Survival advice for the NDP

To the Editor:

Although very few politicians view the Bible as a valid guide, it appears the NDP have secretly taken some advice from its pages. I would like to direct your attention to Luke chapter 16 where we find the story of a property manager who, when he knew that he was about to be fired for wasting money, devised a shrewd survival plan. He reasoned that if he used siphoned off company money to make personal friends of the company clients, these friendships could serve him well in the future. In fact, the plan was so brilliant the even his boss commended him just before he fired him. The parallel is uncanny. Even the UCP might not be able to thwart this shrewd survival plan. Here it is in a nutshell. Using public money to buy the friendship of voters will serve well in the future. No one does this better than the NDP. By providing essentially free college education they are making friends of students just as they become new voters. Building more schools and eliminating extra fees is making friends of parents. Free child care and extended paid maternity / paternity leave is making friends of young parents. Building more hospitals and expanding free medical coverage is befriending voters from all walks of life, especially retirees. There are always roads, bridges and other infrastructures that need rebuilding so increasing the friendship of both the builders and the users will sit well in the future. By reducing and writing off business taxes they could make even more friends of entrepreneurs (just don’t appear too cozy with big business). There is still room for more civil servant jobs (positions), along with better salaries and pension plans which will ultimately guarantee continuing friendships. In fact you have an advantage that our Biblical manager did not have - you can borrow money in the name of the voters and thus use their money to buy their friendship and loyalty.

Payback time has only a slight downside as it can be easily managed to your advantage. Following the next election the next government will be in an impossible situation. Paying off the inherited debt - currently about 10 billion - that’s over $2000 for every man, woman and child - and balancing the budget without bankrupting the province will necessitate cutbacks that will leave the next government with very few friends among voters. So here is some advice for the NDP. You can begin now by praying (a novel thought) for an NDP defeat at the next election. A UCP victory would, instead of forcing you to pay the piper, allow you to sit across the floor and heckle the government for all their cutbacks and tax increases. So in the name of long term survival, continue what you are doing, use what time you have to buy all the friends you can by using their own money [and debt]. If you lose the next election all blame will be passed to another and you will thus thwart a permanent demise. If not, your plan will at least provide a cushy retirement. So, given the short memory and even shorter vision of voters, this “inspired” advice might just work. It worked 2000 years ago, it has worked in other provinces, and will likely work again.

Cecil Cowie

Three Hills