Starbucks epiphany

How one blogger saw my last political triumph.

Adrift in downtown Toronto, aloof and homeless in the canyons of the financial district, I found myself pushed by the crowd into a Starbucks. The promised land. Wi-fi.

As I sat amid the crumbs of a long-forgotten Cranberry-lemon-tofu muffin and updated comments to this blog, I was joined by a familiar face from my dark past. “Hey,” he said, and sat. It was one of the brightest star economists in the canyon’s monetary and fiscal firmament. He had come to talk politics.

“Heard you might be running again,” he barked over his fair trade decaf, as a toothless street person eyed him hungrily. “Mebbe,” I said. “It’s a thing I have for lost causes.’

Actually I reflected on how many people have told me I’m a fool for even considering a challenge in the next election – whenever that might be (and it looks closer). Former advisors, reporters, many old model-girlfriends, they all ask why I would even consider running when most Canadians are apathetic, when half of them no longer vote and when I live in a constituency so Conservative the victorious Tory MP spent less money on campaigning than the poor Green guy.

But I’ve heard this before. Hell, I once ran against Kim Campbell to be prime minister (that worked out well). And I’d probably still be an MP if I’d ever learn to shut up and kiss butt. Instead, I decided to make it clear to my political masters that I worked for the people first, and them second, and had no intention of going to Ottawa to be silent. That worked out well, too.

So why would I do this again – and in a riding where the existing MP demolished his nearest opponent with a 15,000 vote tsunami?

The simple answer is, the right thing to do is not always the easy thing. Standing up for principle isn’t a matter of a win or a loss.  If that’s the only motivation for a political career, you don’t deserve one.

You may know I’m not happy with the direction of the country’s finances. I worry about the long-term and harsh consequences of expedient actions being taken today. I’m concerned we’re diving into debt without a rescue line to get out – no roadmap for the coming years. I’ve warned here about the consequences on families of the higher rates and stiffer taxes which will arrive. My feeling is the current political class cares more about avoiding a depression on their watch than preventing one in the future.

Equally, I’m saddened at the lack of attention being given to a looming retirement crisis. Nobody can live on the CPP. Corporate pensions are disappearing and others face a funding crisis. Personal savings rates have cratered and governments are doing nothing that I can see to address this. Even calling a national retirement conference or appointing an investigative body would be a start. Strikes me that we need a ministry of long-term thinking, and less concern about building prisons in Kandahar.

Of course, we have a demographic wave to deal with as the biggest population group gets set to rearrange the economy. And what of the economic impacts of H1N1, or climate change? Until you understand some basics like the disintegration of the American empire, peak oil, the looming global food shortage or the dangers of an unbridled and unregulated OTC derivatives market, you probably don’t deserve to be running a country.

But all votes are personal. All elections are local. They’re about the people casting ballots. For them, the choice of an MP or a PM is about jobs, houses, incomes and security. And that’s exactly why they should, and do, care about more than we give them credit for. An enlightened government would allow families to income split, restore assets like income trusts, reduce tax on incomes and shift it lightly to consumption, use tax incentives to start a personal savings revolution, slash the financial barriers to college and university and solve some problems with tax-free bonds, not more taxpayer bondage.

Oh yeah, and maybe change a few things so people without money had a harder time buying houses. Just screws it up for everyone.

I thought such thoughts. But said little, as the economist leaned on his elbows and probed me with questions on where a new government might take the country.

“Wrong one to ask,” I offered. “I’m just a guy who doesn’t quit.”

He laughed and left. Incredulous.


#1 Just Janice on 09.01.09 at 10:39 pm

You would have just won my vote, if only you were running in my riding…

I particularly think that government needs to think more about ‘investment goods’ like increasing the amount of financial literacy among Canadians and focussing on promoting ‘health’ as opposed to providing ever increasing amounts of ‘health care’. Instead we’re stuck in ‘survival good’ mode focused on staving off the inevitable and doing nothing to mitigate the impact of the inevitable when it finally does happen. It might mean spending more now, to spend much less later.

A society that eats its young does not tend to survive long….

#2 ralph on 09.01.09 at 10:48 pm

I am afraid things will have to get much worse before people will wake up. Malls and big box stores are still busy with customers buying like there is no tomorrow. There was a huge mall that just opened north part of Calgary.

What is it going to take? A pandemic, another world war, some other major crisis? Will history repeat itself? It is not if, but when. Hope not!

#3 Dave on 09.01.09 at 11:09 pm

hey, I’ve disagreed with you at times, but I’d be there at any hour of the day to support you in any political move. I was either too young or was oblivious to your previous campaigns. Your demeanor is obvious and I have time for that.

if it counts for anything, look at Ron Paul. He ran for president and lost by a landslide. A few months later, his audit the fed bill that he’s been pushing continues to get more and more attention.

Sometimes you have to do what you believe in.

#4 Chaostrology on 09.01.09 at 11:16 pm

Dear Mr. Turner,

Step away from the ClusterF***!

We will need you after TSHTF.

#5 Jake on 09.01.09 at 11:36 pm

Great post Garth. You do have a unique skill set that would certainly come in handy in Ottawa. You have definitely earned my respect. Just one favor to ask…..I was watching footage from the Liberal caucus today and all of the goofy chanting and clapping almost made me hurl. Please never be caught chanting, clapping and dancing on national TV. It will totally ruin the persona of the Harley riding, whiskey drinking hard ass that we strive to emulate.

#6 Shawn Allen on 09.01.09 at 11:47 pm

We are governed by party (brand) and backbenchers seem to have little input.

Therefore, quite lgically, most people vote by brand (Party) with scant heed to the individual.

Also many people observe that one vote is highly unlikely to make a difference in who gets in in their rding, much less which Party gets to govern. Thereore many people don’t bother to vote.

It’s politically incorrect to say that mathematically one vote is likely a waste of time, still many people know this math is true and they don’t bother to vote. (Though they should as a matter of civic pride and just becasue they can)

If you run as a Liberal again you might win.

Don’t even think about going independent, you would get about as many votes as no-name brand cola, which is to say very few.

#7 Joseph on 09.01.09 at 11:49 pm

I’ve worked for the Federal Government for 22 years and the people that speak up on “principle” finish last. They are painted as being “negative”. The people on this blog appreciate your candor, but being placed in public office, those around you will not. Politics rules. I know, I have talked to many prodigals in various government departments who expressed their points of view, who were then marginalized, and ultimately ended up leaving for the private sector. Unless you have a crater full of prescription drugs awaiting you to keep you sane at night, you are making a mistake going back into that realm. Keep your sanity and be a critic of bad government policy decisions from a distance.

#8 Helmut on 09.02.09 at 12:59 am

Your my kind o’ guy…go for it :)

#9 Smith-Martin on 09.02.09 at 1:00 am

Garth, great blog, I am sure you will get a little or a lot of flak, but no matter, there are things that need to be said, and you do that very well.
You may have to come to a decision sooner then later, to run for government, as it looks like the election gremlins are playing with the idea of an election. Do we need a change in Ottawa? probably, can the country afford still more reckless spending, I think not, but I’m just a taxpaying senior.
It seems to me many people are more intent on digging themselves deeper in debt, then what will happen if we do not start working at an economic plan to pay down debt.
Debt is the worst form of slavery, yet we still use plastic to purchase items we cannot afford, and do not need. Want that bigger house, bigger mortgage, newer furnishings, and yet more stuff. where it will end is any ones guess.
As I have matured I find we need less, of everything,
A small home ,paid for, a yard with room for a garden. Less worry, and stress. It matters little in life what others have, a roof over head, a warm bed to sleep in, good food well prepared, and someone to converse with, especially at the end of the day when Garth has posted his latest .
We read your blog discuss the issues you raise, and think perhaps Garth should run again, we could sure use your wit, and common sense, Think of it, a politician who believes his job is to work for the people!
What ever your decision Good luck.

#10 Nostradamus Le Mad Vlad on 09.02.09 at 1:02 am

One way or another, it wasn’t too difficult to see where you were going to end up. Flatten ’em, baby! And keep Iggy sharp on his toes.

“. . . shut up and kiss butt.” That’s for Harper-Flanagan worshippers; never stoop to their latrine levels.

“. . . building prisons in Kandahar.” Now there is a novel idea — if elected, work toward ringing our troops home. Don’t spend any more tax dollars on a non-winnable war. That’s the US’s baby; let them deal with it.
A conversation between Deep Throat and GC(?) on Vancouver RE. —
“. . . Over 90% of the growth in Canadian mortgage lending since 2007 has come from National Housing Act mortgage-backed securities.

“GC: You mean the marginal home buyer is being financed by…

“DT: That’s right. Ottawa. The loans might be written at a bank, but the money comes from the government. Pick up the CMHC’s last annual report. You’re a smart guy. I’m sure you can follow the numbers. . . .”
From Financial Ninja: “Note: Real Estate is one of the largest sources of demand for copper.” So, what happens to copper prices if RE heads south? All fall down!
Looking at the headlines of these — & — one can see who is running the US, and it is NOT Obama.

If he WAS running it, there would be no fighting in AfPak, and our troops would be in other parts of the world helping those who need it.
From Mish’s site (no link) . . .
“World’s Largest Shopping Mall Sits Vacant

“The world’s largest shopping mall, South China Mall in Guangzhou, China, is almost entirely empty. Click on the link to see a fascinating video.

“If you thought Minnesota’s Mall of America was the world’s biggest shopping center, think again. South China Mall is a Vegas-like spectacle built in 2005 that now sits almost entirely empty. In the current economic climate, could this be a symbol of things to come?”

#11 Grumpydawgs on 09.02.09 at 1:09 am

Well Garth, of course this comment is correct

“Equally, I’m saddened at the lack of attention being given to a looming retirement crisis. Nobody can live on the CPP. Corporate pensions are disappearing and others face a funding crisis. Personal savings rates have cratered and governments are doing nothing that I can see to address this. Even calling a national retirement conference or appointing an investigative body would be a start. ”

The debt ratio in Canada is now 154%. Food bank ads are showing happy seniors walking out the door with a box of crackers. Working people are maxed out and borrowing much more than they can ever afford to pay back. Its not that either of theses groups are overly greedy and have spent too much. The seniors have had an entire generation of savings stripped away by an insidious inflation that the government refuses to recognize publicly. Paying seniors nothing on their savings and then forcing them to crystallize their savings investments in order to fight a losing battle against food inflation isn’t the seniors fault, they have had everything stacked against them. Their money has run out too soon because every financial equation they ever learned was tossed out the window because of government intervention in the markets. Did the seniors manipulate the interest rates down to zero? No. Did they plan on having to sell their savings vehicles and have the benefit of a saver clawed back in tax? No.

I stood in line behind a postman in the supermarket who pulled out five credit cards to pay for his weekly groceries, they were all refused for being over the limit. he left his weeks groceries on the counter and walked away. The groceries contained kids ceraels and milk. What has happened to costs when a well paid civil servant can’t afford to feed his kids?

Vancouver real estate has the dubious distinction of being the second most expensive by income/debt ratio on the planet at 10.8 times earnings, behind Beijing at 35 times earnings. Are we really to believe that saving every financial crisis with free government money is the path to economic redemption? Greenspan started this calamity when he discovered a fix to the tech bubble meltdown. The problem was that it created tremendous greed by the government and the banksters. It ran unchecked. There is simply no way a young family can purchase a home with any traditional financial plan. The hoax created by zero down products, artificial low rates and 35 year amotizations is leading to a disaster than has no fixes. All the tricks have been used. The last buyers are getting sucked and maxed out and there is no one to replace them. So whats next? To the government it doesn’t seem to matter.

Now the lagging effect of a phony stimulus is supposed to be pointing towards a recovery….01% in June based on historically easy money, retail stores going broke and having to blow inventory out the door and a few last desperate shoppers with a bit of room left on an increased credit line are not ‘recovery’. Its a last gasp.

two isssues underline this effect. The week after the ‘cash for clunkers’ stimulus in the states and car sales are back to zero with as many dealers closed . In China the government pulled back spending by 80% and within days the markets crashed more than 30%. This exactly what is going to happen here, no doubt. Unemployment is up, corporate profits are down, commercial real estate is imploding retail businesses are shuttering at a blinding pace.

The budget from the BC LIBS is a death knell. If you figure in the 1.6 billion from the feds for the HST the budget numbers swell ti 7.1 billion. resource revnues are still going down Natural gas companys are pulling rigs out of the ground. Forestry is dead, fishers have no fish, tourism is the worst ever, film buisness is dead. And finally the Olympic projections for revenue are ghastly which will leave the BC taxpayer so far in a hole we won’t see the light of day for a generation. With five months to go only 9 corporate sponsors have confiormed particapation , the others are Crown Corporations ( which in itself should be a crime) that are pissing money into the games that is supposed to spent on public services. It does not look good.

