26 July 2006

Do they make this up as they go along?

Some weeks ago, Derek Greene, Chief Justice of the Trials Division of the Supreme Court was appointed by the Executive Council to conduct a review of parliamentary salaries and other budgets.

Appointed by cabinet.

So why is he now presenting his report to the Internal Economy Commission of the House of Assembly?

Strictly speaking, Greene's report has no more standing than one presented by the MoonMan since Greene was appointed by an extra-parliamentary body. Harvey Hodder could just ingore it if he wanted to; that is if he wasn't taking all his orders from the Premier's Office.

The Greene report was apparently never authorized by the IEC and it certainly wasn't established legally to conduct its review under s. 13 of the Internal Economy Commission Act.

That requires a resolution of the House of Assembly.

The House hasn't been called into session to deal with the scandal as a deliberate part of the cabinet's obvious efforts to maintain political control of what happens in response to the scandal.
A key part of that strategy effort has been avoiding a public inquiry to determine what happened.

No matter what it might appear, Chief Justice Greene simply doesn't have the mandate to find out what happened and he certainly lacks the legal powers to compel testimony from people.

That is unless there has been yet another order in council changing Greene's mandate.

The word strategy is struck out above since, on reflection, it appears the Williams administration doesn't have a strategy for dealing with this financial mess just as it lacks a strategy for most things it does "Strategy" implies a plan. It suggests thoughtful analysis and a consistent application of certain measures to achieve a defined goal.

What has been going on with the House of Assembly - more obviously with each passing - is more like someone ruling by whim of the moment.

Or, to use a local political comparison - we are back to the days of the Premier pulling decisions out of an available bodily orifice.

Can a health care "Future of the People's House" public town hall meeting forum be far behind?