Sunday, December 31, 2006

Following-up previous posts

*The other day I posted on turncoat minister David Emerson’s $10,000+ flight to Geneva for a World Trade Organization conference, and pondered how on earth he could spend that much on air fare.

I priced out seats in economy (not that his Honour would sully himself in coach) and executive, all of which cost substantially less than what Emerson racked-up. A commenter pointed-out though that I had neglected to price first class fares, which are apparently a step above executive class. I’ve never flown in business, so I can’t imagine what wonders await in First Class.

It’s a class that neither Air Canada or Swiss Air offer, so he didn’t fly with them, but first class is offered by British Airways. And, when priced, a Canada to Geneva via London flight in first class comes to just over $10,000 round trip, more that double the $4000 it would cost to fly business on Air Canada. Maybe the complimentary wine is a better vintage and the beer selection includes imports?

So, that’s a mystery solved. But still, I have to ask: how in the hell can anyone justify a public servant spending over $10,000 of taxpayer dollars for one roundtrip? I mean, you could buy a good used car for that! I’m fine with ministers flying executive, but over $10k for first class! It’s disgusting.

I can’t wait to hear the justifications from my Conservative friends. I suspect it will involve “you did it too” and the use of the word “Liberanos”. If it’s wrong it’s wrong guys, period. Spending nearly a third of my annual salary to fly a minister to Switzerland? I don’t think so.

*Yesterday I mentioned I found it odd that Canada’s New Government(TM) had yet to issue a statement on the execution of Saddam Hussein. As far as I can tell they still haven’t, although there has been some unofficial comment from Foreign Affairs apparently. A commenter points the way to an interesting piece that offers some insights and illumination. The international treaty/death penalty angle is particularly interesting. It’s not like they didn’t know this was coming though, they’ve had plenty of time to formulate an opinion.

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Anonymous said...

Stephen Harper said: "Canada appears content to become a second-tier socialistic country, boasting ever more loudly about its economy and social services to mask its second-rate status."
This year we saw Harper sweating and strutting across the world stage, boasting Canada's superpower status in our energy sector, cozying up to GW Bush, snubbing the Chinese, begging ineffectually for help with his warmongering and generally trying to make a silk purse out of the pig's ear that is his new government. Yet his new government cannot formulate a simple Canadian response to a international event like the killing of Saddam Hussein. What is he afraid of saying?
He even denies his so-called countrymen and women a proper announcement on the Government of Canada's website, which he allowed his partisan hacks to hijack into an image of his party's site. What is he afraid Canadians will hear?
It is not Canada who is second-rate, it is Stephen Harper.

Anonymous said...

"Spending nearly a third of my annual salary to fly a minister to Switzerland? I don’t think so."

That's a ComputerWorld problem - you should ask them for a raise.

Swiss Air is defunct. Air Canada has first class on their intercontinental flights. It is called Executive First Class (see, and prices vary depending on the seats (e.g. the lie-flat seats are more expensive). They have a special now to London for only $3000 round trip which even you can afford (of course, regular coach to London is $400 round trip).

I don't have a problem with Lib$ano or Conservative Ministers travelling first class on overseas trips especially if they have meetings early in the morning, and they are taking the red-eye from Toronto/Montreal/Vancouver.

Anonymous said...

C'mon folks, Harper's waiting for instructions from the White House.

Height Impaired said...

$10,000 does seem quite a bit insane for a single person , I just did a quick search on the Lufthansa site where first class would be $7800. I think you might be looking at this wrong, maybe he brought along 1 or 2 aides with him?

Anonymous said...

Happy New Year! I was wondering what you thought of this article by Ezra Levant on Stephane Dion. Interesting stuff. Did you know Dion voted against same-sex marriage in 1999? Me neither! Anyway, I know you are a good man and loathe echo chamber style blogging, so you won't mind if I post an excerpt or two in the interest of presenting a fair and honest picture of Stephane Dion, eh?

"Take gay marriage.

In 1999, Dion voted against gay marriage. Then, in his first week as Liberal leader, he called gay marriage a "fundamental right" -- conveniently forgetting how he himself voted.

Then, when several Liberal MPs told him they were going to vote against gay marriage, he changed his view yet again. It was no longer a "fundamental right", but rather a "matter of tactic.

It's not so fundamental," he said. So he'll say whatever it takes to get him through a political tight spot.
There are respectable reasons to be for or against gay marriage. Taking sides is what leadership is about. But Dion took both sides, meaning that neither side can trust him."

A BCer in Toronto said...

As I said I have no problem with Ministers flying business class. But spending over $10k for first class? I'm sorry, but that's just ridiculous. Maybe that would be a fine when Emerson was running Canfor, but it's not an acceptable use of taxpayer dollars.

wondering what you thought of this article by Ezra Levant...

Oh boy, more from the self-confessed Stockaholic? There's nothing new or interesting in Ezra's piece we haven't heard before.

Long story short, people evolve. I'm reading a biography of Steve Harper at the moment. Man, has he evolved from his Reform Party days. More on that later though.

Sheena said...

Air New Zealand first class gets you lamb cooked to order and Dom Perignon.

Justin Tetreault said...

Did you say evolve? People in the Conservative Party, don't believe in evolution.