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Saturday, August 09, 2008

Bureaucrat running dogs take a bigger bite

Capitalists_unite_2 In the ongoing international class struggle between the political class (tax consumers) and the working class (taxpayers), the working class in B.C. have been delivered another blow.

In a recent press release, the Canadian Taxpayers Federation (CTF) is crying foul over the massive pay hikes for B.C. deputy and assistant deputy ministers, a move that the organization says shows the provincial government is “out-of-touch with taxpayers.”

Of course they’re out-of-touch with taxpayers; the bureaucrat and political classes are tax consumers, not taxpayers.

The province announced a new pay schedule that increased deputy ministers' salaries by 35%, from $221,760 to $299,215 and the deputy minister to the Premier's salary by 43%, from $243,936 to $348,600. The maximum salary for assistant deputy ministers increased by 22%, from $160,000 to $195,000.

Compare these political pay increases against the meagre overall 3% wage increase of B.C. workers between 2006 and 2007.

Maureen Bader, B.C. Director of the CTF said "First we had the 30% MLA pay increase, then a variety of municipal pay increases, and now huge senior level bureaucrat pay increases - we are on a dangerous trajectory with no end in sight."

The government claims it needs to offer more attractive wages to draw skilled workers away from private sector jobs, but Bader is not sympathetic: "As the private sector creates wealth while the government redistributes it, we can expect lower economic growth in the future if government forces up labour costs and raises taxes to pay for them."

Public sector wages, however, are only part of the story of the bureaucrat running dogs. In their study of public sector compensation, the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) makes the case that “Public sector employees continue to benefit from higher wages and non-wage benefits relative to their private sector counterparts.” Those non-wage benefits are fat government pensions, of course.

Only when the workers of the world unite with their taxpaying capitalist brothers and sisters will we stop this exploitation by the political class.

For more on Marxist revisionism, read "Marxism and Austrian Class Analysis" by libertarian theorist Hans-Hermann Hoppe.

And you can read the CTF press release here.

(Image from Bureaucrash)

Posted by Matthew Johnston on August 9, 2008 in Canadian Provincial Politics | Permalink

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Comments

Finally, someone realizes that the left/right battle is all a bunch of bullshit. They are all the same political class.

Harper/Stelmach/Dion/Layton/Trudeau/Chretien
They are all filthy political class thieves. We should realize this before we end up with soviet system and a Conservative government.

Posted by: Sarcasm | 2008-08-09 4:34:49 PM


Matthew,

This is an excellent post. I especially liked this part:

"Only when the workers of the world, and their taxpaying capitalist brothers and sisters, unite, will we stop this exploitation by the political class."

In the past, I've only half-ironically called myself a Marxian libertarian. You can make some good use of a Marx-style class analysis if you think of the politicians and bureaucrats (naturally enough) as the ruling class, and the rest of us as the exploited, working class, bamboozled by false rhetoric into supporting a cabal of criminals who would slit our throats for another pay raise.

Special interest politics, made manifest in modern political parties, is just another way to keep us divided and misdirected. No one wants to be the only one not getting favors from the politicians, so we compete with each other for table scraps in a rigged game of rent-seeking.

Politicians and state bureaucrats -- what good are they, really?

Best,

Terrence

Posted by: Terrence Watson | 2008-08-09 5:05:57 PM


Sarcasm
"Finally, someone realizes that the left/right battle is all a bunch of bullshit. They are all the same political class."

So you are in favour of insurrection and treason, I presume. Who needs the gov't? Right?

If all politicians are the same, why have any politicians at all? Sarcasm, hereby, pronounces that the Canadian federation is null and void.

All former gov't officials...have at 'er. There is no longer a gov't to judge your actions.

Posted by: h2o273kk9 | 2008-08-09 5:46:09 PM


Finally, H2 says something thought worthy.

If I wanted to be as extreme as you in your rhetoric, but from an opposite angle, I'd say "Do you want total government where the political class rule the productive class? Do want to be like China/Soviets?"

But, I digress. We should think of these parasites from the bottom up. Not from the present to future.

What I mean is: We should think from the point of view of having absolutley no government, then ask ourselves how much government is really required, rather than asking how can we shrink the government.

Posted by: Sarcasm | 2008-08-09 6:36:38 PM


Sarcasm contradicts himself.

"Finally, someone realizes that the left/right battle is all a bunch of bullshit. They are all the same political class."

"We should think from the point of view of having absolutley no government, then ask ourselves how much government is really required, rather than asking how can we shrink the government."

Try a civics lesson!

Posted by: h2o273kk9 | 2008-08-09 7:53:52 PM


This is refreshing use of divisive jargon. The target audience should be the leaders of private sector organized labour and more importantly their members. Unfortunately, given the continuous growth of public sector union membership (and corresponding shrinkage in the private sector) and their monopoly on education, health care etc, Big labour is largely within the public sector. A deflationary recession in Canada's commodity-based economy (possibly already underway) will rapidly take Canada down to where sane policies could arise from the ashes and ensuing misery.

