Wednesday, June 08, 2005

SK: What are these brochures all about?

As we speak every single Saskatchewan household is receiving a full-colour brochure with the smiling face of Crown Investments Corporations (AKA the mother crown) Minister and Deputy Premier Pat Atkinson.

The stated purpose of the brochure is to tell us what a great job the government is doing in managing our "portfolio" of taxpayer-owned businesses. The pamphlet also tells us that our utility package came in one dollar cheaper than Manitoba's, giving us the cheapest utility prices in Canada (a 2003 NDP campaign promise). Of course, they achieved this by rebating back on our phone and power bills. The cost of that service probably eliminated the savings realized. And there's the costs of printing and mailing hundreds of thousands brochures.

Of course, they couldn't resist putting in a plug for government ownership of pretty well everything...

"Public ownership of our Crown corporations allows for the expenditures
that are important to Saskatchewan citizens while providing safe, reliable, high
quality services at the lowest rate in the country."

Do the "important expenditures" Atkinson refers to include the useless brochure I am currently reading?

(For our readers across Canada, you should know that Saskatchewan taxpayers own the only bus company in the province. We actually have a minister of buses.)

Countless thousands of taxpayer dollars for arguably partisan advertising becomes tomorrow's bird cage liners.

Update: I'm told that last year's brochure cost $75,000


Shaky said...

Many of the Taxpayer fans are located in rural areas that benefit from the bus service that you want so dearly to privatize. Typical.

David MacLean said...

Hey Shaky, I know you are from Saskatchewan, at least I suspect you are. But you should understand that just because the government doesn't provide bus servive, nobody else would. Check out every other province and see for yourself.

WhoisJG said...

My business is one of many that have to compete with the government (SaskTel) on a regular basis. SaskTel regularly uses political pressure and their government regulated monopoly to get contracts. They have even gone so far as to have our contracts cancelled by offering similar systems to our customers for free, after the customer chose us over them. These "free" systems have to be paid for by the taxpayer. I do not think that many people realize how the government’s actions through SaskTel choke the life out off the province. As an instrument of government policy, they are eliminating choice and restricting freedom, which is exactly as Lorne Calvert would have it.

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