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  1. #1
    Senior Member RangeBob's Avatar
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    GUNTER: It looks like 'screw the west' is back in full swing

    Oct 16 2019

    It’s 1980 all over again.

    In the federal election that year (the election that returned Pierre Trudeau to power after Joe Clark’s brief national recess), the unofficial motto of the Liberal war room was “Screw the west, we’ll take the rest!”

    Given the anti-Alberta, anti-oil rhetoric of the past week from Pierre’s son, Justin, it’s easy to imagine the current Liberals have decided to write off Alberta and most of the rest of the west (Manitoba, Saskatchewan and the interior of B.C.) in favour of pandering to voters in Quebec, the Greater Toronto Area and Vancouver in hopes of clinging on to at least a minority.

    Back in 1980, the Liberals adopted policies that deliberately targeted the western provinces and their emerging economic power because they knew such policies would be popular in the more heavily populated provinces of Ontario and Quebec. And central Canada still contained enough seats to give Pierre Trudeau his third majority even if the four western provinces didn’t elect a single Grit.

    As it was, of the 77 seats in the West in 1980, just two went Liberal (both in Manitoba). The Conservatives won 49 and the NDP 26.

    Trudeau 1.0 restored a Liberal majority even though he and his party willfully screwed the west. What followed was the National Energy Program that devastated the west’s economy for nearly a decade.

    Now, judging by his words in the past week, Trudeau 2.0 is getting set to make the west, especially Alberta, Confederation’s pariah in hopes of holding on to power, even just a minority.

    In the first round of last week’s French-language leaders’ debate, Trudeau promised to “stand up to oil interests.” He clearly meant Alberta’s new UCP government, it’s energy information war room, and any oil company or consortium that tries to revive a pipeline from the west, through Quebec, to Atlantic Canada.

    The Liberals killed Energy East two years ago because it was unpopular in Quebec. Now, with the anti-oil Bloc Quebecois breathing down their necks in this election, the Liberals are signalling they are prepared to quash any attempt to resurrect Energy East or a similar pipeline.

    Liberal candidates have gone even further than their leader. Some have tweeted about Andrew Scheer’s ties to “dark oil money” and many more have pledged to do what they can to stop new pipelines.

    Of course, in the last Parliamentary session before the election call, the Trudeau government also passed Bills C-48 and C-69. The first was a direct attempt to stop Alberta oil from being shipped to world markets from B.C.’s northern coast, while the second made environmental assessment so severe future pipelines will be next to impossible.

    Unlike 1980, it would be difficult for the Liberals to win a majority without significant western support. The West had just over 25% of the seats in the House of Commons 40 years ago. Today it has nearly 30%.

    But is it so farfetched to think a re-elected Liberal government, particularly a minority one being held in office by the ultra-“green” NDP, Bloc or Greens would axe Trans Mountain to save its own political skin? If cancelling Trans Mountain meant the Libs could retain power, they’d jettison the project in a heartbeat, even though they own the pipeline and grossly overpaid for it about 18 months ago. (That was your money, not theirs. They don’t care.)

    What about national unity, though? Can picking on one province for partisan gain really be healthy for Confederation?

    I’m not going to threaten that Alberta will leave if central Canada, Vancouver and the Atlantic provinces foist Trudeau on the country again. But the anger and resentment created by his attacks on Alberta will not go away (or even subside) after next Monday’s vote.

    hxxps://torontosun.com/opinion/columnists/gunter-it-looks-like-screw-the-west-is-back-in-full-swing


    Lorne Gunter: Western separatism hangs on Scheer's ability to win enough seats | Ezra Levant
    Oct 17 2019, 8 minutes
    Harper always answered the first question in French, as if to say "you may hate me, but I don't hate you." Harper tried to bring the country together, continuously in several ways. Justin isn't doing that at all.

    http://y2u.be/Oyl1kI8e0N4

  2. #2
    Senior Member RangeBob's Avatar
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    comment at rebel link
    https://www.rebelnews.com/lorne_gunt...s_enough_seats

    Andrew Stephenson commented 2019-10-18 00:49:01 -0400 · Flag
    “Not true. Pipelines that must cross provincial borders is federal jurisdiction. The federal government does have the authority to order the province/territory to allow the construction of the pipeline.”

    It’s a solution to a provincial problem, not a national one. Alberta’s the biggest beneficiary to pipelines, by far.

    Andrew also said, “What benefit does Quebec gain from letting pipelines through?”

    Where do you think the $14 billion in provincial equalization that comes from Alberta and goes to Quebec each year is generated?"

