Mr Harper borrowed money to reduce the GST in 2006 and 2008.
He promised to cut the GST, and he did it. What he didn’t say is that every dollar of reduction would end up as debt and that we would be paying interest on that debt for at least 20 years.
Inside the Conservative Party the slogan must have been something like “Buy votes now, let voters pay later.”
For the country the Conservatives seemed to offer a free lunch. A tax reduction with no cost. Enough Canadians took the bait.
Did Mr Harper think that he could actually balance the budget without the revenue that previous governments needed? Maybe. He would have had to be either ignorant or deluded, but he might have believed it. Or he might have been cynically buying a majority with other people’s money. He might have thought, ” If they are dumb enough to take this deal they deserve what they get.” Economists warned that it was a poor idea.
The total increase in debt under Harper is about $160 billion. That is $12,864.32 per Canadian household. That $12,864 is debt you will have to repay someday. It is Mr Harper’s legacy to Canada, to Canadians, and to you.
The loss in revenue from the GST cuts seems to be about $140 billion. That is 20 percent of GST revenues from 2008 to the end of this fiscal year plus 10 percent from 2006 to 2008. Blogger Scott Ross calculated the interest costs at $48 Billion. Feel free to offer alternative estimates. A billion more or less wont affect the argument.
Maybe your remember all the talk about what a great Finance Minister Flaherty was. The truth is he participated in passing off an enormous lie on the Canadian people. He was an economic shyster who never balanced a budget.
We were fooling ourselves if we thought we wouldn’t pay for the sins of the Conservative government that we elected. Judgement Day will come. Mr Harper will retire with a terrific pension. We will be left holding the bag.