Reach deeper into your pockets, Mr. Flaherty

I’m concerned about the federal budget, which is fortunate because the more concerned I am about something the easier it is to reach my word count.

As I write this, journalists are using all their skills (begging and whining) to get “government sources” to tell them budget details before today’s official announcement. But I know how it will go:

1) Finance Minister Jim Flaherty will explain that the budget is a fiscally conservative plan (except for the prisons and jets part) and that it will create jobs (except for the jobs-cuts part), and that it shows that Canadians have a bright future (except that we’re one step away from DOOM and only the Conservatives can protect us).

2) The opposition leaders will, using talking points they wrote three weeks ago, explain that Flaherty has the same moral standing as, say, Satan, and that the budget document is the worst thing they’ve read since Twilight.

3) The opposition will vote for it anyway.

I don’t know about you, but this era of deep cuts is starting to get me down.

There’s the world economic collapse, where countries like Greece decide they can’t have nice things anymore and burn them.

There’s provincial woes, where places like Ontario have budget speeches that read like eulogies.

And in Toronto, where I live, the only thing approaching economic good news is when sports fans win free pizza because the Raptors score 100 points. (Rumour has it the Leafs have a similar promotion, but it’s been lost to the mists of time).

It’s getting to the point where we should really give up on the tradition of finance ministers buying new shoes on budget day. Instead, he or she should pose for newspapers with a nice, shiny axe.

I’m trying to take a pragmatic, level-headed approach to the cuts, which is why I offer the following advice to Mr. Flaherty. Forgive me if this is trite, but I think the government should -— this is important, write it down — wear a lot of jackets.

I’ll explain. I, like Canada itself, am in debt up to my earmuffs. But I just made some money back, as I do every spring, because I pulled out a spring jacket and discovered a crisp $5 bill. Pretty sweet.

Clearly, all MPs should carry the federal coffers in their jacket pockets. Then wait till next spring and reap the surprise windfall.

This works so well for me that I’m thinking about getting more jackets to increase my return. I’m pretty sure Ben Bernanke does this as well.

Frankly, Mr. Flaherty, I see this as our only hope. If you don’t agree, I’ll be deeply concerned. At least until I hit my word count.

Now.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Judge strikes down NY limits on donations to…

A federal judge on Thursday reluctantly struck down New York's limits on donations to independent political action committees as unconstitutional, potentially ushering in a new…

Local

On-duty NYPD detective arrested for DWI in Queens

A New York City Police detective was arrested early Thursday and charged with driving under the influence while on the clock.

Local

City Council committee moves Williamsburg's Domino refinery deal…

The deal to turn the old Domino Sugar refinery along the Williamsburg waterfront into a new housing complex is one Council vote away from approval.

National

On newly released tape, 'Squeaky' Fromme says was…

Manson Family member Squeaky Fromme told a mental health examiner in newly released interview the "X" she carved in her forehead was meant to separate her from "the system."

The Word

Taylor Swift battles paparazzi daily at Tribeca penthouse

We're entranced by these photos of poor Taylor Swift leaving her Tribeca apartment.

Movies

'A Brony Tale' documents men who are into…

Ashleigh Ball, a voice actress on "My Little Pony," speaks to us.

Movies

Tribeca: Nikki Reed on going funny for a…

"Intramural" star Nikki Reed talks about being the straight person in a broad comedy, spending time in Austin and how "Thirteen" was a "miracle."

Going Out

Pop-up cat cafe opens to long lines in…

The country's first pop-up cat cafe opened in New York on Thursday.

NFL

2014 NFL Mock Draft: Updated, new April 24…

2014 NFL Mock Draft: Updated, new April 24 version

MLB

5 infamous pitcher ejections for cheating

Never fear Yankees fans, Michael Pineda is far from the first MLB pitcher to be thrown out of a game for cheating.

MLB

Yankees pitcher Michael Pineda ejected for using pine…

Pineda was thrown out of the game against the Red Sox Wednesday for having pine tar on his neck -- for all the world to see.

NFL

Giants 2014 regular season schedule

The Giants will play five prime-time games — against the Lions, Redskins, Eagles, Colts and Cowboys.

Parenting

New study: Inside the wage gap between boys…

According to a new study, there's a wage gap between boys and girls, with boys earning more allowance for less chores.

Tech

From Apple TV to Fire TV, big changes…

Apple is set to launch a new generation of it's Apple TV, which grossed over $1 billion in 2013. But competition from Amazon and Google looms.

Style

Katy Perry releases a new Claire’s collection

Katy Perry expands her empire by releasing an accessories collection at Claire's.

Style

MAC & Proenza Schouler collection unveiled

MAC Cosmetics is releasing a new collection with Proenza Schouler.