Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Who's Wrong? Andrew Coyne or Myself?

Seems Andrew Coyne thinks I have been dishonest in criticizing his editorial on the Muskrat Falls loan guarantee by the federal government. He takes issue over at Joanne's BLOG to this comment I left on December 11th at 2:00pm.:

"Coyne lost any credibility by regurgitating Lizzy May’s talking points on the Muskrat Falls loan guarantee. By guaranteeing the loan, the federal government saves NFLD & Labrador roughly $1 billion a year on interest payments. Coyne agrees with May, money should be spent on green farces like solar panels, wind power, shiny ponies and unicorns. Pathetic.".

 Coyne's reply was complete denial: "I have never said or implied any such thing, ever."

 Now the reason I had this in my mind was Coyne's editorial followed comments made by May in the news media as well as Green Party WEBSITE. May stated her static talking point that rather than investing in hydro-electric the government should be looking at things like wind and solar power, already epic failures in Ontario and around the world. And with May's comments fresh in my mind, reading Coyne's editorial less than 24 hours later was an easy link to make. In particular this paragraph:

"Provinces do this all the time, of course, and it’s always a bad idea. It biases investment toward megaprojects, away from smaller scale ventures; towards hydro-electricity, and away from other power sources; towards energy-intensive industries, away from others – in each case, towards projects that would not have been the best choice on their merits, but only because of the subsidy.”

In my eyes, Coyne's position does in fact echo May's. His statement about "away from other power sources". Which power sources? Coal is no longer an option. Nuclear power has far too great a start-up cost and years of construction before being operational. So what options remain? I respect Coyne as a journalist and have for some time. But I think myself and others might be of the opinion the Ottawa Bubble might be overtaking rational thinking on Coyne's part. Lord knows this government deserves ridicule over it's communications strategies and abilities. But Coyne's columns are increasingly taking that anti-Harper tone that has me tuning out most political journalists.

 This posting is not meant to slag Andrew, but merely point out the basis for my original comment on Joanne's blog. Read the links and give me your opinion. If you feel Andrew was correct in his assertion that he hasn't implied or stated green energy was the way to go in Newfoundland than I will offer a heartfelt apology. And it also goes without saying that Andrew should accept the fact he did in fact echo May's talking points if that's what the majority of opinions show.

 Either way, you decide..


Blame Crash said...

You’re giving him way too much credit. After all, this is the character who when faced with the reality that Canadians were finally going to vote in a Conservative majority, went into full blown panic mode and started hyperventilating that “on May 2nd, I’m voting Liberal”. This is when voting Liberal meant you were voting for the coalition of Separatists, Socialists and Criminals.
Imagine that! He preferred them! That sentence of infamy speaks volumes.

Blame Crash said...

And to answer your question, you're right.

Jay Awram said...

Muskrat falls IS green energy. Hydroelectricity is the only viable renewable resource.
Coyne always sounds almost reasonable then leans whichever way away from the Conservatives. Too conservative, not conservative enough.

paulsstuff said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
paulsstuff said...

That's true Jay, but hydro-electric doesn't fit May's ideology, nor Coyne's apparently. Not only is it very low on ghg emissions, but it also produces little waste in the process.

OMMAG said...

You just fell prey to Coyne's habit of conflating ideas and creating a fuddle.

Basically he makes an assertion and tries to support it with an inaccurate reference or unrelated second assertion. He will go on drawing all sort of nonsensical conclusions without ever saying anything concrete. Then when he gets criticized falls back on the claim that his critics did not get it.

He can always claim that he never said what he said because in spite of the clear implications .... what he actually said was something quite different. But only in the literal interpretion of the individual claims that he has muddled together.

In short ... he is a fork tongue speaker and writer of nonsense.

Lloyd Snauwaert said...

Good catch...I read the same stuff and it hit me the same way.

OMMAG said...

Or just a really shitty writer....

Martin Clooney said...

Nice blog, I loved reading it.

Solar Panels in Ontario to the radio said...

Seconding Blame Crash on Coyne's Liberal endorsement during the last election.
Endorsing the Liberals when the most logical result would have been a tenuous coalition government dedicated to paying off the interests of it's constituent parts was a head scratcher.

The most galling thing was hanging that argument on the sense there was a deteriorating climate of parliamentary civility for which the Conservatives were somehow completely responsible.
As if anyone outside of Ottawa cared whether or not members of parliament were polite to each other when they were considering Saint Layton's kitchen table issues at election time.

This latest bit over the loan guarantee creating a market distortion is another delightful misdirection.
The loan guarantee was an election promise that was exploited by the NDP to craft their big Quebec breakthrough.
A promise that is being honoured by the government.
That's all that matters.

If it concerned him so much then he should have written about it, then.
Maybe he did.
And if he did, I wonder if he also wrote a column to Quebeckers explaining that a loan guarantee is not a loan.

Andrew Coyne wrote himself off of my media reading list.
It doesn't seem like he's inclined to write himself back on.