#12 Onemorething on 09.02.09 at 1:18 am

By the way Canada will unfold in the next 10 years I would only run for a political position to maintain some sort of income flow and spectator seat.

By that time Garth, all you have preached will be in play so why not brother!

Nice to see MISH putting his comments together to support your view on Canadian RE.

Canadian home prices are a bubble waiting to pop. When the bubble does pop, it will take as long to fix as in the US, 6-8 years minimum, perhaps way longer, depending on how big the bubbles got in each location and the speed of the declines.

Mike “Mish” Shedlock

#13 Just Wondering on 09.02.09 at 1:20 am

While I would vote for you before many other politicians Garth, I would sooner see our political system changed. The current system has so many inherent weaknesses that it should be dumped. Even the “honest politician” (there has to be a few) is eventually corrupted by repaying the favours that were granted on the way to the top or succumbs to tireless lobbyists whose budgets seem endless.

I no longer want to be “represented” by someone else. I have no faith that a large portion of my money (yes it is mine, the government is only distributing it) is not being wasted on bizarre programs that help no one.

So what’s to be done? Simply changing who represents us is not working (apologies again Garth). I would like to see a system akin to jury duty where Canadians (just regular folk) are required to run their own country. If I remember my statistics class correctly the significant number is between 600 and 700. And yes, you will have some real flakes in that group but you’ll also have some real geniuses. You’ll also have every religion, every race, every social strata, etc. represented. And we’ll save money. These folks will have to be paid while they are away from their jobs and running the country but it will be a lot less than we pay for elections, politicians salaries, offices, etc. now.

I don’t want to take up too much space here so I’ll save the details for another time. But don’t write this idea off as crazy without thinking about it a little. Just realize that most of us are as smart or smarter than most politicians just as we are smarter than most economists (sold the house in 2007 – happy renter).

#14 Daystar on 09.02.09 at 1:27 am

I’m quite “disturbed” with where this Harper government has taken Canada as well. We are now presiding over what is a possible peaking real estate bubble driven by rock bottom interest rate policies, loose lending regs and pratices in the mortgage industry and record federal deficits and now first time trade deficits since 76′. Couple this with what has happened to Ontario’s manufacturing industry and what will happen to Canadian currencies and interest rates once a U.S. recovery shows itself…

This nation will soon face rising rates, a dropping loonie (which isn’t all bad but not all good depending on how far it falls, the sweet spot is between .80 and .90 cents), repeat record federal deficits, a continual avalanche selloff of domestic corps to foreign corps forcing our first time trade deficit in 33 years to grow… and what will be the gain besides higher taxes, less spending power abroad and shrunken equity at home and hence domestic economy once this real estate bubble deflates from interest rates being forced to rise under such reckless, blind governmental management?

Lets take a trip down memory lane…

In late 00′ beginning of 01′, the bubble crashed. In its pancaked wake, a U.S. recession loomed as the markets took a major correction that didn’t bottom until October of 02′. Do you all remember that one? It was viscious. It was as bad a panick as November of last year in the TSX/Ventures in the Nasdaq and Wall Street during those times. And during that time, Greenspan took interest rates from… well, lets just take a look at a graph as seeing tells all:

And when Bush took office, what was his agenda? To make sure every american who wanted to own a home could buy one. And thats what happened. He did it, people, to create high Re valuations and thus, to create a wealth effect, I think at first to get the U.S. out of a recession but then Greed took over. If you had ID and a pulse and a job for longer than 2 weeks, you could borrow 6 figures and buy yourself a house. Thats how it was for americans back in the day.

And real estate valuations due to rock bottom fed rates and mortage industry deregulation skyrocketed to levels never seen before once Bush sat in the whitehouse and construction booms and financial booms and real estate bubbles and yes, wars and 911’s all came with a fury and
Americans, pumped up by their gains in personal equity, felt like they owned the world.

And then… in 05′, the wheels began to come off. The RE bubble began to peak and burst. Regulators began to speak out about irregular national lending practices and that widescale mortgage fraud was rampid. And the feds, forget the spin folks, their fed rate tells the tale in the backdrop of economical history, the feds raised their rates.

Did this rise in rates force their real estate valuations to correct? Absolutely. The Greenback came under pressure from Bush’s costly war on Iraq and record deficits and big need to borrow and with it, came a major drop in consumer spending, a major financial fall out from mortgage defaults and a nasty real estate led recession.

And so now I ask you… why did the feds raise their rates knowing that this would be the result? The answer, readers, is because they had one of two choices. Let the greenback fall, and we all know what this would have done for their economy in the face of 30 years of federal deficits and 25 years of trade deficits as big borrowers and big spenders… not to mention what would happen to their trading partners who own major chunks of their currency!

And so the U.S. feds raised their rates to attract foreign investors to prop up their dollar due to the fact that this is what had to be done or else watch it fall and if it fell to far, the world is in a depression, never mind recession thats how big the U.S. economy is and what their spending (or lack thereof) creates around the world.

And then… as a result of higher rates in the middle of a real estate bubble propped up by former lower interest rates and shady loans bred by deregulation and government mis-management and the human factors of greed and stupitidy, the real estate bubble burst and financials began to feel some hits. By 2007 and 2008, brokerages began to go bankrupt. And then banks. And then Chevrolet. And Dodge. And a host of other U.S. icons. And then a recession hit as personal wealth shrunk both by shrunken markets and shrunken RE valuations. And federal debt piled sky high as tax revenues plummetted and social spending skyrocketed. And what happened to fed rates from 06′ to 08′ just as a reminder?

Once U.S. currency began to stablize and other nations, China and Japan specifically… recognized and understood the inherent dangers of not stablizing U.S. currency and hence their biggest trading partner, in early 08′ both nations pumped money into the U.S. treasury… and rates fell. They fell for three big reasons. IMF stepped in, nations world wide reeled from a gutted U.S. economy and loss of their biggest spender so much so that they began to take the U.S. dollar seriously and prop it up (go back to Japans moves over this time frame as well as China’s and the oil empirates) because its a house of cards and if the Greenback goes down, the worlds economy goes down, its really that simple. Again, take a look at who owns what of the U.S. dollar and you’ll all know why.

China and Japan now own close to half of U.S. fed debt and of all of the U.S.’s fed debt, over 50% of it is now foreign owned. Do you all see now why Asia stepped in to rescue the U.S. greenback? Owning a quarter of every dollar might have something to do with it….

And since then, a new government came in to replace the old and it hasn’t been easy for them. Americans are in an ugly mood now. A lot of jobs and wealth has been lost as boom has gone to bust and bubbles pancaked and left craters behind. And the ones who are fiscally conservative worry for their childrens future because they know first hand what debt can do to their own futures never mind the futures of their loved ones so they worry and rightly so.

And here in Canada we should be worried too. Very worried. Because in case a good chunk of readers haven’t picked up on it yet, the Harper administration for some reason thought and still thinks the Bush adminstrations way of doing business was the best way because:

– Harper and Co. made it real easy to buy homes with the introduction of CMHC approved 40 year nothing down mortgage amortizations for a full 2. 5 years. Was Harper’s plan with Canadian real estate to create a bubble and as a result, a wealth effect in Canada just as GWB did in the U.S. from 2000 through 2005 and run it to the max regardless of the consequences?

– They eliminated record surplus’s in looking back on what is the best of times both in commodity valuations and RE valuations and said “surplus’s mean we are overtaxed” so they slashed income taxes, the GST by two points and raised spending particularly in defense, eliminating surplus’s all together. The result was Bushian. The GST cut in particular over heated an already red hot economy, opening the door wider to imports and thus trade deficits, while forcing us now to run larger deficits and in the future, more debt interest.

– They then said big deficits are ok in tough times and are currently running what is on pace to be a 60 billion dollar deficit year over year, not counting what could be a huge whopper coming in CMHC default loans. Money must be easy for them to borrow… for now.

– Harper and Co. up and decided that trade deficits are now in vogue. They love foreign M & A’s of our nations own corps and as a result, we just ran our first trade deficit since 76′. “Bon Temps Rouler” describes them well. Good bye domestic ownership, hello foreign ownership, we are better off working for the People’s Republic of China, let the good times roll!

So where are we at now? Record deficits… trade deficits… a recession still, and a bonifide real estate bubble brought on by record low Bank of Canada interest rates.

And what does the future hold? I’ll make it real simple for you all.

This is U.S. interest rates in the face of an oversold real estate market:

THe outcome to rock bottom interest rates being held steady during an oversold real estate market is predictable. It will create a wealth effect. It will take time, I might add and consumer confidence there and financials will need to re-ajust to their horrid real estate correction and reset their ways of thinking, but the U.S. economy will bounce back. The biggest reason of all? Oversold real estate market. Add low rates and RE valuations rise, we get a wealth effect. Readers, this isn’t the first time governments have done this. Thats why I’m taking the time to remind you of this decades history because it truly is that important to grasp. We need to know this stuff to become a fully educated voter (and buyer of real estate)

As a result of a wealth effect brought on by higher RE valuations in the U.S., financials, construction, personal equity and consumer spending will heal, internal manufacturing will take a boost and while systemic problems remain such as huge federal/state/county debt and a hollowed out manufacturing sector particularly in Ohio and the east coast, the U.S. will recover, especially with well planned targetted stimulus programs.

And what of Canada? what of Canada if the U.S. does recover? Where will we be, running record deficits and trade deficits in the face of a U.S. recovery that is highly likely to give the greenback some pop… where will Canada’s looney be and what will the Bank of Canada’s response be to pressure on the looney from a rising greenback?

Will they raise interest rates?

And what will happen to Canada’s real estate valuations should rates rise in the face of a Canadian real estate market bubble? And what wil happen to Canada’s economy if Real estate dives here? And finally, what ever made anyone think as Steve does… that Bush policies in real estate will work up here in Canada? It sure didn’t down there…

So yeah, I’m worried to. I’m worried that Canadians will elect Harper one more time just because a third of them think they’ll get what they want with Harper in power and to them, I beg them to be careful what they wish for because that price might be awefully steep if ever delivered at all. Bush made a lot of promises too.. The bottom line is that we need a federal government that is fiscally responsible enough to balance budgets in hard times or Canada loses its ability to control its interest rates and that means our real estate bubble bursts and you should all know what that means to our economy by now. Should it happen and should it be dramatic, our future will look like the U.S. economy’s last 3 years. It worries me and it should worry the rest of you as well.

#15 Anon - GTA on 09.02.09 at 1:41 am

I’d vote for u anyday…

I agree with 95% of ur reasonings…and believe u’d B good 4 our country!
We’d have atleast some1 with [email protected]$ to say and do what’s rite 4 all…

#16 WillsDad on 09.02.09 at 1:47 am

Please do it man. The country needs someone with a track record of following his principles.

#17 Mark Wayne on 09.02.09 at 2:18 am

I have been voting for 28 years. I don’t think any of them got in, but I didn’t give up(totally). I don’t live in your riding, so despite my support of your ideas, I can’t vote(legally) for you. I hope this doesn’t diminish my remarks. I have read one of your books, and I have followed your”blogging” for several years. We enjoy your level-headed thinking and your analytical mind.
A certain amount of “butt-kissing” is necessary. Some of us just call it “diplomacy”. You would be much more use to us if you regained your seat. Your presence can have a positive influence on the others. I hope you run in the next election.

#18 Happy Renter in North Van on 09.02.09 at 2:26 am

Garth, I’ve never met you but I figure you’re a realist, no BS kind of guy…

Here’s my reasoning why you shouldn’t run…

1. You run as an independant, you win, you’re consigned to the nosebleed seats and get to ask 2 questions during the next Parliament.
2. You don’t run as an independant… Who would you run for? You ran for the Conservatives and the Liberals and didn’t seem eager to having your nose painted brown for one of the mainline parties.
3. You run for the NDP and everyone laughs at you… Ditto for the Green Party.
4. The Block Quebecois doesn’t field candidates in Ontario.
5. You create your own party with you as the Leader… Then everyone thinks you’re a megalomaniac like Mario Dumont.

I think you’re in the Catbird’s seat right now… You get to afflict the homeowning comfortable and comfort the renting afflicted. And you get to cash your advances from your publishers… Seems like a no-brainer to me…

#19 Mike (Authentic) on 09.02.09 at 2:53 am

“Instead, I decided to make it clear to my political masters that I worked for the people first, and them second, and had no intention of going to Ottawa to be silent. ” – Garth

You would definately would have our votes if we were in your riding. We were in, funny enough, Steven Harpers Calgary riding when he was running (but neither of us voted for him).

