While NDP supporters might be celebrating last night’s election results, the reality is that it was an umitigated disaster for Canada.
The Tory majority will mean more tax breaks for corporations, the gutting of social services and cultural institutions, the widening of the already cavernous income gap, the public defunding of political parties, and the continual sell off of Canada’s resources and companies. Let alone the decline of democratic debate and venues. We will see more G-20 crackdowns on activists and a growing Americanization of the political culture.
And the NDP has played their role in all of this. If you look at the results, they profited from the demise of the Liberal Party and Bloc. When the NDP saw they could take seats from the Liberals, they began attacking Michael Ignatieff over, of all things, his attendance in Parliament. The NDP did not make gains at the expense of the Tories. As a result, what we saw was a predictable splitting of the vote. And Jack Layton should have seen this coming. He can feel happy about his party’s historic win, but the Canada we all know will not exist by the time the Tories are chased from power, whenever that is (and don’t count on that happening in four years time).
This election reflected the utter bankruptcy of bourgeois politics. While the Tories used their stewardship of the economy as their selling card, the NDP and Liberals did not challenge this record. The NDP and Liberals failed to make hay over the fact that Canadians are worse off economically than ever before, with the average Canadian family burdened by $100,000 in personal debt (overall consumer debt is $1.5-trillion and growing). We have lost 400,000 manufacturing jobs since 2002. We have sold off most of our major corporations. Even high tech companies like RIM are in deep trouble, while Nortel was broken up and handed over to foreign competitors. We no longer have a nationally-owned steel industry. The income gap has grown worse.
But where were these issues being discussed? Not by the opposition parties.
The NDP was, in the end, sectarian. And we will all pay a horrendous cost for their political expediency.
The NDP and Liberals have to stop splitting the vote. They have to merge or cut a deal. The NDP might be rejoicing, but they have their fair share of blood on their hands.
- The Ford Nation, Perils of Populism and Public Choice (November 28th, 2013)
- How Harper can avoid turning a Budget Implementation Bill into a Duffy budget bill (November 27th, 2013)
- The Perils of Passivity (November 7th, 2013)
- When Good Data Goes Bad: The NHS2011 (September 12th, 2013)
- Economists for Linda McQuaig (September 3rd, 2013)