Currently Canadian per-capita income is lower than American by $9200. Only Alberta would be able to compete on income and GDP per
capita with US states. All other Canadian states would find themselves near the
bottom of the US republic in all economic per capita categories. This is
reflected by the fact that on average Canadians enjoy a 30% lower living
standard than Americans ? all costs and incomes included. This means that most
Canadian jurisdictions are competitive with the likes of Alabama and
It is only through accessing the US market that Canadians are reasonably wealthy. But compared to the Americans the Canadians are poor
cousins. In the 2007 Economist world in figures Canada ranked 23rd in GDP per
capita [US is 9th]; 13th in GDP per capita with purchase power parity [US is
4th]; 12th in economic freedom [US is 11th]; and 8th in industrial output [US is
1]. No matter which way you spin the numbers as a Canadian the facts are pretty
obvious ? you live in a poorer country, with higher taxes and more government.
A cursory glance through political and economic history suggests that the above factors are hardly conducive to wealth creation or the further
advancement of civilization.
Nothing rings more hollow than Canadiana?s mommy-state obsession with controlling the economy and regulating all aspects of
personal life. The National Post?s report [found at
highlights some obvious failures of big statism. None of the items would
surprise those interested in economics or the political-economy of failed
systems T.Y. Hilton Camo Jersey , but apparently they are part of the Canadian psyche ? untouchable and immune to reform.
As the Post reports ? and there is no disputing their facts - the Canadian economy is still protected by a panoply of
foreign ownership restrictions, corporate subsidies Andrew Luck Camo Jersey , marketing boards, provincial trade barriers and other regulations that ?coddle? domestic companies and raise consumer prices.
Canadians imagine themselves as fair-minded free-traders struggling with the
giant US economic machine for the spoils of economic war. Hardly. Whilst
romantic this image is about as relevant as believing that ice hockey is the
world?s most important sport.
The result of the mommy-state obsession to rule and protect? For consumers it means of course higher prices and reduced
choice. For businesses it results in lower levels of innovation and lagging
productivity growth. As reported by the Post flagging productivity growth is one
of the key reasons Canada's per capita income is now $9 Ryan Kelly Rush Jersey ,200 below the United States, the gap having tripled since the early 1980s Quincy Wilson Rush Jersey , Ontario's Institute for Competitiveness and Prosperity (ICP).
Whole sectors of the economy are walled off from competition. In total they constitute over 50% of the Canadian economy. Health
Care [12%]; Telecoms; Transport; Banking; Agriculture; Lumber [very limited
market forces allowed]; and Media are off limits to majority foreign ownership
and investment. Now of course the Federal government is eyeing the oil sector in
Alberta for some sort of nationalization and redistribution [under some lovely
name such as ?Our children?s future, our environmental commitment and save the
old people Malik Hooker Rush Jersey , united worker?s fund?].
In Telecoms foreign ownership restrictions [at 20%] mean that Canadians pay 30-350% more for telecom
rates then more competitive markets in the US and Europe. OECD statistics show
that a moderate cell phone user in Canada pays a monthly fee of $48 a month. In
Denmark it's $9. Imagine the purchasing power that would be unleashed if telecom
In agriculture Canadian consumers pay import tariffs on milk of 241% and 299% on butter, 245% on cheese Braden Smith Rush Jersey , 237% on yogurt and 238% on eggs. These tariffs are used to price support the marketing boards that are monopolies which sell
agricultural product. In effect these price supports are transfers from
consumers to politically important lobby groups in agriculture. It is hard to
see how this squares with superior Canadian morality and intelligence. The poor
of course suffer the most through higher food prices.
As the Post reports the idea that since other countries stupidly subsidize their farmers
than Canadians must is laughably ignorant. ?If the United States wants to
subsidize an inordinate amount to cotton growers and if we want to trade for
that cotton, then essentially what we're getting is the U.S. taxpayer
subsidizing our use of cotton Darius Leonard Rush Jersey ,? says Jason Clemens [of the Fraser Institute], ?How is that a bad thing for Canadians Quenton Nelson Rush Jersey , if we're getting cheaper cotton??
But businesses are also being subsidized. In another article I wrote that Canada
spends 2-3 % of its GDP on business and agricultural subsidies. [This is just
from the Federal government and ignores other governmental levels of subsidy].
This translates into about $20-30 billion per annum. Lumber consumes $4 billion;
agriculture $11 billion; and industry about $5 billion. Add in regional
subsidies and targeted subsidy programs and the number is far higher. Again
these programs are simply transfers from the average taxpayer to firms, unions
and executives with no transparency T.Y. Hilton Rush Jersey , no return on investment and no accountability. How is this moral and just?
The Post article references a report by the Canadian Taxpayers Federation [www.taxpayer] called ?On The Dole?. The ?do
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