Is a treaty or a promise made by a government, binding on successive governments?
Apparently, the Liberals don't think so -- Paul Martin's Liberals, who ran on a promise to scrap NAFTA, are now worried about Stephen Harper's commitment to scrap Kyoto -- because he's concerned about Canada's world image. The fact that Martin and the Liberals reneged on this election promise is irrelevant. He believed that deals signed under a previous government were open to renegotiation or reversal -- decisions made by governments are not written in stone.
Paul Martin was also part of the team that promised to scrap a the previous government's helicopter deal -- the cancellation penalty of $500,000,000 was taken from the military budget -- not general revenue. Taxpayers will have to pay the increased cost for replacement helicopters, which still haven't been delivered despite the Sea Kings being 13 years older and more decrepit than they were back then. Martin felt no obligation to honour an existing contract then -- even when it was financially imprudent to cancel.
The same Party that tore up the agreement for an essential tool for our military is bleating that the Conservatives will scrap a daycare scheme which will cost billions of dollars and benefit less than 20% of children.
The interesting thing about the Liberal plan is that it is modelled on the Quebec $7/day daycare plan(which costs considerably more than $7/day to run) -- but while the Liberals have said they will create more spaces, I haven't heard anything about it being more affordable (like the Quebec $7/day plan) Could it be that they didn't negotiate this part of the plan with the provinces -- so they have no idea how much parents will be charged?
The big red book of doom says that the essential principles of their daycare scheme are QUAD principles 'Quality, Universally inclusive, Accessible and Developmental'. So the 'A' doesn't stand for affordable. Some plan. They're transferringg money to the provinces and calling it a child care plan. At least with the Conservative policy, Quebeckers will only have to fork over $10 a week for their full-time childcare arrangements instead of $35, because they'll get the other $25 directly from Ottawa under Harper. With Martin's plan, who exactly is better off except maybe bureaucrats and daycare workers who will now be under the government employee umbrella?
Martin scarcely keeps his own promises, and even those he has kept are not kept in a timely fashion. Yet, he blusters about Stephen Harper's plans and pretends that Harper's decision to follow the Conservative's platform, rather than maintaining the status quo and enacting all of Martin's plans, is shocking.
Paul Martin is so arrogant as to think a Liberal signature renders something holy and untouchable.
His habit of keeping most of the wrong promises and breaking most of the right ones makes his indignant act even more comical.
However this week turns out, I can't wait until it's over.