Wednesday, January 2, 2008


Remember Jack Layton, the “Green” city councilor from Toronto? The one who favours windmills and solar panels and retrofits and meeting Kyoto goals and all those good things? The man who leads the party with the “Green Agenda”? Well then you know his wife, Olivia Chow.

After Ottawa had increased its annual immigration target to the highest level in 25 years, and hopes to accept 265,000 immigrants this year, Chow, also an NDP MP, says the target should even be higher. That makes sense. The NDP is on record calling for an immigration rate of 1% of the current population “plus”. Currently that would be 330,000!

Revealing both her economic and environmental IQ she is quoted as parroting, in “Karas and Associates”, the same clichés as the traditional parties use:

“We need more immigrants because of our aging population. We need families and young people for productivity and economic growth.”

Ms. Chow would do well to consult left-wing economist Phil Mullin and his book “The Imaginary Time Bomb”. Immigration will not relieve the aging of our population whom we can support with very modest economic growth of 1%. And the productivity of the older experienced workforce is quite OK thank you very much. The CD Howe Institute will corroborate Mullan’s findings. Immigration would have increase 28 times its present level to maintain the present age structure. Clearly environmentally unsustainable.

Ms. Chow, and her consort, Mr. Layton, are captive of a national myth. That Canada is a vast country with lots of room for lots of people. A huge treasure trove of resources waiting to be opened up without ecological consequence if only there were the human resources available to do so. Therefore our immigration and refugee policy must, to use an NDP phrase, be “welcoming”.

Australia also shares that same myth. But with a difference. Their environmental superstars---Tim Flannery and Ian Lowe---and some politicians have exposed that myth for what it is, a dangerous suicidal fallacy which threatens to bring about a massive die-off of much of the population.

One of these politicians is a social democrat like Olivia Chow and Jack Layton. His name is Bob Carr, recent Labor premier of Australia’s largest state of New South Wales. This is what Carr has to say about the nature of economic growth, population and limits:

“Let’s throw away for all time the notion that Australia is an empty space, just waiting to be filled up. Our rivers, our soils, our vegetation won’t allow that to happen without an enormous cost to us and those who come after us.

We can depend on economic growth that comes in an easy fashion driven by population growth…On the other hand, we can sustain jobs and economic security by using our brains, by being a smart economy, by adding value to the products we produce here—the food and the fibre and the mineral products we produce here. By elaborating transforming manufacturing—we’re beginning to prove as a people that we’re good at that. By promoting our health innovations to the world, by promoting excellence in education to the world, by selling these services. That’s a smart Australia. Giving security to its people by thinking intelligently. It’s not a lazy Australia, that depends on job growth simply by driving up population numbers and depending on the growth you get by building houses and shopping malls.”

Carr went on to say that not to choose to have a population policy was in fact choosing not to have a population policy. In other words, we are then making a decision to continue with the present directionless policy “heading for limitless growth”.

Carr, and fellow retired Labor parliamentarian Barry Cohen is among several Australian politicians who know that unlimited growth in a finite country is impossible. They know that population growth thwarts GHG emission reductions, threatens biodiversity and farmland. Pity that their Canadian counterparts do not share this realization.

Tim Murray.

No comments: