The "Canada Economic Action Plan" is a Sham

Canada economic action plan

Article by Garrett Will
God damn it, my fellow Canadians, god freaking damn it. You've essentially told Stephen Harper, the third time so far in 2011, "Hey! Can you continue running our country in the ground while you rake in cash for yourselves and your corporate buddies and spend more than any party has in the past couple of decades with false promises of ‘economic growth'?" I'm losing not only my faith, but my patience in those of you who continue some misguided tradition of voting for the Progressive - Conservative Party. With these mishaps piling up on our country because you support this abysmal government with your completely uninformed votes, I'm finding it harder to refrain from becoming an outright cynical bastard.

For the past couple of years, $18 billion has been spent by the bully-boys in Parliament on advertising for a so-called "Canada Economic Action Plan", which surmises that there's growth in the Canadian economy. Other things being sold to the more brainless of us include: Loans & Reward programs for current or future students, increasing spending on competitive markets with room for beneficial growth, and other programs that are vaguely suggested to produce economic growth and balancing. From McLean's Magazine, on the spending budget set just for those fancy ads that explain no real facts:

"In 2010-11, the last year for which final figures are available, $65.4 million in ad spending was approved on a quarterly basis, but $83.3 million was ultimately spent, according to the government's annual report on advertising. Asked to explain how $17.9 million more was spent that year than initially approved, a Treasury Board official said departments are allowed to dip into their general budgets to top up ad spending."


"That final figure of $83.3 million for 2010-11 was nearly 20 per cent higher than the $69.8 million the former Liberal government spent in 2003-04. (Spending was much lower in 2004-05 and 2005-06, the last two years of Liberal rule, but that was largely because much federal advertising was suspended during those years' election campaigns, as required by government policy.)" *

The Liberal party before Harper's cabinet began their reign of terror was not without scrutiny and even scandal, but they produced an economic surplus after all (of $16 billion). They were reported to be committing partisan "wrongdoing" in the early 00's, and thus the advertising budget was suspended for up to 2 years. Yet when the Tories spend several times more than the Liberals ever did, few scrutinize the PC party for their practices. And you'll still read uninformed idiots and Progressive-Conservative drones belly-aching about a "liberal" media muddying the issues and nobody discussing the Liberal party. These same buffoons are unable to think in the present, so I say to them, "wake up and smell the ashes."

Yet what really has come of this action plan? Has the federal government run by these Tories actually done what they claim to have done so far? It's been two years of inaction. In fact, Canada has been on a decline; as of yesterday (November 23, 2012) at 11:10 AM, the national debt reached $600 billion. That's not a figure to be proud of at all. The only provinces making gains are the Prairie Provinces, especially Saskatchewan. The East Coast, which I begrudgingly call home, is suffering economic milestones (despite some contradictory statements by local media affirming that "we are growing!"), and even social ones. The province I live in right now has a majority Conservative constituency, while the Conservative government here spends more but produces even less than the previous party (Liberal). Chaos is being sown in this province and the idiots running the show are unable to do a thing to stop it, and I am of the belief that it is due to apathy. Few citizens here, as "happy" as they are said to be, hold the government's feet to the fire here.

Then you can take a look at Nunavut, which still has the most frightening prices for goods and services (though any ignorant observer would bring up the minimum wage there being the highest, it only amounts to a huge loss for the citizens of that province). I mean, look at the reported price of a head of cabbage: it's as high as $28 for a single one! Quebec is being given the shaft mostly thanks to the Tories and their politics, being maligned as a "Liberal-Friendly" province and belittled over and over again. British Columbia (my home province) still has so much untapped potential yet all the wrong moves are being proposed (such as the pipeline through the Northwest region that are so laughably designed that Enbridge, the company responsible for this proposed project admitted to a disaster being inevitable to follow). Few people care about Manitoba to this day, and Newfoundland and Labrador still hasn't found a contingency plan due to having essentially lost their only industry in fishing. Nova Scotia is one of few provinces in the country trying to improve its economy (such as allotting their budgets to attracting engineers, working alongside of some promising employers), but at the same time, the Federal government hardly does its part in aiding any of their measures to recover their economy.

Student loans aren't being changed at all and in the mean-time, tuition rates and other post-secondary costs continue to rise. Interest rates also aren't changing. We're still seeing doctors leaving the country or bouncing back and forth amongst the inter-provincial competitive markets. There's no boosts to apprenticeship programs manifesting anywhere. What more is there to follow as these misleading advertisements continue to pound peoples' heads that "the economy is growing again!" while no one is seeing any improvement anywhere?

But to this day, uninformed voters somehow have the confidence to vote for the Tories, three times in a row now. We have a country-wide problem that is cynical voters who vote with anything but their conscience and integrity. Many people follow a traditional voting behavior. Many more yet don't know anything about candidates beyond what they see on TV or read in news publications, both of which often provides only a fraction of the whole story, or outright spin their results (surely the censorship efforts being carried out by the Tories is partially to blame for this, specifically on what the Tories do on Parliament Hill). Their practices are hardly questioned by a sadly low number of individuals, and look at the consequences of that.

This action plan is all talk, and no action. It's time my fellow Canadians wake up and give the PC party a proverbial smacking for their inability to improve the country, while at the same time dwindling her resources just to line their wallets and to make their corporate friends happy (while taking what they can from the country, destroying it in the process). For those who still wish to give them the freedom to screw us up even more next election, wake the hell up and quit bringing all of us down with your terrible choices. We are suffering because of you, and I hope you feel firsthand the pain that this Federal Government is putting us all through; after all, you asked for it.

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