example; Bombardier which repeatedly comes cap in hand looking for money is another.

Bailing out a failing company whether it has made foolish business decisions or produces products that people don’t want should not be the responsibility of any level of government. The same point could be argued for both the CBC and Canada Post.

This morning on CTV, Ian Lee of the Sprott School of Business made an excellent point. It is better to invest in the workers and in retraining them than to give money to companies. We have a shortage of high paying trades jobs in Canada- retrain workers and help those near retirement age to transition to their pension. It makes sense and would probably cost a lot less money than offering corporate welfare to failing businesses.

What is the point of pulling workers off the job right before Christmas because you don’t like a decision that has gone against you. CUPW is a prime example. They have been legislated back to work. The brilliant CUPW leadership then pulls an extra one-day strike. Bright move as that cut will come on the worker’s pay cheque roughly two weeks from now, just before Christmas. Will this extra day off help the workers?

We saw the same thing at GM where the workers walked out for the day as well.

Outside of union leaders believing their own rhetoric and trying to divert their members attention away from the failed efforts of the union leadership- what was accomplished? Besides a few seconds of TV coverage of angry union leaders grandstanding for the membership, all that was achieved in both cases was the loss of another days pay for zero impact or benefit for the workers.










It is about time that the Trudeau Liberals acted on the Canada Post issue. With hints that they might intervene, they are still not committed to solving the issue.

The longer they wait the bigger the political problem will be for them.

Politically the Liberals are in a no-win situation.

It’s nice to say let the bargaining process continue, but anyone who knows the history of the relationship between Canada Post and the union knows that this is a pipe dream or maybe it’s a pot dream in Trudeau’s Canada.

If the union can’t get Canada Post to agree to its terms, government intervention allows them to blame the Liberals for not getting the workers what they promised.

Canada Post on the other hand can also blame the Liberals for intervening and potentially costing the corporation money that they might have saved from a long strike or a lock out. Those lost wages add up quickly.

There is no doubt letting this issue continue will also cost the economy. Too big a hit is not something the government wants moving into an election year.

There is also one other group that is getting more and more concerned as we get closer to Christmas- all the parents and grandparents sending packages out that they have paid for and expect to arrive on time for Christmas Day. This group will remember the disappointed looks on little children’s faces when there is nothing under the tree for them.

The Liberals can’t win on this one- it is better for them to bite the bullet now and get it behind them going into 2019.


A Dumb Idea

Once again, we see Conservative staff being used as props or in today’s case more correctly as “disrupters” at a meeting.

This time it was at a meeting of the NATO Association where Liberal MPs banded together to remove a former Liberal, now Conservative MP, from the chair position.

Conservative staff proceeded to break out into song to disrupt the vote and proceedings. Eventually the security staff had to ask them to leave.

How stupid can the Conservatives be? Who thinks tactics like this up and who the hell thinks any of it will work? It is dumb, dumb, dumb.

Does anyone on the Conservative side think that the CPC in the last few years of the Harper government would not have acted in a similar manner to the Liberals to remove a Chairperson; if one of their members had bolted to the Liberal side.

It is politics, get over it.

By using their staff in such a manner, the staff became the story, not the removal of a very competent female Member of Parliament. Only partisans who drink their own Kool-Aid would think planning and then allowing this to happen was a bright idea.

The only good thing about this story is that outside of the Hill area, few Canadians will pay attention or give a damn about what happened.

Those that do pay attention will shake their head at how such childish behavior. This foolishness came from the party that claims to be ready to govern. Are they just not ready?

It is time to grow up and act like professionals if you want to win the trust and vote of Canadians.


Good Deal? Bad Deal?

A new agreement between the USA, Mexico and Canada has been reached. To their credit the Liberals managed to get it done. There is no point for anyone to be declaring it a better deal or worse one than the previous agreement.

Frankly it is far to early for anyone (including the opposition parties) to say if it is a good deal or a bad deal. Time will tell and probably not until after the election in 2019.

No one gets a big win in a negotiation session whether it’s on trade or any other item.

All parties have to win a bit and feel that they have made gains in some areas. To achieve that the other side has to give up a little. That is simply the way negotiations work. Ch19 was a big win for Canada and we gave a bit on dairy (not too many Canadians will complain about that).

There are other issues outside of the agreement to be resolved, but, going forward there is some goodwill now on both sides. What happens with these issues will help to determine if this is a good deal or not.

I don’t think anyone was surprised to see the usual knee jerk reaction from the Conservatives with Scheer saying this is a bad deal. But, there is NAFTA fatigue out there; the constant attempts by the media to play up the negotiations into some type of crisis have exhausted the public’s interest in this issue.

For nonpartisans who don’t live inside the Queensway, people just want this issue to go away now. Besides it won’t help the Conservatives to continue to support dairy supply management.


Goodbye Max

Well, as his nickname implies Mad Max has done it again and this time he has left the Conservative Party.

There is one thing that we can always count on in politics and it doesn’t matter if it is municipal, provincial or federal politics, and that is people’s egos.

There is always someone who is convinced that they are the next best thing in politics, if only the rest of the team would see it that way. Being full of your own importance isn’t that uncommon and it has ruined many a political career.

In the dog days of summer, when news is scarce, Bernier can attract attention. It will be a different game once the House returns and Bernier is just one more seat at the back of the room representing fewer voters than Elizabeth May.

Bernier is best remembered for his lost briefing book, but, I remember a poorly prepared minister scrambling to read his Question Period briefing book, just as the QP prep with the Prime Minister was to get under way and then stumbling over his answers when practice questions were directed his way. Not knowing your files is not the the stuff that Prime Ministers are made of and that was for one department not the whole government. I didn’t see prime ministerial material in him then and I don’t now.

Max can bask in the camera lights for now, but he will also have to deliver on a host of policy issues, raise funds, try to attract sitting MPs, find some good advisors, or change the ones he has now, and come up with enough followers to run candidates in at least Quebec, if not Canada.

I would wish Max good luck, but I will save that for Andrew Scheer and the Tory team when they take on Trudeau in 2019. Go Scheer Go!


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