As a traditional sign of optimism, Finance Ministers in Canada buy new shoes on budget-presentation day. In recessionary times, the symbolism of opting to shine or repair their shoes sends a message of frugality from on high.
For example, Alberta Finance Minister Doug Horner underlined his austerity budget by shining up a two-year-old pair. And, former federal Finance Minister Jim Flaherty unveiled a thrifty budget in re-soled brogues. The stewards of our taxes wear big shoes and wield their metaphors well.