The Truth About Canada
Some Important, Some Astonishing, and Some Truly Appalling Things All Canadians Should Know About Our Co
By Mel Hurtig
(Emblem Editions, Paperback, 9780771041662, 408pp.)
Publication Date: February 3, 2009
Other Editions of This Title: Hardcover
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Renowned as a passionate Canadian, bestselling author Mel Hurtig has combed through world statistics to see how Canada really measures up — and the results are astonishing, and often shocking.
This book is about how Canada has changed, very much for the worse, in the last twenty years. As a result of these profound (often hidden) changes, we are no longer the people we think we are. To take one example, the Canadian media usually leaves us with the impression that Canadians are really heavily taxed. Yes, compared to the U.S.A., the usual point of comparison. No, compared to other countries with our standard of living, other OECD countries, for example; there we come in 23rd on the high-tax scale.
The shocks in this book build up, chapter by chapter. How do we rank in the world in voter turnout? Try 109th. Number of physicians per 100,000 population? Try 54th. Our rank in reducing pollution? 126th out of 146 countries.
Some of the statistics are internal, comparing Canada then and now. They back up two of the book’s most powerful themes: the failure of Canadian big business to turn record profits into ongoing investment in our country, and (no coincidence) the sellout of our assets at a rate that no other country would allow.
This statistics-based book ranges across all areas of our lives — including health, wages, productivity, culture, the media (“the most concentrated in the world”), and much else. Mel Hurtig’s message is that we can’t do anything to fix the direction we’re drifting in unless we recognize it — and recognize The Truth About Canada.
Mel Hurtig is the legendary Edmonton bookseller, publisher, and creator of The Canadian Encyclopedia who became a political activist, then an author in 1991 with his huge bestseller The Betrayal of Canada. He is also the author of Pay the Rent or Feed the Kids, The Vanishing Country, and Rushing to Armageddon. He is a member of the Order of Canada, and has received many honorary degrees and honours. He lives in Vancouver.