As seen on TV

One thing not being promoted in those “Economic Action Plan” ads: the Harper government’s inability to stay within its advertising budget.

In 2010-11, the last full year for which final accounting is available, the Harper cabinet approved $65.4 million in spending, but the government ran up an advertising bill of $83.3 million. A year earlier, at the height of the economic crisis and during an influenza pandemic, the government approved $85.3 million in advertising but spent $136.3 million.

In fact, in every single year since the Conservatives took office, the government has exceeded its posted advertising budget by at least 25 per cent — the smallest overshoot being the extra $16.5 million Ottawa spent in 2008-09. That was also the year the Harper government posted its lowest overall ad spending to date, $79.5 million.




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As seen on TV

  1. “……..Conservatives are under fire for their current, gauzy “economic action plan” media blitz, part of a $16-million campaign that is saturating Canadian airwaves this autumn……”

    “gauzy” ?

    Are we to understand the media blitz to be ‘thin and light’ or ‘transparent’? Or perhaps both?
    I should think any Government plan which is ‘thin, light and transparent’ would be welcomed by taxpayers?

    • I’d have thought that a self-appointed grammar troll would be familiar with a word like gauzy:

      ” : marked by vagueness, elusiveness, or fuzziness (his gauzy memory of the events) (a gauzy melody)

      –Merriam-Webster

  2. TorStar ~ Corporate Welfare Flourishes In Lean Times:

    For five years, Mark Milke, a senior fellow at the Fraser Institute, has been churning out highly critical reports on “corporate welfare.”

    His latest report, released this week, focuses on a single federal department: Industry Canada. Between 1982 and 2012, it spent $13.7 billion on grants and loans to business. The vast majority of these loans were not repaid. A mere 0.1 per cent of the interest owed on these loans was ever collected.

    So who gains from his long-entrenched practice? The big winners, obviously, are the recipients of government subsidies. But there are other beneficiaries: vote-seeking politicians who want to look like they’re “doing something” for the economy and lobbyists who make a bundle vying for a share of the spoils for their corporate clients.

    Who loses? Taxpayers top Milke’s list; it’s their money that is being doled out. Other losers include companies trying to compete without subsidies, innovators trying to carve out a niche in a skewed market and consumers who pay inflated prices.
    http://www.thestar.com/opinion/editorialopinion/article/1256494–corporate-welfare-flourishes-in-lean-times

    • The real winner?
      Mr. Mark Milke, who gets paid to constantly remind you that when it is snowing, snow will be observed.
      The real losers?
      Those who, with masochistic fervour, insist on ‘reading’ the dross of Mr. Milke and his ilk and expect enlightenment. Then again, some read these agents provocateurs for the sheer pleasure of observing how these ‘writers’ use language to manipulate the deeply stupid.

      • So I take it you are in favour of the Dennis Moore approach to governing?

        “Dennis Moore, Dennis Moore

        Riding through the land

        Dennis Moore, Dennis Moore

        Without a merry band

        He steals from the poor

        And gives to the rich

        Stupid bitch”

        (Monty Python)

  3. Orwell ~ Political language — and with variations this is true of all political parties, from Conservatives to Anarchists — is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind.

    • “…….to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind……”

      You’ve never been to Delhi, India I reckon. The pure wind is quite solid there.
      You know Mr. Orwell was shot in the throat during the Spanish Civil War, but did not have the decency to die, right?

  4. “You have to catapult the propaganda…”

    – George W. Bush

    • “How fortunate it is for Governments that the people do not think”

      –Adolf Hitler, and every other leader before, since and forever more.

      • Sounds like you are quoting with approval – esp. in light of your other comments on here…

  5. I always find it notable how in articles like these we never find the wisdom of folks like Francis, Andrew, Rick, Orson, or basically the rest of the Maclean’s CPC defense league.

  6. I have a technical question about this. If I’m a Minister, and I sign off on a thing that says we will spend 8 million dollars, and the bill comes in at 10 million dollars, shouldn’t the other 2 million “unauthorized” expenditures be coming out of someone’s pocket, as it would if they just stole it outright? How is what the Minister signed so completely disregarded that the whole paper should have a “NOT” written across it?

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