Conservative government puts banks ahead of people
In 2009, the federal government announced a $200-billion “Extraordinary Financing Framework” in response to the needs of financial institutions.
Subsequently, the government purchased from the banks asset-backed commercial paper, whose sale had frozen in the private market and whose value could not be determined. Much detail was never disclosed to the public so we will never know the full story of the bank bailout. But the massive amounts involved and the continued increase in ceilings of particular programs made it clear that the Canadian government would do whatever necessary to protect Canadian banks.
Now in 2013, the federal government has refused to consider enhancements to the Canada Pension Plan, despite knowing that two-thirds of working Canadians—12 million people—don’t have workplace pensions. In contrast to the immediate and robust action of 2009, Finance Minister Jim Flaherty suggested CPP reforms might be taken up again “two years from now, three years, five years, six years”.
Industry Minister James Moore may have retracted his insensitive remarks about the government having no responsibility for hungry children, but it is clear that Conservative priorities include the health and welfare of banks, but not the health and welfare of average Canadian families.
> Larry Kazdan / Vancouver