Sunday, January 22, 2012

Carney Drops a Bombshell

Kudos to Bank of Canada governor, Mark Carney, for coming right out and warning that the crippled U.S. economy is unlikely to ever fully recover.

It’s going to take a number of years before they get back to the U.S. that we used to know — in fact, they are not, in our opinion, ultimately going to get back to the U.S. that we used to know,” he said.

Carney pointed to China as a market with great potential and as a place where Canada is currently under-represented, but cautioned it would take time to enhance trade between the two countries.

“It’s going to take multiple visits, multiple initiatives. Not, obviously, from the public sector alone, but clearly a focus from the private sector,” Carney said. “That is absolutely essential for developing our future and it’s a key element of our medium-term growth.”

Reagan and his contemporaries, Mulroney and Thatcher, set America's demise in motion with their delusional free trade notions.  Reagan's apostles continued his work, gutting America's manufacturing base and, with it, displacing its once vibrant and robust middle class that manufacturing once anchored and nourished to make way for what became casino capitalism.

Yet a permanently degraded economy is but one wound America has suffered.  There are others.   These include the greatest levels of inequality in the developed world, class warfare, the strangling of social and economic mobility, and the evolution of the United States as the first true warfare state in modern history.   All of these open wounds will continue to sap American strength.   In America, as in Canada, the ability of the government to intervene to set these troubles right seems to have been lost.   Now it will be up to the American people to compel change.


Anonymous said...

And yet Canada continues down the same road as the USA did. We are only a few miles behind, and now that they've crashed into the ditch, we're catching up.

The Mound of Sound said...

It's ironic but we've been saved from plunging into the same morass as the Americans by the very thing that once drove our inferiority complex, our resource-based economy. When America reached its crunch time we remained hewers of wood and drawers of water and that, in conjunction with the Liberals prudence toward banking expansion, spared us from their fate.

thwap said...

I think Canadian economic statistics (such as the unemployment rate) are more accurate than they are in the USA and that they've managed to hide the enormity of the income crisis from themselves but reality has now shown them how bad things have gotten.

The Mound of Sound said...

Public awareness is a mortal threat to the oligarchs. It is precisely why fiends like the Koch brothers fund movements to misdirect and misinform ordinary Americans, to make them fearful and direct their anger onto others, sometimes onto themselves. We have been able to watch as a tightly corporatized media embued these movements with credibility and did nothing to expose the chicanery behind them.

Little by little it's beginning to finally dawn on me the magnitude of the social, political and economic transformation we have watched spread through the United States since Reagan set it on its path to demise. Terrorists, by contrast, haven't left a scratch.

Anonymous said...

Aren't we still on our way in the same direction, just not so far along though? With more free trade agreements in the works, and foreign trade zones being talked about at the ports, the possibility of catching "dutch disease", we are putting all our eggs in the bitumen basket. I do agree on the Liberal banking prudence, but Harper has 4 years at least to undo as much of Canada's progressive policies as he can.

The Mound of Sound said...

Sure, Anon, we're heading in the same direction. I don't think Harper's instincts would let him do anything else. He's the most authoritarian leader Canada has ever known.

Harper's weakness is that he's unable to envision a future that doesn't uphold the status quo. All of his policy making reflects this. It's utterly one-dimensional, inflexible.

His fundamentalist bent surfaces in his inability to see the world as it is, as it may become, instead of as he wishes it was and will continue to be.

Harper's belief system is faith-based. Reality is what you believe it is. Others find reality in what is demonstrably proven to be.

A perfect example of this is Harper's prison fetish. When he instructed his caucus how to vote on that one he expressly told them to ignore all the statistics showing years of steady decline in crime and, instead, go with their gut instincts. He believes crime is soaring and, irrational though his logic may be, that's all there is to it.

I often wonder how Harper's scriptural fundamentalism comes to bear on his indifference to global warming. That he has government scientists trussed and gagged speaks volumes.

I think Harper works very deliberately to place a secular face on his theocratic compulsions.

Anyong said...

Canada has always had the choice of markets with China. However, we have not ever had the gumption to swing the bull by the horns. Now, Harper will have to eat his words if he has any hope in winning over the Chinese even though they are hungry for Tar Sands oil.

bcwaterboy said...

We are certainly heading in the same direction as the US in gutting our valuable manufacturing base. I find it interesting how this very obvious fact about our economy (the export of well-paying jobs) is never fully exposed and examined by any politician. There is no way that an economy can grow or even remain neutral when day after day we lose buying power of the average citizen. No amount of "job creation" is going to replace those valuable manufacturing jobs, once they disappear, they're gone, and we should be very concerned about that. Unfortunately most of the very people losing those jobs voted for this very strange and psychotic political party that cares nothing about reality.

The Mound of Sound said...

Workers always take it in the neck in Petro-States like Canada. That is why Harper is re-writing immigration rules to allow the Tar Sanders to import cheap "guest worker" labour just like the Saudis do. Pretty soon Third World labour rates will set the bar for Tar Sand employment. Of course Harper promises they'll only be allowed to take jobs Canadians won't take. He leaves out the bit about " three dollars an hour."

That's why, BCW, I have concluded that Parliament has so many Petro-Pols on both sides of the aisle in the Commons among every party that we can no longer rely on them to protect Canada and advance the best interests of ordinary Canadians. If anything, we have to find ways to work around Parliament.

There was a time we could count on the opposition parties to mobilize Canadians to turn on a government that was no longer fit to govern. The Libs are in disarray and the NDP have shown they can't find their ass with both hands and a mirror.

Anonymous said...

If we're going to be courting China, I sure hope the Chinese don't take a look at anything from our Conservative politicians. Evil communist this and evil communism that, even when the "communist" is actually defending fundamental principles of capitalism.