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Thread: Guardian of the West - Brad Wall on equalization

  1. #1

    Default Guardian of the West - Brad Wall on equalization

    There is some talk Brad Wall will be a future conservative Federal leader, perhaps even PM. He is certainly, a bit of a Ralph Klein, or Danny Williams, in that he speaks up loud for his province:

    “It is a lot of money to go out in a way that seems to be dated and not always efficient, and infrastructure and tax relief might be an option instead,” Wall said Wednesday.

    The premier said he simply wants a dialogue on changing the federally funded, constitutionally guaranteed program, which sees more than $17 billion a year given to poorer provinces. P.E.I. collects the most in equalization payments — $1,980 per person.

    He touted a specific option in media interviews — taking away half the program’s funding and using it for a combination of infrastructure work and tax cuts.

    “Imagine what 8.5 billion to 9 billion more federal dollars could do in terms of national infrastructure,” he said. “Perhaps Canadians would rather see a split between infrastructure investment and permanent, sustainable tax relief to build the economy.”
    http://news.nationalpost.com/news/ca...brad-wall-says

  2. #2
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    Harper used to be pro-west as well. Amazing how fast their tunes change when they actually get power.

    The second politicians get into office in Ottawa all they care about forever after is keeping that office. Nothing else matters to them. Don't expect Wall to be any different.

  3. #3

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    Complaining about equalization is a national past-time, however I'll surely be happy it's around when we need it. For all the money we share with other provinces, it's not like Alberta is some crappy place to live because of it.
    "Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from religious conviction" - Blaise Pascal

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    Wall's party is the successor to the Saskatchean PC Party. I wonder if they were hollering about excessive transfers back in the days when Saskatchewan was a beggar province?

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chmilz View Post
    Complaining about equalization is a national past-time, however I'll surely be happy it's around when we need it. For all the money we share with other provinces, it's not like Alberta is some crappy place to live because of it.
    I don't really have a problem with it either, it unites us as a country, the billions we give away, are in effect our "Norway trust fund", ours is just called "Investing in the Rest of Canada", as we would easily have had a similar fund to them if we had been an independent country with all Federal tax dollars collected in Alberta, spent in Alberta.

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    ^ Equalization payments are not even a minuscule dent in the size of Norway's fund. We don't have a fund solely out of our own incompetence and desire to sell off public resources at bargain basement prices. Our politicians seem to have modeled our resource sector on the Russian firesale to oligarchs after the collapse of the Soviet Union. It has nothing to do with equalization.

  7. #7

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    ^they aren't miniscule, Quebec alone has received more than a quarter of a trillion dollars, if that had been invested with compounding interest, it would be bigger than Norways fund. We choose to be part of Canada, we choose equalization, the price is we will never have a pot of gold, other than the security that we too can receive equalization one day if we need it. To think otherwise, that we could horde wealth while the rest of Canada struggles, is just selfish, as Brad Wall is being right now.

  8. #8

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    Regards to equalization payments, a large percentage of The west's workforce comes from the poorer provinces, and return there when they retire or in economic downturns. It's not unreasonable of them to expect a little help in education and healthcare.

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    Quote Originally Posted by moahunter View Post
    ^they aren't miniscule, Quebec alone has received more than a quarter of a trillion dollars, if that had been invested with compounding interest, it would be bigger than Norways fund. We choose to be part of Canada, we choose equalization, the price is we will never have a pot of gold, other than the security that we too can receive equalization one day if we need it.
    That isn't how equalization works. Equalization is not an "extra" payment that you siphon out of reserves. It is a method of distributing funds that were already collected. Equalization is not from province to province. It is from the feds to provinces. The "quarter million" from Quebec would not otherwise be given to provinces to invest, it would just be spent in Federal revenues instead of transferred to provinces.

    It isn't an option to "stop paying equalization payments" because we don't pay them. We pay the same old average federal taxes as everyone else, and just get less back dependent on our ability to fund core services.

