Harper Conservatives = less choice, more government

The latest atrocity committed by this increasingly authoritarian government is Bill C-51. It amends the Canada Health Act to bring natural “medicines” under the same regulatory regime as drugs. In other words, herbs which people have used for centuries, and are available for next to no cost compared to drugs, now will be subjprect to clinical trials and government approval before they can be promoted for therapeutic purposes.

Before you think for a minute that this may be a good thing, consider that there can be no patents on such items and therefore no incentive for any company to pay for such trials. Therefore, this measure effectively denies Canadians the freedom to choose natural therapies by denying them information about such possible uses.

I am not into natural remedies. Occasionally using echenasia to ward of a cold is probably the extent of it for me. But I am into choice, freedom and reducing government intrusion. The Conservative government is into force, regulations and increasing government intrusiveness. This is all consistent with the CRTC”s recent signal of its intention to wage war against the relatively unregulated Internet.

So, this may be the final straw for me. I have said I would support the Conservatives for so long as they were moving Canada toward greater freedom and less government. I don”t believe that is true. I am fully aware that defeating the Conservatives means electing a party which is even worse (Liberal or NDP). However, it would be worse to perpetuate the hoax that the Conservatives are the defenders of freedom, liberty and individual rights while they are nothing more than political opportunists. If they believe the quest for Liberal voters is more important than holding onto the support of those who value freedom and democracy than that”s their choice. My choice, one I am still allowed to make, is to withdraw my support.

Another gutless Conservative government

In the 1980s Brian Mulroney presided over enormous increases in government spending and taxation. The national debt ballooned as each year”s deficit was piled onto the one before it. Only when the Liberals came to power did this change.

But the Liberals deserved absolutely no credit. It simply wasn’t possible to spend any more or raise taxes any higher – the Mulroney Tories had maxed out both these options. The Liberals did what they do best. They jettisoned their usual tax and spend predisposition to steal the thunder from their only effective political opponents – the Reform Party.

The fiscal mismanagement of the Mulroney Conservatives created the need for the Reform Party whose credible threat to the Liberals then forced them to make what progress they did in cleaning up the mess.

Now, after years of balanced budgets and even some very modest tax cuts, Canadians still find themselves the most overtaxed people in the developed world. Why? Because we have another gutless Conservative government.

Now this pejorative is intended as a double-entendre denoting cowardice while also alluding to the practice that could create the fiscal freedom to indulge in tax reductions – broadly and deeply. That is, by “gutting” the many and varied wasteful government programs that simply rob the tax payer to pander to special interest groups.

The recent auditor general”s report details overspending on the fisheries, the gun registry, computer equipment and infrastructure grants and many other items. Here”s one particularly egregious example. Almost half a billion dollars was spend last year on foster homes for 8,000 Native children on reserves. That”s $56,000 per child with no accounting for how the money was used or whether the children were any better of as a result. Sounds to me like an excuse to funnel more money and/or power to Native elites. Who else determines where this money goes?

How about the 41,000 illegal immigrants who have been already ordered deported from the country but whose whereabouts are unknown? Why are we spending money on a system to screen immigrants when those who fail to meet the test stay here anyway? Why not save ourselves the money and scrap the whole thing?

Because gutting wasteful programs creates political enemies and doing that takes guts. From its actions to date it looks like we have just one more gutless Conservative government.

A real conservative government?

Real conservatism has arrived.That was the point of the decade-long Reform/PC schism culminating in the Alliance and the alliance between the Alliance and the PCs – the Conservative Party of Canada. All of it was to take the “progressive” (read: leftist) tendencies out of Canada”s conservative party. So the ballots have been counted and the results are in and now finally Canada has a truly conservative government.

Ok, prove it.

Canadians are still among the highest taxed people in all the industrial nations. Despite the government”s minority status its opposition is so timid it”s disgusting. The CPC has and can continue to govern like it has a majority. If it falls it will be re-elected, possibly even with a majority, but if with a minority, so what?

What should the government do with this power? A real conservative government of an overtaxed people would think of doing nothing before dramatically reducing taxes. The means of doing so is suggested in this article.

Taxation is robbery

“All taxation is a loss per se. It is the sacred duty of the government to take only from the people what is necessary to the proper discharge of the public service; and that taxation in any other mode, is simply in one shape or another, legalized robbery.”

Who was the raving lunatic libertarian to speak such nonsense? How about Robert Cartwright, Canada”s first Liberal minister of finance. (Back then Liberals were true liberals.)

If it is wrong for me to take money from my neighbour without his consent no matter how good my intentions are for using that money, how can I authorize politicians to do so simply by making an “X” in a box on election day? I can”t delegate an authority I don”t have. And no matter how many people join my gang, and no matter what my gang calls itself, if it takes my neighbour”s money without his consent, it”s theft pure and simple. Calling the gang “the government” doesn’t change a thing – taxation is theft – legalized robbery.

Libertarian Party of Canada

I attended a LPC convention in Toronto in the mid 80s and I was thoroughly impressed by the caliber of the delegates from across the country. I was impressed that these were intelligent and principled individuals pursuing the highest political ideal in the way they believed best.
I worked for the LPC (I even ran in the 1988 election as a Libertarian) until 1990 when I met Preston Manning. After hearing him speak I asked Mr. Manning if there was room in his party for a libertarian. He answered that he believed the economic principles upon which the Reform Party was based were essentially libertarian. He said he thought of the Reform Party as a broad political coalition of libertarians, conservatives and political reformers with sufficient common ground to allow us to work together effectively.

I was, and remain, persuaded by the argument that it is better to accomplish some of our objectives in alliance with others than to remain isolated and accomplish little or nothing. I joined the Reform Party and continue to actively support its successor, the Conservative Party. I will do so as long as it appears that implementing its platform will make Canada more libertarian than it is.

So, I believe the LPC is a great bunch of people doing what they believe is best. But I wish they would add their considerable talents and intellects to the CPC.

I do not believe there is any utility in the term “libertarian conservative”. If you mean “libertarian Conservative”, to refer to a libertarian who is a member of the CPC then I can see it, but not without the upper case “C”. If it means a social conservative who supports libertarian economics I think the label “conservative” is adequate. I believe the unmodified label “libertarian” implies support for the general application of the libertarian principle which would exclude the coercive social policies usually supported by social conservatives.