Socialist NDP federal leader Tom Mulclair insists that statistics on manufacturing job losses are irrefutable and that everyone (not me) agrees. More than half of these job losses are the direct result of the artificially high Canadian dollar. His statement is not only an exaggerated distortion — but an absolute crock of you know what, socialist lies.
The actual fluctuations of our dollar has very little to do with job losses in manufacturing. Between 1971 and 1976, our dollar ranged from $1.00 to $1.06, five years over par with absolutely no signs of manufacturing job losses. The dollar started slipping in 1977, all the way down to 70 cents in 1985. If you believe in Mulclair’s philosophy, with our dollar in the tank, our manufacturing industry should have grown dramatically, creating many new jobs. Not from my experience, as I was closely involved in Canadian manufacturing.
Our dollar never went beyond 90 cents until 2005. Year 1998 the dollar shrunk to 65-66 cents, year 2007 our dollar went way up to $1.07-$1.08, then in 2008, “Wham” down to 80 cents. So what really causes job losses? Millions of knowledgeable citizens in Canada and the U.S.A know the answer.
Thousands of manufacturers have moved their production to other countries, of which a large percentage transferred to China. This massive movement to offshore countries has been unbelievably destructive to the economies of Canada and the U.S.A., which led to thousands and thousands of lost factory jobs.
Hopefully this trend will be reversed. Recently some large corporations, two of which are General Electric and Union Tractor, are bringing some of their manufacturing back to America, because of inferior quality, resulting in an increasing number of consumer complaints. The benefits of more manufacturing returning to North America will obviously create many new jobs.
By the way, if a survey was taken asking Canadians if they would prefer to have our dollar continue on par with the U.S. dollar, I would expect a healthy majority would support a strong Canadian dollar. Obviously, the alternative of a weak dollar would automatically increase prices on almost everything we purchase from America. Many Canadians wouldn’t like that.