Alarming trends

When it comes to crime and punishment, you can't argue with Treasury Board President Stockwell Day. No, really, you simply can't argue with the guy. Government statistics show crime rates have been falling in Canada since a peak in 1991.

When it comes to crime and punishment, you can’t argue with Treasury Board President Stockwell Day.

No, really, you simply can’t argue with the guy.

Government statistics show crime rates have been falling in Canada since a peak in 1991.

Statistics Canada reports overall crime dropped by seven per cent in 2007.

The hard numbers show there have been fewer homicides, attempted murders, sexual assaults and robberies.

Today, according to the government’s own numbers, the nation is safer than at any other time in the last 19 years.

Canada is also poorer.

The Conservative government has slashed taxes and ramped up spending, putting the nation on the road to a structural deficit, according to Parliamentary Budget Officer Stephen Page.

The only way to avoid this is to either cut spending or raise taxes, he noted.

Day agrees.

This week, standing before a Canada’s Economic Action Plan banner, Day said, emphatically, the government is committed to cutting the deficit – he didn’t want to send mixed signals to jittery financial markets.

However, the government is also committed to building prisons.

This, after it said it didn’t want to send more Canadians to prison as a justification for killing the mandatory long-form census. (Of course, the government can still send you to prison for failing to fill out the short-form census … but we digress.)

Just know, this government, which doesn’t want to send Canadians to prison, is spending $9 billion on prisons during a time when the hard facts show there are fewer bad guys.

Also, it doesn’t want to send mixed signals to the market.

So, how can it justify building jails, not to mention incurring the ongoing operation and maintenance cost of running the expensive facilities in perpetuity?

Well, Day cited “unreported crime” statistics in unnamed surveys.

“People simply aren’t reporting (crime) the same way they used to,” said Day.

He said the unreported crime stats are “alarming,” suggesting the government cannot take the “liberal view” that the crime rate is dropping.

So, how do you argue with unreported crime stats that are alarming?

Well, you can’t. It is impossible. It’s like trying to convince tin hatters that UFOs don’t exist.

It is an assertion that you can’t argue with – how can you debate alarming numbers of crimes that people aren’t reporting?

And what crimes are they? Murders? Thefts? Robberies? Assaults? Shoplifting?

We don’t know, and it’s impossible to figure out because people aren’t reporting them. Nevertheless they are alarming – the government says so.

Which goes a long way to explaining the government’s approach to statistics.

Forget the numbers, better to go with your gut – crime is going up. We just know it.

It also explains why the deficit isn’t a problem.

Day is going to eliminate it by tapping the pot of gold that lies at the end of the double rainbow. (Richard Mostyn)

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Maria Metzen off the start line of the Yukon Dog Mushers Association’s sled dog race on Jan. 9. (Gabrielle Plonka/Yukon News)
Mushers race in preparation for FirstMate Babe Southwick

The annual race is set for Feb. 12 and 13.

The Yukon government is making changes to the medical travel system, including doubling the per diem and making destinations for medical services more flexible. (Joel Krahn/Yukon News file)
Subsidy for medical travel doubled with more supports coming

The change was recommended in the Putting People First report endorsed by the government

Chloe Sergerie, who was fined $500 under the <em>Civil Emergency Measures Act</em> on Jan. 12, says she made the safest choice available to her when she entered the territory. (Mike Thomas/Yukon News file)
Woman fined $500 under CEMA says she made ‘safest decision’ available

Filling out a declaration at the airport was contrary to self-isolation, says accused

The Yukon Department of Education building in Whitehorse on Dec. 22, 2020. Advocates are calling on the Department of Education to reverse their redefinition of Individualized Education Plans (IEPs) that led to 138 students losing the program this year. (John Hopkins-Hill/Yukon News file)
Advocates call redefinition of IEPs “hugely concerning,” call for reversal

At least 138 students were moved off the learning plans this year

Yukonomist Keith Halliday
Yukonomist: Your Northern regulatory adventure awaits!

“Your Northern adventure awaits!” blared the headline on a recent YESAB assessment… Continue reading

Yukoner Shirley Chua-Tan is taking on the role of vice-chair of the social inclusion working group with the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences’ oversight panel and working groups for the autism assessment. (Submitted)
Canadian Academy of Health Sciences names Yukoner to panel

Shirley Chua-Tan is well-known for a number of roles she plays in… Continue reading

The Fish Lake area viewed from the top of Haeckel Hill on Sept. 11, 2018. The Yukon government and Kwanlin Dün First Nation (KDFN) announced they are in the beginning stages of a local area planning process for the area. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Local area planning for Fish Lake announced

The Government of Yukon and Kwanlin Dün First Nation (KDFN) announced in… Continue reading

Whitehorse City Hall. (Joel Krahn/Yukon News file)
City hall, briefly

A look at decisions made by Whitehorse city council this week

Fire damage, photographed on Jan. 11, to a downtown apartment building which occurred late in the evening on Jan. 8. Zander Firth, 20, from Inuvik, was charged with the arson and is facing several other charges following his Jan. 12 court appearance. (Gabrielle Plonka/Yukon News)
More charges for arson suspect

The Inuvik man charged in relation to the fire at Ryder Apartments… Continue reading

The grace period for the new Yukon lobbyist registry has come to an end and those who seek to influence politicians will now need to report their efforts to a public database. (Mike Thomas/Yukon News file)
Grace period for new lobbyist registry ends

So far nine lobbyists have registered their activities with politicians in the territory

The Government of Yukon Main Administration Building in Whitehorse on Aug. 21, 2020. Some Yukon tourism and culture non-profit organizations may be eligible to receive up to $20,000 to help recover from losses due to the COVID-19 pandemic. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Details released on relief funding for tourism and culture non-profits

Some Yukon tourism and culture non-profit organizations may be eligible to receive… Continue reading

Most Read