Monday, June 27, 2005

That Card, Monte

Hoo boy. Monte Solberg, in the Toronto Star, writes a hillarious criticism of the NDP budget, and the NDP's role in previous minority governments:
Thirty years have passed, and many Canadians will find it hard to remember the original Canadian production of That '70s Show. The cast was a Liberal-NDP coalition government that set an all-time record for fiscal recklessness. The show ran for only a couple of seasons — 1972-73 and 1974-75 — but wrecked the Canadian economy for the rest of the decade.
Oh my god! Really? That's horrible! I suddenly have the urge to vote for the Conservatives! Or the Bloc!

Oh. Wait. There was something else that happened between 1972 and 1975, if I remember correctly. Something about oil, actually:
The world oil shock of 1973 began in earnest on October 17, 1973, when Arab members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), in the midst of the Yom Kippur War, announced that they would no longer ship petroleum to nations that had supported Israel in its conflict with Egypt—that is, to the United States and its allies in Western Europe. At around the same time, OPEC-member states agreed to use their leverage over the world price-setting mechanism for oil to quadruple world oil prices.
Damn you, NDP! How could you betray us!

Actually, Monte's list of sins is kind of funny, if you know how to read it:
  • Between 1972-1975, spending on federal government programs increased by 50 per cent, from $18.8 billion to $28.2 billion.
  • The federal government increased taxes by 52 per cent; from $19.2 billion to $29.3 billion.
Hmm. So revenues increased slightly faster than spending. That would be... fiscally conservative, wouldn't it? Damn you, NDP! Why can't you be more like a Tory? (For reference, Mulroney was PM from 1984-1993, including the years '89-92 where the Canadian deficit grew dramatically.)
  • From 1972-1974, Canada's inflation rate more than doubled, from 5.2 per cent to 11.1 per cent.
See above, regarding oil embargo.
  • Canada's interest rates nearly doubled — prime rose from 6 per cent to 11 per cent.
Yes, and when the Liberals had a majority inflation (not to mention the deficit) increased even more. Not to mention Brian Mulroney's tenure, when catastrophically high interest rates nearly destroyed the Canadian economy. But if you live in Monte's world, it's all the NDP's fault anyway. Of course, Monte doesn't actually care about political (or mathematical) accuracy. It would be nice if we could take the Conservatives seriously, but when you base your argument on re-hashed arguments from The Economist and Tom D'Aquino, that's impossible.

1 comment:

wonderdog said...

Actually, I'm pretty sure that the Liberal-NDP coalition actually caused the oil crisis. Really. The coalition was post hoc, and the oil crisis was clearly propter hoc. So there you go.