Saturday, May 19, 2012

The Petro-Politburo Strikes Again

This time the malevolent hand of Steve Harper is obvious.

The entire Department of Fisheries and Oceans contaminants programme is being axed effective April Fool's Day.   In B.C. that means the entire staff of nine marine scientists and support staff are being canned.   Across Canada, this is the firing of almost all federal employees responsible for monitoring ocean pollution.

The entire pollution file for the government of Canada, and marine environment in Canada’s three oceans, will be overseen by five junior biologists scattered across the country — one of which will be stationed in B.C.,” said environmental toxicologist Peter Ross., a expert on marine mammals, notably killer whales.

“I cannot think of another industrialized nation that has completely excised marine pollution from its radar,” Ross said. Hired as a research scientist at Fisheries and Oceans Canada in 1999, Ross was one of the nine employees who received a letter Thursday informing him his position will be “affected as your services may no longer be required due to a lack of work or discontinuance of a function.”

Any doubt that this was a targeted hit was dispelled, totally unintentionally, by a DFO spokesperson trying to polish this turd.

Between the Department of Fisheries and Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard, we have found $79.3 million of savings for Canadians primarily by adjusting our internal operations and administration,” said Melanie Carkner, a spokesperson for the Department of Fisheries and Oceans, in an e-mail, Friday.

“To put the impact on employees in perspective, we will be removing about 400 positions from DFO’s 11,000-strong workforce. This works out to less than 2 per cent a year over three years.”

Okay Melanie, DFO needs to trim a paltry 2% of its workforce over the next two years, we get that.  And it starts by immediately axing the entire contaminants monitoring programme?    Sorry sweetie, that's a targeted hit and you made that obvious.


kootcoot said...

"Across Canada, this is the firing of almost all federal employees responsible for monitoring ocean pollution.

With before long over a thousand tankers annually in and out of Burrard Inlet and Kitimat, who would think any polluting might happen......these people are criminally insane!

The Mound of Sound said...

Sorry Koot but I can't give them the benefit of the insanity plea. This is criminal, no question, but there's no insanity behind it.

Anonymous said...

What is it that Harper knows that the rest of the country doesn't?

The Mound of Sound said...

@ Anonymous. Harper knows that information is power and he knows how to ruthlessly suppress it for his own, ideological benefit.

The Phantom said...

Thanks for the heads-up This is what I voted for. Less government, lower taxes. Awesome!

Next up, pipeline to BC baby!

By the way, don't you think that 11,000 "workers" at the Department of Fisheries seems somewhat... excessive? No, of course you don't. But I do. Yay! Faster please!

Scott Tribe said...

It's pretty sad that Conservatives like Phantom have descended to the point of cheering that we've become an environmental pariah-state - and that the Consertives are doing everything to show that they dont care what happens to the environment.

Brian Mulroney is almost looking good now.

The Mound of Sound said...

Scott, we make a serious mistake when we cast characters like Phantom as "conservative." They're far past anything that could be considered conservative in comparison to real conservatives of the past - Edmund Burke, Abe Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt.

Conservatism has always had a core philosophy of conservation, of leaving one's world or society better off than a person received it. That value obviously holds no importance to Phantom or those of his ilk. Even Mulroney, for all his many other flaws, was strong on environmentalism.

I would place Phantom on what I consider the far-right, well past what any true Conservative would consider decent.

kootcoot said...

MOS, I get your point, it crossed my mind as soon as I hit submit, I REALLY wasn't trying to give 'em an out. Mind you as long as they are locked up I could care less if it is an asylum or one of Stevie's flashy new gaols.

The Phantom said...

Scott and Mound, your comments are everything I've come to expect from your side of the political spectrum. For people that continually bash guys like me for intolerance, you seem to have remarkably little space for dissenting opinions.

By the way, the term "Far Right" implies someone who favors extremely strict government control of -everything-, with lots of people going to jail, concentration of power in just a few leaders, etc. Nazi Germany being the iconic model.

I know you guys missed this, but I'll repeat it just to make the point. I am cheering because Harper -cut- government. He reduced it. Made it less. Smaller. Just to be crystal clear, you're calling me a name which is not only a smear, its the exact opposite of what I am.

Just like you always do. I'm good with it, just thought I'd expand upon the absurdity a little.

Environmental protection is not necessarily improved by hiring more -government- workers. We need look no farther than our very own Ontario, in which Dalton McGuinty was forced to -suspend- environmental regulations so he could build his windmills. Because it would be completely impossible to do otherwise.

