The budget

budget-cartoon.jpg

The budget: some initial thoughts.

The centrepiece is an after-tax savings plan, which is a good idea coming, sadly, at the wrong time. Modelled on the US 401k, this will allow you to put aside up to $5,000 a year, have it augment tax-free, and then take it out in retirement without paying Ottawa a hunk of it. It’s something I have long advicated for, but regret that it comes when Canadians have a zero national savings rate.

After all, the traditional RRSP is a much better deal, and yet people put aside only 7% of what that plan allows each year. The fact is, no families will find an extra five grand just because Ottawa got the message.

The budget also does little to alleviate economic uncertainty, since there is precious little – $1 billion or so in new money – to help the manufacturing sector. That’s not even enough to retool one assembly line, and the capital cost allowance acceleration (also a good idea, but at the wrong time) will fail to keep faltering factories open.

The fiscal bottom line similarly warrants critical attention. After plopping another $10 billion against the debt this year, the surplus collapse to nothing in 2009-10, which means if Jim Flaherty is wrong on his economic projections, we’re back into the deficit soup. This is strange stuff for a government which just spent a few million dollars trying to scare the country into thinking the only deficits possible have a big red ‘L’ on them.

Overall, the budget uses a shotgun approach to throw little gobs of money in all directions – a little to culture, seniors, aboriginals, infrastructure, seniors and the environment. In that, it’s consistent with the Conservative approach of vote-shopping with signle-interest tax cuts, rather than inspiring a nation with a vision and a purpose.

Some of my colleagues call it a Liberal budget. Maybe so. But I find it wanting. The American eocnomy poses a seious risk to middle-class Canada, our embattled manufacturing sector and our collective financial future. We have an untreated climate change crisis. The real estate market is at growing risk. Canadian families are still massively over-taxed and facing dimming job prospects, with an uncompetitive dollar and a government in Ottawa which has just issued the third consecutive budget that sets a new all-time record for spending.

It’s a disappointment. But also a letdown is that this government will live another day.

dion-budget.jpg
Here is the official Liberal media release on Stephane Dion’s response:

Liberals Won’t Bring Down Conservative Government over Watered-Down Liberal Budget

OTTAWA РThe Liberal Opposition will not bring down the Conservatives based on their latest budget because it adopts many of the measures the Liberal Party has championed, Liberal Leader St̩phane Dion said today.

“Because the Conservative government has already spent the cupboard bare with their previous budgets and Economic Update, this budget does not go as far as we would like in some areas, but it does not warrant an election that Canadians don’t want, at a time when so much remains to be done in this Parliament,” said Mr. Dion.

“With this budget, the Conservative government has begun to move in the direction that the Liberal Opposition has been pushing. This government is obviously lacking its own ideas, which is why it has adopted so many of ours from funding infrastructure, to bolstering R&D, and manufacturing.”

Mr. Dion pointed to the following initiatives, which were spear-headed by the Liberal Opposition:

– Making the Gas Tax transfer permanent, as we committed in February 2007;
– Providing direct support to the auto sector, as we called for in January 2008;
– Creating jobs and improving public transit through additional investments in infrastructure, as we advocated in February 2008;
– Increasing the Northern Residents Deduction, as we promised in December 2007;
– Providing funding to hire more police, as we committed in March 2007;
– Improving cash-flow support for livestock producers, and providing direct payments for hog farmers, as we recommended;
– Undoing some of the Conservative government’s previous cuts to the university granting councils and the indirect costs of research program, which would have grown substantially under the Liberal Economic Update of 2005; and,
– Bringing back some of the funding from the Liberals’ 2005 Update for Student Grants and modernizing the Canada Student Loans program.

However, Mr. Dion expressed concern that the Conservatives’ projected surpluses of $2.3 billion for this year and $1.3 billion for next year are well below the $3-billion contingency fund that Liberals consider the bare minimum to cushion against unanticipated economic shocks.

“This budget shows the Conservatives are adopting Liberal ideas, including bolstering the economy so it can weather a possible slow-down, but their actions over the last two years have left them virtually no room to maneuver should the economy continue to falter,” said Mr. Dion.

117 comments ↓

#1 David Bakody on 02.26.08 at 4:36 pm

It’s a disappointment. But also a letdown is that this government will live another day.

DITTO!

#2 Harry S on 02.26.08 at 4:53 pm

Garth

Would you categorize this Budget as a mini-budget .. while the budget last autumn was the Big Budget ??

I think you Liberals have missed the boat on defeating the Harper government last year, and now you must support the Harper government until the next budget in late Autumn to bring down the Harper government.

That creates a problem for Dion, because he may not survive that long as leader .. given that BobRae will be a full Liberal MP on March 17th. Rae will anchor the left wing of the Liberal party while Ignateff will secure the right wing .. and Dion will be squeezed out of leadership. I think that any sensible person would agree with that analysis.

I don’t think that Dion has any further room to grow as Liberal leader. He has peaked and now it is all downhill for him as his personal polling numbers indicate. Too bad, but Dion has obviously exceeded his level of incompetence by a large measure.

Next federal election .. October 2009 ..??!!

#3 Ike on 02.26.08 at 4:53 pm

The word is now in, folks.

It is “let’s roll over” instead of “let’s roll!” How long will these games cbe played?

Liberal Leader Stephane Dion said today the budget “touches everything but accomplishes very little,” but suggested his party would not force an election over the document.

“Under the circumstances, I don’t see enough that would justify that we precipitate an election that Canadians do not want — for now,” he told reporters.

Is it Canadians that do not want an election, or is it Monsieur Dion once again. He told us that he would choose the moment, but that we should be ready at any time.

He may just have cried “Wolf!” once too often, as the pat answer remains, “Maintain the status quo–for now?”

Are we all comfortable with that?

#4 James- Chatham on 02.26.08 at 4:55 pm

In terms of balls and strikes, Mr. Flaherty at bat, 2 out, no runners on base and a full count.

Mr. Flaherty just hit a foul ball. Not good enough to advance the runners (Canadian economy) but good enough that the CPC government doesn’t strike out.

BTW Garth re: the after-tax savings plan, in the US. there are heavy penalties if the money is taken out before age 59, because its specifically designed for retirement savings. Does Mr. Flaherty’s propose have the same restrictions. The CBC summary had it that one could take the money out anytime, no penalty, and then put it back in!

#5 C. B. Innes on 02.26.08 at 4:58 pm

Once again Dion and the Liberals have been out-manoeuvred by Harper and his Conservatives. What it will illustrate to Canadians is that in spite of their words, the Liberal Party, or at least a majority of its caucus basically support the direction the Conservatives are moving the country.

The Liberals blinked on Afghanistan and gave Harper exactly want he needed to continue the Afghanistan War to promote the development of the defence industry. The Liberals in the Senate blinked and allowed themselves to be intimidated into passing the crime bill on the Conservative time line proving that it is useless in protecting a dictatorial PM. Now the Liberals have accepted a do nothing budget except for what I see as one significant item.

By creating a Crown Corporation to deal with private public partnerships, a term coined by neo-liberals to promote the privatization of public services and public space, allows privatization to take place under the protection of the corporate model and outside general scrutiny.

This is a sneaky but effective means of advancing the Harper neo-capitalist agenda of privatizing various public institutions. It is a master stroke to put this in a budget under the protection of a confidence motion rather than introduce it as separate legislation where it might actually get serious debate. The same goes for creation of a crown corporation for EI. Once it is structured under a coporate model it can easily be sold off to the private sector as a private employment insurance company.

I can understand why, as a former Progressive Conservative, the Liberal Party seems to be getting a bit uncomfortable for Garth and those Liberals who “get it.”

#6 Lex Luthor on 02.26.08 at 5:03 pm

It’s a disappointment … – Garth

So, you are going to stick up for your principles and vote against it?

#7 Marc on 02.26.08 at 5:08 pm

Cancelling the eco-auto rebate shows this party doesn’t know what direction to travel, but is actually going in circles. Bring it in 2 years ago and cancel it at the end of 08.

I like the idea of the tax free savings account. It is about time a government learned that they shouldn’t suck and blow at the same time. I pay taxes on the money I make, fair enough. I pay tax on the money I spend, little less fair but good enough. I pay tax on the money I sock away? Not very fair at all. So now I can move my cash in 5K annual increments to a tax free location. Good idea and about time.

#8 Greg W., Oakville on 02.26.08 at 5:16 pm

Were is your food comimg from?

Environmental disaster to be solved in China

China Using Fish to Eat Pollution, Then Selling the Fish
http://www.suntstefan.com/2008/02/26/china-using-fish-to-eat-pollution-then-selling-the-fish/

#9 Greg W., Oakville on 02.26.08 at 5:18 pm

Busy Beavers ease drought
http://www.zmescience.com/busy-beavers-ease-drought

#10 James- Chatham on 02.26.08 at 5:19 pm

Could someone clear up the scerarios for me, please?

If the Bloq or NDP put forth an amendment, the Libs don’t want election so all they do is vote against along with CPC. Amendment defeated.

But what happens if the Libs put forward an amendment? We can assume the NDP and Bloq will vote for it and the amendment will pass. If the CPC votes against, we have an election.

But what if the CPC say, “Never thought of that. Good idea we agree,” and support the amendment. Do we still go to the polls?

I ask because the CPC seems to be taking the many Libs ideas to heart.

#11 Greg W., Oakville on 02.26.08 at 5:22 pm

Mr Garth TurnerMP,

How about let the Liberals vote freely on the budget.
Harper and his gang need to go sooner than later. My two cents.

#12 Greg W., Oakville on 02.26.08 at 5:37 pm

Top EPA deputy pleaded with boss to OK California standards
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2008/02/26/BABQV8V4J.DTL

#13 pissinginthetent.com on 02.26.08 at 5:38 pm

Brutal. Big letdown that you Liberals are backing Harper. Is this former progressive Conservative going to have to vote for the NDP next time ??

#14 Realist on 02.26.08 at 5:41 pm

“This government is obviously lacking its own ideas, which is why it has adopted so many of ours from funding infrastructure, to bolstering R&D, and manufacturing.”

