Rob Bernshaw, Columnist
Well folks! With majority PC governments, both provincially and federally, do we have a few more years of tax and spend on the horizon, with these governments taking our money and running away unchecked? With these governments getting high off of our tax dollars, while robbing our castles, who is going to get shot in the process?
Who is too blame for these governments, with a tax and spend mentality, from $16 dollar orange juice to exorbitant pension and severance packages, is it any wonder that these governments have no clue, as to what is truly important to the working public? Where is the stewardship involved in being open and honest with us, in regards to proper financial accountability and fiscal prudence? Where is the true transparency promised during election campaigns? Or is it only the window dressing used, to deceive the voting public?
It is great that after getting caught there are immediate appearances of being transparent and honest with us taxpayers. It is great that cabinet ministers and MLA’s jump on board with feet stomping and flags waving, along with temporary shouts of indignation and outrage, of 'how could this happen on our watch?'.
After the public outcry dust has settled, where is the permanent will, to continue proper financial stewardship and fiscal responsibility, with our cherished tax dollars?
Will this tax and spend mentality stop with the changing of the guard? We had the opportunity to find out, with two recent elections (one provincially and the other federally), and both elections proved that a massive wave of voters were afraid of change and were not willing to climb to the mountain top to see what was on the other side. These governments stayed in power, obtaining majority governments, and now all of us taxpayers, where a majority of the population did not vote, are paying the price of voter apathy.
With oil prices per barrel falling here in Alberta and around the world, what will be cut in order to balance the budget and appease the public? Will it be MLA or MP salaries and perks? Will it be the cutting of various expense accounts of all departments, including the Alberta Health Services board and executive members, along with the exorbitant salaries and perks currently being received? Will it be the lavish severance packages? Will it be public sector wages? Will it be less vacation travel under the guise of doing business on our dime (approximately $84,000 worth) by elected officials and the London 2012 Summer Olympic games?
Will that be the business or pleasure section please?
Will it be new taxes and user fees, on an already overtaxed population?
Will it be closing and shuttering of more seniors homes, like the one currently under fire in Carmangay Alberta? A 20-bed secured seniors’ facility, that offers specialized care for residents with Dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.
Will the most vulnerable of the population continue to suffer because these governments have not learned how to wisely use our tax dollars, entrusted to them and provided by dedicated voters and taxpayers?
Are we heading to outright rebellion in the streets, with mass revolts against what is perceived as too much already (like the students in Quebec recently)? When will this tax and spend attitude stop and common sense prevail? What government will take the fortitude and courage to truly stand up for us taxpayers, and fully keep their election campaign promises, in order to build, instead of destroying the confidence, that people once had in elected representatives? How long before a true revolt does happen?
Is it after we have nothing left to give and we finally wake up to the fact that taking our money and running is falling out of favor with Canadians, and we are tired of being shot and our castles robbed every time we turn around?
Is the temporary public outcry and hassle, given to these governments enough to change voter apathy in upcoming elections? Is it enough to change the way business is done today, never mind tomorrow?
Will Alberta Premier Alison Redford and Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper as ultimate stewards of our tax dollars heed the public outcry, and with due diligence correct the inadequacies in the system, or will the current trend of taking our money and running continue unabated?
After all is said and done, and the mess swept under the rug, these governments, are still taking our money and running, for the simple reason: because they can!
There is a classic song, first recorded in 1976 by the Steve Miller Band.
It is called: ‘Take the Money and Run’. Probably very appropriate today, considering what is happening with our tax dollars.
Any similarities to current political figures, in this song is purely coincidental, and probably or possibly portrayed due to possible interpretation in the mind of the listeners and viewers.