Many Governments Lack Common Sense.

Ontario Progressive Conservative finance critic, Victor Fideli, recently commented on how Premier Wynne and her gang are attempting to double count money from the Hydro One sale.  In this case, they hope to use the money to reduce their deficit AND to transfer it to the Trillium Trust where it will be used for infrastructure improvement.

His point.  “They’re attempting to spend the dollars two times.”

He should not be surprised.  Ms Wynne’s government is about smoke and mirrors.  Well, given the vast sums foolishly spent on green energy, I suppose smoke is not fair.  Nonetheless, obfuscation is their principle skill.

Spending the same money twice is easy for them because they do not actually account for things very well.  Accounting’s cousin, accountability has been near zero for some time. We know that combination does not work and yet we permit it to continue.  We can be smarter than that.  Ideology does not automatically supply resources to carry out its goals and misleading accounting is a common byproduct. Liberal voters must learn the obvious.

Eventually enough of the people will see through the ideology and the government characters will be cast out like last Sunday’s leftovers.  No loss.

Be sure to share the lesson with children and young adults.  Probably some older ones too.  Money is a one time thing.  Like Lowney’s easter eggs, “when they’re gone, they’re gone.”

We can be easily deluded into spending the same dollar twice.  Here’s how it works.

  1. I spy the latest iPad at Best Buy and put it on my Visa card.  No matter how I paid for it at Best Buy, I spent a dollar.  In this case dollars that I don’t have yet.
  2. I get paid two weeks later and feel rich, so I take my cash and spend it on a date, dinner and a show.
  3. Another week goes by and the Visa bill shows up.  I have spent my paycheck on two things.  My date and my iPad.  Could be a conflict with reality here.
  4. To resolve the problem, I reluctantly pay Visa the minimum and move on.

If you do this often enough you will be bankrupt.  It might take a while, but it is inevitable.  Same thing for the government.

Financial success involves more than just money.  It requires discipline or, at a minimum, common sense.  Governments seem to have little common sense and they probably won’t until the people have more.

Work at it.  Teach Your Children by CSNY

Thanks to Jaymes, who has many times seen the “spend dollars once” limit  in this blog, for the story from Investment Executive

Don Shaughnessy is a retired partner in an international public accounting firm and is now with The Protectors Group, a large personal insurance, employee benefits and investment agency in Peterborough Ontario.


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