Can you ask your leader to make up his mind? It just recently that the Liberals were accusing the Cons of governing like they had a majority and not paying attention to the views of the opposition parties, now the Harper et al have no idea’s of their own and are dependent on the Liberals to write a budget. Dion’s stance is very confusing…

#15 dj on 02.26.08 at 5:41 pm

Was that Kyoto, Dion’s dog, I just saw on the news?

He had his tail between his legs!

I’m votin’ Green. They may not get any seats in the HoC but I really don’t see the Liberals as having any anyways…Sit,Abstain,Walk-out!

#16 Greg W., Oakville on 02.26.08 at 5:49 pm

CO2 To Help Producing Biofuel
http://ecofuss.com/co2-to-help-producing-biofuel/

#17 TS on 02.26.08 at 5:50 pm

Garth, why is the TFSA a good thing? You are killing me.

If you liken this to the US 401K plan (US – RRSP), why not just reform the RRSP?
Now the government gets to be beneficent and tell me how much I can save yrly and not pay taxes. BS!

Why not just get out of our personal banking altogether and scrap the T5’s the banks send to us savers? Everything we keep in hand is after tax
dollars that is double dipped! How much is this program going to cost to implement?…more make work, more big brother/banking involvement. And just
how much in fees are the banks going to charge for their administrative efforts since it will obviously be registerd? Nickeled and dimed to death. Thanks kindly.

http://www.budget.gc.ca/2008/pdf/pamphlet-depliant2-eng.pdf

Overall as Mr. Dion said…a mile wide and an inch deep!

#18 Bob R. on 02.26.08 at 5:53 pm

Thank you Mr.Flaherty for another great budget.You know it must be good when the real leader of the liberal party,(Bob Rae),doesn’t want to vote against it.That therefore tells us as Canadians that the liberals support the conservative agenda.No amount of spinning can change the fact that if you don’t vote against it,you SUPPORT it.As a side bar,for the second day in a row,MSM reports that Dion’s call to the troops to ready for an election was ignored.Unheard of in federal politics.Looks like he is on his way out,election or no election.

#19 Michael on 02.26.08 at 5:58 pm

Swab, swab, swab…the sound of Harper mopping the floor with Dion as his mop.

#20 Zorpheous on 02.26.08 at 6:00 pm

Well lets hope for the best. Since it looks like we are stuck with Harper and his one trick pony for now.

Lets just hope Flaherty doesn’t screw Canada the way he screwed up Ontario, when he drove Ontario off the economic road and placed us in a deficit ditch.

While I haven’t heard the analysis or read the budget, from what I read here, it sounds like my family gets screwed again, no tax relief.

#21 Harry S on 02.26.08 at 6:12 pm

Garth, seriously:

Is the Liberal party now the Conservative Rump ??

#22 Charles Oxley on 02.26.08 at 6:17 pm

Cartoon is right — dimbo jimbo about to give a speech while the good ship Canada lurches in the sea, slowly sinking.

. . . and a government in Ottawa which has just issued the third consecutive budget that sets a new all-time record for spending.

Which is precisely what dubya is doing in the US — spending taxpayers’ money as if it belongs to him, and him alone and not being bothered with the eventual outcome.

harper, who is one of dubya’s disciples, has chosen to follow his savior’s mantra and is thus spending us into a deeper and deeper hole. Three consecutive, ever-increasing budgets? That is not very fiscal, or conservative.

The following generation are the ones who will have to clean up what’s left over after we’re all gone.

More eye-candy for CRAP dreamers, which achieves little, if anything at all.

#23 slg on 02.26.08 at 6:25 pm

I’m waiting for the analysts in the next day or two, when they absorb it.

If you want a “Harper majority” – vote NDP.

Did you hear what the NDP want? Good grief – we will be in deficit according to experts in the next year or two and the NDP want to spend more? I certainly wouldn’t let an NDP’r handle my bankbook.

#24 Charles Oxley on 02.26.08 at 6:36 pm

Greenspan (who he?) says Gulf should drop the dollar, and . . .

http://tinyurl.com/2pjms7

. . . Russia plans to switch to trading with rubles. Adios, greenback!

http://tinyurl.com/2oycxx

#25 Harry S on 02.26.08 at 6:38 pm

By James- Chatham on 02.26.08 5:19 pm

Could someone clear up the scerarios for me, please?

If the Bloq or NDP put forth an amendment, the Libs don’t want election so all they do is vote against along with CPC. Amendment defeated.

But what happens if the Libs put forward an amendment? We can assume the NDP and Bloq will vote for it and the amendment will pass. If the CPC votes against, we have an election.

But what if the CPC say, “Never thought of that. Good idea we agree,” and support the amendment. Do we still go to the polls?

I ask because the CPC seems to be taking the many Libs ideas to heart.
………………………………..

Very good points, James … but what you fail to appreciate is that apparently as many as 70 Liberal MPs adamantly don’t want another election soon, and particularly on the Budget.

So if Dion presents a Liberal amendment to the Budget and 70 Liberal MPs abstain or are absent, the amendment would fail … and Dion would obviously have to resign as Liberal leader.

I think the doomsday scenario you paint is a non-starter .. unless Dion wants to commit political hara kiri in the HoCs in full public view ..!!!

James .. do you have any more good questions ..???

#26 Charles Oxley on 02.26.08 at 6:42 pm

US foreclosures now appear to be increasing.

http://tinyurl.com/2thku5

#27 Ike on 02.26.08 at 6:53 pm

“Mr. Harper, after lying to income trust investors, lying to Atlantic Canadians, ripping up the Kyoto Accord, reneging on the Kelowna Accord to First Nations, welching on a promise to create 125,000 child care spaces a year, doing nothing about climate change, firing our nuclear regulator, declaring the Quebec people a nation and presiding over the gutting of the manufacturing sector in southern Ontario, now wants an election. Desperately.

“Why? Because he fears it’ll all get worse.

“So do I. Bring it on.” –posted by Garth Turner on 02.07.08 @ 9:37 pm

On February 7, 15 9:37 p.m. Garth said that PMSH wanted an election desperately, and Garth’s challenge was to “bring it on.”

What are we to make of those words now?

#28 Charles Oxley on 02.26.08 at 6:55 pm

dubya’s as mad as heaven and he’s not gonna take it anymore!

Look for more “Iran has WMD and we don’t” barf spewing forth.

http://tinyurl.com/yrph5s

#29 Harry S on 02.26.08 at 6:56 pm

Garth:

Here is what Susan Delacourt is saying about you and Dion in her Star Blog:

http://thestar.blogs.com/politics/

4:35 p.m. Dion is here. It doesn’t sound like he’s crazy about this “very modest” budget. He’s not taking any questions.

He’s decided it’s not worth provoking an election. There it is.

4:30 p.m. Garth Turner wants the Liberals to fight an election over this budget. But he’s not sure what Dion thinks.

The former Conservative-turned-Liberal, MP for Halton, is one of the most hawkish in the caucus, in wanting to provoke the government’s collapse. And he thinks all the ingredients are there for a good fight. But he’s wandering around this lobby like the rest of us, waiting to see what Dion decides. Clearly, the leader has decided to keep this decision to himself.
………………………………………………………

If this is true does this mean that you will vote against the Budget regardless of what Dion wants?

I expect you will vote in favour of the Afghanistan Motion, but you must stay true to your political principles and vote against the upcoming February 26th Budget if this is what you have decided.

It would be unconscionable for you to vote for the Harper Budget, after all that Harper has done to you and what you believe he has done to the country.

Stay the course you have chosen, Garth … udaman …!!!

#30 Murray H Miskin on 02.26.08 at 6:57 pm

The budget makes clear that the current government is out of ideas, and because of bad decisions which the minority Parliament upheld, with Liberal acceptance, it is intentionally incapable of doing anything to help with the growing economic crisis outside of Alberta. Once again a cowardly Liberal response will make the public believe the Conservative ads that Stefan is not a leader. It appears to me that he, and you Garth, are wanting to force an election, but others more interested in job security than principles are holding you back. The longer this Government is allowed to have its way at the expense of Canada the more likely it is that ultimately Mr. Harper will get a majority government by default when the election finally happens. And the world will not be a better place. As a Liberal I am very disappointed by our party’s reaction of supporting more undoing of our country’s values. What can we do to help you fight this further deterioration of Canadian values?

#31 SUE on 02.26.08 at 7:02 pm

I love How everyone is Blaming the Liberals. Shit Most of you arseholes Voted for Harper Last Time,so LIVE with What You F’ing Voted into Office.You PCers let Harper Bamboozle You like the Republicans Allowed Bush,WHY because You God Damn Well cared More about getting CONservatives Back in Power than what the Hell would happen to the Country under Harper. It was All there if You had Bothered too look and Cared instead off Blaming the LIBERALS.So I say Liberals Keep the CPC in until 09,let the CONservatives be reminded of what the CONservatives do To Canada and The Hell with the CONS and the NDP for they both moved so FAR Left and So Far Right that thier Arses are Welded together. I’ve changed my mind from yesterday when I thought we Needed an Election,Now I think Canadians Have to HURT a LOT so as the FAR RIGHT CONservatives will be Slaughtered and never again have a Chance at ruining the Country.A Little tough Love won’t hurt anyone,and maybe next time Canadians will use thier bloody heads instead of thier Partisans Bullshit.I didn’t Vote for Garth last time because I Didn’t Trust Harper and The Liberals Might have had Adscam,but that was to Keep the Country from falling Apartand yes they Screwed up Royally,but they were NEVER as Bad and Damaging as HARPER.So I Judged the Liberals better Managers and You Belly Aching Arseholes Wanted a CONservative as PM.So Now Live Wuith it it’s called Accountibility Oh Yeah CONservatives don’t Know the Meaning of that Word. How God Damn Stupid could You be Not to have watch the Bush Republican’s in Action and to Vote for the Same Type of Bastard Here. So No It’s Not the Liberal Voters Fault or the Liberal Oppositions Fault It’s The CONservative Voters and the Desease that they WILLING Infected Canada with. You Wanted IT Now Live With IT. Sorry For the rant but I’m an independent Voter who HAS mostly Voted PC,but I Knew Harper was a Bush Clone Why couldn’t More Progressives See that Also???

