Entries from May 2005 ↓

Leave it to Beaver

Sadly, even local Canadian media are not immune from the Liberalitis of the Big City papers. Here’s this week’s editorial from the Oaville Beaver (owned, by the way, by the Toronto Star), and my response.

Right wing approach failing

Oakville Beaver Editorial
May 27, 2005

As weeks go, Conservative Party Leader Stephen Harper certainly has had better. The question remains, however, what does he have to do to see those better days?
To be sure, the defection of Belinda Stronach to the Liberals, the ensuing defeat of the poorly-planned, Tory-led non-confidence vote in the House of Commons and Tuesday’s by-election win by the Liberals have left the Tories licking their wounds.

More importantly, the events of the past week surely must have many Tories wondering if Stephen Harper is the man to lead them to the promised land.

That obviously is up to the party to decide, but the fact remains Harper has done little to convince voters east of Manitoba he offers an improvement over Paul Martin.

More damning is that poll after poll indicates he has been unable to take advantage of the fact the Liberals have been mired in the mud of the Gomery inquiry for months. Shockingly, voters seem more content to side with a scandal-plagued party than share Harper’s vision of Canada.

With an election likely to occur within the next year, changing leaders now will do little, if any, good for the Tories. However, the party could make itself more appealing to voters by moving slightly to the left as Brian Mulroney did two decades ago.

While many find the Tories’ fiscal policies palatable, it is their social conservatism that scares off a sizeable number of voters.

We have seen an America under George W. Bush and we want no part of that agenda.

The Tories’ hard-line approach to social issues, such as gay marriage, stoke those fears. Then there is also the old redneck Reform stigma to shake.

Harper must realize that his current course is headed nowhere. Giving ground to the more moderate thinkers in his party will only improve the Tories’ chances in the next election.

A refusal to do so will only result in a continued stay in the Opposition benches.

My response:

Dear Editor:

It would a real shame if the Oakville Beaver fell into that camp of Liberal media outlets who have been trying to portray the Conservative Party as a bunch of right-wing, fundamentalist rednecks who are little more than northern George W. Bush wannabes. But your editorial, “Right wing approach failing,” clearly suggests you are at risk.

Let’s get the facts straight: The Liberal government is daily at the Gomery Enquiry being proven to be corrupt and probably criminal. The Liberal government survives only because of a deal with the NDP that lets Jack Layton write the budget. The Liberal government has gone on a $25 billion spending orgy to try and buy support. The Liberal government bribed a Conservative MP with a cabinet seat to win a confidence vote.

And you say Conservatives are scary?

Stephen Harper may not be Mr. Charisma, just a thoughtful and principled man trying to do the right things. And there may be people in this party, like all the others, who are social conservatives and worry about slipping moral values.

But the real goal is finding the best bunch of people to run Canada. Even newspapers should not forget that.

Garth Turner
Conservative Party candidate

Minister Jack

A thousand times a thousand is a million. A thousand times a million is a billion. And the federal government has announced more than $25 billion in new spending since Jack Layton became the minister of finance.

That was in late April, when the New Democrats announced a deal with the Martin Liberals to prop up the government, in effect making Layton the second most powerful person in the country, after the prime minister. Since then, Layton has kept the government alive by telling his socialist members to vote with the Grits – a reality which led to that 153-152 squeaker a few days ago.

In return, Minister Jack has been able to get a major corporate tax reduction shelved, and increased social program spending by $4.6 billion. He also set the tone for every other group who think this is exactly the time to pledge political support in return for being bought off. Hence, the river of money that has been flowing down off Parliament Hill in the past five weeks.

The new billions are also intended to give enough people what they want so that the rest of us will forget about the sponsorship scandal – which cost a paltry $300 million or so. This had led economists to speculate that our budget surplus will turn into a deficit; that billions in new spending will spike inflation; and that ultimately, interest rates will jump. Once the government resumes spending more money than it takes it, the pressure on money markets that federal borrowing creates is enough to drive everyone’s loan costs higher.

But, it’s all about to get worse.

Now Minister Jack says he wants to extend his support of the Liberals, forming a sort of Coalition Government on a permanent basis. Martin is likely to jump at this since he is obviously terrified at the prospect of an election, and is doing everything in his power to avoid one. This will mean only one thing for Canadians: More spending.

After all, is Minister Jack and his caucus going to pressure the Liberals into balancing the books, or giving back taxpayers some of their money? Do they care about your mortgage rate, or creating private sector jobs?

Hardly. This is the gang who wants public money channeled into social housing and into creating a bigger public service. They consider people who own houses to be rich. They are not the guardians and defenders of middle class taxpayers, and they do not care about middle class issues. They couldn’t care less about your mortgage. Sure, the NDP have a role to play, and interests to promote. But right now, thanks to a desperate Paul Martin, Minister Jack is in the driver’s seat.

This should make every Canadian who wants his or her country to be less indebted, very worried. It should bother all of us who have lived with spending cuts and the GST in order to turn the deficit into a surplus. It should terrify those who know the economic devastation that overspending, and a rebound in inflation, can cause.

And it should be taken as a personal failure by anyone who worked hard in the past to resist writing cheques for billions we did not have, because living within our means was the right thing to do.

Yes, Paul Martin, I mean you.

Liberal commemorative pin

My Liberal sources have forwarded to me a picture of a new Liberal Party of Canada Commemorative Pin. These pins, embossed in gold, will be handed out to all party members who have received government contracts, patronage appointments, or little envelopes. The source assures me that at least 50,000 such pins will be awarded.

New Liberal Pin