Saturday, March 3, 2018

The Neoliberal Creep - An Update

I'm not sure what I find more offensive. Is it the fact that Bill Morneau, despite all that he has said about his limited vision regarding pharmacare, is apparently lying when he now says he is open to all ideas regarding a national drug-coverage program? Or is it that he holds the Canadian people in such contempt that he thinks we are either too stupid or too inattentive to see through his dissembling?
Finance Minister Bill Morneau now says he’s “agnostic” on proposals for a pharmacare plan after criticism that he was trying to dial back ambitions for a new program to ensure Canadians get the prescription drugs they need.

Morneau said Friday that he’s not seeking to prejudge the outcome of a newly created advisory council that will be looking at the idea or dampen the scope of their recommendations.

“What’s really clear to us is we need to get expert advice on how to do this best,” Morneau said during a visit to Montreal to discuss the budget measures.
What might account for his faux 'come to Jesus' reversal? Could it be that he has outraged influential groups?
... the Canadian Federation of Nurses, Canadian Doctors for Medicare and the Canadian Labour Congress [have written] an open letter to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau demanding Morneau be removed from the file.

They said Morneau has already decided it will not be a universal “plan” that covers all workers — to the detriment of Canadians, and the benefit of insurance and pharmaceutical companies, and, they suggested, Morneau Shepell.

They said it contradicts “overwhelming evidence” on the need for a universal program and undermines the work of Hoskins’ council before it begins.

“It is our hope that insurance industry and pharmaceutical industry interests will not play a role in the implementation of universal public pharmacare,” the letter to Trudeau stated.
Some will say we should not prejudge the process, and that we must give Morneau and his team a chance to get things right. To take such a position, in my view, would be to harbor a political naivete that I am incapable of.

More realistic, to me, is to see the truth of this entire charade, the truth made known when Mr. Morneau, in a moment of carelessness, let his mask slip, revealing what lies beneath - a living, breathing, neoliberal creep.


  1. I believe Morneau means well ... from his perspective. However, he's not a politician. As for J Trudeau, I suspect the [lobbying] pressures on him are exponentially greater than his dad's days.

    And, the alternatives are ... ?

    1. Morneau may mean well, UU4077, but I fear he means well mainly to those he understands best - his own kind, not the rest of us.

  2. I lost a lot of faith in this government when Morneau told Canadians they would have to get used to a future of "job churn." He was ushering a whole generation into a dystopian precariat without any sign that the Trudeau government had explored ways to possibly avert that outcome. We've discussed some of the options on these blogs - reform of corporate law, new standards of corporate citizenship and such - the very alignment of capital versus labour espoused by Teddy Roosevelt in that New Nationalism speech. It was such a demoralizing capitulation made that much worse by the advantaged status of certain members of Trudeau's front benches, especially Morneau. It was a real "let them eat cake" performance.

    1. I remember that declaration well, Mound, and I also remember how disgusted I was that a finance minister would be so disdainful as to capitulate to the status quo so readily. Clearly, Morneau and Team Trudeau do not feel the precariat's pain. All they can do is mouth platitudes about the middle class and those who 'are working to join the middle class.' Talk about your bromides, eh?

  3. Morneau has clearly not spent much time talking to ordinary working Canadians, Lorne.

    1. He appears to be both out of touch and out of his depth, Owen.

  4. It's all part of the Grand Plan of Obfuscation.

    Put in a haphazard system of Pharmacare, so that no citizen knows what is covered and by whom. Allow the private sector like Morneau Sheppell to set up systems to track every citizen to make sure they're covered by the eclectic mix of public and private schemes for pills, because it's so complicated, and thus skim off management fees for their "services".

    Big Pharma rejoices. Not having a national scheme means nobody is going to bargain for cheap pill prices on a national scale. So drug prices stay high, and the financial corporatists skim off the cream for services rendered tracking all the mush with ZERO value-added for anyone but themselves. All the public has to do is pay over the odds for all the shenanigans, while the politicians issue glib statements as to how they've helped everyone. It'll all cost more overall than what we have now, you can be sure.

    Then, at Bay Street banquets, the corporatists will toast each other as to how well they sold the citizenry that piece of goods. The talking will of course be in business code and jargon, the obfuscation of our age. Financial mags will feature glowing articles on how some "genius" spotted a service "missing" from the "market", and worked out a scheme to profit from it. All hail a new "business" Titan! And if you believe all that guff, you'll believe the BS from corporate media on war reporting too.

    These business people strike me as the lowest of human life forms, sucking and siphoning money into their pockets from the masses, while maintaining what they have helped society out, but in reality being parasites on the body politic. There is no shame left for those people. They believe their own lies, and act all patrician like Morneau, a man so apparently ill-informed and dim-witted, he'd never heard of business divestiture for holding public office, or if he had, regarded himself as so honest, ethics policies simply didn't apply to him.

    Does anyone trust Bell and their ripoff cell phone and cable/internet plans? How about the banks? - Nah, they don't try and flog useless services to little old ladies over the phone, do they? Upstanding corporate citizens, the lot of 'em. The execs claim the moral high ground - "That's not our company policy!" Meanwhile, they incentivize middle management with bonuses to get more and more business, and leave that rapacious class to work out the details on the QT, while issuing highly moral company "policy", and tut-tutting their lowest-ranked employees' behaviour. Then doing bugger all to change things. It's all utter and complete bollocks from beginning to end.

    Is anyone honest these days? I find precious little evidence of it. Everyone is trying to rip off everyone else just to make a living. It didn't use to be so obviously bent. But big business with the federal government in their pockets seem intent on ruining the ethics of the average citizen by lying, innuendo and complex ripoff schemes like National Pharma, and allowing it to be just obvious enough that we all turn into scheming thieves ourselves because it's the norm. You can't trust anyone these days - we're all stealthily trained to be greedy. Everyone is out for their own advantage.

    A population ruined like this has no empathy, couldn't care less about anyone else, and if you expect them to really care about the environment, well good luck. Thus the brain dead cheer lower "taxes" as if it were some sort of universal truism, and society gradually turns into sh*t, with no hope of altruism whatsoever.


    1. Thanks for your commentary here, BM. I am taking the liberty of featuring it as today's post.