Debt

Horgan speaks to the Premier

Hansard, May 28, 2015

The notion of a Debt-free British Columbia — hard to imagine when you’ve seen $135-billion increase in debt and contractual obligations under the B.C. Liberal watch. But somehow, in the fantasy world of the B.C. Liberals, you can make the assertion that we will be debt-free; you just don’t have to realize it.

It’s these assertions of reality that, I think, have most British Columbians perplexed. You say we’re going to be debt-free, yet the prospect of that is not even remotely on the horizon. You say we’re going to be the most open and transparent government in Canada, yet you have political staff deleting public records.

…she said repeatedly yesterday during these debates, that she’s leaving more money in people’s pockets. It’s clearly not the case, unless you are in the top 2 percent of wage earners. The only solemn promise that the B.C. Liberals kept from 2013 was to give a tax break to people making over $150,000 a year.

A $236-million hit to the treasury, no increases in welfare rates, no increases in disability programs, no increases for real wages, 20-cent increase in the minimum wage — two dimes to rub together for those working for the least amount that they can be paid. Twenty cents. But for millionaires….

Millionaires will get a $17,000 rebate from the provincial treasury. That’s putting money into people’s pockets. Sadly, 98 percent of the people don’t have access to that…

 

Categories: Debt, Horgan, John, Taxation

5 replies »

  1. Government measures debt as debt/GDP.

    So, as debt grows, as long as GDP grows the ratio stays the same, and everything is OK!

    So the GDP HAS to Grow, EVERY YEAR!

    The fact that the planet is finite, with limits, doesn't matter to Government. Just make the GDP Grow!

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  2. Unfortunately, games are played in measuring both GDP and debt. If BC Liberals finance a highway, bridge or hospital through a P3, that creates a Contractual Obligation to pay over time. But they like to pretend that's not part of the provincial debt. If they issue $3 billion in bonds and use the proceeds to build a highway, bridge or hospital, they consider that debt. However, essentially they are both debt but, by not counting the contractual obligations, government claims to have a healthy debt/GDP ratio.

    Of course, there is another problem in measuring GDP, which is not a hugely useful statistic. For example, if you spend $1 million building a school, it counts the same as spending $1 million to pave farmland. Similarly, if I grow a million dollars worth of organic apples, that's worth the same as if I dig holes all over Stanley Park and produce $1 million worth of coal. Obviously, in calculating GDP, ancillary social and environmental costs are ignored. Clearly, the harm potential from digging coal is much greater than for growing apples but it's not reflected when government calculates its all-important ratio.

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  3. Our debt-burdened financial system appears to be coming to an end:

    “Here’s an astonishing statistic; more than 30pc of all government debt in the eurozone – around €2 trillion of securities in total – is trading on a negative interest rate.”

    Jeremy-Warner-Negative-interest-rates-put-world-on-course-for-biggest-mass-default-in-history

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  4. The Canada Federal Govt plays deceptive games as well, saying they have reduced the Federal Deficit by over $55 billion.

    Maybe they have reduced the annual deficit, which was $55.6 billion in 2009, but they have added about $160 billion to the overall debt since 2008.

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