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Tories regroup ahead of pivotal budget

From Monday's Globe and Mail

Harper team reveals spending plans, places budget in veteran hands as part of survival strategy ...Read the full article

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  1. swift avenger from Nova Scotia, Canada writes: Well this is the perfect economic storm approaching and our governments on every level will be caught flat-footed. Like Katrina the poor and vulnerable will be left to swim for it. The stimulus money is being squandered, the cronies and flunkies are lining up to get their cut. It is all about them, these people have no idea, at all. We need our political system steam-cleaned. Put abstention on the ballot, allow Canadians the ability to get the noses, of this useless lot, out of the trough for good.
  2. little bowpeep from Ha Ha Ha, Canada writes: Harper government pledged to set aside the partisan gamesmanship that turned its last economic foray into a near-fatal political crisis. 'We have grown-ups running the budget process,' a senior government official told The Globe and Mail yesterday on condition of remaining unidentified by name. All politics, all the time.
  3. Trapped in Stephen Harper's back yard from Airdrie, Canada writes: Let's all make a wish and throw the 64 billion dollar penny into the pond! Oh look! It sank!
  4. censured ... from Canada writes: all politics aside...is Harper not the most irritating politician to look at?
  5. Counterspinner tells the truth from Canada writes: That is rather biased - 'survival strategy'. Why not call it budget release planning? As for these leaks, it would be the only way to get their budget details out before the left wing media interviews the members of the separatist coalition and then all we'll hear is 'bad harper, bad conservatives, baaah, baaah, bray, bray, heehaw!'
  6. Ed Long from Canada writes: The PM is leaking a budget that takes priorities from previous deficit budgets produced by Liberals, nationally, and NDP, provincially.

    Even Jack Layton has said this is an NDP budget. He'll still vote against it because Jack has been bitten by the power bug.

    The recession is not unprecedented. The cause is unique and global. We have had 11% and 13% unemployment in the last 27 years. And when we had the latter, 7%-9% was viewed as a healthy labour market.

    We have had ten years of unprecedented growth, therefore any downturn becomes a major drama.

    Regardless of contextual perspective, the government must show concern via deficit spending yet not throw the door open to the printing press. And the government must start acting like a government of adults.

    I will say the media, specifically the Globe and CBC, have made this recession into a story of unprecedented and endless doom. The Globe ROB, Saturday, had one half page of factual business news. The rest was looking for innards to read.

    The situation is serious not dire.
  7. diane marie from Canada writes: Counterspinner:-- Posters have been whining for days that Mr. Harper has had to take dictation as to his budget. If this is so (and I'm not convinced), then why would the so-called compliant press, not to mention the opposition complain? There is a bit of inconsistency in these talking-points - I mean arguments.
  8. siren call from Canada writes: Unnamed officials speaking off the record,
    cabinet ministers like Moore sent out to attack,
    the Ontario 3-4 (Baird, Flaherty, Finley) given the most power, the majority of members muzzled,
    wild spending,
    trying to skirt the national media,
    plotting, plotting,
    how does it all LOOK -- seems like more of the same to me.
  9. diane marie from Canada writes: siren call:-- That comment in the middle of the article suggesting that Mr. Harper has been 'curtailed' was interesting. This sentence: 'Observers also say Mr. Harper's authority has been curbed, his agenda circumscribed and his instincts to attack Mr. Ignatieff curtailed.' By whom, one wonders.
  10. siren call from Canada writes: Never mind when faced with the fact that leaking the budget is hugely problematic -- receiving the usual refrain; 'the Liberals did it too'.

    Yes, and when the Libs were alleged to have done it in 2006, the RCMP stormed in. Probably cost the Libs the election to Prime Sinister Steve. Thanks, RCMP.
  11. Saskatchewan Free and Strong from Mongolia writes: censured ... from Canada writes: all politics aside...is Harper not the most irritating politician to look at?

    No...Iggy looks like Dracula and Lapdog Layton looks..............well like a lapdog.
  12. siren call from Canada writes: diane marie from Canada writes: This sentence: 'Observers also say Mr. Harper's authority has been curbed, his agenda circumscribed and his instincts to attack Mr. Ignatieff curtailed.' By whom, one wonders.
    ...................................

    Interesting indeed.

    Presumable by the 2 dudes with 70 years combined experience. (I hate that useless phrase.)

    Unless Karl Rove slipped across the boarder.

    Really, only the GG and/or Queen can directly 'curtail' the PM. Since it's unlikely to be them, I suspect it is political handlers to whom Mr. Harper bowed: more spinmeisters in charge.
  13. Island Man from Victoria from Canada writes: If Harper really wanted to reach out to the opposition he should have presented them the budget before he leaked it out. What he is doing is sticking it to them again by holding back the numbers while he undertakes his vote buying by putting every Canadian further into debt.

    And that $65 Billion deficit...that's over $2100 for every man woman and child in Canada added to the debt. How much input have you had to the $2100 Harper borrowed in your name? Or you child''s names? Were you consulted?
  14. David Blott from Dartmouth, NS, Canada writes:

    'There's a sense now that now's not the time for gimmicks,' said the Tory. 'We just have to appear serious at this stage. We can't appear to be poking our fingers in people's eyes.'

    Well that only took three years and the near loss of power for these guys to figure out. Perhaps in another ten years they may have developed to the point of being called competent.
  15. diane marie from Canada writes: siren call:-- I suspect that some of the behind-the-scenes big lights in the CPC yanked his chain. The same types of people that CPC-supporters deride in the LPC.
  16. R C from Canada writes: I hope what they are doing with this budget is the right way to go. I am not convinced. To me it doesn't seem like this is a problem Canada can solve. It's not of our making. It doesn't help that the media has got us all in such a worried state tho either as that's having a detrimental effect to. I'd have preffered it if we just let it go and see what happens. Let the other countries sink Trillions into the world econemy and we just ride it out. I know that seems selfish but it just doesn't seem like theres much we can do except patch what can't be fixed until everything starts working normally again.
  17. George Lucas from Canada writes: Within 2 months the Conservatives have gone from a projected balanced budget to a $64 million deficit for the next 2 years . That has to be a record. The most important part of the budget, tax cuts, which the opposition parties, have said they will not agree to, seem to be the only thing that has not been leaked.

    If broad based tax cuts are introduced I hope that the budget is defeated and a coalitation is quickly formed. Tax cuts will just lead to ballooning deficits in the future. Tax savings will be used to pay down personal debt and some will leak out to buy foreign goods, hence little short term good for the economy and a lot of long term harm to the economy.
  18. siren call from Canada writes: censured ... from Canada writes: all politics aside...is Harper not the most irritating politician to look at?
    ..............................

    Now, looky here!

    We Canadian taxpayers fork out darn good money for Harper to have a full time hair, make up and clothing person. It costs money to put lipstick on that -- man. And eyeliner too.

    I believe the correct response is -- my don't his mouth look purty. Well, maybe that's not exactly it.
  19. Mr X from Edmonton, Canada writes: 'the partisan gamesmanship that turned its last economic foray into a near-fatal political crisis. ' - Kind of a false statement when we know thy planned the coalition in advance.
  20. R C from Canada writes: George, I wouldn't mind seeing tax cuts. Personally I don't think many Canadians are adverse to that at all. Most of us believe (and rightly so) that we are one of the most (if not the most) taxed populations in the entire world. I don't know about many of you but .. I don't live beyond my means (so no credit here or excesses) and still theres nothing left at the end to put away for a rainy day.

    Really tho, I figure if we did away with alot of old ideas we might be able to trim off alot and still add to Canada's coffers. But I don't suppose that's going to happen anytime in the near future.. regardless of which party is in government.
  21. siren call from Canada writes: diane marie -- I didn't think big lights luminous enough to yank Harper existed in either the former PCP or current CP.

    I have been wondering if Harper's relative humility has been due to internal polls telling him something we don't know.

    Or worse, that this economic crisis really is some hugely serious stuff.

    Or there are even bigger plans on the horizon.
  22. diane marie from Canada writes: siren call:-- Well, there is Mr. M. and he is very well connected, as are no doubt some of the Calgary School members. As for Mr. M. - he may not hold much credibility these days - but he can still call on a lot of people. One of the most recent polls had Mr. Harper's approval ratings at the lowest level ever. I can't see anyone thinking that he's anything but a liability.
  23. Point Blank from Vancouver, Canada writes: This budget will survive or fall based on Harper's tax cuts. The bigger and more they will leave us all in structural deficits the more likely his government will be terminated. Into either an election or a Coalition government. It's been up to Harper all along. Too bad he had to play his games in the fall. This article tells me that the Conservatives blew it in the fall and they knew they blew it. Also, that children put out the economic statement in the fall and not real adults trying to prepare us for the recession. If only Harper had the fortitude to put a real budget together and not play these games in the fall we would not be where we are today and his government's reputation would not be so damaged.
  24. Tom Abraham from nelson, Canada writes: Well I think it is fair to say that whether or not you support the coalition, it is the catalyst for the Conservatives finally getting off their partisan duffs, listening to a broad spectrum of ideas and hopefully coming up with a thoughtful budget. Furthermore, I think that Stephan Dion should be acknowledged for the many good ideas he put forth in his ill fated election campaign. Many of the ideas which the Conservatives arrogantly ridiculed him for are now being used by them to formulate their plans.
    Stephen Harper's smallmindedness, arrogance and destructive mega - partisanship, of which he has been suspected for many years by many Canadians, has been brought to the fore by this episode. Not that I will ever vote for him, but I do hope for the sake of the country, he has made a serious effort at redemption during the prorogue. The blatant budget leaks however still point to a man unable to resist gamesmanship in the face of more important objectives.
  25. Robin Hannah from Canada writes: Canada needs a reminder, though maybe times have changed - but please beware, my fellow Canadians. Smilin Jim Flaherty and Mike Harris, and other current Harper cronies, were the guys who stuck it to the poor and the working-class of Ontario during the 90s, and Ontario has never been the same since. Apparently their smiles and common-sense revolutions didn't pan out. For the working-class, at least. Ontario's been going down ever since. But they're going to look us in the eye now, Stephen Harper and Mikey Harris and smilin' Jim Flaherty, are going to look us in the eye and tell us Canada is going to be okay. I'm sorry. I say, do not trust these men for one minute.
  26. paul y from Mississauga, Canada writes: Why are you people sounding out so bad about tax cuts? We have been hammered for years on our taxes and it is hard to plan ahead when at the end of day the gvt taxes us too death. I am not for l/t deficits, but there are ways to reduce the deficit. Lower taxes help with our competitiveness and will eventually lead to good things down the road. The economy will rebound and the world will again need our nickel, iron & Ore, Zinc, etc. You people out their our anti-Harper and that is your right. However, do you think the Liberals would do any better. The Libs gvmt created the deficits in the first place and all they ever did was tax and spend. The economy was very good in the Liberal years, but did they ever reduce our taxes down and the answer is no. Libs said they would get rid of the GST and now look at the books and seen this what not possible. This recession is global and takes certain measures to help the economy, but in the end Government can not spend their way out of a recession. All gvt can do is look at ways to help Cdns and Companies weather the storm. I would have like to see more talk around Green Energy and Innovation being leaked out, because every recession was led out by the next innovation. I believe we are missing the boat on green tech/Energy. I have emphasize this to my MP and the Minister of Finance on several occasion on where I like to see money spent. The budget will also address many aspects, so to get caught up on one issue is to lose sight of what it is to accomplished. You will see money for the following: 1. Infrastructure 2. Support to Cdn Manufacturers 3. Altnernatives Fuels/Green Technology 4. Social Housing 5. Income Tax Cuts 6. Healthcare 7. UIC Program So, Liberal Finance Critic should exam again what the is required to help Cdns in this time of uncertainty. Beside, did you hear him speak, does he no look clueless. Nothing worst that haveing a non-financial person speak about financial numbers.
  27. Misery No one from Toronto, Canada writes: The Tories are running scared why else would they release the budget details which is not normal and was never revealed in the past before budget time.

    They are so desperate it makes one want to puke. And the pot belly gets bigger by the day.
  28. R C from Canada writes: Paul while I agree with most of what you said I have to wonder about the green part.

    First off what Green fuels/Tech are you talking about? Considering our latest winter im not sure many of these electric vehicles can hold up to it all.. plus they also have their own energy concerns. My whole thought behind going green is this ...

    Everyone wants to help the environment.. cleaner air, cleaner water, less waste ect.. but their certainly not sold on climate change and even for those that are ... I think we have to kinda discover something better first before we can move to it. That's the big problem. Nothing better out there and many of the things they have come up with are either not affordable or not viable options.

    But anyway I do agree with the rest of what you typed.
  29. J Birch from Hamilton, Canada writes:

    The Great Oink has lost control of the Agenda.

    Ignatieff can sit back and watch these Bozos self immolate.

    Harper's Govt is a dead man walking.

    Pity we Canadians will have to pay for the Conservative's Fiscal incompetence, but that is how its going to be - shame they didn't reelect Martin in 2006.

    Could have saved a lot of bother.

    Oh well, people wanted a 'change'.

    As the old adage goes: Be careful what you wish for.

    .
  30. Phineas freekinstone from who knows ,who cares, Canada writes: poor Iggy ,nothing to huff about .......ha ha
  31. Phineas freekinstone from who knows ,who cares, Canada writes: J birch thanks for reminding us that the world economy is Harpers fault.......
  32. Jaded in Vancouver from Canada writes: This is simply irresponsible reporting by The Globe and Mail. The budget has not yet been released, the PM and his ilk are desperately trying to cling to Parliament, and we have no facts in yet . . . the media spin is just that - speculation.

    I expect nothing less than excellent reportage from the G&M, and you are sorely disappointing !
  33. Mrs. Whiggins from Canada writes: Vote them out on the Throne Speech citing non-confidence. After all, the money promised in the last budget hasn't even be released. And, the CPC is touting this budget as a liberal/ndp budget, SO.... vote them out and present the real Liberal budget.

    Then, Canadians can get a look at the real books, not the numbers Harper has allowed to be bandied about to all and sundry. What sort of economist would allow leakage like the Harper party has done?

    There oughta be a law!

    Vote NO CONFIDENCE over the Throne Speech on the grounds that the Harper Government simply cannot be trusted, and the proof is in the last budget and the lastest FU to Canadians.
  34. Rollo 8>) from Belgium writes: siren call from Canada writes: censured ... from Canada writes: all politics aside...is Harper not the most irritating politician to look at?
    ..............................

    The man needs a hat. Beret, no. Stetson, maybe, a good diversion for the viewer. Glasses could to do it too. Can you see him in Gucci?

    Mrs Whiggins, I like pre-emptive tactics too. Based on this unprecadented roll-out, I agree, just to start with the most recent, we can go on. Mr. Harper's cynical bet is that he can outspend the liberals, and the liberals won't vote him out until they see whether or not they get a pony too.
  35. Rollo 8>) from Belgium writes: The NDP has already said it will oppose the budget and the Bloc Québécois has set the conditions of its support extremely high.

    Right on. I'd settle for a hi-speed, elevated double track passenger rail line between Montreal and Quebec City. The cherry would be getting an electric line to reduce pollution on the corridor, like in France and Spain, none of this whiney diesel electric.
  36. Catherine S. from Canada writes: censured ... from Canada writes: all politics aside...is Harper not the most irritating politician to look at?

    Oh censured, Iggy is THE most irritating politician to listen.... Iggy does not engage us - he paternizes and looks down his nose at us, as he lectures us. Just listen to him in unbiased manner.

    Iggy and Layton are just power hungry politicians. They do not care about the everyday people - because by their own actions they do not demonstrate they are not the everyday people and they have NO clue what the everyday people worry about.
  37. Bill bailey from Canada writes: 64 billion... HaHaHa.

    We can probably double or triple this number. Just like in the states... 800 billion will soon turn into two or three trillion. And all on the back of 'tax cuts.' HaHaHa_...
  38. Douglas MacDONALD from Canada writes: Hey George Lucas its 64 billion not 64 million there is a big difference between the two .
  39. joe louis from Canada writes: If we're going to strangle government and drown it in the bathtub, we have to make the situation even worse. Spend like there's no tomorrow over the next couple of years and increase the tax cuts to benefit my friends and I. Once the financial crisis is significantly magnified we'll have to go ahead with our deep cuts to health, education and the environment and all those other wastes of money. The private sector needs to expand its markets and profits.
  40. Luke Ellis from Sudbury, Canada writes: Prime minister Harper: Holy crap guys I just realized that I might actually loose control when parliament comes back, I mean the libs and NDP kept saying it but I think they are serious! Quick get me a couple guys that actually know something about the economy! At least if I go down I can blame hem for bad advice.
  41. John Brown from Maritimes, Canada writes: Of course we all want tax cuts, that provides more cash in our pockets but is it truly going to help the economy? I see places like the Dollar Store and Giant Tiger doing a landmine business but will that help Canadian or US manufacturing? I talked with a friend who is savvy with money matters and he has said that for the short term the tax cuts will help us all but for the long term, more and more taxpayers are going to end up first on unemployment then welfare as more jobs are cut from the manufacturing sector. Sorry state of affairs this and I don't envy anyone having to make the decision on Canada's future, even Steve. Job retraining is great but for what? There are only some many jobs to go around and retraining aside, you still need to pay bills while you learn, I an doing that now and it is hard.
  42. lord cross of Blacks Harbour from BLACKS HARBOUR NB, Canada writes:
    And the little short guy roars onstage to declare:

    Consumers; SPEND, SPEND, SPEND!

    Bankers; LEND, LEND, LEND!

    And, for the remainder; 'I already gave it to you, in my November [ E = FU ] last November. If you don't like it, you can just read my FFFFFFForecast!'
  43. Neil Alexander from Oakville, Canada writes: Canada is in trouble we have a conservative party not 2 months ago saying we did not need such a stimulus package and now we go into debt for 64 B, Harper will do anything to stay in power, a Liberal party that supports terrorist's and bringing them to Canada, and the NDP just trying to find power. Dienfenbaker & Pearson must be rolling in their graves wondering what has happened. The sad part to all this is while the children play in Parliament the Canadian population suffers
  44. lord cross of Blacks Harbour from BLACKS HARBOUR NB, Canada writes:

    Neil Alexander from Oakville, Canada writes:

    *'Canada is in trouble we have a conservative party not 2 months ago saying we did not need such a stimulus package and now we go into debt for 64 B, Harper will do anything to stay in power,'*

    Exactly, Neil ... and the trailing portion as well. I count 143 'shovel-ready projects,' beginning with A for Abbott, ending with Y for Young, (your guy) ... They're going to be wearing this one big time.

    Come out, Come out, all you P-CRAP SpinMeisters! Guy, Kory, Ezra, and Chandelier ... from wherever you're hiding.
  45. aldyen donnelly from Vancouver, Canada writes: I am confused. Jean Chretian become PM and Paul Martin Finance Minister in November 1993. The budget DEFICIT for the 12 months ending March 31 1994 was $38,530 billion and they actually added $44,063 billion to the gross federal debt. Perhaps one could argue that was the fault of the Mulroney government. But Chretian/Martin ran a $36,632 billion DEFICIT for fiscal 94/5, adding another $44,064 billion to the gross federal debtload. In 95/6 DEFICIT = $30,006 and gross debtload jumped another $42,530 billion. In 96/7 the DEFICIT was down to $8.719 billion, but they added $18,140 billion to gross federal debt. In 1999/2000 they ran a $14,258 billion surplus, but still added $1,459 billion to gross debtload. In 2000/01 they reported a $19,591 billion surplus, but shaved only $13,000 million (yes, only million...that is not a typo) off the now much increased federal debt. By all acounts (including mine) Chretian/Martin did a great job of managing Canada out of a financial crisis. They cut federal borrowing costs will increased debtload. But it involved chocking up some huge budget deficits that were, in both nominal and real terms, much larger than our current government is proposing. Over the 3 years ending March 31 2008, the Harper government reported combined budget surpluses 1.59 times the surpluses that Martin reported in his two years as PM. Harper's average budget surplus over two years ending March 31 2008 was $2.7 billion higher than the Libs' 1998 through 2006 annual average average. Debt carrying costs continued to fall under Harper, though only slightly. It is not my intention to suggest that the Chretian/Martin Libs were bad fiscal managers. But where on earth does everyone get the idea, based on their acutal history, that the Libs managed and would manage their way out of a financial crisis any differently than Harper proposes? History suggests, if anything, a 2009 Lib deficit would be larger.
  46. Vern McPherson from Canada writes:
    Even as stevie is forced to eat crow he plots to buy as many votes as he can.
  47. lord cross of Blacks Harbour from BLACKS HARBOUR NB, Canada writes:

    aldyen donnelly from Vancouver, Canada writes:

    And, depending on who you read, The Last Great Emperor, Byron of Muldoon, Ka-Ching Ka-Ching Dynasty only received $225-$300 thousand in plain [ ? blue/brown ? ] kraft envelopes with Karlheinz claiming his focus for distribution was $20 Million. It may come out in the INQUIRY, although with the legal constraints and limitations, we may never see Stephen Colbert *truthiness.*
  48. Jim Maxwell from Canada writes: Canada should use the $64 billion as a downpayment on General Motors, which will soon be quite inexpensive, and become a world leader in engineering green automobiles and reap the profits.
    The green paint could be extracted from our abundant forest pigmentation.
    Lets do something innovative here.
  49. Spin Assassin from Ville du Quebec, Canada writes: Something bothers me about this foregone conclusion that tax cuts will go directly to savings. Where do we get this idea?

    Take your average thinking citizen: he/she is afraid of not having a check next month. They decide to fatten up for the winter and put away lets say $1000 a month until they are eventually laid off. (most of them won't be laid off, most of them will buy a new car or laptop when the sun comes out)

    Now they get a tax cut. Will they now save $1020?
    NO! They will congratulate themselves with a bottle of wine and a movie. Job well done. Goals reached for the month. What a smart taxpayer.
  50. John B from Vancouver, Canada writes: Who is Guy Giorno and where did he come from?

    He's been COS for 6 months and he has almost single-handedly brought the government down.

    Now the PM's COS is frozen out of budget discussions?

    Looks to me like this administration is in big trouble.
  51. lord cross of Blacks Harbour from BLACKS HARBOUR NB, Canada writes:
    Spin Assassin from Ville du Quebec, Canada writes: Something bothers me about this foregone conclusion that tax cuts will go directly to savings. Where do we get this idea?

    It's based on the U.S. experience. They have had more frequent giveaways / tax breaks / stimuli. The Dubya tax cuts went to the top 1% earners, not the middle class. The current re-ordering of the tax system is solely dedicated to rollback of the cut to the 1%, and a rollout to the middle class.

    I don't know what your experience has been with layoffs. Usually, they don't take time to give a preamble ... although you have an instinctive foreboding.

    It happened to me FOUR times ... '73, '80, '81, '89. Finally, I told them, 'You could have at least told me not to bother bringing my lunch!' Now lookit the Nortel debacle and the pensioners lined up in the hope they will be sheltered in some way. Don't get me WRONG. I feel for everyone involved in *that experience.*
  52. Vern McPherson from Canada writes:
    Lets not forget that of the estiomated 34 billion deficit upcoming for 09/10, ... 15 billion of it is due to COns screw-ups trying to buy votes, spending billions of surplus they inherited and cutting reserves to the bone.

    That means almost half of the deficit is directly the COns fault.

    Maybe that is the part little stevie is attempting to cover up with all these leaks after his absurd contention a few weeks ago that there would be a surplus.
  53. Rusty Waters from Canada writes: Nothing to help out the University students. I guess Higher education is not a priority with this government. Most middle class parents are using their disposable income to send their students to university while the parents who send their students to trade schools will have no cost. It's not fair.
  54. John Connor from Canada writes: Robin Hannah from Canada writes: Canada needs a reminder, though maybe times have changed - but please beware, my fellow Canadians. Smilin Jim Flaherty and Mike Harris, and other current Harper cronies, were the guys who stuck it to the poor and the working-class of Ontario during the 90s, and Ontario has never been the same since.
    -----------------------------------------------
    And fence-sitter McGuinty finished the job with his 'health premium'. Did you have a point, or were you simply blowing smoke?
  55. lord cross of Blacks Harbour from BLACKS HARBOUR NB, Canada writes:
    Vern McPherson from Canada writes:

    *Maybe that is the part little stevie is attempting to cover up with all these leaks after his absurd contention a few weeks ago that there would be a surplus.*

    In the face of Flairity's [ E = FU ] and his posi-tron-ic positioning of an outrageous untruth about the state of the economy, linked to a cavalier attempt to crush political opponents, I rely on ALL opposition parties and the mainstream media (best of all the Globe) to get at the details of what is forthcoming. I don't believe the Bank of Canada's contention that their early work on monetary policy will happily see us turn the corner after June '09.

    I think we're going to see a [ DEEP U ] downturn, lasting some 30 months ( or possibly longer, as the anchor drags on the bottom ). The 30-month scenario postulates a 'come-out point' of mid 2011.

  56. David Bakody from Dartmouth, Canada writes: Hello Canadians via the MSM ..... what happened to $12 billion we had in the bank? what happened to $3 Billion reserve fund? where was the $13 Billion deficit spent? How was the $75 Billion bailout money spent by the banks? 'FLofG' These questions must be answered now by taxpayers and journalist alike .... now before Harper & Co try and hide it all in Budget talk ....... NOW!!!!!!
  57. Brian B from Canada writes: aldyen donnelly from Vancouver says it right. The liberals have spent like crazy in the good times. What makes anyone think they will not continue their tax and spend ways?
    Look at Ontatio, McGuinty (I will not raise taxes) with his infamous health tax, tax on tires (for disposal) tax on a litre of car oil (for disposal) tax on paint to the tune of $20,000,000 per year and goodness knows how many other taxes. Sorry, none of the above were taxes, they were levys!
  58. prospector from blackfly country from Canada writes: Bring on another election and let the chips fall where they may.
  59. lord cross of Blacks Harbour from BLACKS HARBOUR NB, Canada writes:
    David Bakody from Dartmouth, Canada writes:

    Hello Canadians via the MSM ..... what happened to $12 billion we had in the bank? what happened to $3 Billion reserve fund? where was the $13 Billion deficit spent? How was the $75 Billion bailout money spent by the banks? 'FLofG' These questions must be answered now by taxpayers and journalist alike .... now before Harper & Co try and hide it all in Budget talk ....... NOW!!!!!!

    Morning David. I count $109 BILLION of BOC support pledges. We have had past indications of Flairity / Harper redefinition of what constitutes expenditure control. When the PBO cites a defence expenditures range of $18 to $24 BILLION over FIVE YEARS while indicating the lack of precision is the result of a lack of co-operation from the finance and defence ministries, you develop an instinctive feeling this government is deeply tainted.