#32 James- Chatham on 02.26.08 at 7:02 pm

By Harry S on 02.26.08 4:53 pm

Rae on the left, Ignatieff on the right,
Dion in the middle holding the two together and finding concensus.

Sounds good to me and far better than Harper on the right actively discouraging other points of view.

#33 Bill-Muskoka on 02.26.08 at 7:20 pm

Ah, yes! So, Global National has this ‘poor’ couple from Whitby, Dim Jim’s riding, on the news tonight whining about how terrible things will be. They both work for GM and make $70K a YEAR, which means their household income is $140K per year

They think $250 MILLION of Canadian taxpayer money is TOO LITTLE to support the lifestyle they have GLUTTONLY BECOME ACCUSTOMED TO! My soul bleeds for them, it really, really does. I also CRAP balls of CRAP over their plight! Where is my Air Canada BARF BAG?

Then, on comes Rick Mercer’s Rant, and I am APPLAUDING! Rick takes on POLLS! Yes, he, too, has been waiting 15 YEARS to get that ‘call!’

Do the pollsters, still using techniques from 1960’s, call cell phones, the Gen X people? NO! When do they call? Between 5PM and 9PM when people, who have a family or social life ignore the phone calls from people they cannot ID.(God invented Caller ID just to save us from them BTW).

So, who is participating in these ‘polls’? Watch Rick’s Rant and find out. He sums it up PERFECTLY!

GAWD, my heart just wept for them….NOT!

So,with the MOE’s and other meaningless stats that some here love to regurgitate like a dog returning to its vomit, should we have a goobernment mamiking policy based on ‘POLLS’? Guess my answer!

You may now return to your bickering.

Garth,

Thanks for the ‘bludget’ explanation. I know we all feel better knowing where the shaft will be inserted!

“A mile wide, and an inch deep!” Yes, Harper and his minions are out of their depth in a car park puddle, just as Dim Jim was as Minister of GFinagling in Ontario, or should that be pronounced Onharrio?

I now return you to your program in progress!

#34 maybe Rhino? on 02.26.08 at 7:22 pm

cliche

“no guts… no glory”

Looks like it will be a long time before LPOC get any glory.

And, a long time before there is a viable option to counter a dictatorial HoC.

Disgusting.

#35 Robert Gibbs on 02.26.08 at 7:22 pm

More smoke & mirrors from Flaherty’s Carnival Canada show.

And I think demon Stevie’s head was rotating more than Linda Blair’s.

#36 Bill-Muskoka on 02.26.08 at 7:23 pm

CO2 To Help Producing Biofuel

By Greg W., Oakville on 02.26.08 5:49 pm

BAN SOFT DRINKS! HELP REDUCE OUR CO2 OUTPUT! Add Champaigne as well. You Fizzy Heads! CARBON TAX COKE!

#37 Charles Oxley on 02.26.08 at 7:25 pm

I’m surprised that CTV actually ran this story. After all, CTV is unabashedly a right-wing TV troll, in cahoots with CRAP.

Thought they would have said that the sun shines out of dimbo jimbo’s a*s, with nary a cloud in sight.

Then again, with CRAP spending habits the way they are, what else can anyone expect?

http://tinyurl.com/2t2ja9

#38 Bob R. on 02.26.08 at 7:26 pm

Good to see charles spouting the standard U.S.bad,Everyone else good liberal garbage.When will you lieberals learn that we have our OWN country,and lose your fixation on the united states.Constant whining about what our neighbor does shows that you have nothing positive to offer.Just childish crying because big bad Dubya isn’t doing what you want.GET OVER IT!

#39 Leasa on 02.26.08 at 7:35 pm

By Zorpheous on 02.26.08 6:00 pm

Evening Zorph, how many balanced budgets with a surplus did Mr. Flaherty bring in? That is after the NDP got through bankrupting Ontario?

Mr. Flaherty had a one time $2 billion deficit after BSE & SARS. Whoop-dee-do.

He did a fine job for Ontario. The Prov. Liberals are still enjoying the benefits of many of the policies that Mr. Flaherty put in place.

Ta Ta for now! Leasa

#40 Bill-Muskoka on 02.26.08 at 7:37 pm

Lets just hope Flaherty doesn’t screw Canada the way he screwed up Ontario, when he drove Ontario off the economic road and placed us in a deficit ditch.

By Zorpheous on 02.26.08 6:00 pm

You might wish to recall the NORAD term ‘Confidence is LOW! I repeat, confidence is LOW!’

Bend right over, spread ‘em wide. Dim Jim’s a figurin’ right up your backside!’

K-Y!

K-Y Jelly!

Dim Jim’s favourite salve!

He’s itchin’

You’re twitchin’

Look out cause here it comes!

#41 david on 02.26.08 at 7:44 pm

Garth: While Mr Dion has responded immediately after the budget came down that the Liberals would not vote against it.Is there any chance of a change in mind by the leader once he has an opportunity to reflect on the significance of supporting Mr.Harper once again.What a disappointment in our Official Opposition !!!,Jack,Elizabeth and Gilles are all set to go….what is holding Mr.Dion back?

#42 David Halfkenny on 02.26.08 at 7:54 pm

I TOLD YOU SO !!!

I got it right on the motion for the war and the budget. I indicated the budget would have an appeal to Hargroove and the cities. To defeat it would be at your peril.

I think it is Harper 3 and Dion 0. Harper won on the war, the crime bill and now the budget. There is no other way to spin it. The lame excuses from the Liberals who were interviewed just do not cut it.

However, we could have an election if the Liberals put forward a non confidence motion and it passes. The Liberals will build in a safe guard against this by having members absent form the house to ensue their motion does not pass unless the conservatives vote for it and defeat themselves.

I guess in order to get an election we will have to wait for the next budget in the fall or early spring 2009.

#43 AM in BC on 02.26.08 at 8:00 pm

So Harper ‘borrowed’ Liberal budget policies so as to avoid an election, Liberal MP’s play along so as to avoid an election, and Liberal voters are just supposed to say that’s OK, and it’s back to business as usual for PMSH.

Shame on you, Liberal MPs.

I’ve had it with the Liberals – from now on my vote goes to the Greens.

#44 SJ on 02.26.08 at 8:09 pm

I don’t quite get what a lot of you are talking about. I want the cons gone as much as Garth does here, but how exactly does the Liberal party start an election over a budget they practically agree with?

There is nothing to fight over. It’s all exactly what Dion said, a watered down Liberal budget. If they started an election on this platform, people would look to them for an alternative outlook on Canada’s current economy, and it would (at this point) look like the con one. So what’s the point? There are going to be other times, hopefully ones with some more to fight about.

I dunno, the Liberals have certainly fought this battle wrong, and have probably missed a chance or two to start a good fight. They need a new strategist. Not to mention some bigger balls. If I am to take what the media says at face value, there are some pussies in that party that need to put their neck on the line.

When it comes time to actually vote, I’ll see where they are at, otherwise it may be another lost Liberal vote.

#45 Robert Gibbs on 02.26.08 at 8:18 pm

I think it’s time for those who complain about the Liberals not yet bringing down the CONS to reflect a little more and consider that it may be wiser to wait for more favourable conditions, since, after all, what would be the point of an election if Deceivin’ Stephen and his crooked CON cronies were returned to power.

#46 brain on 02.26.08 at 8:24 pm

Personally, I like the idea of 5 grand a year untaxed in a special savings account that has no penalty for withdrawal.

And the cost?

It should have been done years ago when our nation could have afforded it more easily. And the projected cost? I’ve got the New Cons running deficits this year before this tax cut was introduced. Why now? Canadians won’t know the negative effects on federal coffers until next year.

The thing I learned about budgets, where is that trusty link…

http://www.taxpayer.com/pdf/Federal_Program_Spending_and_Revenues_1961-2009.pdf

The above link reveals the history of spending, interest on debt, debt reduction/addition, growing GDP, the hard numbers for the most part of where this nation has been. GDP and government revenue has grown in every year, other than 2001 and 2002. I keep splashing this link on Garths blog in the hopes that it sinks into peoples heads one of two things.

Firstly, there is no such thing as endless growth and when shrinkage comes, so will deficits from this New Con government. What will cause it? A U.S. recession that bursts the commodity bubble. Why will deficits result? The New Con strategy doesn’t prepare for it. Will Canada’s tax revenue shrink? It has no choice but to, with the tax cuts that the New Cons have put in place. Couple it with increased spending in the face of a GDP that could turn negative this year and deficits will follow regardless of Flarethy’s spin. Flarehty can call it a prudent budget all he wants, but there were unsustainable tax cuts in the Oct. mini budget that will tip the scales to a deficit beginning with the new calandar year.

The link below gives people an idea of what sectors have suffered and which ones are doing well through rail traffic loads.
http://www.statcan.ca/Daily/English/080226/d080226e.htm

Things are down with train and truck shipments across the line, here’s why, and its no surprise.

http://www.cbc.ca/money/story/2008/02/26/loonie.html

What is the high dollar and ailing U.S. economy doing to trade surplus’s? Its not good. (and neither is the torrential M & A’s of Can corps by U.S. and other foreign multinationals)

http://www.cbc.ca/money/story/2008/02/14/trade.html?ref=rss

If these trade surplus’s shrink and commodity valuations drop coupled by bank writedowns and M & A’s of Can corps, Canada’s government revenue will drop this year from last especially with New Con tax cuts. Couple this with increased spending and deficits will follow.

Canadians should start preparing for hard times regardless of what Flarethy denial and spin says.

#47 Realist on 02.26.08 at 8:26 pm

James:
An amendment to the budget is not a confidence motion per say, as technically the government is the only party able to put money bills to the house. Therefore an amendment to the budget proposed by an opposition party does not technically become a confidence motion because the opposition is not permitted to spend money. To the best of my understanding for an amendment to the budget to become an actually confidence motion it would first have to pass the house, it would have to first pass the house as a non-money bill. Then by passing the house as a non-money bill it would be placed into the budget, once in the budget it would become part of the confidence vote that is the budget. (Caveat: I’m by no means an expert it parliamentary procedure, my real area of focus is federalism and nationalism (university poli-sci student), so this is just my best guess on the scenario based on what I know about money bills and parlament.)
Sue On:
Thank you very much; your rant was hilariously inarticulate. It’s been a rough day and I really do appreciate the chuckle. But for the sake of future generations I implore you to vote for the party with the best education platform in Ontario’s next provincial election. As education reform is something that is clearly needed in your little neck of the woods.

