Sunday, September 30, 2012

Mulcair does Bay Street

Mulcair gave a speech on Friday to the Canadian Club on the NDP's vision for economic growth. If you read through, I don't think you'll find much that is particularly visionary. The point was probably not to fly too many flags but rather to portray the Mulcair NDP as pro-business and not at all scary.

It was rather mundane. Talking about "partnership between industry, labour and government," for example, is not exactly surprising from an NDP leader. Investing in youth is something you might hear from all parties. There might also be the hint, as you read through, that Mulcair is going to be very conservative in his proposals on economic policy and is speaking in a language that would have been quite welcome on Bay Street:
Governments can’t do everything, nor should they.

The road to prosperity in the 21st century will require a balanced approach.

A thriving private sector will, thankfully, always be at the heart of our national economy, and the engine of our economic growth.

But there’s also a commonsense role for government to play in building the fairer, more prosperous Canada that we all want.

There’s a commonsense role for government to play in creating the right environment of stability and predictability that business relies on to profit.

In ensuring sound economic policy that fosters productivity and competitiveness—without sacrificing long-term sustainability.

And investing in an economy better equipped to meet the demands of the 21st century: In knowledge, in research and development, in a more skilled workforce, in matching skills to jobs.

There is a pretty convincing argument for the role of government in science, education and innovation.
Yes, there's a "pretty convincing" argument for the role of government in science, education and innovation. Tom was clearly going out on a limb there.

Uber-safe and sounding very mainstream. Playing for the middle, take note.

One partisan item that jumped out, however. Just what bit of history was Mulcair trying to rewrite in this excerpt?
Today Canada is held up as an international model for financial regulation, but let’s remember, we were not immune to the calls for financial deregulation that swept across the rest of the developed world a decade ago.

In the 1990’s, Liberal and Reform party leaders alike joined the same chorus. It was only New Democrats who held the anchor against calls for further deregulation.

Today, Canadians are glad that we did, and that Canada did not go down the same path as Europe and the United States.
"Only" New Democrats? What is Mulcair talking about? It was during a Liberal majority government era that bank mergers were blocked. Liberals Jean Chretien and Paul Martin were the principal politicians and party who "held the anchor." I found this funny that Mulcair would go here.

Word cloud via Wordle with no tinkering save for choice of "Blue meets orange" theme which seemed appropriate. See, it's a very boring wordle.