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OK. goes another #JoeRants because I can't keep it to myself. I used to think of myself as a fiscal conservative but I'm not really that. I've since shifted to "fiscal responsibilitarian." I know it's not a word, but I'm rolling with it for now. Anyways... #ABleg
We live in a province (#Alberta) where we have been the benefactors of good oil prices & good revenues for a long, long time. We SHOULD have been using those revenues to save for a rainy day. They should never have entered the convo in paying off operating expenses. Why? #ABleg
Because it buffered us from the real cost of doing business. We just assumed it was going to last forever & so we threw money at everything. Houses are more expensive here. Health care's more expensive. Press secretaries are more expensive. We were living the high life. #ABleg
And it was a good life. But it also came with an inherent risk that if prices dropped or if we couldn't get product to market, we were seeing a massive piece of our provincial revenues taking a hit with NO buffer. Oh, and we didn't save any money from those good days. #ABleg
As a bit of a sidenote, we also didn't pay for things that we needed to pay for. Deferred maintenance on all of these new things we built kinda got forgot about. Heck, we're still building things we needed YEARS ago. But sure, we have a "spending problem." #ABleg
We can analyze decisions of years gone by until the cows come home, but the fact of the matter is we have a certain level of services that we've come to expect & we're not going to have the same kind of money we had before. It's having a fine wine taste on a Budweiser budget.
So where are we going from here? Are we going to continue to budget on certain royalty prices & cross our fingers? Are we going to take out a lot of debt & come up with a reasonable plan on paying it back? Or are we just going to slash everything? #ABleg
Keep in mind: slashing those services is going to come with a human cost. It's going to mean talented people are going to leave this province for greener pastures. They may very well go home. And good luck enticing anyone else from moving here on the prayer for better days.
The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over & over & over again while expecting different results. Yet, here we are contemplating doing the same thing we've done before. All in hopes that one day we can go back to the way it used to be. It's not happening. #ABleg
I compare it to being a worker with a side hustle. Would you base your home expenses on what you make from that side hustle? Or would that be spending cash while your main expenses are paid for by your main job? Because that side hustle can be a bit flaky. #ABleg
I'm not saying we should throw our middle fingers at the energy industry. In fact, I believe we should be doing everything in our power to make it the best in the world. But to depend on it heavily as our main bread winner isn't working out to well. So let's fix it. #TheEnd
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