Not long ago I wrote about how it was revealed that taxpayers spent $600,000 on Liberal knickknacks including 1,200 golf balls inscribed with the initials “J.C.” which, it can be reasonably assumed, did not stand for Jesus Christ.
Now it comes out that the Liberals also spent… how much on souvenir Jean Chretien neck ties? They apparently don’t shop where I shop. I’ve never paid more than about $40 for a tie, and that was when I was spending my own money. The Liberals managed to pay much more by funneling the $60,000 which they spent on these ties through a Liberal Party-friendly “ad firm”. Liberals “ties” all around!
I guess since they had such a huge laundry already established with which to launder taxpayer money (this according to Jean Carle, Chretien’s own director of operations), they might as well produce some clothing items to launder along with the taxpayer cash. As we know from the Liberals’ official “One-Tonne Challenge” program ads, always fill the washing machine right up and do full loads with cash, ties, maple leaf lapel pins, golf balls —whatever—in order to help meet the Kyoto requirements according to the desperate environment-wary Liberals.
Was an audit ever done asking the question: “Who in the world wants a ‘souvenir Jean Chretien neck tie’?”—because the results would be amusing if nothing else.
And then how does a government bureaucrat (actually, in Liberal land, a whole platoon of unionized government bureaucrats would no doubt be deployed if they had the slightest interest) measure the “effectiveness” of this expenditure after it was made, and all the said neck ties were handed out to people who didn’t want one and probably threw them in the garbage?
What we can say for sure is that these precious Jean Chretien neck ties have certainly helped Canada earn the reputation it has in the world today: its military might, its peacekeeping and humanitarian aid deployments, its leadership in, well, never getting mentioned as a player in any respect in any international media for any reason; and to spread the word about our effectiveness in, well, spending taxpayer cash on garbage that promotes Liberals to make sure they constantly get elected, no matter what they do.
The Liberal government paid nearly $60,000 for 480 neckties to be given to foreign dignitaries on Jean Chretien’s trips abroad, the federal sponsorship inquiry heard Monday.
The information came to light just as the former prime minister was getting ready to testify at the inquiry. Chretien was scheduled to begin his testimony Tuesday morning and continue for up to two full days.
The ties, which came in two styles and bore maple leaf logos, were ordered in 1998 after Jean Pelletier, who was Chretien’s chief of staff, complained about the poor quality of souvenir neckwear his boss had been handing out.
“I thought Canada deserved a tie that held its own, that had some allure,” Pelletier told the inquiry headed by Justice John Gomery.
He said he asked Jean Carle, then Chretien’s director of operations, to come up with better products.
[…] Documents provided by the Public Works Department show that [Montreal ad agency Lafleur Communication] Lafleur charged $88 apiece for 240 ties in one style, and $105 apiece for another 240 in the second style.
The two lots added up to $46,320 – but that wasn’t the end of it.
Lafleur also billed Public Works for commissions of more than $8,000 for the agency’s work on the project.
Another firm, Pluri Design, collected $4,500 as a subcontractor, billing for “strategic research” as well as a range of other creative and production services.
Previous evidence has shown that Pluri Design was owned by Jacques Corriveau, a Montreal businessman who also did electoral campaign work for the Liberals.
A onetime vice-president of the federal party, Corriveau provided outdoor advertising signs for all Liberal candidates in Quebec in the 1993, 1997 and 2000 elections.
His name surfaced last week at the inquiry, in connection with other subcontracts he obtained through Groupe Polygone, a printing firm that did millions in sponsorship business with Ottawa.
Former public works minister Alfonso Gagliano has adamantly denied claims by opposition MPs that Corriveau was favoured for sponsorship deals because of his previous election work.
The fancy neckties weren’t the only items that found their way to the Prime Minister’s Office under the catch-all heading “promotional items” funded by the sponsorship program.
Chretien was also furnished with dozens of golf balls embossed with his signature, in a deal that Gomery denigrated as “small town cheap” in a pre-Christmas Media interview.