Friday, March 04, 2016

Stuck In The Past


Tasha Kheiriddin is bitterly unhappy. She confesses over at ipolitics that she yearns for the good old days:

I never thought I’d say this, but I miss the Liberal party of the late 1990s. I miss Prime Minister Jean Chrétien telling APEC protestors to stick it in Vancouver. I miss Finance Minister Paul Martin balancing the books on the backs of the provinces, basically telling them to stick it too. I miss the House of Cards atmosphere that pervaded in party circles as Chrétien hung on to his leadership, frustrating Martin’s ambitions —which eventually folded over the sponsorship scandal.

For Kheiriddin, Justin Trudeau's Liberals are just beyond the pale:

 Now we know why everyone wanted to take a selfie with Trudeau at the G7 and Davos. Gone is the dour penny-pincher Stephen Harper, who lectured his fellow leaders on the virtues of frugality. Instead, Trudeau lifts a page from the dog-eared Keynesian playbook. Spend your way to prosperity, friends. And buy goodwill while you’re doing it.

Chretien and Martin made tough choices, writes Kheiriddin. Trudeau is nothing but sunny ways, as the storm clouds continue to build:

Someday, that money will have to be paid back. Someday, Canada’s debt-to-GDP ratio will start to rise. Someday, the federal government will have to cut services because it’s paying too much to cover its debts. For proof, Trudeau has only to look at Ontario, where the Liberal government has racked up the highest sub-national debt in the world and is chopping programs as a result.

True. But Ontario's economy is growing. Alberta's is not. And, yesterday, all of the premiers -- including Brad Wall -- agreed to put a price on carbon. We don't know how the agreement will finally be worked out.  But at least it's a step forward. And Conservatives, like Kheiriddin, want to go backwards.

They're stuck in the past.


Lorne said...

Tasha Kheiriddin's attitude seems to reflect that of the Conservative Party completely, Owen. Even while the party struggles with the best face to put on itself, it will never really change. Like Kheiriddin, its values are set in stone, and no deviation from it can be acceptable under any circumstances. While few would argue that long-term deficits are undesirable, to ignore present circumstances and to embrace failed ways of conducting government at this early juncture in Trudeau's government is an admission of the kind of adamantine inflexibility that renders it unworthy of public trust.

Owen Gray said...

Like the religious fundamentalists who form their base, Lorne, they believe there's only one way to interpret Scripture.

ron wilton said...

Tasha is better looking than Ezra.

Owen Gray said...

And she's a lawyer, too, ron. But that isn't saying much.

Pamela Mac Neil said...

Numbers don't lie Owen, but Tasha does. Her and the other reform/alliance/cons need to spin their financial failures as successes is getting very tiresome. Harpers frugality? Let's see now.In 2006/2007 inherited $13.8B from Martin, that Harper turned into a deficit of $5.8B within 2yrs.He continued on in deficit every year, including increasing the federal debt by $150B.Harper and his clueless Finance Minister Oliver, continually, bold faced lied about the countries finances and I see the Con party and Con journalists like Tasha are carrying on with those lies.Harpers lecturing his fellow leaders on the "virtues of frugality" was not well received at the G7. Most of those leaders had Harpers number and new he was taking credit for a successful fiscal policy created by Martin. They also thought him a political buffoon.It's this continued spin in presenting Harper as being a successful money manager that I find offensive.The truth doesn't matter to Tasha.

Owen Gray said...

It's a little like Donald Trump claiming he's been a successful businessman, Pam. He ignores all the products with the Trump name that belly flopped.

the salamander said...

.. I've never really understood partisanship .. i get that we decide who to vote for, or we can appreciate someone's perspective stance or policy etc. But the partisan aspect or odd loyalty seems bizarre to me. Maybe I missed out on the instructions re secret handshakes, weird winks or whatever triggers, seals the deal or gets them all warn n fuzzy about each other. I understand trust of course and respect. But when situational ethics seem the predominant characteristics of someone, my antenna buzz alarmingly. Glibness is another trait that catches my attention.. narcissism or a bullying boorish way are further loud warnings. I don't need drama in my life, and especially don't need contrived drama or related tantrums going off with no warning.

There seems a dearth of upstanding politicians these days, but then it must be hard to be upstanding.. or an exemplar, surrounded by a shocking number of self centred people. Who could flourish in the midst of the Harper environment?

I guess we'll see what happens with middle aged Mr Trudeau.. Mr Mulcair.. Ms May.. and all those orbiting around them. But I do wonder about the backroom managers, middlemen, meddlers.. the patrons and the plumbers.. the weasels and the wise men or women, the fund raisers and the robowanks.. the movers and shakers, the policy wonks and publicity managers.. and of course the fervent.. those who's eyes glow.. at belonging to that secret but public crowd of partisans

Somewhere in that mad matrix are the partisan Media.. perhaps the most troubling of all to me.. unable to see, or just unaware they've become professional public liars, apologists, meddlers.. in fact they are the ultimate mongrel pack, sniffing each other, barking, snapping and at times more of a public threat than anything else.. or just plain useless.

The Mound of Sound said...

Kedrihan is a Mike Harris Tory troll. Naturally she plays fast and loose with the facts in struggling to construct a non-laughable narrative. The lies begin as her mouth opens to announce that Trudeau inherited a balanced budget from Harper. She completely omits any reference to how the fiscally responsible Sideshow Steve Harper bloated Canada's national debt without generating any notable stimulus. This court jester also fails to grasp who Keynesian theory prescribes that governments use their money wisely, spending on infrastructure investment of the sort that will pay real revenue returns to the economy and the treasury in the long term. She's just another crass ideologue which is why I suspect iPolitics chose her as a voice of the "other side."

Owen Gray said...

The pundits on the Right increasingly sound like automatons, Mound. They all play the same pre-recorded message.

Owen Gray said...

The dog pack is an interesting metaphor, salamander. One only needs to add that, like Pavlov's dogs, they salivate on cue.