The Consumptive Party has been pretty quick out of the starting gate with Erring O’Fool touting a set of campaign promises that makes Tinker Bell’s fairy dust seem inadequate.
One million jobs in one year, tax free Christmas, huge increases for health care and a balanced budget. In the first place, we don’t know if MacDonald’s and Amazon have that many openings for minimum wage jobs. A tax-free Christmas and a big increase in health care spending seem to fly in the face of the desire to balance the budget. If we don’t pay tax in December, we’re going to end up paying more later on. And what about the money that’s going to give a big boost to health care – if we’re balancing the budget, where’s that coming from? We might also wonder that, given that the pandemic has been an economic equivalent of fighting a war, should we expect a balanced budget so soon?
In the past, balancing the budget is a traditional battle cry of the Consumptive Party as it sells well with thrifty voters who think household budgets should be the model for government spending. The Consumptives use ‘balanced budget’ as a code word for big cuts. It’s all part of their belief in the trickle down theory of economics where government gives everything to the filthy rich with the idea that, at some point, they will unzip and shower the rest of us with a golden stream.
In times like these, a balanced budget comes in the form of scorch and burn tactics directed at social programs. There is a strong belief that fiscal pain is good for the land and will only affect the fiddling grasshoppers that plague Kanadoodle. Consumptive belief in balanced budgets goes hand in hand with their belief that a country reaches Nirvana when every activity is in the hands of private enterprise including health care, education and playground swings. Critics point to the pandemic as showing how effective private enterprise is when it comes to long-term care facilities but, when push comes to shove, both the Libelous and Consumptive parties say one thing and continue to support private, for profit long-term care.
Another point where both the Consumptives and Libelous Party are in agreement is the belief that childcare is a big selling point in this election. They both have promises to make child care affordable. In BC in 2019 the median childcare cost was between 780 and 900 per month depending on the age of the child. If we were to use an estimate of 800 for this year, 75% paid would leave you a bill of $200 (75% of 800 = $600). If costs were limited to $10 a day and you had childcare for 20 days, it would cost you $200. That sounds about the same – right? Time will tell. It’s just that every time the government starts paying a percentage of the cost of anything, the private sector considers it an opportunity to increase their profits at the expense of the taxpayer. They increase their prices so they get the government percentage and squeeze the consumer, who ends up paying a similar fee as they did before the percentage subsidy. Capping the cost by having a fixed daily price might prove a better deal in the long run, although these systems can result in fewer spaces if the fixed fee doesn’t keep pace with inflation. The Consumptives haven’t yet explained how they’ll balance the budget and pay for their version of this big-ticket item while the Libelous Party shrugs and says they’ll just print more money.
The Nearly Dead Party’s leader… the one with the photogenic beard, says they’ll pay for everything by taxing the filthy rich. This approach always appalls the Consumptives who believe that taxing the rich will only result in them keeping their zippers tightly closed and cut off the trickle they believe will otherwise rain down on the rest of us. Since the filthy rich have way more money to spend on elections than the average Kanadoodlian, this notion never seems to get traction in any case.
And what about the Greenies? Aside from warning us that we’ll roast long before we get to Hell if we don’t fix the planet mighty quick, we never find out much about the rest of their platform as it doesn’t fit into the once a week 3 second sound bite allotted to them by the media.
Ignore the promises and vote for a minority government.