#48 Harry S on 02.26.08 at 8:30 pm

By Murray H Miskin on 02.26.08 6:57 pm

The longer this Government is allowed to have its way at the expense of Canada the more likely it is that ultimately Mr. Harper will get a majority government by default when the election finally happens. And the world will not be a better place. As a Liberal I am very disappointed by our party’s reaction of supporting more undoing of our country’s values. What can we do to help you fight this further deterioration of Canadian values?
………………………………..

Three questions, Murray H.:

1. Are the Liberals now a Conservative rump, and,

2. why do up to 70 Liberal MPs refuse to follow Dion into an election, and,

3. will Dion need to be replaced as Liberal leader before any next election?

These three crucial questions must be answered before any Liberal like you demands another election and putting Canadians through an election they will not want before October 2009.

Thank you.

#49 James- Chatham on 02.26.08 at 8:44 pm

By TS on 02.26.08 5:50 pm

401(K) and the givernment equivalent (can’t remember the number) = company defined benefit pension plan.

IRA = RRSP

Roth IRA almost like TFSA except the Roth IRA has lots of penalties for withdrawl before 59.

But given the TFSA won’t have the same effects on GIS and OAS, and can be transfered tax free to beneficiaries other than spouse… is the RRSP going to go the way of the Dodo?

One advantage to the government of the TFSA over the RRSP, they get their tax money when you earn it, not when you take it out of your savings 30 – 40 years later!

#50 brain on 02.26.08 at 8:53 pm

By C. B. Innes on 02.26.08 4:58 pm

Thanks for the detail. Hadn’t looked at the fine print yet and if its true what you say, Canadians should be extremely worried with what these crown corps represent.

People just don’t get it with Harper. Its about decentralization of federal powers. Why? To encourage more corporate control and in case Canadians are missing it, its not Can corps we are talking about here but U.S. corps.

Harpers NCC agenda has always been about U.S. expansion of Canada’s economic sectors. Its why the New Cons are trying to destroy the wheatboard and paving the way for the privatization of Canada’s federal crown corps. And its also why this New Con government is looking the other way with Canada’s largest market cap corps being bought out by U.S. multinationals, especially the unethical buyout of MDA by a U.S. defense contractor.

There’s a trade war going on here, Harper is on the side of the red white and blue and its time Dion did something about it other than waiting for polls to etch past the New Cons nationally.

Most federal policies don’t see their manifestation of fruits/stinkers until at least a year to two down the road so there’s a chess game going on here. The thing Dion has to understand if he really is to be a true leader of this country, is that benefiting off of the misery of others is not a true leaders way to power. There is such a thing as prevent/damage control. Its time for Dion to understand fully, why he can no longer sit and wait for movement at the polls. Besides… Nano’s most recent poll had the Libs at 46%. Its not going to get much better for him in Ontario. If Nano’s numbers are solid, the Libs will form a small minority government if called and its worth going for to undue some New Con damage at this point.

In my view, the Libs cannot wait much longer to force an election. It makes sense to watch polls nationally to wait for a concensus to do so… but the longer the Libs wait, the more responsible they will become for the negatives that will or already have hit this nation by a New Con government.

Harper has been a major embarassment and failure both on the environment and foreign affairs, but the economy and dwindling Canadian ownership of its own industry, banking and service sectors are what Canadians vote most on.

Liberal waiting for New Con failures will come at the expense of all Canadians. The price is just to high for Liberals to build success on economic failure. I’m with Garth. We have to take this New Con government down ASAP.

#51 Charles Oxley on 02.26.08 at 8:58 pm

What about Bob?

By Bob R. on 02.26.08 7:26 pm

Apparently, I hit on a raw nerve. Never mind, Bob. You and Harry S can always go dance the can-can together — you’re not much good for anything else.

neo-con CRAPpists and rethuglikans are one and the same breed. Same story, different country.

#52 Pat. G. on 02.26.08 at 9:05 pm

I was hoping, hoping, hoping….but then, back to reality.Dion isn’t supporting the budget; he’s just going to let it pass!

When I think about it though, this was not probably a good thing on which to fight an election. I heard quite a number of people interviewed on TV who didn’t even know there was a budget being presented today. Others didn’t seem to know what or why they would want certain things in it. Tax cuts sounded good. And who wouldn’t like tax cuts??? Like what else would be more important to spend the money on?

I think too many people don’t understand how a budget can work for all and get more bang for the buck for all sometimes.

I can think of a great reason to fight an election–one that Mr. Dion would be very comfortable with. Could this be possible?

Again, Mr. Innes has me worried though.
Privatizing crown corporations? this would just fit Harper’s agenda. Who would ever get E.I.? Good-bye truth on our public broadcaster? Good-bye control over our institutions? And to think it would be just slipped into a confidence matter. This is scary stuff and I really think we should be on the alert for our country becoming “incrementally” “unrecognizable”.

#53 Bob R. on 02.26.08 at 9:14 pm

Good comeback Charles…for a moron

#54 cpm on 02.26.08 at 9:15 pm

Harper Rules,

Turner Drools!!!!

#55 dj on 02.26.08 at 9:25 pm

“Mr. Flaherty had a one time $2 billion deficit after BSE & SARS. Whoop-dee-do.

He did a fine job for Ontario. The Prov. Liberals are still enjoying the benefits of many of the policies that Mr. Flaherty put in place.

Ta Ta for now! Leasa”

You’re right and so are the people of Walkerton after the Cons CUT the Ministry of the Environment almost in half!

#56 No rubber left on Old Tory Tire on 02.26.08 at 9:26 pm

Where does the rubber hit the road?

Where is the great fiscal conservative Conservative Leader we were promised?

The tax free savings account is a vinegar-on-a-sponge to the 50% of the 70% of seniors who have or will enter retirement without significant savings.

But listen Pweeples, imagine what if Steve had #1 not broken all those promises, and #2 done this budget last spring. Well, for #3, today he’d been sitting on a majority.

What kind of leader does things ass-backwards? A real Tory leader gets a majority, and then rams it to the people.

#57 SUE on 02.26.08 at 9:58 pm

AHHH!!!! “Realist” I’m sorry I Didn’t think a person had to be as”Educated”as YOU to come on Garth’s blog.Now I may be just a “GED GRAD” and been out of HS since ’70,but My Opinion is WORTH Just as Much as Your Ignorant “Educated” F’ing Opinion. As Some Great mind Once said “Opinions are Like ARSEHOLES we all got One and we all Think ours DON”T STINK”.Or As I say ‘We all Got one and we can ALL be one at One time or Another’ or in your “Realist” State Just One BIG ARSEHOLE all the Time.Oh I’m am Glad I Made you Laugh,but You’re the Typical HArperCON You Enjoy Laughing AT Others for You’re All Such F’ing LOWLIFES it’s the Only Way you think Makes you Look “Strong”.I’ve lived too long to let a little Piece of CRAP “Realist” or his Bully Blowhard “leader” make me Feel Less Than Them by thier Actions or thier Words.You Probably have a Hard time Understanding Mr.Dion whereas I Have No problem whatsoever. All it takes is an OPEN mind and Willing EARS something that the HArperCONS will Never understand.I’m sure You HArperCONS end up on Garth’s blog by mistake ,you must end up here on your way to the borg,try using CAPS next time You’ll find the BORG.

#58 MJH on 02.26.08 at 10:10 pm

How sad! You trash the budget at every turn and then your party supports it–what the hell is going on??

#59 Markus D. on 02.26.08 at 10:22 pm

As a political observer who is aware of most of the players in the game I too am disappointed with another day of CRAP rule. That said maybe Dion is reading the Canadian public correctly and is making parliament work.

There are a couple of factors that make me less disappointed at this moment. First, I think Dion is smarter than a lot of people realize and is often underestimated. Rather than view him as falling into traps (as in the person who said he is 0-3 right now) maybe he is strategically dancing around the ring denying Harper the election he so disparately wants. Maybe it is actually 3-0 and nobody quite realizes it.

Second, more time means more rope for Harper to hang himself with. It is not like the CRAPers have done that great a job thus far, and it is only a matter of time before an issue comes around that is so plump that when picked will be extra delicious. In other words maybe patience really is a virtue.

Finally, with the upcoming by-elections hopefully the Liberals can gain some momentum (come on DMCR!!!). This will hopefully strengthen the Liberal team even further, and make an even greater contrast between the two parties.

So, all in all, I think we Liberals who keep up on politics and hate Harper and his policies have good reason to be disappointed. The rest of the citizenry just want a government that works so they can do whatever it is they do with their lives. I hope that with time the average voter clues in to the direction Harper wants to take this country, and when they’ve had enough the Liberals can be there to offer a progressive, honest, clean, transparent, and determined vision for our country. Until then I guess we’ll just have to keep up the good fight … on garth.ca, lol.

#60 TS on 02.26.08 at 10:23 pm

James-Chatham,
I basically understand the differences..

Here’s where I’m coming from, the TFSA says that lowly Canadians can now use this “eligible investment vehicle”… so … “savings can be used to purchase a new car, renovate a house, start a small business or take a family vacation” quote from their brochure.

Just how does the government think most Canadians purchase stuff? Through savings accounts that have been double dipped on taxes, because any interested earned on account is added to my income. Now I don’t know about you or anybody else but I don’t see anywhere in this brochure that says it’s going to pay me more in interest to allow me to be registered in this new investment vehicle. A savings account is a savings account, only I’m not beholden on how much I’m able to save yearly. Talk about penalizing savers…and we buy into this benevolence.

My God we’re a gullible lot. If it’s not nailed down/spent they want a slice. Nonsense. No wonder, we’re always looking for ways around the system. Maybe we should just put everything on credit cards and keep the money revolving…then the fed can go tax the money lenders on their exorbitant interest rates… and share in the pie too.

