'Anybody can do that' - Macleans.ca

‘Anybody can do that’


Jim Flaherty tries to explain why Kevin Page is wrong to say that tax hikes or spending cuts are going to be necessary to get the country back out of deficit.

“He’s wrong,” Flaherty told journalists in a conference call from a G8 finance ministers’ meeting in Lecce, Italy. “Because he says growth rates likely will be slower than I had predicted. Now, if you make an assumption with respect to lower growth rates, then you get the results that he postulates. But anybody can do that.”


‘Anybody can do that’

  1. Oh well, if you predicted something different, than yeah, sure, you bet Jim.

  2. I'm guessing that the last thing the Conservative brain trust wants MPs to be talking about is economics…they've kinda bunged that portfolio up big time and have strayed so far from their core message that it's probably not the best idea to remind the electorate of it.

  3. Well given that Page's forecasts for the last quarter were significantly off the actual numbers Flaherty may have a point.

  4. How were Flaherty's? I suspect his might have been even more significantly off the actual numbers.

  5. So now we're supposed to believe Flaherty's forecast? It seems to me that Paige has been right since the fall. He predicted the recession and the deficits while Flaherty was insisting we'd have surplusses as far as the eye could see.

  6. It depends how "conservative" you want your prediction to be. :)

  7. Is Flaherty really that dense? What kind of argument is that? We get different outputs because we use different inputs? Isn't that the whole issue, whose numbers should we be relying upon? I wish someone had asked the obvious follow up question, "Mr. Flaherty, seeing as how every one of your predictions in the last year has vastly understated the strength of the economy, the force of the downturn, and the size of the deficit, and Mr. Page's predictions have been much more accurate, what reason would any Canadian have to discount Mr. Page's predictions this time and trust in yours?" I'd have loved to see what inane nonsense he would have spewed out to answer that one.

    • Apologies, meant to say "weakness" instead of "strength."

      • Paging Dr. Freud.

  8. I think Flaherty was trying to outdo Chretien's "A proof is a proof. What kind of a proof? It's a proof. A proof is a proof. And when you have a good proof, it's because it's proven."

  9. That little nugget offered to us by our own little leprechaun is Lesson #1 on How to Severely Underestimate a Deficit.

    Hey Jimbo… Imagine if you went with Page's numbers and you were right… Why, there would be a pot a gold out there over the rainbow, wouldn't there be? And if you apply the Raitt theory on Due Credit, you'd be a hero!

    Nah, stick with your own numbers… They've served you well.

  10. Everyone is underestimating Flaherty. If his growth numbers are off, there are lots of assets available to put out on the market once things improve. He was highly successful at this during the legendary common sense days in Ontario. In real estate alone, the Federal government has hundreds of billions of dollars tied up unnecessarily. Simply moving Banff, Jasper and a few other prime parks into the private sector would be enough to cover his shortfalls.

    • Yeah, because selling out of desperation always nets you a great deal!!!!

      (Good to see proud Canadians on the ''right'' want to sell off our majestic national parks)

      • I think he was being sarcastic.
        I hope he was being sarcastic.