Federal budget

The federal budget was presented on April 21 by the finance minister.

The federal budget was presented on April 21 by the finance minister who, in keeping with tradition, had purchased a new pair of shoes the previous day.

Just as well he chose a pair of black New Balance sneakers with Tory-blue laces, as he needed to do some fancy footwork in proudly proclaiming that his budget was really balanced. Essentially he moved a couple billion bucks from the emergency contingency fund into general revenue — equivalent of moving almost everything from your savings account into your credit card or chequing account. Those who are completely deaf, dumb, blind and stupid may believe all the balanced budget ballyhoo from Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s government, but those of us not so afflicted can see through it like a pane of glass.

The Tories want it to sound like the opening of the nursery rhyme “Little Boy Blue come blow your horn,” but in reality it’s the closing of another nursery rhyme: “Ring Around the Roses… ashes, ashes, we all fall down”  —  meaning we are all getting burned again.

The budget didn’t mention aid to help save the lives of refugees fleeing by sea from Libya; apparently the Harper government doesn’t care for anything as picayune as floating death traps. They spent about $347 million on the NATO bombing campaign to ouster General Gaddafi in 2011 and another $850,000 for the self-congratulatory mission-accomplished-type fly past for the prime minister, governor-general, their spouses and other Ottawa bigwigs grinning ear-to-ear like conquering heroes. Of course, what NATO really accomplished was to leave a badly broken country with no government, rife for terrorist groups like ISIS to take over, and no rules and regulations in ports, etc. Libya is fertile ground for all types of corruption and skulduggery, not least the human-trafficking to Europe; every day more and more African refugees tragically drown en route to Italy.

NATO members, including Canada, who smashed the country into pieces with its bombs, should definitely be cleaning up the mess and chaos left behind. They should start with urgently doing something for those who risk their lives sailing in overloaded and unseaworthy vessels from its lawless ports, desperately seeking a better life in Europe.

To paraphrase the closing lines of “Humpty Dumpty“ — all the NATO horses and all the NATO men, should try and put Libya back together again.

Bernie SmithParksville

Just Posted

(File photo)
The Parksville Civic and Technology Centre at 100 Jensen Ave. (PQB News file photo)
Parksville 2020 annual report now ready for public feedback

Documents can be viewed online; comments or questions to be submitted before noon on July 5, 2021

FILE – Perry Bellegarde, National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations, takes part in an event on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, July 7, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Indigenous Peoples Day must be a ‘call to action’, says Assembly of First Nations chief

Discovery of children at Kamloops residential school site must lead to change, Perry Bellegarde says

A Lotto 6/49 ticket purchased in Parksville for the June 19, 2021 draw is a $3M winner. (Submitted photo)
Winning Lotto 6/49 ticket worth $3M purchased in Parksville

Lottery prize winners have 52 weeks to claim jackpot

The border crossing into the United States is seen during the COVID-19 pandemic in Lacolle, Que. on February 12, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
VIDEO: Border quarantine to soon lift for fully vaccinated Canadians

Eligible travellers must still take multiple COVID-19 tests

Chilliwack secondary school’s principal is apologizing after a quote equating graduation with the end of slavery in the U.S. was included in the 2020-2021 yearbook. (Screenshot from submitted SnapChat)
B.C. student’s yearbook quote equates grad to end of slavery; principal cites editing error

Black former student ‘disgusted’ as CSS principal apologizes for what is called an editing error

Skeena MLA Ellis Ross. (Photo by Peter Versteege)
BC Liberal leadership candidate condemns ‘senseless violence’ of Okanagan church fires

Skeena MLA Ellis Ross says reconciliation isn’t about revenge for past tragedies

A coroner’s inquest will be taking place at the Capitol Theatre in Port Alberni for the next week. (ELENA RARDON / ALBERNI VALLEY NEWS)
Teen B.C. mom who died following police custody recalled as ‘friend to many’

Police sent Jocelyn George to hospital after intoxication had gone ‘beyond the realm’ of normal detox

FILE - In this Nov. 29, 2020, file photo, Las Vegas Raiders defensive end Carl Nassib leaves the field after an NFL football game against the Atlanta Falcons in Atlanta. Nassib on Monday, June 21, 2021, became the first active NFL player to come out as gay. Nassib announced the news on Instagram, saying he was not doing it for the attention but because “I just think that representation and visibility are so important.” (AP Photo/John Bazemore, File)
Nassib becomes first active NFL player to come out as gay

More than a dozen NFL players have come out as gay after their careers were over

Penticton Indian Band Chief Greg Gabriel speaks to the Sacred Hearts Catholic Church burning down early Monday morning, June 21, 2021. (Monique Tamminga Western News)
Penticton band chief condemns suspicious burning of 2 Catholic churches

Both Catholic church fires are deemed suspicious, says RCMP

COVID-19 daily cases reported to B.C. public health, seven-day moving average to June 17, 2021. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C.’s COVID-19 infections drop to 90 on Sunday, 45 Monday

Pandemic spread dwindles as 77% of adults receive vaccine

Emergency vehicles are parked outside of the Wintergreen Apartments on Fourth Avenue. (SUSAN QUINN / Alberni Valley News)
Port Alberni RCMP investigate stabbing on Fourth Avenue

Two men were found with ‘significant’ injuries near Wintergreen Apartments

By protesting uninvited in First Nations’ territories, conservationists are acting in a neocolonial or paternalistic manner, says Huu-ay-aht Chief Robert Dennis. Photo by Heather Thomson
A closer look: do Vancouver Island First Nations support the war in the woods?

First Nations/environmentalist old growth alliance uneasy, if it exists at all

Most Read