WHAT OTHERS SAY
WHAT CAN DELIVER, WHAT CAN’T
AFfter the recent gas shortages across the country, the prime minister sacked the heads of the two distribution companies possibly in an attempt to Appear In CHARGE. However, Is such Arbitrary SACKING of senior oficials accepted as a sign of a decisive person in charge — ie the prime minister — exercising executive authority? When you read an analysis of the decision such as the one in this newspaper’s leader on Friday, you form the opposite view. A few lines from the editorial in a reminder of what it said: “On the face of it, assigning blame to the MDS of the gas distribution companies appears odd, given that they are not responsible for the production of gas or for its import. Besides, they neither draw up the merit order list nor do they decide how the pace of the expansion of gas demand is to be regulated. Their role is simply to run the gas distribution system. If there is a shortage of gas in the system, or if there is a technical outage at some point that is going to constrict the supply of gas, this information is available to authorities in the federal government in real time. “At least Four oficials In ISLAMABAD, with ofices very Close to EACH other — THE secretaries for power and petroleum as well as the ministers of these respective Divisions — HAVE In THEIR ofices screens Displaying real-time DATA on How much GAS Is In THE system, How THE ields ARE Functioning, how the distribution system is operating, and so on.
or all his talk about a supposed national security crisis on the border with Mexico, President Donald Trump is ignoring the potential crisis the federal shutdown is creating elsewhere in the country. Trump has essentially taken nine federal departments and dozens of federal agencies hostage in an effort to coerce Congress into spending $5.7 billion on the bigger, longer border wall he promised on the campaign trail to build (supposedly at Mexico’s expense, but now on the US taxpayers’ tab). Vital government services and responsibilities ARE BEING SACRIICED In THE political standoff, AND there’s no end in sight. In some cases, the shutdown is making communities less safe. The western United States has experienced a series of catastrophic ires In recent years, yet much of THE prevention work NEEDED to REDUCE THE risk Is on Hold During THE shutdown. FIREIGHTER HIRING AND training Is frozen, as are contracts for equipment and aircraft. The U.S. Forest Service has suspended controlled burns of dead timber and dry brush, steps that ARE DESIGNED to REDUCE THE Fuel AND Intensity of Future wildires. THIS Is All essential work that can be done only during the increasingly short off-season, AND stopping those Efforts leaves Both ireighting AGENCIES AND wildland communities less prepared. Los Angeles Times