Saturday, March 08, 2008

While we were sleeping

Did someone go and make the three opposition parties a Coalition Government?

I guess I missed that one.


* * * *
The National Post Editorial board proposes an interesting solution - Let the bill go through the Senate, and then slash as many pet Liberal programs as necessary to fund it (like tax credits for porn and gratuitous violence?). If anyone complains, Jim Flaherty can simply say, "It's not our fault. Dan McTeague made us do it."

That will also crystallize the reality that allowing this dysfunctional minority Parliament to continue is untenable.


* * * *
John Ivison's column contains some great information - Liberals hit the political jackpot. Lots of procedural nuances for political junkies. At the end he points out that, "None of this [concern about how it impacts the budget] will be of great concern to the Liberals. They can reflect back on a banner week, having stumbled on the most-sought after goal in Western political alchemy -- power without responsibility."

And thus, the LPC seems to have joined the NDP and the Bloc as a party that thinks it can act irresponsibly because it doesn't see itself as ever having to deal with real life in government.

One can only hope.

36 comments:

Anonymous said...

I'd be ok with that...CBC goes first!

Joanne (True Blue) said...

CBC goes first!

Great! Let's start a chopping list.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

How about removing charitable status for the David Suzuki foundation?

Cool Blue said...

This is exactly what I proposed yesterday on the BT forums.

It is a perfect excuse to cut some fat. If the Liberals complain we can point out that because of their actions we either have to cut or, face a deficit.

This plays exactly into the election theme that the CPC is developing which is that if Dion becomes PM, we're going to have massive deficits.

Alberta Girl said...

I still think SH has something up his sleeve on this one - he is MUCH too smart to have "allowed" this to slip by.....maybe this is how he can "justify" cutting some of the fat bureacrats from the teat.

Should be interesting.

By the way - Did anyone catch the headline that says one third of Canadians think SH is lying on the Cadman affair.....um - so turn it around and 2/3 believe him, but that doesn't put "doubt" in people's mind.

Roy Eappen said...

Abolish the SOW, big CBC cuts, sell off Canada Post,
Cut HRC budgets 85%. Time too cut the civil service by 20000 .

Ruth said...

I'm so sick of the headlines just trying to mislead. Most people just read a headline and don't read any further. Of course, that should read that 2/3 of the people believe the PM, but that wouldn't be as exciting for people to read.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

This is exactly what I proposed yesterday on the BT forums.

Maybe the Post editorial board was lurking there...

This plays exactly into the election theme that the CPC is developing which is that if Dion becomes PM, we're going to have massive deficits.

Interesting. Now does anyone know how Dion voted on this one?

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Did anyone catch the headline that says one third of Canadians think SH is lying on the Cadman affair.....um - so turn it around and 2/3 believe him, but that doesn't put "doubt" in people's mind.

Yeah, way to torque the headlines! No agenda there, boy. Right.

Anonymous said...

What was the Speakers rationale for allowing this bill?
There are tons of ideas out there, surely the Government cant be expected to be accountable for the budget if theres all kinds of these bills passed.
Its far beyond argueing the merits of this measure, it has to do with the proper functioning of Parliament.
If we now have a de facto opposition coalition, we have to give some thought to the damage that can be done.
-Lee-

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Lee, exactly. Check out the Ivison link that I've just added at the end of this post. It's really worth reading.

Anonymous said...

it's the opening Harper needs re: spending our hard-earned taxdollars on programs thought necessary by some lowly bureaucrat.

Instead of fighting the idea so much...as is being reported, both Harper and Flaherty need to do what they do best....make an end run around the Liberals.....and seal them in the bottom of the opposition barrel for a decade or so.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

...and seal them in the bottom of the opposition barrel for a decade or so.

Maybe that is actually the strategy. Interesting.

Which is why the Bill may have supposedly 'got by them' in Parliament. So then they express token objection. The Bill passes through the Senate. Harper goes to the GG citing the reason that Ivison pointed out: "The very definition of not being able to govern would be the forced enactment of the opposition's tax policy."

Slam dunk. Election.

Brilliant.

wilson said...

In the final tally, the cost will be $2 Billion.
That's one CBC plus the Senate + their perks, to pay for it.

Gayle said...

"This plays exactly into the election theme that the CPC is developing which is that if Dion becomes PM, we're going to have massive deficits."

Of the other theme - if Harper continues with his poor fiscal management we cannot fund the programs that are important to Canadians. So much for the social safety net!

"I still think SH has something up his sleeve on this one - he is MUCH too smart to have "allowed" this to slip by."

Believe what you want, but I beg to differ. I think he was a little preoccupied with how to spin Cadman and NAFTA/Brodie, and how to continue bashing the liberals, to notice.

Anonymous said...

I must be missing something.
How could the Government have prevented the passage of this bill?
=Lee-

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Lee, they probably couldn't have in the House of Commons, but Ivison refers to a couple of tactics they could take regarding the Senate:

Finance officials are now examining their options should this prove to be the case. The favourite reaction at the moment is wrapping a repeal of the McTeague bill into the budget implementation bill. The latter is a confidence bill and would force the Liberals to choose between the RESP legislation and an election.

Failing that, the government can rag the puck, as they did with another private member's bill they opposed in the last Parliament.

Anonymous said...

One third of Canadians don't believe Harper?
That's what, about 33%?
What is the current poll numbers for the liberal party?
About 33%?
Hmmmmmmmmm.