Comments by Jeff Rubin, Chief Economist for the CIBC
“It was fine. I mean, there was nothing outrageous, nothing egregious, nothing that gives the opposition any targets. But remember this was really the economic statement. The budget was in the fall. I find it bizarre that the tax savings account was made the centre piece of this budget because it was really trivial. They are forecasting a $50-million tax expenditure next year for three-and-a-half million taxpayers. It works out to $14 per person”….

It’s “trivial”, and we see this as manna from heaven…big bro’s gonna let me keep some of my hard earned money tax free…yippee!!

#61 Brent Fullard on 02.26.08 at 10:30 pm

You may as well substitute “Liberal” for “NDP” in the following press release

I am beginning to wonder about these Liberals. Maybe they think it’s okay that the CEO of OMERs announced yesterday that OMERs will be focused on buying up the undervalued income trusts and not pay taxes, courtesy of Fraudulent Jim. Every Fraudster needs an accomplice. How will that solve the problem of alleged tax leakage? Perhaps the Liberals are just as happy as the NDP to allow the creation of a two tiered pension system in Canada. Do the Liberals understand what “tax arbitrage means, in which pension funds exploit average Canadians on the basis of government tax policies and gross fiscal inequities. Where is the effective opposition in this country? Or are we all supposed to pretend that tax leakage is real and Stephen Harper a wise and benevolent leader? Who is running the Liberals? Power Corp?

Attention Business/Political Editors:
NDP’s Blind Adherence to Conservative’s Income Trust Agenda Promotes Further Inequity in Canada’s Two Tiered Pension System, so says CAITI

TORONTO, Jan. 23 /CNW/ – The Income Trust issue is one that profoundly
affects the ability of senior Canadians to provide for retirement income. It
materially affects Canadian’s standard of living during their retirement
years. The Conservative’s Income Trust agenda is being advanced for the
benefit of narrow corporate interests. It is being falsely advanced on
unproven assertions of tax leakage and other unproven, yet quantifiable,
assertions contained in the Notice of and Means Motion to Amend the Income Tax
Act. These measures will eliminate this popular retirement investment choice
for the average Canadian. This policy eliminates important retirement
investment choices for Canadians, both now and in the future.
As Stephen Harper himself quoted in his opinion editorial dated
October 25, 2005 which appeared in the National Post in which he cites a
letter from CARP, which states:
“Seniors are actually enraged frightened and panicked about potentially
losing retirement savings that they count on for the essentials of daily
living”
Therefore by blindly adhering to the Conservative’s newly minted policy
to eliminate income trusts as a means to provide retirement income, the NDP is
helping foster financial uncertainty and unnecessary hardship on those of
retirement age and the most vulnerable members of Canadian society, namely
seniors. Many long standing NDP supporters are bewildered by this unwholly
alliance between the NDP and the Conservatives on this issue: “We are shocked
that the NDP has supported the Harper government on its attempts to steal our
retirement monies. My parents and relatives helped found the CCF and the NDP.
I am sure they are turning over in their graves at what seems to be an
illogical political move by the NDP”
Canada has a two tiered retirement system. 30% of Canadians are members
of defined benefit pension plans, whereas 70% are not. Those who are include
our elected representatives in Ottawa and the 280,000 members of the public
civil service in Ottawa whose pension assets are managed by the Public Sector
Pension Investment Board. These generous pension arrangements are true for all
Members of Parliament, regardless of their political party affiliation.
At present, Canadians are generally acceptant of this seeming disparity
in the manner in which certain Canadians’ financial security is assured,
whereas other’s financial security is based on virtual self reliance.
Others consider it an inequity. The Conservatives’ Income Trust policy
and the NDP’s adherence to it, dramatically exacerbates this inequity in the
minds of many Canadians who are members of the 70% majority who do not have a
pension. On the Income Trust issue, the majority is being treated like a
minority. The majority needs to understand how it is actually being treated
like an abused minority, as important choices will be taken from the majority
and be preserved and enhanced for the minority.
Unlike the changes contemplated a year ago, the Conservatives have
implemented a subtle yet profound change to their tax policy. Mr. Flaherty’s
brand of so-called tax fairness “carves out” the ability of Canada’s largest
pension funds to replicate the ongoing tax-free economics (at the trust level)
of income trusts by holding private trusts in their private equity portfolios.
Our organization will therefore be asking the officials representing the
Department of Finance at the upcoming Public Hearings the policy reasons
behind the not so subtle impact of this change by asking the question:
“How can something that is being denied the average Canadian, on the
basis of its presumed negative effect on Ottawa’s tax base be allowed to
persist for the benefit of those in our public civil service and others so
advantaged?”
Not being slow to take advantage of this “carve out”, the Public Sector
Pension Investment Board (PSP) will make good use of this exception in the
recently announced purchase of Telesat Canada from BCE Inc for $3.4 billion.
Telesat will be the financial equivalent of an income trust and will be held
in the pension plan’s growing private equity portfolio. PSP’s investment in
Telesat will not be taxed in the manner that Flaherty would tax such an
investment in an individual’s RRSP. This is a gross inequity that only serves
to exacerbate the two tired pension system in Canada, making things harder for
the 70% and better for the 30%.
The Canadian Association of Income Trusts Investors calls upon the NDP to
fundamentally rethink its irrational adherence to Flaherty’s inherently unfair
and unsubstantiated policy to tax Canadians’ ability to fund their retirement.
This only increases the level of retirement taxation that exists today. During
2004 Canadians paid $9 billion in retirement taxes on $52 billion of
retirement income, making it the second largest source of personal taxation,
second only to income taxes on employment income.
The NDP should be welcoming of the upcoming Public Hearings, rather than
strenuously voting against an opportunity for the truth about income trusts to
be revealed. The Public Hearings need to focus on the five quantifiable and
yet to date, wholly unproven, assertions that constitute the enabling
legislation: the Ways and Means Motion.

For further information: go to http://www.caiti.info; Canadian Association of
Income Trust Investors (CAITI), [email protected]

#62 Brent Fullard on 02.26.08 at 10:31 pm

How long do you suppose it will be before Flaherty starts double taxing his new TFSA?

“Unlike the Liberals, a conservative government will never double tax our new parsimonious Tax Free Savings Account” Steve Harper

TFSA: Trusting Flaherty Signals Amnesia

One question: Can I hold a Manulife Income Plus in my TSFA? Or maybe a measly $5,000 a year won’t meet Dominic’s threshold for investment. It barely covers the annual administration fees.

#63 Andrea Timmons on 02.26.08 at 10:44 pm

The way Dion spoketoday after the budget was that ALL the Conservative baits for getting the opposition to force an election were now gone, if I got it right. He mentioned Afghanistan;Liberal Senators would pass the crime bill; and the Budget.
So what does it all mean Garth?
Thanks for making it a little clearer for me.
Is the Spring Election a dead issue for the Liberals now?

#64 Calgary Junkie on 02.26.08 at 10:55 pm

Okay, let me get this straight …

This budget is nowhere near what Layton wanted.

It’s also nowhere near what Duceppe wanted.

And a few days ago, Dion said that he would put $3 billion of the surplus towards the debt, and the rest on infrastructure.

And obviously, Flaherty delivered nothing remotely close to what Dion wanted either.

So why isn’t Dion joining the unsatisfied Layton and Duceppe in bringing down this government ?

#65 pissinginthetent.com on 02.26.08 at 11:04 pm

http://jimcotton.blogspot.com/2008/02/its-disappointment-but-also-letdown-is.html

#66 Marg on 02.26.08 at 11:10 pm

The messing around with EI has me concerned. What happens to the huge EI surplus? Is this an attempt by Harper to grab most of the fund, while setting up a new system as a crown corporation and just giving them start-up funding?

#67 Deny on 02.26.08 at 11:31 pm

Ok, enough is enough. If Stephane Dion is the man you claim he is, and if he has a vision, let’s do it already.

ENOUGH RUNNING AWAY!!! You’re afraid of an election? So what. Doesn’t anyone in the Liberal party have any balls anymore. This is a sham, and it’s self-preservation at it’s worst.

Call the election. Show Harper for what he is. Present an alternative vision. Just do it already.

#68 Geoffrey L. on 02.26.08 at 11:38 pm

Overall, the budget uses a shotgun approach to throw little gobs of money in all directions – a little to culture, seniors, aboriginals, infrastructure, seniors and the environment. In that, it’s consistent with the Conservative approach of vote-shopping with signle-interest tax cuts, rather than inspiring a nation with a vision and a purpose.

*****

More like a blunderbuss approach:

Blunderbuss:
By its nature, the blunderbuss is not a very precise weapon. Although it was sometimes used in a military setting, it was more effective when the goal was not to hit a specific target, but rather any one of multiple targets, such as for crowd control. During combat, the blunderbuss was a very unpredictable weapon; it could hit an entire group of enemy soldiers or miss all of them. The blunderbuss thus became a byword for inaccurate marksmanship in any field. As well, the word itself came to mean “a clumsy or stupid person”.

Geoffrey L.
Hamilton

#69 Bill-Muskoka on 02.26.08 at 11:46 pm

By No rubber left on Old Tory Tire on 02.26.08 9:26 pm

Aye, Skid marks in the sky! LMAO!

#70 Bill-Muskoka on 02.26.08 at 11:52 pm

Ah, the CPC trolls have come out in force!

Oh joyous blessing!

#71 brain on 02.26.08 at 11:53 pm

By No rubber left on Old Tory Tire on 02.26.08 9:26 pm

Not to mention the tax free savings account will only benefit those who can afford it and it won’t kick in til’ next year, likely be quite expensive and will come at a time when the economy is at a low. All it is, is a teaser of what likely won’t see the light of day.

#72 Sabrina on 02.27.08 at 12:12 am

Perhaps the Liberals not bringing down the Cons on the budget will prove to be beneficial for the party. It appears that the economy will take a downturn no matter what government is in power. Thus, it’s better for the Liberals if the Conservatives are in power during the economic slowdown so the blame can be placed upon them, and the Liberals can fashion themselves as the change Canada needs to improve the economy.

Harry S:
“given that BobRae will be a full Liberal MP on March 17th. Rae will anchor the left wing of the Liberal party while Ignateff will secure the right wing .. and Dion will be squeezed out of leadership. I think that any sensible person would agree with that analysis.”