    The failure to properly manage our finances is no one's fault but our own. We elected plutocrats who gave away public resources for pennies on the dollar for 44 years, and we are demanding our new government continue to do the same thing as a result of our obscene Stockholm syndrome with oil barons. Norway has a massive excise tax on petroleum, and a huge personal tax. That is how they have a trust fund.
    Last edited by Jaerdo; 06-08-2015 at 10:38 AM.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jaerdo View Post
    That isn't how equalization works.
    It is how it works, virtually every dollar the Federal government gets, comes from tax revenue from businsess and individuals in the provinces. Every dollar they give extra to a province, isn't from some magical reserve, its from those dollars, its a transfer from those who give the dollars to those who receive the dollars. That's the price of bringing Canada together, we can't pay that price and horde our wealth at the same time. To do so, would be incredibly selfish.
    Last edited by moahunter; 06-08-2015 at 10:42 AM.

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    You don't have the option of "not paying equalization payments". The federal government is transferring federal tax dollars to provinces, end of story. They are not collecting special taxes for equalization, they are using federal tax dollars for it. If you want to complain about not getting enough federal transfers, do so, but that is not the issue here.

    The reason we don't have a Norway-like trust fund has nothing to do with a lack of federal transfers. Focusing on that is a red herring to distract us from the complete mess at the provincial level. The problem here is solely because our fiscal management has been completely irresponsible for the last four decades.

  12. #12

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    ^It has everything to do with it, as soon as we started building up a fund, the transfers to Alberta slowed down, we got less health transfers, we got less LRT projects, nobody outside of Alberta is going to want to see Federal politicians waste Federal money (including "our" share on a population basis) on a province hoarding a big juicy pigy bank. We aren't Norway, we are part of Canada, its only fair we share our wealth a bit, get over it.
    Last edited by moahunter; 06-08-2015 at 11:08 AM. Reason: spelling

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    Equalization is based on ability to raise tax dollars per capita. They slowed down because our economy took off, not because we were saving. I'm not denying that Alberta hasn't gotten it's fair share, but that is a separate issue.

    You need to stop blaming the feds and channel your inner Prentice - "look in the mirror". We were more than capable of setting up a responsible taxation and royalty system that would have grown a sustainable trust fund the size of Norway and funded our provincial infrastructure - with or without federal transfers.

    Instead we let plutocrats sell off public resources for pennies in return for buying off average joe Albertan with irresponsibly low tax rates.
    Last edited by Jaerdo; 06-08-2015 at 11:02 AM.

  14. #14

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    Wall is too big for his britches.

    He is premier of Saskatchewan. Fine, that is on the conscience of Saskatchewan voters. But he should stay out of the provincial politics here and out of the national arena.

    He has no right whatever to speak for anyone outside Saskatchewan, except by the presumptuous arrogance of the right wing.

  15. #15

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    Is this thread title intentionally sarcastic?
    Let's make Edmonton better.

  16. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by JayBee View Post
    Is this thread title intentionally sarcastic?
    Sadly no, but it is nauseating. Amazing how much credit Wall gets. Sask was already booming under an NDP government in 2007 when he became premier.

    Amazing how the moment the NDP in Alberta was elected, Wall tried to attract businesses away from Alberta. So much for this great Western Canadian partnership we have. Maybe it only applies to right wing governments in Western Canada. Yeah, he is a real guardian of our interests all right.
    Last edited by River Valley Green; 09-08-2015 at 01:49 AM.

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    Why can't he speak his mind on national views, it is also his job to try and boost his province so trying to attract business is part of his job. It is our premier's job to do likewise.

  18. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by sundance View Post
    Why can't he speak his mind on national views, it is also his job to try and boost his province so trying to attract business is part of his job. It is our premier's job to do likewise.
    I have no problem with that, but let's not pretend then that we're all "buddy buddy" in the west. It's every province for itself and self interest rules. He's not our guardian.

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    Quote Originally Posted by River Valley Green View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by sundance View Post
    Why can't he speak his mind on national views, it is also his job to try and boost his province so trying to attract business is part of his job. It is our premier's job to do likewise.
    I have no problem with that, but let's not pretend then that we're all "buddy buddy" in the west. It's every province for itself and self interest rules. He's not our guardian.
    Yes. As an example, in the 1988 Free Trade election, Quebec was actually a better ally of Alberta's supposed interests than was either Saskatchewan or British Columbia.

