Monday, October 06, 2008

Canada's Failing Economy

Stephen Harper has consistently stated that we are not the United States and that we will not feel the same effect as them regarding their economic crisis. Today Harper is paying a political price for his stay the course approach to our economy and he is now singing a different tune. Harper scoffed at St├ęphane Dion’s plan to convene an economic summit to deal with Canada’s economy if he were elected Prime Minister. Harper, in the national debate, argued that Dion was changing his economic policies in the middle of an election and that now was not the time to experiment with new ideas.

An economic summit sounds like a good idea that has no risk and is hardly an experiment of new ideas. Regardless, the liberals are closing on the conservatives in the polls and Harper had better come up with some ideas of his own regarding our economy or risk being punished in the polls on Election Day.

The US economic crisis is now a global crisis and that includes Canada. The TSX/S&P composite index was down 1,180 points today in early trading, which is a clear signal how uncertain things really are in the marketplace. Interestingly, this is more than twice the drop the Dow Jones index experienced in New York. Maybe Stephen Harper should visit the floor of the TSX and pick up a crash course on how Canada’s economy is at serious risk. Failing that he could heed the Scotia Bank report wherein they are warning their customers that Canada will be hit with a recession as well as the US. The reality is that Stephen Harper has misread the economic indicators or he is trying to keep the voters in the dark. Right now an economic summit of all the stakeholders in our economy sounds like a real good idea. Ottawa, we have a problem and we need to address it now!

Historically, conservatives have a poor record managing Canada’s economy and the liberals have a good record. It is just a matter of fact! Given our failing economy we may be well advised to vote liberal. On the other hand, we could experiment with Stephen Harper to see if the conservatives can get it right this time on our economy.