Editorial: The best of intentions

Laying out a plan doesn’t mean it happens quickly

This week’s throne speech hit all the right points for getting voters to love the government in power.

Seems like someone has taken a few lessons from U.S. President Donald Trump; not only for the populist items but also the promises that are hard to completely fulfill.

The NDP throne speech laid out their plans to focus on “different choices to make life better,” including a poverty reduction strategy to help make life easier for people at low-income levels and affordable daycare. Cellphones even got an honourable mention.

This isn’t to say the current government isn’t putting in resources to address poverty-related issues — the investment in affordable housing is ongoing, even if the projects are slow to take shape — but the throne speech had a flavour of telling people what they want to hear.

Let’s look at cellphones. There is nobody, other than executives at the giant telecoms, that wouldn’t like to see lower-priced plans. And after a recent study showed that Canadian providers are making some of the highest profits per gigabyte in the world, it became pretty clear the Canadian end user is getting gouged.

It’s hard to see how a provincial government would take this issue on, however. Cell companies are federally-regulated, and any real change in this area would have to come from that level.

Yes, a province can lobby the feds for change, but there’s no reason to think that would prompt a sudden change in policy.

The province is working on affordable daycare, with the $10-a-day pilot program, but it’s also something governments have been promising and working on for decades.

It makes people feel good when a government talks about working on these issues, but it’s best not to get your hopes up that anything is likely to change soon. It takes years to make the kind of shifts talked about in the throne speech.

— Black Press

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