Wednesday 25 March 2009

Bits and bites: Ikea, CBC, more CBC, Magic Accounting

Oooooh. To much to talk about and not enough time to write. Must use point form.

Quick, approve it before they change their minds!

No time is being wasted in making sure we land the master angler marlin of big box stores. I am dismayed that more scrutiny is not going into this proposal. Rather than repeating my last post, I'll give you a scorecard of the proposal:
o IKEA - A
o Location - C+
o up to seven additional big boxes - D
o numerous smaller retailers - depends how they do it
a) The current layout - F.
b) My idea for a walkable outdoor mall - best idea in the history of ideas: A+
o 100-room hotel - B
o 500-unit condo building - if you want to live in the parking lot of a Target with a railway track 100 yards away, knock yourself out. - C
o 150,000 square feet of office space - D Go fill an empty building or parking lot downtown.
o 16-screen movie theatre - C (which other theatre(s) will close because of this??)
o water park (not yet proposed, but just you wait) - B+
o new traffic lights on Kenaston - big fat F This should be a deal-breaker. Go back to the drawing board and try again.

Is this good news or bad news?

CBC president Hubert Lacroix announced Wednesday that a $171-million budget shortfall is forcing the taxpayer-funded broadcaster to slash about 800 jobs and cut both TV and radio programming.
Wow. Welcome to the real world boys. Though some cuts may affect the on-air product, those 70 middle-management positions won't be missed.

Quirks and Quarks

Say what you will about CBC's excessive political correctness, biases, and extravagant spending,
there are a few things worth tuning in for. The snaggle-toothed host of Quirks and Quarks, Bob McDonald, gave a free speach at the U of M Monday (thanks for the head's up? you're welcome) that lasted over an hour. It was an entertaining speach from a guy who makes a living communicating scientific research and ideas in terms that everyday joes can understand. Check out the show if you're not familiar with it.

Budget Thoughts

Haven't had a good look yet, but new blogger NDP Convert gives it 5 stars. Brian at JDS doesn't rate the budget, but he seems to have a strange fascination with Hugh McFadyen's face. I think I should maybe assess it for myself.

One quick initial thought: The elimination of small business tax rate is not smart. Not good bang for your buck. NDPers will tell you "60% of all jobs are from small businesses" but that is irrelevant. It does not follow that cutting this tax rate will increase jobs more than cutting other tax rates. Small businesses are less likely to relocate to another province, for example. And for goodness sake, they are only taxed at 1% as it is. Maybe the reason large businesses account for fewer jobs than small businesses is because large businesses are overtaxed?? Chipping away at the Corporate and payroll tax rates would do much more for job creation. This cut is purely ideological.

Anyhoo, perhaps I'll come back with more thoughts on the budget later. Or perhaps I'll come back with a buyers guide to prostitutes. You just never know!

I'll leave you with this -- my tribute to Gary Doer, who was able to provide us with a balanced budget including debt repayment, while simultaneously increasing the provincial debt (again):


Anonymous said...

Budgets are about balance.

Yeah - like balancing what you say with what you do.

Anonymous said...

Doer has been up to these tricks for years now, but no one can make it stick to him. Kinda says something about the ability of the opposing voices too.

NDP Convert said...

We have balanced what we say and do. That is why Manitoba is the best place in Canada to live right now.

cherenkov said...

"That is why Manitoba is the best place in Canada to live right now."

I'll think of a witty response to that after I finish shoveling 5' of snow off my driveway and mopping up the water in my basement.

Mike said...

I'm still shaking my head at councillors' attitude on the IKEA proposal: "We've gotta approve this *now* - right *now* - or the developers might change their minds."

Hey, councillors: If the developers really want it, they can wait a little while. If you have to rush to approval, that tells me something's wrong.

NDP Convert said...

Cherenkov this comes every year you should be ready.

Anonymous said...

A+ for outdoor walkable mall - really? They don't call it Winterpeg for nothing.

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