So after finally finishing this book and taking a look at some updated statistics , I feel as though I have a much better idea of how this country could be made much stronger. Overall I rate the book highly as it chronicled the decline of standards and the race to the bottom mentality that pervades corporate culture and the staggering loss of Canadian sovereignty after NAFTA. Lots of rarely seen statistics were shown to emphasize these points. Indeed the picture that emerges is one where increasingly Canada is losing the ability to control it’s future by allowing the privatisation of so many key industries. Foreign ownership, which is limited in key industries in other countries, has been running wild in Canada for quite some time.
Here are some of the notable quotes from the book which I feel are very historically important for Canada.
“With the US so powerful and her investments becoming greater in Canada, we will have a great difficulty….US foreign policy, at bottom, is to bring Canada into as many situations as possible with a view to leading ultimately to the annexation of our country.” MacKenzie King diary entry, 1943
“We have only been in power for two months, but I can tell you this : give us twenty years, and it is coming, and you will not recognize this country.” Brian Mulroney, House of Commons, Nov.7 , 1984
“The central bank’s policy is driving the country deeper and deeper into debt.” Don McGillivray
“Caring and compassion really means socialism, wealth confiscation, and redistribution.” Conrad Black
“I am not interested in a Canada that would just be a splash on the map,, with a six-letter word scrawled across it. The only Canada I want to preserve is a Canada that can do something for it’s own people, for the hungry two-thirds of the world, for the survival of the planet; not a phantom that can only watch helplessly as we all tumble down a steep place to destuction.” Dr. Eugene Forsey
- 1967 $18 billion
- 1990 $400 billion
- 2007 $727 billion
Government spending as a percentage of GDP (all levels of government)
- 1988 – 44.4%
- 1992 – 53.3%
- 2009 est – 38.5%
Here we see a government that has been shrinking since the NAFTA induced recession ; despite our overall wealth increasing , public investment has been lower.
Corporate Tax as a percentage of GDP
1950 – 4.4%
91-92 – 1.29%
2003 – 1.08%
Here we see the race to the bottom for corporate taxes which is common among countries who have bought into the globalized system of ‘free trade’
- 1975- 4.3%
- 1987- 10.8%
- 1989- 8.3%
- 1994- 17.9%
- 2001- 9.5%
- 2008- 6.1%
This small chart clearly shows the aftereffects of NAFTA and it’s only recently that we have almost fully recovered. The pressures on manufacturers remain though.
Healthcare costs as a percentage of GDP
These figures are a consolation for Canadians as we remain fairly steady despite the right-wing constantly claiming that our healthcare is out of control.
- Canada 9.2%
- USA 12.1%
- Canada 9.9%
- USA 15.2%
Solutions for a better Canada to follow……