Yes, Mr. Speaker, I will. The speech is in order because it will be setting the stage and the background for subdivision B of division 9 and subdivision G of division 9. The background is necessary in order to tie it all together.
Mr. Gallant's quote continues:
That e-mail exchange contained Ms Johnston’s suggestion to engage Tyler Hamilton, a contributor to Toronto Star, as an “expert” to counter the Adams and Gallant duo who “are killing me”; Chin agreed. Shortly after, Hamilton received a contract from the Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) for a report on the smart grid.
According to former Pollution Probe executive director Tom Adams:
In July 2011, Tyler Hamilton, a Toronto Star journalist then taking government cash under the table to promote its smart grid agenda, published a “news” report in the Toronto Star extolling the relationship between Air Miles and the [Ontario Power Authority]. As usual, Hamilton failed to disclose to his readers his then ongoing financial relation with the Ontario government energy programs.
As revealed through the gas scandal disclosures, in November 2010 Chin had proposed that Hamilton be “engaged for central” to aid with rebutting criticism of the government’s Green Energy and Green Economy Act.
...Chin also described Hamilton’s journalism as part of the intellectual foundation for Ontario’s Green Energy and Green Economy Act.
Ben Chin’s electricity career helps to illuminate the real purposes driving those with their hands on the levers of power in Ontario’s electricity system. Practical solutions to Ontario’s energy problems were never the focus for the team Chin played for. Weaving his way around the in-house and outsourced government sector, Chin was engineering a conservation PR culture. At the same time as the “Count Me In” program was being formulated, Ontario was establishing itself as a massive electricity exporter, selling enough discounted and often free power to neighbouring jurisdictions to power substantial cities. To the extent that the conservation promotions and subsidies Chin worked on actually reduced usage in Ontario, the benefits were mostly captured by neighbour utilities. The conservation PR that Chin was engineering was focused on a different kind of power.
I have more from the Energy Perspectives blog, and then I will be back on this one. It states:
The spin emanating from the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) and the Prime Minister himself is not all that different than what we were hearing several years ago during the gas plant scandals days. ...
Those two unelected individuals (Butts and Chin) originally involved in the Ontario electricity muddle now find themselves named as two (out of eleven) of the bullies pressuring [the former justice minister] to grant SNC-Lavalin a DPA (deferred prosecution agreement). In the case of the [Green Energy Act] and the gas plant scandal it took much longer to surface in the public eye than the current [SNC-Lavalin] scandal so it would appear the Chin/Butts team has lost some of the spin abilities they displayed in the past.
From the former attorney general, I quote:
On Sept. 20, my chief of staff had phone calls with Mr. Chin and Justin To, both members of the Minister of Finance’s office, about DPAs and SNC. ...
...Gerry talked to me about how the statute was a statute was passed by [former Conservative prime minister] Harper and that he does not like the law. I said something like that is the law that we have. ...
The foregoing led to the former attorney general saying this:
I will now read to you a transcript of the most relevant sections of a text conversation between my chief of staff and me almost immediately after that meeting.
Jessica: “Basically, they want a solution. Nothing new. They want external counsel retained to give you an opinion on whether you can review the DPP’s decision here and whether you should in this case.... I told them that would be interference. Gerry said, 'Jess, there is no solution here that does not involve some interference.' At least they are finally being honest about what they are asking you to do! Don’t care about the PPSC’s independence. Katie was like 'we don’t want to debate legalities anymore....' They keep being like 'we aren’t lawyers, but there has to be some solution here.' ”
I—MOJAG—texted: “So where were things left?”
Jessica: “So unclear. I said I would of course let you know about the conversation and they said they were going to 'kick the tires' with a few people on this tonight. The Clerk was waiting outside when I left. But they said that they want to set up a call between you and the Prime Minister and the Clerk tomorrow. I said that of course you would be happy to speak to your boss! They seem quite keen on the idea of you retaining an ex Supreme Court of Canada judge to get advice on this. Katie Telford thinks it gives us cover in the business community and the legal community, and that it would allow the Prime Minister to say we were doing something. She was like 'If Jody is nervous, we would of course line up all kinds of people to write OpEds saying that what she is doing is proper.' ”
The foregoing highlights the unmitigated gall of two unelected individuals who, for whatever reasons, see themselves as kingmakers, much as they did for the McGuinty government—