Our politicians’ rhetoric of restraint – let’s hope they mean it

This week ‘Big Government’ was back in the news with various Canadian political leaders suggesting it’s time for restraint.  (ed. – They now are considering what to do with the barn door long after the horse has galloped out of sight.)  

Sun News has responded to these new cautionary messages from the PM and some Premiers like Dalton McGuinty with heightened skepticism and a dose of deserved ridicule.

But, before we get to the news, let’s refresh our memories on how deep our hole is.  Our national debt clock is clicking over at an incredible pace:  http://www.debtclock.ca

Brian Lilly of Sun TV takes the Federal Government to task in his Lilley’s Pad blog:  Cut gov’t spending now and cut deep – First cut must be deep  He comments:

     The Harper government spends too much money and has spent too much since it came to power. This needs to stop….  With a federal debt of more than $577 billion, getting control of government spending is imperative. If the cutting is going to be serious, it will mean cutting full government agencies, boards and corporations.

Christina Blizzard pulls no punches in her dislike of McGuinty’s newfound restraint messaging. In her Toronto Sun column,  Hang your head in shame, McGuinty she writes:

     Having the Liberal government preach restraint and the need to find new ways of doing things is a bit like the guy who kills his parents then wants sympathy because he’s an orphan.

     When it comes to fiscal mismanagement, Premier Dalton McGuinty’s wounds are all self-inflicted.  He and Finance Minister Dwight Duncan have recklessly dug this province into a massive black hole of irresponsible over-spending.

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Q – So, why should Canadians be concerned about how big our governments have become? 

A – Because we are paying dearly for it now – and will be for years to come.

Consider federal government pensions for our bulging civil service.  The federal public-sector pension plan has about 561,000 members (317,000 active workers, 180,000 retired employees and almost 60,000 survivors).  Federal civil servants currently contribute 35% of pension service costs, with the government (as the employer) contributing 65%.  A recent report released by the C.D. Howe Institute said federal public-sector pension plans are $227-billion in deficit and, if left untended, Canadian taxpayers will be on the hook to bail out rich civil-servant plans.

Again, it’s all surreal as Canadians begin this discussion while countries like Greece implode under the weight of their civil service.

The Canadian public sector is unsustainable – a train wreck ready to happen – as we’ve pointed out in past posts:

(For a complete listing of our posts on the thread of Big Government, you can read dozens of articles – tagged ‘big_government.’)

Developing through 2012…

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