Canadian Governments need a whole lot of creative destruction along with a whole lot of privatization. I can count on one hand the number of provincial and federal ministries that should be allowed to exist and only then in a significantly shrunken form.

Posted by: John Chittick | 2008-08-10 11:10:34 AM


We are lucky if even 20% of our idiotic population is even paying attention to what the politicians are doing to us.

They have TV, Sports, Camping, IPods, Game machines, fishing, golf, their own lives with all it's distractions.

We, as the lobsters in the pot, are feeling the warming of the water and so far it's pretty comfortable.

By the time it's boiling we will be too far gone to do anything about jumping out of the pot.

I am all for stopping the never-ending tax grab, but I am not sure what on an organized level is possible. Who will be first to refuse to pay and then wind up in jail? Who?

The only group that has the power to withhold taxation is the business class and they are part of the government in this country. The smaller businesses are too busy and too unconnected to take on the tax people let alone the police.

When we reach such a state of poverty, failure and squalor that we have nothing left to lose, that is when people will be willing to take up arms although, by that time, we will have nothing to fight with and all the cameras will be in place.

Until then, we are bought-off and still have much to lose. I don't see a change coming from within other than from the Muslims who are determined to take us down eventually. The government neatly uses that threat to keep an eye on all of us.

The only freedom we have left is the freedom to bitch and the HRC's are working hard take that away too.

We are basically, fucked.

Go ahead, tell me something that will change my mind.

Posted by: John V | 2008-08-10 11:23:04 AM


H2: Where's the conradiction?

What would I learn in your civics lesson?

Posted by: Sarcasm | 2008-08-10 3:00:12 PM


Sarcasm wrote: “Finally, someone realizes that the left/right battle is all a bunch of bullshit. They are all the same political class.”

Since the term “liberal” has been hopelessly corrupted, I prefer the term non-statist (or libertarian) and I prefer to think of the “battle” as one between statists and non-statist.

Of course, non-statist will have disagreements about the size and scope of government, but at least we are starting from the premise that maximizing individual freedom from state interference is our political goal.

When a large percentage of the population works for the state, and are part of the political classes, it is very hard to convince them to embrace a non-statist or limited statist viewpoint.

Thanks for the comment, Sarcasm, but you’d better be careful. You didn’t come across as very sarcastic. I hope you’re not losing your touch?

Posted by: Matthew Johnston | 2008-08-10 4:30:11 PM


John V: I don't disagree with anything you've said. I haven't voted for years and I don't believe voting is a sacred act. But, I'm voting Libertarian in the next election. They are the only one's to make an issue of small government and freedom.

Posted by: Sarcasm | 2008-08-10 4:35:36 PM


Terrence Watson wrote: “This is an excellent post.”

I’ve always liked you, Terrence.

Terrence also wrote:

“In the past, I've only half-ironically called myself a Marxian libertarian. You can make some good use of a Marx-style class analysis if you think of the politicians and bureaucrats (naturally enough) as the ruling class, and the rest of us as the exploited, working class, bamboozled by false rhetoric into supporting a cabal of criminals who would slit our throats for another pay raise.”

Exactly, Terrence. A bureaucrat who works for a Human Rights Commission is an exploited, proletarian worker, according to Marxist class theory, and the Chinese family that runs the neighbourhood Laundromat are capitalist exploiters, bourgeoisie dogs.

Public sector unions have done a great job of creating what Marx called “false consciousness,” where workers are taught to hate their private sector employers and associate culturally with bureaucrats, the same people who in a very real way live off their labour.

Posted by: Matthew Johnston | 2008-08-10 4:38:00 PM


Sorry, Matthew: I meant to call someone an asshole in there somewhere. I just forgot.

Posted by: Sarcasm | 2008-08-10 4:38:20 PM


Don't let it happen again, Sarcasm. :-)

Posted by: Matthew Johnston | 2008-08-10 4:46:11 PM


Hey, H20, I don’t think one can conclude from Sarcasm’s comment that he is advocating anarchy.

I think he is trying to suggest that we should stop thinking of politics as a left-right continuum, and start judging politicians on how they treat individual rights.

Wouldn’t you agree with that?

Posted by: Matthew Johnston | 2008-08-10 5:50:21 PM


Sarcasm wrote: “We should think from the point of view of having absolutely no government, then ask ourselves how much government is really required....”

What you lack in delicacy, you make up for in wisdom, Sarcasm.

The first line in the book Anarchy, State, and Utopia by Harvard professor Robert Nozick is “If the state did not exist would it be necessary to invent it?”

Nozick starts from the state of nature and adds limited functions for the state as the book progresses. In the end, he concludes that we need a night watchman or libertarian state.

