Harper: Canada a welfare state in the worst sense

Harper: Canada a welfare state in the worst sense

Stephen Harper made a speech in 1997 to a group of American conservatives. Some of the stuff he says is um…controversial. Read the full text here.

Here are 3 paragraphs I found particularly enlightening.

First, facts about Canada. Canada is a Northern European welfare state in the worst sense of the term, and very proud of it. Canadians make no connection between the fact that they are a Northern European welfare state and the fact that we have very low economic growth, a standard of living substantially lower than yours, a massive brain drain of young professionals to your country, and double the unemployment rate of the United States.

In terms of the unemployed, of which we have over a million-and-a-half, don’t feel particularly bad for many of these people. They don’t feel bad about it themselves, as long as they’re receiving generous social assistance and unemployment insurance.

That is beginning to change. There have been some significant changes in our fiscal policies and our social welfare policies in the last three or four years. But nevertheless, they’re still very generous compared to your country.

  1. #1 by Darryl on December 15, 2005 - 5:49 am

    I hope we’re not campaigning on what our leaders said in 1997. Unless they would still say it today.

  2. #2 by Leighton Tebay on December 15, 2005 - 9:09 am

    Maybe Harper still believes this stuff. Maybe he doesn’t. I think I’d want to be very sure of who I want to become Prime Minister.

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