    How many times have you seen Flairity / Harper making a statement / promise, to then run in a 180 degree opposite direction a few months later? I don't envy Sheila Fraser for the assignment which will ultimately rest on her shoulders. I do expect the lack of co-operation regarding disclosures to continue in the short term.
  60. aldyen donnelly from Vancouver, Canada writes: Vern...I am still having problems connecting the dots...Liberal surpluses 01/02 through 05/06 (give this last year to the Libs even though the Cons took power before the 4th 1/4), in billions: $8.048, $6.621, $9.145, $1.463, $13.218. Cons' surpluses 06/07 and 07/08, in billions: $13.752, $9.597. So the Cons' pre-recession surpluses look aligned with the Libs' prior 5-year trend. The Libs' did report two massive surpluses in 99/00 and 00/01 but there is something strange about them: reporting a combined 'surplus' of $34 billion, it looks like less than half of that was invested in assets the government could draw down when times got tough. My questions include: what are those financial assets worth today, since the markets crashed? It will depend on what they are. I guess we will see the answer to that question in the next couple of days. Cons' programme spending increases 06 to 07 and 07 to 08, in billions: $13 and $11. Libs' programme spending increases, in billions: 00 to 01, $11.8; 01 to 02, $$5.6; 02 to 03, $10.4; 03 to 04, $7; 04 to 05, $22.7; 05 to 06, -$1.2. So in nominal terms, the Liberal annual average spending increase between 1999/2000 and 2005/2006 was $9.8 billion/year compared to $12 billion for the Cons. Like others, I would much preferred not to see the Cons rate of spending increase, but it just is not at a scale--relative to the recent Lib pattern--that differentiaties the Libs that much from the Cons. Liberal spending increases were comparable or larger in recent years in which they booked comparable surpluses.
  61. Catherine Wilkie from Canada writes: Harper is the home room teacher who has lost credence with the class because of his own lack of talent.

    He still feels that he is King. Nobody is listening.
  62. mike sty the Coalition Centrist from Canada writes: David Bakody from Dartmouth, Canada writes: Hello Canadians via the MSM ..... what happened to $12 billion we had in the bank? what happened to $3 Billion reserve fund?
    --------------------------

    What happened to the $35 Billion dollars stolen from Canadian seniors ??????

    CONs and the eCONomy .....

    What part of fiscal responsibility do CONservatives ...not get.
  63. mike sty the Coalition Centrist from Canada writes: $65 Billion dollar CONservative deficit........

    Whats old .......is new again

    Mulroney must be proud
  64. Fiat Lux from Canada writes: :* '$1.5-billion in funding to boost training for laid-off workers including even those who are ineligible for Employment Insurance.' >>> Employment opportunities need be created/repatriated DEFINED before RETRAINING can be formulate. '$500-million in targeted support for older workers.' >>> Workers are employed ... 'targetted support' ... goldern handshakes? '$1-billion in funding for renovating social housing. $600-million for on-reserve aboriginal housing'. >>> Will transparency and accountability be an issue? In Cuba, I was shocked to see parts of Havana as if victim of nuclear holocaust ... perhaps the greyness was in the shadow of overcast sky. I've since been told that occupants, many squatters, did not have the resources to keep the once majestic buildings in good repair. '$400-million for seniors' housing' $75-million for housing for people with disabilities' >>> No problem here if they are affordable. '$1-billion community adjustment fund for single-industry and resource towns hardest hit by this economic crisis (forestry, mining and agriculture communities). This national fund would have flexible criteria for applicants in order to help their communities adjust to the changing economic climate' >>> No problem here if each community has mayor like former mayor of Port Alice, Mr. Pepper. '$160-million for new investments in arts and culture' >>> No problem here if this community perceives itself as incubator of investment and economic opportunities. '$150-million in forestry industry aid, including more than $100-million to develop new uses for forest products and $50-million to help promote the industry abroad as environmentally responsible' >>> No problem here if this community perceives itself as incubator of investment opportunities. '$550-million for farmers, including half a billion to help adjust to tough times and $50-million to expand slaughterhouse capacity' >>> No ... They are faring well 4now.* .
  65. old gristle from Canada writes: Dear Calgary. Mr. Harper has left your conservative camp. He is now a supporter of the Separatist-Socialist coalition. The PMO has also lost control and the number of leaks are not only incredible but unpresended.
  66. Fiat Lux from Canada writes: :* '$1.5-billion in funding to boost training for laid-off workers including even those who are ineligible for Employment Insurance.' >>> Employment opportunities need be created/repatriated DEFINED before RETRAINING can be formulate. '$500-million in targeted support for older workers.' >>> Workers are employed ... 'targetted support' ... goldern handshakes? '$1-billion in funding for renovating social housing. $600-million for on-reserve aboriginal housing'. >>> Will transparency and accountability be an issue? In Cuba, I was shocked to see parts of Havana as if victim of nuclear holocaust ... perhaps the greyness was in the shadow of overcast sky. I've since been told that occupants, many squatters, did not have the resources to keep the once majestic buildings in good repair. '$400-million for seniors' housing' $75-million for housing for people with disabilities' >>> No problem here if they are affordable. '$1-billion community adjustment fund for single-industry and resource towns hardest hit by this economic crisis (forestry, mining and agriculture communities). This national fund would have flexible criteria for applicants in order to help their communities adjust to the changing economic climate' >>> No problem here if each community has mayor like former mayor of Port Alice, Mr. Pepper. '$160-million for new investments in arts and culture' >>> No problem here if this community perceives itself as incubator of investment and economic opportunities. '$150-million in forestry industry aid, including more than $100-million to develop new uses for forest products and $50-million to help promote the industry abroad as environmentally responsible' >>> No problem here if this community perceives itself as incubator of investment opportunities. '$550-million for farmers, including half a billion to help adjust to tough times and $50-million to expand slaughterhouse capacity' >>> No ... They are faring well 4now.* .
  67. lord cross of Blacks Harbour from BLACKS HARBOUR NB, Canada writes:
    mike sty the Coalition Centrist from Canada writes:

    All very good questions. Unfortunately, they're rhetorical at this point, except for the Flairity / Harper U turn on income trusts.

    Maybe you could tell me whether this guy is assuming a prayerful stance, hoping for inspiration, *or auditioning for the sequel to The Shining ... Nicholson has indicated a lack of interest, so Flairity might get the part.*

    [[http://a123.g.akamai.net/f/123/12465/1d/www.calgaryherald.com/business/flaherty warns substantial budget deficit/1169610/1169507.bin]]
  68. NL Patriot from Republic of Newfoundland, Canada writes: George Lucas from Canada writes: If broad based tax cuts are introduced I hope that the budget is defeated and a coalitation is quickly formed. Tax cuts will just lead to ballooning deficits in the future. Tax savings will be used to pay down personal debt and some will leak out to buy foreign goods, hence little short term good for the economy and a lot of long term harm to the economy.

    ---------

    George the only way for the middle class worker to get anything from this budget is through Tax Cuts. It seems like everyone is happy to dole out Billions of dollars for the unemployed, the homeless, the elderly, the auto sector, the forestry and farming sector....

    What about the middle class people who are going to be the ones stuck paying all this off? What do we get?

    Nothing unless there are tax cuts so that we can somehow try and maintain the lives we have now. If I don't get anything from this budget then I would prefer that there is NO stimulus spending and the government just try and weather the storm.

    But as usual the socialist elites in this country want to punish the middle class by making us pay for everything and get nothing.
  69. Don Adams, the Centrist Conservative from Canada writes: LIEbbie spin....and the world turns! Rusty Waters...your statement 'send their students to university'..... thereby is one of the biggest problems in this Country...people 'sending' their kids to university. If the kids want to go, why aren't they paying the full shot themselves? Why should parents feel they have to pay? The kids really don't appreciate it.....kids don't appreciate anything they've been given..... people in general don't REALLY appreciate things unless they've earned them themselves. Re university.... so many kids take 'bird' courses to allow them to get a degree.... they give no thought to what they're going to do with a degree! What work is available with that degree! I know one youg lady, got herself 3 degrees....just couldn't decide what she wanted to do in life...and Daddy was paying! In fact, she was so stressed out, poor dear, after getting her 3rd degree...she needed a holiday! Yepper...Daddy paid. Girl sets off on a trip...next thing you know, she's met a British Gov't embassy employee in India, and is getting married....in an Indian ceremony! Hopes Mommy and Daddy can come.! Did I yet mention Mommy and Daddy had to mortgage the house to the hilt to pay for everything they did for darling daughter? Unfortunately, stories like this are all too common.
  70. I'm Stephen Harper and I'm not Lion from China writes: Well, three months of holidays for Canada's New prorogued minority and Harpers sneaking out from under the GG's skirt..........hope he doesn't see his shadow.
  71. Can't believe it from Canada writes: censured ... from Canada writes: all politics aside...is Harper not the most irritating politician to look at?
    ------------------------------------

    I share your pain......just not sure if I Tylenol or Morphine.....
  72. NL Patriot from Republic of Newfoundland, Canada writes: David Bakody from Dartmouth, Canada writes: Hello Canadians via the MSM ..... what happened to $12 billion we had in the bank? what happened to $3 Billion reserve fund? where was the $13 Billion deficit spent? How was the $75 Billion bailout money spent by the banks? 'FLofG' These questions must be answered now by taxpayers and journalist alike .... now before Harper & Co try and hide it all in Budget talk ....... NOW!!!!!!

    -------

    David I am not sure about all of that but I suspect that it went soemthing like this.

    The 12 Billion in the bank was paid down on the national debt. There was never really a 3 Billion reserve fund. What 13 Billion deficit are you talking about.

    There was no 75 Billion dollar bail out of Banks in Canada. The government bought secured mortages from the banks, so we gained assets.

    I think before we look for answers we should ask honest questions.
  73. Don Adams, the Centrist Conservative from Canada writes: This recession is actually a GOOD thing...going to smarten up a lot of people re ridiculous use of credit, paying cash as you go, and the value of saving for the future. Traditional Conservative values! :-)

    And, the more people hurt, the better they'l learn!
  74. lord cross of Blacks Harbour from BLACKS HARBOUR NB, Canada writes:

    I'm Stephen Harper and I'm not Lion from China writes:

    Well, three months of holidays for Canada's New prorogued minority and Harpers sneaking out from under the GG's skirt*..........hope he doesn't see his shadow.*

    How can anyone possibly know that? Like the rest of us, you'll have to wait until FEBRUARY THE TOOTH, when the embodiment of a loose Willy will appear from his resting place in Van Loon's riding.

  75. Catherine Wilkie from Canada writes: Harper is hiding in the shadows. First the Governor Generals. Now, President Obama.

    Harper is a financial dud. Flaherty takes his orders.
  76. Love my Country Expect More From My GOVERNMENT from TO, Canada writes: Rest assured the tory's will do what is best for them keeping their jobs and noses in the trough and not what's best for CANADA.
  77. Bob Dylan's Voice from Canada writes: For those of you who wonder where the money went and why it happened so suddenly lets take the example of resource companies.

    Through the first three quarters companies were making billions with the government taking about one third. Stocks peaked in the summer and government gets gains at about 20%. Suddenly in the 4th quarter the market crashes and so do resource companies. Witness Suncor turning from profits to losses.

    Suddenly the government is not getting money. In fact its providing refunds of past taxes paid as people claim their losses. That isn't just companies but people are claiming capital losses en masse when at the end of September there looked to be significant gains. On top of this the lower prices reduced the GST take on items like gasoline

    In September no one saw this big turnaround in economic fortunes (anybody who says they did is a liar) and it hits the government especially hard because they are in effect giving back taxes that were paid in 2007 and 2006 in some cases as people carry their losses back.

    That's how it happens and would have surprised any party in power even the immensely gifted Liberals (LOL).

    Harper would not have know that the markets were going from 15000 to 8000 and that the key tax paying companies were going from record profits to losses.
  78. Geoffrey May from Canada writes: Said the Tory ,' We just have to appear serious at this stage'. It's all about appearances .
    Harper pledges to 'set aside partisan gamesmanship', so naturally ,he sends out his minions , to engage in partisan gamesmanship, announcing where about 10% of Harper's deficit will go.
  79. Catherine Wilkie from Canada writes: Harper knew the economy was worsening.
    That is why he clamored to an election, breaking his own fixed date election promise.
  80. Mike Milne from Canada writes:
    Harper is Obama's poodle, Barrack Obama of the north, Harper = Obama [sqawk sqawk ]

    Finally middle class gets tax breaks. I'm tired of supporting Liberal-friendly ad companies with my money. That's the Liberal 'hidden agenda'.

    Liberals are confusing. They proclaim anti-American rhetoric, yet their leader is one.... . and it's this fact that causes much concern in the Liberal party.

    Ignatief = US Democrat = CDN Conservative
  81. lord cross of Blacks Harbour from BLACKS HARBOUR NB, Canada writes:
    NL Patriot from Republic of Newfoundland, Canada writes:

    What assets did Taxpayers gain in the $75 Billion Bank of Canada support for 'low down-payment, 40-year term mortgages?'

    When the mortgagee is unemployed, or simply 'walks' because the market value of the property has declined sharply, who gets to enjoy the 'spoils?'

    The Globe and Mail has gone on record as describing the deal as having all the features of the sub prime fiasco in the U.S.

    Sounds to me like you're a proponent of the Harper ( now's a good time to buy shares for mommy dearest ) or the Flairity ( buy high and sell low ) team.

    $105 Billion projected deficit by PBO ... Not including any other BOC misadventures. Sounds like a great mortgage to be placing at the feet of our children and future generations ... If you believe it must be paid back BY SOMEONE.
  82. Bill M from Canada writes: Can any one tell us what the Liberals would do differently?
  83. Crusty Curmudgeon from Ottawa, Canada writes: It seems to me that the fundamental difference between CONServative supporters and LIEberal supporters is that the LIEberals believe that they have a God-given right to take my money and spend it on things that they believe are a priority (like their ad friends in Quebec).

    The CONServatives on the other hand would rather that I kept my money and try to improve the lot of the taxpayer.

    Generally speaking I don't like politicians of any stripe -- but I somehow am drawn to the ones that don't want to take away the money that I earn.

    I admit that I am dumbfounded by people who claim that Mr. Harper is buying votes by letting me keep MY money -- I am also dumbfounded by the idiots who believe that the LIEberals actually did something astounding by downloading the cost of federally mandated services to lower forms of government (without the money to support them) and then claiming that they were fiscally responsible and brought the deficit down.

    Gosh, I can transfer my debts to Vern, and that hate filled Mike Sty character and then claim I was fiscally resonsible in managing my debt too.

    Since the 2 of you are such wonderful proponents of this strategy, perhaps you would be so kind as to oblige me?
  84. Kenneth Yurchuk from Canada writes: Don Adams, the Centrist Conservative from Canada writes: This recession is actually a GOOD thing...going to smarten up a lot of people re ridiculous use of credit, paying cash as you go, and the value of saving for the future. Traditional Conservative values! :-)

    And, the more people hurt, the better they'l learn!
    _______________________________________________________

    Whippings will continue until morale improves...

    Donnie, this is fallacious logic even by your standards. All except for the part about 'traditional Conservative values'

    They'll learn not to trust the CPC for another couple of generations, I suppose. Every cloud has a silver lining...
  85. Brandan Matchett from Halifax, Canada writes: How does Iggy get himself out of this one?

    He has to support the budget. He has no choice. If he doesn't he goes to the polls with no money in his parties accounts.

    Bluff calling time is tomorrow, the wait won't be long.
  86. Kublah Khan from Canada writes: Canada's 'New Government' has brought us a 'New Canada'!
  87. garry heaps from Canada writes: darth sidious returns to ottawa and this time he has changed.
    really changed. seriously.

    i wonder if the 'exalted one' will see his large shadow when he crawls out of his burrow.

    will the newbies remember how to get to the hoc?

    how will parliamentarian's react to a six month vacation?
  88. Kerry H from Ordinary, Canada writes: 'We have grown-ups running the budget process,' a senior government official told The Globe and Mail yesterday on condition of remaining unidentified by name. 'There will be no juvenile political games.'

    And the timely release of all their goodies were what, if not juvenile political games....
  89. NL Patriot from Republic of Newfoundland, Canada writes: lord cross of Blacks Harbour from BLACKS HARBOUR NB, Canada writes:
    NL Patriot from Republic of Newfoundland, Canada writes:

    What assets did Taxpayers gain in the $75 Billion Bank of Canada support for 'low down-payment, 40-year term mortgages?'

    When the mortgagee is unemployed, or simply 'walks' because the market value of the property has declined sharply, who gets to enjoy the 'spoils?'

    -------

    As I understand it and as was reported all of the mortgages the Government purchased were insured by CMHC. Therefore the government was on the hook if the owners defaulted anyway. So by assuming these martgages the government atleast has the properties after the fact and can sell them. As for the declining value of property in Canada I think the average is about 6%. I know it is higher in some places but in some markets like mine the value continues to climb by a significant margin. Property values in my area are expected to increase by another 20% in 2009 after increasing every year since 2001.
  90. paul y from Mississauga, Canada writes: Thanks for the comments! I like to take this opportunity to expand on my green tech/energy comments: 1. Biomass - there are some huge opport. to generate energy from waste. 2. Electric Cars - this is another area or hybrid cars, but you need to have the support structure 3. Biodiesel/Ethanol - alternative fuels, plus are already mandated to be a key part of gasoline. 4. Corn-to-Plastic - We can take corn and make into plastic, which means it will biodegradeable. There is an organization called SDTC, which provides grants to new green tech/energy companies. This government agency has been very successful with helping startup companies with bridge loans. The green area is the next wave of job creation. The old brick and mortar businesses have been slowing cutting back and that is inevitable in a mature market. I have been in finance for years and can tell you that tax cuts do help, because it makes us more competitive which in turn can help with job creation and business investment. Remember gvmt can't create jobs itself, but can create an environment favourable to job creation. So, some of the initiatives in the budget will help with this process. As for infrastructure, it is bad shape of repair. People forget that Paul Martin balance the budgets by reducing the trfr payments to the provs. The Feds never put much emphasis on infrastructure and now we are seeing the repercussions of their actions. Some of these projects can be started immediatley, which will help the constr ind. and will also help put the cities in a good position when the economy recovers. As for those people around corp cuts and against them like Layton. I can tell you that Canadian companies need help with competing and want a fair system. Jack Layton never worked in businss so he doesn't know what it takes to compete. Iggy wrote books, so may be he should go back be an author. As for McCallum he should go back and take an accounting 101 course before he makes comments.
  91. Martyn Whitt from Canada writes: Maybe after all this spending is announced in the budget there will be a little line near the end that proposes and end to to funding of political parties at the federal level. That would really stick it to the Liberal Party, after all this spending has been announced I can only dream-however I doubt it will be reality.

    If I were a strategists that's what I'd advise, add in all this spending as per the wishes of the Liberals but then take away the political party funding, put the spotlight on the Liberals and watch them squirm.
  92. Crazy Canuck from Canada writes: The elitist and international bankers are laughing at Canadians. Dumb down society. Canadians think that they have a choice during an election where in fact they have control of all political parties.

    The elitist and international bankers would like to see the Canadian Government go into deficit in the tune of 64 Billion. The interest alone will make them rich and drive the middle class into poverty.

    One World Government...

    1984 - Ignorance is Knowledge
  93. North Star from Canada writes: No one was ever made accountable for Harper's previous budget fiasco and ministers now are getting on planes to leak budget details across the country while the budget printers are in a lock-up to prevent leaks.

    Harper cannot be trusted.
  94. lord cross of Blacks Harbour from BLACKS HARBOUR NB, Canada writes:
    Bob Dylan's Voice from Canada writes:

    'Harper would not have know that the markets were going from 15000 to 8000 and that the key tax paying companies were going from record profits to losses.'

    Chicken or Egg arguments won't work. What we are viewing is the cascade effect of sub prime mortgages, in the U.S., which in turn caused the loss of confidence and market decline. The earliest indications of the resulting market implosion appeared in Jul-Aug '07. Meanwhile, Canadian financiers were gathering at various points across the country in worshipful obeisance, after paying high lip-service fees to the author of de-regulation in the U.S.

    I'm sure if we do our due diligence in reviewing government mucky-muck expense reports, we'll find many government and Bank of Canada on the list of notables in attendance.
  95. I'm Stephen Harper and I'm not Lion from China writes: Don Adams, the Centrist Conservative from Canada writes:

    And, the more people hurt, the better
    ------------------

    This is the kind of talk you hear from terrorists.
  96. Mickey Hickey from Toronto, Canada writes: I am looking forward to hearing Harper/Flaherty as they try to disguise tax cuts for the well off as benefits for the poor and unemployed. The elusive moral philosopy that supports selfishness and greed, the holy grail of the Conservative base, will elude them once again.
  97. Brett Williams from Canada writes: 'Crusty Curmudgeon from Ottawa, Canada writes: It seems to me that the fundamental difference between CONServative supporters and LIEberal supporters is that the LIEberals believe that they have a God-given right to take my money and spend it on things that they believe are a priority (like their ad friends in Quebec).'

    BUT this conservative government has already spent more money then any other government in history, and that's before this new stimulas package. And the previous conservative government, Mulroney, also set the spending record at the time it was in power.

    IN fact that's the trend on provincial levels and in the US with republicans too.

    So where are you getting this BS about Libs spending more when the facts clearly show the opposite?
  98. North Star from Canada writes: 'There's a sense now that now's not the time for gimmicks,' said the Tory. 'We just have to appear serious at this stage. We can't appear to be poking our fingers in people's eyes.

    ------------------------------------

    Being serious is different than 'just have to appear serious'. An admission from the Harper government that its regular modus operandi is gimmicks and poking fingers in people's eyes.

    Harper cannot be trusted.
  99. I'm Stephen Harper and I'm not Lion from China writes: Harper team reveals plans of survival strategy
    -------------------

    Are they talking about the economy or Harpers team ???
  100. Martyn Whitt from Canada writes: Not much talk about the coalition here, I take it everybody is resigned to a few more years of PM Harper? What does Iggy do now? Where does he position the Liberal Party of Toronto? To the right of the Conservatives or further to the left over there with the NDP-so far left nobody takes them seriously again. Ahhhhhh, poor Iggy, poor Liberal supporters in Toronto and in the Anglais section of Montreal and poor Liberal supporter outside of Toronto
  101. Roger Cooper from Canada writes: The PMO has been converted to a command bunker by this government, which is one of the reasons they are floundering. The other is the commander.
  102. Percy from NL from Canada writes: Attack ads launched against the opposition and using the taxpayer's $64 billion burden to make country-wide campaign-style announcements; oh yeah, now there's a strong move away from partisanship and immature games.

    These Harper Conservatives are like a group of people outside your house trying to burn it down all the while shouting 'we have no bad intentions, we have no bad intentions'. No of course there are always a few out on the street that are gullible enough to believe them. They of course would equate to Harper supporters in this case.
  103. Billy Bee from Lobbiest Rule Canada!!!, Canada writes: Crusty Curmudgeon from Ottawa, Canada writes: 'It seems to me that the fundamental difference between CONServative supporters and LIEberal supporters is that the LIEberals believe that they have a God-given right to take my money and spend it on things that they believe are a priority (like their ad friends in Quebec).'

    Really? Is this why Harper is going to put us ALL in debt to the tune of $64 BILLION? How did we go from record surpluses to record deficits? Nothing to do with vote buying, eh?

    Then why did Harper throw $900 million at Quebec and told Ontario to pound sand? More vote buying if you ask me.

    And why did Harper have record spending budgets and increase the size of Cabinet?

    Sorry, Harper spends like a drunk sailor and you think the Liberals are bad? You're right, they were. But Harper is going to be the ruin if Canada if we keep this clown around....
  104. CR VAN KRALINGEN from PORT COLBORNE, Canada writes: From the article;.....''We have grown-ups running the budget process,' a senior government official told The Globe and Mail yesterday on condition of remaining unidentified by name. 'There will be no juvenile political games.''

    Is this not what we were expecting in all cases. If anyone in business would be operating this way they would not last a year. I would terminate anyone that was working for me if they acted this way. Sadly our politicians are in the game for self preservation only. and we will continue to suffer until we stand up and say ENOUGH!

    We are in deep trouble and need to make some 'right/ good' decisions.

    I say;.....
    raise the GST back to 7%
    focus stimulus spending only on items that will maximise the intended result.
    tighten our belts where needed

    Harper has failed;....the opposition leaves something to be desired.

    AAAAAAAAAHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!
  105. NL Patriot from Republic of Newfoundland, Canada writes: Mickey Hickey from Toronto, Canada writes: I am looking forward to hearing Harper/Flaherty as they try to disguise tax cuts for the well off as benefits for the poor and unemployed. The elusive moral philosopy that supports selfishness and greed, the holy grail of the Conservative base, will elude them once again.

    --------

    Mickey is this indeed supposed to be a stimulus then tax cuts for the middle class (the well off) are essential. Why the hell should I pay now and more later to support people who don't support me.

    Unless there is something in this budget for the middle class then it is nothing more than a big welfare scheme and will do nothing to help the economy inprove but actually have the opposite effect of giving short term financial help to people that when it runs out will be back in the same position. Mean while the middle class as usual gets stuck with the bill
  106. Al Bore from Canada writes:
    Here is how it will all go down tomorrow.

    1. The Conservatives will table a budget with something for everyone.

    2. The NDP will fake outrage that it's not enough

    3. The BLOC will threaten to take down the government

    4, Iggy and the Liberals will say it's a budget we can live with, and repeat the fact that Canadians don't want an election.

    The Budget Passes
  107. Vern McPherson from Canada writes:
    John Connor from Canada writes: Robin Hannah from Canada writes: Canada needs a reminder, though maybe times have changed - but please beware, my fellow Canadians. Smilin Jim Flaherty and Mike Harris, and other current Harper cronies, were the guys who stuck it to the poor and the working-class of Ontario during the 90s, and Ontario has never been the same since.
    -----------------------------------------------
    And fence-sitter McGuinty finished the job with his 'health premium'. Did you have a point, or were you simply blowing smoke?
    Posted 26/01/09 at 6:29 AM EST | Alert an Editor | Link to Comment

    ================================

    Being a fundamentalist ideologically driven dummy who ignores facts at all costs johnny you wouldn't know the poor and low income earners in Ontario do not pay the health premium.
  108. MyCanada MyLove from Canada writes: :

    [[[ Don Adams, the Centrist Conservative says ... I know one youg lady, got herself 3 degrees.... so stressed out, poor dear, after getting her 3rd degree...she needed a holiday! Yepper...Daddy paid. Girl sets off ... met a British Gov't embassy employee in India, and is getting married....in an Indian ceremony! Hopes Mommy and Daddy can come.! Did I yet mention Mommy and Daddy had to mortgage the house to the hilt to pay for everything they did for darling daughter? Unfortunately, stories like this are all too common. Posted 26/01/09 at 7:19 AM EST ]]]

    When I read comment like your's, unlike you, I am thankful I am a progressive. I know the sacrifices and hardships of putting oneself through university. Scholarships and bursaries for deserving students
    help. I am against student loans and therefore believe parents must at least assist their child/ren with first year ... following years is up to them.

    Success based on academic achievement should be much like success in
    business. In business one succeed with vision, sacrifice, grit, and preferably some seed financing.


    .
  109. R. Carriere from Maritimes, Canada writes:

    This Conservative government appears to be anything but 'conservative' bar a few ideological 'moments.' They have fell hook, line, and sinker from this American 'Media generated panic of 09' and the opposition socialist demands.

    During past recessions we had unemployment levels of 12%-14% with interest rates of 15%-20% and large inflation. The last levels of unemployment announced was 6.6% with predictions of 8%-very low interest rates for the foreseeable future, and almost zero inflation!

    One error that the CPC made was NOT releasing the budgeted infrastructure money during the last 2 years. That would have eased the labour unemployment certainly in the construction sector that has been hit hard.

    Ontario manufacturing sector? That problem has been brewing for 10 years with the outsourcing to the far east.

