Poor David Orazietti. Some days the sadsack community safety and correctional services minister looks like he almost envies 24/7 sunny ways survivor Adam Capay.
Readers will recall Dave was left blaming underlings for the fucked-up plight of the Thunder Bay inmate, who spent four years in solitary confinement (shurely ‘adminishtrative shegregation’?!–ed.) in a plexiglass box where they never shut off the lights. UN critics say as few as 15 days locked in such luxury private accommodation constitutes – pas possible! – torture.
Shocked and appalled by the Capay revelations (despite the reports he receives every month on every sufferin’ bastard in solitary), Dave first mumbled the matter was out of his hands, then announced with much fanfare that Adam and what’s left of his fried faculties were being moved to a regular cell.
That’s when correctional union thingies kicked him in the goolies once again and revealed the inmate has merely been shuffled out of his torture chamber temporarily while it’s being renovated.
Not to worry though! Dave’s called yet another inquiry into such barbaric institutional practices – just like his predecessor Yasir Naqvi had 20 months previous, this time with former federal corrections investigator Howard Sapers ragging the ministerial puck until spring.
And still the minister’s cruel and unusual punishment continues. November 21: Another Monday morning, another front page, this time in the Globe and Minion: “Ontario ignored warnings on solitary confinement,” full of fresh merde from coroners’ inquests into the deaths of other solitary guests of the Queen at Thunder Bay.
Globe hack Adrian Morrow tried to follow up with the minister, and live-tweeted the result: “So, @DavidOraizetti [sic] became upset and stormed off when I asked him who was responsible for this.”
It didn’t have to be this way. Last year, Dave thought he’d found the perfect escape hatch back home in Sault Ste. Marie, friendly territory where the honourable member completes a hat-trick of Liberals with MP Terry Sheehan and Mayor Christian Provenzano (gormless nephew of late Liberal MP Carmen Provenzano).
Joe Fratesi, the egregious long-self-serving mayor best remembered for declaring the city a unilingual speak-white zone in the 90s – and for engineering his subsequent appointment as the $105,000 Chief Administrative Officer while still in the mayor’s office – had finally declared himself all troughed out after 19 years, and announced his retirement.
Juicy pay bumps had doubled Fratesi’s pay package to $209,777 and a weary Orazietti, eyeing an ever-more-likely life in opposition under Premier Patrick Brownshirt, let Mayor Chris know that he’d be more than happy to ease into Joe’s CAO Barcalounger.
Denied! Provenzano, in an unforgivable lapse of partisan brotherhood, instead held an actual competition, and the gig went to outside hire Al Horsman, deputy CAO with the City of Guelph.
Orazietti has been sulking ever since, and even as the Soo’s unemployment rate flirts with 10 per cent and prime employer Essar Steel Algoma humps along under its latest bankruptcy protection, not a word passes between the city’s mayor and MPP.