Monday, March 21, 2011

On long-term choices

With most of the focus on the NDP's budget decision based around (often inaccurate) Lib messaging and the Cons' apparent attempt to earn a bare 50% passing grade when compared to the party's demands, I'll return to a point I made earlier.

Nearly all of the Cons' apparent concessions look to be time-limited policies which don't offer any compelling reason to keep a government in power. But the point I'd watch for is the nature of changes to the GIS, which could easily be handled in one of two ways.

If the Cons' budget includes a permanent GIS boost, then the NDP can rightfully take credit for keeping seniors out of poverty for decades to come. And that would at least leave room for a serious discussion about whether it's worth allowing the Cons to pass the budget provided that it doesn't include any poison pills of an equal and opposite effect.

Conversely, if the Cons only provide for a single year of improved GIS funding which would stand to drop retirees back into poverty for 2012, then there looks to be no long-term benefit to make up for the short-term cost of supporting the Cons' general policies. And in that case, it shouldn't take long to conclude that the best option is to seek a trip to the polls.

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