Dion is a consensus builder, what the leader of a political party is supposed to be. Hopefully he can be the one that will bridge the differences between the left wingers who support Rae and the right wingers and Ignatieff. It seems as if Liberal supports are even starting to believe the “Dion is not a leader” mantra that the Conservatives keep repeating – unfortunate.

#73 lmf on 02.27.08 at 12:13 am

Just curious- Dion made the decision to support the budget within minutes of it being tabled. Does he not consult with his caucus on these kinds of decisions or had the caucus already voted not to go into an election before the budget was tabled?

#74 Emilie on 02.27.08 at 12:18 am

The fact is, no families will find an extra five grand just because Ottawa got the message. -end quote

This plan was for the rich in our society. You know, those whom Harper has been favouring. The rest of the unwashed can just shut up and drink the kool-aid.

And has anyone figured out just how much those who are fortunate enough to have $5,000 left over at the end of the year?

3.65% (highest) or $182.50 WOW!!! WHOP-DEE-DO!!! That should help to offset the higher costs that retailers goods have gone up because the GST went down.

Joy, joy!!!

I agree that Dion should hand Hapless and his Bobbleheads more rope. The worst is yet to come.

#75 Paul on 02.27.08 at 12:28 am

I will never vote Liberal again…
Dion has to grow a pair
How about you Garth…
All shrivelled up til Dion says so?

#76 brain on 02.27.08 at 12:34 am

Big surprise.

http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20080226/france_afghanistan_080225/20080226?hub=TopStories

No other nations are likely to come forward. Its Bush and Harper making war with the Pushtin’s (and the rest of the third world where U.S. multinationals dictate).

#77 brain on 02.27.08 at 12:40 am

http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20080213/afghan_casualties_080213/20080213?hub=Specials

We’d better get used to seeing more coffins under Harpers authoritarian rule. Harper takes his orders from U.S. multinationals, not Canadians. Its long overdue that Canadians catch on as to why. There couldn’t be a bigger U.S. multinational lobbyist in the former 5 year president of the National Citizens Coalition, et. el. Harper. Our soldiers and tax dollars are fighting a war based on a lie for U.S. multinational interests. Sad… but true.

#78 Charles Oxley on 02.27.08 at 12:55 am

Most people already know this (neo-cons don’t want to believe it), but:

Iraq’s puppet gov’t. was installed by dubya, cheney et al as a ploy to get their paws in the Middle East; there are no WMD in Iran or Iraq, and (to boot) Israel gets Iraq’s oil.

Well, whaddya know. Almost sounds like the Crusades all over again.

http://tinyurl.com/23q2cq

#79 Jennifer Smith on 02.27.08 at 1:04 am

On the one hand, I can’t see what else Dion could have done with a budget that makes teeny weeny moves in the general direction he wants.

On the other hand, the Liberals are starting to look way too much like the Blue Dog Democrats south of the border – trying to please everyone by playing the middle against the wings.

The reason this looks so much like a Liberal budget is the Liberals have strayed too far towards the centre in recent years. Dion seems to be the exception, but the majority of the old-timers are looking more like 50s Liberals than Trudeau Liberals.

If you haven’t guessed already, I identify with the latter.

To make me happy, Dion either needs to do a purge or Rae needs to step in and move the party back to the centre-left. If Iggy takes over, that’s it. I’m out. Gods only know where I’ll go.

I’m not a damned Democrat. I want my Canada back.

#80 Irene on 02.27.08 at 1:23 am

Harper has been a major embarassment and failure both on the environment and foreign affairs, but the economy and dwindling Canadian ownership of its own industry, banking and service sectors are what Canadians vote most on.

Liberal waiting for New Con failures will come at the expense of all Canadians. The price is just to high for Liberals to build success on economic failure. I’m with Garth. We have to take this New Con government down ASAP.

By brain on 02.26.08 8:53 pm

I totaly agree Brain. I believe Mr. Dion needs to heed the advice of former PM Chretien, never mind what members of his caucas thinks, call it now. We may not have agreed with Chretien on a lot of matters but he sure knew how & when to call & win an election. Give the people of Canada the power to take this Dictorial government down ASAP.

Cheers

#81 Calberta on 02.27.08 at 1:34 am

Liberal waiting for New Con failures will come at the expense of all Canadians. The price is just to high for Liberals to build success on economic failure. I’m with Garth. We have to take this New Con government down ASAP.

By brain on 02.26.08 8:53 pm

I totally agree -If the Liberals do not go to the polls they are by definition complicit in the corruption and degradation of our society and our country.
To stand by and watch the economic takeover of our country by outside interests says to me that the Liberals have no vision for Canada, they are just reactionaries to Harpers gamesmanship.
If that is the case then Dion is a historic disappointment!

#82 Liz on 02.27.08 at 2:02 am

Way Off Topic, but consider wearing pink tomorrow in support of BC’s ANTI-BULLYING DAY!

p.s., on the Budget, it’s sad. A pundit said it best: “The budget is obnoxious but not noxious.”

#83 Drew on 02.27.08 at 2:12 am

True to form, the Harper government has done a splendid job of marginalizing the Liberals. It’s high time for Dion to grow a pair, force an election and put his trust in the Canadian voter to see the PC’s for what they aren’t and haven’t been since the last election. Time and time again, Harper and his government have proven that a talent for finding themselves on the wrong side of an issue. Flaherty only sees the economy as going soft. And he’s a moron, so what else is news?

Want to know what is in store for the economy in the long term? Take a look at the trucking industry. If the trucking industry is slowing, which it most definitely is, so is the volume of freight, and that in itself should be a wake up call that there is more than a little “belt tightening” in order. Our biggest trading partner’s economy is in recession and although Shrub refuses to permit anyone in his government to say it is so, it’s a fact. Denying it, doesn’t make it go away.

All may be well for Alberta with plenty of cheap oil flowing south, but the other provinces in the country are in for a very rough ride. The sh!t is headed for the fan now and how much of a mess it makes coming out remains to be seen. The TFSA may well be a great thing for those that can take advantage of it, but I know few people who can plan on putting one thin dime into savings while standing on an unemployment line, nevermind while fighting bankruptcy due to overwhelming debt.

Time to pull the plug on these lackies. Git ‘er done, Dion!!

#84 brain on 02.27.08 at 2:17 am

Proof that Harper & Co wants the U.S. to own us all, as they say, is in the pudding. Canada is now no. 1 in the world for selling out to foreign M & A’s of Canadian corps, thanks to no protection from our government. Only the word stupid can be used to describe the New Con take on M & A’s. Then again, corrupt is likely a better word.

http://www.reportonbusiness.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20080227.wrhollow27/BNStory/Business/home

We need an election. The irreversable damage to our Canadian ownership of resources must stop before its spills into commodities such as grain from a destroyed wheatboard. Harpers version of democracy is, after all, firing elected farmers from the board to replace them with his own appointments bent on destroying the board all together.

http://www.cbc.ca/canada/saskatchewan/story/2008/01/29/ritz-barley.html

The plecibite, by the way, had less than 14% farmer participation and the questions were highly misleading. Harpers version of democracy at work.

Was Chalk River an engineered crisis by Harper? Its not a far reach.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/LAC.20080226.ISOTOPES26/TPStory

#85 Smokingjoe on 02.27.08 at 2:40 am

How about a free vote on the budget Garth?

It would be interesting to see who the hawks and the doves are in the party. It sounds like there are more doves, but should this happen, would the doves discussing holding off an election behind closed doors continue to be doves in a free vote? This would let all the constituents know how their own members feel about an upcoming election…for better or for worse…This would be the ultimate in accountability and most importantly in openness.

#86 Catherine on 02.27.08 at 4:39 am

You’re right and so are the people of Walkerton after the Cons CUT the Ministry of the Environment almost in half!

By dj on 02.26.08 9:25 pm

Yes, after the Federal Liberals cut 25 BILLION in provincial transfers.

#87 Jose Escalora on 02.27.08 at 4:43 am

Leader:
Let me decide whether I will allow myself to be bullied when I already receive the punch.

Leader (got punched): Ouch! Hey, I can take it. Just an aching and sore jaw.

No need to take a stand and fight this bully. I am hurt but, heck, I can still stand. Later, when you, Mr. Bully, is already old and sickly, then I will get back at you. By that time and when I am hale and healthy (assuming that I will be by that time), I will also punch you.

Leader to his allies: But Guys, I really want to fight this bully.

Guys: No, stop it. You don’t stand a chance. You will lose and everyone of us will get a taste of his hard fist. Don’t do it!!!

Leader: Okey. I will just take the punch but definitely I will dress down that bully. (If only words can kill).

Guys: Then do it. Show your face right across that punch. After getting hurt, curse him like a devil.

Canadians: You are supposed to fight for our interests.
Are you not in the opposition? Why are you accommodating these bullies? Are you sure you are not cohorts of these son-of-b….? Fight for us, man. We voted for you to represent our liberal ideals.

Leader: I cannot fight for you this time. I may lose. What will my guys tell me? I may also lose my leadership status.

Canadians: We voted for you to fight for our interests whenever they are to be protected and not for you to stay in office. What kind of Liberals are you?

All (Leader and Guys): We are Liberals who want to stay in office and be paid with huge salaries. We cannot risk our jobs. We may not get any employment if we lose in an election especially if there will be recession.

Canadians: Cowards! Let us go NDP or even Bloc!!! Better still let us go Greens. At least,they have balls even if they were women.

#88 Brent Fullard on 02.27.08 at 6:00 am

Memo to Ralph Goodale

http://caiti-online.blogspot.com/2008/02/memo-to-ralph-goodale.html

#89 MB on 02.27.08 at 6:18 am

“Dion isn’t supporting the budget; he’s just going to let it pass!”

By Pat. G. on 02.26.08 9:05 pm

Dear Pat,

Don’t be so sure Pat.

If I were a bettin’ man, and I’ve been known to wager a quarter here and there, I would say that Team Liberal is going to SUPPORT this budget… vote Yea!

Harper’s feeble attempt at buying votes with this budget from whatever crumbs he has left after spending the cupboard bare can and will be nullified if Team Liberal votes FOR this budget.

