As his honeymoon ends, the Canadian prime minister is in a tough place when it comes to confronting its southern neighbor.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau may have already burned the bridges he built, both to the left and to the right, that won him a majority government in 2015.
Being a billionaire isn’t just about being rich; it’s about being mind-bogglingly rich — rich beyond most people’s comprehension.
And yet the mega-fortunes being amassed these days by the newly emergent class of billionaires — and the enormous influence and control this gives them over our economy and politics — barely registers as a political issue.
What makes this particularly odd is that we’re told we live in a time of popular revolt against the “elites” and that Donald Trump just won the U.S. presidency because of his “populism.”
Of course, billionaire Trump, with his Wall Street cabinet and his sweetheart tax cut for billionaires, has turned “populism” into just another fake news concept.
Canadian capitalism is in crisis, with household debt reaching a record high 166.9 per cent of disposable income and about 208 per cent of GDP, and wage stagnation is a primary cause.
Richard Vague told the Globe and Mail “any country whose private-debt-to-GDP ratio goes beyond 150 per cent and that has a five-year growth rate of 18 per cent or greater in that ratio experiences a financial crisis at some point.” The Globe says Canada has already passed both benchmarks in its ongoing borrowing binge.
Bill C-51 was opposed by the Green Party, the Bloc Québecois and the NDP, which mounted a filibuster in Parliament. The Liberals under Justin Trudeau chose to support the legislation. But in the 2015 federal election, they promised to repeal the bill’s “problematic elements” and introduce new legislation that would strengthen parliament’s oversight.
Fifteen months after the election, Bill C-51 remains in place, and one assumes that spy and law enforcement agencies are making use of their enhanced powers.
It’s been one day since human sinkhole Kevin O’Leary joined the Conservative leadership race as candidate no. 14 and already the Canadian media is working to make it seem like this isn’t a giant national embarrassment.
Now that the world’s most ambitious and depressing performance art piece has concluded (titled “Dumpster Fire, 2016: A Tragedy in 12 Parts”), it’s time to roll up our sleeves. Federal Parliament reconvenes in just about four weeks and we have some work to do if we want to stave off a tide of right-wing populism.