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On Friday I spoke to David MacDonald, senior economist for the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives about his take on the recent data release by StatsCan which indicates growing inequality in Canada. The release also generated a firestorm of sorts in the mainstream media setting the data either as, in the words of the national Post’s Terrance Corcorran adding “…nothing to the ongoing ideological debate over inequality or any meaningful new analysis, [but] [just] … reinforce[d] StatsCan’s recent role as one of the country’s leading class warfarists”, or, according a recent Globe and Mail editorial, we should be thankful for the 1% for the taxes they did pay.
MacDonald emphasized that the statistics released show that in Canada’s three largest cities: Vancouver, Toronto, and Montreal the bottom 90% make less than they did 30 years ago, and that even in Calgary “where the action is” economic growth has had little effect on income after adjustments for inflation.
In Windsor there has been a modest gain for the lower 90% of a few hundred dollars over 30 years while the top 1% have done better. In short, the StatsCan figures are the “definitive data” on the trickle down theory where indeed a few drops have made it to the 90% while the richest have siphoned off the most:
Track segment played on air: “Set Me Free” :