By Ted Belman
American Thinker has two great articles on Canada, past and present, in response to Harper’s Conservative victory. Harper’s agenda borders on revolutionary.
[..] What does this mean? Future Canadian elections may, themselves, be different. Harper has promised to end government subsidies to political parties; the Liberal Party, which has trouble raising campaign funds, may find it hard to survive reliance on voluntary contributions. Conservatives may also change the apportionment seats in the House of Commons. At present the system denies the western provinces of Alberta and British Columbia an equal share of seats in the House of Commons. Harper might also reform the Canadian Senate, which is obstructionist and undemocratic. Conservatives now have a narrow majority in the Senate (and a majority in the House of Commons), which is just enough clout to reform the upper chamber. (It helps that Layton of the New Democratic Party actually wants to abolish the Senate, and he is now Leader of the Opposition.)
The domestic policies of the new, strong Conservative government will increase production of Canadian oil. Harper, the son of an Albertan oil company executive, understands the combination of exploration risk and fluctuating market prices which make the petroleum industry a “boom or bust” activity. Harper’s government will increase tax incentives for oil production, prevent nutty environmentalism, and allow the unrestricted export of oil (all of which will push prices and production to honest market levels.) Less noticed but also important, Harper’s Conservatives will abolish the Canadian Wheat Board, a state monopoly which artificially keeps the price of wheat and barley high. Harper will allow market forces to set the price and production of the vast wheat fields of the Prairie Provinces. Harper has promised to reduce the corporate tax rate and sale tax rates and enact budgets which support a strong Canadian Dollar. All of these actions will keep Canada a stable and prosperous nation, which is our national interest.
While abortion and gay marriage are important to social conservatives, they face a very threat to their right to speak in Canada, and other nations, because of that semantic Frankenstein, “Hate Crimes.” A nasty and, itself, hateful application of those nebulous laws allow the Left in many nations to simply define expression it dislikes as hateful and make that expression criminal. Canada, the Left there proudly boasts, does not have a First Amendment and that honestly held, even factually correct, expression can be punished because it offends certain people.
That means a mullah in a mosque can say “Death to Jews and Christians!” with impunity but that a Jew or Christian who reports “Mullahs are calling for the death of Jews and Christians” can be guilty of a “Hate Crime.” The threat to liberty from the totalitarian Left in Canada and Europe is serious stuff; just ask Ann Coulter or Mark Steyn or Geert Wilders, the Dutch politician who is on trial for criticizing Islam and whose innocence cannot be established by proving that what he said was true. If Harper wants to preserve Canada, he must fight Leftist censorship there. If he wages that battle and wins, then his big victory election means much to Canada and to the world, but if Harper ignores the drift of Canada towards totalitarianism, then all else he does will mean nothing. No one should doubt the ferocity of those dragons which Harper must slay to save the soul of Canada, but no one should doubt that the salvation of Canada from that evil is worth brave battle and much sacrifice.
By the end of the Second World War, Canada had the third-largest surface navy in the world. The Canadian Army took Juno Beach at Normandy on D-Day. Canada, with a population of only eleven to twelve million, put over 1.1 million men under arms, with the world’s fourth largest air force. Some 45,000 Canadians died.
What? Canada — today’s pacifist, multicultural playground, refuge of American draft-dodgers during the Vietnam War — was once a major military power? Really?
Really. By 1945, Canada’s navy even included three aircraft carriers. [..]
What happened after 1945 is only too familiar: big government liberalism, a welfare state, pacifism, a heavy dose of white guilt, open immigration and political correctness. The result: by choice and not by necessity, Canada hasn’t been a world player since about 1953.
All told, Canada’s Liberal Party ruled for 69 years of the 20th century and the first five years of the 21st. Multiculturalism is now deeply entrenched — no more so than in the tender topics of Quebec and the use of the French language. So is secularism at home and multilateralism abroad.
Although Canada’s population and national prosperity have soared since 1945, its defense spending collapsed. By the time the Liberals were finally ousted in 2006, Canada’s military expenditures had shrunk to around 1.5 % of GDP.
However, since 9/11, Canada has fought as part of the Coalition Forces in Afghanistan. Its nine-year mission — during which 154 Canadian troops have died — ends this year. The long-range snipers of the Princess Patricia’s Light Infantry now hold the world record for the longest kill shot: 1.44 miles.