Category: Nova Scotia Politics

Labour bears brunt of McNeil’s eulogized tough decisions

There are lots of topics packed into the 15-minute eulogy for Stephen McNeil’s government featured in the virtual Liberal leadership convention package posted on You Tube last weekend. The video includes accolades to universal pre-primary, tax cuts, organ donation legislation as well as immigration and export growth. But relations with unionized public employees, the centrepiece of McNeil’s government, is the main theme of the propaganda piece. Ironically, the issue is never spelled out. Instead, viewers are asked to decipher – with help from a couple of still shots and superimposed text – the meaning behind a lot of talk...

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Nova Scotia democracy was in retreat even before McNeil

Cancelling the fall session of the Nova Scotia legislature put an exclamation point on Stephen McNeil’s disregard for democracy. The act was far from a one off, something that could be excused by the need to focus government on the pandemic. It was instead a continuation of an autocratic approach that has marked McNeil’s seven years as Premier. The government he led ran roughshod over public sector workers, steamrolled over district health authorities, wiped out elected school boards and gave the back of the hand to opposition politicians and the media before the grand finale, practically locking-down settler British...

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Calling out errant federal Conservatives could keep Houston busy

Tim Houston, leader of a team that looks like what used to be called Red Tories, has stepped up to take on a tough task – putting daylight between his Progressive Conservative (PC) gang and the Conservative Party of Canada (CPC). Earlier this week, the CBC reported on some of the contents of Houston’s email newsletter reprimanding federal MP Derek Sloan for his sponsorship in the House of Commons of an anti-vaxxer petition. The petition questions the approval process for COVID-19, asserting that “bypassing proper safety protocols means COVID-19 vaccination is effectively human experimentation.” Houston warned Nova Scotia’s PCs...

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NS government has the capacity and the obligation to ‘Build Back Better’

This week, in the midst of responding to an upsurge in COVID-19 infections and a housing crisis, the Nova Scotia government announced the launch of public pre-budget consultations. Unlike the previous NDP government and the feds, the McNeil Liberals have approached these consultations in recent years as pro-forma, ass-covering exercises. The process inaugurated this week looks like more of the same. According to the news release from the Finance Minister, Nova Scotians are “encouraged to submit their budget priorities by mail, email, on Twitter or by speaking with their MLA.” Whether anyone in government will pay attention to the...

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McNeil’s actions evoke memories of prior Premier’s disdain for democracy

It’s important to keep things in perspective. At the end of another week of Trump refusing to acknowledge he has lost the Presidency of the most powerful country in the world, Stephen McNeil’s latest dismissal of democracy in little old Nova Scotia pales by comparison. Nevertheless, the plan by McNeil and his Liberal enablers to dispense with a fall sitting of the legislature for the first time in many years was rightly condemned by the opposition. The out-going Premier’s attempted justifications – he’s too busy warding off the pandemic, he’s accountable through his occasional Qs and As with reporters...

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Liberal leadership race: a weak field carrying heavy baggage

With apologies to anyone opposed to the sport of horse racing, I am going to apply a racetrack analogy to the Nova Scotia Liberal leadership contest that began officially last Friday. On most days at the track there are two classes of event – stakes races for big purses involving quality mounts and claiming races for the majority of horses who rarely see the winner’s circle. The Liberal leadership race is a mash up of the two. The stakes are high – the Premier’s office – but the entries are strictly claimers. In alphabetical order we have Randy Delorey,...

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Richard Starr, The man behind the Point

About Richard

RICHARD STARR has had careers as a journalist, public servant, broadcaster, political staffer and freelance policy adviser. He is author of numerous newspaper and magazine articles, a former radio and TV producer and weekly newspaper editor, and the author of three non-fiction books. Starr has lived in Dartmouth for more than 30 years.

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