Cut the CBC's budget by $300 million, then remind everyone that their news coverage is biased because the CBC is defending their funding rather than reporting the news accurately.
Use some of the CPC money to run ads to that effect.

Gabby in QC said...

"Interesting. Now does anyone know how Dion voted on this one?"

http://www2.parl.gc.ca/HousePublications/Publication.aspx?Language=E&Mode=1&Parl=39&Ses=2&DocId=3330102#SOB-2356077
OR
http://tinyurl.com/2hc7kt

Dion did not vote.

Ruth said...

Half the people commenting on some of the blogs seem to think this RESP is something new. If they didn't have money to put into it before, where are they going to find the money now.
It is also of no value if your kids want to apprentice for a trade.
We were hearing about everyone living paycheque to paycheque, so I don't understand how this is now some great miracle to help students.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Dion did not vote.

Why am I not surprised? I think he forgot how.

Gabby in QC said...

"We were hearing about everyone living paycheque to paycheque, so I don't understand how this is now some great miracle to help students."



Great point, Ruth.


This is simply a ploy from the Liberals to try to deflect from the Liberals' well-known problems AND to downplay and obscure the budget measure of the TFSA, which was generally very well received.



Not only students, but everyone can benefit from that measure. 

Seniors who have to collapse their RRSPs and convert to an annuity or RIFF can continue saving in a TFSA with no tax consequences, if I understand the measure properly.



"I think he forgot how." and "a 'chopping' list"
Good ones, Joanne!



PS.: Although I confess I celebrate the fact I'm a woman every day ... Happy International Women's Day to all the women out there!

PPS: The verification letters are not showing, so posting a comment is not working well

Joanne (True Blue) said...

The verification letters are not showing, so posting a comment is not working well

Thanks, Gabby. I just took it off for now.

Blogger is having issues today. I'm having trouble publishing as well.

Joe said...

Except for the greedy gimmes out there most people will not much like the RESP offered in the libs bill. Most people with children will not be able to put aside enough money to save themselves any taxes.

However this policy best reminds us of what we most dislike about the libs.

They are trying to tell us where to spend our money not leaving it up to the individual choice. They are also playing the old divide and conquer routine that they have become so famous for. If they appeal the the well off with children then they can count on that block of voters. Then if they are seen to be giving billions to the natives the libs can count on that block of voters etc etc etc. Is it any wonder Canada became the laughing stock of the world under the libs leadership?

molarmauler said...

1/3 of Canadians think he is lying?
Awesome.
Because with the Libs at 25% and the NDP at 15% that makes 40% as a bare minimum for me to take it serious.

Gayle said...

"They are also playing the old divide and conquer routine that they have become so famous for."

Harper is the one who had two budgets with targetted tax cuts. You know, for those "hard working families with children".

What do you think $100/child/month is really meant to do? It does not help the poor since it is not enough to cover child care.

Alberta Girl said...

"What do you think $100/child/month is really meant to do? It does not help the poor since it is not enough to cover child care."

Soooo Gayle - I would assume then that these "poor" people will not be helped by the RESP either - mostly because the do not pay any tax to get tax benefits from

Besides - as Ruth mentioned - exactly WHAT is new about this program - do we not already have RESP's - that was rhetorical as I know we do because I started putting money in until I found that we needed that money elsewhere.

Ruth said...

I just have to peek at Garth's site everyday to see what lies he's spreading today.
Someone on there has a list of all the senators and they are telling everyone to write to them to pass this RESP bill.
It's sound like they think it is a marvelous new thing, like free education or something. Dumber than dumb!

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Craig Oliver was just on CTV saying that tomorrow on Question Period, he's going to have a guest that's switching from Conservative to Liberal.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Someone on there has a list of all the senators and they are telling everyone to write to them to pass this RESP bill.

Garth is hawkish for an election. I really hope we get one, because as Craig Oliver just said, the PM would have every right to go to the GG for an election in this type of situation.

Gayle said...

AG - I was responding to the comment that it is the liberals who target demographics, and pointing out that the conservatives do it too.

The new measure allows parents who contribute to RESP's to get a tax deduction, must like RRSP's. Until now, parents would not get taxed on RESP contributions, but they wold also not be able to get a tax deduction.

I think I heard that they are taxed when they are cashed in, and if that is the case I am not sure if they are taxed in the students' hands or in the parents.

Gayle said...

"...he's going to have a guest that's switching from Conservative to Liberal."

Did he say if was a sitting MP?

I thought it might be Mulroney, since he thanked the liberals for supporting the GST. :)

Möbius said...

I think I heard that they are taxed when they are cashed in, and if that is the case I am not sure if they are taxed in the students' hands or in the parents.

They're taxed in the student's hands. Normally that means no taxes paid on withdrawal, unless the kids are working at something much better than a retail job.

They also get a 20% federal grant, and whatever investment income they earn, effectively tax-free.

For some reason, not everyone who should do so invests in them, no matter how well they're advertised.

Kingston said...

Bill Casey is my bet on the guest tomorrow. He plans on running again and he is smart enough to know how hard it is to run as an independent. Oliver is factually correct because Bill is still conservative in everything but party right now.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Kingston, I bet you're right. No big loss there.

Anonymous said...

kingston...did you mean 'liberal' in everything but party?