Why I am a conservative at 22 years old

10 Apr

I get asked often why I’d align myself with a party that very few people my age seem to (at least in Atlantic Canada).  I thought I’d blog about it to get things straight.

When I was in second year university, I moved back to PEI after working/schooling in Ottawa for a bit.  I had a job, but I kind of sucked at it, and eventually I left.  I slept on a mattress in a truly terrible apartment in Sherwood and I spent far too much money.  I ran up my credit card and overdraft trying to remain independent despite netting almost none.  It was dumb.  I was a bad roommate.  I was spending way out of my means and had the option to stop, admit defeat, and go home.

My mom bailed me out, and I suspect it cost about $1000… my minimum payment was well over what I was netting a month as a student.   I had no groceries or credit left (thank goodness they don’t give students much!).  My only saving grace was that I didn’t have any loans – that is the only reason I can afford to live alone even now, after school.  It was embarrassing and I moved home into her basement for half a year to get myself sorted out.

No government should behave the way that I did when I was 19.  But national (and provincial) debt keeps rising and payments per person are soaring.  But this time, instead of having parents bail us out, it’ll be the kids.  It’ll be my generation with far fewer social programs/support funding unless Canada with just as much, or more taxation.  The only foreseeable way of fixing this would be drastically increasing the industry of the country – i.e. the proposed corporate tax cuts by the Harper Conservatives.  Look, it’s hard to defend other things the government has done.  Being in contempt of parliament is shitty, though there is definitely argument that the Conservatives were just the only ones to get caught and that Question Period has been a lark since QP began to be filmed and aired publicly.  The jets wouldn’t be my ideal, though I strongly support military spending since it’s been cut and cut, putting the Canadians serving at risk.  The very-foreseeable future involves much higher taxation with much less available services for Canadians, or worse, further debt.

There’s a perception that only hicks of scary business suits can get behind this kind of thinking.  That makes no sense to me.  I know that arts spending and social programs are important to Canadian identity as well as the well-being of Canada as a nation.  I know that there are arguments that social programs go around and improve industry in an indirect, immeasurable way.  And I agree that we have to strike a balance.  But like the environmental deficit, constant spending will catch up with us, and when it does, it won’t be pretty.

Anyway, I welcome any challenging/diverging viewpoints ’cause I think political thought should be constantly changing rather than ingrained.


One Response to “Why I am a conservative at 22 years old”

  1. Stephen Pate April 11, 2011 at 4:22 pm #

    I agree with you that we should live within or means both personally and as a country. Borrowing is not evil but continued deficit spending leads to disaster. The truth is the Conservatives have the worst record for piling up debt. I had dinner with Michael Wilson in the early 90s and asked him how a Conservative Finance Minister could run up the deficit. He told me that he was only one vote at Cabinet and the PM wanted things the way they were. Check out the story I researched. If the Tories were better money managers I probably would support them as well. Cheers.

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