    Throw in the NA automobile decrease in market demand and the problem is evident. No Provincial or Fedreal government over the last 20 years has 'set the table' to foster a more diverse economy -hence this eventuality. Imagine, the automotive sector represents a whopping 22% of exports to the USA--the USA represents 76% of total Canadian exports!
    .
  110. Billy Bee from Canada writes: Kenneth Yurchuk from Canada writes: 'Donnie, this is fallacious logic even by your standards. All except for the part about 'traditional Conservative values'

    Don't worry about Don. In his mind he still thinks the CPC won a majority...
  111. Percy from NL from Canada writes: Martyn Whitt from Canada

    Ignatieff's biggest problem is that Harper has likely gone too far to the left with this budget in his desperate attempt to satisfy Ignatieff and cling to power. But then as Harper would ask, 'what's so big about Conservative principles when I would either have to pass the CPC over to another leader or get my a-- kicked by Ignatieff?'

    So for Mr. Harper it's bye bye to the ideology of his strongest grassroot supporters. I can't wait to see the polls over the next week or two.
  112. Liberal logic is an oxymoron from Canada writes: On The Current this morning. Will Ignatieff's past catch up with him. And when it does what will that mean for him and the Liberal party's relationship with the Obama administration. For instance if Iggy and Obama are closer in idealogy than Harper and Obama are, then when Obama asks us to stay 'just a little bit longer' in Afghanistan will a Prime Minister Ignatieff say no? I guess we'll have to wait and see on that score. Michael, there's a knock at the door. It's the past wanting to pay you a visit.
  113. lord cross of Blacks Harbour from BLACKS HARBOUR NB, Canada writes:
    Martyn Whitt from Canada writes:

    Alright, let's assume you run your bluff. Who do you think will receive credit for this loss of fiscal control?

    The Option of a Coalition is still on the horizon. Do Harper / Flairity still think they have the upper hand?

    'Scuse the wet soapy epilogue ... I'm writing the CONservative eulogy / epitaph in the bathtub, just like Byron of Muldoon and Alan Greenspan did.
  114. Henry Bollingbroke from Ottawa, Canada writes: My favourite line from the Tory official was this one:

    'We just have to appear serious at this stage. We can't appear to be poking our fingers in people's eyes.'

    In other words... we don't ACTUALLY have to be serious and we don't ACTUALLY have to stop poking our fingers in people's eyes... we just can't APPEAR to be doing these things.
  115. Shawn Bull from Canada writes: You can never say Harper is a stupid politician. He knows how to get his message out and protect a government in a minority.

    I look forward to seeing the details of the budget although I liked the Conservativees original plan of not spending as it will not help in time for this current downturn. The threat of a coalition cost Canada $64 billion over two years and that did't need to happen.

    That being said now that the government is forced to spend I am glad it is the Conservatives and not the tax and spend Liberals.
  116. Martyn Whitt from Canada writes: Al Bore your prediction is likely.

    I'd still like to see them stick the line in about ending political party financing that would add a huge twist your dull prediction (truthful but dull).
  117. John Hertz from Canada writes: 'There's a sense now that now's not the time for gimmicks,' said the Tory. 'We just have to appear serious at this stage. We can't appear to be poking our fingers in people's eyes.'

    *******

    What a statement!! 'We just have to APPEAR to be serious' !!!

    Do you people really think that the Conservative Party is any more competent than they were in November?

    The Conservative Party is too incompetent to run the country.
  118. Percy from NL from Canada writes: Liberal logic is an oxymoron from Canada

    Interesting moniker given your logic that Ignatieff has some things in similar to that of Harper in his past which should be used against him. Hmmm?
  119. NL Patriot from Republic of Newfoundland, Canada writes: I hope the opposition defeats this budget. Then I hope the GG calls an election so that we can get this mess cleaned up.

    I don't think this spending is going to do anything to stimulate the economy. All it is going to do is increase the debt burden and the burden on the middle class with the responsibility to pay it off. Yes the down trodden will get a few shackles here and there but when that runs out they will still be down trodden. What do we do then? Another 64 Billion in welfare payments?

    Down with this budget!!
  120. Mark Dip from Canada writes: With an unemployment rate four times the national average, the spouses of Canadian government employees serving overseas lose over $1 million per year from being forced to pay for EI overseas while being ineligible for benefits. The way it goes is that spouses quit their jobs to accompany their partner, but are still forced to pay EI premiums overseas because CRA defines them as Canadian “Factual Residents” due to diplomatic status, but then they later get their EI social benefits revoked afterward because HRSDC says they’re not “Residents in Canada”. This administrative Catch-22 also extends to disallowing these spouses from being able to claim education expenses on their taxes – even if they take Canadian courses from overseas. This also happens to non-government spouses whose residency is classified this way by CRA. Who’s to guess we’ll be shut out once again on this EI retraining initiative?
  121. Billy Bee from Canada writes: R. Carriere from Maritimes, Canada writes: 'No Provincial or Fedreal government over the last 20 years has 'set the table' to foster a more diverse economy -hence this eventuality.'

    100% correct. Harper is just the latest PM to maintain the status quo on the economy. The same can be said with pretty much everythign else (environment, social issues, infrastructure, etc.) Why? Because its easy!

    In Canada we DO NOT have leaders - we have politicians! They're only interested in having their 15 minutes of fame happen constantly - and getting the pension and connections once they're out of office.

    What's the difference between a politician and a carp? One is a scum sucking bottom feeder, the other one is a fish!
  122. North Star from Canada writes: There's a sense now that now's not the time for gimmicks said the Tory, We just have to appear serious at this stage. We can't appear to be poking our fingers in people's eyes.

    ----------------------------

    Instead of being serious, the Torys just want to appear to be serious as their normal modus operandi is, they admit, gimmicks and poking people in the eye.

    Harper cannot be trusted.
  123. North Star from Canada writes: Harper's legacy will be the largest structural deficit in Canadian history.
  124. Martyn Whitt from Canada writes: Percy from NL from Canada writes: Martyn Whitt from Canada Ignatieff's biggest problem is that Harper has likely gone too far to the left with this budget in his desperate attempt to satisfy Ignatieff and cling to power. But then as Harper would ask, 'what's so big about Conservative principles when I would either have to pass the CPC over to another leader or get my a-- kicked by Ignatieff?' So for Mr. Harper it's bye bye to the ideology of his strongest grassroot supporters. I can't wait to see the polls over the next week or two. ================ You forget that west of Ontario save for Vancouver and Victoria will never vote Liberal for the next 20 years, the grassro0ts support is a given
  125. NL Patriot from Republic of Newfoundland, Canada writes: John Hertz from Canada writes: 'There's a sense now that now's not the time for gimmicks,' said the Tory. 'We just have to appear serious at this stage. We can't appear to be poking our fingers in people's eyes.' ******* What a statement!! 'We just have to APPEAR to be serious' !!! Do you people really think that the Conservative Party is any more competent than they were in November? The Conservative Party is too incompetent to run the country. ------ John the reason thay have to appear to be serious is because they don't beleive in this big spending package. Jack Layton has been saying this for weeks. He says the coalition should be the ones to control this spending because the Conservatives don't really beleive in it and won't follow through with it. Man for once in my life I hope Layton is right and the Cons don't follow through on this terrible spending spree. I would rather lower taxes and have moderate spending on some projects that put people to work. The people who are unemployed can go on EI and when try and find a job. Please don't spend us into oblivion, please coalition defeat the government so we can have an election
  126. lord cross of Blacks Harbour from BLACKS HARBOUR NB, Canada writes:
    Shawn Bull from Canada writes:

    'I look forward to seeing the details of the budget although I liked the Conservativees original plan of not spending as it will not help in time for this current downturn. The threat of a coalition cost Canada $64 billion over two years and that did't need to happen.'

    I haven't been able to decide whether you're mildly or wildly delusional. What were Harper / Flairity going to do with the gathered and gathering unemployed? How were they going to engage this most serious crisis and deal with public unrest?

    Blaming the coalition for the crisis and resultant spending is nothing less than insanity. I think it's time for you to commission a proctologist to have your head checked.
  127. Mack The Knife from Brandon, Canada writes: I'm confused because I understand that Flaherty is the finance minister but I gather that he may have been superseded by two other gentlemen that have been promoted, presumably, to work on the budget process but really are being set up to take the fall This I can accept but now along comes Paul Y from Mississauga who writes 'I have emphasized to my MP. and to the Minister of Finance where I would like the money to be spent.' Then he states'You will see money spent for the following: Infrastructure , support to Canadian manufacturers,alternate fuels (green tech),social housing,income tax cuts,health care,as well as UIC programs. These are two very declarative statements and would indicate some kind of insider knowledge that it would appear, he should not be party to and of course should not be breaking the rule of secrecy which was deemed necessary to prevent any untoward use of the budget information. In previous and similar circumstances Ministers.with integrity, have found it necessary to resign but that kind of honorable action will not likely obtain in these circumstances.
  128. Martyn Whitt from Canada writes: NL Patriot from Republic of Newfoundland, Canada writes: I hope the opposition defeats this budget. Then I hope the GG calls an election so that we can get this mess cleaned up.

    I don't think this spending is going to do anything to stimulate the economy. All it is going to do is increase the debt burden and the burden on the middle class with the responsibility to pay it off. Yes the down trodden will get a few shackles here and there but when that runs out they will still be down trodden. What do we do then? Another 64 Billion in welfare payments?

    Down with this budget!!

    ================

    You are talking real sense NL Patriot.
  129. AJA M from Canada writes: The article states - 'It was a far cry, said one provincial bureaucrat, from last year when Mr. Flaherty advised international investors that Ontario was one of the worst places in the world to invest.' How has this guy changed? Cannot see what he or Harper has done to trust either of them. This information control on pre-budget elements clearly indicate that we should not trust this band of politicians. Harper should go away along with his Finance Minister and join the Mike Harris 'silent' group.
  130. North Star from Canada writes: Shawn Bull from Canada writes: You can never say Harper is a stupid politician.

    -----------------------

    Yes you can: Harper is a stupid politician who had to hide behind the skirts of the GG due to his political miscalculations.

    If Harper had never broken his own fixed date election law, he would still be enjoying a virtual majority against the weakest LPC leader in Canadian history, free to pass and spend what and where he pleases. As a result, Harper has forfeited control of the parliamentary agenda and is beholden to the opposition as his poll numbers plummet.

    Harper is a stupid politician.
  131. Jason Roy from Central Nova - After October 14th AKA STILL Peter Mackay Country, Canada writes: NL Patriot from Republic of Newfoundland, Canada writes:

    I hope the opposition defeats this budget. Then I hope the GG calls an election so that we can get this mess cleaned up.

    -------------------------------------

    I hope the budget is defeated as well just so I can watch those now calling for the government's downfall turn do a reversal and stand up and applaud when Iggy brings in an identical budget...
  132. John Bennett from Norwood, Canada writes: If Iggy can induce the government to put a moderately effective stimulus package together, why would he then defeat the government and inherit the ensuing deficit? Much better to have your cake and eat it too. Having the Conservatives standing as the party that blew a surplus when they took government and turned it into one of the largest deficits is not a bad place to be for the Liberals when the next election comes around.
  133. NL Patriot from Republic of Newfoundland, Canada writes: lord cross of Blacks Harbour from BLACKS HARBOUR NB, Canada writes:I haven't been able to decide whether you're mildly or wildly delusional. What were Harper / Flairity going to do with the gathered and gathering unemployed? How were they going to engage this most serious crisis and deal with public unrest?

    Blaming the coalition for the crisis and resultant spending is nothing less than insanity. I think it's time for you to commission a proctologist to have your head checked

    -------

    What I think is insane is spending Billions of dollars on people who are unemployed (even though they don't qualify for EI). At the end of the day they will likely still be unemployed and the money will be gone. What do we do then give them more?

    I hope the coalition defeats this crazy budget so we can have an election and try and inject some sanity into this insane spending spree.
  134. Kenneth Yurchuk from Canada writes: One error that the CPC made was NOT releasing the budgeted infrastructure money during the last 2 years. That would have eased the labour unemployment certainly in the construction sector that has been hit hard.
    _______________________________________________________

    I absolutely agree with you an this point Rob. 33 billion has been sitting around for quite a while, already budgetted but never spent. These municipal projects would be under way now when they are needed, and instead we'll waste more time.

    On your comment on unemployment rates, please note that the US economy contracted by 5% in the last quarter. That is an incredibly huge number. Even with to-days methods of understating unemployment, the US will be well into double digit unemployment soon if they aren't already. Canada will follow.

    This may be a made in the media panic, but it's a panic nonetheless. These things have a way of getting out of control...
  135. Scott Wicks from Canada writes:
    I think the big question here is whether anybody in Ottawa or anywhere else in Canada actually believes Harper and Flaherty.

    How do we know that Harper will actually do any of the things that Canadians want him to do? How we know that the cheque will ever get put in the mail?

    Right-wingers cheered Harper on wildly during the last three years while he flouted the rules and conventions and governed by abuse of process. The first time the little dictator got smacked in the face he ran crying to momma and hid behind the same rules that he normally ignores.

    Can we trust Harper? The man is demonstrably a liar, a bully, and a hypocrite. Right now the Reform Party will say and do anything to avoid being kicked out of power. This entire fiasco is a complete failure of leadership and a complete failure of Steve Harper and still all he can do is play silly games.

    The Liberals and the NDP really have no choice.

    Let's have a big round of applause for Steven Harper for bringing Canada to this new low point.
  136. North Star from Canada writes: Flaherty has been demoted from Finance Minister to House Budget Speech Reader.
  137. Stude Ham from Canada writes:
    85B$ burned in the banks' trash bins... more B$ burned over heaven knows what...

    this is not a budget... it's a plan for the vancouver olympics... vintage flakerty...

    DUMP HARPER!

  138. Shawn Bull from Canada writes: lord cross of Blacks Harbour from BLACKS HARBOUR NB, Canada writes:
    Shawn Bull from Canada writes:

    I haven't been able to decide whether you're mildly or wildly delusional. What were Harper / Flairity going to do with the gathered and gathering unemployed? How were they going to engage this most serious crisis and deal with public unrest?
    -----------------------------------

    How to deal with the gathering unemployment....not dumping billions into projects where the majority of the projects can not even begin before the end of 2009. By then the economy will start to become stronger as it heals itself.

    The Conservatives are tabling a budget that is big because the coalition was going to over throw them and produce their own large stimulus package.

    The rest of you post is just insults so I'll pass on responding to that.
  139. Evelyn Campbell from Canada writes: Don Adams: Your friends who kept paying for their daughter's education is their problem. When I graduated from h.s. you could work in the summer and save your tuition and part of your living expenses. Most summer jobs now won't even cover your tuition. It is a person's duty as a parent to help your children get their education. In these times a good job is hard to get if you don't have some post secondary training.

    Did you not have a nice weekend, you sound grumpy this a.m. You sound like you are honestly enjoying the idea that some people's finances are in a mess. Do you need a coffee with a dash of love (aka kahlua) in it?
  140. Kam Fong As Chin Ho from Bermuda writes: Prime Minister Stephen Harper's former communications director Geoff Norquay registered to lobby the federal government on industry, finance and environment issues for J.D. Irving, Duke Energy, Alcan Inc., Shell Canada Ltd., Suncor Energy Inc., and TransAlta Corp;

    Goldy Hyder, a former chief of staff to Joe Clark and conservative strategist, registered to lobby the federal government on behalf of organizations including Pfizer Canada, Talisman Energy and Rio Tinto PLC.

    Tim Powers, a communications advisor during the 2006 election campaign, registered to lobby on behalf of Oracle, CN Rail and CTV GlobeMedia.

    William Pristanski, former executive assistant to Prime Minister Brian Mulroney and chair of Peter McKay's leadership campaign, registered to lobby the federal government on behalf of organizations including Archers Daniels Midland Company, Canada's Research-Based Pharmaceutical Companies Rx&D, and Wal-Mart Canada.

    Within months of forming government almost 50 former Conservative staffers registered as lobbyists. All of this happened under a Prime Minister who, while in opposition, was a relentless critic of the 'revolving door' between government and lobbyists.

    cont.
  141. MBguy s from Canada writes: Yes, tomorrow, the budget gets read. And if the Libs want to take over and their bank accounts are in $0????????????? Yes they really no how to raise funds for their party......rolmao..................Yes let them come up with a new budget!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ROLMAO....................
  142. Kam Fong As Chin Ho from Bermuda writes: 'My friends, and I'm serious about this, politics will no longer be a stepping stone to a lucrative career lobbying government. Make no mistake, if there are MPs in this room who want to use public office for their own benefit or if there are Hill staffers who dream of making it rich by trying to lobby a future Conservative government, if that's true of any of you, then you'd better make different plans or leave.'

    'Second, we are going to crackdown on the revolving door between ministers' offices, the senior public service, and the lobbying industry. We will ban all former ministers, ministerial staffers, or senior public officials from lobbying government for five years. We will require all ministers and senior officials to record their contacts with lobbyists. And we will make sure that there are real teeth and real penalties to enforce the Lobbyist Registration Act.' (Stephen Harper, Accountability Act Speech, November 4, 2005)

    To learn more about Conservative lobbyists go the Office of the Commissioner of Lobbying of Canada at: http://www.ocl-cal.gc.ca/epic/site/lobbyist-lobbyiste1.nsf/Intro
  143. NL Patriot from Republic of Newfoundland, Canada writes: Jason Roy from Central Nova - After October 14th AKA STILL Peter Mackay Country, Canada writes: I hope the budget is defeated as well just so I can watch those now calling for the government's downfall turn do a reversal and stand up and applaud when Iggy brings in an identical budget...

    ------

    I don't care who is bringing in this budget, I am against it. WE have watched the Americans and the Europeans pump hundreds of Billions of dollars into their economies and what happened? Nothing!

    What happend was it didn't work so then what do they decide to do....hundreds of Billions more! Is that going to work? Not likely.

    All they are doing is spending to make it look like they are trying to rescue the public when in reality they are creating a deficit and debt burdon that we can never climb out of.

    The biggest farce of this whole thing is that belief that the unemployed factory workers are somehow going to get retrained and come to the rescue of the country. Give me a break!
  144. lord cross of Blacks Harbour from BLACKS HARBOUR NB, Canada writes:
    Kenneth Yurchuk from Canada writes:

    'One error that the CPC made was NOT releasing the budgeted infrastructure money during the last 2 years. That would have eased the labour unemployment certainly in the construction sector that has been hit hard.'

    Only a small portion of infrastructure money has been doled out to this point. In the lead-up to the last election, Loyola Hearn's constituency received money for sewer main replacement, which was identified as a GREEN PROJECT. It's all a matter of terminology to the CONservatives; flippant words, total incompetence, and a sheer lack of will to govern in the interest of Canadians.
  145. Peter Kells from Bytown, Canada writes: And so yet again Mr. Harper appears to be missing an opportunity to show leadership in the face of a national and international economic crisis. This budget exercise is taking on the appearance of a cornered animal doing anything in order to survive. Instead of addressing real concerns, it is all politics all the time. This pre-release of this budget is a slap in the face to parliament. The Canadian political tradition is for the Minister of Finance to present a budget to Parliament. Now we have the situation where a desperate Government is out selling the budget (and controlling what is released and how) rather than presenting the document to their parliamentary peers. Consequently, the budget process has become an exercise in political manipulation.

    I fail to see how yet even more manipulation will result in any sense of a working Parliament. This 'budget' is just a political election exercise. Even in times of crisis, the New Government of Canada is incapable of governing and showing leadership - all that they can do is play more political games.
  146. Shivas Irons from Qualicium Beach, Canada writes: Grown ups running the budget process!!!! Who, or what did we have before? This budget will resemble the US model with few home grown ideas. The PM has very few options available to him. Unfortunately we hired the wrong guy who has placed the wrong people in the wrong jobs. Lets quit the whinning, give the PM a year or so and when the world economy begins to turn unload him and move on. When the Canadian voters look back on this PM the question will be ' WHAT WERE WE THINKING'.
  147. john s from Canada writes: It appears that after 3years of a Conservative Government, that it has become a training course for Steven Harper and Jim Flaherty. Two months ago the attitude was denial of the economic problems facing the country and confrontational to the civil servants and the Opposition.

    The country wants leadership, not a government engaged in playing partisan political politics, so their jobs can survive. Perpetual public relations and imagine rebuilding is not leadership.
  148. John Connor from Canada writes: Vern McPherson from Canada writes: Being a fundamentalist ideologically driven dummy who ignores facts at all costs johnny you wouldn't know the poor and low income earners in Ontario do not pay the health premium.
    -----------------------------------------------
    Unlike you Vern, I am still fortunate enough to earn a living and have not been forced onto the dole or been downsized. Yes, I am one of the few 'lucky' middle class than get to pay this tax. It's not a premium, premium suggests value for money. The last time I visited a emergency room for assistance, I waited 9 hours with a blown disc. So excuse me for being middle class Vern, but I'm sick and tired of being taken for granted.
  149. Wilma Guywin from Allover Canada, Canada writes: Coalition Economic Stimulus Package economic stimulus package designed to boost the domestic economy beginning with (but not limited to): - Accelerating existing infrastructure funding and substantial new investments, including municipal and inter-provincial projects (such as - transit, - Housing construction and retrofitting; and - Investing in key sector strategies (like manufacturing, forestry and automotive) . Facilitate skills training to help ensure Canadian - Amend the current law establishing a new crown corporation for employment insurance in order to guarantee that all revenue from EI premiums provides benefits and training for workers. Eliminate the current two week waiting period; - Lower the minimum required RRIF withdrawal for 2008 by 50 per cent; - Reform bankruptcy and insolvency laws to better protect pensions; and - Implement an income support program for older workers who have lost their jobs in order to help them make the transition from work to receiving retirement benefits. Other Priorities to Stimulate the Economy - Support for culture, including the cancellation of budget cuts announced by the Conservative government. - Support for Canadian Wheat Board and Supply Management - Immigration Reform - Reinstate regional development agency funding to non-profit economic development organizations. Families As finances permit, we are committed to moving forward with improved child benefits and an early learning and childcare program in partnership with each province, and respectful of their role and jurisdiction, including the possibility to opt out with full compensation.
  150. P Martin from St. John's, Canada writes: It appears Harper has learned nothing. Not surprising - it is all about him. Get rid of him.
  151. The Real PS from Canada writes: L Patriot from Republic of Newfoundland, Canada writes: The biggest farce of this whole thing is that belief that the unemployed factory workers are somehow going to get retrained and come to the rescue of the country. Give me a break!
    .
    L, you're missing the point behind the budget, the intent is to pump enough money into various programs that the consumer will start to rebuild his/her confidence as they will think they have hope if they do get laid off.
    .
    That way, people will start to spend again and the economy will recover.
    .
    This recession, in Canada, is 100% as a result of the media beating the cr@p out of consumer confidence.
  152. Wilma Guywin from Allover Canada, Canada writes: The key phrase of the coalition stimulus package is (but not limited to)

    Wonder how much this would cost?
  153. george erfle from turner valley, Canada writes: I am appling for Jack layton's job

    I mean:

    I do nothing of importance

    I talk alot about nothing

    I make no real change to nothing

    I create a lot of nothing, and put it right up the A** of Canada in the process

    And I get paid a great deal, get a paid pension from the ones I put it to.

    What a job, again I am appling!!!
  154. Red Suspenders from The Big Chair, writes: Spend spend spend spend spend spend spend spend spend!

    Tory deficit tory deficit tory deficit tory deficit tory deficit.

    Again and again and again and again and again and again.
  155. Cameron Jantzen from Halifax, Canada writes: Martyn Whitt, off topic, but I like the financing. It's based on votes. It in a small way takes money out politics. The Liberals did us a big favour by cutting off their nose and ending corporate donations. That rich people get say, and poor people don't, because they don't have money to give, is still an issue. There is also the issue of the Bloc's concentration of votes allowing their financing dollars to work harder, but you can't argue it's not democratic. You could say the same for Alberta and the Conservatives.
  156. David Bakody from Dartmouth, Canada writes: Some are starting to get it most are not! .....once again where did Harper spend our money? The economy will not recover any time soon read this .... add to this 86% of Americans say they will pay down debt first then save ...... how about you? I know I am part of that 86% ...... So where did Harper spend over $100 Billion and if he did that and we are tanking what will another $64 Billion do?

    NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- Economists expect an already deep recession to get even worse in 2009, according to a survey released Monday.

    Companies will lay off more workers and hoard more cash during the next 12 months, according to the National Association for Business Economics survey, a quarterly take from a panel of economists at private-sector companies in various industries. A vast majority of the 105 economists polled believe the country's gross domestic product will continue to sink in 2009.
  157. lord cross of Blacks Harbour from BLACKS HARBOUR NB, Canada writes:
    Do CONservatives know how to spend money? Yeppir, Yeppir, that be a certainty, milords and miladies.

    Province spends $4.3M a year to operate fleet

    'Alberta's taxpayer-funded aircraft fleet flew empty about 230 times in 2008.

    The planes logged more than 65,000 kilometres without passengers, the equivalent of flying around the world one and a half times.

    Alberta government flight manifests, available online, show the four aircraft continue to rack up so-called 'deadhead,' or empty flights, while ferrying cabinet ministers, MLAs and the lieutenant-governor around the province.'

    Having spent time in a foundry in my younger years, the term 'deadhead' [ i e someone incapable of coherent thought ] does somehow seem appropriate to the current government in Ottawa. I'm just waiting for someone from 'The Berta' to tell me to come and jump in their McSludge 140 sq. km. tailings pond, which can be seen from space.
  158. If I had a million lobsters from canbabwe, Canada writes: Here's a concept, instead of just throwing money willy nilly and hoping it sticks somewhere why doesn't the govt think about other alternatives.

    1. Reduce the govt labor force to reflect the new economy. i.e. match layoffs of the private sector.
    2. let the bad businesses simply die (novel huh)
    3. Accept the fact that there isn't anything they can do to fix this. We live and die by the sword. Capitalism requires the birth adn death of companies. We are not letting the companies die. this means we have zombie companies who will continually be on the dole.
    4. Put money and tax incentives into R&D and let those companies with great ideas (RIM for example) build these ideas into strong busiensses which hire people.

    What is most troubling about this whole govt intervention issue is we are going to end with an economy driven by govt spending and welfare - not innovation and growth.

    these stimulus plans are artificial and will create long-term stability because we cant pay the bill forever.

    We are at the end of the business cycle. Period. It is time to clean the crap out. Yes it will hurt badly, but, think about it for a sec. Is it possible that depressions are a naturally occurring event that regulates economic systems and is required at certain intervals to stabilize economies and markets.

    I'm beginning to believe that they are.
  159. Stan L from Canada writes: I will repeat what I said on another post becuase I think it applies here as well. Over what I heard on the weekend, I hope Mr. Ignatieff votes down this budget (assuming that the budget is going in the vote-buying cash grab direction it's going now). It's clear that Harper doesn't have a clue and as per ususal, is using our own money to buy our votes in a strategically bankrupt spending bacchanalia.

    Will the Liberals welcome an election? In their state of cash flow, likely not but the truth is that they are only going to get donations from new voters if they do something to inspire confidence and instill the notion that they are the party of 'priciple and solutions' rather than politics.....scary gambit, but I think Canadians are starting to pay attention now and one-trick Harper is being revealed as the clueless fraud he is.
  160. Evelyn Campbell from Canada writes: Harper and Flaherty have made a huge mess of things. A kindergarten economist would have known in September that things were spinning out of control. Instead of facing up to it, we had a snap election, breaking Harper's own election law to try and get a majority before the bad news was widely known. The same two fools cannot even put together a decent economic statement and have precipitated a political storm. Now we are supposed to believe anything about this budget? No matter what it says can we trust them to enact it? I wouldn't bet on it.
  161. Percy from NL from Canada writes: Martyn Whitt from Canada writes:

    'You forget that west of Ontario save for Vancouver and Victoria will never vote Liberal for the next 20 years, the grassro0ts support is a given'

    ***************

    Thank you for making my point for me. You are correct, Harper is wiping his feet in those who are at the grassroots of his support. He expects they will be silent lambs as he trashes their political ideology. Clearly you think the same. But be careful, that sort of attitude and disrespect for supporters has gotten previous parties down to 2 seats in the past.
  162. Red Suspenders from The Big Chair, writes: diane marie from Canada writes: siren call:-- That comment in the middle of the article suggesting that Mr. Harper has been 'curtailed' was interesting. This sentence: 'Observers also say Mr. Harper's authority has been curbed, his agenda circumscribed and his instincts to attack Mr. Ignatieff curtailed.' By whom, one wonders.

