Oct. 24, 2020

We’re Number one In the world— in spending that is

I hate to say I told so.  From the moment Justin Trudeau ran for the leadership of Canada’s Liberal Party through to his election as Prime Minister I have been warning about this man and his spend-easy ways. On March 29, 2017 I said this:

“Trudeau said the budget would be balanced, with a $1 billion surplus, in 2019-20. Last week’s budget predicts the deficit in 2019-20 will be $20.4 billion, $18.7 billion deficit in 2020-21 and $15.8 billion in 2021-22. It gives no indication of when the budget will be balanced, if ever.’” 

Where are we now? Over $300 billion deficit, 15 times more! Oh yes, the dastardly Wuhan Virus came along . . . 

But the trend began before the virus, from promising a balanced budget to deficits every year. 

But make no mistake we have outdone them all –read what Professor Jack Mintz (the President’s Fellow, School of Public Policy, University of Calgary and chairs the Alberta Premier’s Economic Recovery Council) has to say, writing in the National Post and on the McDonald Laurier Institute Website :

“In government spending and deficits, we're now No. 1 in the world”

He goes on to say: “Unproductive public spending outstripping economic growth will be our real albatross threatening prosperity in years ahead.”

"The International Monetary Fund released its semi-annual Fiscal Monitor report last week. No surprise: it projects bigger deficits for all countries for 2020.

“What is surprising is that Canada will have the distinction of running the largest deficit among all countries – advanced, emerging and developing – at 19.9 per cent of GDP. 

This even “trumps” the United States, which has the second highest forecast deficit at 18.7 per cent. And it’s almost double the average deficit for Euro area countries (10.1 per cent of GDP).’

Is anyone anywhere in this country listening ? Right now as we speak, free-spending parties are holding the federal government to ransom. And to stay in power the government is complying!

This weak the government threatened an unwanted election if these parties did not defeat a bill/resolution that tried to get more documents on dishonesty in Government. 

So not only do we have irresponsible spending but a law-breaking Prime Minister who can exercise blatant power to prevent information on wrongdoing from being examined by Parliament. 

A fiscal deficit and worryingly an “honesty” deficit.

We have smugly looked at other countries blindly ignoring our own. More than 90 per cent of those I have spoken to in the last year about politics spoke of the U.S., ignoring our own country.

And if I did not raise Canada and its faults it would not have been raised even though we are less competitive than the U.S. says the World Economic Forum and the ease of doing business here is much more difficult than in the U.S. according to the World Bank. These are objective figures not slanted partisan numbers. This very day an election in British Columbia is most likely to see a left wing, free spending party elected with a majority. This party and its so called more conservative predecessor both bragging for years about balanced budgets as the debt each year continued to rise. 

How about this from Professor Mintz?

“Here’s another kicker. Spending by all levels of government in Canada is projected to hit 57.3 per cent of GDP in 2020. That’s more than at any time in our history, including both world wars. Despite the big U.S. deficit, Americans will be spending only 47.2 per cent of GDP, fully 10 points less than us. Canadian governments are projected to spend more than Sweden (53.3 per cent of GDP), Germany (53.9 per cent) and the EU in general (55.7 per cent), reversing a long-standing tradition in which our fiscal policies stood between Europe’s and our American neighbours’.

And we can’t use the resource economy argument to our favour when Australia and Norway are spending less than we are. 

Open-ended expensive programs like CERB are largely responsible, as Dr. Mintz points out, leading to: 

“Overall, so much federal money has been spent that on average Canadians have more personal income today than they did pre-COVID – even though average employment income has fallen dramatically. Doling out money may be a politician’s dream, but it will be a nightmare for our children and grandchildren when the bill comes due.”

I encourage everyone to read Dr. Mintz article and you can actually see the tables from International Monetary Fund online. Plug in International Monetary Fund Monitor 2020 —It’s is 124 page document —-scroll down to page 22–and there are the numbers. 

It is embarrassing.