Welcome to our Canada.

A recent e-mail from a regular reader in the Atlantic Provinces served as a reminder that Canada has not always been as welcoming as we are to the recent Syrian refugees. And when the minister of immigration said there will be more, we should realize that Canada needs ten times as many. Newcomers to Canada build our economy. They stimulate growth in housing. They create and fill new jobs. They bring industry and effort,

The current doldrums of the Canadian economy means we need new consumers. We need the pressure on the housing market. And what we desperately need is to rebuild our ability to manufacture for business and consumers. For too long we have been reaching for trading markets without the manufactured goods that help double our efforts at creating wealth.

It has been amazing to us over the past nine years that the Conservative theorists who preach the gospel of Wealth of Nations’ Adam Smith gave the back of their hand to Canada’s failing manufacturing sector. We watched everything from locomotive to food production head south. We watched helplessly as a misguided government tried to promote the export of the most expensive and most polluting synthetic crude oil in the world from tar sands.

It took the economic challenge of Saudi Arabia and its despotic rulers to bring our economy to its knees. The Saudi’s keep adding to their vast wealth at $36 per barrel of crude oil. Canada is simply ploughing money into the ground in trying to continue mining the tar sands at that low a price.

One of the challenges for our new government is to repair the long-term damage the previous government did to Canada’s reputation around the world. It has to start with our major trading partner—the United States of America. There have been signs or some turn-around already but there are also those who are reserving judgement until they see how our new government performs.

But it is going to take more than pouring money into infrastructure to pull the Canadian economy back to health. We are going to have to welcome more new Canadians. We are going to have to invest in ideas, invention and new technologies. We need to challenge.

We heard the cant of the right wing the other day when there was no action from the meeting of finance ministers to discuss pensions. What we heard from the naysayers was that we cannot afford it. What Canada needs to hear is: Here’s how we can do it.

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Copyright 2015 © Peter Lowry

Complaints, comments, criticisms and compliments can be sent to peter@lowry.me

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