Dion’s got this vote-buying leader-wannabe Harper by the short and curlies. Take credit for the good feelings it gives Canadians for the $14 we will save as a result of this budget over the course of the next year.

Stick a fork in him Dion… vote FOR the budget!!!

Sincerely,
MB

Thank ALL veterans for their sacrifices:
http://www.petitiononline.com/mem0rial/petition.html

#90 Barb on 02.27.08 at 6:45 am

I hate to say it,but I told you so.Just look at the senate doublecrossing Dion.Wait until Rae brings out the Knife.

#91 PYOTR PETROBITCH on 02.27.08 at 7:40 am

Comments by Jeff Rubin, Chief Economist for the CIBC

“It was fine. I mean, there was nothing outrageous, nothing egregious, nothing that gives the opposition any targets. But remember this was really the economic statement. The budget was in the fall. I find it bizarre that the tax savings account was made the centre piece of this budget because it was really trivial. They are forecasting a $50-million tax expenditure next year for three-and-a-half million taxpayers. It works out to $14 per person”…

It’s “trivial”, and we see this as manna from heaven … big bro’s gonna let me keep some of my hard earned money tax free … yippee!!

By TS on 02.26.08 10:23 pm

Emissions for the poor, tax breaks for the wealthy

In stark contrast, the government’s last budget effectively assured wealthy oil and gas corporations that all of the federal tax breaks they currently enjoy, amounting to about $1.4 billion each year, would remain in place until at least 2010.

There is no doubt that low-income households (and many middle-income ones for that matter) need help to reduce energy use, not only because energy bills are on the rise. The poorest Canadian households already spend 13 per cent of their income on energy bills, compared to about 4 per cent of income for other households. The inability to pay energy bills is the second leading cause of evictions in cities like Toronto.

The cancelled EnerGuide program would have helped 130,000 low-income households reduce energy bills and achieve potential greenhouse gas reductions of 3.4 tonnes annually per home. Green Communities Canada, a group that delivers energy efficiency programs, estimated that the $500 million government investment would have produced $1 billion in energy savings, retrofit jobs, and other benefits – not to mention the obvious environmental payback.

http://www.thestar.com/comment/article/306147#

#92 rural on 02.27.08 at 7:47 am

What a farce, the big incentive to save by having a tax free savings account.

Assuming that you are doing well enough to be able to stash away the maximum $5000 the interest on that at 5% (and if you can get that much on a savings account please let me know where) is $250. If you have money to spare you will probably be paying around 20% taxes on your earnings for a maximum savings of $50 a year. Wow, I’m really impressed. NOT.
For those that are struggling to save a few dollars and who’s income is considerably lower the “savings” on the tax on a lesser amount would also be considerably less. A low income family managing to put away $1000 might save maybe $10 a year, every little helps but the way this is being touted you would think it is the greatest thing since sliced bread. True if you can put that kind of money away each year the tax savings will get greater but if you have that kind of spare cash laying around you don’t need the savings, once again the little guy get little or nothing and the guy with money to spare get the goodies!
What a load………

“So, Global National has this ‘poor’ couple from Whitby, Dim Jim’s riding, on the news tonight whining about how terrible things will be. They both work for GM and make $70K a YEAR, which means their household income is $140K per year
By Bill-Muskoka on 02.26.08 7:20 pm

Maybe if this couple had saved some of their way above average income they would not have to worry, that is about 5 times our family income and we still manage to save a little!!

#93 Herb on 02.27.08 at 7:57 am

“Liberal waiting for New Con failures will come at the expense of all Canadians. The price is just to high for Liberals to build success on economic failure.” – brain, 8:53 pm last night

Darn you for getting it right again! When you eliminate the eyewash, that is the message coming loud and clear from the Liberal Party. And for this they expect support? Only after Harper has disaffected enough Canadians to hand another party the government by default.

As to bringing down the Harper Government ASAP, on what issue, since the Throne Speech, Afghanistan, Crime Bill and Budget gambits have been declined?

#94 Herb on 02.27.08 at 8:12 am

Back to Afghanistan …

A retired foreign service officer with some knowledge of the area suggests that CDS Hillier “has led Canada’s government by the nose for long enough.”

However, Gar Purdy concludes that “a bad policy that has the government’s full support is not about to be abandoned, and it is apparent the government needs the general more than he needs the government.”

The whole article at http://www.canada.com/ottawacitizen/news/opinion/story.html?id=06507a60-114a-434c-b18c-37b1179b8f95&p=1

#95 PYOTR PETROBITCH on 02.27.08 at 8:13 am

“Mr. Huckleberry Finn … “

“Yes, Mr. Thomas Sawyer … “

TS—“Have you heard how Flim-Flam Dim-Jim Flaherty is going to help us paint OUR FENCE?”

HF—“That won’t happen ‘til ‘09, Tom, and it will have no effect on middle and lower income people.”

TS—“Who says, Huck?”

HF—“They say, Tom …”

http://www.thestar.com/fpLarge/video/307154

TS—“I’m really surprised at your cynicism, Huck.”

HF—“Well Tom, I’m surprised that your trip through the labyrinth has not left you aMAZED.”

TS—“Appears to be based on, ‘them what has, gets.’”

HF—“Yes, it’s EXACTLY the same kind of action Flim-Flam Dim-Jim Flaherty took when his answer to Family Benefits Administration in Ontario was to CLOSE THE OFFICE DOWN, when he discovered the FATHERS were $1.2 Billion in arrears.”

Note: The FBA offices WOULD NEVER have been reopened had it not been for Peter Kormos and Shelley Martel, ‘paying a visit,’ struggling with the security guard, and then being pursued in the courts by the Harris regime.

Will anyone be prepared to BET the Flim-Flam Dim-Jim Flaherty fence painting project does not receive WIDE mainstream middle and lower income participation?

Elaborate illusionary snowjob, that’s all!

#96 James- Chatham on 02.27.08 at 8:25 am

It’s “trivial”, and we see this as manna from heaven…big bro’s gonna let me keep some of my hard earned money tax free…yippee!!

By TS on 02.26.08 10:23 pm

I agree. And, Garth even though you made this sugestion a couple of years ago, bot Flaherty and yourself are out of touch, forgetting the reality that the average savings rate is negative, that is people are living off their savings rather than saving more.

A TFSA does nothing to address this. Its just another plan to try and reduce the taxes you pay. For those that can save, the TFSA is just another way of reducing taxes and depending on a persons situation, they can decide. For those who can’t save, it does nothing.

#97 Greg on 02.27.08 at 8:30 am

During the past several weeks, I have been noticing a shift of sentiments on this blog.

It is interesting to see the undecided and swing voters shifting their centre of gravity so to speak. Even more interesting is watching the once committed liberal supporters evolving from hopeful and anticipatory, to cautiously optimistic, to dubious then to declaring the withdrawal of their support.

I note how many are expressing interest in the Green Party. I wonder if the expression of these sentiments are having any measurable effect on the liberal party caucus and or their advisor’s? Personally, I doubt that it is, but I do wonder.

As one who enjoys rebuilding and refurbishing other people’s throw aways and perceived junk, to make it live another day and remain useful, I understand the analogy, “One man’s trash, is another man’s treasure”.

I also noticed that many of the stalwart supporters and defenders of the LPC seem to have either drifted away or simply became silently. Especially after the Afghanistan amendment.

#98 James- Chatham on 02.27.08 at 8:33 am

1. Are the Liberals now a Conservative rump, and,

2. why do up to 70 Liberal MPs refuse to follow Dion into an election, and,

3. will Dion need to be replaced as Liberal leader before any next election?

These three crucial questions must be answered before any Liberal like you demands another election and putting Canadians through an election they will not want before October 2009.

Thank you.

By Harry S on 02.26.08 8:30 pm

1. The rump. Which in NA. is called the Sirloin. Actual the New York Strip is the Sirloin (Sir Loin, was actually knighted as the King loved it so much!)
But I digress.

No the Conservatives are the rump, based on their management style.

2. Maybe because, unlike Mr. Harper, Mr. Dion acknowledges discent rather than squashing it. How many CPC MP’s disagree with Harper? We’ll never know.
They’re just like the followers in “Tommy”. Deaf, dumb and blind… Harper’s told them where to put the cork.

3. Do the Libs need a new leader? That’s their choice. But since you say they need one, I would say not. I guess you Cons. are worried about him because his style is unfamiliar to you and it scares the crap out of you. Which brings me back to who is the rump!

#99 Greg on 02.27.08 at 8:52 am

By C. B. Innes on 02.26.08 4:58 pm

Trust C.B. to find the Achilles heel.

The issue of a privatization of E.I. got me thinking about broader considerations.

I thought of Mr. Harper’s statement about how the parties that run this country understand the use of Force (in conjunction with Afghanistan apparently). I thought about the direct and indirect considerations of this statement. On the one hand, it could be seen as a masterful stroke of political genius as it seems to praise liberal co-operation and comprehension, but at the same time it effectively labels the LPC as being the same as the CPC. Ouch!

On the other hand, it could be put in context with a possible privatization effort with broad intent. Like the GST, the liberals were happy to benefit from the unpopular measure. Once installed in majority government, they are only marginally less dictatorial than a Conservative gov. So long term, it would be useful to the Libs as well. So why oppose it?

Talk about your erosion of rights by stealth.

Then let’s look at the recent comments made by Mr. Flaherty regarding E.I. and Ontario citizens. I posted the link in yesterdays blog. It seems Mr. Flaherty holds disdain for the average unemployed person. Even those from his home province. Again I am left to wonder. What’s his problem? E.I. as we all know is self funding and has a huge surplus which in turn makes the likes of our Federal representatives drool. What a trough!

#100 give me a break on 02.27.08 at 8:53 am

We may not have agreed with Chretien on a lot of matters but he sure knew how & when to call & win an election. Give the people of Canada the power to take this Dictorial government down ASAP.

Cheers

By Irene on 02.27.08 1:23 am

just two problems in this plan:
– no more divided Right.
– you’ve got Dion, not Cretien.

