Eve of the ‘Recession Budget’

Cold.

A stroll along the streets around Parliament Hill is an experience in cold, biting, Canadian winter nights.  Such a stroll along the empty, well salted sidewalks and streets of our capital does not reflect the anticipation of those of us engaged in the budget/stimulus package unveiling tomorrow.

Sure, the Tories steady leaks and announcements over the last week have stolen some thunder from the budget. Give these guys credit, they push aside all budget secrecy procedures just as easily as they were firm, just months ago, in saying the Canadian economy was not that bad.

Both hushed and loud  conversation over dinner in nearby historic Byward Market all seemed to bounce back to the budget announcement coming tomorrow (Jan. 27). People are afraid, that can be easily heard. Everywhere you turn your ear it seems you are hearing someone talk about someone who has lost their job already…scary thought, since the worst is yet to come.

That budget tomorrow is not just about investment, tax cuts and numbers, it is about talking to the Canadian people and assuring them  and demonstrating that their government has a plan. It is about restoring ‘consumer confidence’, it should be about protecting the vulnerable.

Shame on the NDP and Bloc for still playing up that silly coalition rhetoric. The Liberals need to do what is right for all Canadians and there is nothing in the recent leaks, from $7 billion to infrastructure to $1.5 billion in training funds, that warrant bringing us crashing down into an election.

This budget needs to be like the warmth that welcomes you, in the hazy yellow tinged light of a hotel lobby, after a quiet cold stroll in the capital on a blissfully cold and unforgiving Canadian night.

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