I don't recall any hue and cry from you guys when he did that, or when he started having the cops go 'round for a "friendly chat" with all the people who showed up to protest those windmills in Flyover Country. Places you never heard of, like Port Dover, Darlington, Simcoe etc. Lots of farmers and soccer moms out here got a visit from the OPP and a stern telling off for showing up with a "Stop the wind turbines" sign.

Farces like this happen in Oceans and Fisheries every week, reducing the head count is never going to be a bad thing.

But don't worry, its not just the environment that's under attack. I understand that seat polishers in every department (including Defense!) are putting down their cans of Pledge and breaking out their resumes. Probably the first real work any of them have done in years.

Remember boys, voting for -less- government is the -opposite- of totalitarian.

Anonymous said...

There are the blind, that will not see.

Scientists have found acid in the ocean, right up to the shores of BC. They were shocked, they thought the acid way out in the deeps. The acid will eat the shells off the crustaceans. The coral is bleaching white, with very little regrowth. The seas are on an overdose of Carbon Dioxide. If the oceans die, we die. If we don't get rid of fossil fuels, the planet will get rid of us.

Harper has threatened any charity, saying one word against the tar sands, will find their budgets slashed to the bare bones.

In Durban, at the meeting of Nations regarding global warning, you damned right there is a big worry concerning global warming. Of course, Harper went to the meeting, to bully other country's into accepting the dirty oil. Europe was fed up with Harper, for giving them false statements, on the toxicity of the dirty oil. Harper's hissy fits, when he doesn't get his own way, only earns him contempt, by the other Nations.

Harper is full of, dirty tactics, dirty politics. Just ask, Gordon Campbell, the Christy Clark BC Liberals and Boessenkool.

The Mound of Sound said...

Look, Phantom, if you don't want people calling you a dumbass, stop acting like a dumbass.

Your childish position is that government cuts are inherently good. That's beyond puerile, it's moronic. What if you fired all the F-18 pilots but kept all the fuel techs? You would be left with a useless but still very large organization. But, according to your simplistic mind, that would be fine.

Being an Ontarian you have no damned idea of the role those contaminant monitors play in our coastal ecology and our fishery. That degree of ignorance comes through loud and clear in your inane remarks. I guess what I'm trying to say is that if you don't understand what you're talking about then find another forum where your astonishing lack of insight or anything worthwhile saying is welcome.

The Phantom said...

Dear Mound, you are extremely hostile and very difficult to talk to. Have you considered cutting back on the caffeine?

Let me again restate my position, in even smaller words.

I do not object to environmental monitoring, as I said at the outset. Its just that government is the most corrupt, most expensive, least effective way to do it that you could possibly come up with.

Any cuts to the monstrosity that currently consumes billions to NOT monitor the ocean properly are therefore welcome. Because the ever more immanent alternative is to become Greece.

If there is to be honest, accurate, timely monitoring of the BC and Atlantic coast it would best be done by charities. Otherwise you get the cops-in-the-donut-shop kind of service we have come to expect from government employees everywhere. Healthcare being the most glaring example.

To illustrate, I find that most people don't understand the importance of military history. Rather than lobby the government to do it badly at vast expense, I contribute to charities that do it properly.

Likewise, if you're so desperate to have this important monitoring work done that I don't understand, perhaps you should get busy and form a charity to DO it.

And perhaps if you get a tax cut, you'll have more bread to spend on what you consider important won't you? And the objections of "puerile, moronic" people like The Phantom who just don't get it won't mater at all will they?

I'm not suggesting we have -no- government, because that would be silly. I'm suggesting we have -less- government. Like maybe a tenth of what we have now. Because that would be affordable, and what we have isn't.

Now if the above was too mean spirited or hard case or whatever, let me instead pose a question for you to ponder:
How much environmental monitoring is going on in Greece right now, d'you think?

The Mound of Sound said...

"government is the most corrupt, most expensive, least effective>" Got anything at all to prove that or, as usual, are you just pulling nonsense out your backside?

You do realize that monitoring and enforcement are part of the same process, do you? Now do you want charities to have the enforcement powers we ordinarily entrust only to government? Governments can be held to account much more effectively than private organizations or is that too much for you to grasp?

Phantom, you really have a dismal grasp of reality. But it's clear there's no headway to be made with you. You earlier argued constituional questions while dismissing the legal fabric by saying the law is an ass. That sort of approach precludes all intelligent discussion. So, please, do us all a favour and just move on. Your narcissism is, or should be, a bit embarrasing.