#101 Chris on 02.27.08 at 8:57 am

You have no principle. How can you possibly criticize Flaherty’s economic management when your people sat down and allowed it to pass. You cannot support and oppose at the same time. Grow some balls and take a stand. Liberals are the brunt of everyone’s jokes right now under Dion’s “leadership”

#102 Oscar on 02.27.08 at 9:13 am

So, Garth, this is the WRONG time for the Federal government to encourage Canadians to save after-tax dollars, allowing them to grow and be withdrawn tax-free? I see. So, we should wait until some undetermined time in the future. That is just silly. You suggest that it will be under-utilized now. Well, assuming that you are right, won’t it still be utilized by some? Won’t it still benefit some people who manage to set aside some money to grow, tax-free, for use in the future? This is not something to be used just as a retirement savings vehicle….what about a rainy day fund, a supplemental post-secondary education fund for kids, a supplemental child-care support fund for families planning kids sometime in the future? To say that this is the “wrong time” because you feel that some Canadians may not make use of this is just plain silly.

#103 Bill-Muskoka on 02.27.08 at 9:43 am

Maybe if this couple had saved some of their way above average income they would not have to worry, that is about 5 times our family income and we still manage to save a little!!

By rural on 02.27.08 7:47 am

Duh! My thoughts exactly. They represented the core problem of their group. Overpaid, under educated, mindless consumers, Then they want MORE!

Hey, I look at the entire bludget thing this way. We just SAVED $300 million by not having an election, or should it be called an erection?

With the so-called ‘balanced bludget’ we will be needing that extra money for sure.

Me, I am going to be ignoring most of this CRAP until something comes along worthy of my time. We, at least, are seeing the two major parties starting to compromise with each other. Could it be they will actually start earning their pay?

Hopefully they won’t compromise us too much?

Now that the erection is a limp issue what will some here talk about? LOL

Spring is coming, and I can hardly wait for its fresh air and gentle breezes.

#104 Kerry Busse on 02.27.08 at 9:51 am

We may not have agreed with Chretien on a lot of matters but he sure knew how & when to call & win an election. Give the people of Canada the power to take this Dictorial government down ASAP.

Cheers

By Irene on 02.27.08 1:23 am

So, are you saying the Libs do what is good for the party, not for Canadians? I thought the Cons had the lock on political games.
Kerry

#105 Realist on 02.27.08 at 11:16 am

Sue:
Come one, let’s try to handle things in a reasonably mature adult manner. As you claim to have lived so long, I’m sure you’ve learned that ranting and calling people names does not achieve anything. So, on the a few points:
1) At no point did I suggest that you should be not permitted to voice your opinion in this forum, or that your opinion was even less than mine. To the contrary my suggestions was that your ballot, and by default opinion, is of great use in the very important policy field of education reform.
2) I’m not actually a Harper Conservative. In fact I’ve actually refused to renew my CPC membership, and have asked for the party to take me off their phone list specifically because I disagree with the way Harper is choosing to govern.
3)You’re right, I don’t understand Dion. For that matter by the sounds of the overwhelming opinion on this Blog, or even the number of Liberal student activists I know, most Liberals have no idea what he is doing either. I think the not understanding Dion is less a function of being a “HarperCon” and more based on the basic understanding of the English language. Note: this is not some attack at Dion’s accent, I’m simply trying to state that Dion has an illustrious history of contradicting himself at every turn.

But then again, no point in letting the facts get in the way of a good rant…

#106 maggie on 02.27.08 at 11:30 am

I also noticed that many of the stalwart supporters and defenders of the LPC seem to have either drifted away or simply became silently.

By Greg on 02.27.08 8:30 am

Or maybe, as is also the case when the Conservative supporters on here don’t seem to be so vocal, we’re just busy with the other things of our lives. You think?

#107 Lisa on 02.27.08 at 11:45 am

Cancelling the eco-auto rebate shows this party doesn’t know what direction to travel, but is actually going in circles. Bring it in 2 years ago and cancel it at the end of 08.

I like the idea of the tax free savings account. It is about time a government learned that they shouldn’t suck and blow at the same time. I pay taxes on the money I make, fair enough. I pay tax on the money I spend, little less fair but good enough. I pay tax on the money I sock away? Not very fair at all. So now I can move my cash in 5K annual increments to a tax free location. Good idea and about time.

By Marc on 02.26.08 5:08 pm

Good idea for now Marc, but what about next year when they decide its not a good idea and slap a tax on it? They’ve pretty much reneged on every treaty and promise they’ve made since they came into power, so why should anyone trust this new scheme?. PMSH is a proven liar, and I’ll bet that anyone who invests in this new prgm will be sorry for it next year.

#108 SUE on 02.27.08 at 1:36 pm

Maybe if this couple had saved some of their way above average income they would not have to worry, that is about 5 times our family income and we still manage to save a little!!

By rural on 02.27.08 7:47 am

<>

AHHHH!!!!! True CONservative “Businessmen” views of the “Ingorant’ worker On the shop floor. now it couldn’t be that maybe these ‘uneducated” workers may have raised a family, put kids through college and paid Off a mortgage.No the Ungrateful bastards just want MORE.Right On Billy Boy. It doesn’t matter that Nowadays a Company CEO makes 400x what the HIGHEST Paid Worker on the Shop Floor Makes where as not so long ago the CEO made just 40x,but No Bill it’s those undereducated Overspending Comsumerism Mad F’ing Workers. Spoken Like a EXPat US Republican. Of course You would Blame the Worker that has to do the Shit Jobs and The Skilled jobs to Build your product cause like the True Republican business Man Bill all you care about is the Bottom Line and Your bulging Bank Account.Who the Hell are You to Judge these people ? it seems that very few blue Collar workers are members of this blog and after these F’ing Stupid Comments and Old “realist’ insults I guess I’m really Not In the “Class” of You “EDUCATED” Arseholes. My Mother had grade 2 and my Father grade 8 aand they managed to Raise 12 kids and were NEVER On Welfare and To you they are Considered “Uneducated” as if Any God Damn “EDUCATION” made anyone Smart and Instilled a Lick of Common Sense.What my parents lacked in “Schooling” they made up In Common Sense.Bill Gates was a HS Drop Out or was it College can’t Remember. It wasn’t “education’ that made Gates it was INNOVATION.Oh and My HS drop-out Millwright Hubby is a SMART Problem solver who Kept his Plant running a FULL TWO shifts Just by using his SKILLS when a Part had to be Shipped In.Maybe some people just don’t Like School and they have talents in other areas,but Stop insulting us because you took a different path.Oh and this Country was Built with the Help of alot of “DUMB Immirgrent” using nothing more than thier Common Sense.
It’s these type of views workers have always had to Put Up withfrom Owners and Shareholders who are really the Ones that want MORE and as Always we Blue Collar Workers are portrayed as the GREEDY ones,when all we expect is Our Fair Share if a Company is making HUGE Profits.Yeah maybe I don’t have enough “Class” to be commenting here for It’s Seems People are Now Judged by How Much F’ing “Education” they have. I’ll take alot of the “Undereducated” blue Collar Workers over some of the Arseholes on this blog.Shit maybe I’ll Moved out of Campbellville also for Garth lives here and Bill may be insulted to have my “UnderEducated” Arse living so Close to Garth.

#109 Realist on 02.27.08 at 1:57 pm

Umm Sue, me thinks Bill was just being sarcastic. No need to get in a tizzy.

#110 SUE on 02.27.08 at 2:35 pm

“Realist” I don’t think Bill needs You to run interference for him he seems to Have something you Lack an OPENED Mind.When and if Bill does reply it will be More Witty than “no need to get in a tizzy” with a good old Arse Kicking on the Side,but I’m a big girl who knows that if I Dish I also sometimes have to Eat It.You have no revelence ‘Realist’ as for Bill I do Respect most of his opinions and he doesn’t need a “Court Jester Speaking For the King” and that about sums up my impression of YOU and Bill.

#111 C. B. Innes on 02.27.08 at 2:38 pm

By Realist on 02.27.08 11:16 am,

You are making a really good point. One of the strengths of successful federal Liberal and Conservative leaders is their ability to say one thing and mean something quite different. Chretien was able to use his fractured English as an asset using it to obscure his message.

Dion’s problem is that he has not mastered the skill in English of appearing to say one thing but making it vague enough that it could mean something else.

#112 SUE on 02.27.08 at 2:45 pm

Ther seems to be a problem with posting comments,so i will try to repeat the reply to ‘Realist’.
i don’t think Bill needs you to run interferfence for Him. He has something You lack An OPENED mind. When and If Bill does reply I think he’ll be More witty than “No need to get in a tizzy” and probably a little arse kicking on the Side.BUT I’m a big girl who knows that if I Dish It sometimes I have to Eat It.’Realist’ you’re irrevelent to me for I don’t care for you opinions whereas I Respect most of Bill’s. Bill doesn’t need a “Court Jester Speaking for the KING” that about sums up MY impression of YOU and Bill.

#113 Realist on 02.27.08 at 2:53 pm

Come on Sue, I believe I’ve made a genuine effort to be both polite and respectful in our disagreements here. All I ask from you is the same. Name calling, generalizations about my character based on roughly 500 words of text, and general belligerence is not only uncalled for but also genuinely counterproductive towards the achievement of any ends.
Now may we please play like grown-ups?

#114 Greg on 02.27.08 at 3:53 pm

By maggie on 02.27.08 11:30 am

Might I suggest you go to the next blog topic, read the posts and then grapple with what I said again.

#115 C. B. Innes on 02.27.08 at 6:00 pm

The Liberals have virtually taken every single issue they could use as an opposition to the government in an election off the table by supporting this budget.

They have lost control of every issue from the independence of the Senate, to the Afghan War and now even the environment has been neutralized for the Liberals as an election issue by accepting the budget. All the major issues are off the table including management of the economy.

About the only thing that is left is Martin’s day care idea and a one issue platform is not much to fall back on.

#116 Ted R.H. ,Ont. on 02.27.08 at 8:18 pm

Garth: Your words on the budget are hollow, as you are going to let it pass.
Where is your credibility?

#117 Harry S on 02.28.08 at 9:27 am

WE NEED AN ELECTION NOW, ASAP, PRONTO, NEXT WEEK …. COME ON LIBERALS, VOTE DOWN THIS ILLEGITIMATE HARPER GOVERNMENT ..!!!