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    Regarding equalization: One thing I cuss about almost daily is all the gravel roads here. We have all the tar for asphalt yet 75% of the roads in the province are dusty gravel bumpy roads . Then when I drive down east every dam road is paved. Pi$$es me off.

  21. #21

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    Seems, Ontario won't take it, if it has to give it.

    Interesting about the hydro (see article)



    In the 80s and 90s Alberta still didn't get anything - despite being in a near depression state.

    Oil-price plunge could cost Ontario billions in equalization
    Change to 'have' from 'have-not' status would cost Ontario $2.4B, but poorer provinces gain
    By Kyle Bakx, CBC News Posted: Aug 27, 2015

    "In the last 50 years, Alberta is the only province to not receive any money from the program. Even with its economy in a recession this year, it will not benefit from the program."


    http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/oil-...tion-1.3204437

  22. #22

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    ^good luck getting BC and Quebec to agree to hydro, but yeah, it is inconsistent, especially for Quebec who export much of it. Poor old Ontario, quite the fiscal imbalance they are facing there, all those billions in taxes taken from their citizens, for only a pitance back (not that we get anything back, other than a warm and cozy feeling that we are helping out the rest of Canada). None of the parties will want to make this an election issue (except maybe the Bloc).

  23. #23

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    ^ lol. No, still not voting for that stupid gooftard giving $2 Billion more of our money to his town than mine.

    Time to cry, moagoof.
    Let's make Edmonton better.

  24. #24

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    Note the table in the Wikipedia article below. It shows per capita benefit but not cost. It should read per capital benefit(cost) 2012 with the cost figures shown in brackets like a common standard in financial reporting.

    It would be interesting to look back through the articles history to see if it's been edited to Alberta's detriment.


    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Equa...ents_in_Canada

  25. #25

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    My guess is that Esso stations will be boycotted in Saskatchewan.


    Imperial Oil sells Esso gas stations for $2.8-billion

  26. #26

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    I didn't want to initiate a separate thread, but what do you guys think of Brad Wall's election victory? It seems NDP is struggling to find its right place (no pun intended) on the political spectrum, as its leader in Saskatchewan Cam Broten lost his seat too. And Wall's victory speech was also clearly targeting Alberta NDP:

    Mr. Wall, 50, used his victory speech to pitch potential investors.

    “You can expect low taxes. You can expect royalty stability. You can expect continuity in economic policy,” Mr. Wall said. “You can expect effective but competitive regulations. You can expect a government that’s going to continue to invest in infrastructure. A government that will create the right environment for diversification and for innovation. And you can expect a government that will stand up for Saskatchewan’s interest, every sector of the economy, every time it is challenged.

    “You can expect a government that is proud of oil and gas in this province,” he added, pausing for cheers. “You can expect one that is proud of mining, proud of modern agriculture, proud of crop science.”
    Source: Globe & Mail

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    As he won for his 3rd term I doubt it will make much difference in how Saskatchewan is governed. Manitoba will most like like shift right from NDP to PC as Selinger will likely lose. BC's next election is in 2017 Christy Clark's poll numbers are dropping and might lose, Ontario's next is in 2018 Wynne's numbers are very low but she has 2 years to patch things up.

    It's quite possible most provinces could shift a bit right in the next few years, time will tell.

  28. #28

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    Quote Originally Posted by FamilyMan View Post
    I didn't want to initiate a separate thread, but what do you guys think of Brad Wall's election victory? It seems NDP is struggling to find its right place (no pun intended) on the political spectrum, as its leader in Saskatchewan Cam Broten lost his seat too. And Wall's victory speech was also clearly targeting Alberta NDP:
    NDP are a shambles right now. A group within the federal party is proposing to embrace the Leap manifesto in Edmonton convention (are they crazy?)

    Backers of the radical "Leap Manifesto" have a plan to push their agenda to the forefront of the NDP's convention later this week.

    The manifesto calls for dramatic change, urging a transition away from fossil fuels, a rejection of new pipelines and an upending of the capitalist system on which the economy is based.

    Leading left-wing thinkers released the creed in September in the middle of the election campaign, jolting NDP Leader Tom Mulcair as he attempted to convince Canadians that his party was a moderate alternative to the Conservatives.
    http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/ndp-...tion-1.3519369

    I wonder what the pipefitters union in Alberta thinks about that? Or the Alberta NDP?