But I’m sure you will again win over many new voter hearts.

You had me at “work(ing) for the people first”

The very best of luck Garth! We need a forward thinking politican in Ottawa!


#20 Munch on 09.02.09 at 4:05 am

Goooooooooooooooooooo Garth!

Sorry, I would vote if I could, but I can’t!

Unless I apply for asylum from South Africa?

#21 NOBODY on 09.02.09 at 5:13 am

Start your own party…

#22 robert on 09.02.09 at 6:01 am

Agreed. Especially since a Liberal victory is going to feel like an Obama “victory” in very short order.

#23 Mike Oxlong on 09.02.09 at 7:04 am

I am no fan of Harper, but even a less a fan of “iggy”. Your delusional if you think a change of party will have any significant impact on what is happening out there.
I work directly with Realtors and when we discuss polictics, by far the majority are dogmatically liberal supporters. These are people who make obscene amounts of money for very little work. Take a look at Toronto, it bleeds red and (NDP) orange. The majority of these people are artsy or financially dependant on sucking from the public teet. I fail to see how the liberal party will be the “great saviours” of our situation. Garth I respect your decision and will listen to what you and your party have to say, but I hope you and Iggy can come up with some great ideas (fiscally conservative and sensible social policies that don’t bleed the public coffers dry) to sway my vote.
Good Luck

#24 wjp on 09.02.09 at 7:04 am

In the last two Federal elections, I voted for Garth. Of course in this election, I can’t as I still live in the Halton Federal District. I will be given the choice between two parachuted candidates in the two main parties, I party Bobbleheads, I believe voting for a party is a waste of time, we may as well vote for a dictatorship as the PMO calls all the shots. Maybe that is why I voted Conservative in one election and Liberal the next or just maybe the local candidate had enough guts to represent the people before party. And look where that got him. We get what we collectively deserve and quite frankly that is misrepresentation. Tell us one thing, do another! Until the voting public wakes up, we are doomed to repeat the same old mistakes over and over again. At the moment we have a socialist government running Canada using the name CPC. Would the Liberals or the NDP be any different? Not a chance! If there was 308 independent members, they would have to be given the opportunity to govern…that will happen when hell freezes over! Maybe Dec 21, 2012?

#25 wjp on 09.02.09 at 7:07 am

The gifts of Government that keep giving!

#26 wellwell on 09.02.09 at 7:22 am

Run, Garth, run!

Dave Tilson supported your right to blog, but he’s such an aggressive partisan hack that I’m glad you’re running against him. I just listened to Ignatieff’s Sudbury speech on CPAC, and he seems (at last) to be firing on all cynliders. This should be an interesting election. If the Liberals want to win, they really should drop the cynical EI issue in favour of broader themes of sanity (financial and otherwise) and vision for the country.

#27 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 09.02.09 at 7:56 am


It is very nice to see you back into your real area of contribution…political thoughts. What we need more than anything is a Centrist Party that truly represents the modern Centre of Canadian thinking. The two major parties are divided within their own ranks and have lost the ability to lead.

I think Ignatieff is attempting to save his own hide and I do not trust the man one bit. His eyes tell me BEWARE!

Harper, on the other hand, is even worse. He is devious, narcissistic, and craftily sly without discernable ethic or moral constraint. His ideology is out of date and his methods are atrocious.

To be honest, Jack Layton is the only one seeming to speak about things that affect real people as individuals, not merely voting blog groups.

The Greens have some excellent platform positions, but they are still too infested with hardline Greenpeace types. Elizabeth May needs to settle down and run in one riding. Her bouncing around the country to find a winnable seat has lost my support. I find that no different than ‘Two Tier’ Tony Clement parachuting into the Muskoka-Parry Sound riding.

When the election is called I will remember that I am voting for the candidate in MY riding to REPRESENT MY INTERESTS, not voting for the Party Leader.

We have a fairly good Conservative MP currently, and the only real competition of qualified background the last election was the Green Candidate.

Until we rid ourselves of the FPTP system it is a very difficult choice because although we have an acceptable MP, he lacks the stature as a back bencher to be as effective as he should be in a real democracy. Harper has no clue as to what real leadership is about. he thinks force and fear are the characteristics of a leader. He is simply wrong. A real leader brings people together by rational thinking and winning them over, not ruling by FUD and threats.

The Iron Fist approach barely works even with the worst miscreant, much less people of integrity. It is delusional to think people are following you when they are doing so out of cowardly fear. Such leaders are amazed when they suddenly find themselves under the very bus they have thrown so many others. Funny thing how when the worm turns it often becomes a King Cobra.

I, for one, take the democratic process very seriously. You, again, represent most of my ethical beliefs, yet I still disagree with you on some issues such as a low Canadian dollar, and not making housing available to all. I detect a sense of ‘entitlement’ regarding your position and interests in the Real Estate industry. That is, by far, the one thing I would question.

We have been supporting the RE and developers way too long. We need to face the fact that everyone needs affordable housing and that the land must be shared with all in a responsible and sustainable manner. Housing can take many forms, but the land should belong to everyone as in the Crown owning it.

I wish you the best in your efforts, but as you say, it may be insane to try, but I must be insane too because I keep on trying despite all the barriers. Go for it Garth because we seriously need quality people with quality minds leading this great country.

#28 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 09.02.09 at 8:03 am

not merely voting blog groups.

Should have read ‘voting block groups.’ I obviously need another cup of coffee. LOL

#29 Kris on 09.02.09 at 8:11 am

You’re a sucker for punishment.

Our government needs more representatives who are not afraid to say interesting things. Makes politics much more enjoyable.

#30 Nishe on 09.02.09 at 8:13 am

As a person who refuses to vote for existing parties and their leaders, I would come out to vote for you! We need “new blood” and someone with convictions and the balls to go against the rest for what is right. We need someone like you!

#31 David Bakody on 09.02.09 at 8:22 am

Garth pencil me in for sticks and more ….. I will start saving some of coffee money now ! Some say why? and others say why not! You have laid a platform out that each and every Canadian should understand …. so why not stand on le grande stage and tell all Canadians coast to coast to coast.

#32 Herb on 09.02.09 at 8:34 am

Go Garth, GO!

Tilson needs a kick in the pants, Harper someone who will speak the truth to him, and we a politician who will give us plain language and an ear through digital democracy. Now, if only the Liberal Party would stop floundering and would rediscover politics …

For as little as it will be worth, you’ll have my financial support for your campaign again. That will be my “vote” for Turner from another riding.

#33 WillsDad on 09.02.09 at 8:59 am

on second thought, what’s the point? you wouldn’t be able to affect change.

sad but true…your blog is 100x more influential than you could ever be in that office. The people in office with the real power have to sell their souls.

#34 Robert1 on 09.02.09 at 9:03 am

” The simple answer is, the right thing to do is not always the easy thing. Standing up for principal isn’t a matter of a win or a loss. If that’s the only motivation for a political career, you don’t deserve one. ”

Garth Turner



Your eloquent words remind me of a former boss who handed out pencil holders to all his supervisory staff, many years ago. Emblazoned on said pencil holder were the words:

” There is a difference between doing things right and doing the right things ”

One has to wonder if P.M. Harper and his Finance Minister Flaherty qualify in either regard, doing things right OR doing the right things?

Methinks Not ! Bring On The Election !!!

#35 Evangeline on 09.02.09 at 9:08 am

((I particularly think that government needs to think more about ‘investment goods’ like increasing the amount of financial literacy among Canadians and focussing on promoting ‘health’ as opposed to providing ever increasing amounts of ‘health care’. Instead we’re stuck in ’survival good’ mode focused on staving off the inevitable and doing nothing to mitigate the impact of the inevitable when it finally does happen. It might mean spending more now, to spend much less later))

It is so sad that Canadians want to cede so much power to their government which they apparently think is mummy-daddy who can fix everything.

The more power we give government the more they will tax us and the poorer and less free each of us will be.

The best thing Canadians could do for themselves is to stop thinking of an ideal government as Santa Claus and the tooth fairy wrapped into one. Government is a necessary evil that serves a necessary function but Canadians want government to be much more than that, to actually take over areas that should remain areas of personal responsibility. Financial literacy is one of those areas. Taking care of one’s health is another.

#36 Denis on 09.02.09 at 9:21 am

You have my full support…. What you just posted is exactly what we need in parliamentarians.

My only worry (like many others) … Could it be too premature considering that the RE market is still propped up on the house of cards that Flaherty built with retarded Ams, little to no down payments and CMHC’s Backing?

On a side note, but also relevant … I admitted a few days ago that I was suffering from leader envy. Have you guys seen how open the White House website has become? ( Our Government needs to get with the program!

#37 Evangeline on 09.02.09 at 9:27 am



I second your emotion!!!

#38 Nostradamus jr. on 09.02.09 at 9:27 am

“”The simple answer is, the right thing to do is not always the easy thing. Standing up for principal isn’t a matter of a win or a loss. If that’s the only motivation for a political career, you don’t deserve one.””

…Garth…you should be running as an independant then.

The balance of todays blog is one of a New Democrat.

…Do what Ron Paul would do…

#39 Evangeline on 09.02.09 at 9:31 am

((You may have to come to a decision sooner then later, to run for government, as it looks like the election gremlins are playing with the idea of an election))

I have already seen lawn signs in my Toronto neighbourhood. (for the PC candidate)

There is no PC. Do you mean Reform? — Garth

#40 Rhino on 09.02.09 at 9:31 am

Great post Garth.

Why can’t other folks with political aspirations stand up and be counted?

It is time to get the “Old Boy’s Network” out of power?

Ooops.. money = power in our country. Just look at some posts here…

More rhetorical questions…

#41 Evangeline on 09.02.09 at 9:36 am

((Think of it, a politician who believes his job is to work for the people!))

Even if they start out that way, sooner or later, the process and political necessity forces politicians to compromise their principles.

#42 Larry on 09.02.09 at 9:38 am

Run as an independent Garth.

#43 Vicguy on 09.02.09 at 9:48 am

Your ‘digital democracy’ system is how all MP’s should do their jobs. I’ll contribute to your campaign if you win your riding’s candidacy.

Having said that, I don’t think it’ll happen with the Liberals. Mr. Ignatieff is as much a control freak as Mr. Harper, and would not welcome a backbencher who would eventually criticize Liberal policies on a highly publicized website. He’ll likely block your nomination. If you were nominated and elected, he would likely try to muzzle you, just as Mr. Harper did.

Going the independent or ‘Green’ route may be your best bet.

#44 Downsized and Delighted on 09.02.09 at 9:48 am

Personally, I don’t need any help with my retirement because I haven’t been greedy my whole life like the people who do need help. Our generation has had it’s kick at the can and if they haven’t saved well, why should they be bailed out by the young people of this country?

I feel somewhat responsible for the fact that young people have to pay such crazy sums for basic housing.(for all the years that my generation has run up the prices)

If the government was truly concerned about keeping housing affordable they would slap a capital gains tax on all new houses sold within 2 years of completion, and all houses flipped within 2 years. That otta keep the prices down.

Problem is, the whole economy revolves around housing so they keep the prices inflated and throw the young people a bone in the form of low interest rates and high ratio mortgages.

If YOUR solution Garth is to get rid of the perks to young homeowners, and to add more tax on their consumption (my generation does not suffer at all from a consumption tax since we already have everything we need), how do you plan to win their votes????? And how do you see all those builders/developers and investors (like yourself) paying their share?

#45 changster on 09.02.09 at 10:03 am

I hope one day when u become the Prime Minister, the following changes will take place :
1) Canadians will have a “proportional representation ” system of voting instead of “first past the post” one.
2) The PMO(prime minister’s office) will not be allowed to hire Lobbyists.
3) MPs should not have to toe the party line and the only way an MP can loose a cabinet post or party status is through a mechanism of recall by your own constituents.
4) Parliament will enact a law making it mendatory for every eligible voter in Canada to excercise their vote during all elections.

#46 what if it doesnt?? on 09.02.09 at 10:04 am

eventhought i believe that the housing prices will be heading south I still wonder what if they do not?
I have been looking at some condos downtown and I have found a building under construction right now closing next spring. They have a unit on lower pen house with 9 foot c. and 772 sqf going for just under 400K!!! I certaily think 520 dollers per sqf is high but I can afford it with 25% downpayment. What is this goes to 450 next year when its ready? I mean we all THINK that we will see a downturn but what if it never comes??
I am so confused and dont know what to do

#47 JoeCalgary on 09.02.09 at 10:10 am

#13 Great idea. And its composition must be 52% women.

