Saturday, September 5, 2009

Follow the Money

1. David Ebner has written an excellent piece in today's ROB about the BC economy. The story is very detailed and worthy of a good, slow read. But the highlights are relatively simple. We have depended on real estate and consumer spending, while ignoring at our peril, exports. Our trade deficits are enormous.

What does this say to you about any real sense of planning and foresight and vision Gordon Campbell may have had for our economy?

What, if anything, have they been doing, besides riding the crests of various illusionary waves, about stimulating and encouraging productivity and exports of finished goods?

2. There was a small but telling story in the news today:

Ottawa spent $1.5-million on empty rooms at summit

More than half of hotel budget was spent on rooms that remained empty

Read the story and then ponder how this is but a microchasm (no, you spelling freaks, that is not a typo) of all governments all the time everywhere.

Multiply that million and a half by the days of the week and the months of the year and you will begin to get a glimpse into how your tax dollars are misspent with dedicated regularity.

If you have never gone to Victoria or Ottawa for even a day, you cannot rightly call yourself an informed citizen.

You must wander the halls and talk to the folks who "work" there - that is, between team meetings and lunch and coffee breaks and cycling. You have to add up all the copy machines and shredders and telephones and all the relocations and leather couches.


Anonymous said...

To keep in power, government must pay off its supporters.

1) The BC Liberals use real-estate and consumer spending as a camouflage for kickbacks to business owners.

Example #1: The Gateway highways project is being done, not to improve traffic, but to funnel money into the pockets of the Road Builders Association, while at the same time providing infrastructure to the Truckers Association free of charge.

Example #2: RAV and SkyTrain are built to inflate property values through densification, not to move people. Simple trick, when a metro line is built one applies to the city to have one's property rezoned to higher densities, this of course increases the value of the land. Just visit the Lands Registry office to see who will benefit from the RAV Line.

Example #3: By renting empty rooms in hotels/motel is an old dodge as it means pure profit for the owners.

Everything is all quite legal as government thinks the taxpayers are suckers and rubes just waiting to be fleeced!

Evil Eye

Anonymous said...

And here we have transclunk telling taxpayers that they will have to pay more taxes just to maintain the service levels. I have said all along we pay enough taxes already. The money that translink needs is there. It's just that the fed and prov gov't refuse to take responsibility for providing infrastructure...what the hell good are they then?!?!

Chris M said...

Oh I have gone to Victoria and Ottawa.
I got to watch the children in session and the huge group that gets to do their dirty work.
That was back in 1976 and it has grown even worse since.
I remember sitting in a session in Ottawa thinking that kids on the elementary playground couldn't have acted as childish as these people we elect to run the country. (or maybe I should say run the country down)

Jeff Taylor said...

Speaking of dumb Gov't waste... a transit system without a secure, gated entrance ? The Canada Line, built well after the Expo Line and the numerous studies telling Gov't that people ride for free - often enough - YET the new Canada line is STILL on the honour system ! Now TransLink (which is really just another arm of Gov't) wants more tax money AND another fare increase on the people that actually PAY to ride the various Skytrain lines. What's wrong with this picture ?? Speaking of Gov't waste, policy, and taxation, while giving out crack pipes and needles, I guess it only makes sense to Gov't to give out free Skytrain rides while they're at it.