Thursday 20 November 2008

Throne speech: quick remarks

Looks like we'll be in for a pile of new spending. Yes, I know. Shocking.

Some specific things that jumped out at me:

"Prime Minister Harper is to be commended ..."Even though he's freezing your equalization payments? Interesting.

"On January 1st the small business tax rate, which at 2% is already the lowest small business rate in the country, will be reduced to just 1%." What's the point? This isn't where you're going to get your biggest bang for your buck. It's already low. Focus on those areas that are overtaxed.

"Construction of a 52km bike path along the Manitoba Floodway to Bird's Hill Park" That's good. I might even be able to hit that with a 15 minute ride from my house.

"This year, as work on the floodway expansion project enters its final stage, the Manitoba Floodway Authority will be tasked to develop a partnership with East Side communities for the construction of the all-weather road". Whaaaaa? A road through the pristine forests east of Lake Winnipeg??? But .. but .. I thought ..... explain to me again why BiPole III is going down the much more expensive West side route?

"On the East Side of Lake Winnipeg, new resources will be invested to support the bid for a UNESCO World Heritage designation and the development of sustainable ecotourism."Oh right, we need a road to transport the masses of tourists to our brand new UNESCO site, which will magically be transformed from a forest into a something equivalent to the Pyramids of Egypt. We already have ecotourism: it's called hunting and fishing. They will come with or without the UNESCO stamp. Besides them, of you think more than a couple dozen tourists will travel north of Manigotagan you're smoking something besides goldeye. We do need the road to serve the communities, but this UNESCO thing is waaaaay overblown.

"The revenues from Hydro exports ensure that Manitobans continue to benefit from having among the lowest electricity rates in the world." Ug. I'll get into this (again) someother time.

"This year our government will introduce new legislation to ban the use of hand-held cell phones or text messaging devices while driving." I don't #@*&% get it. Why is every jurisdiction banning hand-held cell phones and not cell phones? Virutally all studies have shown that hands-free are no safer. In fact, they are probably MORE dangerous because you're bound to talk on them longer and get more wrapped up in your conversation. Do it right or don't do it at all.

quotes courtesy of the CTV transcript.

5 comments: said...

There is a massive , mile wide swatch of bush cut all the way up the east side of Lake Winnipeg. You can even see it on Google Earth. It will be perfect for a road and Bipole 3. Funny how Bipole 3 didn't get a mention in the throne speech. You can also read my blog for my thoughts on it.

Anonymous said...

A who "gives a shit " speech. So utterly boring and unimaginative ...its so Manitoban.

cherenkov said...

Jimmy: yes I did read that.

Anon: except for a few little things like the cell phone ban, most of what was in there was previously announced. That's his formula for success though: don't make waves and spend lots of money.

BeerBellyBuddah said...

All the Throne Speech did was confirm that Doer has turned his agenda over to the more 'tepid', cautious and unimaginative voices of his inner (oops, meant to say insular) circle. Our government's political agenda is, at best, a BANAL vision borne of a status-quo long past its prime. Time they opted to do something more than keep their ship of state out of harm's way - lest Doer become the new Duff c. 1967 and leave his party without a soul.

cherenkov said...

Don't hold your breath, BBB.

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