Take a look at Swiss democracy: the people get to vote on pretty well everything. Some of them complain about having to vote too often, but none of them can say legislation got passed without their ok.

#48 PTDBD on 09.02.09 at 10:11 am

probed me with questions on where a new government might take the country.

“Wrong one to ask,” I offered. “I’m just a guy who doesn’t quit.”

So where might a new government take the country? You and I know that it certainly won’t implement the measures that you desire. You will have no influence and be frustrated, as we all are by the controlled course of events. Your epiphany of “the right thing to do is not often an easy thing” is absolutely correct.

But, please consider, in this case the “right thing to do” may be first to look after your own health and satisfaction and that of your partner. If that’s all factored in and you do decide to join the circus, then I wish you the best in your choice. Good Luck and thanks again for the effort put into the Blog.

#49 Samantha on 09.02.09 at 10:12 am

You go Garth! Even if those of us outside your riding can’t vote for you, we can still provide groundswell support from outside the riding.

“And I’d probably still be an MP if I’d ever learn to shut up and kiss butt.”

Don’t ever shut up. And, with respect to “kiss butt”, the trick is to let them think it’s a butt kiss, when actually you have your boot firmly planted in their butts. Keeps them on their toes that way.

p.s. Ditch the Cranberry-lemon-tofu muffins – life is too short. A great chocolate cake you’ll remember – that muffin, not so much.

#50 Denis on 09.02.09 at 10:27 am

What? The HRTC never passed? Can someone confirm this? This would be quite the boondogle considering the Conservatives pushed everyone and advertised to spend, spend, spend on Home Renos and to keep their receipts….

Kiss The Home Renovation Tax Credit Good Bye

#51 JoeCalgary on 09.02.09 at 10:38 am

“School officials in eastern China found responsible for a swine flu outbreak at a provincial high school that led to 109 students being infected will be severely punished, a local official said.”

China is ignoring the fact that this H1N1 flu, unlike most flus, sometimes has no fever.

Also unlike most flus, this one is killing a disproportionate number of children and of young adults. Some died because testing, most likely just nose or throat swabs, gave false negatives and thus they didn’t receive the treatment they should have in time. According to some who have had it, the definition of “mild” is that you’re not on a ventilator. About a third of those who have died have not had “underlying conditions.”

Be careful out there.

And stop spitting!

#52 rory on 09.02.09 at 10:55 am

Hi all;

I get the sense from some that electing GT will be a ticket to the promised land …GT is good but he is still just a guy not a god.

No matter who wins or leads, the sheeple have absolutely no concept of the sacrifice that will be required to right the good ship Canada …we are talking about a serious lost of housing wealth, reduced wages, pensions and benefits across the board, less services, longer wait times, higher unemployement, etc …we are not as a country ready for this nor will we ever be but it has to happen … everything eventually reverts to the mean…1.3B Chinese want our standard of living …how do we compete with $20+ an hour garbage men with pensions …simple answer – we cannot …get used to it and get ready for the hard choices …see if the tough love GT needs to give us translates to still loving the Hon. GT in a few years …IMO.

#53 Solitario on 09.02.09 at 10:57 am

“…and less concern about building prisons in Kandahar”, “…restore assets like income trusts, reduce tax on incomes and shift it lightly to consumption, use tax incentives to start a personal savings revolution”.
my vote is yours. I understand you will no longer candidate in Halton , but I so much believe in your above listed goals and in your honesty, I will be going to vote for the local Liberal candidate.

#54 Chris S. on 09.02.09 at 10:59 am

A few words on why running and sitting as an independent is a tricky prospect. Not being affiliated with a party puts a member at a disadvantage for asking questions during Question Period, serving on committees and getting time during debate of bills. Even before that, independents have much more stringent rules governing how they run to be elected. They cannot raise funds outside of writ period, that is before an election is called, nor can they issue tax receipts for any contribution outside of this time. Further, they are forced to finance everything themselves and cannot take out the traditional party-backed loans that all party-affiliated candidates enjoy. Even worse, independents are often shut out of all-candidates debates and television appearances on shows such as Goldhawk Live. You can see an interview on MPtv of Louise Thibault, a member of parliament who was elected as a BQ but left her party to sit as an independent. She discusses some of the ups and downs to this:

Also, search for Garth’s own words on his experiences as an independent, also on Google Video as MPtv segments:

#55 DB on 09.02.09 at 11:02 am

Garth- you are going to run again…yes….yes…. best political news we have had all year. Parliament needs a couple of hundred more like you with your forward thinking, go for it.

#56 Men With Hats on 09.02.09 at 11:04 am

Mr. Minister of Revenue .
We toasted Michael and the Libs last night for finally showing some guts .
Fifteen thousand votes is an anomaly . Never to be repeated .
The idiot is a seat warmer . Period .
Hammer ’em on the fact that this is the CRAP party and have nothing in common with true conservatism .
Their leader (?) is a megalomaniac .

#57 Calgary_rip_off on 09.02.09 at 11:05 am

Very personal post Garth, thank you.

You remarked that in Calgary it is different. Yes very much so. Every person for themselves.

You also mentioned that people vote for local things for their MP’s and MLA’s. I vote for the MP for the party I want in nationally.

One of my wife’s friends just sold her house in NW Calgary for $330K. After all her bills, she is homeless. She can only afford $700 a month rent. So she and her 3 kids will be living at the shelter downtown. Some readers here have said that rent controls are bad, bad for landlords and renters. Perhaps if there were rent controls in Alberta single now divorced moms wouldnt be raising kids in a shelter.

Again, Alberta is different. Alberta is only good if you have money. If you dont, you are screwed. Its called the Alberta disadvantage.

it’s high time that the conservative american wanna be party be thrown out. This is unlikely though, because accepting that taxes be applied to a better quality of life isnt acceptable to many conservatives. It isnt about helping out someone who needs it. Its about oil and natural gas profits.

Here’s an idea: No taxes or taxes for something. I dont feel right paying Mr. Harper’s salary and I shouldnt. He isnt doing anything. Unless some of that money starts to help out the local folks who need it, my vote goes to the NDP or the liberals, whichever party seems more likely to crush this conservative quasi american pseudo status quo party.

Garth keep the information coming on when interest rates will be higher.

#58 newcomer21 on 09.02.09 at 11:14 am


My vote doesn’t matter because I don’t live in Duffern. I am sure there is role for you somewhere in government.

You enjoy taking on hopeless odds. I can’t imagine why you would run for the liberals if you think we are going to far into debt as a country. The liberals would push us further into debt even when the signs are that the economy is starting to grow again, auto sales are up significantly, and real estate is making substantial gains in many markets.

To be a representative of the people you must present a vision of a preferred and hopefully attractive future. Your incessant gloom makes this a difficult test.

Yes, yes, we can all erect a little stage and call it “principle” but that is so cliche. Especially when your “principles” are so consistently out of step with others.

Don’t run unless you enjoy the humiliation of defeat and you have surplus cash.

#59 Live Within Your Means on 09.02.09 at 11:14 am

# 35 Evangeline

“Best thing Canadians could do for themselves is to stop thinking of an ideal government as Santa Claus and the tooth fairy wrapped into one. Government is a necessary evil that serves a necessary function but Canadians want government to be much more than that, to actually take over areas that should remain areas of personal responsibility. Financial literacy is one of those areas. Taking care of one’s health is another.”

So what are you actually saying Evangeline? I’d like to see mandatory courses in financial literacy and civics in high school. How many people were duped last year by the cons stating that a coalition government was treasonous?

As to taking care of one’s health, what are you actually implying? Please elaborate.

Garth, go with your principles. I worked for the Feds and a Prov. Govt. and spoke up against what I thought was wrong. I think I made a difference, albeit miniscule, though I was ostracized by many. At least I can sleep at night knowing that I continue to live by my principles.

#60 glenn on 09.02.09 at 11:22 am

I don’t always agree with your prognostications and I’d vote for you, if you were in my riding.

I’m thoroughly disgusted with our current crop of leaders. I have zero faith in their ability to do the right thing.

#61 Marc on 09.02.09 at 11:22 am

I would vote for you, but unfortunatly most politicians have spoiled it. I won’t waste any of my time trying to decide who is best to vote for. From now on, I simply destroy my ballot. Never felt better then doing that in the B.C. election. Until the likes of Dawn Black are forced to pay for the needed by-elections when they resign to seek employment elsewhere, then maybe I will think my vote is worthwhile and means something.

#62 FY on 09.02.09 at 11:25 am


You will do a disservice to the country if you don’t run for office.

#63 Live Within Your Means on 09.02.09 at 11:28 am

There is no PC. Do you mean Reform? — Garth

How true, Garth. They just changed their name from PC to Conservatives because they knew that the majority of Canadians would never support 20th century, regressive Reform policies.

#64 Seilfworcehtsa on 09.02.09 at 11:36 am

Flim flam Flaherty and mendacious fats Harper ought to be turfed out for the betterment of Canada. Who say
so? I say so as do many others and I am a life long Conservative. Go for it Garth, you still have another kick at the can left in you. Remember Churchill who was wont to say,” dogs look up to you, cats look down on you and pigs treat you as an equal.” Winston wasn’t a quitter. There is an ocean of problems down the road and astute and honest leadership is required now more than ever. The Reformers hatched a conspiracy to do you in and they succeeded and, as Bobby Kennedy said, “don’t get mad, get even.”

#65 charles on 09.02.09 at 11:40 am

Garth I think you should run , but only if you believe you really can make a difference .

#66 Kelly McMae on 09.02.09 at 11:46 am

A tidy little political manifesto.

The part about a systemic dearth of principal and ethic for public service is broad scoped and far reaching.

Harper preyed on fear during his last two campaigns, and will probably do the same if the motley opposition decide to take another kick at the can.

I highly respect your candor and commitment to valued principals, and wish more pursuing positions of stewardship would do the same.

#67 Kelly McMae on 09.02.09 at 11:48 am

#58 newcomer21 on 09.02.09 at 11:14 am

Seems like a ghost from a nefarious political past.

#68 JM on 09.02.09 at 11:53 am

#44 Downsized & Delighted

Thank you – a voice of reason from the Boomer side of the population.

I saved to go to school, I saved to buy a house with a down payment and now I’m saving to get things done on the house. The younger generation is left holding the bag for the boomers (again). What’s brutal is that most Boomers don’t see it. They’re enjoying the ride which those behind them will foot the bill for. I know my house will never be worth 10 to 15x it’s purchase price, it’s completely unreasonable. Even my kids will be paying for today’s runaway debt.

The financial literacy in this country is an embarrassment. I’m working hard to make sure my kids know how to save, shop smart and live within / well below their means.

#69 Barb .. a reader in Calgary on 09.02.09 at 11:58 am

Stephen Harper’s fundraising office in Ottawa contacted us twice attempting to reach my spouse (who made a 1-time contribution way back in the 1980’s) Their line: there’s going to be an election for sure
Of course the remainder of the call was ALL about blaming everyone but themselves.
The young caller, an obvious Reform Sheeple-ite, gave away another election line: “it’ll be great when Stephen gets a majority we won’t have vote again for 6 years (LOL ..they’ll easily end Canada in that time). The young Reform phone-Robot also hysteria’d that the other parties want to destroy the plan to save Canada.

So there you have it, Stephen Harper’s Reform Party Election Campaign Platform has already been revealed .. their phone-bot youngsters are breathlessly repeating these lines (I could hear the paper rustle as he quickly read line after line to me).

Are Canadians still moronic enough to fall for that all that Reform crap? It’s so scary, and it appears Stephen Harper’s Reform Party thinks they can still disguise themselves and win …scary, disingenuous, control freaks who realize that by simply being two-faced, they can fool ‘just enough sheeple’ to drink grape ‘Flavor Aid’.

#70 Caledon Spectator on 09.02.09 at 12:03 pm

I’m in you riding baby. I hate Harleys (they wake my babies) but you got my vote. I’m 37 and have voted in two elections. This will be my third. You know your stuff. We urgently need leaders to save the “investment and savings retarded” masses from themselves and the impact they can have on the rest of us. That’s a task in iteslf but a good start.

#71 Evangeline on 09.02.09 at 12:11 pm

((There is no PC. Do you mean Reform? — Garth))

I am sooooo embarrassed :(

The Sue-Ann Levy lawn sign that I saw was for the Sept. 17th St. Pauls by-election ..

