What to put on the chopping block?
What to put on the chopping block?
This article is more than 6 years old

What to put on the chopping block?

Conservatives from the Quebec riding of Beauce have come up with a plan to gut social programs, and they want their party to get behind the idea at the policy convention. After the government balances its budget, set for 2015-2016, they want to freeze spending at $300 billion in today’s dollars through 2020-21. Let’s put […]

October 29, 2013

Conservatives from the Quebec riding of Beauce have come up with a plan to gut social programs, and they want their party to get behind the idea at the policy convention.

After the government balances its budget, set for 2015-2016, they want to freeze spending at $300 billion in today’s dollars through 2020-21.

Let’s put this radical idea in perspective. Freezing total federal government spending in nominal dollars wouldn’t allow spending to grow in line with inflation – let’s put it at 2% each year to be aligned with the inflation target of the Bank of Canada. The plan also fails to take into account population growth – about 1% per year. 

This means there would have to be additional spending cuts amounting to 3% per year. That’s $9-billion in cuts, year after year, for four years. This is roughly equivalent to eliminating the federal government support for medicare through the Canada Health Transfer. But because some spending would increase at a faster rate than zero, this would mean deep, deep cuts in other areas of federal spending. Which ones?

Photo: triviaqueen. Used under a Creative Commons BY-2.0 licence.

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Stephen Harper's evolving Senate talking points: the Monday edition
Stephen Harper's evolving Senate talking points: the Monday edition

Stephen Harper’s evolving Senate talking points: the Monday edition

Prime Minister Stephen Harper took to the airwaves Monday to try and get this pesky Senate story under control. He settled on appearing on Maritime Morning with Jodi Morgan, a friendly voice on the other end of the line. Morgan ran for the Canadian Alliance back in 2000, and went on to work for Harper.  […]

October 28, 2013

Prime Minister Stephen Harper took to the airwaves Monday to try and get this pesky Senate story under control.

He settled on appearing on Maritime Morning with Jodi Morgan, a friendly voice on the other end of the line. Morgan ran for the Canadian Alliance back in 2000, and went on to work for Harper. 

After getting the fluff questions about jobs, the economy, and trade out of the way – per the agreement…