Like father, like son, the old adage goes. It’s rarely been truer than in the case of former prime minister Pierre Elliott Trudeau and his son. Pierre was once asked for his views on democracy and communism, and stated that a one-party state would be the ideal government under certain conditions. That might sound familiar.
Added Pierre: “I wouldn’t be prepared to think I would be successful in arguing that (communism) for Canada at the present time. But such times might come, who knows?” Five decades later, here’s his son, Justin Trudeau: “You know, there’s a level of admiration I actually have for China because their basic dictatorship is allowing them to actually turn their economy around on a dime.”
Of course, the reason for that direct economic power is China’s command-and-control economy, wherein the government owns or controls the vast majority of businesses. For Trudeau the elder and Trudeau the younger, admiration of communism is seen in actions that diminish private-sector investment in favour of public spending, along with social policies that discourage or prohibit ways of thinking not aligned with their “progressive” beliefs.
During the 15 years that Pierre Trudeau was prime minister, federal spending rose from 30 to 53 per cent of GDP. Huge public spending overheated the economy, resulting in runaway inflation. By 1981, Canada’s prime lending rate had reached an incredible 22 per cent. The inability to meet skyrocketing interest payments caused widespread corporate and personal bankruptcies.
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