#72 Barb .. a reader in Calgary on 09.02.09 at 12:12 pm

Live Within Your Means: changed their name from PC to Conservatives ..they knew majority of Canadians would never (knowingly) support ..regressive Reform policies

When rapturists like the Reform Party have their hand on the button, who needs enemies? LOL! Their other real name:


#73 Men With Hats on 09.02.09 at 12:18 pm

My new cook book is called ” Recipes For A Dead Planet “

#74 Makeorbreak on 09.02.09 at 12:28 pm,945752.shtml

#75 Chaostrology on 09.02.09 at 12:29 pm

Rock on the Independent’s movement!

#76 Denis on 09.02.09 at 12:37 pm

#56 Men With Hats on 09.02.09 at 11:04 am
“Hammer ‘em on the fact that this is the CRAP party and have nothing in common with true conservatism .
+1 … The Reform disguised as Canadian Alliance disguised as Conservative party have nothing in common with true conservatism.

Their fiscal policy is nothing more than short-sighted political flattery to try to win a few more votes and hopefully win a majority. There’s nothing close to true conservative fiscal policy being tabled by them. Their use of the Conservative “brand” sickens me.

#77 seanmhair on 09.02.09 at 12:58 pm

Garth: Never in our lives, have we donated $$ to a political candidate (even tho there have been some impressive ones over the years). Though far from your riding, we donated to your campaign the last round & though on fixed income now, may be able to scratch up a few $$s for this one. Just say the word. All the best!!

#78 Barb .. a reader in Calgary on 09.02.09 at 1:15 pm

Garth, you certainly have suddenly attracted Harper’s attention to Caledon:

#79 kc on 09.02.09 at 1:22 pm

Sure Garth for PM….. LOL.

OK can you answer ONE question? How would you propose to pay down the National Debt? And I am not talking about the 50-60B short fall of present, but the WHOLE thing? Isn’t this great country of ours in the red by over 450B? I may be on the light side here… However, If the gravy train is over we are screwed for the long run. The pigs at the trough have been there for so long that the only thing that will fix this system is to NUKE the hill and start from scratch without the top heavy (suck hole) buddy buddy system.

What would you actually do to cleanse the corruption that flows from the hill?


The debt is on its way to $600B. It can only be repaid through economic growth and proper fiscal management, or maybe the slots. — Garth

#80 Barb .. a reader in Calgary on 09.02.09 at 1:27 pm

#61 Marc I simply destroy my ballot

Jeepers Marc, how interesting you should comment. One of Harper’s written tactics is to get his Flock of tacticians to spread words and thoughts to get other sheep to “Not vote”.

What his tactic accomplishes is to make people believe there’s something good about not voting. In your suggestive, you ‘feel good’ and pretend to be justified in not voting.

What a load of crap.. Oh, I mean C.R.A.P.. as in Conservative Reform Alliance Party tactics.

People who are STUPID enough to preach “not voting”, are vile and disgusting wolves in sheep’s clothing.

The way the tactic works for Harper is that every person who doesn’t vote, is one less person to vote against him. Seems to work well for Harper. Go ahead, preach being a bad citizen, it works for Harper.

#81 ralph on 09.02.09 at 1:46 pm

Liberals won’t raise taxes: Ignatieff

I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry at that one. Of course he is going to say that if he has any hope of becoming PM. Joe Clark made that mistake.

One thing is for sure when he says he won’t raise taxes before, he will after. You can take that to the bank.

#82 jess on 09.02.09 at 1:52 pm

restrictions coming…

“Last week it was reported that Germany’s Commerzbank thinks oil prices will fall 30% if regulations that rein in speculators are passed…

Specifically, he notes how “non-commercial” players — i.e., banks, pension funds and the like — now hold 50% of the contracts on the U.S. oil futures market. That’s up from 20% in 2002.

He blames a large part of investor interest in oil futures on a 2000 law now known as the “Enron loophole.” That rule exempted banks, funds and other non-users of oil from reporting their positions on electronic markets. At the same time, proliferation of electronic exchanges took off, and is now where most oil trading takes place.


#83 pbrasseur on 09.02.09 at 1:57 pm

Ignatieff just said it: no tax hikes.

Since the liberals are lying hypocrits (remember free-trade, the GST, for older ones the wage&price control?) bank on it, there will be tax increases.

#84 Marc on 09.02.09 at 2:01 pm

#80 Barb .. a reader in Calgary on 09.02.09 at 1:27 pm

Destroying a ballot isn’t not voting. FWIW I voted for everybody. In the last federal election I voted for Dawn Black, and look at what a success that waste of time was. She sat for just under 6 months, before making an oppertunistic move to Provincial politics. So if a riding can sit vacent for 6 months, do we really need to have the representation at all? I think not. I will still do my duty and vote, but so what if it is a vote for everybody? They are all good people most likely. I am not one of the 48% of people who do not show up, and my ballot does actually count as a spoiled ballot at the ed of the day.

#85 steven rowlandson on 09.02.09 at 2:04 pm

Garth stick to educating the sheeple and doing something usefull. I seriously doubt that you are mean, nasty and tight with money enough to drag canada out of the moral and economic septic tank its in. Even if you were up to the task you would have to send the other 307 MPs home or to the guillotine to keep them from sabotaging your efforts to clean up the mess Canada is in. You would also find it nessesary to burn Canada’s laws and sack all the judges and lawyers and damned near all the blood sucking silly service to do 2 things. 1 to cut costs and 2 to prevent obstruction of corrective reforms. You would have to be absolutely ruthless in slashing expenses and obligations especially entitlement programs and subsidies. Budget wise from what ever tax revenues you could raise 45 billion for interest charges, 30 billion for debt repayment and the rest cover residual government expenses including a significant reserve for contingencies.
Social policy: If it ain’t straight and honest it ain’t legal.

Garth do you have what it takes to provide that sort of leadership?


#86 kc on 09.02.09 at 2:17 pm

The debt is on its way to $600B. It can only be repaid through economic growth and proper fiscal management, or maybe the slots. — Garth

said like a true politician… general answers with no real MEAT on it, so in other words any grade 10 student could have given that same answer…. UMMM if you spend more than you take in you have a problem.

This country just went through a BOOM cycle and now we are left eating the feathers, … The population of Canada has had smoke blown up our asses for so long about how great we have it here, when in fact, we are a debtor nation that is no different from the US of A. Relying on tomorrows children to pay for our exploits today, when in fact this countrry is still an infant. On this site we preach frugality, live with in the means etc… all good and fine untill the smoke clears and it is time for the rubber to hit the road.

Our situation will not change because we are of the “we deserve it now” generation. this includes politians. Here in BC we face “tough times” with our lie-brals budget, however, it is still a smoke and mirrors shell game. They can’t fix a leaking tub with out useing a sharp knife and cutting DEEP to route out the rot that festers, and the rot starts from the top.

“repaid through economic growth” we just had this period and look where that got us… 60 BILLION deeper in the red. During WW2 there was a cause to be in the red… How can we be so indebted with out anyone actually haveing the BALLS to say it will be painfull to cut what we owe, and here is HOW we are going to do it? China is buying our resource companies, and next they will be importing Chinese workers to work on these projects and paying them squat shit wages.

Canada has sold out.


This is the answer you get when you lead with your chin. — Garth

#87 jess on 09.02.09 at 2:18 pm

“financial literacy in this country is an embarrassment”
Take out the word literacy (dumbing down)and watch this one …

#88 greyhound on 09.02.09 at 2:31 pm

Did you see this?

#89 Men With Hats on 09.02.09 at 2:32 pm

Are Canadians still moronic enough to fall for that all that Reform crap? It’s so scary, and it appears Stephen Harper’s Reform Party thinks they can still disguise themselves and win …scary, disingenuous, control freaks who realize that by simply being two-faced, they can fool ‘just enough sheeple’ to drink grape ‘Flavor Aid’.

Agree one hundred per cent .There is no lie so outrageous that they (Con-bots) won’t use it .

#90 Jayman on 09.02.09 at 2:32 pm

Well Garth, give it your all and good luck. But if it does not work out will you consider trying to save Toronto from the Municiple Socialist Party run by Mitler and his stable of brown nosing sycophants? I guess the other option for me will be to move.

Good post today.

#91 Men With Hats on 09.02.09 at 2:37 pm

“A half-truth is the most cowardly of lies”

#92 Men With Hats on 09.02.09 at 2:40 pm

“Make the lie big, make it simple, keep saying it, and eventually they will believe it”

Adolph Hitler and Stevey

#93 Bonnie N BC on 09.02.09 at 2:43 pm

Well Garth
I hope you win the nomination. The interesting turn of events is the reaction of the NDP to Iggy’s we’re mad as hell and not going to take it anymore. (Insert growl..)

Truth be told the NDP blew the wad last year and have financial reasons not to defeat the Harper crowd.

I’m not sure there will be an election this fall unless Harper goes into hyper-partisan mode which is always possible.

Jeepers the only thing negative about you running is that Harry S may surface on your blog.

#94 Men With Hats on 09.02.09 at 3:02 pm

Jeepers the only thing negative about you running is that Harry S may surface on your blog.

Ammo is dry and waiting .

#95 Barb .. a reader in Calgary on 09.02.09 at 3:02 pm

#84 Marc,

Destroying a ballot is not voting.

You, using anecdotal nothings to justify your “non vote” and then pretending you are doing your “duty”. That is disgusting.
A citizen has one vote and it has been clear throughout history that those who ignore their duty to vote, do the greatest damage against our country.

#96 Barb .. a reader in Calgary on 09.02.09 at 3:07 pm

Bonnie N,
Sadly, Harry already resurfaced two weeks ago, begging Garth to re-open his political blog.
Check out his comment..

#97 Barb .. a reader in Calgary on 09.02.09 at 3:07 pm

Bonnie N,
Sadly, Harry already resurfaced two weeks ago, begging Garth to re-open his political blog.
Check out his comment..

#98 Rebel With A Cause on 09.02.09 at 3:10 pm

#7 Joseph

I have to agree. I grew up in Ottawa, but was way too much of a rebel to stay, and Garth, you’re clearly too outspoken (in a good way) to bother wasting your time in the political arena. We all know that higher ideals for change never amount to anything when it comes to politics. It’s all about the bottom line for those that fund the parties in power.

Ok, I’m a conspiracy theorist, but even if you’re not .. it’s still an obvious up hill battle to get anything positive done from the inside. It has to be done from the outside, which is exactly where you are right now. You’re helping folks out one person at a time with this blog. What would we do without you? :)

#99 JeffinPickering on 09.02.09 at 3:13 pm

I have a question.
Why – in the most difficult and challenging times we have faced as a country since the Great Depression – does Parliament get to go on summer vacay and do nothing but plan when/what the next power shift is? Aren’t the politician’s supposed to work for the people 365?

What jackass created the parliamentary calendar that allows this? We’ve had over 100,000 job losses since last October, and they should take a summer recess?

#100 JeffinPickering on 09.02.09 at 3:14 pm

I have a question.
Why – in the most difficult and challenging times we have faced as a country since the Great Depression – does Parliament get to go on summer vacay and do nothing but plan when/what the next power shift is? Aren’t the politician’s supposed to work for the people 365?

What jackass created the parliamentary calendar that allows this? We’ve had over 100,000 job losses since last October, and they should take a summer recess?

What on earth is a politician going to do to help you, me, or anyone else? Stay out of the fray Garth; the people who make real differences are outside of that sphere.

#101 Evangeline on 09.02.09 at 3:27 pm

(( We need to face the fact that everyone needs affordable housing and that the land must be shared with all in a responsible and sustainable manner. Housing can take many forms, but the land should belong to everyone as in the Crown owning it.))

I must be misunderstanding you, the above sounds like you don’t believe Canadians should have the right to own private property?

#102 $fromA$ia "Garths Nugget Boy" on 09.02.09 at 3:27 pm


#103 Evangeline on 09.02.09 at 3:52 pm

((So what are you actually saying Evangeline? I’d like to see mandatory courses in financial literacy and civics in high school. How many people were duped last year by the cons stating that a coalition government was treasonous? ))

I’m saying that even if civics and financial literacy were taught in schools, that won’t solve the problem. A lot of kids will still tune it out, just like they tune out politics and financial reporting on teevee and the internet. If these subjects interest them, they will seek them out themselves. Sometimes grownups just have to take personal responsibility for their mistakes; everyone makes them and making the government the skapegoat for everything that goes wrong in our lives is a bit childish imo.

((As to taking care of one’s health, what are you actually implying? Please elaborate.))

I’m implying that the government has no business telling me how many greasy fries I can eat.

#104 X on 09.02.09 at 3:54 pm

Red Robinson recently sold his North Vancouver home, and started renting in Coal Habour for $4000 per month:…523/story.html

#105 slopetester on 09.02.09 at 4:04 pm

Last Chance to Buy Gold below $1000?

