Government Ethics. An Oxymoron?

For years most of us have marveled at how business leaders learned that they can can seemingly divest themselves of responsibility when it comes to losses, lawsuits, union contracts, or monies owed to creditors by simply splitting their company into small subsidiaries. That way the small entity is wholy responsible for the problem and the parent company is insulated from any fallout which may occur during tough times. It is a kind of shell game business loves. The average person knows it is a scam but, ya know, we don't write the law.

In the last day or so an interesting story has hit the news in Saskatchewan. Big Sky, a hog producer, has filed for court protection from its creditors. Big Sky apparently owes several thousand dollars to farmers who provided the company with pig feed and it is reported, to other small companies doing work around the plant.

The farmers, quite justifiably are incensed. One guy is owed $47,000 for nine semi trailers full of barley he delivered and Big Sky won't pay up.

Here is the hook. The Saskatchewan Government owns 64% of Big Sky. So the Saskatchewan Government is shirking its responsibility in this matter and is stiffing its own citizans. Good work.

Saskatchewan Agriculture Minister Bob Bjornerud apparently told the media that the government has no obligation what so ever in this matter. Give your head a shake Bob, I think perhaps a course in ethics 101 is in order.

Brad Wall, a true believer in the old, bread and circuses principle, is on the front page of the Leader Post this morning, posing with the Saskatchewan Roughrider flag and a couple of Riders football players in front of the legislature and the Big Sky story doesn't appear until page B7. So, it is working.

Now if the Riders lose the Western Final this Sunday, Brad may have to pay up. If they win, the Farmers might have to wait a while for their money.

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