In my Jr. High School one of our student council presidents was elected with one simple promise; cream soda in the water fountains!
This promise coupled with the candidate’s popularity and charisma landed him the job!
I could have sworn I was back in Grade 9 sitting in the Gilbert Patterson gym at the All Candidates Forum in Invermere. Our incumbent MLA, Norm Macdonald, was as smooth as ever and came across quite polished and charismatic; quite convincing indeed as long as you didn’t pay too much attention to what he was saying.
Macdonald was quick to point out that we are deep in debt – pointing the finger of blame solely at the BC Liberals despite the global economic meltdown and $1.7 billion that was returned to the federal government following the abolishment of the HST which the NDP lead the charge on for their own political gain.
Macdonald went on to promise massive spending increases, 18 specific occasions during the evening! Nothing was left out; education, healthcare, seniors, forestry, etc, etc, etc! Money is NO object seemed to be the order of the evening, much to the delight of about half of those in attendance whilst the other half sat bewildered wondering where the money was coming from.
Perhaps the money would come from promoting new business ventures in our province? Not so! On five separate occasions Macdonald vowed that his party would not support projects that will contribute over a TRILLION dollars to the B.C. economy and will literally create over 20,000 jobs…once again with the same reaction from the not so like-minded sides of the room.
Who will pay for this increase in spending and decrease in contribution to our economy? The answer was simple – it would come from those of you who run your own businesses, offer products and services at reasonable prices and provide jobs. An increase in taxes on business owners and successful British Columbians were the only increases that Macdonald even mentioned to offset his party’s proposed spending spree!
On the flip side of this – Mr. Clovechok (Doug Clovechok, running for the BC Liberals) stayed clear of plying the room with cream soda! He was realistic about spending and expectations in our current financial climate. Instead of wooing the room with flowery platitudes that evoked enthusiastic response he vowed that he and his party would support an increase in economic activity and funding for training for a work force that would provide jobs for families, increase our quality of living and would provide the funds necessary to maintain the high quality of education, healthcare, infrastructure and delivery of government services that we deserve. Hope for a bright future and a sensible way to pay for it…simple!
Don’t be fooled by hollow promises! The recently departed Margaret Thatcher put it best “Socialist governments traditionally do make a financial mess. They [socialists] always run out of other people’s money.” I’d say she is spot on here!