For the last decade, Stephen Harper has been pitching the idea that he and his party -- which has changed its name three times -- have given this country economic stability. But, despite the re-branding, Tim Harper wrote this week that the numbers tell a different story:
In Harper’s Canada, more than four in 10 of us live paycheque to paycheque.
Almost half of us over 50 have barely one-quarter of what we will need for our retirement.
In Harper’s Canada, wealth is the domain of middle-aged white men, but if you are a visible minority or an aboriginal working full time you are earning well below the national median income.
We’re working longer — four in 10 of us are still working at age 66.
One in four of us who own homes are paying more than 30 per cent of our income to keep them, a debt level that many will find unsustainable.
In the absence of a national post-secondary education strategy, university tuitions will triple in a generation, soaring to new levels, saddling our graduates with more debt and forcing Ottawa to forgive more student loans.
No one should be surprised. The same thing has been happening in the United States -- and for a longer period of time. Joseph Stiglitz, in The Price of Inequality, has exposed the economic balderdash behind the phenomenon.
Yet Harper is not a man to be swayed by facts. And -- what is even more surprising -- as a man who claims to be an economist, he pays no attention to statistics. Yet he insists that he knows what he's doing.
It's the 21st century version of The Charge of the Light Brigade