I’d like to say I’m shocked at Silver’s and Trudeau’s short sightedness and ignorance, but the truth is I’m not. Most of us could see this coming from a mile away. Go use any carbon footprint calculator and by a large margin your biggest carbon “footprint” will be from food. It’s not from your vehicle, nor is it from your home heating fuel. My carbon footprint from food is more than that of my vehicle, flights and heating costs combined. And good luck making much of a change there.
So when Silver says something as asinine as “If every time that you go to the pump … you realize ‘I’m getting this much rebate back, and I pay this much in carbon,’ you’re going to start thinking about your behavior,” he’s only partly correct. I will start thinking about my behavior — just not how Trudeau and Silver would like me to. Because I’m not going to be taking transit in Whitehorse and I still need to eat. As a renter I’m not retrofitting my home, nor am I replacing my vehicle.
That doesn’t leave a lot of room for changes or to find additional money in my budget to accommodate this new tax that will impact every single thing I buy and consume.
But I can promise you what will change: my discretionary spending. If I’m spending more at the pumps, more on home heating costs and more on food, I’ll be spending less on entertainment — my nights at the pub or going out to a local restaurant with family and friends or buying clothes or furniture. Those will be cut back because it won’t be in my budget — especially as those pubs and restauarants will have to raise their prices to accommodate for the idiocy called the carbon tax.
And I know I won’t be alone in this situation. And even if we were to get back 100 per cent of what we were taxed — and I don’t think anyone is stupid enough to actually believe that we will (and Silver has admitted that many won’t) — that still won’t go back into the local economy. It will be used to pay for a vacation or to pay down debt or a million other little things that do not make up for the nights out that people’s entertainment budgets no longer accommodate.
If Silver and Trudeau were too stupid and shortsighted to see this, then they deserve everything they get. Unfortunately it won’t be they who feel the consequences with their golden parachutes, but the small business owners who are going to be struggling even more to survive. I just hope that we can vote them out before they do too much damage. But it’s times like this that you can’t help but cringe at the stupidity of the path that our elected officials are dragging us down.