2 min

Jim Flaherty’s broken deficit promises

Jim Flaherty delivered his fiscal update – reneging on the plans they put forward to pay off the deficit a year early as
was outlined in the election platform, not that it was a surprise. He also
promised to increase EI premiums by only half as much as he promised to – but now
he’s calling it a “cut,” which it most certainly is not. But hey, semantics and
framing devices are what make the news and shape perception, right? Of course,
not paying off the deficit when planned means all of those other electoral
promises for once the deficit was paid off – income splitting, all kinds of new
tax credits and the like – won’t be happening before we’re into another election.
But hey, I’m sure they’ll tout all of their progress when the time comes.

The government has announced new climate-change-adaptation program spending, but won’t commit to keeping up with Kyoto
goals.

Oh, look – the F-35s won’t be ready until
2018. Remember how we were supposed to start getting delivery in 2016 at “peak
production”? Yeah, that’s looking even less likely now. Remind me why we’re not
rethinking the whole thing again?

Not content to trample on an
established legal principle whereby Parliament does not interfere in the
courts, Conservative MP Dean Del Mastro is now threatening the CBC with
contempt of Parliament if it doesn’t turn over its access-to-information
documents.

That veteran on a hunger strike over
depleted uranium poisoning has ended his protest after the government
agreed to look into his situation and that of those in similar circumstances.

The government has rejected a Senate
proposal for two-tier pardon fees to make them more affordable for some, because “pardons are not a right.” So you
don’t let people get good jobs once they’ve paid their debt to society, so they
have less incentive not to offend again? Way to go on that fantastic policy!

Here’s a lengthy and curious tale about
some business that the chair of the committee for security and intelligence review got himself into.

And in NDP leadership news, Romeo Saganash
talks to the CBC about his work in negotiating between Cree in northern Quebec and the
provincial government, and how he hopes to apply those techniques to the rest
of the country. Paul Dewar, meanwhile, has a new policy for supporting artists
around income averaging and CPP and EI support to the self-employed and
freelancers.

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