Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Harper pays peanuts for personal use of government jets

No need for my usual patented brand of Liberal spin with this story off the CP ticker, just read it for yourself and weep...

Harper pays peanuts for personal use of government jets
BRUCE CHEADLE

OTTAWA (CP) - Prime Minister Stephen Harper and his Conservatives are paying just a small fraction of the cost of partisan and personal junkets aboard the military's fleet of Challenger executive jets.

And documents show that the Prime Ministers' Office changed the formula for calculating flight costs after Harper's first partisan journey - a move that slashed subsequent Conservative party repayments.

Neither the original formula nor the reduced charges came anywhere close to what Harper himself in Opposition had called "$11,000 per hour Challenger jet flights" by the previous Liberal government.
(more)


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9 comments:

Steve V said...

Jeff

I hope you're not suggesting that Harper says one thing and then does another, because that is just outrageous.

A BCer in Toronto said...

Of course not Steve, that would make me some kind of extremist...

Scott Tribe said...

You'll also be accused of being with the terrorists.

janfromthebruce said...

But aren't you with the terrorists, just like Taliban Jack? You are either with us or against us, or some rendition of that parle!

player_hater said...

The Ontario P.C. fundraiser was my favorite. Why not? Harper has two tier Clement in Health, budget deficit houdini in finance, Flaherty, and government waste houdini Baird in Treasury Board (His cover up of Hydro One contracts before the 2003 provincial election was the stuff of legends, then managing to shield the public from Bev Oda's stretch limo motorcade into the Junos, then shuffled to Environment so he wouldn't have to answer for it in question period). Harpocrits gotta love'em. Didn't Paul Martin get accused of Challenger abuse when he wanted to be with his family for Christmas.

burlivespipe said...

Nope, I'm certain Jeff's with the oil-depleted pine beatle huggers. His neighbours, the Terrorists, sold that condo and moved to Florida. They do send a postcard once in a while...


www.canadianrosebud.blogspot.com

Dauphin said...

The Liberals didn't reimburse the DND for these flights to any degree when they were in power. The fact that the Conservatives are paying something demonstrates an improvement. Is this not obvious??

No Liberal is in a position to criticize the government's use of challenger jets.

Zorpheous said...

Dauphin said...

The Liberals didn't reimburse the DND for these flights to any degree when they were in power. The fact that the Conservatives are paying something demonstrates an improvement. Is this not obvious??

No Liberal is in a position to criticize the government's use of challenger jets.

******************

Oh you just have to love this level of moral and ethical relativism. Dauphin logic can be summed up like this, just as long as the CPC steals less than the Liberals, just as long as the CPC rips of the Canadian tax payer less than the Liberals, even though it is wrong, we can't question them on it because the Liberals were worse.

mecheng said...

Both the Liberals and the Conservatives act pretty stupid about this when in opposition. I can see the NDP or BQ attacking this, they will never get to use the jet, so can bitch about it all they want. Why the H-E-double-hockey-sticks doesn't someone write up some acceptable use guidelines? As I posted on another blog:

I think that the PM should be able to use the jet for whatever he wants to, whether government related, for partisan purposes, or for personal reasons.

I think that if there are ministers travelling with the PM, no reimbursement by anyone should be required.

If the PM is not on the plane, reimbursement should occur, whether or not ministers are using it for government business. The reimbursement rate should be set at something like the passenger capacity times equivalent business class fare times two. This rate would encourage ministers to only use the jet when it is filled up, and would encourage them to fly commercial airlines whenever possible. I think it's an 8 seat jet, so if average business class ticket from A to B would have cost $1000, reimbursement should be 8x1000x2=$16,000. Reimbursment should come from the ministers operating budget for government related business, or the party if trip is for partisan purposes.

Ministers should not be using the jet for personal purposes like vacations. (Not saying anyone has done that)

Taking it out of ministers budget would encourage responsible use. Obviously, you would probably want to increase each ministers budget to allow for an adequate number of uses and a few emergency uses per year. (I would expect that Foreign Affairs might use it a little more than Finance? Who knows?)

A parliamentary committee should draft guidelines for usage and reimbursement. Determining the "business class rate" would be done by whoever actually takes care of booking the jet, not by the parties using it.

The most important point, I would think, is that if the PM (Liberal or Conservative) is on the jet, no reimbursement is necessary regardless of what it is being used for.