By urging fiscal restraint and encouraging austerity, Harper and his G8 summit colleagues in 2010 totally misread the direction of the world economy, and have made a bad economic situation much worse.
On this week's episode of Progressive Voices, I speak with Rou Reynolds of the band Enter Shikari on today's culture of war and austerity, the Zeitgeist and Occupy movements, and more.
Rather than jumping on the hand-wringing bandwagon about disinterested, apathetic youth, I'm more concerned about pervasive and consistent government apathy towards youth.
So, it's official. No matter what happens -- NDP, Liberal or Tory -- Ontario is getting austerity.
The Harper Conservatives may think they have a right to govern as they please, and they act as though the opposition parties have to accept what they decide: political reality suggests otherwise.
I Read The News Today, Oh Boy!
Austerity fever is catching, and it isn't a pleasant disease. Symptoms include unemployment, growing wealth gaps, crumbling infrastructure and more. We diagnose it and give some health tips.
Budget 2012 certainly spreads the pain around -- paying special attention to some of the most vulnerable. But it's a lot less generous when it comes to sharing the recovery.
The fact that the Harper government is giving people at least 10 years to prepare for two years of life without an important source of income, hardly makes it OK.
This year's federal budget is less a budget than a framework economic document that includes the gutting of environmental assessment in the name of the economy.
Despite its size and the hundreds of measures it details, Harper's 2012 budget demonstrates just how small-minded their vision is.