|By Sydney White|
Ernie of the patent leather hair [Ontario premier Ernie Eves] announced from the poop deck on May 1 that "Ontario Hydro is now open to the Market" (de Sade). Unfortunately for us, Ernie's mental acuity may be in question. A debt of only $38 billion is the excuse to sell off Hydro One at a yard sale price of $5.5 billion.
Since then, the people have found out about Hydro CEO Eleanor Clithroe's six-million-dollar severance pay. They've found out that the board of Ontario Hydro had secret meetings so that their pay packages would remain the same, regardless of Hydro restructuring. And they've found out that Clithroe had a car allowance of $175,000! Her annual salary of $2.2 million should have covered all but a Lamborghini.
Now the Hydro board has been fired and/or resigned (citing government interference). The government knew all about the princely pay packages long ago. Ernie decided to disclose it now because he discovered (along with shoe polish as a follicle restorative) that he would appear kinder and gentler than Mikey [former Ontario premier Michael Harris] by throwing the public a few scraps of contention.
But hey! Why get upset? Pillsbury Doughboy look-alike Maurice Strong was paid $1 million a year for two years to destroy jobs and the efficiency of Ontario Hydro as its chairman.
Ontario Environment and Energy Minister Chris Stockwell admitted on Studio
Two that the government was in a hurry to sell Ontario Hydro, but
that the judge said, no, we have to wait until the bill goes through the
House. "I don't understand," Stockwell said. "If it's ours,
why can't we sell it?"
The latest propaganda to calm the public's ire is, "We'll keep 51 per
cent of the shares and sell
Being a little bit privatized is like being a little bit pregnant. Anyone who can entertain a thought knows that private shareholders do not pay off debts; they will be taking money out. Are Ernie and Mikey mathematically challenged that they don't get this?
This transparent scheme is beside the point, however. They don't have
the right to sell
Another of the logically challenged, Norm Rubin of Energy Probe, is from the Maurice Strong school. He doesn't like the government "empire building" (but for privateers, it's okay). "They might not free up the money to rebuild," Norm whines.
Adam Beck, a man of logic and true common sense, saw his dream to institute publicly owned, inexpensive electricity to Ontarians become reality. He must now be a veritable Catherine Wheel, spinning at warp speed.
Such authorities on privatization as Myron Gordon, professor emeritus of finance at the Rotman School of Management; John Wilson, former president of the Society of Energy Professionals; and Andrew Holmes of the Financial Times; all agree that the privatization of Ontario Hydro will be disastrous for the province.
Gordon writes: "Soon after Ontario's electricity is deregulated and privatized, our electricity prices will be pushed to the same level as that of our U.S. neighbours. Ontario's standard of living will drop; there will be fewer jobs; and our economy will nose dive. Deregulation will allow wealthy electricity-hungry Americans to deplete our supply. This will increase the chance of blackout."
They are so right. The only service we will get from privatization will be lip service.
Our economy will be crippled, along with all the seniors on fixed incomes who will be freezing in the dark. Businesses will not come here any more for our cheap electricity. Small business will suffer. There will be no conservation because the corpos will never sell less product. There will be no information of any kind -- especially about the nuclear portion of Ontario Hydro. The coal-fired plants, which now operate only in emergencies, will be running full time to send electricity to New York.
The annual death toll in Ontario from particulates in the air is over 1,000. This human cost will escalate, along with the prices.
Quebec, Manitoba and B.C. are still regulating, keeping prices low for their residents and selling the excess at huge profits to the U.S. Why then is the Ontario government selling our inheritance for the mess of pottage when it could easily pay the debt and make profits by doing what more intelligent governments are doing? Why are Mike and Ernie trying to force the yard sale of a public asset that brings in $600 million every year?
Clearly, their obsession with destroying our economic base has nothing to do with "common sense". The cherry that tops off this silver-plated turd is that NAFTA, which has no claim on our power now, will have complete control if Ontario Hydro is privatized.
