- Globe and Mail
Some months ago I was encouraged to return to federal politics. I succumbed. Big mistake.
Yesterday I corrected that, and am returning my Liberal decoder ring. In fact, itâ€™s fair to say my experiences in politics over the past four years have reminded me why 97% of Canadians do not belong to a party.
My motivation for dallying with MPship again was similar to my desire to maintain this conversation with you. The times are uncertain. Questionable decisions have been made. The consequences will be long-lasting. We should elect people driven to solve problems, not just attracted to power.
To date, no party or leader has treated you honestly to an explanation of what a $56 billion deficit or $600 billion debt mean for your family or your finances. Suggesting thereâ€™ll be no tax hikes, spending cuts or mortgage increases is akin to Stephen Harper telling us one year ago Canada was immune to recession and our budget would stay balanced. Itâ€™s crap. But apparently crap that people like hearing.
Such talk has surely not endeared me to the new Liberal leader. Canâ€™t say Iâ€™m surprised. But neither can I stay.
Iâ€™m too old and crusty to cave now.
Statement by Garth Turner
After being recruited to run for MP in the Ontario riding of Dufferin-Caledon, and having my candidacy approved by the Liberal Party last July, today I informed the leader of my resignation.
My hope in returning to Parliament was to help clear the path to a viable economic future. Stephen Harperâ€™s $56 billion deficit and profligate spending are massive threats. But also threatening is a lack of debate about viable options and an honest conversation with voters and citizens on the looming consequences.
Therefore itâ€™s hard to see what the coming election will be about if weâ€™re not prepared to discuss the options in the wake of the Harper fiscal disaster. Economic growth alone wonâ€™t wipe out an historic debt load or the need for spending cuts and tax hikes. The looming HST in Ontario and BC is likely but a taste of medicine to come. This is what Canadians need to understand.
A year ago Stephen Harper said there would be no recession and no deficit. That was untrue. Now he says there will be no consequences of our record shortfall. Also untrue.
In my financial books and writings Iâ€™ve warned of the need for families to invest wisely, use debt carefully and live within their means in an uncertain world. Rather than tell voters interest rates and taxes wonâ€™t rise nor spending fall, leaders should guide us all into realistic choices. Sadly, that doesnâ€™t win elections.
In Dufferin-Caledon I have been the only nominee for MP candidate since August. Iâ€™m interpreting the leaderâ€™s failure to allow a nomination meeting as a signal my views are unwelcome.
Garth takes a political pass in his own words. Here.