Thursday, May 28, 2009

All the Bad Things I've Ever Thought About Conservatives

All of them are coming through.

I've always believed that Conservatives create deficits in order to force austerity on the population, reduce services and get people to expect less for their taxes. The goal is to get poor and middle class people to hate taxes as much as the rich do, even though poor and middle class generally benefit from our level of taxation.

And while they're doing this - racking up record deficits - they sell off public institutions to make the budget appear balanced while ensuring future austerity via a lack of public assets.

As well, I've understood the strategy of mismanaging public institutions on purpose in order to denigrate them. Remember Mike Harris and his Tories in Ontario, slowly destroying our public education system and health care system so that they could shrug their shoulder and say, "What do you expect from government? Government sucks. Let's do private schools instead."

And now we see this happening in our federal government.

You remember that reactor that produces medical isotopes for the entire world? The one run by AECL? The one whose shutdown they blamed on "Liberal appointee" Linda Keen, whom they subsequently fire?

Well, the Conservatives are in charge now, having ordered the reactor activated over the safety concerns of the people charged with protecting our health. And the reactor is, as one would expect, malfunctioning and shut down with no prospect of a quick turn around.

So what's the Conservative solution?

Let's sell the reactor to a private organization

I kid you not. Put the world's major source of medical isotopes in the hands of the profit-driven private sector. Give a private company a virtual monopoly on our health. Claim the sale price against the deficit so it doesn't look so bad. Hide the perpetual cost of this move in the distant future of rising health care costs.

It accomplishes everything the Conservatives could ever want: rising deficit; austerity measures; weakening public institutions; private profit. Some things just never, ever change.

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