We are left with the inescapable conclusion that Mike and Ernie have some undisclosed agenda which compels their party to waffle, whine and windbag whenever they are confronted with their perfidy. They resort to the threadbare "greater choice" ploy -- which didn't fly in the health care debates or the "education" fiasco. Stockwell browbeats anyone with the temerity to question him. McGuinty has sat on the fence for so long that he is in danger of being impaled. Howard Hampton is unbowed and unstoppable, but perhaps a little too late.
This newspaper exposed the planned legalized robbery of Hydro back in 1998; why was nothing set in motion then? The hearings on Bill 35 were sparsely attended because the notices were almost clandestine.
Last Dec. 12, when Harris announced "the largest privatization in Canadian history," my question was: "Who will get the commission, Bay Street or Wall Street?" The brokers' fees would be $165 to $275 million. Profits at the Bruce Nuclear Plant have been handed to British Energy, a Thatcher privatization. Their cut was $90 million for the first six months.
The Common Stench Revolution, which is destroying our economic base, appears to be employed by such New World Odour international pawnbrokers as the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank. Joe Stiglitz, the former chief economist of the World Bank, spilled the beans on all the secret structural agreements that nations had to sign under threat of the pawnbrokers cutting off their credit. (These details were revealed by Greg Palast when he was interviewed by Alex Jones on the BBC last March 4.)
The tragic comedy is that no nation needs to borrow from any of these banking cartels. Any nation can set up its own central bank, based on its resources (which include its citizens' labour and intellect) and lend to itself for needed infrastructure at no interest.
Instead, governments have been coerced into allowing such private corporations as the "Federal" Reserve to print the peoples' money and issue their credit at interest to government. Likewise in Canada: we needlessly rent our own money from corporate banks. This has resulted in the privateers dictating to governments and the loss of democracy.
Now countries are being brought down like dominoes. Local banks are sold to foreign banks. Governments are "advised" to sell off their public assets, which are their economic base and their independence. After the legalized robbery of the public's goods, the Market de Sade spikes the prices. "Free" trade is pushed through by pretenders who turn out to be protectionist when it comes to the "competition" they're always lauding.
National economies are trashed, then bought up by the ones who trashed them. The permanent government, as Lewis Lapham calls it, then sets up its own (s)elections.
Argentina, forced by the IMF to sell off and privatize their public assets, is a warning to the rest of us. In that devastated country, two-thirds of the population are now taking part in what is called "dumpster diving" -- whole families go to restaurants where the affluent one-third dine, and forage through the dumpsters for food.
Banker-bullied sales of public assets, in order to pay unnecessary interest, are now ravaging nations and the environment. (For an in-depth report on this subject, see "The Market de Sade and the global plantation" on page 14 of the Oct./Nov. 2001 issue of this paper .)
Anyone who says no to the IMF (International Mugging Fraternity) meets with a happy little coup d'etat. After the most recent faux pas by the U.S., Venezuelan President Chavez was returned to power because the people knew he wanted them to share in their country's resources. But Chavez had better watch his back. Bush doesn't like his selling oil to Cuba; now Cuba's been added to the "axis of evil".
The water system of Buenos Aires was sold off for a song to Enron. In Chile, a pipeline was sold off to Enron. Lord Wakeham, head of NM Rothschild, authorized Enron to go into Britain and take over power plants and a water system. These are some of the details Greg Palast made public in his BBC interview.
According to the Chicago Tribune, the IMF just got their hands on the Great Lakes.
Enron was a dummy corporation, used to transfer assets to other corporations -- just a straw used to suck up citizens' assets everywhere. It had nothing of its own. That's why everyone took a bath -- except the criminal globalists and their agents.
Back home, the Bronfmans (who merged with Vivendi) are waiting in the wings to buy up our water. U.B.S. Warburg is waiting to buy up Ontario Hydro. And guess who advised our government to sell off our electric power base in the most stupid deal they've ever tried to force on us? Enron.
|Sydney White has been in public and diplomatic work all her adult life. A member of the Committee on Monetary and Economic Reform, she teaches Studies in Propaganda at the Free University of Toronto.|