The Department of National Defense is one of the departments slated for cuts as Harper searches for $4 billion in savings. However, as 2,100 employees are packing their stuff and moving out of their offices, renovations have been slotted as new spending. These renovations, at a cost of $379,000 tax payer dollars, can be found in the deputy defense minister’s office.
The Conservatives like to claim that they shrink government size and spending. Like with Progressive Conservative Prime Minister Brian Mulroney, spending soared and Canada crashed. Mulroney introduced the GST, but that was not enough to clean his mess. In the 1990s, the Liberals under Jean Chretien took the unpopular decision to make cuts and the way they did it turned out to be widely successful as it gave the Liberal Party 13 years of uninterrupted power. Now, the Conservatives are left with no choice but to try it for themselves – for the first time.
In a previous post, I analyzed the main talking points of the Conservatives and found that a basic logic behind their proposed cuts in spending increases for provincial healthcare transfers made sense. However, while the logic behind the plan was sound, the plan itself wasn’t. The lack of leadership and the misguided neglect of the system will lead to bigger problems in the future – at least, this is what the Parliamentary Budget Watchdog says.
Sometimes you have to wonder where the Conservatives find the money to afford their new initiatives while they preach austerity. The Conservatives are now making a Religious Freedom Office within Foreign Affairs at the expense of tax payers.
In the 1990s and up to 2004, Harper championed on being the small government, low tax advocate, among other more controversial stances. However, if we compare these positions to his current day actions, it appears that all of his past opposition was worth absolutely nothing.
As if the House of Commons and senate wasn’t enough, the Prime Minister’s Office is the biggest in history. This comes as the Canadian economy is crawling and austerity is coming to find $4 billion in savings. Harper called for small government back in the 90s and in 2004, however, that Harper is gone. In the first 5 years of Harper’s mandate since 2006, bureaucracy has grown 13%, contradicting these small government principles.
As a society and as a community, you would expect that your contribution through taxes would be allocated wisely and as government being a means of allocating resources, you would think that this contribution would translate into some kind of benefit for us all. Well, that isn’t always the case, let’s take a look at the Canada School of Public Service, a department that should be one of the many on the chopping block as it doesn’t benefit anyone except the limited few who get first class trips on the expenses of taxpayers.
The Harper Government is quietly looking into a $3.7 billion purchase of new search-and-rescue planes. When the idea was pitched 6 years ago by the Conservatives, the cost was $3.1 billion, $600 million less than now. The project was put into a bureaucratic limbo a long time ago when Paul Martin first approved it and it never got done.
When you think of healthcare funding, you will likely think that the money we spend goes directly to healthcare. Unfortunately, it doesn’t. Instead, the money goes to hospital administrators and CEOs who have a tendency of treating themselves well and when cuts come along, they are never the first to get the front end. As the NDP scream that healthcare lacks funding, it is becoming more and more evident that healthcare is properly funded, but mismanaged, yet another strike against a political party that is already well known for being unrealistic.