Will what we’ve bought turn out to be what we really need?

Time will tell, but let's give our new leadership a chance

It wasn’t much of a surprise last Thursday (at least for some of us) when Ontario voters decided the “best before” date on the incumbent party had expired.

Indeed, some might say that particular bottle had long ago stopped being milk but some sort of curdled cheese-like product that no longer resembled what it might have been.

Remember Dalton McGuinty’s TV ads (in the 2003 campaign) that told us “I won’t cut your taxes but I won’t raise them either”?

But now that we have a fresh bottle in the fridge, the questions will come fast and furious.

Like “what exactly did we buy?” and “will it taste as good as the people who were selling it said it would?”

But rather than spend a lot of time worrying about questions that will ultimately play out in the next few weeks/months, I’d like to offer some “what if?” thoughts that I hope those in leadership will at least give some serious consideration.

Here are three to get us started:

  • What if the new government looked at spending with a view to “is this a ‘need’ or a ‘want’?”
  • What if we didn’t call government spending an “investment” (in whatever) but instead referred to it as “this is what we’re spending your tax dollars on”?
  • What if the new leadership told us the truth instead of what they think we want to hear?

I could think of a few more, but I think you get the point.

Here’s a few more to ponder as we begin the week and give the new government the opportunity to begin shaping the renewal of Ontario, one of the most heavily indebted sub-sovereign (as in “not a country”) jurisdictions on the planet.

Governments don’t create jobs. They create an environment in which capital will either flow or flee. We’d like it to flow here, but there are no guarantees that without government “getting out of the way” that it will.

Lower taxes is part of what will encourage capital to come here. If you think that’s a bad thing or you think you and others should benefit from the good that will flow as a result of lower taxes, consider buying shares in the companies whose shareholders are investing.

Governments don’t have a right to the money that it gets in the form of taxes or fees. We as citizens authorize those and we have the right to withhold them (through legislation and implementation of policy, done by those we elect).

Related to the above, please don’t refer to tax cuts as it “costing the government” something.

On a positive note, let’s give our new Premier-elect the benefit of the doubt. And the time needed to honour his pledges to the electorate.

Doug Ford said repeatedly that he would do this “For the People.”

Time will tell how “fresh tasting” that statement will be a few months from now.

Get the Lambton Shield Daily Brief in your inbox:

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.