The F-35 Boondoggle

I know we’ve been over this ground before, but remind me again… why does Canada even need this heinously expensive new class of fighter jet at all? What possible military threat are we defending ourselves from? Seriously. What is the point?

Aside from the absurdity of ploughing something like $30 billion into a high-tech gizmo that serves no useful purpose whatsoever (it’s worth noting that Lockheed Martin’s last iteration of this plane, the F-22 “stealth raptor” fighter, has never actually been deployed in combat), there is the matter of the Harper government having egregiously misled Canadians about the cost of the program during the last election and then repeatedly lying to parliament subsequent to that. For instance, according to Harper and his ministers last year, there was a contract in place that would prevent cost overruns, but now they claim there is no contract. So which is it?

Bob Rae has called on Harper to resign over the issue, but, of course, nobody seriously imagines that’s going to happen. I mean, we’re only talking about a complete lack of government oversight involving a measly $10 billion discrepancy in accounts… it’s certainly nothing anywhere nearly as serious as the “AdScam” fiasco where possibly $100 million of taxpayer money was at stake! In that case, it was entirely justified that every “conservative” worth his or her salt should howl with OUTRAGE! like a gut-shot dog every day for years and years and years…

Harper’s F-35 Joint Strike Farce

Here’s a brand new video from the LPC regarding the Harper government’s constantly shifting position with respect to the purchase of an unconfirmed number of F-35 stealth fighter jets that could cost billions more than was initially planned for.

You may recall that during the election the Conservatives claimed they had a contract in place to purchase the new planes – one that would protect taxpayers’ from spiralling costs. Eventually, however, that turned out not to be true (surprise!). Now as things stand, according to associate defence minister Julian Fantino, “The . . . decision has not been made as to whether or not we are actually going to purchase, buy, acquire the F-35,”

Apart from the subject at hand, the nature of the video itself is worth noting. I believe this marks a significant departure for the Liberals – it’s the first full-on, issue-specific attack that I can recall being posted on YouTube. Until now they’ve mostly just uploaded raw clips of testy exchanges in Question Period or lengthy speeches – fairly unremarkable stuff, to be honest. By contrast, this is an engaging, aggressively direct piece that demonstrates some actual effort in terms of production. Good job! Let’s see more of these in the future.

The Red Door

Within the confines of a 30 second advert, this is quite brilliant for its stark simplicity.

Focusing attention on the $30 billion F-35 boondoggle and leveraging that as a binary option to the Liberals’ “plan to support caregivers, to improve the public pension system and to help you save on energy costs” is a smart political move.