Tony Clement recently let go of a trial balloon at an editorial board meeting with the Kitchener Record. Clement was commenting on the disastrous Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP) and attempted to pass blame for the massive growth and absence of integrity within the program on to the Liberals.
Clement said, "This program was created prior to [us taking] office, and has grown [since 2002] by 1,818 per cent. That to me sounds a little bit excessive."
In the conservative quest to shape public debate in recent years, no tool has proved more useful than the think-tank. Nobody understood this better than the director of the ultra right-wing U.S.-based ATLAS Foundation, who once stated that his mission was "to litter the world with free-market think-tanks."
Mission accomplished. Certainly the Canadian landscape is cluttered with right-wing think-tanks -- the Fraser Institute, the C.D. Howe Institute, the Montreal Economic Institute, the Atlantic Institute for Market Studies, the Frontier Institute, just to name a few -- all well-funded by a business elite keen to have its message packaged in a manner that makes it appear grounded in serious research.
I won't forget the time I was in the same room as Hillary Clinton: I shed so many tears.
It was June 2012, in Rio de Janeiro. I was at the Rio+20 United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development. It was the first time I realized that, contrary to what Canadians are led to believe, our values and best interests are not represented by our government on the international stage.