Wednesday, October 21, 2009
Pension Protest on Parliament Hill
There was a pension protest on Parliament Hill on Wednesday (Oct 21st) at noon. It was chilly, but not too windy or raining - which was nice. The emcee said there were 4,000 people on the Hill, but this CBC news article (Liberals vow to change bankruptcy laws) said that there were 2,000.
Not surprisingly, Steven Harper, the leader of the Conservative Party didn't show up. But all the other leaders did. This is Gilles Duceppe, the leader of the Bloc Quebecois. I've never been a BQ fan, but I have to give kudos to Duceppe because he actually is a very good speaker.
This is Jack Layton, leader of the New Democratic Party.
One of the many truisms we saw on signs.
Some of the fun signs that use Nortel in a creative sense... I love the use of the Conservative party logo at the top of the red and blue signs saying 'Constipated'... hahah
Michael Ignatieff, leader of the Liberal Party of Canada.
I don't remember the name of the lady at the microphone (in red). The Conservatives say they don't want to change the 1933 Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act (BIA) or the Company Creditors Arrangement Act (CCAA) to give employees preferred status because it would 'increase the cost of credit'. Not surprisingly, the only Parliamentary report was one done in 1992 that said changing the BIA and CCAA to give employees preferred status would increase the cost of credit 'a lot'. The source for this amazing bit of research were corporate bankers. Wow, talk about unbiased views! Hah! Anyway, back to the lady in red - she is an accountant and studied the effect what these changes would be to the cost of credit. That's easy to do since the laws in the USA and the UK give employees preferred status. The net result would be an increase in the cost of credit of 5 basis points, that's 0.05%. So instead of paying 4% for borrowing money, companies would pay 4.05%. That doesn't seem like a sound argument to me, as bad business decisions would cost a company a lot more than 0.05% of borrowed money.