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The Conservative government’s “austerity” budget cuts, they’re coming. Huge cuts to social programs and services. Cuts so deep they’ll alter the quality of life of thousands of Canadians. Especially through massive job losses in the public sector. Surely, this is the wrong moment for reckless, ideology-inspired cuts.
Statistics Canada reported last Tuesday that the economy contracted 0.1 per cent in November. In October, the economy recorded zero growth. The budget is expected to slash as much as $8 billion from federal spending.
Not long ago, the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives warned us that the cuts will slash 60 000 jobs. This report: The cuts behind the curtain: How federal cutbacks will slash services and increase unemployment.
Cuts targeting the wrong places.
Prime Minister Stephen Harper now uses every opportunity he gets to remind us that “Conservative values are Canadian values”. Even: “Conservative values are Canadian values”. But how does Harper relate this tired propaganda to Canada’s recent sales of billions worth of military hardware?
In its last six years in power, the Conservative government sold guns, bombs and munnitions to some of the worst human rights abusers in the world: China, Zimbabwe, Tunisia, Libya. Or, yes, Muammar Gaddafi’s Libya! Weren’t these rogue regimes persecuting their own people? Aren’t they now?
The Stockholm International Peace Research Institute ranked Canada was the 12th-largest exporter of military hardware in the world in 2010. I suppose we’re still promoting peace?
As the Canadian military’s Afghan mission wraps up, the mainstream media daily reminds us of our so-called achievements in Afghanistan. Very little is being said about Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s determination to militarize Canadian society and culture.