    ==================

    Yes, that is very interesting.

    His 'authority curbed'!

    But ... but ... but ... he's the 'PM chosen by universal outcry of everyone in Canada' (tm).

    Who could curb his authority without it being completely undemocratic?

    .
  163. R. Carriere from Maritimes, Canada writes:

    Kenneth Yurchuk from Canada writes:
    On your comment on unemployment rates, please note that the US economy contracted by 5% in the last quarter. That is an incredibly huge number. Even with to-days methods of understating unemployment, the US will be well into double digit unemployment soon if they aren't already. Canada will follow.
    ------
    Morning JKY: One of the BIG unknown factors down south will be the economic reaction to the Obama $850 BILLION bailout plan and the second part of the $750 BILLION TARP bailout which will be another $375 BILLION.

    What is really concerning is what happens AFTER all this money is spent! The US federal govt. debt will be in the area of $15 TRILLION!! (not even calculating State and municipal debt) What if after the blip, the economy goes backwards again. Will lenders say ' Enough! No more!'
    .
  164. Dr. Glenn Marshall from Canada writes: STAY IN TURNER VALLEY GEORGE. YOUR COMMENTS ABOUT APPLYING FOR JACK LAYTON JOB ARE IDIOTIC.
  165. NL Patriot from Republic of Newfoundland, Canada writes: The Real PS from Canada writes: L, you're missing the point behind the budget, the intent is to pump enough money into various programs that the consumer will start to rebuild his/her confidence as they will think they have hope if they do get laid off.
    .
    That way, people will start to spend again and the economy will recover.
    .
    This recession, in Canada, is 100% as a result of the media beating the cr@p out of consumer confidence.

    --------

    You have to be joking. Who is going to do all this spending you are talking about? The people who are already defaulting on thier mortagages? The seniors who are just scraping by as it is? The people who have been unemployed their entire adult lives who are also going to be able to access these EI dollars?

    The only people in this country who can afford to spend are the middle and upper class. Here is a shocker....we haven't really stopped spending. We may have curtailed our spending a little but nothing out of the ordinary. We can only spend so much and with the threat of layoffs in every sector looming it will take more than a gigantic welfare package to make us spend more.
  166. Red Suspenders from The Big Chair, writes: David Blott from Dartmouth, NS, Canada writes:

    'There's a sense now that now's not the time for gimmicks,' said the Tory. 'We just have to appear serious at this stage. We can't appear to be poking our fingers in people's eyes.'

    Well that only took three years and the near loss of power for these guys to figure out.

    ===========================

    And it's still all about appearances for them!
  167. Harold Uhlman from Lunenburg, NS, writes: Going into deficit in this budget I expect is unavoidable to assist those than can be helped, and because of lack of preparation for the downturn, but more importantly for political reasons I also expect. This government was already going into deficit without the recession, about $12-13B by all accounts. The present stimulus package, which means deficit, is being used to cover the deficit the Conservatives had already run up. They did so by the 'greatest spending in history', by issuing a GST cut as an election ploy, not in preparation for any recession, and by never considering salting anything away for the rainy day. If a surplus was over taxation, then a deficit which they incurred before the recession must be under taxation. Now don't get me wrong. I do like less taxation, especially like the Liberals gave us from 1999-2005 ((4% cut in my income tax bracket and considerable increase in personal exemption). This government was simply ill prepared for the recesiion. To suggest they couldn't see it coming is nonsense. The rest of the world economies were tanking and as they say, we are not an island. Question -why was the election date law broken to force an election? Answer - to get in before the recession they knew was coming hit.
  168. A B from Canada writes: Guy Giorno replaced by Carl Rove.

    Things are not going well in CON-BORG Land.

    The knives are out to replace the Devil you idiots voted for.
  169. Gord Lewis from No Tory Like an Old Tory ..., Canada writes: Yikes! My BS detector went into full alarm before four short paragraphs of this story. 'Tories regroup' is a startling oxymoron for a one-man party.

    'We have grown-ups running the budget process,' a senior government official . . . well, that's reassuring!! But then who is minding the kids (like Baird, Flaherty)?? And just because they are experienced old men running 'the budget process' is no guarantee of anything -- they could be the same Mulcronies who mangled things so badly back in the 80s. We don't need more of that kind of 'experience'.

    ' ... the government wants to send a message that it has learned its lesson' This implies they are learning on the job.

    Anyway, thanks G&M for my morning belly-laugh. This could only be made funnier by adding a prognostication by Jeff Rubin (but who knows, he could be helping the CCRAPpers learn how to budget and babysit).
  170. Kevin Desmoulin from TO, Canada writes: Tories regroup, what else is new lol, time for Canada to regroup after this crew, I do not think it will pass.
  171. Flander Jones from Canada writes: There would be nothing wrong with the Liberals supporting the budget.

    Mr. Harper stays in power, oversees the largest deficit budget in Canadian history. The voters, completely battered by a recession take the first opportunity to punt the Conservatives, Mr. Harper's 'legacy'? The most controversial spendthrift in our history. A title he will have to live with for rest of his life. And for someone with his ideology it will be a cross of immense pain to bear. Karma sucks eh Mr. Harper?
  172. Red Suspenders from The Big Chair, writes: Neil Alexander from Oakville, Canada writes: ... a Liberal party that supports terrorist's and bringing them to Canada, ...

    =============

    What garbage. Grow a brain.
  173. M Liggins from Perth, Canada writes: Counterspinner - kudos on the 'No Defined Pupose'.
  174. Evelyn Campbell from Canada writes: Harold Uhlman from Lunenburg:

    Exactly, you hit it right on the head!
  175. Jake The Snake from Canada writes: Harper has changed? Yeah right, he's just been keeping it in his pants lately. He wants to pull it out, he needs to pull it out and will first chance he gets. This man can't change.

    I say he's picked up a little more from the Rove template these days. He's playing quiet and innocent while the underlings do all the smearing and yapping.

    Those con radio ads, the ones that are paid for by the loyal drones, are the height of cheeze. The radio actress with the annoyingly whiny voice saying, 'Remember all that talk about a coalition', making sure the Bloc is the first party mentioned even though they aren't a part of it, can you be any more transparent? Geeze, I better be careful or I might be invoking Godwin here. For fools and for suckers that's all there is to say. Money well spent? Well at least it's not my money, keep spending that war chest, great job!
  176. lord cross of Blacks Harbour from BLACKS HARBOUR NB, Canada writes: I have received a 'friendly note' from a wise advisor in U.S. fixed return investments. He recounts the following horror story: 5 Years of Interest Destroyed in 6 Weeks! 'Investors large and small, haughty and humble — Asian central bankers, mid-East sheiks, and retired Americans living on fixed income — all piled into Treasury bonds at the same time. And they all had a similar goal: To escape the terrifying dangers ... find what they thought was a safe haven ... and grasp for something — anything — better than the near-zero yields on short-term Treasury bills. Many reached out as far as they possibly could in maturity, buying the longest Treasury bond in existence — the 4.5% 'long bond' expiring May 15, 2038. But as the Treasury bond buying frenzy reached a crescendo on December 18 of last year, they didn't get the coupon yield of 4.5%. Instead, they had to pay such a high price for the bond, they wound up locked into the lowest Treasury-bond yield in history: A meager 2.52%! That was bad enough. But the saga of woes does not end there. The real disaster came with the events that have ensued since ... For each $10,000 in face value bonds, they paid an exorbitant $14,091. And now, the value of that bond has plunged to only $12,200, delivering a shocking loss of $1,890.'
  177. 1 i from northish gta, Canada writes: My government is telling me (albeit sub-rosa, via a high [presumably in authority] party official) that the adults are in control now. And this is supposed to be reassuring.

    The financial plans of the government are being released as a communications exercise; lots of targeted messages, but I haven't heard mention of a vision, a goal, an objective, that people can use to say that yes, this expenditure is a good idea, part of a thought out package.

    I see this as another episode of amateur hour. I'm embarrassed when my government expects mulligans. The governing party may desire less government, but could they at least do what they do professionally?
  178. Jason Roy from Central Nova - After October 14th AKA STILL Peter Mackay Country, Canada writes: NL Patriot from Republic of Newfoundland, Canada writes: Jason Roy from Central Nova - After October 14th AKA STILL Peter Mackay Country, Canada writes: I hope the budget is defeated as well just so I can watch those now calling for the government's downfall turn do a reversal and stand up and applaud when Iggy brings in an identical budget... ------ I don't care who is bringing in this budget, I am against it. WE have watched the Americans and the Europeans pump hundreds of Billions of dollars into their economies and what happened? Nothing! What happend was it didn't work so then what do they decide to do....hundreds of Billions more! Is that going to work? Not likely. All they are doing is spending to make it look like they are trying to rescue the public when in reality they are creating a deficit and debt burdon that we can never climb out of. -------------------------------- Actually I agree with you...doesn't matter who brings in this type of budget - Harper or Iggy - we're going to get the same thing.... The point of my post is the ones now crying for Harper's head over the budget tomorrow - particularily the LPC supporters - will be standing up and applauding and bending over for more when the same budget is unveiled by a Liberal led coalition or in case of an election - an LPC government. Going back to w/p controls and gas taxes - through NAFTA & GST - up to IT reversal and beyond - it's what the LPC does best - ridicules, defeats governments over and capaigns against all those 'bad' Conservative economic policies and measures - only to leave them in place or even more ironically implement them themselves - and in the eyes of LPC supporters what was previously ruinous Conservative policies now becomes yet another stellar example of LPC fiscal prudence.
  179. Red Suspenders from The Big Chair, writes: NL Patriot from Republic of Newfoundland, Canada writes:...
    What about the middle class people who are going to be the ones stuck paying all this off? What do we get?

    ================================

    You get to shut up and take whatever King Stephen dishes out.

    .
  180. Stan L from Canada writes: Flander Jones from Canada writes: There would be nothing wrong with the Liberals supporting the budget.

    Mr. Harper stays in power, oversees the largest deficit budget in Canadian history. The voters, completely battered by a recession take the first opportunity to punt the Conservatives....

    No I suppose that there would be nothing wrong....but I would like to think we are smart enough to recognize that this budget is nothing but a vote buying excercise and shows little to no thought or strategy......BEFORE we all have to suffer the effects.
  181. Ian Cameron from Canada writes: Man, what a lot of whiners and whingers. I don't believe that many of you will survive the current downturn. Why? Because you have forgotten basic survival skills! In my little community, we have about 30% unemployement, but that does not mean we do not work. We have pulled together to help each other, each applying his/her skills to the problem at hand. We barter and trade for goods and services, and yes, $$$$ are a problem, but we don't let money rule our lives. We live the best we can, within our means. We have leaned a few lessons from the Great Depression. We eat well, have a roof over our heads, are warm in the winter. I guess we are, to a large extent, the economist's and governments greatest fear.....largely independent of the current financial upheaval. I believe that the governments of the day have actively participated in and encouraged the problems that are now facing us as a country. Methinks I had better quit now, before I start leaning toward anarchy. LOL
  182. Wendy Stone from Canada writes:
    This is all smoke-and-mirrors stuff.

    This is, after all, the same government that only a few months ago was DETERMINED to cut arts and culture and is now going to spend millions on arts and culture???

    But if you look carefully, all of these spending initiatives are fairly paltry and plus the Tories are well known for making sure that money flows very slowly.

    The way they have released is also an indication of the fact that they really need to diguise the truth.

    So, they reveal the bad news, which is the $64 B deficit over two years, then follow with a couple of days of 'good' news (little sums to be spent here and there that they hope will appease liberals) to take people's focus away from the deficit they have just announced.

    These one-two-three 'good-cop, bad-cop' punches are a well-known strategic way of 'manipulating the message' to take the focus off the real news.

    The REAL NEWS is that this government was going into a deficit anyway, even without ANY spending to stimulate the economy.

    You will not need to scratch very deep beneath the budget surface to see that, though I doubt many journalists will trouble themselves.

    Furthermore, it will be interesting to see how they plan to make this deficit 'temporary.'

    Frankly, I just don't think they can, unless they intend to raise taxes again ... which would be very much going against their DNA!

    My suspicion is that a great deal of deficit will be caused by tax cuts for people who will not spend in the economy, rather than spending to stimulate the economy.
  183. Red Suspenders from The Big Chair, writes: Bill M from Canada writes: Can any one tell us what the Liberals would do differently?

    =====================

    Govern.
  184. bilbo baggins from Canada writes: Survival?? Oh please, this budget has already been passed by Harper's twin - Ignatieff. And what do Canadians get out it? A brutal overspend and back to defecit and debt. To say that the government could have done something in advance is laughable. Look around at EVERY country in the world and stop trying to spin this.
  185. bilbo baggins from Canada writes: The hilarious part of all of this is the people who are whining the most are the ones who were calling for all this spending. Now it is going to happen and they are crying. Ha ha ha.
  186. Brian C from Canada writes:
    Red Suspenders; today is the last day before you see Iggy fold like a cheap lawn chair. Do you have any last words that might serve as comfort for your loser Libbies?
  187. Decidely Libra from Canada writes: I attibute this desire to embrace this stimulus deathspiral to lamebrain socialists and MSM who put so much pressure on the Conservatives to do something when little was needed to ride out the storm. Now we got our wish. We could have toughed it out. No one was starving in the streets. We have a good social safety net to ensure that those who need the help get it. Somebody please save us from ourselves before we all fall over the cliff. At the end of the day I along with many other Canadians will hold Libs and NDP accountable for their immaturity and lack of cooperation.
  188. Jason Roy from Central Nova - After October 14th AKA STILL Peter Mackay Country, Canada writes: Stan L from Canada writes:

    No I suppose that there would be nothing wrong....but I would like to think we are smart enough to recognize that this budget is nothing but a vote buying excercise and shows little to no thought or strategy......BEFORE we all have to suffer the effects.

    -----------------------------------

    So what would a budget by the coalition or LPC that also has billions in stimulus spending, etc - as well as massive deficits be then?
  189. john dancy from Canada writes: Kevin Desmoulin , The deal is done. It was made weeks ago. The liberals and most likely the Bloc will support it. All the posters who complain about 64 billion is to much being spent or not in the right places should remember that when our social safety nets , that granny put in place, start to pay for the unemployed and the ones on pension and welfare the total bill will be hundreds of billions. No Canadian government can fix it. We have no extra financial cushion.
    Right now the two main parties in Canada are working together!
  190. Stan L from Canada writes: The simple truth is that IF this budget that we are going to see tomorrow was that great.....it wouldn't need the ususal attack ad spin to garner support.....same old same old from Harper.
  191. Red Suspenders from The Big Chair, writes: Martyn Whitt from Canada writes: Maybe after all this spending is announced in the budget there will be a little line near the end that proposes and end to to funding of political parties at the federal level. That would really stick it to the Liberal Party, after all this spending has been announced I can only dream-however I doubt it will be reality.

    If I were a strategists that's what I'd advise, ...

    ====================

    ?!?!?!

    You'd advise making the same mistake as a few weeks ago -- trying to turn Canada into a one-party state?

    Wow. Just ... wow.
  192. Martyn Whitt from Canada writes: Percy from NL I can see your point. But I think the grassroots support in the West won't mind compromising their values to keep the Liberals from Toronto and Montreal out of power. I don't like the spending much myself but I know we have a chance to come out of the recession in decent shape if the Liberals are in opposition.
  193. Paul Byer from Canada writes: Brian C from Canada writes:
    Red Suspenders; today is the last day before you see Iggy fold like a cheap lawn chair. Do you have any last words that might serve as comfort for your loser Libbies?

    '''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''

    The coalition dream and all of the hopes and aspirations of the Liberals leading will go up in smoke on Wednesday along with the disappearance of the newly created 'Red Suspenders'.

    Vern will be back Thursday under a new moniker though.

    So predictable. As are the Iggettes.
  194. NL Patriot from Republic of Newfoundland, Canada writes: Red Suspenders from The Big Chair, writes: NL Patriot from Republic of Newfoundland, Canada writes:...
    What about the middle class people who are going to be the ones stuck paying all this off? What do we get?

    ================================

    You get to shut up and take whatever King Stephen dishes out.

    ------

    You got that right, but I was hoping as a fiscal conservative that we could avoid all this panic and dilusional spending and it was looking good until the coalition threatened to bring down the government.

    Then Harper with his thirst for power allowed himself and the rest of us to get screwed. All the socialist in this country are froathing at the mouth at the thought of all the slush money they are getting to spend all over the place on their pet projects.
  195. lord cross of Blacks Harbour from BLACKS HARBOUR NB, Canada writes: Jason Roy from Central Nova - After October 14th AKA STILL Peter Mackay Country, Canada writes:

    Can you provide a testimonial for the veracity of Peter Mackay? I've been looking high and low for one ... All I can find is a copy of a 'verbal agreement' and 'signed pledge' which he gave to David Orchard, way back when Adam was a cowboy and Eve wore riding britches. As it happened, David had to take them to court to force them to refund the $50 thousand he was owed from the progressive conservative leadership. Is Mackay's word still* that good?

    I thought he was brilliant as defence minister when he arranged for delivery of the Leopard tanks *after
    our forces exit from Afghanistan in 2011. If anything should happen to Peter, please tell him I thought his performance next to the 'tatter patch, petting the dog,' was masterful but somewhat unworthy of any performance award.
  196. R W from Canada writes: Think the theory goes that in tough times, tax cuts don't help, because people are scared and they don't spend the savings. So while people's bank accounts inprove, the economy does not. Then you get job losses. The better strategy is to use the money for infrastructure projects that employ those that are losing jobs and thus create confidence and economic gains. The tax cuts are just politicing.
  197. Red Suspenders from The Big Chair, writes: NL Patriot from Republic of Newfoundland, Canada writes: I hope the opposition defeats this budget. Then I hope the GG calls an election so that we can get this mess cleaned up.

    ====================

    We just had a $300,000,000 (illegal and unnecessary) election!

    Parliament has sat a mere handful of days!

    If the government falls the GG would be insane to call an election under those circumstances.

    .
  198. john dancy from Canada writes: Stan L , nice but the facts dont look that way. Mr Harper is the PM of the longest minority in Canadian history. He must be able to work with others. This week he made the Liberals give him a leader who will work with the government. Canadians said spend money on infrastructure, check, spend on retraining, check, spend on the arts, check, old people, sick people, aboriginals,forestry and farmers, check,check,check. pure genius!!
  199. Zando Lee from Vancouver, Canada writes: ....why would anyone in their right mind put any faith in promises made by this gang of confirmed liars?.......
  200. Stan L from Canada writes: Jason Roy from Central Nova - After October 14th AKA STILL Peter Mackay Country, Canada writes: Stan L from Canada writes: No I suppose that there would be nothing wrong....but I would like to think we are smart enough to recognize that this budget is nothing but a vote buying excercise and shows little to no thought or strategy......BEFORE we all have to suffer the effects. ----------------------------------- So what would a budget by the coalition or LPC that also has billions in stimulus spending, etc - as well as massive deficits be then? ----------------------------------- I think regardless of the Government, we are all resigned to the fact that there will be a deficit (that the Conservatives made the situation inescapable is another matter).....so the question is not so much defifict or no deficit, but how much deficut and where are the spending and cuts. At the end of the day, I am not sure what's in the Conservative budget exactly or what is in the Liberal shadow budget exactly, but there are several clues that tell us what that spending and tax-cuts are very generic terms that can easily be applied to both parties. So it's kind of facile to say because the Liberals wanted spending it's exactly the same as the Conservatives. The difference as it appears for the moment is that between the Liberals and the Conservatives 'spending' is quite simply that the Conservatives are giving hand-outs, while the Liberals are focussing on spending as stimulus, not just giving relief, but providing cash flow to the best opportunities to create jobs and etc.....As for tax cuts, the Liberals are using a focussed and targetted approach to those who are genuinely in need....the Conservatives are simply applying taxcuts across the board (a al George Bush style....which we know won't work)......... Like I said, I am not sure until I see the whole documents, but in general we know that there are already fundamental differences.
  201. felix balcarce from nanaimo, Canada writes: Great, great, Globe and Mail! If only image could help a country's problem we would've been in the right truck. What a sad ticket, to try to sell us a person who doesn't have feeling, imagination, nor good will, neither sensitivity to do something about the country's problem. Harper doesn't believe in government intervention to solve the problem created by the Casino Market Oriented Economy. Harper doesn't have the sensitivity to be concerned about the people at the bottom. In economical situation like the present we need responsible leaders with visions, not politicians like the one that took Ottawa in the last election because of a better image. Just try to remember the way they handle Question Period like a wild bunch screaming, making fun of their peers and applauding mediocrity and lies. That common expression after an election, that the people have spoken with their votes not always reflects the real feeling of the majority of people, but rather sometimes the strategy of one, or another party, or politician. Let's just consider the word stratagem used now a day more in political and civil life than in war strategies:

    'Stratagem n. 1 Scheme or trick for deceiving and outwitting the enemy. Any clever scheme or trick designed to achieve a goal: He got the position by an unusual stratagem...'

    And there are more samples all connoted to civil life rather than to war as it was in the past. The saddest part of all this is that now-a-day we are conscious about this reality of deception and lies in political life, but we are so used to it that we coexist with this flagellum without trying to do anything about it.

    Well... what can we do?! 'As we say in English': 'Ce est la vie', or something closer. But... I'm just passing by, and... you need not to worry about it and... please don't take me too seriously. The Foreigner.
  202. Philosopher King from Ivory Tower, Canada writes: '...Peter Woolstencroft, a political scientist at the University of Waterloo, and an expert on Canada's Conservative movement. 'By not being adroit in November, he has created a circumstance that, unless he wants to be defeated, forces him to present a richer budget than he might have wanted.'

    From where I sit that is much more of a disaster than many seem to realise. Without a vision for where we are headed, and a plan to get us there, much of this money is simply being wasted.
  203. Hugh Andrew from Ottawa, Canada writes: If it were not that the future of our country was at stake, I'd want to hear no more of these, lying, dogmatic, bungling, self interested people who represent Parliament. It has been exhausting. Month after month, year after year, we face crises, most often self made. I believe that the fiscal depression is spreading to becoming serious psychological depression as people struggle with their reality in the face of pathetic representation on The Hill.
  204. Edwin Green from NS, Canada writes: where are all the GST, haters now
  205. Kevin Desmoulin from TO, Canada writes: Too little money I think, If 'reinvestments' in our country and our economy are going to work and if the idea to throw money in the mix, GO BIG. Make Large Projects.
    I call it reinvestment's, bc I think as investments, in our country and people, my fellow canadians, this is money we paid in, we share it all.
    Maybe it is time to regroup and fix our nets, sharpen the blades, Learn new skills, Their is a change in this world for sure. Lets rethink things as this change it is happening.
  206. Spin Assassin from Ville du Quebec, Canada writes: Thanks lord cross of Blacks Harbour from BLACKS HARBOUR NB.

    So that's where the idea came from. I'm sorry about your lay-offs. I've never been laid off ever. I've worked at places that folded a couple months after I jumped ship. (due to your 'deep sense of fore-boding')

    The fact remains that people are saving or they aren't. If they aren't then all the tax cuts will go into the economy. If they are, its because they think they will need the money for bad times ahead. That means they'll save regardless of tax cuts.

    Further, would you say that an increase in taxes would cause people to spend more and save less? Again, I don't think so. They will save enough, if at all, to meet their expenses for a few months.

    Finally, Canadians are not Americans, much less Americans in dubya's booming times. Are these tax and savings statistics truly indicative of how Canadians will act in a recession. I don't believe the correlations are valid. It appears to be the regular leftist opposition to tax cuts of any kind at any time.
  207. NL Patriot from Republic of Newfoundland, Canada writes: Red Suspenders from The Big Chair, writes: NL Patriot from Republic of Newfoundland, Canada writes: I hope the opposition defeats this budget. Then I hope the GG calls an election so that we can get this mess cleaned up.

    ====================

    We just had a $300,000,000 (illegal and unnecessary) election!

    Parliament has sat a mere handful of days!

    If the government falls the GG would be insane to call an election under those circumstances.

    -------------

    Well I agree that we just had an unnecessary election, not illegal but unnecessary none the less. That doesn't change the fact however that the GG usually acts on the request of the PM and if he request an election then she most likely will grant it. Especially if he tells here that he delivered everything the opposition was demanding in the budget and Jack Layton has been running around proclaiming he is going to defext the budget no matter what.

    She may agree that this coalition was nothing more than a power grab and had nothing to do with non-confidence. Add to that the Canadian people don't want it by a large margin.
  208. J. Kenneth Yurchuk from Toronto, Canada writes: Rob C writes: What is really concerning is what happens AFTER all this money is spent! The US federal govt. debt will be in the area of $15 TRILLION!! (not even calculating State and municipal debt) What if after the blip, the economy goes backwards again. Will lenders say ' Enough! No more!'
    ___________________________________________________________

    Indeed, Particularly if military spending continues at current rates.

    The debt crisis is unprecedented, and I have no idea how it will be resolved. The 500 lb gorilla in the room is who holds all that debt, (and several trillion in US$$$ cash reserves) China will be in a rather interesting position in about 10 years...

    Lanier, the American poet of the 1800s once wrote 'Was is but trade grown miserly' These kinds of unbalances frequently lead to conflagrations.
  209. Eel Expert from Canada writes: Don Adams, the Centrist Conservative from Canada writes: LIEbbie spin....and the world turns! Rusty Waters...your statement 'send their students to university'..... thereby is one of the biggest problems in this Country...people 'sending' their kids to university. If the kids want to go, why aren't they paying the full shot themselves? Why should parents feel they have to pay?

    Yeah Don, you are absolutely right!!

    And why should I have to pay for my kids dental bills either??

    Can't my 6 year old just find a job and pay for it himself??

    Why the hell am I also buying baby formula for the newborn???

    Can't that freeloading baby get a job???

    Lots of baby modelling jobs around.

    God I hate Canadian Children for their freeloading ways.

    Not like you and Me Don, right??

    You and I paid for the cost of our births out from our own hard earned money.

    http://gunghotown.myminicity.com/tra
  210. Accountant from Toronto from Toronto, Canada writes: Is that 65 billion per year over two years, or a total deficit over two years totalling 65 billion?

    When are we going to learn that you can't spend your way out of recession? It increases debt and makes the economic correction long and drawn out. If you think government stimulus works well then take a look at history - you won't find any good examples of it improving an economy. In fact all it will do is drive up the prices of resources at a time when the 'real' economy is still in the gutter. It will by all means make the situation worse.

    When times get a little better, the government will be forced to cut back on health services, pension funding, and provincial funding at the same time when the baby boomers are retiring in mass numbers. Smart plan.

    Government should be reducing the salaries of its workers - get them in line with private sector wages. Use those funds to stimulate the economy.
  211. john dancy from Canada writes: Hugh Andrew, according to statscan we spent almost 500 billion last year on these same areas. thats without extra, just the social safety nets in place....you should really all go look and see what the country of Canada spends on us every year. 30 extra billion is nothing!!!
  212. Red Suspenders from The Big Chair, writes: bilbo baggins from Canada writes: The hilarious part of all of this is the people who are whining the most are the ones who were calling for all this spending. Now it is going to happen and they are crying. Ha ha ha.

