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Reality Check: NDP promises based on fantasy money

Reality Check: NDP promises based on fantasy money

Posted on April 23, 2011

“An NDP spokesman said that, if elected to form a government, it would delay some green spending initiatives until it was able to set up the [cap and trade] system.  But he was unable to immediately identify which initiatives would be delayed, saying that the party expected to launch the system right away by making it a priority and relying on existing knowledge from within the government and outside stakeholders.”
(“Ignatieff says promoting family-friendly policies and stability are the keys to a Liberal victory,” Postmedia, April 22, 2011)

Jack Layton’s platform is built on fantasy money.

In just the first year alone, Jack Layton claims he can get $3.6 billion in revenue from an immediate cap-and-trade system, $2 billion in revenue from cutting unidentified fossil fuel subsidies, and $1 billion in revenue by cracking down on unidentified tax havens.

Not so fast, Jack. Here’s the reality:

Other examples of cap-and-trade systems show it takes years to get one up and running.  Europe’s Emissions Trading Scheme proposed its first draft framework in 2001 and didn’t launch until 2005. Similarly, the Western Climate Initiative – of which Quebec, Ontario, Manitoba and British Columbia are a part of – negotiated its first design framework for a cap-and-trade plan in 2010, and they estimate it won’t be fully implemented until 2015.

And yet Jack Layton would have Canadians believe that he can magically establish a cap-and-trade system in Canada within the next 10 months and generate $3.6 billion in that time.

Jack Layton has not said which specific fossil fuel subsidies he will cut to raise $2 billion this year, nor has he identified which tax havens will raise $1 billion for his platform this year.

Jack Layton can’t pay for his platform with billions of dollars of fantasy money. That means he either can’t live up to his election commitments, or he’ll increase our already crippling deficit, or he’ll be forced to raise taxes on Canadian families. Which is it Jack?

The Conservative platform puts big corporations first and families second – and only if they can manage to balance the budget on $11 billion in cutbacks after spending billions on jets, jails and corporate tax cuts.

Only the Liberal Party’s platform offers a fully-costed, credible, realistic approach to help families make ends meet, keep taxes low and take a responsible approach to the deficit.