Economic facts fail Harper’s boasting of economy

Stephen Harper and his Conservatives are running the most poorly performing economy the country has seen since the end of the Second World War according to a new report by Unifor, Canada’s largest private union.

Stephen Harper has been boasting publicly of how well his government has controlled the economy. Such ads on TV are a regular staple and just one example of Harper misleading the Canadian public during his stay in politics.

The Conservatives are pinning their re-election bets on selling Harper’s reputation as a strong fiscal manager, but the latest economic indicators show the Canadian economy contracted in the first quarter of 2015.

Nonetheless, the prime minister says Canadians have a “very simple choice” when they head to the polls on Oct. 19.

He said “instability in the world” is no reason to ditch an economic plan that he insists is working.

“Analysts are predicting good growth for this economy into the future as long as we stay on track,” he said.

“It is a time to stick to our plan, make wise investments, control our spending, lower taxes and make sure our fiscal situation is balanced and strong.” (quoted from CTV news at  )

Never one to let the facts get in the way of a good political line, Harper’s boasting bubble pops when punctured with truth about his economic governance.

Harper loses econony

The report examined 16 indicators of economic progress, including job creation, real GDP growth, export growth, household debt and real personal incomes.

“The Harper government ranked last or second last in 13 of the 16 indicators,” Stanford said.

He said when all the categories are added up to give a cumulative score, Harper grabbed an 8.05 out of nine. Nine is the worst possible score.

Brennan and Stanford included extensive lists of data used for their rankings, so skeptics can see the information for themselves.

Economist Mike Moffatt of Ontario’s Mowat Centre, an independent think tank, reviewed the report and said it holds up to scrutiny.

Moffatt said the figures in the report are accurate, but more context would help explain why the economy has performed poorly.

“They were kind of selective in what they chose to report,” Moffatt said, suggesting the authors could have analyzed more categories favourable towards the government, like household wealth. “That’s a mild issue with it, but overall a lot of the more obvious economic indicators have been rather poor over the last eight or nine years, which this report points out.”

Moffatt added the number crunching and raw data in the report was “fantastic.”

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By Ted

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