Wednesday, August 3, 2011

August 3: a mixed bag.

 It was inevitable. Needing to discredit  Monday's protest against shale gas, the T&T sought out its usual apologist for big business, Professor Donald Savoie. "Protests might kill industry, says prof".
 The prof says that there could be big money in shale gas.
Wisely, he says not a word about the invironmental and health risks. After all, he knows nothing about those. In effect, he really says, well, it might poison water and land and people. But, gee, there could be big money in this. So let's talk more aboout that part.

On p. A3 is an announcement that professor Savoie has been awarded the Order of New Brunswick by the Alward government Yes, they look after their own.

And, once again, the T&T has refused to admit there could possible be health risks, refused to ask why such drilling is forbidden in France and under a moratorium in Quebec, refusto to ask why American insurance companies are refusing to offer property insurance for land anywhere close to the drilling, refused to give any information at all.

Despite what professor Savoie claims, there has been no debate about the risks of shale gas. The government and Brunswick Meida have refused to permit anysuch debate, and refused to release the information we need for a debate. Professor Savoie did not lie in his statement. But he skated on very thin ice, ideed. I'm sure he knew what the game was, and what part he was playing.

If the T&T watned to clarify the issue, why didn't it interview an authority on the issue - perhaps an academic authority on shale gas drilling? Why ask a professor who knows nothing about it?

The T&T picked Savoie, one must assume, because they know he would be a safe one - and they then printed a story to change the subject and further deaden the debate. That's how newspapers lie without actually lying.

Ono the editorial page, you have to read Alec Bruce's column for yourself. It is superb in both analysis and writing.

I enjoy seeing Norbert Cunniham now that  he always writes under his own name. But he needs to read more widely in economics. The world is not in an economic crisis because the poor were demanding too many services. It's not "the people" who caused the cricis. The tipping point came when the low interest morgage scam collapsed, and when US taxpayers had to plunge even deeper into debt and even into poverty to pay to the billionaires who caused the crisis - and who promptly used a nundred and thirty0billion of that they got  to give each other bonusses. (And who now insist they must not be asked to pay higher taxes - though their real taxes are extremely low.)

The slide had actually begun even earlier with costly wars which certainly were not a service to the poor. The US leads the world by far in military spending - much of it going to no-bid contracts and/or to currupt friends of a corrupt government.

The greed of the very rich in the US has given it the biggest wage gap in the industrial world, and created the masses of poor who are now blamed for the recession.

The same thing is going on in Canada - and even in New Brunswick. And Alward has real power???
Norbert has to be kidding. Alward is a gofer, or, more kindly, an obedientdog - to slow to learn tricks, but capable of bringing in the morning paper. Anything he gets done is what he's told to get done.

It wasn't services that  caused the crisis. It's corruption, greed and arrogance. And it's not the poor who are corrupt, greedy and arrogant. They're just the ones who pay the price for it.

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