Monday, November 18, 2013

Where Is Harper Stashing the Money?

Ten billion dollars a year for three years are unaccounted for.   Now the Parliamentary Budget Officer is canvassing MPs asking if they know where the money is.

The Parliamentary Budget Officer says the government has been unable to [account for], or not spent, about $10 billion that was approved in each of the past three years.

The issue arises again, the PBO says, because the government is asking for an additional $5.4 billion to spend in the latest supplementary estimates and — given the record — it is unclear whether all, or any of it, is required.

Sounds like the Conservative's election war chest should be flush when 2015 rolls around.


Anonymous said...

And while questions are asked, the general population does not seem to give a fuck.

But they will vote the Cons if they get goodies...


Anonymous said...

Yupper! We are running full tilt into oblivion. And if those arshes in government think they are going to get away with the big OBLIVION they are sadly mistaken.

Anonymous said...

So the missing $3.1B is actually peanuts compared to this -- $30B over three years?

Purple library guy said...

I've said it before and I'll say it again. Cons don't believe in governance. If you elect someone to govern who thinks government is by definition worthless, they won't bother to do the work or worry about whether their programs or policies make a lick of sense. They think it doesn't matter so they might as well just do whatever they want, steal as much money as they want, and lie down on the job as much as they want. Actually it's worse than that because they actually see screwups as a positive--a demonstration that their ideology is correct.

All political parties use office to some extent to play politics and reward their friends. But the Cons don't see any other purpose to being in office. Even the Liberals would prefer, all else being equal, that a policy serve the public good in some way. It's not a strong preference and all else is perhaps rarely equal, but somewhere down on their priority list, doing useful things in government has a checkbox. The Conservatives don't think a policy can serve the public good, don't really believe in such a beast as the public good at all, and if it could would actively prefer their policies not serve it; having policies that serve the public invalidates their worldview and weakens their politics.

Cons are screwups by design and ideology.

Owen Gray said...

I know that several cabinet ministers don't have university degrees. But -- given their business bias -- one has to ask, "Is one of them an accountant?"

The Mound of Sound said...

It seems implausible that the federal government could be skimming allocated funding to some alternate purpose, especially at this magnitude.

Maybe they're funneling it to Lockheed.

Owen, it's not the Cons who don't have degrees you should worry about. It's the significant number who never finished high school.

Purple library guy said...

I'm sure some of it went to graft. But I really suspect most of it just . . . wasn't written down properly. It wasn't spent, or it was spent on . . . stuff, but they've basically screwed up departments so bad with their random downsizings and insistence that most of the remaining effort be spent on communication control rather than doing things, that there's no trail saying who got what money and spent it how.

The depressing thing is that the conventional wisdom is so strong that right wing people in suits by definition are super accountants who are ultra careful with money, that this colossal, brobdingnagian, Leviathanesque incompetence will just not register, too dissonant to penetrate. Look at Rob Ford--all scandal aside, his actions point inexorably to one basic fact: The guy is self-evidently a moronic fathead. But, he's a right wing guy and he sometimes wears a suit, so his supporters manage to assume without evidence that somehow despite a brain that would fit in a thimble alongside his sense of responsibility, he must have done good things with the public purse.