Lost in the shuffle

It’s kind of funny but economic data tends to get released in clusters. Today we had three more variables from the Census and that is likely what will fill the NB newspaper pages tomorrow. But I don’t see a whole lot that is interesting. We still have out migration. We still have very low levels of immigration. The bilingualism and language data is trending about the same.

But this report shouldn’t be overlooked. It’s the results of the international student test program and as in 2003 and in 2000, New Brunswick is either last in Canada or second last for every major metric in this study – science, math and reading.

I don’t know about you but that’s why I have become increasingly cynical. Bernard Lord got up on TV and gesticulated passionately that he was going to raise our test scores to well above the national average – in the top three among the provinces in Canada. And now he’s off sucking up to the PM and our education performance hasn’t budged an inch.

Shawn Graham has come along and he is going to make our education system go from “worst to first” or some such crap.

How about a friggin’ Premier that will promise last to second last? Or maybe inching up to the national average? This is just nuts.

Old gullible New Brunswickers. Dangle a 10 or 20 year plan in front of us and we’ll go away and drink Tim Horton’s coffee for 7-8 years. Then we’ll wake up and boot your arse out of office and buy the next guy’s song and dance. You’ll go off to Harper’s Court and we are left with squat.

I don’t know about you but I am tired of being at the arse end of the North American economy on just about every economic and social metric. And I am even more tired of listening to the crap coming out of polticians’ pieholes on this stuff.

Here’s an idea. How about a politician that gets into office and makes no promises at all. Nothing. We’re just going to ride on, take our transfer cheques and drink Alpine all night long.

I might just vote for that guy.

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0 Responses to Lost in the shuffle

  1. NB taxpayer says:

    LMAO!!! That was a good Alpine comment.

    Here’s a stretch, maybe our opposition parties (if they actually stood for something) could do some serious work regarding policy instead of just playing their constituents in a way that will make them hate the government in power. Because if you do the latter, it means once you have convinced them [citizens] that the other guys are the anti-Christ, it leaves you with a weekend or so to do what you should have been doing the whole time while out of government…that being, coming up with a few very good marketable ideas brought to you by your friendly neighbourhood party members. Last time I looked, the opposition party barely put any good measures forward with regards to policy at their respective conventions. Unless you call recouping some cash from a floor crosser solid policy for NBers on the street.

    And for the record, their last convention before that barely delt with any policy at all…just the thwarting of democracy by ramming through Hooten’s candidacy in Saint John Harbour. Nice fellas. Vey nice!

  2. Anonymous says:

    Fantastic post. Great reading and reflective of the informed, albeit minority, public.

    Now that you have that off your chest, get back to business because we cannot afford to wait 20 years to see another plan fail.

    PS What would you think about a private NB economic development fund? If there are really so many passionate NBer’s, maybe they would donate money to a private fund, free of politics, that is focused on meaningful, strategic economic development. If it could somehow have tax advantages, many taxpayers would donate just to keep their money away from political wasteland. Perhaps if enough momentum were started in the right direction, the public, and therefore the politcians, would wake up and try to jump on board.

  3. David Campbell says:

    I may not agree with all your ideas, but I like the cut of your jib, NB Taxpayer. You should run for the Tories. They could use a good man (or woman).

  4. David Campbell says:

    I believe that economic development (that being the process of doing stuff to make your community or province more attractive for business investment that brings good jobs and contributes to the tax base) is really a community-wide responsibility and the government is the agent that is supposed to represent the whole community. The rest of us represent our own little wedge of the pie and we may altruistically (is that a word?) support various kinds of community development activities.

    So I think a private fund is tricky. I know that several of the economic development agencies have private funding – I think Enterprise Greater Moncton gets a few hundred grand from the private sector each year.

    Ultimately, your operative phrase is “free of politics”. I actually believe that politics can and is holding back economic development.

    So, the NSBI model, while not perfect, has been depoliticized somewhat by having a private sector board and relative autonomy to fulfill its business plan.

  5. mikel says:

    I’d agree on everything but the sort of ‘elitist’ comments that come from people who seem to think they know something everybody else doesn’t.

    Be comforted that I’ve been around facebook, CBC, virtually anywhere that New Brunswickers can post and have seen far more critics of Graham than this would portend. I have seen a very few ‘give the guy a chance’, but of course they may just be liberal party members.

    Sometimes guys like our friend Dave are a little hard on others because ‘our’ ‘better education’ has meant that it takes us longer to see through the bullshit. Most blue collar guys see through politicians virtually from their teens. That politicians do not represent their constituencies is NOT news to the average canadian, they simply do not invest the time and energy to blog it.

    So don’t be fooled by the media’s representation of the public. Keep in mind though that it may simply be pragmatism that has many saying “why would we want more business when all we get are more subsidy pigs?”

    But come on NBT, blaming the opposition for government policies? Volpe has actually said some interesting things that most people have ignored, but thats kind of like blaming environmentalists for Canada’s increased pollution because they are not working hard enough to stop them. The buck doesn’t stop at the opposition.

  6. NB taxpayer says:

    Same goes for you, David. As for the running thing, for me, it would come down to the party that believes in freedom, less gov intervention (and waste) and lower taxes. Right now the only party in NB to identify with any of the above is the NDP. Go figure.