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October 28, 2008

Paul Martin on The Current

Paymentdue I don't know how many others managed to tune into Paul Martin's interview on The Current this morning. I found it to be both inspiring and disheartening, given where we find ourselves today.

Martin talked about the role he played in founding the Group of 20 (G-20) finance ministers and central bank governors and how, following some earlier world-wide economic crises, he saw the need for international cooperation on economic matters. He offered up a very wise analysis of the world's current economic woes: it's a crisis triggered by a lack of transparency and federal de-regulation of the U.S. banking industry. He stated that the crisis was predictable and preventable and noted that there is  a need for greater transparency in the banking industry world-wide and for governments to hold banks more, not less, accountable. (The crisis in the U.S. followed a period of federal de-regulation in the banking industry.)

De-regulation seems to lead to dire consequences wherever and whenever it occurs -- and yet the public is repeatedly sweet-talked into electing governments that seek to deregulate industry after industry. Maybe the magnitude of this disaster -- and the fact that it's hitting people in the pocketbooks -- will cause people to pay a little more attention. Or maybe not. After all, listeria-related deaths didn't prevent people from re-electing a government committed to more deregulation, now did it?

On an unrelated note, Martin also commented on the attacks on Ralph Goodale that were made during the 2006 election -- and how they impacted that election. Knowing what we know now, you have to wonder if the success of that attack strategy led to the subsequent Dion attack strategy. After all, if the attack strategy worked once, why not try it again -- but this time go for the jugular by launching the ads the moment the new Liberal leader tried to establish a relationship with the Canadian public?


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