My political philosophy has three core beliefs: fiscal conservatism, social progressivism and Canadian nationalism. I will devote a blog entry to each. In this blog I will briefly discuss why I am a fiscal conservative.
Fiscal conservatives advocate balanced budgets, lower taxes, paying down the national debt and avoiding deficit spending. All of these things I advocate but to varying degrees. Different economic circumstances also dictate that the emphasis on individual aspects of conservative fiscal policy may change over time. I believe a good political philosophy should guide policy making, but not to the point of rigidly dictating doctrine without regard to circumstances.
Balancing the federal budget is important primarily because deficits are financed by borrowing money and adding to the national debt. Interest charges paid to service the national debt take away billions of dollars each year that could be used for social programs, building infrastructure, paying down the national debt and lowering taxes. The federal government will balance the budget in 2015 and projects that after six years of balanced budgets and paying down debt that over 9 billion dollars in interest charges will be saved. Future generations should not have to pay for the overspending of previous generations. It is not fair to our children and grandchildren.
Since the shocks to the world economy in 2008 and 2009 the federal government found that it was absolutely necessary to run significant deficits to provide stimulus to the economy. The emphasis was placed on lowering taxes and prudent government spending to keep the economy growing. These policies worked. Despite having less per capita deficit spending than any other country in the G7, Canada’s economic growth was higher and our rate of unemployment was lower than these other countries. Our Conservative government chose the right policies for the time and implemented them exceptionally well. Since 2010 our deficits are shrinking dramatically and our economy, especially in the area of jobs, has been growing steadily.
Lower taxes are an important part of fiscal conservatism. People are entitled to the benefits of their labours without the government reaching into their wallets and taking any more money than is necessary. Families should have enough net income after taxes to provide for the education of their children and save for a comfortable and happy retirement. For businesses and entrepreneurs higher taxes often take the incentive away from investment and job creation.
I was at a Liberal meeting back in 2012 where the Liberal candidate boldly proclaimed that “We are all fiscal conservatives.” I wish that was true. During the election next year pay careful attention to the platforms of the parties. When you see the specifics undoubtedly only the Conservatives will be the one party with the real commitment and the concrete policies to keep our books in the black and taxes fair and reasonable. That’s why I am a fiscal conservative and seek to be a candidate for the Conservative Party of Canada.