By Harvey Oberfeld
Monday September 19th, 2016
Surprise! ANOTHER BC surplus …. this one $1.9 BILLION … is now predicted to be racked up in the months before the next provincial election!
After YEARS of the Liberals hitting the taxpayers with every increase in taxes and fees and premiums they could find … Liberal Finance Minister Mike de Jong has reported revenues in the current fiscal year will now come in at $1.6 BILLION OVER original estimates.
Not “Wow” how GREAT that is … but “Wow!” how could de Jong deliver that information with a straight face, without doubling over in guffaws at the obvious farce of “Eureka! Another “unexpected” pre-election surplus!!!” ?
And “Wow” how could the media be so restrained as to also not burst out laughing right there … at the ridiculousness of the “event” they were covering?
And “Wow” how could so many supposed experienced political journalists not ask the Minister if the government thinks the voters are all fools?
And “Wow” how could the media not pepper the Minister with a sustained ATTACK OF QUESTIONS challenging the credulity …and the ethics … of the Liberals’ oh-so-cynical tactic of suddenly discovering and projecting HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS OF DOLLARS EXTRA just in time to buy taxpayers’ votes with their own money?
Did I miss it? Did someone REALLY go after de Jong HARD on this? Or Premier Christy Clark?
It’s one of those rare occasions when, Yes, I would have liked to have still been “on the job”.
I would have posed the following to de both de Jong AND Clark:
“Do you really expect the public to BELIEVE that this HUGE surplus … based on “improved revenue forecasts of $2.5 BILLION” … $1.6 BILLION BETTER than had been originally ”forecast”” … has just coincidentally occurred just months before the election ????”
“To what extent does this SURPRISE surplus represent DELIBERATE overtaxing of the public previously, to buy votes by dishing out goodies to the electorate to buy votes???”
“If not deliberate, doesn’t such FREQUENT under-estimating of revenues in the year before an election occur and then … WOW! … the discovery of huge surpluses in the months before demonstrate INCOMPETENTCY in economic forecasting ???”
Of course, the answers … or should I say “responses” would have filled with political bafflegab … but at least have provided some amusement to the fleeced taxpayers.
And a lot of food for thought to the more politically savvy ones.