Anarchy, State, and Utopia is one of the most important books in political theory, libertarian or otherwise.

Posted by: Matthew Johnston | 2008-08-10 6:11:26 PM


H20 wrote: “Try a civics lesson!”

What do you mean by that comment, H20?

Posted by: Matthew Johnston | 2008-08-10 6:14:16 PM


Uh, yeah, Matthew that was my reference. The Nozick guy. Right.

Posted by: Sarcasm | 2008-08-10 6:16:13 PM


Complete agreement that to-day the battle is between the statists and the non statists, especially as statists exist on the Left (without exception) and far too often on the Right. I think the last true Conservative was Margaret Thatcher.

As to the divisive tactics, they are just that. The old saying of divide and conquer is very much alive.

Posted by: Alain | 2008-08-10 6:34:27 PM


Actually, Alain, Thatcher was a student of Hayek, who was a libertarian. She even passed out "The Road To Serfdom" to her staff.

Posted by: Sarcasm | 2008-08-10 6:44:14 PM


John Chittick wrote: “This is refreshing use of divisive jargon. The target audience should be the leaders of private sector organized labour and more importantly their members.”

Thanks, John, and I agree that we need to take this message to the members of private sector unions.

Karl Marx argued that workers resistant to socialism lack sufficient “class consciousness” that keeps them loyal to the bourgeoisie class against their own interests.

Of course, both wage laborers and capitalists benefit from economic freedom equally and ought to be united against a political class that seeks to expropriate the labour and capital of the nation.

Posted by: Matthew Johnston | 2008-08-10 6:53:34 PM


Actually, Alain, Thatcher was a student of Hayek,
Posted by: Sarcasm | 10-Aug-08 6:44:14 PM

I'm a big fan of Hayek also.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zvCTkBKRggc

Posted by: The Stig | 2008-08-10 7:34:40 PM


Stig: I think it's painfully obvious where you get your intellectual foundation.

Posted by: Sarcasm | 2008-08-10 7:54:51 PM


John V wrote: “We are lucky if even 20% of our idiotic population is even paying attention to what the politicians are doing to us.”

Maybe paying attention to what politicians are doing isn’t the solution to growing statism, John.

Some argue that ignoring the state is the best way to demonstrate that individuals are happy to manage their own affairs and regard politics as a disreputable business and parliament as nothing more than a debating club for professional meddlers.

Canadian Wendy McElroy edited a very controversial anthology called Dissenting Electorate: Those Who Refuse to Vote and the Legitimacy of Their Opposition.

In part, the book argues that “There are nonpolitical methods that rely on the spirit of voluntaryism that better serve society.”

I’m not yet convinced I should de-politicize completely, but it’s an interesting idea.

Posted by: Matthew Johnston | 2008-08-10 8:13:05 PM


Stig: I think it's painfully obvious where you get your intellectual foundation.
Posted by: Sarcasm | 10-Aug-08 7:54:51 PM

BWAHAHAHAHA Now fuck off you pompous little prick.

Posted by: The Stig | 2008-08-10 8:18:08 PM


Alain wrote: “Complete agreement that to-day the battle is between the statists and the non statists, especially as statists exist on the Left (without exception) and far too often on the Right.”

Thanks for your comment, Alain.

I think we need a culturally conservative libertarian movement that understands that social order comes from families and other civil institutions and that political freedom comes from property rights and limited government.

I also think you’re correct that we can safely ignore the left as a source of ideas. These people disparage the traditional family, hate capitalism, and support interventionist foreign policies entirely divorced from national security concerns.

Posted by: Matthew Johnston | 2008-08-10 9:12:14 PM


Sarcasm and The Stig,

Surely we can all agree that both Hayeks are worth a closer inspection.

No?

http://revver.com/video/10904/hayeks-the-road-to-serfdom-in-five-minutes/

Posted by: Matthew Johnston | 2008-08-10 9:22:17 PM


Yes, Matthew I agree. I shall not bicker over labels. Whatever you want to call it I support small federal government limited to national defence, protecting our borders, national security (not local law enforcement) and foreign affairs - and thus with minimum federal taxation and bureaucracy. The federal government would also totally remove itself from provincial jurisdiction, especially concerning education, health care, welfare, un/employment, language and transfer payments. The provincial governments would take back these areas with the residents deciding how much they are willing to pay (taxes) to support any or all of these areas. The same applies to local government. This is the only way to wean people from the idea that there is a free lunch - in order words clamouring for just about everything without any understanding of the cost or who pays. It would be up to local communities to set their own social and moral standards and then extending to the provincial level. Of course the standards would likely change with time, but it must be a decision at the lowest level rather than what we now have with any special interest minority imposing its will on the local majority. In the main people must be held accountable and responsible for their actions and granted the freedom to run their own lives and businesses.

For me this represents what conservatism used to be, but I am not hung up on labels.

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