    It’s a misconception that it comes from Alberta. Equalization comes from general revenues, which is to say that pay-in is roughly comparable to the share of national GDP. The lion’s share, around 40%, is actually from Ontario. Only 16%, or 2.5 billion, is from Alberta. This is actually a smaller number than Quebec’s provincial budget surplus last year.

    In fact, the 14b is a gross, not a net number. Quebec actually contributes more to its own equalization, than Alberta does.

    “It is from the royalties on the oil the province charges the oil companies. So for Quebec to allow the pipeline to go through to the New Brunswick refinery, the royalty taxed on the oil extracted funds the Provincial Equalization program. In addition, the fuel refined from the oil will likely be sold cheaper to Canadians than the OPEC oil that is currently imported by Quebec, so they would also save money.”

    Royalties are about a dollar a barrel at $60 for WTI. let’s say a pipeline carries 500kbpd to the East. That’s an added 180m to Alberta. Let’s say a full sixth of that goes to Quebec (about the current rate, more or less). That’s a whopping 30m a year, or four dollars per person. You can see why they might be skeptical. "

    “Andrew then concludes with, “If you want to matter on the national stage, stop always voting for the same party.”

    The implication of that statement is pure conjecture. You draw a conclusion for which you do not provide support."

    Yes, it is, but one based in several media articles (e.g. the Globe a few days ago) decrying the absence of Federal leaders in Alberta (as in, you could just about count their visits, combined, on one hand). One reason for this is that if you’re expecting a Conservative sweep of the province, the CPC takes it for granted, the Libs write it off, and everyone goes campaigning in Vancouver, where the races are closer. They all need to win seats there, so the platforms get tailored to what Burnaby might want, not what Fort Mac might – as we know they’re diametrically opposed.

  3. #3
    Senior Member M1917 Enfield's Avatar
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    According to the most recent numbers from Statistics Canada (https://www150.statcan.gc.ca/t1/tbl1...pid=3610045001), Albertans sent $49 billion worth of taxes to Ottawa in 2016, but only received $27.2 billion back in the form of federal spending.

    This equates to a “gap” of $21.8 billion. On average, it means that, in 2016, every Albertan paid $5,265 more into Confederation than they get back.

    It’s the largest single “gap” of any province. Ontario ranks in second place as a net contributor to Canada, but its “gap” is only $9 billion. Alberta’s chief enemy right now, B.C., also has a net loss in federal spending, although it was just $4.2 billion in 2016.

    Meanwhile, for most provinces the math is the other way around.

    In 2016, Newfoundland and Labrador received $1.4 billion more from the federal government than they paid in. Manitoba received a $4.2 billion “surplus” in federal spending. And in first place, of course, is Quebec. In 2016, La Belle Province received $16 billion more from federal coffers than they paid in federal taxes.

    The $50.3 billion in total federal taxes paid by Quebec, in fact, are almost identical to the $49 billion paid by Alberta. But Quebec received $66.4 billion in federal expenditures in 2016 — 244 per cent more than the federal monies poured into Alberta in the same period.
    I live among lots of sheeple and dim witted who like to think they are good Canadians for voting Lieberal

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  5. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by M1917 Enfield View Post
    According to the most recent numbers from Statistics Canada (https://www150.statcan.gc.ca/t1/tbl1...pid=3610045001), Albertans sent $49 billion worth of taxes to Ottawa in 2016, but only received $27.2 billion back in the form of federal spending.

    This equates to a “gap” of $21.8 billion. On average, it means that, in 2016, every Albertan paid $5,265 more into Confederation than they get back.

    It’s the largest single “gap” of any province. Ontario ranks in second place as a net contributor to Canada, but its “gap” is only $9 billion. Alberta’s chief enemy right now, B.C., also has a net loss in federal spending, although it was just $4.2 billion in 2016.

    Meanwhile, for most provinces the math is the other way around.

    In 2016, Newfoundland and Labrador received $1.4 billion more from the federal government than they paid in. Manitoba received a $4.2 billion “surplus” in federal spending. And in first place, of course, is Quebec. In 2016, La Belle Province received $16 billion more from federal coffers than they paid in federal taxes.

    The $50.3 billion in total federal taxes paid by Quebec, in fact, are almost identical to the $49 billion paid by Alberta. But Quebec received $66.4 billion in federal expenditures in 2016 — 244 per cent more than the federal monies poured into Alberta in the same period.
    This is a nice summary of the issue. Transfer payments get a lot of press and for valid reason. They are a part of the problem. But the issue is much more broad than that and spans all aspects of the economic relationships between the provinces, the federal government, and the tax structures of the country.

    However these number do highlight the net effect. Balance and fairness are not concepts inherent to our system.
    WEXIT

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