Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Opportunity Knocks

The only knock I've had against Dalton McGuinty in the past is that he's been very risk-averse and has never really seemed to take full advantage of his time in power to bring about real change. He's run the province well, but if Dalton were a font...well, I have no clue what font he'd be, but he wouldn't be bold.

Tomorrow's budget will probably be the best opportunity he ever gets to put his stamp on the province and to leave a legacy. The word of the year is "stimulus", which means governments have been given a green light to spend to their hearts content, without worrying about balanced deficits or balanced budgets. So the money is there to do whatever he wants.

On top of that, with the PCs in leadership mode, there's no opposition leader to take him to task or to critique him. So there's likely to be little political fall-out.

He has the resources and political cover to be bold. I'll be very curious to see what he does with this opportunity.

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14 Comments:

  • What about the combined PST and GST.....I am a good Ontario Liberal , but this is bothering me-- very much so.

    By Anonymous Cari, at 11:06 PM  

  • thought you might have a post on the Iggy fundraiser.

    when Ed tried this, there was a loud outcry from the Liberals. Now its ok when Iggy does the same thing? sorry, I forgot, the Liberals make their own rules.

    I don't think it is ok to sell access to our elected officials. It is bad enough they are selling the main tickets for $500, but charging extra to get to sit up by the leader is not acceptable. No matter who is doing it.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 1:04 AM  

  • 1:04 AM Anonymous,

    And soliciting for donations because GritGirl is making videos is noble?

    Really, how are 500+ people going to really get up close to the leader?

    This is small time compared to the $10K/donor shindigs of less than 5 years ago.


    CalgaryGrit,

    I am very unhappy about this harmonization stuff.

    Like any Albertan, I shiver anytime I have to pay 8% PST.

    My response is, BUY IN PST-FREE ALBERTA. I need a high end motion camera, teleprompter, etc., so I am picking up the $10K+ in equipment from Vistek in Edmonton (my son is at the U. of A.) instead of Vistek in Mississauga or Toronto. I will save close to $1K. It pays for my son's flight home and some.

    This summer I will be purchasing another $500K worth of supplies, and guess where I am purchasing it and then bringing it to Ontario via containers, staff and family?

    And that is only the start. I am considering moving the official headquarters of all my companies to Alberta.

    Will harmonization of the tax affect the businessman? Nope. Most of us have already figured out how to legally work within the system.

    Harmonization of the tax will affect those who are always stuck with the burden of our tax system - the individuals who are working for someone else. And don't let anyone else tell you differently.

    By Blogger MississaugaPeter, at 2:18 AM  

  • Iggy looked really good signing over the 3 billion dollar slush fund to Harper today! What's money between friends?

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 2:50 AM  

  • It's entirely possible that you can get deals on some items (like high end camera gear) that are sold by national chains, just by eliminating 8% PST.

    But it has been my experience that the "Alberta Advantage" is a chimera, because the base price of almost everything is higher due to transportation costs, or lack of economies of scale.

    There also has been, until quite recently, an attitude on the part of some merchants that "everyone" has money, therefore it's appropriate to charge more. Oh well, that's how the market works I guess.

    Anyway, if you have to buy groceries here, or if you go out to eat at a restaurant, you WILL pay more than you would in say, Vancouver or Montreal or even Ottawa. I would submit that people buy groceries more frequently then they buy high-end camera equipment...

    And it has nothing to do with the tax, although I shudder to think what we would be paying for things if we DID have a provincial sales tax.

    By Blogger Party of One, at 6:43 AM  

  • 1. The Iggy fundraiser is fine. So long as there are donation limits, no one can give more than a grand a year, so you're not really buying access. Good on the party for actually netting half a million in a night if they pull it off.

    2. Yup, Libs looked bad backing down on the 3 billion "slush fund". I shudder to think of the reaction had Dion done that...

    3. I'm going to have to read over the harminization stuff closely, but it seems to me that harminization is generally a good idea. Some may pay more, some may pay less, but on the whole it should be beneficial.

    By Blogger calgarygrit, at 9:34 AM  

  • Last time I checked, there was a new opposition in Ontario.

    By Blogger Ian, at 10:59 AM  

  • It's nice to hear Liberal supporters who spent the last three years praising the GST as the best tax ever invented and scolding Harper for cutting it are getting nervous about McGuinty harmonizing the PST with it. Fair weather friends indeed.

    I especially enjoyed the comment about shivering "anytime I have to pay 8% PST". Apparently Ontario Liberals enjoy spending lots of money but not actually having to pay for it. It explains the $18 billion deficit McGuinty is going to stiff us with.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 12:26 PM  

  • 12:26 PM Anonymous,

    It's the mindset of growing up in PST-free Alberta. And while growing up, there was no GST either. Those were the days, those were the days.

    One relief moving out to Ontario was former Liberal, Premier Peterson's "NO PST on fast food under $4". All those years of confusing Muckey's drive thru order takers (really creating jobs) by splitting up orders so they are all under $4 will just be a fond memory (nolonger an experience) I will have to share with my grandchildren (if I ever have any).

    By Blogger MississaugaPeter, at 1:31 PM  

  • I don't like the combined GST and PST act they are bringing.

    I don't and never did like Dalton McGuinty.

    By Blogger mezba, at 1:55 PM  

  • "It's the mindset of growing up in PST-free Alberta. And while growing up, there was no GST either. Those were the days, those were the days."

    I don't doubt it. But the money for the spending spree does have to come from somewhere. Personally, I prefer paying consumption taxes than having the government yank the money off my paycheque, swipe it from my capital gains or some company that committed the sin of turning a profit.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 2:17 PM  

  • I agree - too risk-averse and without any spark of creativity towards challenges. To me, that's a pretty big knock, though. Not heinous or villainous, just - not good enough. Mediocre isn't a passing grade.

    Same goes for Harper. He's bold at politics but not at actual challenges.

    By Anonymous Jason Bo Green, at 2:27 PM  

  • It's amazing the number of half-wit liars there are out there.

    Harmonization is a TAX CUT.

    That's a fact.

    With all the silly exemptions McGuinty is making, it's an even bigger cut than a straight switch over.

    By Anonymous DR, at 6:26 PM  

  • DR, the half-wit is the person who says "it's an even bigger cut than a straight switch over." What? Straight switch over to what?

    Only a half-wit liar would claim that "Harmonization is a TAX cut" when the HST of 13% will be applied to the following items that in the past had 5% GST and no PST:

    * Gasoline
    * Home heating oil
    * Fast food under $4
    * Tobacco
    * Haircuts, pedicures
    * Real estate commissions
    * Gym memberships
    * Taxis, newspapers, magazines
    * Movie tickets, internet fees
    * Postage stamps

    There are a lot of very interesting tax cuts in Dalton's 2009 Ontario budget, but to say that the HST lowers consumption taxes is wrong. The overall budget may have a net positive result for most Ontario residents, but consumption taxes increased today.

    By Blogger MississaugaPeter, at 8:20 PM  

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