LETTERS: Budget is a snake oil salesman’s promise

Forty-odd years pass and we think we would have learned some lessons.

In the early to mid 1970s, then-prime minister Pierre Trudeau and his finance minister, John Turner, discovered they could buy the hearts and minds of the people with the people’s own money.

Serious budget deficits followed after revealing the Liberal budget. The budget set in motion what might be looked at as a law of circumstances. I like to liken it to a children’s folk song, There’s a Hole in the Bucket.

Forty-odd years pass and we think we would have learned some lessons, but recently Trudeau Junior and his Finance Minister, Bill Morneau, made their first attempt at buying the hearts and minds of the people.

But this time, it is different. They are not trying to make this purchase with the people’s money. Rather, they are putting the burden, knowingly, on our children, grandchildren and great grandchildren.

I can imagine some of you thinking, “He’s a Harper supporter and he’s upset because the Conservatives got trounced!”

Irrespective of what my political party leaning might be, I take issue more with the message than the messenger delivering it.

Pie in the sky pre-election 2015 promises were made in the shadow of 70s Trudeaumania. The traveling medicine show went from town to town, not staying long in any one place. Unlike the early travelling medicine shows of the wild west, no one skulked out of town — they just came, made a pitch (the promise of making Canada a better place for Canadians) whatever that means. The grandiose promises and claims that were made are no different from the touted elixirs put forth by the medicine show “doctors” that claimed almost anything could be cured with what they offered. Not much difference here except that the elixir here is about $30 billion this year instead of a $2 bottle of “snake oil.”

This budget will, in all probability, go down as the biggest give and take budget of all time! It offers little concessions here and then takes from somewhere else (there). It’s sort of a quasi checks and balances situation. It’s jiggery-pokery at best.

The move is an absolute disgrace.

The 2016 “budget” is a farce.

Ron Barillaro

Penticton