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Harper asking Canadians to support his Budget without knowing the details?

According to CAITI Online, the Canadian government is running radio ads pleading with Canadians to phone their MP’s asking them to support the Budget. I haven’t heard these, so I’ll take CAITI’s word for it, but one presumes this is aimed at people who live in a riding occupied by an opposition MP, since I’m sure the Conservative MP’s won’t need any external pressure to do so.

It’s interesting that the Conservatives are doing this (if true). I wouldn’t have been surprised to hear them releasing such ads AFTER the Budget was tabled, but doing it before the release and asking Canadians to do it based on no specifics is interesting strategy. Perhaps, as CAITI suspects, the Conservatives released their deficit figures early yesterday so as to try and convince Canadians that’s how much money they were spending on a stimulus package. I suspect they’re hoping Canadians don’t read the report of the Parliamentary Budget Office, who says we’re going to have a 13 billion $ deficit BEFORE any stimulus package is added into the equation. One wonders if these figures the Conservatives released include that consideration, or if they’re still trying to use Jim Flaherty numbers in claiming there was going to be a small surplus.

Anyhow, the short form version of this is: the Conservatives are asking Canadians to trust them, to have faith in them and their Budget. No need for the details; just help put pressure on your opposition MP to save our necks. I don’t think Canadians are that gullible, so I’m thinking it may be one of these dog-whistle type messages – no one really understands or hears the meaning of the radio ads except their specific supporters. They may be trying to urge their Conservative supporters in opposition MP’s ridings to call in and urge them to support the Budget, in order to give a false sense of popular support for it.

It’s more or less a “freeping” of the opposition MP’s constituency office – rather then mass mob an online poll and vote one way on it to try and show mass support for the answer from their POV, this would be a mass calling in to try and create the impression that the constituents in such and such a riding want the Budget passed. That’s what I suspect is one of the goals here of these ads.

If anyone would offer blind loyal support to a Budget before it even has its details released, Conservative supporters and partisans would surely fit that mould.

[email protected]:05 pm: We’re getting a leakfest of Budget details now, from the previously leak proof Conservative government. So now, I guess we can say Canadians do have some idea of what’s in the Budget, or a selective glance anyhow. As Kady says, why even bother having a pre-Budget lockup and embargo, when everything’s being leaked?


9 comments to Harper asking Canadians to support his Budget without knowing the details?

  • Roll Tide


    Government overtaxes and overspends. Harper knows this, but is too much of a pragmatist to do anything about it. He is being liberal-lite, politically wise, but economically bad. I only wish most Canadians are as spending hawkish as Mike, but I am afraid that the Liberal media has brainwashed most of the population into believing that the Government is the big Sugar Daddy solution for everything.

  • Roll Tide,

    I personally agree that spending won’t work, but Harper isn’t being sucked into anything. After complaining about the free spending Liberals, his first budget raised spending by 8%. Think about that. 8% above the previous budget. The previous budget that Jack Layton re-wrote for Paul Martin. Last year, they increased it again, another 8-10%. don’t believe me? Ask Andrew Coyne….

    All while slashing taxes. Destroying the surpluses in process so there was no cushion, no wiggle room in the event of a downturn.

    This deficit is entirely created by Harper and Deficit Jim Flaherty’s fiscal mismanagement since 2006. His deficit, he wears it. This has nothing to do with the opposition. This is all Conservative.

    Suck on it.

  • Roll Tide

    Harper is getting sucked into the spending trap. It will not work.

  • We get them up here in Ottawa on Live 88.5, our alternative station – both own by Corus right?

    I think we have the answer.

  • HEard it a few times on 102.1 as well.

    The part of me that isn’t fuming was laughing at Harpocrisy of them telling people to tell MP’s to do their job, which to me is voting on bills based on what they think is best for their constituency, and then telling them to tell their MP’s to vote for the Budget which could go directly against what their “job” is

  • Kinski

    C’mon KOL we all know who’s paying for these ads. We are. The tories love to use our money for their propaganda while in power.

  • KOL


    Your post is ambiguous on one point: Who is paying for these ads, the Canadian government or the Conservative Party?

  • I’ve been hearing the ads for approximately a week now. Only on Toronto radio stations however and most frequently on 102.1 The Edge.

    And yes, they essentially ask Canadians to show support for the budget without any details as to what is in the budget. It goes along with the Cons leaking the total debt to incurred in an attempt to make everything they announce on the 27th sound amazing in comparison.

    It definitely doesn’t make one feel easy about what they’re planning to announce. I’m looking towards lots of forced sacrifices on others without any sacrifices on their part – smaller cabinet, reduced operating budgets, etc.

  • Frankly Canadian

    I find the circumstances surrounding this budget to be quit concerning, sixty four billion dollars over two years, and an increase of thirteen billion dollars spent on the daily operations of this government? I question if that amount will have any substantial long term benefit to our Canadian economy, or will this just be an exercise of futility. This type of spending over five years brings us to the same type of debt load we had almost a decade ago? The Conservatives have done very little to enhance Canadian investments and in fact with the income trust fiasco, have in my opinion done more to hurt our economy during the last three years. I’m not sure that the thirteen billion dollar increase isn’t because of their mismanagement, and that the remaining twenty one billion will only go to more public announcements and political posturing that have little or no action. Since the economic statement and the proroguing of the house, all they have been doing seems to be related to the publics perception, that they are consulting with all the right people who will advise us properly the way through this mess. If I remember correctly, during the election campaign last September, Mr. Dion was criticized by Mr. Harper that the only plan or strategy he had was to consult with business leaders and provincial leaders to make a plan, that was four long months ago. What has Mr. Harper been doing for the last four weeks?, exactly what he was criticizing Mr. Dion for suggesting. I don’t know but more and more I’m feeling that Mr. Harper has not only lost the confidence of the house, but also my confidence as well.

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