2005/12/30

The Bombshell (continued)

Martin is getting dodgy on the issue as he tends to do when the pressure builds. See
CBC

"Martin said he and some other people in the Prime Minister's Office had advance knowledge of a government decision on income trusts before it was made public, something he says isn't out of the ordinary.

"I knew and I'm one of them. The fact is, that the people who would be on a need-to-know basis would have that information," said Martin.

"When asked if the alleged leak could have come from the PMO, the prime minister didn't give a direct answer.

"The fact is we are dealing with opposition allegations. And that's all we are dealing with. Opposition allegations during an election campaign," said Martin. "The RCMP obviously have a responsibility to follow up on matters such as this. That's their job."

"Martin said he believes the spike in trading is simply a reflection of how markets operate.

"There are a lot of people who are essentially ... saying out there that what you're dealing with is ... simply the way that ... markets function," said the prime minister.

Does Martin really expect us to believe that "the spike in trading is simply a reflection of how markets operate"??? Have you looked at the charts of trading that afternoon? "simply the way that ... markets function" Who comes up with these pathetic lines for him???

For those who are still unclear on what appears to have happened, the CBC has a little primer on Income Trusts on its website .

Here's an extract:

"What suggests that an advance leak of Goodale's announcement may have taken place?

Goodale did not make his announcement public until after 5 p.m. on Nov. 23, well after the stock markets had closed. But earlier in the day, especially during the last two hours of the trading day, there were noticeable spikes in the trading volumes and share prices of many income trusts and dividend-paying stocks – sometimes triple their normal volumes. These would be the kind of securities that would be expected to benefit from the type of announcement Goodale made later that day. Of the 10 most actively traded stocks on Nov. 23, eight were income trusts, trust candidates, or dividend-paying stocks. All eight went up between 5 and 7 per cent that day.

Is there general agreement that a leak did, in fact, take place?

The opposition parties and some market watchers looked at the trading patterns and saw something that suggested that some people knew something in advance. Forensic accountant Al Rosen, for instance, said ,"The volumes and prices are just screaming at you to say just a minute, someone knew more than the ordinary little bit of stuff." How big was the scream? One example: shares of BCE, which pays a rich dividend, had their biggest advance in four years on Nov. 23.

Christopher Thomas, whose company Measured Markets provides early warnings of unusual stock movements, agreed that the signals were flashing that day. "Statistically, these stocks were behaving as though something unusual was going on which the world at large was probably not aware of." "

My conclusion:

Why should Goodale resign? Because as Minister he was responsible for ensuring the security of tax sensitive policy/program changes until they were made public so that no one benefitted unfairly through advance (insider) knowledge. Some time between when the policy was scrambled together on the evening of November 22 and the time of the Minister's announcement it appears that someone leaked details of the Minister's pending announcement. The RCMP does not launch a criminal investigation unless it has reason to believe something illegal occurred. Does that mean Goodale himself personally did anything wrong? No. Does it mean he should resign? Yes, under the doctrine of Ministerial responsiblity.

2 comments:

John snow said...

Martin will get even more vacuous as his campaign disintegrates. Damn right, Goodale should resign! If Libs were smart, they would have had him step aside. Instead they've marked a big bullseye on Martin's forehead for the rest of the campaign and refocussed attention on the corruption issue. Dumb, dumb, dumb!

Mallory said...

The SES poll is being widely reported today.Martin is in trouble. Can he repair the damage? Maybe but not likely. This has brought the corruption issue to the fore in a very interesting way for the Conservatives.