Wednesday, April 04, 2012

Canada Beats US?

That's what the WSJ says!! Not too many years ago, Americans could get away with cracking jokes about spendthrift Canada, its weak dollar and the long wait for MRIs. These days, the joke is on Americans, as Canada's government has cleaned up its fiscal mess and focused on private economic growth. The governing Conservative Party took another step forward last week with a pledge to balance the budget by 2015 without raising taxes. That's a year later than Prime Minister Stephen Harper pledged on the stump in 2011, but it sure beats America's four consecutive years of deficits of $1.3 trillion. Canada's federal debt as a share of GDP is forecast to fall to 28.5% in 2016–17 from 33.8%. Add in state debt and that number is closer to 66%, but the trend is in the right direction, while America's is heading toward 70% and rising. Canada's progress isn't a political accident. Our northern neighbor has been liberalizing since the mid-1990s, under politicians of the right and left, and through better policies it dodged the government-supercharged housing boom and bust that sent the U.S. into recession.

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