|Dumb and Dumber|
Tim Hudak, the leader of Progressive Conservative Party of Ontario, was on TVO's The Agenda last night talking about labour market reform. It's apparent that Mr. Hudak's understanding of the global economy and labour markets is simplistic; furthermore, his proposals are an explicit attack on the middle class in Ontario. Mr. Hudak's ideas have little to do with job creation or economic growth, rather it's a thinly veiled ideological attack on the next generation of workers through a low-wage, no rights agenda.
The proposals focus on destabilizing Ontario's labour market, deregulating key legal protections, and creating a right to work state. This is engaging a race to the bottom that would push countless young workers, children, and senior citizens into poverty. The terrain of damage that Mr. Hudak would leave in his wake would make the actions of Mike Harris, his mentor, pale in comparison.
Mr. Hudak hopes to accomplish his dubious goals through a strategy that decimates governmental institutions which protect workers, attacking the ability of organized labour to work towards better working conditions, and erode the democratic rights of citizens to respond to changing social and economic times. If these proposals were ever enacted the social stability and economic fabric within Ontario would be shredded in favour of pure market forces which would leave us reeling for generations to come. In an era of rising income equality and profound uncertainty it takes a radically unbalanced mind to advance ideas that will literally throw millions of people into crisis.
I urge each person reading this to study Mr. Hudak's white paper in detail and educate yourself about what he's proposing. His strength comes from passing off a simplistic view of the economy as a workable innovative strategy that will serve as a cure-all for our woes. It's easy to buy into a fiction like that, but given the complexity of our globalized interwoven global economy there aren't any simple fixes anymore.
Simply put, the Ontario that Mr. Hudak wants is gone forever and no matter how many times he clicks his heels it won't come back. What's left is a more difficult precarious future reality, but one still filled with opportunity and hope if we're able to confront change in an organized fashion. That's not what Mr. Hudak is proposing, it's quite the opposite with a Russian-roulette approach to the future economic prosperity of Ontario - this is the politics of fear, division, and insecurity.
To learn more about some of the ideas that Mr. Hudak has been proposing as of late, see: here and here. Finally, take a look at this video from the 2011 provincial election where the three leaders debate job creation (at the time I found each of the parties' job creation strategies to be sophomoric at best), see: