Sunday, September 13, 2015

Canadian Election: A Dull Droning Sound Across the Frozen North

It's hard to pay attention to a Canadian general election while, simultaneously, Europe submits to an Islamic invasion with the full backing of its ZioNazi, New-World-Ordure masters, Merkel, Cameroon, Tusk, etc.; the UK Labour Party exchanges one ugly but quite likable, left-wing Jewish leader, Ed Milliband, for an even uglier and much less likeable, ultra left-wing, Jewish leader, Jeremy Corbyn; Donald Trump makes a mockery of the astonishingly uncharismatic representatives of oil, Israel, big pharma, Lockheed Martin, the incarceration, gaming, porn and movie industries, Wall Street and the big banks, who are contending for the Republican Party Presidential nomination; and Hillary Clinton, the leading Democratic contender for the position of the most powerful man in the world, undergoes a slow-mo, Fukushima-style melt-down.

Still a Canadian election must mean something, so here's out assessment of the options. Stephen Harper, who calls any critic of Israel an anti-Semite, thereby making anti-Semite a term of honor, and who wants Canadian forces sent to fight and die in any war for American empire and Israel, is running for a third term as prime minister, after botching his first two.

Specifically, Harper botched his main task, to ensure the construction of pipelines to carry tar sands oil to coastal terminals by disregarding First Nations land title, now confirmed by the Supreme Court of Canada, and by gutting environmental legislation, thereby arousing near universal public opposition to all pipelines anywhere. In addition, Harper's Borg-like, control-freak personality is finally apparent to all and sundry and, as a result of the trial of former Conservative Party shill, Senator Mike Duffy, it is also now evident that not only Harper's aids, but almost certainly Harper himself, have lied relentlessly to cover up a petty scandal that might have disturbed one or two of the dimmer members of the Tory party voting "base." And then the Canadian economy, under Harper's astute leadership, fell into recession just as the election was called.

Realistically, therefore, the alternatives for Canadians, are the likable and fairly dim-witted Justin Trudeau, who seems to sensibly take advice from the real politicians in the Liberal Party back rooms, and the high IQ, Thomas Mulcair, a seedy-looking, bearded ex-liberal who recently sought employment as an aid to Stephen Harper, but who opted instead to lead the supposedly left-wing New Democratic Party of Canada.

By way of policy, Mulcair's big deal is to create a million fifteen-dollar-a-day daycare places for the children of working mothers, a program that would require a gigantic bureaucracy to administer effectively and would cost at least a billion a month indefinitely. The idea is to help poor working mothers. But what about poor unworking mothers who stay home and look after their own children instead of getting someone else to do it for them, while someone else again pays for it. Well screw them, obviously.

Trudeau's idea for pissing away public money is rather more benign, consisting in a plan for a three-year, ten-billion-dollar-a-year infrastructure program to kickstart the recession-bound Canadian economy. As someone described a similar Liberal Party scheme of an earlier time, it is like trying to start the engines of Boeing 747 with a couple of flashlight batteries. But the feebleness of the scheme is in fact part of its attraction: the cost, which has been fixed in advance is, in the scope of a two trillion dollar economy, quite limited. Ideally, the money would be allocated to the municipalities across the nation on a per capita basis. That way, at least a few pot holes would be filled. More likely though, the cash will be unevenly distributed according to political considerations and will mainly reach the pockets of Liberal-friendly contractors for the construction of unnecessary sports stadiums and the like. Still, it will require little bureaucracy to administer and it has a best-by date.

On policy, therefore, Trudeau looks the better bet.

But to be fair, we should mention the Green Party. Their big thing is a carbon tax, which is not a bad idea. At least it might end the tiresome debate on what to do about fossil fuels and climate change, since a carbon tax minimizes carbon emissions in the most economically efficient way.

Unfortunately, the Greens spoiled their plan by saying that they would distribute revenue raised by the carbon tax among the poor, which is inane. If you want to help the poor with taxpayer's money, OK, but do it out of general revenue on a scale that is judged appropriate, don't link it to some particular source of revenue which may or may not be of the appropriate amount.

A carbon tax should go into general revenue and be made revenue neutral by a commensurate reduction in other taxes, consistent with the principle of taxing what we don't want while reducing or eliminating taxes on what we do want: income, for example.

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