Trudeau Will Usher In A New Era Of Conservatism
January 1st, 2021 | JH
Justin Trudeau’s plan to implement “The Great Reset” and rearrange our whole economy is sending fear down the spines of conservatives everywhere. This reset will cost a fortune and, the whole Modern Monetary Theory of infinity deficit spending in order to achieve it, is going to fail spectacularly.
So why don’t I care?
There are a few reasons for my take on this.
1. No More Balanced Budgets
Conservatives always play the clean-up crew for big spending progressive governments. I’ve written critically in the past about conservative politicians implementing austerity over the course of many years only to see their hard work squandered the minute some leftist wins a popularity contest (election).
Stephen Harper is the prime example of this. He ran a deficit during the Great Recession of 2009, but then spent six painful years trying to balance the budget and expected a round of applause for doing so. Instead, voters kicked him to the curb and all his fine-tuned balancing was handed over to a deficit promising Justin Trudeau.
Ralph Klein is another good example. Upon retiring Alberta’s debt, he famously held up his big sign at the Calgary Stampede that said, “Paid in Full”. He then stepped down and was immediately replaced by a revolving door of gong-show candidates running huge deficits for the past thirteen years.
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What’s the point of balancing a budget in a democracy? You’re just setting the stage for your opponents to run wild later. Right-wingers have to give up on fiscal conservatism in the context of a democracy and maybe Justin Trudeau’s massive plan will help break these palookas of their principles.
2. The Bankers Take Over
If Justin pushes Canada to the brink and we start facing Argentina-style problems with our finances, then the power will soon be stripped from his hands and the bankers will be calling the shots.
This happened to Paul Martin in the 90s. Our much-lauded finance minister pretends like he’s some kind of genius for balancing the budget in 1995. The reality is that Canada was getting to the point where we couldn’t sell our bonds on the open market. (I guess it didn’t occur to them to simply have the Bank of Canada endlessly buy bonds with printed money?)
Austerity arrived by necessity and fiscal conservatism was thrust upon the country and the provinces. Regardless of their political stripe, the provincial governments HAD to adopt fiscal conservatism because there was no other option. It was just math.
Math is what will ultimately undo Justin’s plan for utopia that is built on free money. Reality will assert itself and math will become the measure. When this happens, bankers will be calling the shots again. Many people will recoil at the idea of bankers calling the shots, but I’d rather have bankers (or if things get really bad, the IMF) running Canada than a bunch absurd woke Liberals. It’s a lot harsher and leaner, but it will help strip away the lame ideological spending and absurd privileged priorities that people like Justin and his ilk are always hungry for.
For example, we are unlikely to ever get private healthcare reform pushed through legislation in a political fashion. There is too much ideological and sentimental attachment for our healthcare delivery system for real reform and innovation to take place. A little bit of what Naomi Klein refers to as “Disaster Capitalism” can create the right conditions for the privatization that Canada desperately needs.
How do we create the disaster that can lead to the brutal capitalism we need? Just let Justin Trudeau do his thing and it will come to pass.
It’s not just healthcare. In the aftermath of Trudeau’s failure there will be many radical right-wing economic reforms that will be possible… painful, but possible. The more Trudeau destabilizes Canada in the short-term, the more incapable we will be of resisting right-wing reform in the long-term. If we’re lucky, we could be setting the stage for Canada to be a Great Britain in 1979, but we won’t even require a Thatcher to come in and fix things... the bankers will provide the marching orders, which makes undoing these future reforms much more difficult.
3. More Separatism
It’s likely that the Liberals are going to win another term and possibly a majority. Fiscal issues take years to bake into massive problems. In the near-term, all this deficit spending is applauded, both by voters and markets. The bar tab delivered to the guy with the hangover is never the fun part.
Conservative voters are anticipating that bar tab and are always dismayed that non-Conservative voters can’t anticipate the bill’s arrival. A nice big juicy vote of confidence in Justin Trudeau by the rest of Canada might provide the shock treatment Western Canadians require in order to give up on national politics completely.
It took three consecutive wins by Pierre Trudeau to kick off a Western Separatist movement forty years ago. It quickly ran out of steam when people thought Brian Mulroney was going to save the day. (spoiler alert, he didn’t.)
When people realized Mulroney and the PCs weren’t the answer, they tried Preston Manning’s Reform Party. (They failed to heed the warning that if a system requires reform, its not worth reforming.) They then tried to broaden the political party approach with the Canadian Alliance led by Stockwell Day. That failed too. So, the modern Conservative Party of Canada was formed as a merger between the Canadian Alliance and the old Progressive Conservatives. Harper won and we ended up back in Mulroney-era territory. When Harper finished ten years in power with nothing to show for it and another Trudeau at the helm, many conservatives realized that the answers we are seeking aren’t to be found in traditional political outlets.
The forty years of diversion away from Western nationalism was an unfortunate, but perhaps necessary distraction. People had to feel like they gave traditional Canada every chance that could be mustered. Most people are now jaded enough and disillusioned enough to know deep down that Canada isn’t the answer. It’s not about Pierre or Justin Trudeau, or equalization, or reforming the Senate, or laurentian “elites”, or Quebec, or pipelines…it’s about the dysfunction of Canada and our need as Westerners to free ourselves from the oppressive incompetency of a failing national structure and the people who vote for it.
"Austerity arrived by necessity and fiscal conservatism was thrust upon the country and the provinces."
A big win by Liberals at this time, in this context, will be the sort of annihilation of hope that people in the West desperately need.
Trudeau’s deficit madness will have beautiful unintended consequences. It will wake up Conservative voters to the idiocy of advocating fiscal conservatism in a democracy. It will obliterate Canada’s ability to control its own destiny by placing its fiscal abilities into the hands of capitalist bankers and international markets. It will strip away the hope Western Canadians have in patriotism and fuel a new and bolder round of separatist momentum.
Ultimately, we could be looking at a multi-phased solution to many of the problems that plague Canada’s milquetoast conservatism and the irony is that we will owe it all to Justin Trudeau!
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