Gold on the verge of breaking out big time!

What about you? Sold your gold lately? Sold your gold due to an inevitable correction coming due? Sold your gold because of a tremendous short position build up with the bullion banks? Sold your gold because the bullion banks are so smart and always right? Sold your gold because of an imminent deflationary collapse which would bring down gold prices to absurd lows of $300 or less?

Well, the list of bearish arguments goes on and on but the reality is that nothing fundamentally has ever changed. In other words, those very same fundamentals which took gold up from $250 in 2001 to almost $1000 today are still in place.

With the end of the US dollar as world’s sole reserve currency in sight gold is poised for a monster rally towards $5000 or more. As John Embry of Sprott Asset Management once said, everyone with a IQ higher than a grapefruit should admit GATA ( has a point. Obviously GFMS Chairman Philip Klapwijk fails to meet Embry’s IQ criteria since he refuses to debate GATA on grounds you shouldn’t deal with terrorists.

To the newcomers in the gold market I would say please read the fictitious conversation between a staunch gold bull and GATA supporter (GB) and a mainstream investor (MI) who isn’t so sure what to believe these days. The conversation features discussions on traditional bearish arguments for gold, gold’s monetary role, the gold suppression scheme, GATA’s birth, the blatant lies from US government regarding its gold policies, Brown/Blair’s blatant lies after announcing the sale of half of Britain’s gold in 1999, future for the US dollar, new world reserve currency, Chinese gold hoarding, etc.


#106 Evangeline on 09.02.09 at 4:15 pm

((The debt is on its way to $600B. It can only be repaid through economic growth and proper fiscal management, or maybe the slots. — Garth

very funny

#107 Bobby on 09.02.09 at 4:22 pm

For #46 What if it doesn’t

What, $520 a sq ft for a tiny condo. Are you nuts. There is a foreclosure penthouse here in Victoria for $549k sitting for sale. Never been lived in and supposedly originally listed for $900k plus. It is 1800 plus sq ft. Not a lot of buyers lined up for it.

Yes, prices do fall and do so quite fast. Just because some sales agent says it is worth $400 k doesn’t make it so.

I’d wait.

#108 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 09.02.09 at 4:29 pm

#101 Evangeline

The house is the property we own. I meant precisely what I said that the land should be a community based asset. Certainly that does not mean one could not use the land, but under the carefully considered guidelines that the PEOPLE decide is benefitial in the long term. We already have a myriad of laws regulating land use and permission is required.

Why I say this is simple…one may be able to afford the home construction, but not the land. Consider that under Provincial Law we currently have much Crown land that is leased for use. The Cottage Contry boathouses being a prime example. People do NOT own the lakes and rivers nor the land under them to build a boat house or other structure over such waters. The MNR must agree to any planned usage for all our benefits. This would eliminate the silliness that occured in Wasaga Beach over the fence last year.

This protects the water rights of all and the environment. No one can take the land and move it, nor abscound with it to heaven, so why do we have this need to ‘own’ it in the first place? Secondly, do we in fact own it? Try not paying your property taxes and see how much you own it. You do not. You are already, in effect, paying rent for using the land through the taxes.

This would also potentially eliminate the land claim disputes if all the land belonged to all Canadians including the First Nations.

Personally, I consider land ownership an outdated and archaic ideology when one considers reality. Governmnents lease land and the usage rights all the time. Consider Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Leased, not owned, by the U.S. Government. Consider all our Crown Land that belongs to the People as well. The only ones truly benefiting from ‘owning’ land are the developers and RE agents.

BTW, London just told the Americans that they need to divvy up the back taxes (fees, fines, whatever) on their Embassy. The Crown still owns that land too, regardless of what spin semantics are applied to call the TAX something else..

Obama should order US Embassy to pay c-charge

We have fought too many silly and very expensive battles over just such issues. Consider the GTA Green belt. More shenanigans have gone on with that than have been reported and the only ones benefiting are the lawyers, as usual.

In fact, Orillia, has a huge Land Claim coming to a head with the First Nations in the area.

Land claim awaits nod

What we have are people owning land that others owned before them and then insisting on making a profit from the sale of that land regardless of any actual changes or improvements. This is the predominant cost of housing in most areas, not the home construction.

The reality is that one cannot do with the land as they please. Almost everything now has a governing regulation regarding use, and those came about due to both greedy developers seeking special priviledge and abuse by people. There is no Wild West in Ontario, or for that matter most of Canada. Perhaps you recall the principles behing the Land Grant? That was the Crown granting conditional permission to use the people’s land.

The same history applies to Alberta which was derived from an agreement between the Crown and the Northwest Trading Company.

History of Alberta

The early history of Alberta is closely tied to the fur trade, and the rivalries associated with it. The first battle was between English and French traders, and often took the form of open warfare. Most of central and southern Alberta is part of the Hudson Bay watershed, and in 1670 was claimed by the English Hudson’s Bay Company (HBC) as part of its monopoly territory, Rupert’s Land. This was contested by French traders operating from Montreal, the Coureurs des bois. When France’s power on the continent was crushed after the fall of Quebec in 1759, the British HBC was left with unfettered control of the trade, and exercised its monopoly powers. This was soon challenged in the 1770s by the North West Company (NWC), a private Montreal-based company that hoped to recreate the old French trading network in the waters that did not drain to the Hudson’s Bay, such as the Mackenzie River, and waters draining to the Pacific Ocean. Many of Alberta’s cities and towns started as either HBC or NWC trading posts, including Fort Edmonton. The HBC and NWC eventually merged in 1821, and in 1870 the new HBC’s trade monopoly was abolished and trade in the region was opened to any entrepreneur. The company ceded Rupert’s Land and the North-Western Territory to the Dominion of Canada as the Northwest Territories as part of the Rupert’s Land Act 1868.

Note that the original grant by the Crown was for development of the newly discovered lands and then reverted back. The First Nations issues are separate from that particular history.

The Crown generally financed all the original exploration either directly or by Royal Commission and grants. Unlike the U.S., We did not forcibly take the land from England, we negotiated the issues peacfully, except for the French issues. That got resolved by the British defeating the French. That, too, has had long lasting repercussions that live today.

In fact, the U.S. did have to make reparations to the Crown for the original colonies. We are still making reparations to the First Nations because some Canadians broke their promise or attempted to deal unethically in their agreements.

How many millions have died in wars and poverty over this one single issue?

#109 miketheengineer on 09.02.09 at 4:46 pm

Garth et al:

We are on the edge of the cliff right now. Some thoughts on what to do:

Government downsizing:

Temporary Closure of all the following Ministries, layoff all the employees, for the max EI will give them.

1) Tourism – we are all broke or outa work, why do we need this one??? Everyone is too poor to visit Canada. I say, shut it down, lay them off.

2) Immigration – There are too many people out of work right now, why bring more in? When things get better, open the flood gates, but for now, shut it down and lay off the employees.

3) Environment – The government allowed all the factories to shut down, hence no factories making polution, I say shut it down. When the factories re-open bring them back. Buy the way, what do those people do now? Gotta be some we can layoff in this one.

4) Foreign Aide – I would stop this ASAP, due to the nature of the crisis. We gotta look after our own first. Stop the drain of cash outa this country. When things get better, turn it on.

5) Flat Tax for everyone. One line on everyone’s form, you all pay 20% flat. Make collections much easier.
No discrimination, no special clauses. Screw the RRSP’s, they don’t make no one any money anyway. (Except for Maddoff types)

Untill we tighten our belts to the maximum, our country is going to get screwed.

If we had to go to war, I seriously doubt we could put an army in place to defend the oil fields the Chinese just purchased.

I mean: Canada’s largest steel maker bought by the US and subsequently shut down. (US Steel) Hamilton.

50% of all auto parts manufacturing now gone due to the short sightedness of the government and the greediness of the big three.

I mean really, who could we get to build us Tanks? The Chinese or the Japanese. We have allowed the industrialists to sell us out to the cheapest bidder.

Soon our Chinese friends will be eating Alberta Grade A steaks, and we will be left eating rice.

Hey, but the government is always right. Go government go, spend us into a hole. I can see the fat. Can’t the rest of the country. Time to cut hard and fast or we are going to suffer the same fate as the US or worse.

Now, we can boil rice, stir fry it. Got to get some good rice cook books, and those tapes to learn foreign language. Which is the best Chinese one to learn.

That’s my rant for today. Cut it back now, hard and fast.

#110 The 'VULTURE' on 09.02.09 at 4:59 pm

Hi Garth!

I would love to see you become our minister of finance or even better our Prime Minister. You have my vote and the vote of all of my business associates, friends, peers etc.

Any help that you may need, I will help you the best I can.

Best of luck.



I was part of a political fundraiser not to long ago. Raised some big money for the political party. Here is how it worked. You come as a guest of honour at a house party and every guest has to pay, say $200.00, each to attend. They get to hear you speak in person and ask questions after your speech. Meet and greet with you as well.

#111 Future Expatriate on 09.02.09 at 5:24 pm

Garth… forget Canada. Please run for the President of the United States. You will win, believe me… the last guy that won was Kenyan, Indonesian, AND an idiot…

#112 Dawn in Calgary on 09.02.09 at 5:25 pm

There’s no cliff, didn’t you hear? Calgary’s housing market is in full recovery mode!

Article quite obviously not open to comments — can’t have reality intrude upon delusion.

#113 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 09.02.09 at 5:54 pm

#109 miketheengineer

We still need the Ministry of Environment or things will go totally off the cliff under No-Science Harper. We could, however, get rid of StatsCan whereas the only stats Harper cares about are from his pollster, eh?

As to tanks we buy those from Germany, they are called Leopards.

We can also get rid of Harper’s stylist and entourage. I heard you can hear them coming for kilometres from the sucking sound!

We can also rid the costs of the colour laser printers the PMO is using to printing phoney money on to fund all the hockey rinks and other non-essential ‘projects’ (Commonly known in the U.S. as PORK!) to garner votes from the Sheeple.

We can also auction off the leather chairs in the HoC. Apparently they are very comfortable based on the number of MP’s who sleep through sessions. Put them in the homeless shelters where some good use will come of them and replace them with hard wood benches. Perhaps that’ll keep the MP’s awake. Besides, the homeless can get some needed quality rest and become employable. Oh, and get rid of the limos and drivers. Let them take their chances walking or on a bicycle. It’ll do them good to get back in ‘touch’ with the people.

Just a few ‘essential changes’ I can think of before running to a meeting.

#114 jess on 09.02.09 at 6:06 pm

professional pension fund skimmers
The SEC attorney who failed, despite numerous red flags, to catch Bernie Madoff’s colossal fraud received the highest possible performance rating from the agency — citing her “ability to understand and analyze the complex issues of the Madoff investigation”

#115 JO on 09.02.09 at 6:07 pm

109 – you’re on the right track. Good comment. Eventually, the gov’t will need to do the only option that works: deep cuts in gov’t services that are NOT required, and using that to make deep cuts in income taxes for individuals, and small business/corps. The tax system needs to be dramatically simplified so that the average Canadian does not need more than a 1 or 2 page T1 jacket to file their taxes. Taxes should shift toward consumption over time.

Before we can get here, we need to do everything possible to reduce the amount of debt in the economy as fast as possible. This will happen no matter what. Unfortunately, the clowns in power have desperately been doing everything in power to grow the enormous mountain of debt. They have been lucky they found enough fools to take on the debt at artificially low rates / excessive amounts thanks to taxpayer backed programs like CMHC/CDIC. All cash to corp and special interest groups NEEDS TO STOP. The only economic focus of gov’t should be improving EI and focussing on re training people.

However, we are in the early stages of a massive, global de-leveraging which will see the amount of debt taken down a lot. Once the amount of credit contracts, the quasi ponzi scheme that is our financial system/economy breaks down. The by product of this is collapsing asset values and incomes that drop.

Garth, yes you should run. But we do need a new party. Maybe a contemporary libertarian, or Canadian Freedom party ?

I see many comments that seem to want more gov’t involvment in our lives. How ? They are the entity most responsible for getting us into this. So are greedy borrowers. Heaven help us if the NDP win at the Federal level. Interestingly, many nations in Europe have started moving away from parties that favour more intervention in the economy/people’s lives. After many years of excessive spending and bloated gov’t, people there have started waking up to the fact that gov’t intervention is the main problem (along with their sidekick central banks, and large commercial banks).

We need a new party.

