The mild-mannered Minister Morneau.

To think that it was only during the last half of last year that I was calling for the finance minister’s head. This week’s budget hardly left me feeling fonder. I thought Bill Morneau showed his true patrician colours in failing to defend his budget last year. What the hell is he going to do now? Is this year’s budget more or less defensible?

I had cause to laugh about it the next morning when I heard a local member of parliament lambaste Minister Morneau for his deficits. This particular politician is a former fireman who dresses like an undertaker and tries to act like a lawyer (the only professionals in Barrie who seem to want to wear ties). I had watched this guy on city council for a few years, where he had never showed much understanding of basic mathematics.

Frankly, federal deficits are about the same as paying your monthly bills on a cash-back credit card. You have more cash on hand and can have more money than you expected at the end of the year.

My mother was the accountant for two very successful companies in Toronto and at the same time, she raised six kids by herself. In her spare time, she taught business to adults and helped establish the Guild of Accountants.

And could that woman ever manage a household budget! I had to wear a lot of my older brothers’ hand-me-downs but we ate well. Only two of my brothers have post-graduate degrees but the one who died a millionaire had dropped out of high school.

It is very nice that Bill Morneau and his boss are such devout feminists. There is nothing they can tell me about it. Though I am a little surprised that they have not scoped out the cost of bringing female government employees’ salaries in line with men’s. This should have happened a long time ago.

But what really surprises me is the small change being offered to support better local journalism in Canada. After the millions that government has spend over the years studying our news media, you would think there would be a better understanding. When Morneau does not have the sense or understanding needed to tax the Googles and the Facebooks and the Netflix of this world, what hope is there?

After due consideration, I think this budget can quickly be forgotten. And I still think Justin Trudeau would be smart to dump Morneau. I think he is too much a dupe for his department.


Copyright 2018 © Peter Lowry

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