David Miller The Conservative?

Ok maybe that title is a little premature.  But the good Mayor of Toronto's recent comments regarding a property tax hike is telling: "You can't have a great city for free..  This budget is more than a balance sheet." In a nutshell There Aint No Such Thing As A Free Lunch (TANSTAAFL).  That burst of insight coming from a member of the Toronto Yuppie elite is not only amazing but could be the first sign of  a conversion of heart for the socialist mayor.

I once knew a civil servant who had spend decades in government.  As a full disclosure here he did have Conservative views, although I can't be sure that he always did.  One day he made a comment to me I will never forget: "The problem with healthcare is everyone figures it's free..."

You see my friend after all his years in government had come to the conclusion that the single most destructive thing that having government deliver as service will do is that the connection between individual responsibility and individual initiative is lost.  Healthcare, to most Canadians is free.  But nothing could be further from the truth. We pay for it in our taxes.  It's the equivalent of thousands of dollars each year in our taxes.

But that doesn't stop us from treating it as if it were free.  Because for us, it makes no different how much we abuse the system we will always pay the same taxes.  It's like apartments that include utilities in rent.  As a tenant in a rental I never worry about leaving a light on, or using too much water because to me it makes no difference.  It's the Landlord's responsibility to worry about how much utilities I use.  Simmilarly it's the government's responsibility to worry about the services it delivers - and believe it or not government's don't charge problem tenants more money if they need to because then it would be acting like a business instead of the romantic enlightened vehicle of modern day socialism.

That's why we have to be so careful in having the government provide a service that someone else can provide just as well. 

David Miller's admission makes me smile.  He's well on his way to coming to the conclusion that it's best that government do the least.

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