    ========

    HAHAHA! Just days before the fallacious and malicious 'fiscal update', Flapper had been at a G20 conference singingly loudly from the stimulus songbook. So it was, in fact, this government that were calling for the spending first. Then they flip flopped. Now they're flip flopping again. Flapper is so floppy its amazing he can sit upright.
  213. AJA M from Canada writes: lord cross of Blacks Harbour from BLACKS HARBOUR NB = your post on Peter McKay was excellent. The only thing missing was identifying Peter's new name - 'rent-a-dog' McKay. It is so appropriate.
  214. lord cross of Blacks Harbour from BLACKS HARBOUR NB, Canada writes:
    Flander Jones from Canada writes:

    'There would be nothing wrong with the Liberals supporting the budget.

    Mr. Harper stays in power, oversees the largest deficit budget in Canadian history. The voters, completely battered by a recession take the first opportunity to punt the Conservatives, Mr. Harper's 'legacy'? The most controversial spendthrift in our history. A title he will have to live with for rest of his life. And for someone with his ideology it will be a cross of immense pain to bear. Karma sucks eh Mr. Harper?'

    Quite frankly, I don't think the unemployed, who are currently suffering terribly in this crisis, can afford to be shoved aside by any further delay. The infrastructure delays which have already occurred due to stringent reviews and guidelines probably still cannot meet those rules ... Yet there has been no public admission from government to list the amounts and reasons for delay. Unless, of course, they're riddled with pork-barrel preferences, like the Loyola Hearn sewer replacement project.
  215. Stan L from Canada writes: Spin Assassin from Ville du Quebec, Canada writes:
    The fact remains that people are saving or they aren't. If they aren't then all the tax cuts will go into the economy. If they are, its because they think they will need the money for bad times ahead. That means they'll save regardless of tax cuts.

    Spin....I get your thinking, but behaviourally it doens't matter if this is the US or Canada and it doens't matter what a consumers spending patterns were BEFORE a recession hits, there is a common shared behaviour that we all exhibit in Western-style democracies during times of recessions and that is to save and pay down debt when times are tough. Even those that carry no debt, will have a tendency to 'hoard' their cash. Soemtimes, a well-timed tax cut can spur spending, but that is typically seen in advance of a recession as a preventative measure....but once a recession is here, the behaviour is to save. We have seen the broad based tax cuts fail in the US and we have seen these types of cuts fail in the past as well.....a broad based tax cut will do nothing.
  216. Old blue from Canada writes: It's hard to believe all the whining as Harper is acting(spending) just like a Liberal.
  217. Tor Hill Sask. from Canada writes: Speaking generally, one has to consider the Harper Conservatives' response to this crisis in the light of its actions over the past three years. During that time, I saw a government pretty much in a stationary mode, merely content with attacking that fellow who was notaleader. The strategies of the past three years didn't get CPC over the obstacles presented by notaleader. That doesn't mean the strategies won't work this time, but there's a track record and a CPC method to consider. For most of us Canadians, the situation has been made hopelessly complicated. Mr. Ignatieff is really the one in the damned if he does, damned if he doesn't situation. In the end, we simply don't want an election. We're going to have to work together somehow, for better or worse. Was that phrase 'for better or worse' in the wedding vows the Harper Conservatives offered Quebec in the Quebec-as-a-Nation motion in the House? Probably not. For me, 'for better or worse' would include working with all elected MPs in Canada, all of whom swore an oath of allegiance to Queen Elizabeth II.
  218. Mr. Toronto from Canada writes: Yes, censured ... from Canada, absolutely!
  219. Bill M from Canada writes: Jake The Snake from Canada writes: Those con radio ads, the ones that are paid for by the loyal drones, are the height of cheeze. The radio actress with the annoyingly whiny voice saying, 'Remember all that talk about a coalition', making sure the Bloc is the first party mentioned even though they aren't a part of it, can you be any more transparent? Geeze, I better be careful or I might be invoking Godwin here. For fools and for suckers that's all there is to say. Money well spent? Well at least it's not my money, keep spending that war chest, great job!

    Actually, it is your money. Remember what started the whole coalition idea? The proposal to take away tax payer funding of political parties. The Cons get the payments too. So it's our money paying for the ads. feel better now?
  220. Red Suspenders from The Big Chair, writes: Decidely Libra from Canada writes: I attibute this desire to embrace this stimulus deathspiral to lamebrain socialists and MSM who put so much pressure on the Conservatives to do something when little was needed to ride out the storm.

    ==========================

    If your analysis is correct, answer me this ... what kind of craven tory cowards would sacrifice all their conservative principles and go along with such a thing? (Answer: Harper's kind.)
  221. Philosopher King from Ivory Tower, Canada writes: john dancy from Canada writes: '...Mr Harper is the PM of the longest minority in Canadian history. He must be able to work with others...'

    Yes all those years of failure and rejection by the electorate despite a distrusted and demoralized opposition really shows Harper's political genius at work.

    Imagine what he could do with no opposition at all! Hmmm...

    You know, I wasn't aware that 'working with others' meant beating them down so they don't speak up against you, but if that's the case then Harper's the hardest working consensus builder I've ever seen!
  222. Red Suspenders from The Big Chair, writes: john dancy from Canada writes: Kevin Desmoulin , The deal is done. It was made weeks ago. The liberals and most likely the Bloc will support it. ... Right now the two main parties in Canada are working together!

    ==================

    Working together with the treacherous Bloc!!! Shocking!
  223. john dancy from Canada writes: Red Suspenders, What Mr Harper and Mr Flayerty were saying is that in Canada we have the best lending practices and the best social safety nets of the g20. They said they would monitor and assist these ALREADY in place programs. Thanks granny for trying to help after the last depression and think of us instead of yourself. To bad these posters all want free handouts.....
  224. garlick toast from Canada writes: I expect the CPC front benchers will all be wearing neck braces, having experienced severe whiplash lately. This budget is like drilling holes in the hull of a leaky vessel to let the water out.
  225. Fran Irwin from Medicine Hat, Canada writes: Despite the touting of 'consultations' and statements that Harper and the 'no deficits predicted for 5 years' crew have learned their lessons of 7 weeks ago, I think the biggest indicator that THEY HAVE NOT is the unprecedented PR political spin coming with a multitude of announcements of budget spending a full WEEK before the 'sealed' budget (supposedly prepared by the Department of Finance?). How is the leak that my local Folk Arts Council will get $6500 in this budget going to stimulate the economy? Answer - it won't - but it will soothe those in my community who bitterly complained of cuts to the arts. To me, all these leaks prove one thing - Harper has not changed, this budget is NOT about the good of the Canadian Economy - it is about SAVING HIS SORRY POLITICAL FUTURE! These leaks indicate that it isn't even a budget that is aligned in any way with Harper's core beliefs of small government, devolution of Federal powers, libertarian the usual neo-con drivel so attractive to Harper's base. No one can look at this past 2 weeks and make an argument that Harper has changed - he has not, he is still a control freak who wants to control every bit of the budget 'message' and it is all about his sorry a*s!
  226. Anne Peterson from Canada writes: Stephen Harper cannot be trusted to follow through on anything he says. All he knows is to play tricks. He is a shape shifter. Whatever he thinks will get him votes he will do and to hell with what is best for the country or the people. He has a raw nasty drive for control at all costs. We need a grown up person to be Prime Minister.
  227. Red Suspenders from The Big Chair, writes: NL Patriot from Republic of Newfoundland, Canada writes: ... Well I agree that we just had an unnecessary election, not illegal but unnecessary none the less. That doesn't change the fact however that the GG usually acts on the request of the PM and if he request an election then she most likely will grant it.

    ==========================

    Couple of things:

    1) If a vote of confidence is lost in the House, the vote-loser is no longer PM and the GG has no need to give his opinions any weight.

    2) There was a law that fixed the date of the election. Without repealing that law an election was held on a different date. Hence the election was illegal.
  228. Still Learning at 78 from Canada writes: This man Harper is a complte fraud. I do not trust him he is the sneakiest PM I have ever seen and I have seen a few. Look at this list of accomplishments posted by someone on another comment board.--

    -- In and Out, Bernier, Income Trusts, Security Leaks, Funding Cuts for Women's Rights, Cadman Affair, Attack Ads, Frigates, Homophobia, Right to Life, Water Sales, Unregistered Firearms, Kyoto Accord, Kelowna Accord, Biker Broad, Listeria Outbreak, Looming Deficite, Fort PMO, John Baird, Big Oil, Bush Jr., Transparency, Accountability, $100.00 annual Daycare Costs, Afghanistan, CBC Funding Cuts, Cultural Funding Cuts, Conservative label used by Reformists, Tailings ponds, Pristine lakes, Mutant Fish, Zenn Vehicles, Taser Deaths, Religeous Fundamentalists, Attending Democratic Convention in US, Absent at Olympics, GG told to Forego Paralympics, Internet Copyright Legislation, Mulroney Affair, Nobel Winners Ignored, Only Bush Calls SH Steve, Atlantic Accord, Rona Ambrose, Information Data Base, Militarization of Arctic, Outsourcing Policy Research, Fixed Election Date, Ambassador's reports on Human Rights Overseas Made Secret, Attempt to Stop Same Sex Marriage, Advertisement Budget Doubled, Almost All Legislation Posed as Confidence Motion, Support for Biofuel, Insufficient Support of Alternative Energy, Failure to protect Canadians Abroad, Support for Guantanamo, Lost Nato Documents, Wheat Board Muzzled, Caucus Muzzled, Ontario Ignored, Canadians Executed in America, Cancelled National Childcare, Fired Nuclear Watchdog, Embarassment on World Stage.'
  229. Red Suspenders from The Big Chair, writes: Old blue from Canada writes: It's hard to believe all the whining as Harper is acting(spending) just like a Liberal.

    ====================

    Why is it hard to believe? Surely when a Con leader turns around and behaves like a Liberal it's natural for Con supporters to cry out in alarm.
  230. lord cross of Blacks Harbour from BLACKS HARBOUR NB, Canada writes:
    Old blue from Canada writes:

    It's hard to believe all the whining as Harper is acting(spending) just like a Liberal.

    Time for you to own up to your origins ... You're really John Tory of faith-based schools fame, who went searching to cut $1.5 Billion of 'frills and slack' from the Ontario budget; Resoundingly defeated by the current Minister of Education and a no-show on the 'frills and slack.' Your word is probably not as good as Peter Mackay's which is currently laying next to whale body waste at the bottom of the ocean. That's right, it doesn't 'float' like Harper / Flairity's.
  231. Philosopher King from Ivory Tower, Canada writes: NL Patriot from Republic of Newfoundland, Canada writes: '...She may agree that this coalition was nothing more than a power grab and had nothing to do with non-confidence...'

    You're clearly very shaky on the concept.

    Regardless of the reasons for their lack of confidence, the very fact that the majority would vote down the government is non-confidence, by definition.

    When the majority of parliament wishes to continue working, having been chosen only three months ago, it is very doubtful the GG would call another election no one wants.

    We do not live in a system where Canadians get to vet every decision made in parliament, and given the general level of ignorance concerning parliamentary democracies, I am thankful for this fact.

    Voters choose a representative for their riding, and it is the job of this member of parliament to represent their interests. That's it, end of story.

    Ruling by opinion polls makes nonsense of our traditions.
  232. Don Adams, the Centrist Conservative from Canada writes: Hi Evil Evey :-) Nope, not grumpy....happy... that this BS will soon be over! Today, throne speech, tomorrow budget, Wed, the budget passes, one way or another. THEN maybe the Cons can start moving on different items that will benefit Canadians. Going to be a lot of new monikers in use here by Thursday! :-) Evey.... getting a good education all depends on what someone is going to do with it. No sense getting a BA if you're going to be a retailer, or a heavy equiptment operator...... or just plain don't know what you want to do. HELP a kid...that's fine..... too many parents look at college or university as an OBLIGATION to their kids, and the kids look at one as their ENTITLEMENT! I say WRONG! It's all part of my personal philosophy, give deserving people a hand UP not a hand OUT! People have to get back to taking more responsibility for their own lives, their own actions..... our society has gotten away from that during the past 40 years! I can give as an example one of my sons.... went off to college, we were prepared to HELP him, not SEND him...he had to come up with a lot of the money himself if he wanted his degree. He lasted 1 semester, didn't like it, didn't figure he needed it, went to work in retail at minimun wage. Learned his trade. It took him 10 years, but today, he's the manager of a store in a major chain. Hasn't hit the 6 figure income...yet... close, counting his bonus, but this is only his 1st store as a manager. He just turned 31! Some of his friends...same age.....Mommy and Daddy sent them off to college, they had a great time, bummed around, got their degrees, today complain they can't find decent jobs...just burger flipping. What can I say? :-)
  233. Zando Lee from Vancouver, Canada writes: ....just 2 months ago Stevie told the World that deficit financing was out of the question...now we are being told of a 64 billion deficit....it's time to send this incompetent ideologue packing.....
  234. Wayne Walker from Canada writes: Lord Cross is one of those clowns who cannot understand the facts even months after they have been explained to all. He still wants to make the purchase of long term mortgages from the banks sound like some kind of giveaway or bailout. First, the government is actually making money on the deal. They borrowed at a rate which was less than what they will earn on the mortgages. So far as what happens if the mortgages must be foreclosed at a loss, NOTHING HAS CHANGED. CMHC will have to cover the losses which is exactly what would have happened if the banks still owned the mortgages when they went into default. The government did not take on any risk which did not already exist, the banks enjoy more liquidity to help them continue lending and the government earns a profit margin on their investment. Lord Cross, please do not emphasize your lack of understanding of money matters by repeating this garbage.
  235. Don Adams, the Centrist Conservative from Canada writes: Vern! (Red Suspenders) Have you now joined the Ontario Landowners Association? Red Suspenders...their trademark :-)
  236. john dancy from Canada writes: Red Suspenders , yes , yes the Bloc come begging. Please give us some of that spending and we will vote for the budget. Somehow that is different to me than saying to them tell me what we can possibly do for you. The Liberals already made the deal , Mr Harper does not need the bloc. The coalition needed them and was willing to give them anything.
    Philosopher King, I think the people of Canada are ,as a group smarter than you give them credit for. We keep voting them in. No one beat the Liberal party down. They happily chose Mr Dion. Who, despite being told his green shift was a bust said ,'I dont care'
    Remember back to the 90's , the Canadian people did not get fooled by Mr Day and stayed with the better choice, the Liberals.
  237. Joe Dick from Kingston, Canada writes: Still Learning at 78 from Canada writes: This man Harper is a complte fraud. I do not trust him he is the sneakiest PM I have ever seen and I have seen a few. Look at this list of accomplishments posted by someone on another comment board.--

    -- In and Out, Bernier, Income Trusts, Security Leaks, Funding Cuts for Women's Rights, Cadman Affair, Attack Ads, Frigates, Homophobia, Right to Life, Water Sales, Unregistered Firearms, Kyoto Accord, Kelowna Accord, Biker Broad, Listeria Outbreak, Looming Deficite, Fort PMO, John Baird, Big Oil, Bush Jr., Transparency, Accountability, $100.00 annual Daycare Costs, Afghanistan, CBC Funding Cuts, Cultural Funding Cuts, Conservative label used by Reformists, Tailings ponds, Pristine lakes, Mutant Fish, Zenn Vehicles, Taser Deaths, Religeous Fundamentalists, Attending Democratic Convention in US, Absent at Olympics, GG told to Forego Paralympics, Internet Copyright Legislation, Mulroney Affair, Nobel Winners Ignored, Only Bush Calls SH Steve, Atlantic Accord, Rona Ambrose, Information Data Base, Militarization of Arctic, Outsourcing Policy Research, Fixed Election Date, Ambassador's reports on Human Rights Overseas Made Secret, Attempt to Stop Same Sex Marriage, Advertisement Budget Doubled, Almost All Legislation Posed as Confidence Motion, Support for Biofuel, Insufficient Support of Alternative Energy, Failure to protect Canadians Abroad, Support for Guantanamo, Lost Nato Documents, Wheat Board Muzzled, Caucus Muzzled, Ontario Ignored, Canadians Executed in America, Cancelled National Childcare, Fired Nuclear Watchdog, Embarassment on World Stage.'

    ===========================================

    A very impressive list!! Thanks for posting it.
  238. Darrell Gudmundson from Saskatoon, Canada writes: I think we can reasonably call this budget the 'Ignatieff budget' or the 'Coalition budget', since it is through fear of him or them that it has been created.

    Another bold example of Conservative integrity in action.

    If it turns out to be the correct action to take, I sincerely hope that the credit for it goes to the right people!
  239. NL Patriot from Republic of Newfoundland, Canada writes: Red Suspenders from The Big Chair, writes: Couple of things:

    1) If a vote of confidence is lost in the House, the vote-loser is no longer PM and the GG has no need to give his opinions any weight.

    2) There was a law that fixed the date of the election. Without repealing that law an election was held on a different date. Hence the election was illegal.

    ------------------

    #1 If the PM loses a confidence vote he is still the PM until another one is sworn in. There is NEVER a time when we don't have a leader in charge of the country. So yes the PM will go to the GG and ask for an election and present her with her options.

    #2 Yes there is a fixed election law but it is not unconditional. The PM still holds the right to request an election, that right was never given up when the law was enacted.
  240. Free The West Free The West from A Vote For The Liberals Is a Vote For The Bloc., Canada writes: The greatest issue in Canadian politics today is the active role taken by the Toronto-based media in trying to usurp power for the Toronto-based Liberals. This has led to a non-stop campaign of contrived headlines and even outright lies from the sector of society that has been traditionally been given the trust of the public to present unbiased information. The G&M is by far the worst offender.
  241. Zando Lee from Vancouver, Canada writes: ....it comes down to credibility, not who makes the best promises, the former is a commodity of which the Harper government is bereft.....
  242. O Perdana from Canada writes: 'The 64 billion dollar budget deficit should come as no surprise.
    It is directly related to a 75 billion dollar bank bailout program for Canada's chartered banks, announced, virtually unnoticed, four days before the October Federal election. '
    See Michel Chossudovsky's article:http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=12007
  243. Bob B from Canada writes: Now the conservatives are admitting they are childish. 'the budget will be in the hands of experienced people' I didn't know you had to add the terms of several members to get a number you can call Experience. The reason for secrecy on budget contents was always to prevent people from profiting from advance notice. So I presume this was a notice to their investor friends.I guess thats where the inexperience from the EXPERIENCED members comes in. Give us a break. The conservertatives are all inexperienced and childish and that includes Harper (the only person who can take his kid to school and say goodbye with a handshake). I hope we can give him the same handshake tomorrow.
  244. Red Suspenders from The Big Chair, writes: NL Patriot from Republic of Newfoundland, Canada writes: ...

    #1 If the PM loses a confidence vote he is still the PM until another one is sworn in. There is NEVER a time when we don't have a leader in charge of the country. So yes the PM will go to the GG and ask for an election and present her with her options.

    2 Yes there is a fixed election law but it is not unconditional. The PM still holds the right to request an election, that right was never given up when the law was enacted.

    ======================

    1. You may be right on the technicality, but it remains the fact that such pro tem PM would not have the democratic legitimacy that requires the GG to give his opinion any credence.

    2. The law did not give the PM any such discretion as you suggest there.
  245. Red Suspenders from The Big Chair, writes: Free The West Free The West from A Vote For The Liberals Is a Vote For The Bloc., Canada writes: The greatest issue in Canadian politics today is the active role taken by the Toronto-based media in trying to usurp power for the Toronto-based Liberals. This has led to a non-stop campaign of contrived headlines and even outright lies from the sector of society that has been traditionally been given the trust of the public to present unbiased information. The G&M is by far the worst offender.

    ==============

    I'm so sick of that tired nonsense.

    Wake up.

    The Globe has been a tory rag for generations.

    They endorsed Harpo in the last two elections.

    How much more bending over and spreading their cheeks do you expect from them?
  246. R. Carriere from Maritimes, Canada writes:

    J. Kenneth Yurchuk from Toronto, Canada writes:

    Indeed, Particularly if military spending continues at current rates.

    The debt crisis is unprecedented, and I have no idea how it will be resolved. The 500 lb gorilla in the room is who holds all that debt, (and several trillion in US$$$ cash reserves) China will be in a rather interesting position in about 10 years...
    -----

    Kenneth: ' In 2006, the U.S. Department of Defense employed 2,143,000 people, while it estimates that private defense contractors employ 3,600,000 workers, for a grand total of 5,743,000 defense-related American jobs, or 3.8 percent of the total labor force.

    http://www.onlinejournal.com/artman/publish/article_1241.shtml

    It's almost as if they need 'war' to continue on!

    You also have to wonder what China will do. When is enough, enough? With all the Federal Reserve printing presses going hot 24/7, one wonders when the US dollar will collapse!

    Perhaps the world will give the US one more chance.....
    .
  247. lord cross of Blacks Harbour from BLACKS HARBOUR NB, Canada writes:

    Wayne Walker from Canada writes:

    Absolute NONSENSE. Who permitted the sub-prime mortgage to flourish in Canada? The government of Stephen Harper and Jimmy Flairity.

    Now that policy has been reversed ... after the BAD LOANS are on the books. This is not the beginning of the end ... It's not even the end of the beginning of this downturn. Your central theme is the same as Harper / Flairity ... Buy HIGH and sell LOW. That will be among the first transactions we will ask to have audited, after the majority have voted for a full review.
  248. john dancy from Canada writes: Don Adams, You are correct about a hand up instead of a hand out. Responsibility, sounds so 'Obama esc'. But do you really think we should not have the best educated people on the planet. I do.
  249. Harper has to go from Canada writes: Deck chairs, Titanic, iceberg.
  250. Zando Lee from Vancouver, Canada writes: Harper has to go from Canada....yes we can!.....
  251. Gabriel Allon from Canada writes:
    John 'Shrek' Baird gave a nice shovel ready statement.
  252. lord cross of Blacks Harbour from BLACKS HARBOUR NB, Canada writes:
    Wayne Walker from Canada writes

    The 'liquidity relief' offered to Canadian Banks by BOC exactly fits the mold of Collaterized Debt Obligations in the U.S. sub-prime failures. I will press opposition parties to take a hard look at those apparently non-performing loans ... and the resultant fallout.

    Just keep shovelling your irrelevant tripe ... The truth will out and heads will roll. Obviously the banks were saying they had 'no money to lend,' due to the long-term constraints of the 40-year term, and they saw an opportunity to unload the obligation.

    It's much like the Carney forecast of a turnaround in the 2nd. Quarter of '09 ... Fantasy ... nothing more, nothing less!
  253. john dancy from Canada writes: Zando Lee, it comes down to credibility, and the people of Canada have spoken again. And the Liberal party will agree tomorrow. And thats 70% of Canadian voters.....
  254. Still Learning at 78 from Canada writes: Mr Obama has a maturity that Mr Harper does not seem to have.
  255. john dancy from Canada writes: Wayne Walker, better go check who was PM when that was begun. Hint, Liberal party......
  256. Bill Woodcock from Canada writes: I just want all of the Conservative Party of Canada supporters to answer one question. If the Liberals consider this budget good for Canada and vote in favor of it, will you posters who constantly deride other parties be saying that the Liberals were responsible and stood up for Canada, or will you say that the Liberals and Mr. Ignatieff are blustering cowards ?
  257. Wayne Walker from Canada writes: I see that Mike Sty is still complaining about income trusts. Perhaps he should have considered suing his advisor because income trusts never were a suitable investment for seniors. By and large income trusts were small or medium sized companies. Many were small resource companies. They raised money that way because they were too small to be listed on the TSX. That means they were not up to the standards of the holdings in a small cap mutual fund which would be considered too risky for seniors. Then you add risk because your direct ownership of income trusts would not be as diversified as the mutual fund. Then you add risk because the value was inflated by a tax gimmick and there is a long history of tax gimmicks being revoked. If you had more than a very small percentage of your money in this class of investment the advisor was out to lunch. If you were your own advisor, consider getting good advice in the future.
    And before you ask, I did not buy any income trusts because I had been caught by tax changes in the past and because I did not like the quality of the companies. Yellow Pages was about the only business I would have considered if the value was not inflated.
  258. jamie yavis from Canada writes: Harper is a snake in the grass: unethical, partisan to the max, and no vision of governance beyond pouting a feather in his cap.

    Right now he is trying to buy support, with just press releases! I really doubt that even a tenth of the money currently being promised finds its way to those that need it, or could use it in a diligent way.

    This man, and his minions, are taking smoke and mirrors to whole new levels.
  259. Philosopher King from Ivory Tower, Canada writes: NL Patriot from Republic of Newfoundland, Canada writes: '... Yes there is a fixed election law but it is not unconditional. The PM still holds the right to request an election, that right was never given up when the law was enacted...'

    This is nonsense double talk.

    The entire point of the legislation is to keep the Prime Minister from calling election's that benefit him politically.

    It's supposed to work even against a majority PM, so if a minority PM can call one out of the blue, the entire legislation is useless.

    Honestly, is there nothing you partisans won't twist into a lie?
  260. lord cross of Blacks Harbour from BLACKS HARBOUR NB, Canada writes:
    Gabriel Allon from Canada writes:

    John 'Shrek' Baird gave a nice shovel ready statement

    *If that's a long-e as in Shriek, I'll buy it!*
  261. hangin right from Van, Canada writes: 'we have grown ups running the budget'? lol thats one best jokes I have heard in a long time. thanks for the laugh.

    the only thing Harper has 'cemented', is a reputation for being Incompetent, manipulative and selfserving .

    just to prove it , I just heard a radio ad from the Harper government telling us people what to do and say to the opposition .
    Like really now , we don't pay taxes just so the Cons can run ads making demands of us to try to save their butts. how Incompetent and self serving can they get? honestly now , they just wasted our tax dollars on their own agenda . and they claim they learned some lessons, not!

    there goes the Tories sinking into the deep river of deficit with their incompetence attached to their ankles.
    hopefully the moderator will be okay with comment.
  262. john dancy from Canada writes: Still Learning at 78, yes he does but HE can do what he wants for four years and a Canadian leader in a minority always has to play games and appease someone else. Mr Harper is the longest serving minority PM in Canadian history. He must be very good at it.......
  263. R. Carriere from Maritimes, Canada writes:

    Philosopher King from Ivory Tower, Canada writes:

    Voters choose a representative for their riding, and it is the job of this member of parliament to represent their interests. That's it, end of story.

    Ruling by opinion polls makes nonsense of our traditions
    -----------------
    PK: I don't believe that is 'end of story.' What would be intersting would be a comprehensive survey about 'Why' and 'What' a voter actually voted for. Was it local representitive? Party leader? Party platform or philosophy? Promises made (but almost always NOT kept)?.Was it some type of anti-vote vs a positive vote? Because parents and grandparents always voted that way?

    As for ruling by 'opinion polls,' that is what Parties have always done for the most part. Go back over the last 50 years either here or in the US, look at the winning Party platforms (based on public opinion) then study what was actually implimented. EX: When the environment was the public 'hot topic' since 1990, we all heard the promises--But there was almost NEVER any real action...
    .
  264. garlick toast from Canada writes: Harper is '' shovel ready''.
  265. One Voice from leftcoast, Canada writes: 'Observers also say Mr. Harper's authority has been curbed, his agenda circumscribed and his instincts to attack Mr. Ignatieff curtailed.'