#116 CalgaryRocks on 09.02.09 at 6:15 pm

How about this for a solution to the retirement ‘problem’. If you can’t retire better get to work. Ok. Wow, I think I got the hang of this, where can I sign up for this MP job? I heard you only need to ‘work’ 6 years before you get your lifetime retirement package.

#117 CalgaryRocks on 09.02.09 at 6:36 pm

One of my wife’s friends just sold her house in NW Calgary for $330K. After all her bills, she is homeless. She can only afford $700 a month rent. So she and her 3 kids will be living at the shelter downtown. has 39 listings for 2 bedrooms at 700$ or less in Calgary. Is your friend a junkie perhaps?

#118 saanichtonian on 09.02.09 at 6:38 pm

The debt is on its way to $600B. It can only be repaid through economic growth and proper fiscal management, or maybe the slots. — Garth

It is not mathematically possible to pay off the federal and provincial debts of Canada.

The BofC figures for July point out that there is a a total of about 53.73 Bilion dollars of bank notes in circulation. (

That’s it, all the canadian currency that there is.

Everything else referred to as money is actually debt, created from thin air through loans from banks that have a total fractional reserve of about $4 billion. The total debt in Canada is approaching $2.500 Billion (Federal~$600B, Provincial ~$500B personal and other~$1,300B).

Last year, just the compound interest paid on the federal debt was about $34.5B.
This didn’t pay any debt down.
This didn’t pay for any social programs.

Because the interest was never created to pay on the original loans, the interest must be borrowed, at interest.

The interest becomes an increasingly large proportion of the outstanding debt, and the only final payment is in hard assets (like your house).

People talk of the Liberals paying down the federal deficit and debt. What they did was shift the ever increasing debt to the provinces, along with the interest payments.

There is still only one taxpayer.

If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of their money, first by inflation and then by deflation, the banks and corporations that will grow up around them (around the banks), will deprive the people of their property until their children will wake up homeless on the continent their fathers conquered.

Thomas Jefferson

“Banking was conceived in iniquity and was born in sin.
The Bankers own the earth. Take it away from them,
but leave them the power to create deposits,
and with the flick of the pen they will
create enough deposits to buy it back again.
However, take it away from them, and
all the great fortunes like mine
will disappear and they ought to disappear, for
this would be a happier and better world to live in.
But, if you wish to remain the slaves of Bankers
and pay the cost of your own slavery,
let them continue to create deposits.”

Sir Josiah Stamp
(1880-1941) President of the Bank of England in the 1920’s

“The government should create, issue, and circulate all the currency and credits needed to satisfy the spending power of the government and the buying power of consumers. By adoption of these principles, the
taxpayers will be saved immense sums of interest. Money will cease to be master and become the servant of humanity.”

Abraham Lincoln

“Once a nation parts with the control of its currency and credit, it matters not who makes the nations laws. Usury, once in control,will wreck any nation.
Until the control of the issue of currency and credit is restored to government and recognized as its most sacred responsibility, all talk of the sovereignty of parliament and of democracy is idle and futile.”

William Lyon Mackenzie King
(1874-1950) Prime Minister of Canada

Money frees you from doing things you dislike. Since I dislike doing nearly everything, money is handy.

Groucho Marx

#119 charliegosurf on 09.02.09 at 6:51 pm

nice guillotine man….

need a megasize model who would be more efficient!!!

and then the boers queen of the land of Eng could do the honor, and disapear with style with most corp n bank executive, realtords n such…

no more political parties, just citizen who represents their neighbours

and LOVE, lots of it…………………………..tabarnak

#120 john m on 09.02.09 at 6:52 pm

Your the Best Garth,you bring hope! I am not in your riding but will offer what support i can. There is no hope for our country under the Harper administration IMO.

#121 Libertarian on 09.02.09 at 7:01 pm

I enjoy your blog immensely and for the most part agree with you on the “re” issues. However politically, you being a Liberal and most other people posting on this blog that think the gov has the answers I would say most loudly, THE GOVERNMENT IS THE PROBLEM NOT THE SOLUTION. Having said that I would like to suggest that the only form of sensible gov is a LIBERTARIAN Government.
What is a Libertarian? and I quote
“To put it simply, Libertarians believe that you have the right to live
your life as you wish, without the government interfering — as long
as you don’t violate the rights of others. Politically, this means
Libertarians favor rolling back the size and cost of government, and
eliminating laws that stifle the economy and control people’s personal
Well I’m on the subject of gov, most sheeple like to bash the Harper gov cause that seems to be the popular thing to do, and what do you expect from a liberal leaning medea. People are chastising his gov for the huge run up in spending, hence the huge deficit. What most people forget is Harper was against stimulus spending but was forced into spending money we didn’t have, or be brought down by the infamous “Gang of Three”. His mistake was he chose personal power over what he perceived as being best for Canada. In short you can’t spend your way to prosperity, something the Libs or the NDP haven’t figured out. I suspect that history will again repeat itself and OH I think it’s going to get extremely nasty this time round.
Further more how can a minoity gov be wrecking the country, where is the “Gang of three”….silence. When the opposition blames a current minority gov for the way things are governed they unwittingly are pointing fingers at themselves cause they have the power to give them the boot or make them compromise.
If Harper being in a minority position is doing such a bad job and getting away with it, that makes him (intellectually) the best one capable of governing…no
Iggy (Liberals) and the NDP are only concerned about personal power and dam the consequences.
We are going to have another foolish election cause politicians are more concerned with their own personal gain than what’s good for the country. sooo sad

#122 charliegosurf on 09.02.09 at 7:04 pm

than that n-van jr mouthy character, could harvest the heads and tell them the future…

he could pilled them up on the british properties, in the gated land of fake Azur, waItin for his next assesment, he could help be the gateway of n-america cranium.

he could also welcome in his paradise the chindia’$ populace to discuss ways of making his dream come true, only to figure that continental mecca’s are obselete ourdays. lol

#123 Industrial Guy on 09.02.09 at 7:09 pm

The main stream press is reporting this evening that ….. Federal Finance Minister Flaherty believes economies have indeed stabilized, but that is largely as a result of public sector stimulus, and central bank policies that encourage borrowing with low interest rates.

WOW! So Flaherty is finally saying what we all know. This “recovery” is a charade…. a hoax … a sham …. the economy would basically collapse without massive Government spending and low interest rates.

OK, Mr. Minister … Unlike the Government of Canada, the average Canadian does not have an unlimited credit card to spend with. Once the credit limit is used up ….. what’s next? Disaster? If we all run out of spending money unemployment will jump higher. So now you’re maxed out on credit because the Government waved the lure of low rates before you. Oh yeah … you just lost you’re job.

If this is what our Finance Minister thinks is smart economic policy, I would hate to see what he thinks bad policy looks like. He created a Greater Fools recovery and lots of Canadians swallowed it ….hook, line and sinker …. Now I’m certain a real economic Depression is just around the corner.

#124 Men With Hats on 09.02.09 at 7:31 pm

#102 $fromA$ia “Garths Nugget Boy” on 09.02.09 at 3:27 pm


Tin foil !

#125 Chris L. on 09.02.09 at 7:35 pm

You run Liberal then switch independent. Simple. Both parties are messed up, but I’d rather less taxes hence Conservative…but nowadays it all means nothing. I’d vote Green, but what’s the point, plus they still have so many things backwards anyway. They need to focus on health of the earth, not greenhouse gases. Pollution, not global warming. Pollution is real, global warming…who knows. This is what spoils the movement. Toxic chemicals, real life solution to problems, not non-sense and tree hugging, but rather making the world a better place for humans. This includes biodiversity and greenspaces, less urban sprawl and so forth. Places for gardens, chickens and local foods. So many problems, no one to solve them.

#126 Men With Hats on 09.02.09 at 8:23 pm

Hardy,har,har, the reno tax credit isn’t even approved yet. And oh yeah, most people don’t know that in order to qualify for the credit you have to owe the Gov’t money at the end of the year depending on your income tax file, if you owe them its than given back to you as a credit but if the Gov’t owes you than nothing is really given back to you.

Fugure it out. Just because you spend the max dosen’t mean you’ll get $1350 back. What the credit is for is a reduction or a write off IF YOU OWE CRA MONEY. I’m an accountant and have read this bill and understand EXACTLY what it means and most of you out there that think you’re getting ANY money back are dreaming. The way Harper worded this bill only helps the rich that did renos, not the ordinary Joe’s and Jane’s. It’s a tax credit,NOT A TAX REBATE, so once again Harper has pulled the sSdummies .
Barb.Herb and I blogged on this weeks ago .
You were warned .Delusional cretins .


#127 D from London, ON on 09.02.09 at 8:45 pm


You running for MP again can be compared to the classic “The Ingenious Hidalgo Don Quixote of La Mancha”.


Garth Turner as Don Quitoxe

The Canadian People as Aldonza/Dulcinea

Your Blog Dogs as the faithful Sancho Panza

Sometimes ya gotta do the right thing, regardless of how it looks to other people.

What do you need from us? It appears from the posts that we are overwhelmingly behind your quest.

#128 Jody on 09.02.09 at 8:57 pm

All this talk about voting and not voting, who cares, it is your God given right to do whatever you want to your ballot. I have no doubt that if people were formally allowed to write “none of the above,” on their ballot and have it count that “none of the above,” would win every riding. Every party is the same, willing to hold a gun up to my head to reward their friends and punish their enemies, thats all politics is. Here is an idea, get rid of the federal government, they provide you with nothing (let’s now hear from all the retards about how they are protecting us from the commies or the terrorists.)but get the majority of your taxes while municipalities go without, reverse the tax burden so the majority goes towards municipalities. Politicians are scum, pure and simple, I’m not a peasent and this ain’t medeival England, I don’t need a “leader,” or a “ruler.” The “ruling party,” really? I don’t think so.

There was a reason why the founding fathers of the US wrote the constitution to “limit,” the powers of government, not “grant,” rights, and the “right,” to bear arms figured prominently for a reason. Yes, trust the government, trust the civil servant, they are the best of the best, the brightest of the bright, the cream of the crop, Jesus H Christ, I swear to God if I squint hard enough I can see a halo over their heads.

If you insist on using the government to hold a gun to my head to take my money because you don’t have the balls to do it yourself then at least limit government to cops, courts and roads, that’s it. Get rid of CPP, EI, welfare, the post office, the Communist Brodcasting Company etc. etc. etc.

#129 CalgaryRocks on 09.02.09 at 8:58 pm

#117 Men With Hats on 09.02.09 at 8:23 pm
Hardy,har,har, the reno tax credit isn’t even approved yet. And oh yeah, most people don’t know that in order to qualify for the credit you have to owe the Gov’t money at the end of the year depending on your income tax file, if you owe them its than given back to you as a credit but if the Gov’t owes you than nothing is really given back to you.

Fugure it out. Just because you spend the max dosen’t mean you’ll get $1350 back. What the credit is for is a reduction or a write off IF YOU OWE CRA MONEY. I’m an accountant and have read this bill and understand EXACTLY what it means and most of you out there that think you’re getting ANY money back are dreaming. The way Harper worded this bill only helps the rich that did renos, not the ordinary Joe’s and Jane’s. It’s a tax credit,NOT A TAX REBATE, so once again Harper has pulled the sSdummies .

Haha, you’re an accountant my ass. What a liar. You don’t even know the difference between a tax credit and a tax deduction. What a joker. You’ve already been proven wrong by a real accountant. Get lost dummy.

#130 charliegosurf on 09.02.09 at 9:02 pm

and than west van would have to build water fence to make themselves secure and keep hungry desperate seal away…

and for sure, you need to stay away from the choosen one sweet colonial posse$ion and banned beach access without a passport!

oooohhh my, nudity and human needs are not, bon
chic bon genre!!!

what a nut$y world goin down, rollin n rollin

#131 MB on 09.02.09 at 9:14 pm

Dear Garth,

Nice work getting the $7M rink for the Caledon riding!

You haven’t even got the nomination and already your influence is being felt in Caledon. I guess that’s what you mean when you say, “standing up for principle is always a win” (paraphrase).

I was so disgusted after you lost Halton that I haven’t really followed federal politics since, but if you need any help in the upcoming campaign just let me know.

It would be an honour to work on behalf of a principled fellow like you Garth.


#132 Men With Hats on 09.02.09 at 9:27 pm

Dropped line :
Once again Harpo has pulled Sheeple wool over the sheeples eyes .

#133 Rural Rick on 09.02.09 at 9:28 pm

Go for it. It is bound to be interesting and it will get you out of the house.
A blade of grass can change the course of a river.

#134 Men With Hats on 09.02.09 at 9:32 pm

All this unsolicited advice from morons .
“Run as an independent ” “Don’t run as an independent ”
Sp glad Garth ignores you idiots .

