Most of us would say whoopee!
Some of us, the skeptics, would be a bit wary of Greeks bearing gifts.
Now what if Trudeau corrected himself and told us that there was a catch to this windfall, that in fact, your grandchildren will be liable for the debt when they became taxpayers in the future and will bear the cost of paying the interest and principle of the money that you received so generously back in the day when Justin gave it to you.
Think of it as downloading your student loan on your grandchildren.
Would you still accept the money under these circumstances?
I suspect that too many of us would close our eyes, stick fingers in our ears and take the money, because like drugs, free money is a temptation hard to resist.
Around the dinner table amongst family, or on television amid experts, the idea of spending money today and leaving our children and their descendants the bill, rarely makes good conversation.
But it should.
Like the proverbial ostrich that buries its head in the sand, ignoring the issue is manifest denial.
Today, Justin Trudeau is set to add $150 billion dollars to the debt over the term of his first government, something that will cost unborn taxpayers about $10,000 each. This is on top of the $40,000 dollar legacy debt that each of our future taxpayers has inherited from previous governments, starting with Trudeau senior back in the seventies.
This debt by the way, doesn't account for provincial debt which works out, depending on the province where these future taxpayers will live, to about another ten to thirty thousand dollars each of additional debt.
This by the way, is the ultimate "taxation without representation' scenario.
Read: Trudeau government to smash debt and deficit records
Let us not delude ourselves, the debt has grown so large that we cannot pay it off in our generation, especially considering that we are not even trying.
There are those experts who say that Trudeau's lending amounts to less than 10% of government income, not a horribly significant amount, but continue the practice over thirty years and the results are disastrous.
Read: Interest payments on government debt a painful reminder that there are no free lunches
Let us consider a family which 30 years ago had a combined income of $25,000 and which borrowed and spent 10% a year more than they took in and continued this behavior over thirty years.
Thirty years later this family's income would have grown to about $95,000 a year, but the aggregate family debt would be somewhere about $150,000, costing the family about $7,500 a year in interest cost alone.
But what happens when the $95,000 income falls unexpectedly to $90,000 due to market conditions, (which is the case today with falling oil prices.)
Our mythical family is in a precarious position and paying off any of the principle becomes impossible and the idea of stopping borrowing unrealistic, unless the family cuts expenses significantly, something increasingly difficult to do.
At this point, the bank might well refuse further loans, after all, the increasing debt load cannot go on indefinitely. Not a pretty scenario.
It is the same for our federal government, except that Ottawa has a trick to get over the lending ceiling, that is, passing off the debt, promising bankers that future generations will become responsible to take over the debt, something the above analogous family cannot do in good conscious.
|The real 'hockey stick' graph|
This in the first hundred years of our country, during which we fought two major and two minor wars.
With the election of Pierre-Elliot Trudeau the era of borrow and spend was opened and today each taxpayer owes about $41,000 each, with the federal governments debt sitting at about $700 billion.
Add the provincial public debt and you can add about $10,000 to $30,000 to that number.
The problem is that there comes a point where there is no chance to pay off the principle, considering the income we take in and the expenses we have and the fact that Ottawa is suffering a poisonous structural deficit, thanks to falling oil prices.
Today 11% of our federal taxes are used to pay off the interest on the federal debt, just about the same amount that we spend on old-age pensions, or the money Ottawa transfers to the provinces.
And Justin is fixing to raise that percentage another few points with his reckless deficit spending.
So the idea that we'll be able to pay down this debt in our or our children's lifetime is impossible.
Let us wish good luck to our grandchildren and their descendants, they've been drafted to own the debt we have incurred!
But before you complain, remember if you are aged under fifty years old, YOU WERE AND REMAIN the prime beneficiary of this lending and spending orgy.
Today I heard calls from the CBC for additional funding of $400 million, which according to experts would cost each Canadian taxpayer an addition $90 a year.
But this is FALSE!
Considering that the government isn't proposing a new CBC tax, it means that your grandchildren are being asked once more to fund our debt-financed consumption and will assume this additional debt.
Next time Trudeau promises a new program or expenditure, ask yourself if it is fair to our grandchildren who will be obliged to pay the freight.
All we hear from the hypocritical hoity-toity government and popular leaders is that we need to clean up the environment for the benefit of our heirs, yet none is willing to address the dishonest and deceitful practice of downloading our consumption-fuelled debt on our kids.
Let us stop pretending that our politicians and indeed ourselves, care about the welfare of future generations while we frivolously steal from them and this with reckless abandon.
It is despicable, and every time I hear a government official or community leader blather on about saving our planet for the kids, I want to desperately make them understand the utter hypocrisy.
So Justin et al, save the planet by all means, but pay for the effort yourself!