    I wonder if the GG informed Harper during their 2-hour prorogue talk that if he loses the confidence of the House again (for whatever reason), she will ask the Opposition to govern.
  266. J Kay from Canada writes: O Perdana: Um no it isn't. It has nothing to do with that at all. The 'bailout' of the banks is an off-balance sheet expenditure and what this $64 billion is, is on-balance sheet spending.
  267. jamie yavis from Canada writes: BTW

    Wayne Walker from Canada writes: 'I see that Mike Sty is still complaining about income trusts. And before you ask, I did not buy any income trusts because I had been caught by tax changes in the past and because I did not like the quality of the companies. Yellow Pages was about the only business I would have considered if the value was not inflated.'

    You are not very well informed!
  268. Barry Turner from Ottawa, Canada writes: So far we have seen only chump change out of a 30 to 34 billion dollar annual deficit. What we have not seen is the revenue decline that has already occurred and will persist or get worse - GST revenue and income tax cuts, loss of corporate tax due to business declne and oil revenue adn gasolne tax losses. These are a mix of structural losses introduced by Harper and Flaherty and cyclical declines for which no one yet can present a serious and credible estimate of turmnaround time. This will all become apparent when voters see that new spending comes nowhere close to the total annual deficit and Flaherty's predictions of turnaround time and his recovery plans look like unadulterated nonsense. Harper has brought Canada to its fiscal knees through gross and excessive tax cuts and spending, the worst in Canada's history. Now we and our grandchildren will be paying for it. Please, Ignatieff, do us all a favour and put an end to this incompetent, clownish and greed-driven government.
  269. Anne Peterson from Canada writes: If the coalition had been on the ballot I would have voted for it along with about 60% of Canadians I think.
  270. Uncle Fester from Canada writes:
    Precident dicates that when an unelected PM takes office that he must fact the electorate within 6 months.

    If the government falls, we are having an election........not matter what the GG decides.

    That is the one thing that we know for sure.
  271. john dancy from Canada writes: Bill Woodcock, I for one have said many times and do believe that credit is due. The two main parties in Canada are working together and that is when Canada works best. When the Conservatives and the Liberals work together it also makes the Bloc irrelevant. The people of Quebec use the Bloc to get special treatment. When the two parties work together no one needs 50 Bloc votes for anything.
    Canadians are smarter than we give each other credit for, we were not fooled by Mr Day 10 years or so ago and gave the Liberals another majority and it was the right decision. Now we have been picking Mr Harper..........
  272. Wayne Walker from Canada writes: Thank you John Dancy although it does not matter who the political masters were when the mortgages were issued. All parties have been guilty of pressuring CMHC to make poor loans at the wrong time. If there is a loss on these loans it is due to CMHC policy at the time the loans were made and has nothing to do with the transfer of ownership from the bank to the government and poor lord Cross chooses not to understand that. I don't know if he is politically motivated to misunderstand, is a conspiracy nut or just cannot understand financial matters.
  273. NL Patriot from Republic of Newfoundland, Canada writes: Philosopher King from Ivory Tower, Canada writes: NL Patriot from Republic of Newfoundland, Canada writes: '... Yes there is a fixed election law but it is not unconditional. The PM still holds the right to request an election, that right was never given up when the law was enacted...'

    This is nonsense double talk.

    The entire point of the legislation is to keep the Prime Minister from calling election's that benefit him politically.

    It's supposed to work even against a majority PM, so if a minority PM can call one out of the blue, the entire legislation is useless.

    Honestly, is there nothing you partisans won't twist into a lie?

    -------

    Actually it was my understanding that the reason this law was put in place was for Majority governments in particular. That is what all the reporters and pundints said was Harpers out, the fact he was a minority and sucessfully argued that parliment was disfunctional.

    I don't agree with that election but I also don't agree that it was illegal.
  274. lord cross of Blacks Harbour from BLACKS HARBOUR NB, Canada writes:
    Barry Turner from Ottawa, Canada writes:

    *Agree with everything you said* but I do have a reluctance to delay necessary program revisions any longer. We've already been treated to a do-nothing stance by Harper / Flairity with their [ E = FU] in November. He and his hordes fit the profile of sociopaths on a self-preservation gambit.
  275. john dancy from Canada writes: hangin right , political parties pay for their own adds. The reason you dont hear Liberal add's is they are broke.
    Skip past the vote tomorrow, the liberals will say they made the Conservatives spend wisely, These add's are to try and counter that.
    Politics is perception. The liberals made the deal weeks ago but have to try and have a public face that shows power and integrity. The Conservatives will try to also have a public face on.....
  276. Philosopher King from Ivory Tower, Canada writes: R. Carriere from Maritimes, Canada: My point Rob is that one does not call an election three months after the last one merely because a minority of MPs refuse to work with a majority who have agreed on a course of action.

    While I agree it is in a politician's interest to abide popular opinion, it should not supercede his/her responsibility to do what's right when they are more informed than the average voter on the issue at hand.

    God help us all if we ever convert to the sort of mob rule that governance by opinion polls would represent.
  277. Right Winger from Canada writes: hangin right from Van

    How do you figure that tax dollars were wasted? Those ads were paid for by the Conservative party, not tax dollars.
    Leave it to the anti-Harper crowd to spout misinformation. It's a common theme among you people. Happens on a daily basis here.
  278. J Kay from Canada writes: alyden donnely: While your numbers are correct concerning the debt that the Liberals at the beginning of their term added to the cumulative debt and your are further correct that in relative terms $65 billion today is less than it was then, your comment is still quite disingeuous or at the very least misguided.

    First the only reason the Liberals ran budget deficits during their first 3 years in power was because they were handed a $42 billion deficit by the Mulroney government. At $42 billion that deficit represented nearly 34% of the budget revenues, which was equivalent to ALL government program spending on departments and agencies, save defense. Thus it is beyond absurd to assume that the Liberals could have presented a budget in 94-95 that would have had a surplus. It took time to grow the revenues, such that they could exceed the expenditures and they did so way above expectations in 1994.

    The Conservatives recently, by comparison, inherited a budget that was in surplus and significantly so. They squandered that surplus - read Kevin Page's report - such that the country is going to be in deficit regardless if we have any stimulus spending or not; we will see a budget deficit this year before any on-balance sheet stimulus occurs. Off balance sheet we are currently are running a $34 billion deficit and have added $46 billion of new debt since April (as of October, likely more by now).

    To equate the two situations and suggest their is any equivalence, save numerically, is simply dishonest and I suspect disingenuous as well.
  279. NL Patriot from Republic of Newfoundland, Canada writes: Anne Peterson from Canada writes: If the coalition had been on the ballot I would have voted for it along with about 60% of Canadians I think

    ---------

    Anne you would have voted for the Bloc?

    I am sorry but if that coalition option had been on the Ballot or even if Layton and Dion had made their intentions known during the election I think the election results would have been much different.

    I suspect there would have been a strong Conservative majority and we wouldn't be blackmaled into this crazy so called stimulus budget.
  280. Right Winger from Canada writes: Anne Peterson from Canada writes: If the coalition had been on the ballot I would have voted for it along with about 60% of Canadians I think.
    ***********************
    You couldn't be more wrong. First thing, how can you speak for anyone other than yourself? And second, 1/3 of the coalition didn't have candidates running in 9 provinces and 3 territories.
  281. O Perdana from Canada writes: Total deficit (on & off balance sheet) is $129 Billion as per J Kay.
  282. Bill Woodcock from Canada writes: Free The West Free The West from A Vote For The Liberals Is a Vote For The Bloc., Canada writes: The greatest issue in Canadian politics today is the active role taken by the Toronto-based media in trying to usurp power for the Toronto-based Liberals. This has led to a non-stop campaign of contrived headlines and even outright lies from the sector of society that has been traditionally been given the trust of the public to present unbiased information. The G&M is by far the worst offender. I'm afraid the west will never be free with someone like 'Free the West' leading the way. What stupidity to say that media headlines are lies. I am listing a few 'lies' here and I would like you to give the answer as to who told the lies. Here we go....... I will never appoint anyone a senator who was not elected by the people....I will never appoint a cabinat minister who is not an elected member of the house.... I have brought this bill forward to prevent Prime Ministers of the future from calling elections simply because it is to their advantage.... I will never tax income trusts because it would hurt many seniors who have work their entire lives to have this security in retirement... My government will never run a deficit as long as we are the government....I will bring transparency to government.... I will have an open and honest government and Canadians will not have to deal with the closed backdoor policies of past governments.... Canada is not in a recession..... Canadians jobs are not at risk....Canadian financial instutions are on solid ground... There are many more, but Free The West. PLease do give a straight out answer without a bunch of excuses as to why these promises had to be turned into lies....
  283. john dancy from Canada writes: Wayne Walker , I think it was US who demanded the changes to the mortgage situation. I think we should make the banking laws part of the Charter. So no-one can screw with them.....
    A strong Canada comes from our strong banking laws our social safety nets and our good saving practices, [RRSP'S, and the new tax free account. ] Every grade 5 child should have a good grasp of these issues. Think of the wealthy barber......We do have very smart people here...
  284. Philosopher King from Ivory Tower, Canada writes: NL Patriot from Republic of Newfoundland, Canada writes: '... it was my understanding that the reason this law was put in place was for Majority governments in particular...'

    No, he broke his own law. On this you can't find a single constitional lawyer who disagrees.

    However, I will grant you that this is not the big deal everyone makes of it. The precident of a Prime Minster calling elections in the Westminster Model is entrenched by centuries of British and Canadian history.

    The situation simply proved that Harper's legislation was poorly crafted and failed to consider that just because the party in charge couldn't call an election didn't mean the opposition couldn't force one.
  285. Red Suspenders from The Big Chair, writes: Wayne Walker from Canada writes: I see that Mike Sty is still complaining about income trusts. Perhaps he should have considered suing his advisor because income trusts never were a suitable investment for seniors.

    ======================

    Riiiiight.

    Then it's too bad Harpo went out of his way to assure them he'd leave income trusts alone when he needed votes.

    If he had been honest then, a lot of people who relied on his word would not have lost millions when he flip-flopped, broke his promise, and p!ssed on people.
  286. lord cross of Blacks Harbour from BLACKS HARBOUR NB, Canada writes:
    Bill Woodcock from Canada writes:

    Perfect 285-word description of pathological liars.
  287. Red Suspenders from The Big Chair, writes: NL Patriot from Republic of Newfoundland, Canada writes: ...

    Actually it was my understanding that the reason this law was put in place was for Majority governments in particular. That is what all the reporters and pundints said was Harpers out, the fact he was a minority and sucessfully argued that parliment was disfunctional.

    I don't agree with that election but I also don't agree that it was illegal.

    ================

    1. The words of the legislation made no distinction between majority or minority.

    2. It explicity preserve the GG's authority.

    3. It implicitly confined the PM's authority.

    4. Numerous statements in and out of Parliament by the Conservative government touted 3.
  288. Jake The Snake from Canada writes: Bill M from Canada writes: Jake The Snake from Canada writes: Those con radio ads, the ones that are paid for by the loyal drones, are the height of cheeze. The radio actress with the annoyingly whiny voice saying, 'Remember all that talk about a coalition', making sure the Bloc is the first party mentioned even though they aren't a part of it, can you be any more transparent? Geeze, I better be careful or I might be invoking Godwin here. For fools and for suckers that's all there is to say. Money well spent? Well at least it's not my money, keep spending that war chest, great job! Actually, it is your money. Remember what started the whole coalition idea? The proposal to take away tax payer funding of political parties. The Cons get the payments too. So it's our money paying for the ads. feel better now? ================================================= Hey I'll admit it that is a hell of a point about public funding. I guess I'll have to console myself with the fact these idiots still think and spend like we're in an election. At this pace they'll whip through those taxpayer dollars in no time just like a...... um, well, conservative. I bet it is strange to hear that since Harper love strucks still hang onto this illusion that these bozos are responsible and prudent with taxpayers dollars. Oh well what's another mirage?
  289. Red Suspenders from The Big Chair, writes: Philosopher King from Ivory Tower, Canada writes: NL Patriot from Republic of Newfoundland, Canada writes: '... it was my understanding that the reason this law was put in place was for Majority governments in particular...'

    No, he broke his own law. On this you can't find a single constitional lawyer who disagrees.

    However, I will grant you that this is not the big deal everyone makes of it. The precident of a Prime Minster calling elections in the Westminster Model is entrenched by centuries of British and Canadian history.

    =====================

    There is no precedent for a PM so blatantly and flagrantly violating a law his own government passed.
  290. john dancy from Canada writes: J Kay, you are correct about the past but you missed the period before that. The GST was put in place to counter the growing deficit.
    On day three of Mr Chretien's first majority he slashed the transfer payments to the provinces. go check, That led to guys like Mr Harris being elected to do something about the provinces going broke now.
    Mr Chretien started the downloading......
    Oh ya , guess who has increased transfer payments to the provinces more than any other PM, your right , Mr Harper......no one on these boards likes to talk about that though.....
  291. Jake The Snake from Canada writes: Right Winger from Canada writes: hangin right from Van

    How do you figure that tax dollars were wasted? Those ads were paid for by the Conservative party, not tax dollars.
    Leave it to the anti-Harper crowd to spout misinformation. It's a common theme among you people. Happens on a daily basis here.

    ==================================================

    I guess there is a disagreement about who paid for those ads, you and Bill M should get your stories straight before posting. The cons are getting a little sloppy these days. I guess some rust has settled in. Oil can! Oil can!
  292. Bob B from Canada writes: A sampling of 100 answers starting from the first one down to the 100th counting all the replies:

    Results
    Out 0f 100 Liberals = 76% are Favourable 24% are ANTI
    Conservative = 12% are Favourable 78% are ANTI
    Not Sure = 12%
    If I were an Alliance turned Conservative I would think twice before
    being too arrogant.
  293. Bill Woodcock from Canada writes: NL Patriot from Republic of Newfoundland, Canada writes:
    I am sorry but if that coalition option had been on the Ballot or even if Layton and Dion had made their intentions known during the election I think the election results would have been much different.

    I suspect there would have been a strong Conservative majority and we wouldn't be blackmaled into this crazy so called stimulus budget......Patriot, had Harper admitted that there was a recession and shown that he had a positive plan to deal with it there would have been no need for a coalition to be formed. Layton and Dion had no more of a plan to form a coalition before or during the election than Harper had a plan to govern responsibly...

  294. Philosopher King from Ivory Tower, Canada writes: You know, for once I was hoping the CPC tendency for standing its ground might actually help Canadians.

    I mean let's be serious. The last guy I know who tried to spend his way out of a recession was Bob Rae. That worked out great didn't it? LOL

    We can spend until we're blue in the face, but until there is serious and trusted oversight of the institutions that fabricated or bought into the tens of trillions of dollars of valueless commercial papers created in the wake of their poorly considered lending practices, the economy can't recover.

    Afterall, investment and lending are the backbone of our new economy, and no one's going to take the risks out there today without huge payback, and some people not at all.

    Meanwhile, we're playing the little dutch-boy with our fingers in the dike.
  295. Red Suspenders from The Big Chair, writes: Right Winger from Canada writes: hangin right from Van

    How do you figure that tax dollars were wasted? Those ads were paid for by the Conservative party, not tax dollars.

    ========================

    Donations to political parties earn the donor a tax credit equal to about 75% of the donation. This tax credit comes directly out of the bottom line of government revenue. Accordingly, taxpayers are funding 75% of all amounts donated to political parties, of which the CPC is the leading beneficiary at this time.
  296. john dancy from Canada writes: Red Suspenders, if the law was broken there would not have been an election.......a calculated risk, but it worked. Compared to the green shift it was minuscule. The people of Canada agreed. once again pure genius!!
  297. R. Carriere from Maritimes, Canada writes:

    Anne Peterson from Canada writes: If the coalition had been on the ballot I would have voted for it along with about 60% of Canadians I think.
    -----------
    While that may be your 'feelling' it is far from fact.

    A Nanos poll was done THIS month:

    QUESTION: In the case where the federal budget is defeated, would you prefer (ROTATE) that an election be called or that the opposition be invited to form a government?

    Answer:

    49% Want an election
    42% want the opposition to form the government
    10% unsure

    With the exception of Quebec, (gee-I wonder $$$ why?) every Province and region would want an election over a coalition.

    http://www.nanosresearch.com/library/polls/POLNAT-F08-T350.pdf

    In the 2008 election 54.42% of the electorate voted either Liberal, NDP, or Bloc. One would figure if the coalition TRULY represented the will of the people who voted for them, these numbers would be considerably higher.

    That is why it will not happen. IGGY is smarter than that!
    .
  298. Red Suspenders from The Big Chair, writes: john dancy from Canada writes: Red Suspenders, if the law was broken there would not have been an election.......

    ===============

    Huhn?
  299. Philosopher King from Ivory Tower, Canada writes: Red Suspenders from The Big Chair, writes: '...There is no precedent for a PM so blatantly and flagrantly violating a law his own government passed...'

    Well sure, but then every Prime Minister since Pearson has found a new way to break a law, abuse a power or look like a tool while in office.

    Why should Harper be any different?
  300. john dancy from Canada writes: Bill Woodcock , Election night , 10pm Mr Rae is asked by Mr Mansbridge what he thinks of the results and Mr Rae says on the CBC, ' we have a plan to fix this, we will not let this result stand.'
    He WAS talking about the coalition.............
  301. Brian C from Canada writes:
    To Red Suspenders who writes: 'Accordingly, taxpayers are funding 75% of all amounts donated to political parties, of which the CPC is the leading beneficiary at this time.'

    So.... now you agree that taxpayer funding of political parties should be stopped. 2 months ago your dear leader got so upset about the ending of taxpayer money flowing through to political parties that he cobbled together the coalition.

    You deserve the LPT. You're so much like them. You stand firmly on both sides of every issue. You complain that the CPC is spending too much, and you complain that the deficit is too big. Pathetic!
  302. Philosopher King from Ivory Tower, Canada writes: john dancy from Canada writes: Red Suspenders, if the law was not broken there would not have been an election.......a calculated risk, but it worked. Compared to the green shift it was minuscule. The people of Canada agreed. once again pure genius!!

    Lowering the expectations of voters now considered genius?

    Harper didn't keep his word. The underwhelming reaction shows a lack of shock at this fact.

    Twist that as you will.
  303. J Kay from Canada writes: jonh dancy: Regardless of what the rhetoric was at the time to sell the GST to the Canadian people, the GST was not put in place to deal with the deficits, nor did it have the slightest effect. The GST wasn't a new tax, it was a replacement tax for the FST and it was revenue neutral. That is it brought in no additional revenue compared to the FST. In fact on another thread recently I demonstrated that the GST was slightly revenue negative, bringing in LESS revenue than the FST in it's first 5 years of existence in nominal terms and has never surpassed that growth adjusted revenue of the FST.

    The GST did nothing to help balance the budgets during the Liberal years, but many Conservatives like to suggest such so that 'their' guy can take some measure of credit for the balancing of the budget.

    The rationale for the GST is sound, don't get me wrong and over the very long view, it is likely that the FST revenues would have declined to the point where the GST did bring in more revenue but that wasn't the case during the first 10 years of the GST and thus it had zero impact on increasing the budget revenues.
  304. john dancy from Canada writes: Philosopher King, If we are going to be real then you are right. We cant spend our way out. When M Rae spent 30 billion to bail out the teachers pension plan it was against a 100 billion dollar budget.
    This 30 billion is against 500 billion a year we spend federally.
    Not quite as bad. but it wont help. Only we can put our own houses back in shape and that will take time....
    Cheers
  305. NL Patriot from Republic of Newfoundland, Canada writes: Bill Woodcock from Canada writes:Patriot, had Harper admitted that there was a recession and shown that he had a positive plan to deal with it there would have been no need for a coalition to be formed. Layton and Dion had no more of a plan to form a coalition before or during the election than Harper had a plan to govern responsibly...

    --------

    Bill I didn't say that they did have a plan to form a coalition. In fact Dion explicitly stated that he had no intention to form a coalition with the NDP.

    That being said, I agree that Harper was hiding something about the economy but denying we were in a recession was not factually inaccurate. Considering we haven't officially posted recession numbers, 2 consecutive contracting quarters.

    I think Harper would have been wise to speak of a possible and probable recession and given a plan to battle it then he may have actually gotten his majority.

    However there is no doubt that Layton has been plotting to defeat the government even before the votes were counted. He sees this as the NDP's best shot at power.
  306. john dancy from Canada writes: Red Suspenders, hahaha sorry. Mr Harper would not have been able to have an election if it was illegal. He did change his mind about how often we should have one but really, name a PM who always follow what they say.......
  307. Paul Krysztofiak from Brantford, Canada writes: The way I see it. Harper is forced to bring a deficit laden budget by the opposition - now Libs squawk at middle income tax cuts.

    If Iggy votes the budget down I hope GG sends us to the polls.

    Also if the coalition goes through how will NDP/LIB campaign in the next election or they plan to buy Bloq and have the coalition running for next 50 years?
  308. R. Carriere from Maritimes, Canada writes:

    Philosopher King writes: My point Rob is that one does not call an election three months after the last one merely because a minority of MPs refuse to work with a majority who have agreed on a course of action.
    ----
    Your point is well taken. In terms of another elelction within 6 months, former GG had this to say (probably after having consulted experts:)

    ' In her autobiography, Heart Matters,Clarkson candidly reveals that she would have rejected a request from former Liberal prime minister Paul Martin if he had attempted, within six months of winning his minority government in the 2004 election, to dissolve Parliament and call another election.

    'To put the Canadian people through an election before six months would have been irresponsible, and in that case, I would have decided in favour of the good of the Canadian people and denied dissolution,'

    6 months will be up in April 2009. Iggy will wait.

    http://www.canada.com/ottawacitizen/news/story.html?id=55b5ecb7-76ef-4b1f-ba2d-f8326a2ec509
    .
  309. Dragline 62 from GTA, Canada writes: Anne Peterson from Canada writes: If the coalition had been on the ballot I would have voted for it along with about 60% of Canadians I think.
    =================================================
    I guess you haven't heard any of the polls showing Canadians at about 70% against a coalition on average. All these people who think a coalition will happen are about to go through the same letdown they had when they found out there is no Santa Claus. lol
    A guy can get rich selling crying towels to the Mike Sty's etc. who make up this group.
  310. Still Learning at 78 from Canada writes: john dancy from Canada writes:'Mr Harper is the longest serving minority PM in Canadian history. He must be very good at it......'
    Yes you are right, below are some of Mr Harpers accomplishments---.

    In and Out, Bernier, Income Trusts, Security Leaks, Funding Cuts for Women's Rights, Cadman Affair, Attack Ads, Frigates, Homophobia, Right to Life, Water Sales, Unregistered Firearms, Kyoto Accord, Kelowna Accord, Biker Broad, Listeria Outbreak, Looming Deficite, Fort PMO, John Baird, Big Oil, Bush Jr., Transparency, Accountability, $100.00 annual Daycare Costs, Afghanistan, CBC Funding Cuts, Cultural Funding Cuts, Conservative label used by Reformists, Tailings ponds, Pristine lakes, Mutant Fish, Zenn Vehicles, Taser Deaths, Religeous Fundamentalists, Attending Democratic Convention in US, Absent at Olympics, GG told to Forego Paralympics, Internet Copyright Legislation, Mulroney Affair, Nobel Winners Ignored, Only Bush Calls SH Steve, Atlantic Accord, Rona Ambrose, Information Data Base, Militarization of Arctic, Outsourcing Policy Research, Fixed Election Date, Ambassador's reports on Human Rights Overseas Made Secret, Attempt to Stop Same Sex Marriage, Advertisement Budget Doubled, Almost All Legislation Posed as Confidence Motion, Support for Biofuel, Insufficient Support of Alternative Energy, Failure to protect Canadians Abroad, Support for Guantanamo, Lost Nato Documents, Wheat Board Muzzled, Caucus Muzzled, Ontario Ignored, Canadians Executed in America, Cancelled National Childcare, Fired Nuclear Watchdog, Embarassment on World Stage.'
  311. Philosopher King from Ivory Tower, Canada writes: J Kay from Canada: I find it hard to understand how a tax (MST) only collected from Canadian manufacturers at a rate of 13.5% could possibly come close to collecting as much as a tax (GST) that is charged on ALL goods and services bought or sold in the entire country at a rate of 7%.
  312. J Kay from Canada writes: john dancy: To address the other parts of your comments. Yes the Chretien/Martin government cut transfers to the provinces. During their first year they cut transfers to the provinces by $600 million or just over 2%. The provinces similarly cut transfers to the municipalities. You should note that during the entire time the federal government was decreasing transfers to the provinces, provincial revenues overall did not decline. That is the growth in provincial revenues exceeded the minor cuts being imposed by the then Liberal government.

    Second you are wrong about who provided the greatest increase in transfers to the provinces. The government that did that was the Liberal government in the 2003 budget; transfers increased from $29.3 billionto $41.9 billion or 43%. This was done to reverse the cuts that had occurred during the previous years and to bring the transfer funding back to the inflation adjusted levels that preceded the cuts in 1995. The Harper government has continued to increase transfers on average about 5% per annum since 2006 but they have not provided the largest increases in history nor were their reasons for doing so valid as Martin had already done so; i.e. to reverse the cuts.
  313. Mimi Williams from Edmonton, Canada writes: Uncle Fester from Canada writes:
    Precident dicates that when an unelected PM takes office that he must fact the electorate within 6 months.

    If the government falls, we are having an election........not matter what the GG decides.

    That is the one thing that we know for sure.



    Wrong. On all counts.
  314. john dancy from Canada writes: Philosopher King, J kay, The GST has far surpassed the fst revenues. Really, if it was neutral the Liberals would have gotten rid of it. I am only trying to say that there is always a bit of the past administration that is good, but the new power cant actually say that now can they. Mr Chretien cutting transfer payments worked. but I doubt Mr Harper would ever say it.
    The GST was supposed to be a first step and cutting down income tax was to come. In Australia they went to a more consumption type system and the talk of the day was we should too.
    Mr Chretien used the GST brilliantly to bring down the Conservatives.
    But he did not get rid of it....pure genius. good politics. see i am fair.
  315. Philosopher King from Ivory Tower, Canada writes: R. Carriere from Maritimes, Canada writes: '... 6 months will be up in April 2009. Iggy will wait...'

    Darn right. He wants to wear this recession/coalition/budget like he wants to wear a tutu and dance the can can on national television.

    He'll make noise, complain, and then support the budget 'for the good of the nation'.

    Then behind closed doors he'll wipe his brow and thank god dodging that bullet.

    My real surprise is at the willingness of Harper to wear this whole thing.
  316. marlene stobbart from High River, Canada writes: This article was concise and informative and without reading the other comments I would like to express my opinion. Canada's political mayhem and world economic crisis brought real peoples attention to what is required for change. Harpers gov't sought advice throughout the country from people, corporation leaders and provincial gov'ts. Their fiscal plan will be the best of all worlds which will include the middle class needs; afterall they are the engine without which we will be in a total depression. Importantly, the plan will cover Canada's infrastructure needs of the 21st century.
    IMHO those party leaders who will not support the Federal budget Tuesday are living in the last century. Canada is not a Communistic or Socialistic country but a country who honors and includes all people without a governments heavy hand. Should the Liberal party choose not to support the budget, with an immediate election called, I doubt if people across Canada would support them in their politics with their apparent gross negligence of Canada's needs. People are tired of all this nonsense! People are cross country are extremely worried, frankly many are scared of their own financial uncertainty. Canada needs to move ahead and the media needs good topics to write or talk about. Thank you.
  317. Philosopher King from Ivory Tower, Canada writes: john dancy from Canada writes: '... The GST was supposed to be a first step and cutting down income tax was to come...'