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    Sounds to Top_Dawg like a ' Leap Off a Cliff Manifesto '.

  30. #30

    Default Constitutional fight coming

    On the carbon tax, some choice quotes from Premier Wall:


    Wall, on those who say farmers affected by a potential carbon tax can just pass the added expense on down the line. Wall noted that farmers would be hit hard by such a tax, on everything from fertilizer to fuel to dealing with competition on a global scale:

    “You think the Russian or the Belarusians will ever have a $50 carbon tax? They won’t.”

    Wall, on how a high percentage of those who would be impacted by a carbon tax are working in “trade-exposed industries” and rely on global pricing. The federal government has insisted that all money generated from a carbon tax will go right back to the provinces:

    “Then what is the point? It sounds like a bureaucratic merry-go-round.”

    Wall, on using the “considerable talents” of people in the industry to “find ways to clean up energy consumption,” rather than implementing a new tax or shifting carbon around through cap-and-trade:

    “I would argue we’ve been leading the fight … In our province, years ago when the economy was stronger, we chose through SaskPower to make the investment in carbon-mitigation technology.” Wall insisted the billion-dollar Boundary Dam Power Station carbon capture project in Estevan burns coal four times cleaner than natural gas, and 10 times cleaner than other coal plants. “We have been doing that. We’ve led in that, in fact.”
    http://thestarphoenix.com/news/local...n-pricing-plan
    Last edited by moahunter; 12-10-2016 at 12:09 PM.

  31. #31

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    Quote Originally Posted by moahunter View Post
    There is some talk Brad Wall will be a future conservative Federal leader, perhaps even PM. He is certainly, a bit of a Ralph Klein, or Danny Williams, in that he speaks up loud for his province:

    “It is a lot of money to go out in a way that seems to be dated and not always efficient, and infrastructure and tax relief might be an option instead,” Wall said Wednesday.

    The premier said he simply wants a dialogue on changing the federally funded, constitutionally guaranteed program, which sees more than $17 billion a year given to poorer provinces. P.E.I. collects the most in equalization payments — $1,980 per person.

    He touted a specific option in media interviews — taking away half the program’s funding and using it for a combination of infrastructure work and tax cuts.

    “Imagine what 8.5 billion to 9 billion more federal dollars could do in terms of national infrastructure,” he said. “Perhaps Canadians would rather see a split between infrastructure investment and permanent, sustainable tax relief to build the economy.”
    http://news.nationalpost.com/news/ca...brad-wall-says
    You are right - Brad Wall is another great right hope that will never be PM, just like Ralph Klein. I had more respect for Williams principles and style, but also never to be PM. Perhaps fighting with the feds will help shore up Wall's slipping popularity in tough economic times. It sort of worked for some other premiers in the past.

    However, Trudeau has outmaneuvered Wall and he is fairly isolated. Trudeau has the support (or at least not opposition) of most of the larger provinces - at this point I doubt the feds will really pay much attention to what Wall says or does.

  32. #32

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    Wall fails to understand the meaning of "incentive". Put a price on something, and all of a sudden the incentives change. Emitters will look for ways to reduce, and innovators will come up with ways to help. I'm surprised so many conservative types - who hold capitalism as a core tenet - struggle with that so often.
    "Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from religious conviction" - Blaise Pascal

  33. #33

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chmilz View Post
    Wall fails to understand the meaning of "incentive". Put a price on something, and all of a sudden the incentives change. Emitters will look for ways to reduce, and innovators will come up with ways to help. I'm surprised so many conservative types - who hold capitalism as a core tenet - struggle with that so often.
    Nice theory, but it doesn't work when we are the only major commodity producer stupid enough to do this. Try telling a farmer to make the cows fart less, good luck with that one. All this tax means is that their costs will go up / they won't be able to compete anymore with US and Russian farmers - so no reduction in carbon, its just the emissions happen elsewhere, and the money and jobs go elsewhere as well.

    ^^Not that isolated, the Atlantic provinces and Northern Territories, liberal supporters normally, are also deeply opposed. Curious to see how Truedau thinks he can tax some provinces and not others, that's hardly fair.
    Last edited by moahunter; 12-10-2016 at 01:57 PM.

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