Monday, April 9, 2012

A Question For Andrew Coyne....

or any other journalist or opposition member. Can you please give me some examples of previous government announcements of procurements of military equipment where the government tabled the amount including salaries, fuel costs, etc.?

I'm not saying it hasn't happened, but hours of searching the internet has produced a big fat zero. For example, the Chretien government bought submarines from Britain in 1998 at a cost of $750 million, but since then National Defence has pumped over $1 billion into repairing and converting them to Canadian use. I can find news reports of Liberals stating the $750 million cost, but none mentioning the $1 billion in repair and maintenance included at the time of purchase. And that $1.75 billion includes no mention of salaries, fuel costs, etc.

Another example is the gun registry. Liberals told Canadians the cost would be $119 million, but would be reduced to $2 million through registration fees. The actual cost is in excess of $1 billion. And by the way, The RCMP reported the cost of the registry at roughly $87 million a year, not the $4 million Liberals such as Mark Holland liked to recite in the full knowledge that was wrong. So using the same accounting you demand for the F-35 procurement, it can be said that over 20 years the cost of the LGR would be in excess of another billion. Can you please show me anywhere the Chretien government included the extra billions in cost?

Going back even further to the Mulroney government, in 1991 Mulroney announced the purchase of 50 helicopters for $5.8 billion dollars. Now given the long life expectancy of helicopters, which can exceed 30 years, I find it hard to fathom the fact that the $5.8 billion number included salaries, fuel costs, etc., for the next 30 years.

Maybe I'm wrong with all this. Enlighten me.

By the way, by the mid-'90s, the Sea King helicopters had become so worn out that it cost 30 hours labor for every hour of air time. Perhaps I missed it. Can you show me where the Liberal government of the day told Canadians what the cost of flying those copters was?


Unknown said...

Its Andrew Coyne.

Ted Betts said...

The problem for Harper - and with your question - is that he/McKay were specifically and directly asked about the whole life costs of the planes and they responded with the false number. Not only that, but when during the election opposition members and the Public Budget Officer said the whole life cost of the planes was at least $25B, the Conservatives attacked them as spewing nonsense and attempting to undermine the troops.

No, there can be no question that The Harper Government (TM) once again lied to Parliament.

bubba brown said...

Hi Tedd,is that you Bob?

paulsstuff said...

Sorry Ted, but like my post references, show one other example where a previous government included things like salaries and fuel into procurement costs. Mulroney was asked about the long term costs of the EH-100 contract, and I don't remember anyone bringing up salaries and fuel.

Liberals were asked about the costs of the LGR, and falsified the numbers by billions. In fact Ted just the last election Liberals were stating the LGR only cost $4 million per year to operate, when the report they took the number from actually stated the cost at $87 million. They also repeatedly stated the $4 million number in the house, a deliberate attempt at misleading both Parliament and Canadians.

Chretien never mentioned salaries and fuel costs when cancelling the EH-100 helicopter contract at a cost of $500 million. The result of that partisan political decision has now ballooned the cost by another $11 billion dollars.

Come to think of it, he never really gave the right cost for those crappy submarines, at first telling Canadians they cost $1 and the trading of some training, then admitted it was actually $750 million when caught. And that billion dollar number always repeated now concerning the subs doesn't include fuel and salaries either.

I could also mention that the majority of the millions spent so far on the F-35 purchase was done under the Liberals, but why kick a guy when he's down.

Ted Betts said...

Wow. It's amazing how quickly a government in power loses touch with the governed.

Canadians don't give a rats ass about what some government two or three decades ago did with our money. We kicked them out. Or don't you remember that little fact? We kicked them out for precisely the attitude you are displaying, this easy going "we're your political superiors", "a billion here, a billion there, what's the difference", "we'll tell you what we think you need to know, not what you want to know" arrogance.

You guys have to stop trying to whine about the past. You've been in government for almost 10 years.

It is very simple: the government was specifically asked for the full lifetime cost of the planes. The government lied to Parliament in response. Period.

It's not so difficult for the Auditor General to understand that. It's not so difficult for the voters to get that. So I'm kinda baffled at how hard it is for The Harper Government (TM) to get that.

The Conservatives are the government. When are they going to start acting like it and take some responsibility for their own government and actions.

paulsstuff said...

"Canadians don't give a rats ass about what some government two or three decades ago did with our money"

And yet CBC continues to spend taxpayer dollars on The Fifth Estate Schreiber-Mulroney reruns.

The fact is were the government continue to fly the CF-18 jets, that $10 billion would still be spent. The actual new cost to the taxpayer would be $15 spread over a number of years.

Again, show me an example of any type of procurement announced by a government, I'll even accept provincial and municipal, where things like salaries and fuel were included in the estimate.

cantuc said...

Aiken had to use nasa for an example and Coynes busy having a breakdown on twitter. He even screamed with the caps lock on at O'Malley for straying from her role not repeating his talking points. Seems it's only Andrew Coyne that's allowed talking points. His paper must not be doing so good . Lately he's all spam , all day long.

Ted Betts said...

Don't need to Paul because that's not the point. You guys don't get it. You are so used to spin and Harpers BS you don't even see the shot they standing in.

They were asked a specific and direct question: what was the full life cycle cost of the planes. In Parliament. They lied. In Parliament. Period.

paulsstuff said...

The thing you never mention Ted is that the members of all parties vote on the motions to pay for those salaries and fuel on a yearly basis.

So to say the government misled them on the cost shows incompetence on the opposition side, not the government.

Life cycle costs include the cost of the planes at purchase, as well as maintenance, upgrades and replacement. To say that the DND, PBO, or AG can give a credible projection on the cost of fuel, salaries, parts, etc. 30 years into the future is unbelievable.

I have no reason to question the credibility of the AG. In fact his numbers were comparable to the governments, with the caveat that his numbers icluded fuel and salaries.

The PBO on the other hand is more partisan than most politicians. He issued a damning report stating OAS costs were not sustainable, and a month later when the government repeated that message did a 180 and stated they were.

Ted Betts said...

It's not incompetence I'm accusing them of, Paul. Though there is plenty of that here too according to the AG. No, it's deceit. The classic Harper culture of deceit.

They were asked a question and deliberately gave an answer knowing it was not true. A lie to Parliament.

Everything else is just spin, smoke and mirrors.

And you know it. Which is why you would rather talk about stuff from 30 years ago than address the real issue.

Anonymous said...

So using the AG's costing methodology, the CBC costs Canadians $65 Billion dollars.

We shouldnre cost Aboriginal Affairsnas well . . . Rough calc says it costs Canadians over $1 TRILLION.