Excerpts from Jim Flaherty’s budget speech (with Super-Expert Analysis) - Macleans.ca

Excerpts from Jim Flaherty’s budget speech (with Super-Expert Analysis)

SCOTT FESCHUK reads between the lines of the budget


jim flahertyFlaherty: As I rise in this House today, our nation is at a crossroads. Some would urge us to turn at this crossroads. Experience tells us this would eventually lead us backward.

Super-Expert Analysis: Wait… what? If you turned left at a crossroads, how would you wind up going backward? You’d have turned left, not around. (Who wrote this speech? My Dad? My Dad has a terrible sense of direction. You’re supposed to be retired, Dad. Why are you confusing Jim Flaherty?)


Flaherty: We can see our destination on the horizon. It is a high point, not only in our nation’s history of increasing prosperity, but also a high point to which the world will look for inspiration.

Super-Expert Analysis: Our destination is Yao Ming?


Flaherty: [Our destiny] is a Canada in which our children and grandchildren will surpass us.

Super-Expert Analysis: Although not if we’re sharp enough to trip those tiny bastards and sprint off ahead.


Flaherty: A year before the crisis, we saw the risk of a slowdown.

Super-Expert Analysis: Weeks after the crisis hit, we continued to play down its potential impact. Indeed, even after the recession had begun, we were still insisting that there would be no recession — that there could be no recession. Are we incompetent? Are we liars? It’s all part of the mystery.


Flaherty: Our government [has] managed the nation’s finances responsibly.

Super-Expert Analysis: What Flaherty means is that his government pissed away a massive surplus and now has a $56-billion deficit, for which it is “responsible.”


Flaherty: Like virtually all other countries, we have needed to run a substantial deficit to [endure the crisis]. Unlike other countries, we are in a position to ensure our deficit will be temporary.

Super-Expert Analysis: Suck it, Spain.


Flaherty: [It is possible] to meet our current needs without jeopardizing long-term growth. The proof is in our performance.

Super-Expert Analysis: That’s what she said.


Flaherty: Canadians understand the need for certainty, stability and leadership.

Super-Expert Analysis: Yes, after four years Canadians certainly understand the need for leadership.


Flaherty: Our government is focused on jobs and growth for one simple reason: Canadians are focused on jobs and growth.

Super-Expert Analysis: Wait, does that mean if we all focus on having a big party with steel drums and hobo clowns, Flaherty will make that happen? Everybody concentrate!


Flaherty: My job, our government’s job, is to respond to [Canadians’] worries with help and hope. That is what drives us every day.

Super-Expert Analysis: That, and our chauffeurs.


Flaherty: We will establish a commission to reduce red tape… [and we will close] unfair tax loopholes. These loopholes allow a few businesses and individuals to take advantage of hard-working Canadians who pay their fair share.

Super-Expert Analysis: Apparently, the idiots who’ve been running this country since 2006 have shamefully allowed these injustices to fester.


Flaherty: In this Budget, our government is keeping another promise.

Super-Expert Analysis: Please say jetpacks, please say jetpacks…


Flaherty: Some say we should not follow through on our [stimulus] commitment… Some argue that we should cancel these tax reductions [for businesses]… Some are proposing big, expensive new government programs.

Super-Expert Analysis: I don’t know who this mysterious “some” guy is, but he is apparently quite the buffoon.


Flaherty: We take the same approach that Canadian families take in managing their household budgets.

Super-Expert Analysis: We’re buying me an iPad? Awesome!


Flaherty: At all times, government must remember the true source of our prosperity.

Super-Expert Analysis: Income taxes paid by Nickelback.


Flaherty: Just days ago, the greatest athletes of the world gathered in the magnificent Western gateway to our Canada.

Super-Expert Analysis: I believe the word the Finance Minister is looking for is “Vancouver.”


Flaherty: Let us savour the achievements of our Canadian Olympic champions. Our future is reflected in their medals.

Super-Expert Analysis: First of all, let this serve as a valuable lesson: never begin an austerity program by scrimping on your speechwriter. And second: are you saying our future is in the hands of skeleton gold medalist Jon Montgomery? Because that dude is psycho.


Excerpts from Jim Flaherty’s budget speech (with Super-Expert Analysis)

  1. Suggestion: a photo caption contest for pic of Guergis, still in front benches, staring into camera over Harper's shoulder as he answered questions during QP. I would also expect Opposition to be smart enough to use this for press release, photo contests, etc. Ex, have picture of Harper, with correct quote and rebuttal below, and have cartoon bubble above Guergis, with pithy summary of PM position: “Puck You People! Puck Democracy! I Hate This hellhole Parliament!” I disagreed on Opp asking for resignation based on principle and logic. But not media and others. I did also say she should resign, and terrible politics not to, and Cons should and will pay price if so. And as Lib, was hopeful cons really would be so stupid as to leave her in, as they have. So I say, have at her and PM, and link them together, “disrespectin' parliament and canadians”.

    also, re. a recent Feschuk anthem post, another point to consider for you: I too honestly wonder, often, if govt actually trying to lose power. MPCC would have buried detainee thing re. public consciousness, but too far gone now. Mad anthem suggestion, Guergis still minister, etc.. Maybe they don't want to be in govt when tax hikes and cuts come? I don't know, but hard to believe Opp being given gift after gift by mistake (tribute to Opp…”abilities” that nothing come of it yet). Maybe Opp doesn't want power either? What is real, unreal, bluff, doublebluff, triplebluff, etc.? I just stick to “reality” as best I can see it, but maybe I'm wrong. Who's to say?

