I am responding to the issues raised in Selby Quinn’s letter; my response is not based on partisan politics but on reality. The NDP’s philosophy is socialist. The tenets of this ideology are based on the assumption that the government needs to put policies in place that would redistribute wealth. However, if you study the history of countries where socialist principles have been entirely applied those countries have failed.
If you doubt me just google Venezuela, this is a country that is rich in natural resources but right now their people are starving.
The first thing the NDP did when they came into power was disband the flat tax that Albertans paid and impose a progressive tax. They then proceeded to apply a higher tax to businesses, and then following this they went after the oil industry. Then came the largest tax increase ever imposed on the people of Alberta – the carbon tax. Despite all these tax increases on Albertans they have managed to accumulate $56 billion in debt, and this debt is projected to increase to about $96 billion by 2020. In the 1990’s the price of oil fell to $10 dollars a barrel and the debt did not reach these levels.
I am always amazed that the first thing the socialists suggest is that Alberta needs to shut down its oil industry – do these people know that before oil was discovered in Alberta that this province was dirt poor? Why should Alberta be ashamed of its oil industry? Ontario does not apologize for its car manufacturing industry; in fact that industry has been propped up by both the federal and provincial governments in times of economic downturn. Let us not forget Bombardier in Quebec, they are not ashamed of that industry because it brings high paying jobs to their province. Both of these industries produce products that use Alberta oil. In fact if Canada would develop its oil resources to its fullest this nation would be energy independent and we would not be held hostage by the vagaries of oil prices on the world market. Instead we buy oil from countries that hate Canada and given the chance they would harm us.
With regard to the drug and opioid crisis there is not enough money in the world to fix this situation. The fact about addiction is that human beings make choices because God gave them a free will and sometimes the choices we make have terrible outcomes. In reality the health care budget of a country or province is finite and if the funds are diverted to address one issue then it means that there will be less money available to provide care for children with leukemia or people with cardiac or cancer issues – none of which these people chose.
History will mark 2015 as the year the NDP’s socialist agenda demolished the Alberta Advantage. Years of little public debt, relatively low taxes and business friendly policies all went down the drain and that is the reality.