Have you ever walked through one of those pubs with the dart boards and worried some drunk will miss and hit you in the arse with a stray dart?
That’s how I feel this morning. First, I read the Danny Williams is going to give $1,000 bucks for everyone that has a baby in an effort to stimulate birth rates. Second, the head of the Post Secondary Commission in New Brunswick says the “north is dead” without the polytechnic institute model in northern New Brunswick.
Newfoundland & Labrador has the worst out-migration rate of all provinces in Canada. Having more babies will just provide more feet to beat the path out of the province.
Northern New Brunswick’s economy is in decline – rapid decline – and having a shiny new polytechnic may provide some value – it comes in far behind – in my opinion – real economic development.
I have blogged a gazillion times on this but I will reiterate:
What would a strong and successful Northern N.B. economy look like in 20 years and what, if anything, can government and community leaders do to help catalyze this growth?
I think we can safely agree that propping up dying industries, enhancing the EI program and holding on for dear life hasn’t worked.
I think I also mentioned one time that I did a significant economic study of a rural area in Atlantic Canada (not Northern NB) and found that as the economy declined, government started slowly pulling out – downsizing the hospital, closing schools, shutting down road maintenance sheds, etc. – becoming part of the problem.
Stop diddling around and think this through, folks.
But there is a lesson in here methinks:
Ask an educator what the problem is and he/she will say education (it’s what he/she knows)
Ask a small business owner what the problem is and he/she will say lack of support for small business (it’s what he/she knows)
Ask a health care worker what the problem is and he/she will say lack of health care (it’s what he/she knows)
Ask a social worker what the problem is and he/she will say lack of social support (it’s what he/she knows)
Ask a politician what the problem is and he/she will stick their finger in the wind to see which way it is blowing (it’s what he/she knows)
Am I wrong here?