    Seems we can agree on something.

    As a long time supporter of Michael Wilson and Paul Martin, I can certainly agree this was the point, and any fiscal conservative worth his salt understands why this is such an important tax policy for Canada.
  318. lord cross of Blacks Harbour from BLACKS HARBOUR NB, Canada writes:

    Still Learning at 78 from Canada writes:

    I don't think your list is complete by any means. Obviously you've done a lot of work to demonstrate the pathology of the Harper Team.

    If you're still learning at 78, by the time you become an octogenarian you could well set the speed record for reading. Tell me, can you get the monitor to scroll down by thinking, 'forward ready?'
  319. J Kay from Canada writes: Philospher King: While I understand that it may seem implausible or be difficult to grasp, the revenues speak for themselves. Recall that the GST also has low income credits, which reduces the revenues collected for the government - these are recorded on a net basis, as were the FST revenues.

    I posted some analysis under the thread about Ontario looking at harmonization - they're toward the end - where I provide the numbers and some brief analysis.

    Over time, I suspect that growth in FST revenues would have started to decline. That said, the growth rate in FST revenues in the ten years prior to the GST were averaging 12% per annum annualised, whereas the GST revenues have averaged 5.6% growth annualised from 1991-2006. I've left off the latter two years due to the changes in tax rates.

    I'll try to get you a more detailed comparison of the revenues to illustrate the comparative revenue streams later today.
  320. Philosopher King from Ivory Tower, Canada writes: J Kay from Canada: I don't doubt your analysis, I'm just surprised by the facts.
  321. Red Suspenders from The Big Chair, writes: Paul Krysztofiak from Brantford, Canada writes: The way I see it. Harper is forced to bring a deficit laden budget by the opposition - now Libs squawk at middle income tax cuts.

    ================

    What hooey!

    How is he 'forced'?

    He's absolutely free to make a stand on principles, if he had any.

    Anyway, Flapper was all gung-ho about stimulus at the G20 meeting before the mendatious and dilatory 'fiscal update', so this wild spending is perfectly in line with something the rotten Cons thought of doing themselves, but didn't.
  322. Mimi Williams from Edmonton, Canada writes: NL Patriot from Republic of Newfoundland, Canada writes: I don't agree with that election but I also don't agree that it was illegal. ____________ So, do you agree that it was disingenuous and manipulative? Do a quick search for news articles around the bill. No where did the Conservatives qualify this legislation, except to assure Canadians that they could still be defeated in a non-confidence motion. No such motion occurred last summer. “Canadian families work hard, pay their taxes and play by the rules – and they expect their government to do the same.” From the Conservatives’ website. How card-carrying Conservatives can allow this is beyond me. Really. Harper wants fixed dates for federal elections May. 27 2006 CTV.ca 'Fixed election dates stop leaders from trying to manipulate the calendar,' Harper told reporters in Victoria, B.C. on Friday. 'They level the playing field for all parties.' The bill will be introduced next week and proposes to set fixed election dates every four years. The next election would be set for fall of 2009. __________ Bill setting federal elections every 4 years about to become law May 2, 2007 CBC News The Senate has passed a bill that will require federal elections to be held every four years. The proposed legislation, Bill C-16, which is scheduled to receive royal assent on Thursday, would mean Oct. 19, 2009, is the date of the next general election. After the bill is proclaimed into law, opposition parties will still have the power to force an election earlier than the fixed date if a minority government is defeated in a confidence vote. Once the bill becomes law, Prime Minister Stephen Harper will not be able to call an election on his own. 'Fixed election dates will improve the fairness of Canada's electoral system by eliminating the ability of governing parties to manipulate the timing of elections for partisan advantage,' he said in a news release on May 30, 2006.
  323. Compos Mentis from in the Darwinian, Wild West..., Canada writes: Mr X from Edmonton, Canada writes: ''the partisan gamesmanship that turned its last economic foray into a near-fatal political crisis. ' - Kind of a false statement when we know thy planned the coalition in advance. '

    Mr X, in every minority government situation, a coalition is simply one of the many options available to parliament (and the GG) to make government work. It has always been there.

    The planning of it is no more nefarious than the opposition planning on voting down a government Bill.
  324. Red Suspenders from The Big Chair, writes: Brian C from Canada writes:
    To Red Suspenders who writes: 'Accordingly, taxpayers are funding 75% of all amounts donated to political parties, of which the CPC is the leading beneficiary at this time.'

    So.... now you agree that taxpayer funding of political parties should be stopped. ...

    ======================

    You should read more carefully. I didn't offer an opinon on that. All I did was explain to you the effect of a policy that seemingly was not being taken into account.
  325. J Kay from Canada writes: john dancy: If you believe that too be true, I would like you to provide some numbers to support your view. I've spent quite a bit of time analysing the revenue streams and I am quite confident that the GST has not brought in more revenue than the FST. It certainly didn't bring in more revenue that the FST in it's first 5 years in nominal terms compared to the last year of the FST. In real terms, it took 9 years before the GST surpassed the last year of the FST, however those revenues don't grow at inflation adjusted levels, but nominal GDP rates. Adjusting the last year of the FST for the growth in nominal GDP, the GST has never surpassed it.

    You can argue that the FST revenues would have declined eventually due to changes in our economy toward a more service based on, or that the GST provided efficiency improvements that allowed our economy to grow, but both of those are theoretical arguments with no empirical support. I happen to alrgely agree with them in theory BUT they did not have immediate effect, nor has their effect been such that the GST revenues outgrew the FST ones, during the time in which the budget was balanced.

    As such until you can provide actual observed empricial numbers and solid analysis, not speculative claims based on theory, I maintain that I'm in fact absolutely correct on this issue.

  326. Red Suspenders from The Big Chair, writes: Philosopher King from Ivory Tower, Canada writes: Red Suspenders from The Big Chair, writes: '...There is no precedent for a PM so blatantly and flagrantly violating a law his own government passed...'

    Well sure, but then every Prime Minister since Pearson has found a new way to break a law, abuse a power or look like a tool while in office.

    Why should Harper be any different?

    ==============================

    I believe you are doing a disservice to several past PMs, who despite looking like tools, did not break a law to do so.
  327. lord cross of Blacks Harbour from BLACKS HARBOUR NB, Canada writes:
    marlene stobbart from High River, Canada writes:

    *A critique directed at 'managing the news' which would cause George Orwell to gasp.*

    Sorry, marlene, your idea has already been partially implemented by the Harperoony government.

    How's Heinrich? Is he still the head of the propaganda department out there? Lost any more equipment operators in the 145 sq. km. tailings 'pond' at McSludge lately? Wide consultation ... Calling forward as many resources of similar mind as possible. Like I said, Orwell would gasp.
  328. Stan L from Canada writes: Dragline 62 from GTA, Canada writes: Anne Peterson from Canada writes: If the coalition had been on the ballot I would have voted for it along with about 60% of Canadians I think.
    =================================================
    I guess you haven't heard any of the polls showing Canadians at about 70% against a coalition on average. All these people who think a coalition will happen are about to go through the same letdown they had when they found out there is no Santa Claus. lol

    Sorry Dragline, Anne is correct. the 70% against figure was indeed correct before Christmas. But in the polls released just last week, it seems the public has grown in acceptance of the coalition to the tune of about 60% for....one has to presume that this is the reason for the recent spate of attacks ads from the ever mature Harper.
  329. john dancy from Canada writes: marlene stobbart, I agree completely. The deal was made weeks ago and the two main parties are working together. You cant blame them for trying to take credit though. There will be an election sometime in the future......
  330. I'm Stephen Harper and I'm not Lion from China writes: Still Learning at 78 from Canada writes: john dancy from Canada writes:'Mr Harper is the longest serving minority PM in Canadian history. He must be very good at it......'
    Yes you are right, below are some of Mr Harpers accomplishments---.

    In and Out, Bernier, Income Trusts, Security Leaks, Funding Cuts for Women's Rights, Cadman Affair, Attack Ads, Frigates, Homophobia, Right to Life, Water Sales, Unregistered Firearms, Kyoto Accord, Kelowna Accord, Biker Broad, Listeria Outbreak, Looming Deficite, Fort PMO, John Baird, Big Oil, Bush Jr., Transparency, Accountability, $100.00 annual Daycare Costs, Afghanistan, CBC Funding Cuts, Cultural Funding Cuts, Conservative label used by Reformists, Tailings ponds, Pristine lakes, Mutant Fish, Zenn Vehicles, Taser Deaths, Religeous Fundamentalists, Attending Democratic Convention in US, Absent at Olympics, GG told to Forego Paralympics, Internet Copyright Legislation, Mulroney Affair, Nobel Winners Ignored, Only Bush Calls SH Steve, Atlantic Accord, Rona Ambrose, Information Data Base, Militarization of Arctic, Outsourcing Policy Research, Fixed Election Date, Ambassador's reports on Human Rights Overseas Made Secret, Attempt to Stop Same Sex Marriage, Advertisement Budget Doubled, Almost All Legislation Posed as Confidence Motion, Support for Biofuel, Insufficient Support of Alternative Energy, Failure to protect Canadians Abroad, Support for Guantanamo, Lost Nato Documents, Wheat Board Muzzled, Caucus Muzzled, Ontario Ignored, Canadians Executed in America, Cancelled National Childcare, Fired Nuclear Watchdog, Embarassment on World Stage
    --------------------------

    Pretty thick blinders on all the Harpertards not to see the definite mis-functioning gene in the CRAPer dna.
  331. john dancy from Canada writes: Philosopher King , I voted for them myself. They did a good job and Canadians saw that. And I think they see a good job being done now. Next year, well we will see. We have not really gotten to hear Mr Ignatief yet. I hope he is the leader some think the credentials offer....
  332. john dancy from Canada writes: I'm Stephen Harper and I'm not Lion from China, so the fact that your fellow Canadians voted him in twice and the Liberal party is going to agree with him on the budget with the support of 70% of Canadians, means we are all wrong? please explain....I dont get it
  333. R. Carriere from Maritimes, Canada writes:

    Philosopher King from Ivory Tower, Canada writes: You know, for once I was hoping the CPC tendency for standing its ground might actually help Canadians.

    I mean let's be serious. The last guy I know who tried to spend his way out of a recession was Bob Rae. That worked out great didn't it? LOL

    My real surprise is at the willingness of Harper to wear this whole thing.
    --------
    PK: The more I read about the details, the more I think the NDP won the last elelction! Pathetic over-spending! The CPC caved to the almighty 'let's make panic' media via the socialists.

    As for Harper 'wearing the whole thing.'....Hmmm, let's wait and see the complete details and how many poison pills are included. Remember 1974? That old fox Trudeau admitedly engineered his own budget defeat--then came back with a majority! This should be VERY interesting!
    .
  334. J Kay from Canada writes: Philosopher King: I understand. Philosophically I agree with you that the GST was the right thing to do and that over a long time frame I would expect FST revenue growth to drop below economic growth, such that eventually the GST would bring in more revenue on a comparable basis but that definitely wasn't the case during the early Liberal government years where they balanced the budget and moreover based on the more extensive analysis I've done in the past, it doesn't even yet appear to be the case, though the recent GST rate reductions make comparisons into the future complicated using revenues directly.

    I think part of it is that while the GST is applied broadly, it isn't applied to all goods. Moreover it is somewhat fair to say it isn't applied to essentials, which as a result means that only a fraction of people's spending is effected by the GST. For those on the lower end of the income bracket that fraction is significantly lower than those on the upper end, but given that most people have a significant misconception of the income distribution in Canada - you are in the top 3-4% for example based on past comments of yours - I suspect that a somewhat sizable portion of Canadian after tax spending is GST exempt.

    lunch time.
  335. Still Learning at 78 from Canada writes: lord cross of Blacks Harbour from BLACKS HARBOUR NB, Canada writes:
    'Still Learning at 78 from Canada writes:
    I don't think your list is complete by any means. Obviously you've done a lot of work to demonstrate the pathology of the Harper Team
    If you're still learning at 78, by the time you become an octogenarian you could well set the speed record for reading. Tell me, can you get the monitor to scroll down by thinking, 'forward ready?''

    Simple answer is Good Memory---1Gigabyte long.
  336. Gord Lewis from No Tory Like an Old Tory ..., Canada writes: I'm Stephen Harper and I'm not Lion from China writes: . . .
    Yes you are right, below are some of Mr Harpers accomplishments---.
    ................................................................................................

    I think you may have omitted Flaherty & The Ontario Mafia. But that's understandable in such a long list of accomplishments . . .
  337. Philosopher King from Ivory Tower, Canada writes: '...every Prime Minister since Pearson has found a new way to break a law, abuse a power or look like a tool while in office... Why should Harper be any different?...'

    Red Suspenders writes: '... I believe you are doing a disservice to several past PMs, who despite looking like tools, did not break a law to do so...'

    Criticism comes with the territory as PM.

    We elect leaders to cut through the red tape and do what needs to be done despite the rules, and then lambast them for doing so.

    Every time, practically without exception.

    That the Prime Minister broke his own election law was certainly self defeating and hypocritical, but the long established legal precident protect him from repurcussions.

    It's really only the court of public opinion that constrained him, and apparently that has as little sway as the law with Mr. Harper.
  338. Harold K. from Windsor, ON, Canada writes: Not to sound 'conservative' - I am not; I am a pragmatic centerist - but 1 billion $ for 'social housing rennovation' sounds ill-advised. I say this not to 'pick on' lower income or disabled individuals, but to wonder if retaining and maintaining government-owned housing is generally a good idea. Somebody correct me, but aren't there more effective ways to help these folks? (e.g., rental suppliments - but for a limited duration, unless the person is severly disabled) Also, in my experience, 'social housing' currently tends to be a bureaucratic mess of programs, often with no clear transparency and fairness built in. Some individuals seem to know the 'system', so get cheap housing 'for life', whereas others who don't know the system, or aren't in the right area or category -- e.g., single parent -- do not get it (even if their situation warrants help, more than many how receive social housing). The key point is a fair, open, and transparent system which is as efficient (most bang for the $) as possible. Right now, it appears to be a bit of black hole, which is not what we need to right the economy or provide a broader safety net for the SHORT-term. (The last thing we need is more individual become 'addicted' to relying on mama gov't.) Cheers. PS. I may be sounding conservative on this issue - those how know my posts know that I am not - because I have experience seeking social housing many years ago. I never received it, but that is not my beef: I was especially jaded by how unfair and uneven the system 'works' (though, maybe that is only in Toronto).
  339. Philosopher King from Ivory Tower, Canada writes: R. Carriere from Maritimes, Canada writes: '... let's wait and see the complete details and how many poison pills are included. Remember 1974? That old fox Trudeau admitedly engineered his own budget defeat--then came back with a majority! This should be VERY interesting!...'

    With Ignatieff in the mix now, it should be interesting indeed, though to some degree things are a little more constricuted than in '74.
  340. sheila ross from Vancouver, Canada writes: Hollow Harper the lip-stick man is all about 'appearances' Think how tortuous it must be for him to actually commit to DOING something. And that is why he must be voted down, no matter what is in this budget. Think of this exercise as his punishment, all this running around and actually listening and consulting. Now that he's suffered some, the liberals will just take the reins, 'You are allowed to go now, Hollow man, run along.'
  341. MyCanada MyLove from Canada writes: (00) *WOW ... a western action-reaction???* By Don Martin, Calgary Herald January 26, 2009 *There's a perverse logic .... to having the stealth release of that painful deficit projection ... even before MPs regroup for ... budget.* 'Parliament, you see, has become a realm where radical change is the new normal. Traditional protocol and processes no longer apply. The last 72 hours have featured an unprecedented cross-Canada blitz of ministerial announcements as the federal government acclimatizes the taxpayer to deficit financing and releases its procurement list piecemeal the better to get a bigger bang for every borrowed buck. It is, in essence, a co-ordinated government violation of budget secrecy and makes a mockery of its paranoia over leaks, a phobia illustrated by the total employee lockdown at the Ottawa plant where the 292-page document is being printed today. It matters little to Canadians if the actual budget rolls forth Tuesday as a collection of old news, of course. It actually makes perfect sense from a media manipulation standpoint. Why waste exposure for so many billion-dollar announcements in one budget when every initiative could receive big-news treatment on its own if slipped out in advance? Besides, nobody plays by the old rules anymore, the most notorious rule-changer being a true-blue Reform-turned-Alliance-turned-Conservative leader named Stephen Harper who is poised to embrace the Red Shift of fiscal policy by spending billions he no longer has to combat a deepening recession he can no longer deny.' (oo)
  342. Harold K. from Windsor, ON, Canada writes: Not to sound 'conservative' - I am not; I am a pragmatic centerist - but 1 billion $ for 'social housing rennovation' sounds ill-advised. I say this not to 'pick on' lower income or disabled individuals, but to wonder if retaining and maintaining government-owned housing is generally a good idea. Somebody correct me, but aren't there more effective ways to help these folks? (e.g., rental suppliments - but for a limited duration, unless the person is severly disabled) Also, in my experience, 'social housing' currently tends to be a bureaucratic mess of programs, often with no clear transparency and fairness built in. Some individuals seem to know the 'system', so get cheap housing 'for life', whereas others who don't know the system, or aren't in the right area or category -- e.g., single parent -- do not get it (even if their situation warrants help, more than many how receive social housing). My key point is, that prior to investing big $$, there needs to be a fair, open, and transparent system which has been demonstrated to be as efficient (most bang for the $) as possible. Right now, it appears to be a bit of black hole, which is not what we need to right the economy or provide a broader safety net for the SHORT-term. (The last thing we need is more individual become 'addicted' to relying on mama gov't.) I realize that this is a provincial/municipal responsibility, but if the feds are going to do some funding, surely they can have a say – at least in reforming the system. Cheers. PS. I may be sounding conservative on this issue - those how know my posts know that I am not - because I have experience seeking social housing many years ago. I never received it, but that is not my beef: I was especially jaded by how unfair and uneven the system 'works' (though, maybe that is only in Toronto).
  343. Gord Lewis from No Tory Like an Old Tory ..., Canada writes: Harold K. from Windsor, ON, Canada writes: Not to sound 'conservative' - I am not; I am a pragmatic centerist - but 1 billion $ for 'social housing rennovation' sounds ill-advised. I say this not to 'pick on' lower income or disabled individuals, but to wonder if retaining and maintaining government-owned housing is generally a good idea. . . .

    ................................................................................................

    Having lived in such 'townhouse developments' for short times, I have come to regard 'social housing' as code for 'prefab slums'. Besides the bureaucratic tangle of waste you describe, it is a mainly a cash grab for builders (in the same way 'foreign aid' is a subsidy for domestic corporations) and the management companies that eventually inherit them. The quality is crap and the rapid community degeneration has given high density row housing a bad name in Canada. It can actually provide a high quality, safer, and certainly more environmentally sustainable living environment when done well.
  344. bilbo baggins from Canada writes: The coalition was a last ditch effort by Dion to weasel / back door into power. He was seduced by Layton and then Duceppe stopped laughing long enough to join in and 'support' it. Thank God the Liberal party finally put a bullet into Dion and ended the farce. It was NEVER going to happen.
  345. Harold K. from Windsor, ON, Canada writes: sorry about the 2nd posting at 12:19pm - I had hoped that my formating (imported from Word) would work.

    maybe it is my brouser, Explorer, or my relatively slow laptop...
  346. Philosopher King from Ivory Tower, Canada writes: J Kay from Canada writes: '... while the GST is applied broadly, it isn't applied to all goods... it's fair to say it isn't applied to essentials, which as a result means that only a fraction of people's spending is effected by the GST...'

    Which also means of course that the largest contribution group is those with the highest disposable incomes, making the GST cuts a taxcut for those with lots of money to burn.

    Hardly makes any sense given that the spending habits of this tax group does not vary much based on taxation or the economy.

    So the CPC gave up about $12 billion in revenue for essentially no effect, to people who won't alter their spending as a result, which coincidentally is how much of a deficit we have today before 'stimulus' spending is factored in.

    Michael Wilson must be tearing his hair out.
  347. Jason Roy from Central Nova - After October 14th AKA STILL Peter Mackay Country, Canada writes: I'm Stephen Harper and I'm not Lion from China writes: Still Learning at 78 from Canada writes: john dancy from Canada writes:'Mr Harper is the longest serving minority PM in Canadian history. He must be very good at it......' Yes you are right, below are some of Mr Harpers accomplishments---. In and Out, Bernier, Income Trusts, Security Leaks, Funding Cuts for Women's Rights, Cadman Affair, Attack Ads, Frigates, Homophobia, Right to Life, Water Sales, Unregistered Firearms, Kyoto Accord, Kelowna Accord, Biker Broad, Listeria Outbreak, Looming Deficite, Fort PMO, John Baird, Big Oil, Bush Jr., Transparency, Accountability, $100.00 annual Daycare Costs, Afghanistan, CBC Funding Cuts, Cultural Funding Cuts, Conservative label used by Reformists, Tailings ponds, Pristine lakes, Mutant Fish, Zenn Vehicles, Taser Deaths, Religeous Fundamentalists, Attending Democratic Convention in US, Absent at Olympics, GG told to Forego Paralympics, Internet Copyright Legislation, Mulroney Affair, Nobel Winners Ignored, Only Bush Calls SH Steve, Atlantic Accord, Rona Ambrose, Information Data Base, Militarization of Arctic, Outsourcing Policy Research, Fixed Election Date, Ambassador's reports on Human Rights Overseas Made Secret, Attempt to Stop Same Sex Marriage, Advertisement Budget Doubled, Almost All Legislation Posed as Confidence Motion, Support for Biofuel, Insufficient Support of Alternative Energy, Failure to protect Canadians Abroad, Support for Guantanamo, Lost Nato Documents, Wheat Board Muzzled, Caucus Muzzled, Ontario Ignored, Canadians Executed in America, Cancelled National Childcare, Fired Nuclear Watchdog, Embarassment on World Stage -------------------------- Pretty thick blinders on all the Harpertards not to see the definite mis-functioning gene in the CRAPer dna. ------------------------------------- Hey Sty - if you're going to change you name change your writing style as well, putz!
  348. sheila ross from Vancouver, Canada writes: Bilbo, it is not very reasonable to claim Dion lusted after power, since he had already resigned his leadership. It is much more reasonable to accept that he joined the C. because he was outraged, as many of us still are, that a man of such shallow character can be PM of this country. And you seem to overlook the fact that all liberals signed on the coalition. The coalition, if nothing else, expresses a measure of disgust.

    Harper can't be trusted.
  349. sheila ross from Vancouver, Canada writes: ...Not to mention his incompetence, as Jason Roy ennumerates. Let me put it this way: Conservatives can do better.
  350. Red Suspenders from The Big Chair, writes: Philosopher King from Ivory Tower, Canada writes: '...every Prime Minister since Pearson has found a new way to break a law, abuse a power or look like a tool while in office... Why should Harper be any different?...'

    Red Suspenders writes: '... I believe you are doing a disservice to several past PMs, who despite looking like tools, did not break a law to do so...'

    Criticism comes with the territory as PM. ...

    ===============

    Some of it fact-based, and clearly some not.
  351. Garibaldi III from TO from Canada writes: john dancy from Canada writes: Philosopher King , I voted for them myself. They did a good job and Canadians saw that. And I think they see a good job being done now.
    -----

    'The new Italian Job'

    ...being promoted as we speak....

    ............................:-)
  352. Red Suspenders from The Big Chair, writes: sheila ross from Vancouver, Canada writes: ...Not to mention his incompetence, as Jason Roy ennumerates. Let me put it this way: Conservatives can do better.

    =============

    Even the Conservatives can do better.
  353. Garibaldi III from TO from Canada writes: Red Suspenders from The Big Chair, writes: sheila ross from Vancouver, Canada writes: ...Not to mention his incompetence, as Jason Roy ennumerates. Let me put it this way: Conservatives can do better.
    =============
    Even the Conservatives can do better.
    -----
    The only way Cons will do better is to progress from chess to horse-shoes and eventually hopefully to handgranades.

    :-)
  354. sheila ross from Vancouver, Canada writes: Red, to speak impartially, the conservatives would do well to move on quickly from this man. He is an embarrassment, and the only reason we all didn't see it sooner is that he is arrogant. We mistook this for some kind of vision or 'genius' (stupid us). What the con calculators are likely weighing now is the exit strategy - play for the budget to be defeated, or pray for its acceptance. Hmmm, what's the quickest route?
  355. sheila ross from Vancouver, Canada writes: Garibaldi - well, yes, it is Hollow man's strategy to simply escalate the violence that's for sure. Reduces the rest of us to sappers.
  356. sheila ross from Vancouver, Canada writes: But the point is that hollow man is only a player of checkers and marbles.
  357. Harold K. from Windsor, ON, Canada writes: Gord Lewis from No Tory Like an Old Tory ..., Canada
    - Thanks for the feedback. So you figure the problem with social housing is mainly the shotty execution and oversight by govts, and exploitation by builders.

    That sounds right.

    For me, perhaps the reform and fuding woud be wise, but at another time. Right now, spending should be restricted to areas that directly stimulate the economy and directly provide some short-term assistance for the vulnverable.

    Cheers.
  358. aldyen donnelly from Vancouver, Canada writes: J Kay from Canada says 'the Liberals...were handed a $42 billion deficit by the Mulroney government.[which] represented nearly 34% of the budget revenues...equivalent to ALL government program spending on departments and agencies, save defense' Actually, during the 1990s, the federal deficit peaked at $39,019 billion (Mulroney, 92/93), 31% of budget revenues, equivalent to 25% of all government programme spending save defence in that year (Total expenses = $165.505 B; defence portion = $10,780 B.) ' Thus it is beyond absurd to assume that the Liberals could have presented a budget in 94-95 that would have had a surplus.' I have never suggested the Libs could have presented a surplus in that year. My question is: since they had to run deficits for three years to address that crisis, what would they do, or have the Cons do differently over the next 3 years to address the current financial crisis? You say 'It took time to grow the revenues, such that they could exceed the expenditures and they did so way above expectations in 1994.' Actually, the Libs did raise revenues by some $7 billion in 94/95 (federal revenues actually fell between 91/92 and 93/94), $5 B of which came in the form of personal income taxes, but their revenues still fell short of expenses by over $30 B. 'The Conservatives...inherited a budget that was in surplus and significantly so. They squandered that surplus...' I have read Kevin Page's report. But the fact is that the Cons. booked surpluses of $13.752 B and $9,507 B in 06/07 and 07/08 respectively--in real terms the 2nd and 4th highest surpluses reported between 97/98 and 07/08. Page hypothesizes that the as-yet-unreported final surplus for 08/09 was squandered by the Cons' decision to cut the GST. But sales tax revenues have fallen only .4% for each 1% of GST tax cut, which means spending increased after the GST tax cut, but Canadians elected to invest 60% of the cut instead of spending all of it on consumer products.
  359. Harold K. from Windsor, ON, Canada writes: PS. Any permanent tax cut right now is a bad idea. Sure, some targeted (low income, small business) tax cuts and business tax credits (e.g., R & D) that are TEMPORARY (e.g., 3 years) would be a good idea.

    The Tories had their kick at the permanent tax cut can, and they chose (very unwisely) two one-point GST cuts.

