The Parallel Parliament

Glen Pearson

Posts tagged “wealth

A Decade of Doubt

Posted on September 21, 2018

Confusion.  Confusion everywhere.  Confusion in the House itself and in Question Period.  Confusion in caucus meetings.  Confusion in the various committees.  Confusion at events.  Confusion when socializing with other MPs.  Confusion in calls home to spouses and children.  Confusion from the top leadership levels to the lowliest backbencher. Confusion among economists. Confusion among bureaucrats. Confusion in the media and among citizens.  Again, confusion everywhere. A decade ago I was sitting in Parliament – one of slightly over 300 MPs trying to figure out what just hit us.  Had the American stock market crashed?  Was Wall Street doing anything?  What about Canadian securities?  Is this going global or confined to America? It didn’t take long to understand that the Great Recession of 2008 was upon us and, like…

Revolution or Evolution: The Only Two Choices Left

Posted on September 11, 2018

We have reached the stage where we actually have no idea of what is going to happen.  Here’s a list of questions to get us in the mood for a more serious kind of discussion.  Some are cheeky, but they need to be asked regardless. Is free trade ever going to be as great as past leaders and economists told us it would be? Will the Trump Doctrine, or lack of it, blow up the rest of the world? Can Canada keep its delicate federalism in place when the inevitable threats of separation arise? Will good paying jobs ever come back? Do the terms “post-democracy” or “post-capitalist” mean that both of those systems are about to be relegated to the history books? Are citizens…

Humanity is About the Workers, Not the Work

Posted on September 3, 2018

With Labour Day upon us, it might be a good time to ask a simple question: “What about the workers?” Seriously.  We’ve been talking about everything from what industry requires for the better part of two decades and workers are meant to just deal with any changes that have been implemented – most often without their input.  We demand citizen participation In our politics but tolerate an economy that sees less labour input, or even rights, each successive year. A good example of this the World Economic Forum’s recent report, published by its Council of Work, Gender and Education.  Its co-chair, Stephane Kasriel, posted last December what he believed to be the four predictions on the future of work, based largely upon the activities…

Capitalism in the Crosshairs

Posted on August 28, 2018

In the midst of what was perhaps Donald Trump’s worst week of his presidency emerged a Gallup poll whose findings got lost in all the political intrigue.  To quote the poll directly: “The major change among Democrats has been a less upbeat attitude toward capitalism, dropping to 47 percent positive this year — lower than in any of the three previous measures.  In contrast, 57 percent of Democrats have a positive view of socialism.” This is significant when you think about it.  It’s the first time in over a decade that the favourable view of Democrats concerning capitalism has dipped below 50 percent – lower even than the pessimism that followed the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis and Wall Street bailouts. To emphasize…

Where Are We Headed Exactly?

Posted on May 8, 2018

Recently I spoke to a group of business leaders on the subject of “wealth and social policy.”  The audience consisted of sincere women and men who had grown concerned that with titanic amounts of wealth being generated in the developed world, little was changing for those whose lives remain in economic stagnation and whose prospect for gainful employment recedes each successive year.  In all of this, governments themselves seemed particularly ineffective. In my city of London, Ontario, recent research revealed that 48% of our workforce is either in precarious or vulnerable work conditions, with little in the way of benefits, pensions, or even a future.  It is a reality that begs the obvious question: if all the wealth is resulting in such little meaningful work,…

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