Goodale commentary: Conservative “DOUBLE-SPEAK”
When Stephen Harper laments the federal deficit and claims he has to cut programs and services to save money – here are 10 things to remember:
1st — When these Conservatives came into office in 2006, they inherited a thriving economy, the best fiscal situation in all the G-8 group of world-leading countries, declining debt and taxes, and budget surpluses of at least $13 billion per year.
2nd — Mr. Harper squandered all that financial strength by 2008. He overspent at three-times the rate of inflation, slashed all contingency reserves and prudence factors from the federal budget, and put the country back into deficit again while the world economy was still buoyant and BEFORE there was any recession.
3rd — The Harper government turned a $13 billion Liberal surplus with a $50 billion Conservative deficit.
4th — The Conservatives are making their deficit worse, by $6 billion per year, by further cutting taxes for the biggest and wealthiest corporations (which already enjoy one of the most favourable tax rates in the world).
5th — Mr. Harper runs a bloated Cabinet, and now he’s increasing the size of his own office by another 20%.
6th — The Conservatives have wasted more than a billion dollars on extra partisan consultants and self-serving advertising.
7th — According to the Parliamentary Budget Officer, Mr. Harper is increasing prison costs in Canada by $10-$13 billion.
8th — By dumbing-down the Census, the Conservatives will actually increase StatsCan administrative costs by $30 million – to collect unreliable data.
9th — Mr. Harper blew $1.3 billion on extravagant arrangements for G-8/G-20 meetings, which accomplished nothing of any consequence.
10th — The Conservatives are pushing $26 billion out the door to buy new military equipment, without a whiff of competitive tendering.
How is any of this “fiscally responsible”?
Ralph Goodale, M.P.