Blessed hindsight -

Blessed hindsight


Bit late to this, but here is Michael Ignatieff’s interview with Canadian Business.

CB: The NDP and the Liberals pushed for a stimulus plan. Now everyone’s complaining about the deficit. So what would you have done differently?

MI: Tighter fiscal control between 2006 to 2008, strategic investment in things that make us more productive, and competitive and strategic infrastructure investments that ought to have been made are only now in the pipeline. And a clearer sense, beginning in 2007, when the economic situation went south, of earlier corrective action. We would have enhanced the gas-tax transfer to all municipalities. That would have gotten the money out infinitely faster. The numbers we’re running are, not much north of 12% of infrastructure investment has actually gone out the door.

The other thing we would have done very differently is strategic investment in places that make a difference. All across the country, people want Vancouver and Halifax to be working more efficiently; they want the borders to be working more efficiently. That strategic spine of export infrastructure, we would have named that as a priority of investment. The other thing is much more robust and energetic effort, beginning in 2006, to build our export performance in China and India.


Blessed hindsight

  1. Well, there is enough evidence in the Liberal track record on such things to suggest that hindsight isn't the only thing at play here. Many of the things Iggy talked about Liberals likely would have done. Look at the last platform (including certain provisions of the green shift which provided historic massive tech investments).

  2. Considering the Tories are doing next to nothing in a strategic fashion beyond the all too obvious strategy to get re-elected, it's probably safe to assume that Vaughn City Council, rascals that they are, could probably do a better and less corrupt job than the Harper's lot.

  3. people want Vancouver and Halifax to be working more efficiently… we would have named that as a priority of investment.

    Wow. Imagine that – identifying strategic needs in a logical fashion, despite per-capita ratios and constituencies… rather than crying foul when underfunded parts of the country receive more money than others. What a change the Liberals would be in power, compared to the current logic within the Liberal party.

    (But… but… Vancouver and Halifax are Liberal and NDP strongholds! Slush fund! Not fair! Bias!! What about all those poor Saskatchewan and Alberta ports to the Pacific and Atlantic oceans? They deserve equal funding too!)

    • Its called the Asian Pacific Gateway initiative and its been underway for years.

      good grief. Most of the things Iggy is talking about has ALREADY happened.

      He was just too busy not being here and then running for leader that he didn't notice.

  4. And a clearer sense, beginning in 2007, when the economic situation went south, of earlier corrective action.

    Can anyone provide a link to any corrective economic action that deputy Liberal leader Michael Ignatieff proposed in 2007? After all, he saw the whole thing coming, right?

    Blessed hindsight, indeed.

  5. to translate the above libspeak : nothing~

  6. How does Iggy's answer compare to Dion's answer to what you would have done differently than Cons? Since Dion was in charge when all this took place, Iggy's answer is even more 'angels on the head of a pin' than normal. Iggy was asked what he would have done differently over the past year and he gazes into crystal ball and talks about events that occurred years ago. Well done, Iggy, I guess that means you would have not done much differently than Cons.

    • Dion was the only one who admitted that a deficit was a real possibility and was eviscerated for it. That speaks of a level of pragmatism that has been and continues to evade the CPC. Irony indeed.

      • Dion was one of most hapless leaders I have ever seen. Green Shift probably would have won Dion a majority if election were held anytime between 2002-07. And as you point out, Dion was defenestrated for his admission but Harper/Flaherty and their $50 + billion deficit are doing better than ever, according to recent polls.

        Politics isn't fair and that's what's great about it.

        • Yes indeed, it is not about doing the right thing, it is about politics. Great way to run a country, and you wonder why our economy will continue down the crapper…under the "conservatives".

  7. Give Iggy a break. He's a professor. That's what professors do. They analyze things after they happen.