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day 5

The corporate offensive for globalization, competitiveness and austerity.
Political ideologies and parties on a left (proletariat) -right (bourgeoisie) spectrum
1789 - senior managements in the estate general (opposed monarchy- secularizationbreaking away from the church)
Left- Supporters of the revolution
Right- Supporters of Kings and churches
Europe today
Left- N.D.P, democratic socialists, communists
Right- Conservatives, neo conservatives (narrower spectrum)
U.S.A today:
Left- social democrats,
Conservatism( toryism) - focus on protecting privilege and social order ( resented state
Liberalism- focus on the rights of the individual , with the market as the key economic driver
Socialism- Focus on sharing, equality, democratic control, and a greater role for social,
public or co-operative ownership.
Neoliberalism- a return to classic economic ideals of the 1800’s
Celebrating free markets and individualism
Ymca- young men's (social service agency)
Did work in poorer areas in the past
(york u was informally known as jewish u as all ethnic minorities were welcome & refugees)
(york had the most progressive scholars in one campus)
(those ideals have been corrupted over the years)
Politics of austerity- rising tuition costs- longer & bitter strikes
Tax cut- for the rich
(york should return to its original, pure values)
Adam smith- make the economy grow but workers have to suffer & pay for that expansion
Where do you fit on the ideological spectrum?
left of- centre
(life situation can determine)
Problems for capitalism in the early 1970’s
Profit rates from 1940’s mid 1960’s = 15 - 20%
Late sixties > sharp decline
Faced with
Falling profits
Rising wages
Stagflation ( high unemployment and high inflation)
Labour militancy
1. Changed production
2. Changed public policy
3. Changed people's attitude
a) Outsource to where costs are cheaper
> close factories and shift production to low costs areas overseas
B) contract our work to lower cost supplies
>Domestically (in Canada)
c) switch to “flexible” production
d) weaken unions
i.Downsize , hire non-union, exploit divisions
ii. Outsource/contract out
iii. Small batch production - just in time
( mexican workers are demanding and receiving higher wages)
Brampton, used to be a major factory ( the agency gives 10% of your wages)
(no worker benefits- can be unemployed anytime)
(they wanted workers to be flexible and accommodating)
( monopoly position- phone companies , don’t want to reduce prices)
Change policies
Privatize public enterprises
Downsize government agencies
Offer tax cuts> reduce public spending
Seek public-private partnerships
Restructure social programmes > increase insecurity
Change from keynesian so stimulating demand for goods and services, and thereby creating
To monetarists “supply side” policies that try to stimulate the economy by lowering taxes and
restricting the money supply
a) Liberalize trade + deregulation + privatization
3) Change the culture
Celebrate greed and selfishness
> not sharing and caring
Celebrate individualism - not society
From we to me - greed is good!
Encourage competitiveness - not cooperation
Worship success and celebrities
Blame the poor for being lazy
For Social justice to poor shaming
Blaming victims of circumstances
Democracy on the rise - parents and grandparents voted
More and more people got the right to vote over the past 200 years
Citizens used their power to regulate the economy and improve their lives
Democrats expanded, but unevenly. Capitalism
1970’s - Business leaders complained about an “excess of democracy”
That government had grown too large and interventions it
The business organized think tanks e.g. BCNI - Business Council on National Issues
They pushed back the government - people became tired, cynical with the government
Neo-liberals tell us;
You are a consumer
You have a choice
You can express your individuality by what you purchase> buy the good life
The poor deserve to be poor
Who were the architects of neo-liberalism of canada?
Why is this group important
Who belongs to the group?
Why was the group formed?
150 Ceo’s from top transnational companies
The most powerful interest group
148 men, two men
147 whites, 3 japanese (toyota, honda, nissan)
Finance ( Royal Bank, Great West Insurance)
Tdl group bring you tim hortons
What their objective- less spending on education
Soa s to make their companies more competitive ( increase profits)
(shareholders- or invest in another company)
(people invest in stocks- computer just put money where the biggest profits are made)
(depersonalized 0
- Free enterprise
Chair- Power corporation of Canada
Paul Desmarais - Incorporated in 1925, Power corporation of Canada is a diversified
international management and holding company with interests in companies in the financial
services, communications and other business sectors.
(repatist capitalists- much more dog-eat-dog mentality)
Tom D’aquino - Fromer Business Council President and CEO
“The most powerful influence on public policy formation in Canadian history” Peter
(A lawyer in british columbia)
Growing wealth ( for the rich)
Declining fortunes (for the rest)
Income of the highest earning ceO on the TSX increased 27% in 2010
If Canada is so rich, Why Can’t We Afford Social Services?
The economy grows while social spending declines
Corporate income taxes is going down whilst public income taxes was increasing
Manufacturers Sales Tax - eliminated
Goods and Services Tax - introduced
Tax havens- between 1993 and 2003 , the five big banks used their offshore affiliates to
avoid paying 16 billion dollars in Canadian taxes (University of Quebec, Canada)
Imagine what 16 billion could do for child care programs, extra hospitals beds and tuition
The business Council’s goal:
To make government serve the needs of business
To work in partnership - with the state as a junior partner
1982 - changed everything
Free investment - corporations
Trade deals:
Liberal and Conservatives Governments have signed over 17 such deals
Freedom (humanitarian version) vs. Freedom CCCE version
The business Council opposed the Kyoto Protocol / Accords
It now champions market-based solutions e.g. cap and trade system
(business scammed the protocol)
( e.g, cement worker- they have to pay tax to the government , if they were below their limit
they would trade their credit with a company wanting to pollute more)
Canadian citizens used to own the assests, enjoy the services and share the revenuses:
Air Canada- Sold
Petro Canda- Sold
Candain National Railways- Sold
Ontario Hydro- being sold?
Privitization of Public Enterprises
35 years of growth and decline
BCNI / CCCE celebrate their 35th anniversary
Demcoracy at risk:
Cooprorations translate their econmic power into political indleucne
Lost of popular control (sovereignty)
Increasing repression?
Northern edge:
How candadians Can Triumph in the Global Economy by David- Stewart
Power in numbers- 7 and a half trillion dfollars of assests
Earning reenues - 1.1 billion dollars
Employing 1.7 million Caandians down from 2 million in 1982
(Do banking onlien or at the atm - very few brank tellers)
Why the business Council so powerful…
Good Political orginization:
They are the frist to organize
They have a long term vision
They focus on a few critical areas, and do good research. They speak everyday language
and define what is common sense.
d) They from “task forces” to watch the government and offer new ideas.
e) They champion the antional interest
What can citizens do?
36 million Canadian citizens
7.5 billion golbal citizens
Reassert our power and restore democracy:
Raise public awareness…
Elect politicians ready to put citizens first
Avoid int’l agreements that put co-operate interests ahead of citizens
Ban co-orporate contributions to candidates and parties
How dow e sensure an economy that meets human needs?
Free markets and the declien of unions and good jobs
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