#135 Nostradamus Le Mad Vlad on 09.02.09 at 9:35 pm

#121 Libertarian at 7:01 pm — “. . . THE GOVERNMENT IS THE PROBLEM . . .”. Hallelujah! It doesn’t really matter which party holds the reins, but having a STV, rather than first-past-the-post system (to me) does make sense.

Holding politicians accountable — if they clearly state this or that WILL happen — and don’t do any follow-up, after a year replace them with the next one who was closest to being elected, but didn’t quite make it.

Don’t have to fork out taxpayers’ money for yet another pointless election.
Repugnantly astonishing news, as reported in The Daily Mash from Limeyland.

The Mash was supposed to be a spoof paper, but the m$m took that title as they have continually proven to be quality bird-lining paper and, better yet, training for shredding machines.

Now that The Mash is above the m$m, this — — along with The Sun reveals that Brown has no chance of being re-elected. Personally, I still favor the now-defunct Monster Raving Loony Party. Maybe they can reincarnate as the CPC here?
May be the start of something bigger. Comment by — — “Area agencies receive crowd-control training.”

“The government knows a confrontation is coming.” — Especially now that Texas secessionists are quite vocal about what is happening in their state.
A chart, but good to check the dates — 1800 to 2009 gives a clear indication of which way the greenback is headed. —

#136 Jmack on 09.02.09 at 9:40 pm

“The deficit will be 495 million maximum”

Gordon Campbell.

If you missed a budget number in business by 6 times what you predicted, would you still have a job?

#137 BigAl (Original) on 09.02.09 at 10:04 pm

I second #90
Would much prefer to see Garth in municipal politics. More chance to be more effective. Even provincial as mpp. But federal is too much towing the line. Not that that doesn’t exist at these other levels of government, but less so, and a better place for a maverick.

#138 angrylittlefella on 09.02.09 at 10:05 pm

Dear Barb,

Your pushy, arrogant, insulting, bullying, self important rants are common among people who enjoy imposing their will on others. Let me get this straight, Marc is not doing his duty as a “citizen” by not voting for a party he does not believe in, within a system of politics that he does not feel represents him? You, on the other hand, are completely justified in attempting to shame him and others into compliance. You and others who use this same tactic should be ashamed of yourselves. God forbid he should choose to vote and as a result a tyrant like you is elected to represent him .

yours truly


#139 taxpayer like you on 09.02.09 at 10:12 pm

108 Bill – great post. I just have to add some things.

The link you gave was for a settlement of some alledgedly illegally “surrendered” lands. Claims are typically based on the following actions of the crown:

1) failing on a money obligation
2) violating the indian Act
3) failing to meet treaty obligations
4) unauthorized transfers of lands

Historically, the french did not recognize aboriginal “title”
to the land. The British, upon defeating the french, proclaimed that treaties must be reached with the first nations before settlement of lands (royal proclomation c.
1763). Treaties were indeed reached over much of Canada as settlement spreaded west.

Aboriginal title is based on occupation and use of the land
since “time immemorial” as determined by the court. The
problem in BC is treaties were not negotiated, leaving
basically all crown land open to claim. Thus, your statement that making all land crown will satisfy these claims is incorrect. The aboriginal title preceeds the
crown title.

#140 d h on 09.02.09 at 10:18 pm

It does not matter who governs or who is at the trough.
As Diefenbaker said. “A primeminister is only there to through the shit at.”

#141 Barb .. a reader in Calgary on 09.02.09 at 10:53 pm


Dear “angrylittlefella”,

Let me first say Mr. Flaherty, I’m flattered you would address me, but your insulting comment says it all about you.

But secondly, why do you have your shirt sleeves rolled up doing tricks so late in the evening? I thought you left this sort of stuff to Mr. Finley?

Oh wait, Doug’s going to be a Senator so maybe he’s on hiatus from whipping up FUD.

LOL, Harper-trolls crack me up.

#142 angrylittlefella on 09.03.09 at 1:02 am

Dear Barbara,

Pretty aggressive for someone who’s shite don’t stink.
I remain unconvinced of your righteousness.



#143 taxpayer like you on 09.03.09 at 1:21 am

126 Hats. If you’re an accountant, you’re doing a poor job of explaining this tax credit. And you’ve read the bill, but it hasnt been passed yet? So what you’ve been
reading isnt yet law. Interesting. I would appreciate a
link for reference. I’ve googled the topic, but you get
pages and pages of stuff.

Basically, a tax credit recognizes certain expenditures
as having had tax paid at the lowest marginal fed tax
rate – 15%. We have a basic personal amount ($9k or so), plus others for age, medical expenses etc. These are “non-refundable” in that if the credits exceed tax owing for the year, you will not get money back. But if you have tax deducted at source, you should get money back.

Where the trick lies is getting the $10K to pay for the reno. Well if you worked extra or OT to get it, guess what? You’re almost certainly being taxed at a higher
rate on that realized income than the 15% credit. Advantage CRA.

And an accountant should know that.

#144 Mike (Authentic) on 09.03.09 at 2:41 am

#112 Dawn in Calgary “Re: Calgary Herald RE spin story -There’s no cliff, didn’t you hear? Calgary’s housing market is in full recovery mode!”

If you read between the lines Calgary SFH sales are down 46% in the last 3 months alone. Some recovery!


#145 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 09.03.09 at 7:01 am

#139 taxpayer like you

Thanks for the comment and information. Perhaps, considering the never ending spaghetti bowl of legalities involving land claims, the U.S. had the better approach? They simply told the Native Americans what they would get, told them to live there, and if they disagreed they shot ’em.

Seriously, we have a much better approach, however, the problem has been and will remain those who refuse to negotiate in good faith and honesty.

The claims some bands make are ludicrus in the light of modern archaeological and DNA knowledge, but the lawyers still get the bucks. Regardless, they will go on it seems.

#146 Men With Hats on 09.03.09 at 10:30 am

#142 angrylittlefella on 09.03.09 at 1:02 am

Not to worry Barb . Angry and little’s entire anatomy is small .

#147 Barb .. a reader in Calgary on 09.03.09 at 10:48 am

#142 angrylittlefella

Oh ‘angry’ ….you are so transparent. Your agenda is pretty obvious for readers on Garth’s site. Old ladies like me have worked hard, spread kindness, learned about life, believe in telling the truth and believe in giving back. People like you, well, you just showed up to dump on me and paint me as someone I’m not. That says it all about you.

#148 Barb .. a reader in Calgary on 09.03.09 at 1:03 pm

#146 Men With Hats

And, Men, isn’t it all so reminiscent of the exact tactics that we all witnessed over and over again which the Harperites used on Garth’s political blog. Those little Con Trolls never left, they just disguised themselves and kept an eye on what Garth is saying. In a way it’s great that they are so unwittingly transparent, and so afraid of the truth, it makes them easy to spot, and luckily they don’t realize that.

#149 PVC on 09.03.09 at 2:20 pm

all blog dogs qualify

The when will Garth throw in the towel on gold contest.

I’m offering a 1oz Gold bar to the person who comes the closest in price when Garth starts recommending gold.

I say he’ll start pumping it at $1750.

I recommended gold in my book ‘After the Crash,’ published in January. Please mail me my bar. Ta. — Garth

#150 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 09.03.09 at 4:06 pm

#148 Barb .. a reader in Calgary

You’ve got that Right! (All puns intended) BUT, where is your ‘proof’ (did you get a demotion? LOL)

#151 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 09.03.09 at 4:08 pm

#149 PVC


#152 Computer Dude on 09.03.09 at 4:53 pm


Run for the Greens.

You get a Name Brand.

They get a recognized name and instant gravitas on government, finance, and sustainability. And a book of squirrel recipes.

#153 Barb the proof reader on 09.03.09 at 5:05 pm

You are too funny.

(and I figured I’d drop the proofreader part sometimes .. just for fun and variety sake)

:) I demoted myself!

#154 angrylittlefella on 09.03.09 at 6:09 pm

To my dearest Barbie doll,

You have given new meaning to the words blah, blah, blah… May I suggest a solution? Allow others to make their own choices and arrive at their own conclusions rather than your preferred method of pummeling them into submission with your incessantly flapping tongue.
As for, “Old ladies like me have worked hard, spread kindness, learned about life, believe in telling the truth and believe in giving back.” Though I’m sure you believe this to be true I have seen little evidence of it, often perception and reality differ greatly.

As a side note, I am amazed to hear that I actually have an agenda. I must be important.
Also, to imply that you “tell the truth”, and that I am “afraid of the truth” implies that you are aware of some absolute truth. Omniscience must be extremely rewarding.

May all of your dreams come true


(my apologies to Garth)

#155 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 09.04.09 at 10:13 am

#153 Barb the proof reader


Have a GREAT Labour Day Weekend, eh!

#156 Barb .. a reader in Calgary on 09.04.09 at 2:16 pm

#154 “angrey little”,

Wow, what a vicious and meaningless comment for you to make.

You purely fabricate things about people! I can see Garth will be keeping an eye on you.

Do you always come to blogs to horribly attack people and manufacture insults? You fully represent the ugly side of politics. You are trying to control ordinary people like me by viciously insulting me for no reason.

#157 Barb .. a reader in Calgary on 09.04.09 at 2:47 pm

Here’s a news item, about why posers like ‘angry little “man” come to blogs to insult others with any tactic they can make up..

The news item is about organized tactics, one involving trying to interfere and block out conversation and communication. The uncalled-for and untoward attacks above at #138, 142, and #154 are a tactic used infamously by the Republicans is now calling for their flock to shout down any one who, heaven forbid, might ask a valid question about healthcare. In other words, attack anyone on the ‘left’.

The so-called ‘commenter’ at #138, 142 and #154 reminds us all of the ignorant few who would loudly shout down the disabled women in the wheelchair:

Disabled woman heckled for supporting health care reform

#158 angrylittlefella on 09.04.09 at 3:58 pm

And there it is folks,

The magic reversal, immediately followed by a couple of shots delivered while retreating.
If you trace our postings back to their origin you may realize that I am reacting to an attack made by little old you.

All of the assumptions you have made about my politics are, in my opinion, incorrect. That was kinda the whole point. I could also make a number of assertions about you which may or may not prove to contain any degree of “truth.”

As for Garth Turner, I have a great deal of respect for his opinions and am grateful for the information he provides.

Here’s lookin at you kid.


#159 Barb .. a reader in Calgary on 09.04.09 at 5:02 pm


Too bad you didn’t actually read my comments.

I made a point that it’s known historically about people who don’t vote, since we know what apathy and whipping up apathy can do to a democracy (just look at the U.S.), and now people who encourage others to not vote.. shameful.. it’s one of the saddest things that ever happened to democracy.

You have chosen to incorrectly read what I wrote and to pop in and slander me. You have chosen to do a personal attack on me. That’s your way. If you re-read my comments you might figure out that I’ve done none of what you say — and that makes your slanderous attack all the more untoward.. and obvious.

Time to bury this, kids. — Garth

#160 angrylittlefella on 09.04.09 at 5:10 pm

Fair enough Garth.

#161 Barb .. a reader in Calgary on 09.04.09 at 5:26 pm

Thanks for the bug spray Garth, much appreciated.

#162 Dan in Victoria on 09.04.09 at 10:08 pm

Slash the finanical barriers to college and university.That brought tears to my eyes,what if,what if?How much diffrent things could have been for me.Keep plugging away Garth,hopefully it will help someone.On a side note I was watching Chek-TV tonight and we are seeing families arrive from Ontario looking for a better life,Parents,Three teenagers and a baby on the way,looking for work,looking for hope….Living in tents….Is this what Canada is coming too?Wake up Canada this is not right.

#163 Manitoban on 09.05.09 at 6:41 am

Garth Blog
Starbucks Epiphany
September 1st, 2009 — Book Updates 162 Comments.
“As I sat amid the crumbs of a long-forgotten Cranberry-lemon-tofu muffin and updated comments to this blog, I was joined by a familiar face from my dark past. “Hey,” he said, and sat. It was one of the brightest star economists in the canyon’s monetary and fiscal firmament. He had come to talk politics

“Wrong one to ask,” I offered. “I’m just a guy who doesn’t quit.”

He laughed and left. Incredulous.

Garth: was this your launch of your new political blog?? I still think you are too early.
I know my friends think so too They would not thank me for recommending reading this particular blog or it’s 162 comments so far.
Most are looking for the “Political blog” when it comes but are not ready for the paid hacks yet, and this appeared to be an invitation.

When I get political, you’ll know. And it will not be here. — Garth