Budget projections are no longer worth worrying about - Macleans.ca

Budget projections are no longer worth worrying about


Whatever Tuesday’s economic update said, the Prime Minister says he still expects the budget to be balanced before the 2015 election.

“It remains the government’s plan, intention, to balance the budget prior to the next federal election,” he said at a press conference in Quebec City.

Scott Clark and Peter DeVries say the economic update was “lacking in transparency, accountability, and a realistic assessment of economic and fiscal prospects and risks.”


Budget projections are no longer worth worrying about

  1. from http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/article/1288966–prime-minister-stephen-harper-hopes-to-balance-books-before-next-election
    In the 2011 campaign, Harper pledged to bring in several popular tax savings measures for individuals, including a doubling to $10,000 a year of tax-free savings account limits, income-splitting for young families and a doubling of the children’s fitness tax credit.

    But he said on the campaign trail that the tax breaks would be held off until the Conservative government could eliminate the annual budget deficit —something Harper said at the time could be accomplished by early 2015. On Tuesday, however, Finance Minister Jim Flaherty said in his annual fall economic report that Ottawa’s books won’t be balanced until early 2017. That means
    Canadians might have to wait an extra two years for the promised personal tax cuts. It also meant the tax breaks wouldn’t emerge until after the next federal election.

    Harper & the cons will want to dangle the promises he made to try to get votes in 2015.

    • He’ll increase them, add new ones – maybe we’ll be promised huge tv’s for our votes.

    • Yes, and whip the ball away again from us Charlie Browns if it becomes necessary. “Oh dear, silly old duffer jumbo Jim forgot to add another dozen zeros to the defcit…sorry, we’ll have to take a rain check…again.”

      I enjoyed it more when PM was running surpluses inexcess of predictions.

    • The Liberals and NDP should run on eliminating Harper’s useless boutique tax cuts that do absolutely nothing for the economy. According to his 2009 budget, Harper has cut taxes by $44.4B/yr. It’s no wonder he turned a $14B surplus to a $30B structural deficit.

      This is a neo-con “starve the beast” scam that Stephen Gordon blogged about (ironically in favor of): 1) recklessly cut taxes; 2) manufacture a budget crisis; 3) justify cuts to public services and benefits; 4) go back to step 1.

      Tax credits for putting kids in sports only helps families who can already afford it. The TFSA is nothing but a tax haven for the rich (most workers contribute a fraction of the RRSP limit which offers better tax savings.) Income splitting is a social con scheme that favors families with stay-at-home mothers over couples that both work. Economists hated Harper’s GST tax cuts. Corporate tax cuts have utterly failed to boost productivity or create jobs.

      We need to restructure this mess of a tax system so taxpayers get a bigger bang for their buck.

  2. Yes, Harper plans on balancing the budget the neo-con way: by cooking the books. When Flaherty was finance minister in ON, he said a $5.6B deficit was a balanced budget.

    In the spring of 2013, Kevin Page’s term as Budget Officer comes to an end. After that Harper can do whatever he wants without the Budget Office calling him on his fiscal schemes and scams.

    The only way Canadians will know what’s really going on is when we get rid of this bunch of con men. (Let’s pray we don’t get fooled again in 2015 — or at least the 40% of voters that determine our country’s fate in our bizarre interpretation of democracy…)