    CHeers.
  360. Garibaldi III from TO from Canada writes: sheila ross from Vancouver, Canada writes: Garibaldi - well, yes, it is Hollow man's strategy to simply escalate the violence that's for sure. Reduces the rest of us to sappers....
    But the point is that hollow man is only a player of checkers and marbles.
    -------
    Yes... that brings back memories.... marbles were such a beautiful thing to waste ....or lose.........but thank God I grew up.
    Cheers
  361. aldyen donnelly from Vancouver, Canada writes: J Kay says: 'Off balance sheet we are currently are running a $34 billion deficit and have added $46 billion of new debt since April (as of October, likely more by now).' Over their first two years in power, the Cons reduced gross federal debt by $10 B and increased the value of government's financial assets by $11.5 B. I think we all anticipate that fiscal 2008/09 will end up with a net increase in federal debt, but I don't know where you get your estimates from. As recently as November 2008, Kevin Page still forecast a decline in federal debt carrying costs for 08/09 and 09/10, in all of his forecast scenarios. One might note that between 94/95 and 05/06 the Libs increased federal debt by $95 B, but they cut annual debt carrying costs. We cannot know if the Cons will pull off something similar...we have to wait and see. But if your standard of good performance is the Lib track record (it is mine, by the way), what you need to be tracking is debt carrying costs, not just total debt levels. It is important to note that the Libs increased federal debt in 6 of the 11 years they ran budgetary surpluses, including one year in which the reported surplus was over $14 B. In the year the Libs booked a surplus over $19 B, they only bought down $13 million worth of debt. They pumped most of that surplus into financial investments. But the single largest year-over-year increase in the value of federal financial assets was realized by the Cons in 06/07. I have never argued the Libs managed federal finances poorly. But to argue that there is a signficant difference between the outcome of Lib policies from 2000 through 2006 and Con policies since then is to deny the numbers. To argue that the Libs would have had a larger pot of financial assets to draw down in time of crisis is to suggest the Libs could have somehow manufactured higher bond interest rates since 07...not a possibility.
  362. Garibaldi III from TO from Canada writes: aldyen donnelly from Vancouver, Canada writes:
    I have never argued the Libs managed federal finances poorly. But to argue that there is a signficant difference between the outcome of Lib policies from 2000 through 2006 and Con policies since then is to deny the numbers.
    ------
    The MAIN difference is that ALL the other parties have learned to COUNT at an early age.... why are the Cons are MUCH slower learners??

    Even my 6 year old nephew could count to 11 with his hands in his pockets..... now explain how 12 votes equals 64 Billion dollars.... that's Billion with a capital 'B'.
    Cheers
  363. J Kay from Canada writes: Philosopher King: yes I'm fairly certain Michael Wilson is a bald man today.

    As you note, GST revenues are predominantly derived from the 'wealthier' Canadians much like income taxes. When the debate during the 2006 election was 1% income tax cut vs 1% gst tax cut, I did an analysis to see who would benefit most from either or. I basically computed income taxes for a range of incomes from $10K up to $4 million, looked at the impact of a 1% income tax cut to the bottom bracket on those range of incomes and then computed the after-tax income and estimates the amount of GST eligable consumption based on Stats Can data for household spending by income bracket. I then did the same except maintained income taxes and cut GST by 1%.

    This somewhat simply analysis showed that the bulk of taxpayers between $16K and $72K would benefit more from an income tax cut than a GST cut. Those earning more, all calculated as individuals, would benefit more from a GST tax cut.

    As an aside, I was able to find one of the documents I referrenced in my analysis, which indicated that the average Canadian paid 3.2% of their disposable income (after tax income) as GST, which would indicate that approximately 46% of after tax purchases were subject to GST.
  364. aldyen donnelly from Vancouver, Canada writes: On GST...it is perhaps worth noting that since 1997 all European Union member states have implemented selected VAT tax cuts. Value-added taxes (including the GST) are progressive taxes when applied to certain forms of consumption while highly progressife when applied to others. The most regressive VATs are VATs applied to energy and food purchases. The European nations discovered long ago that the administrative costs of a VAT rebate system for low income families are overwhelming. In the mid-1990s, Sweden simply eliminated VAT on all energy and power purchases as well as most staples and the UK cut the VAT on non-business fuel and power purchases from 17% to 8%. Then in 2000, the UK cut the VAT on energy further to 5% and a few months ago the UK cut the general VAT rate on all other consumption to 15%. The UK, Swedish and German VAT cuts, in aggregate, have all been much larger than the Ottawa GST cut. What I find a little bizarre is that a large population of Canadian economists recommend that Canada replicate European tax policies and then they attack GST cuts in Canada...which are largely consistent with recent trends in European tax policy. Hmmmmm...
  365. Don Adams, the Centrist Conservative from Canada writes: Well, I can see from the posts no one's solved the problems of the world yet. :-)

    The lefties are certainly trying to screw up Canada though! But, what else is new :-)

    EEL, I used to think you had a smidgin of common sense....after that last post of yours, I now realize I was wrong....you're just another dumb hammer in the bag with all the rest! :-)
  366. aldyen donnelly from Vancouver, Canada writes: J Kay...you are absolutely correct to report that wealthier Canadians pay more of the total GST remits than less wealthy Canadians. But GST directly and indirectly eats up a much higher % of low and middle income earners' total disposable income, both here, in the UK and elsewhere. That is why the US tax system--more dependent on consumption taxes than income taxes--has resulted in a much larger gap between the rich and the poor than ours. Note the administrative costs of rebating GST to the poor is a highly inefficient way to try to address this issue. By definition, a tax is 'regressive' when it eats up more of the disposable income at low income levels than at high income levels, which the GST and VAT does. It has nothing to do with what level of income earners make the largest aggregate contributions. Canada's top 40% of wealthy families spend 4 to 5 times as much on energy and cars than the rest (60% of the poorest households don't even own one car), but they only remit about 2.5 times the consumption taxes (after rebates). This is why the Europeans were right to cut VAT on energy consumption in their attempts to rebalance their tax systems, and why it would have been better had Harper cut all GST on energy sales in stead of going with the across the board GST cuts. The rationale for shifting tax burden from consumption taxes to income taxes to make the tax system more progressive--and a report on the nation's progess in this regard--is outlined, in detail, in every UK Budget since 1999. To achieve GHG reductions, we have to regulate carbon-based product standards, just like we used lead-, sulphur-, PCB- and CFC-based product standards to phase those pollutants out of the consumer supply chain. We failed to tax people away from smoking, gambling and booze, and a tax on essential energy purchases will also fail to change behaviour while making our system much more regressive.
  367. J Kay from Canada writes: alyden donnely: Actually you are incorrect; the federal deficit reached $42 billion when the Mulroney government left office in Sept 1993. It was brought down to $39 billion by April after the Libs had assumed power in January. I know what numbers you're looking at but you need to review the fiscal monitor reports to see the $42 billion figure.

    Regarding the debt management, I'm happy to see that you are attempting to be informed on the matter, since it is true that reductions in accumulated deficit do not directly translate into reductions in gross debt. Part of that has to do with the fact that the government cannot simply pay off existing debt, when they run a surplus. They can only retire debt, when the debt matures and they tend to save the money in the financial accounts, until the long term debt matures. They could pay off treasuries or reduce the amount of treasuries being issued but there are problems with doing so which is why the financial assets are allowed to grow and the reason the accumulated deficit reductions dont equal the gross debt reductions.

    Regarding the $46 billion off balance sheet numbers I'm referring to, I'm specifically referring to $46 billion in new interest bearing debt - offset by $46 billion in federal government assets such that net accumulated deficit remains unchanged - which will drive up the debt servicing costs for 2009-10. To see these numbers refer to the Fiscal Monitor report and look at Table 6, the condensed statement of assets and liabilities and then specifically at the interest bearing debt. The change from March 31 to Oct 31 is $46.7 billion.
  368. Garibaldi III from TO from Canada writes: aldyen donnelly from Vancouver, Canada writes: On GST...it is perhaps worth noting that since 1997 all European Union member states have implemented selected VAT tax cuts.
    ----
    Good point..... they are 11 years to our 2 years worse than us!

    GST cuts favor the rich..... for every tax dollar that is shifted from one group it needs to be made up by the others!

    WITH ONLY ONE EXCEPTION:
    GST cuts would work ONLY if implemented by an equivalent cut in government spending..... all else is Harper economics or a ponzi scheme.
    Cheers
  369. J Birch from Hamilton, Canada writes:

    The Emperor has no clothes

    Egads what an image

    .
  370. J Kay from Canada writes: aldyen donnely: On the GST I dont disagree that the cost of administration is quite high and that the tax rebate system for GST adds unnecessarily to it, though given that it's tied to the income tax returns and is seperate from the actual GST collection I suspect it isn't as bad as you believe. Targetted tax cuts however I think would have some difficulty in hitting/benefiting predominantly low income families, as the current GST credit system does.

    My comment wasn't so much to say that the rich pay the preponderance of the GST in absolute terms, which is true, but that as a result of that, they were the ones who benefitted most from the GST tax cuts which have been enacted over the past 2 years. The bulk of Canadians would have been better off with a 1% income tax cut, but as that didn't happened it's somewhat moot.
  371. Philosopher King from Ivory Tower, Canada writes: J Kay from Canada: To me this whole thing was made worse by the fact that many businesses sucked up the difference. At the time of the first cut I was looking into investment property. I noticed that only 11 weeks after the cuts, the price of a condo development I was looking at was repackaged to account for the cuts, and surprise surprise the total price looked strangely familiar.

    It was only a few thousand off the original price despite the fact that it technically should've dropped by over $12 000.
  372. J Kay from Canada writes: Philosopher King: I hear ya. I think we've discussed this herein before and you and I are on a similar page regarding the idea that business will capture vacated tax room and simply asborb a portion of that space as extra profit.

    Coincidentally a friend of mine and I were discussing this very subject yesterday. He wasn't entirely convinced but from the bit of research and analysis I've done it appear that a significant portion of the vacated tax space was captured by business, otherise one should have expected a significant decline in or moderation of inflation.
  373. Philosopher King from Ivory Tower, Canada writes: J Kay from Canada: So in otherwords, what I lost through the sale I probably got back in my investment portfolio.
  374. J Kay from Canada writes: Phil King: LOL. Yeah. How's that doing by the way? :)
  375. harry oakes from toronto, Canada writes: Mr.Ignatieff grandstands when he proposes to sleep on the budget after his examination tomorrow.It matters not a whit whether Mr.Harper's so called stimulus budget is just more smoke and mirrors or in fact is substantial enough to slow the slide. He will in fact support the government regardless. The probability is that the package will not be massive enough to alter the current economic slide.....but these two will honeymoon together until it becomes evident that Mr.Carney's projections prove to be just more empty speculations.At that point panic will ensue on all sides with yet another maxi budget and cabinet shuffle with a new finance minister....somebody has to be blamed ...and then it will be a short run into yet another election......resulting in a new PM supported by other parties in a rekindled minority. All of this leads me to retort..'thank goodness for Quebec ....otherwise we would have been locked in to this insanity for years'
  376. pik scott from Canada writes: diane marie from Canada writes: siren call:-- Well, there is Mr. M. and he is very well connected, as are no doubt some of the Calgary School members. As for Mr. M. - he may not hold much credibility these days - but he can still call on a lot of people. One of the most recent polls had Mr. Harper's approval ratings at the lowest level ever. I can't see anyone thinking that he's anything but a liability.
    Posted 26/01/09 at 2:29 AM EST | Alert an Editor | Link to Comment
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Poll today harper with 44%. What poll were you reading the liberal party poll.
  377. pik scott from Canada writes: Ed Long from Canada writes: The PM is leaking a budget that takes priorities from previous deficit budgets produced by Liberals, nationally, and NDP, provincially.

    Even Jack Layton has said this is an NDP budget. He'll still vote against it because Jack has been bitten by the power bug.

    The recession is not unprecedented. The cause is unique and global. We have had 11% and 13% unemployment in the last 27 years. And when we had the latter, 7%-9% was viewed as a healthy labour market.

    We have had ten years of unprecedented growth, therefore any downturn becomes a major drama.

    Regardless of contextual perspective, the government must show concern via deficit spending yet not throw the door open to the printing press. And the government must start acting like a government of adults.

    I will say the media, specifically the Globe and CBC, have made this recession into a story of unprecedented and endless doom. The Globe ROB, Saturday, had one half page of factual business news. The rest was looking for innards to read.

    The situation is serious not dire.
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
  378. pik scott from Canada writes: Screwed that one up, now what I was going to say is , post of the year.
  379. Philosopher King from Ivory Tower, Canada writes: J Kay from Canada: Horrendous of course, but for those of us who can wait this out, it's all relative.

    It's those with no alternatives or those who lose their jobs or are forced to solidify their losses that suffer, whereas my debate is whether I need a third car since my wife keeps taking the BMW to work because it has heated seats.

    Admittedly that's the same reason I want to take it, but still, you'd think we could trade off once in awhile...
  380. Philosopher King from Ivory Tower, Canada writes: harry oakes from toronto, Canada writes: '... Mr.Ignatieff grandstands when he proposes to sleep on the budget after his examination tomorrow.It matters not a whit whether Mr.Harper's so called stimulus budget is just more smoke and mirrors or in fact is substantial enough to slow the slide. He will in fact support the government regardless...'

    While he most likely will support the budget, he will still be having meetings and doing the political calculus.

    As long as Harper lays off the 'poison pills' as Rob Carriere put it, then I suspect all will be well in the dominion come Wednesday.
  381. aldyen donnelly from Vancouver, Canada writes: J Kay...Thanks for pointing me to the Fiscal Monitor. I am familiar with it but, obviously, was not referring to it in my prior remarks. Let's try to use the Monitor to reposition my comments. The Monitor shows that the Cons. did increase short term and long term borrowing to $43.6 B between April and Oct 2008, while they REDUCED that borrowing by $30.8 B and $17.67 B between April and October 07 and 06, respectively. By comparison, the Libs reduced that borrowing by $11.972 B, $9.967 B in 05 and 04, respectively, and increased it a small $255 million in 03. If we elect to use the October Fiscal Monitor as our reference for each year, the Cons' April to Oct 96 and 07 borrowing cuts overwhelm the Libs' total cuts for the comparable prior 4 reporting periods. Arguing that the Libs would have had to borrow less in Oct 2008 than the Cons is to argue that the Libs would have substantially changed the spending and borrowing patterns they had established before the change in government. Further it is to argue that the Libs would have failed to keep their January 2006 platform budget commitments had they been elected instead of the Cons. The October 2008 Fiscal monitor also states that an 11% reduction April to October GST revenues relative to the same period in 2007 is due to a 1% cut in the GST rate. You will have to explain to me how a 1% sales tax rate reduction can be responsible for an 11% reduction in total revenues. Obviously, demand for GST-taxed goods and services declined for other reasons, including but not limited to the massive increase in the market price for GST-taxed transport fuels. As I noted earlier, in the prior year the 1% GST cut translated into a 0.4% GST revenue reduction over a period when overall prices of consumer goods increased faster than incomes. It is simply impossible to a call an 11% GST revenue reduction the direct and sole result of a further 1% cut in the GST. Clearly our recession had already started before October 2008.
  382. John Di Gasbarro from Thornhill, Canada writes: The tax cuts better be going to the working class. Individuals who are actually going to spend the money and stimulate the economy. With respect to infracture spending.....it is not enough to stimulate the economy.
  383. aldyen donnelly from Vancouver, Canada writes: J Kay...you say that stellar Lib management is responsible for a -$4 B change in federal debt between October 1993 and the end of March 1994. Applying that logic consistently, then you have to attribute the -$8.5 change in federal debt between October 2005 and the end of March 2006 to even more stellar Cons management.

    Obviously, I do not believe the substantial difference between the October point-in-time debt estimate and the year-end actual position a function of last minute fiscal management miracles, in any year. But if you are going to insist that it is, then you have to be consistent. Again, it is not my goal to suggest that the Libs management poorly. But the number simply do not prove the hypothesis that the Cons. managed debt, cashflow or spending very differently than the Libs have done since 2000/01
  384. J Kay from Canada writes: aldyen donnely: You're most welcome. Based on the Fiscal Monitor and the fact that GST and corporate tax revenues are in significant decline from April - Oct, I fully expect 2008-09 to be in deficit. This is consistent with comments I've made before that if one reviwes the sensitivity analysis portion of the 2008 budget and looks at the impact of changes to the underlying assumptions, changes which have more than manifest, a budget deficit of about $1.5 billion - $3.0 billion is what I'm expecting to see.

    Regarding the October fiscal monitor's suggestion that the 1% GST resulted in a 11% cut to GST revenues is as you suggest a bit absurd. That said, to suggest a 1% GST only result in a .4% revenue decline is also wrong. GST revenues for the past few years have been growing quite fast in large part because people were borrowing money to facilitate spending over an above their income growth, predominantly supported by increased equity values in their homes. That credit tap has more or less dried up and thus disposable income spending has had to decline and with it GST revenues. I suspect they will further decline in 2009-10. Corporate taxes are off 12% (IIRC) and I would also expect to see further deterioration through Nov 2008 - April 2009, and then beyond.

    Note that when one looks at fiscal source/requirements and how much debt is paid off at the end of any given year vs invested in financial assets, to a large degree the governments are restricted in how much they can pay off by how much long term debt matures within a given fiscal year. That's why the Conservatives were able to pay off a significant amount of debt in mid 07-08, but by the end of 2007-08, they had only reduced net debt by $17.3 billion at the end of the year.

    I simply used the April-Oct fiscal monitor for this year because it is the extent of data that we have for 2008-09 at this juncture. Things might improve before year end but I'm doubtful.
  385. J Kay from Canada writes: aldyen donnely: Not at all. I wasn't suggesting that the Liberals between January 4 1994 and March 31 1994 did anything spectacular, save having the good fortune to see the budget deficit shrink during the last 5 months of fiscal 1993-94, as the country started to grow out of a deficit.

    That said, the Conservatives inhereited the government officially from Paul Martin in Feb 6 2006 and thus had little more than 7 weeks before the end of the fiscal year. By January 2006, the budget surplus for 2005-06 was sitting at $9.0 billion and by March it stood at $13.2 billion.

    So both governments benefitted by a $3-4 billion swing. That all said, whether it's $42 billion or $39 billion, it still represented nearly all government departmental spending for 1994-95.

    Also note the Liberals in 1994-95 and 1995-96 had the misfortune of having debt servicing costs increase by nearly $9 billion over the two years due to higher interest rates, which made their fiscal management during the first 3 years even more impressive.
  386. The Central Screwtinizer from Ottawawa, Canada writes: Hint-Hint; Nudge-Nudge...JUST SHOW US THE CASH...!
  387. The Central Screwtinizer from Ottawawa, Canada writes: MONEY TALKS--B$ WALKS...
  388. aldyen donnelly from Vancouver, Canada writes: J Kay...I take your point on my comment relating the .04% cut in GST revenues to the 1% rate cut. But it is complicated. GST revenues increased an unprecedented 10%, year over year, in the year before the rate cut. That means the consumer spending seriously overwhelmed the increase in disposable incomes in 05. One would anticipate a bit of a 'make up' or slow down in spending growth rates after a binge like that. But most attempts at dissecting the components of the 2006/07 GST revenue reduction is a guessing game at best and I should not have started down that path.

    My guess for the 08/-8 deficit is in line with yours. But where are you putting total debt and debt carrying costs at March 31 2009?
  389. J Kay from Canada writes: Phil King: I hear ya. I was fortunate to have the bulk of my assets outside of the market when it went to hell in a handbasket. I jumped back in a bit too soon and I'm still kicking myself for not betting against the market, instead of just getting out but c'est la vie.

    I also agree with your fully that for those like ourselves who have the ability to ride it out and simply hold on, it is all relative. In fact I think it is times like this that the well off and wealthy are able to widen the gap between themselves and those of lesser means, since who besides those at the upper end of the income distribution (generally) have the excess cash to take advantage of the depreciated asset/equity prices. I'm looking at the next year as a significant buying opportunity and one I'm fortunate enough to take advantage of; well at least for the time being.
  390. J Kay from Canada writes: aldyen donnely: Generally on an annualised basis over a long time horizon, income taxes and GST grow at nominal GDP growth rates. As such since the introduction of the GST, the average rate of growth is GST revenues has been 5.6%. The last couple years upto 2006 has seen a significant increase in revenues and one could estimate roughly what it would have been if rates hadn't changed for 2007 and 2008. This as I noted is largely due to increased borrowing during the last few years of the boom here, where people's debt as a proportion of disposable income increased.

    The total debt and carrying costs will also be a bit of a guessing game. A big portion of the new interesting bearing debt is due to the mortgage debt swap with financial institutions and other loans, as well as to improve the cash position of the government and finally to pay off some accounts payable.

    Given the auto bail out talks and the possiblity of further borrowing through CMHC I'm putting the new interest bearing debt at about $55 billion, with the net accumulated deficit increasing by the $1.5 - $3.0 billion, the difference offset by financial assets.

    Most of the new debt is being lent at fairly low interest rates, in the range of 1.5% - 4.5%, so I expect the effective average interest rate to remain the same or decline slightly, say .1% to 5.6%. Thus I would expect that debt servicing costs for the year should come in around $35.6 - $36.3 billion, up from the current $33.3 billion.

    These are all very back of the envelope calculations at this point but given that the economic news started to really go south during and after October, I can't reasonably see the budget position improving toward the end of fiscal 2008-09.
  391. Abraham Neufeld from Powell River, BC, Canada writes: The only justification for a deficit is that we are experiencing extra-ordinary times. I wish that both the Con and Lib would dare to use extra-ordinary methods, as Lester Pearson tried in about 1967-68 (see FinancialPost).

    Mr. Pearson authorized the Bank of Canada to buy government bonds w/o using the chartered banks. The Bank of Canada created its own credit , to purchase the bonds. Therefore any interest paid went back to the people (tax payers).

    Shortly after that procedure, Mr. Pearson was pushed out of the Lib Party.

    I challenge both Mr. Harper and Mr. Ignatieff to adopt the Pearson method.

  392. Harold K. from Windsor, ON, Canada writes: My gosh, our thread is being 'invested' with a couple of experts in the federal deficit and debt!

    aldyen donnelly and j. kay, please tell me you are retired acuarries, federal ministry of finance employees... or autoworkers on layoff... lol (whatever turns your crank...)

    ;-) Cheers.
  393. Harold K. from Windsor, ON, Canada writes: Abraham Neufeld from Powell River, BC, Canada writes: The only justification for a deficit is that we are experiencing extra-ordinary times. I wish that both the Con and Lib would dare to use extra-ordinary methods, as Lester Pearson tried in about 1967-68 (see FinancialPost).

    Mr. Pearson authorized the Bank of Canada to buy government bonds w/o using the chartered banks. The Bank of Canada created its own credit , to purchase the bonds. Therefore any interest paid went back to the people (tax payers).

    Shortly after that procedure, Mr. Pearson was pushed out of the Lib Party.

    I challenge both Mr. Harper and Mr. Ignatieff to adopt the Pearson method.
    _______

    Well said Abraham! Bold action is needed, indeed.

    (If feels like the all of the leaders, particularly Mr Harper and Mr. Layton, are FIDDLING around with partisan games and power plays, while ROME BURNS - a slight exaggeration, for effect.)

    Cheers.

    ps. If you are using your real name as your moniker -- and don't answer me here -- I strongly suggest you change it, as least somewhat.
  394. Harold K. from Windsor, ON, Canada writes: ps. my last point was mostly based on concerns about your privacy, but also there are occassionally anti-semetic dummies on threads...

    Cheers.
  395. Abraham Neufeld from Powell River, BC, Canada writes: Mr. Harold K ...that's my real name!

    Cheers
  396. Harold K. from Windsor, ON, Canada writes: Okay, let's hope you are joking. Or perhaps you are just a care-free individual willing to take risks and expose yourself to the rare predjudice shown on these threads.

    It is your choice; I just thought it would be fair to warn you.

    Cheers.
  397. bilbo baggins from Canada writes: sheila ross from Vancouver, Canada writes: Bilbo, it is not very reasonable to claim Dion lusted after power, since he had already resigned his leadership.

    ============

    Oh please, he back doored his way into power with the Liberal party. If the Coalition had worked, he would have been the prime minister so he was lusting away obviously.

    To everyone's point about the current PM not being qualified, how can he be in power, etc. Put your blame on the Liberals. It was their pathetic choice of leader that allowed PM Harper to win. They have finally replaced him. Time will tell if Ignatieff can beat him but it is a start to improving the competitiveness of the politics.
  398. J Birch from Hamilton, Canada writes:

    See Mansbride's Saturday interview with Ignatieff

    http://www.cbc.ca/video/popup.html?http://www.cbc.ca/mrl3/8752/oneonone/2009-01-24.wmv#

    .
  399. Harold K. from Windsor, ON, Canada writes: J Birch from Hamilton, Canada writes:

    See Mansbride's Saturday interview with Ignatieff


    ______
    What was your take on it? Unfortunately, he can come across as cold, detatched, and arrogant -- without the charm of say a, Pierre Trudeau.

    He is new to the job though.

    Q1 - Can he grow into it - to be an effective leader and then PM?

    Q2 - If not, who is the alternative?

    Cheers.
  400. marc l from Petawawa, Ont., Canada writes: Hoping MP Cheryl Gallant can somehow get Flaherty to make the "killer highway", 417 from Arnprior to Pembokre, ONT., 4 lanes, which they (the province and the feds), have been promising for 3 decades and have been saying "it should be completed within 25 years." It is only a 60 km stretch of highway thru wilderness; it's not like they have to move homes and office buildings to get the thing done. RNP Riding, so you folks know, under Len Hopkins, Sean Conway and now Cheryl Gallant, could have elected a parrot and there would be NO difference!
  401. J Birch from Hamilton, Canada writes:

    Harold K. from Windsor, ON, Canada writes: J Birch from Hamilton, Canada writes:

    See Mansbride's Saturday interview with Ignatieff

    ______
    What was your take on it? Unfortunately, he can come across as cold, detatched, and arrogant -- without the charm of say a, Pierre Trudeau.

    He is new to the job though.

    Q1 - Can he grow into it - to be an effective leader and then PM?

    Q2 - If not, who is the alternative?

    Cheers.

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Hi Harold

    I'm comfortable with Ignatieff. Met him a couple of times and the message doesn't change to suit the crowd. I think he's very savvy.

    He's sincere without telegraphing weakness.

    Cool yes, aloof no.

    He's the first Liberal Leader to acknowledge the disastrous NEP for what it was and to call it a huge mistake.

    I would have no problem seeing him as PM

    .
  402. lord cross of Blacks Harbour from BLACKS HARBOUR NB, Canada writes:
    For clear, concise discussions of the U.S. financial regulatory meltdown, you can go to the Wall Street Journal ... They've quit guesssing when the various financial failures and attendant loss of confidence will work its way through the system.

    End of Wall Street: What Happened 1/5/2009

    Chapter One: In the first of this three-part series, Journal reporters explain how the housing bubble inflated and burst, and why easy money led to the collapse of Wall Street’s biggest financial institutions.

    End of Wall Street: Why it Happened 9:24

    Chapter Two: What was going through the minds of CEOs, corporate boards, fund managers and mortgage lenders as they created hard-to-understand derivatives Warren Buffett once called “weapons of financial mass destruction.”

    End of Wall Street: What Happens Next 1/5/2009

    Chapter Three: This final chapter of the crisis on Wall Street tells the story of the $700-billion bailout, as seen through a reporter’s eyes, and looks at what’s ahead for the global economy.
  403. lord cross of Blacks Harbour from BLACKS HARBOUR NB, Canada writes:

    Kam Fong As Chin Ho from Bermuda writes:

    You do excellent detail work which clearly illustrates the Harper / Flairity propensity for DOUBLESPEAK. It's no small wonder Duff Conacher is upset with current government duplicity.

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