Another $200-million for the auto industry

A couple of years ago Ontario and the Feds put up $1 billion in cash subsidies for the auto sector in southern Ontario. The Globe is reporting that the Flaherty will be throwing another $200 million in the pot in his budget today.

I realize that pragmatism wins out over ideology in politics but for me its a bit like finger nails on a chalkboard. To say out of one side of your mouth government shouldn’t be in the business of ‘picking winners and losers’ and then on the other side announcing subsidies for the lucky winners – seems a bit too callous for me.

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0 Responses to Another $200-million for the auto industry

  1. Anonymous says:

    Hey – when you’ve created monopoly money for the people to use, why not print up an extra hundred million or so to drop into the laps of the corporate elite?

    It’s almost as if they want people to demand Communism – at least then the loan sharking we call banking could be dealt with.

  2. mikel says:

    Don’t forget the hypocrisy, as little as a month ago when corporations were crying for more money (Toyota, the most profitable company was also the loudest-go figure) Harper was telling McGuinty that “I don’t deal at the micro-economic level”. In other words-I don’t bail people out, I just help them get richer.

    Notice that this is supposed to be a ‘thrift’ budget even though they have a 12 billion surplus and Canada now has the 9th largest economy in the world. Pretty good for the 67th most populous, oh no, sorry, its NOT good, we’ve got to be ‘thrifty’.

  3. Anonymous says:

    The nerve you struck…

    Boy, you just love this stuff don’t you David? You write as if hypocrisy /shallow pragmatism on the part of Flaherty, or a Fidelity economist proves the worth of corporate welfare. ( Yes Mr. Campbell, you can write until you are blue in the face that what you advocate is NOT corporate welfare — facts, logic and reason don’t agree! Here is the formula; tax dollars given to private companies = corporate welfare.)

    I am looking forward to what kind of scatter-brain ideas you offer up tomorrow in your column.

    I implore you to take economic growth more seriously, and THINK!

  4. nbt says:

    Well said, David. And to best you, they should eliminate it [corporate welfare] in practice and in legislation (we can’t always trust politicians at their word).

  5. mikel says:

    Well, this story has died (for now) since the story turned out false. I say ‘for now’ because I suspect as an election approaches there will be ‘little surprises’ along the way-if Harper has any brains at all.

    But again to the larger picture, to side with David corporate welfare is FAR more complex than the anonymous poster says above.

    So look at Nova Scotia, a PAYROLL REBATE isn’t tax dollars going to a corporation, but its very clearly corporate welfare. We just saw what a cheap interest rate Michelin has gotten from the feds in comparison to other companies, and they admit it. They simply say that when a company is that size you do what they say to keep them, and be lucky that its not tax dollars (which it sort of is).

    So closer to home, if the province rewrites tax law to limit Irvings property taxes, then Irving ‘doesn’t pay as much taxes’. As they say, if perhaps there was a chance they wouldn’t have set up there, the province would get nothing, so it ‘technically’ doesn’t cost taxpayers anything.

    But to suggest that rewriting 50 years of legislation that even the mainstream business press was aghast about in order to give a multibillion dollar enterprise a ‘tax rebate’ of 8 million dollars a year is NOT ‘corporate welfare’ stretches that notion to its limit.

    OF course NBT and our anonymous friend can try to limit the definition of ‘corporate welfare’, however, go look it up, the most accurate definition surely belongs to those who made up the term, and them certainly meant it to mean more than just tax dollars going to a company.

    Again, refusing to enforce environmental laws is CLEARLY ‘corporate welfare’. It lets a company get away with doing something that saves them money that you or I could never get away with. You try spitting out sulphur from your chimney and see how long it is before the police show up at your door.

    But hopefully these people will really get active about corporate welfare in the places where its most aggregious-the forestry sector.