Prime Minister Fires Instead of Retires

Edmonton - Monday, May 27, 2002 - by: Ron Thornton


A few thousand dollars for an ex-girlfriend and an $800 sleepover has managed to accomplish what blown billions could not; get one cabinet minister fired and another demoted. Public


  Works Minister Don Boudria spent a weekend at a luxury chalet belonging to an ad agency his department had spent millions with. He claims the $800 rent for the digs was paid for, even though the cheque wasn't cashed until after the fertilizer hit the fan, and disclaims any conflict-of-interest as he drops a peg to become Government House Leader.


Not so fortunate was Defence Minister Art Eggleton, who thought so highly of an ex-lover he hired her to write on post-traumatic stress disorder and environmental illness. The lady in question claims


"I'm a woman, I'm young and I'm pretty and that's why we are being victimized."


Still, I'm not so sure that if Eggleton paid $36,500, for a fourteen page report on a subject already being documented, to an ugly, middle-aged, male ex-lover, the level of disgust would have been all that much less.




Even as Eggleton slips to the back benches, we must wonder why he and Boudria got sacrificed for their conduct while others have not. When one considers the legacy of questionable government conduct in the past from the Prime Minister on down, this is similar to putting out the campfire only after setting the forest ablaze. If only now the Prime Minister is trying to put out the flames, what else could be hidden behind the smoke that he might be trying to hide from prying eyes? Just maybe the best solution won't come with a firing, but with his retiring.


Ron Thornton