Jim Flaherty vows that the budget will be balanced by the next election. But at what cost? Daniel Tencer, of The Huffington Post, writes:
Job creation in Canada this year has been the weakest in a non-recession year in more than a decade, and the low quality of the jobs being created is causing some economists to raise concerns about the country's economy.
Looking at StatsCan’s latest job numbers, released last week, BMO economist Benjamin Reitzes notes that Canada created fewer than 175,000 net jobs in the year to date (meaning all of 2013 except December).
It's not just about a paucity of jobs. It's about the kind of jobs that are being created:
Even the latest numbers for November look negative when digging into the details. While the jobless rate held steady at 6.9 per cent and Canada registered 22,000 new jobs during the month, 20,000 of those were part-time, notes Erin Weir, an economist for the United Steelworkers.
“Broken down another way, 19,000 of the employment increase were people reporting themselves as self-employed,” Weir writes. “Canadian employers actually hired fewer than 3,000 [net] additional employees last month.”
Mr. Flaherty pitches this as progress. But he is not a policy genius. When he was running for the leadership of the (misnamed) Ontario Progressive Conservative Party, he suggested that the way to cure homelessness was to sweep the homeless off the street and throw them in jail.
It is no wonder that Mr. Flaherty is balancing the budget on the backs of the unemployed. Like his proposed solution to homelessness, it is cruel and unusual punishment.