At 2 AM on Sunday morning I got a craving for a guilty pleasure – a McDonald’s Big Mac. As I was waiting for the 24 hour Drive Thru to serve up my arteriosclerosis-accelerating burger, CBC was playing news from Europe.
They were discussing the the political situation in Germany. It looks as though German Chancellor Gerard Schroder will soon fall from power – to a leader that supports President Bush and his overtures in Iraq, no less. The person conducting the interview was blown away by that. How could the Germans support a candidate that is pro-American? The analyst from German stated that it had very little to do with the candidate’s position on Iraq.
The main issue, according to this analyst, was that Germans are fed up with all the lies. They are looking for a political leader that will tell it to them straight. That will be honest about the current economic realities in Germany. Germany has built up one of the largest welfare states in Europe over the past 40 years and the current government continues to nurture it and put off what most think as inevitable – a full reset of the welfare mentality in Germany in favour of more personal responsibility. The German people are ready for this but the government doesn’t seem to be.
Less ‘entitlement’ and more ‘personal responsibility’. Sounds good to me.
But I digress. This blog is about something else.
It’s about ‘common sense’.
Namely, that eventually the public wakes up to reality whether or not the government wants them to or not.
In New Brunswick the reality is:
-Population decline since the late 1990s
-Out-migration of our best and brightest youth
-Almost no immigration
-Our key industries -forestry, fishing and mining – are in decline
-The education gap with the rest of Canada is widening
-Most importantly, we require at least $1.5 billion per year from Ontario and Alberta taxpayers just to be able to offer the current level of government services in the province.
No matter how much the government and the Times & Transcript talk about prosperity and ‘booms’, eventually this reality is going to sink in with the majority of New Brunswickers. Hopefully, they will then call for substantitive change.