    PS. If this comment comes through, it means previous problems were caused by verbatim quotes from Guergis.

    • It might be faster if you sent these suggestions directly to LPC headquarters rather then through Feschuk.

  2. I believe "some guy" may be some gawd awful compilation of Ignatieff with Crit. Reasoning. Yikes a frog with a unibrow!

  3. "Some" say we should just surrender and have our organs and limbs removed in an orderly fashion.

  4. Funny, I received a Notice of Lien against my internal organs this week from a Chinese Minister of something or other. That can't be right, can it?

    • Well, if you'd rather support the Canadian organ industry, I can hook you up with a local guy.

  5. Jim Flaherty 2006: Canada's New Government will never go into deficit.

    Jim Flaherty 2008: We're not a government who raises taxes.

    We believe you Jim, at least 30 % of us do.

  6. scott i really think this could be the perfect theme song for the budget. it literally says nothing and is meaningless, but at the same time like watching a train wreck.

    [youtube eNxygsLGHSQ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eNxygsLGHSQ youtube]

    • ROFL i forgot that he even has the SAME haircut as flaherty! Don't miss 1min 50sec.

    • I was just gonna say that this had such a Colbert-style tone to it, until I saw the video museme posted, which was actually used on The Report last night.
      You don't happen to be a fan on Colbert, do you Scott?

      • Haven't seen the show over the last couple weeks, what with being at the Olympics and all, but i'm a huge fan. I was also one who believed the concept of that show would never work. I was very glad to discover how wrong I was (happens a lot).

    • LOL I see I wasn't the only one watching The Colbert Report last night.

      • i wish i had the power to caption over this with flaherty's speech. it would be amazing.

        • Don't be silly, no one has that power.

  7. Those jetpacks will sure come in handy during the coming robot apocalypse. (Uh…there will be jetpacks, right?)

    • Jetpack? I got your jetpack right here!

    • i'm a fan. they're played every now and then on Sirius XMU.

  8. Just once, I'd like to hear a finance minister say "We aren't at a crossroads. Honestly, we can pretty much do anything and it won't make a difference."

  9. Finance Minister Jim Flaherty – "with the lowest debt-to-GDP ratio in the industrialized world (31% compared to 67% in the U.S., and 75% in the United Kingdom)". Is that like Canada's one of the worlds top three polluters? http://www.midlandfreepress.com/ArticleDisplay.as

    Joe Knipfel

  10. Bravo!
    Have the veal, tip your server, he'll be here all week!

  11. Also ,, do you think the comedy channel could give you a show like Stewart or Colbert?
    I'd http://that.
    Rogers? Are you listening?

  12. Flaherty: We take the same approach that Canadian families take in managing their household budgets.

    Translation: We load up our credit cards to the limit, but, hey, we've got this great consultant on tap who's going to consolidate them and cut our debt in half.

    • Or he could load up the government's credit card and then ignore the debt, claiming that some guy in Paraguay stole the government's identity and that those long distance phone calls aren't really his.

  13. Personally I want to hear a financial speech where it starts and ends with this…

    "We be screwed! Really, really screwed! I mean we ain't screwed enough for people to ignore that we're making money outta nothin'. But we're screwed enough that I'm planning on robbing my neighbours, pawning the stuff off on Eduardo the local 'fence' and booting it to Bora Bora."

  14. Note to Feschuk:
    You and the Opposition forget that the Govt. paid down $40 billion towards the debt. This is before we knew that the Americans were about to drag the rest of the financial world down the drain along with them.

  15. On the subject of crossroads — as Yogi Berra said, "When you come to a fork in the road, take it." That's good advice, whether from Yogi or from Flaherty, whoever he may be.

  16. As an ex-Liberal, I am still wondering how long they were going to continue pissing away that $14B surplus they love bragging about. This minority government is our (somewhat anal?) response to the dangers of the one-party system that surfaced after the PCs self destructed under Campbell. NO ONE-PARTY SYSTEM! (accidental or otherwise)

  17. If you want to hear something worse – vote for the other two of the given cards:" #6" -Iggy or "Valet"- Jack and you would have The Perfect Disaster…These two crookes screw you up faster then you can realize it…