Tuesday, August 24, 2010

 

MOOMBEAMS?

I am trying to detect a lesson worthwhile - Ah Hell! Anything worthy - Over this kerfuffle out on the country's left coast about what the conventional media has been describing as the "ticking HST time Bomb."

In Canada's La-La-Land, British Columbia locals lined-up, 700,000 strong, behind their former disgraced Premier, William Vander Zalm to pony-up on a petition to (a) overthrow the Government of Premier, Gordon Campbell; - (b) Force the Legislative Assembly into reversing an earlier vote - (and/or) (c) Hold a province-wide Referendum.

The issue is British-Columbia's dreaded HST, a 12% Value-added tax which went into effect on July first, the same day Ontario's HST of 13% also kicked-in. In fact, there are now just a couple of provinces without their own Harmonized Sales Tax, which combines the national Goods and Services Tax (GST) with their provincial sales tax.

The difference is that British Columbia is Canada's only province with a "direct democracy law", a concept borrowed from a handful of States south of the border whereby if sufficient names are collected on a petition; elected officials and the measures they represent can be "recalled from office." In B.C. apparently everything has been forgiven of their former Premier, Bill Vander Zalm, forced-out of office in 1991 over allegations of "conflict of interest" involving his family owned theme park: 'Fantasy Garden World.'

"Recall Measures" have been practiced foremost in California the "Land of Fantasy" where the recall of Governor, Gray Davis, in October 2003 over the cost of energy production (electricity) promoted strong-man, turned actor Arnold Schwarzenegger into the Gubernatorial Mansion on promises of strong tax-cutting measures - Governor Schwarzenegger will step-down from office on November 2nd this year; amidst California's worst economic slump since the collapse of the gold-rush of 1848...



Former Governor Jerry Brown hopes to be returned to California's highest office to replace Governor Schwarzenegger. Mr. Brown who twice sought and lost the U.S. Democratic Presidential nomination three decades ago was known as Governor "Moonbeam" back in the late 1970's after pop singer Linda Ronstadt described her relationship with Brown as "My little Moonbeam" in Rolling Stone Magazine. - I digress!

Whether in California, British-Columbia or elsewhere the issue is clearly just who will pay the bills if taxpayers continue to demand better services but refuse to provide the funds necessary to cover the costs? An issue which is all too real for the residents of my native province of New Brunswick on Canada's east coast. regardless of the B.C. recall law, or California's November election; New Brunswick ratepayers will be first at the polls this fall, on September 27. Second smallest of the country's ten provinces, the 750,000 people of New Brunswick face a staggering debt of almost $10-Billion or about $13,000 for every man, woman, child. And; while this untenable provincial debt should be the main focus of the election, the province's main political parties are using every measure to avoid talking about it.

Just like in British-Columbia, California and all of those other places which have come before it seems everyone is counting on "moonbeams," miracles and prayers, maybe a little "Pixie Dust" to avoid the inevitable payoff to the piper.

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