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ISBN: 9781459406636

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Margaret Thatcher transformed British political life forever. So did Ronald Reagan in the United States. Now Canada has experienced a similar, dramatic shift to a new kind of politics, which author Donald Gustein terms Harperism. Among its key tenets:

A weakened labour movement–and preferably the disappearance of unions–will contribute to Canada’s economic prosperity

Cutting back government scientific research and data collection will improve public policy-making

Eliminating First Nations reserves by converting them to private property will improve conditions of life for aboriginal peoples

Inequality of incomes and wealth is a good thing–and Canada needs more of it

These and other essential elements of Harperism flow from neo-liberal economic theories propounded by the Austrian economist Friedrich von Hayek and his U.S. disciples. They inspired Thatcherism and Reaganism. Stephen Harper has taken this neo-liberalism much further in many key areas. As Donald Gutstein shows, Harper has successfully used a strategy of incremental change coupled with denial of the underlying neo-liberal analysis that explains these hard-to-understand measures.

The success of Harperism is no accident. Donald Gutstein documents the links between the politicians, think tanks, journalists, academics, and researchers who nurture and promote each other’s neo-liberal ideas. They do so using funds provided by ultra-rich U.S. donors, by Canadian billionaires like Peter Munk, and by many big corporations–all of whom stand to gain from the ideas and policies the Harperites develop and push.

This book casts new light on the last ten years of Canadian politics. It documents the challenges that Harperism–with or without Stephen Harper–will continue to offer to the many Canadians who do not share this pro-market world view.

Donald Gutstein

DONALD GUTSTEIN has written four books on the links between large corporations, politics, and the media. His previous book, Not A Conspiracy Theory, is a history of the Fraser Institute and other think tanks. Gutstein writes for The Tyee, Georgia Straight, and He is an adjunct professor in the School of Communication at Simon Fraser University and co-director of NewsWatch Canada, a media-monitoring project in the school. He lives in Vancouver.

Chapter Title Abstract Contributors Pages Year Price


Outlines Stephen Harper’s changes that were instituted, outlines a connection between neo-liberal think tanks and Harper’s election, comparisons to Reganism and Thatcherism 10 $1.00


Explores the history of economic freedom, how canadians have been convinced that it is a good thing, the policies Harper has put in place to make it happen 35 $3.50


focuses on Brian Lee Crowley, his neoliberal ideas, and the think tank he founded 39 $3.90


Looks at the Harper Government in terms of labour relations 34 $3.40


Harper’s dealings and policy regarding first nations and reserves. Looks at the First Nations Property Ownership Act. Analyzes how the harper government has painted the problems facing … 37 $3.70


Looks at the Harper Government’s environmental policy with particular focus paid to the idea of ethical oil 34 $3.40


looks at the ways the harper government has underminded scientific knowledge through the long form census, budgets, shuttering scientific activity, and his red tape reduction act 32 $3.20


looks at how the Harper Government has denied that there is income inequality through canada in their policies and neo-liberal mentality 36 $3.60


looks at how the Harper Government has tried to remake the canadian image from one focused on peacekeeping and environmental protection to one devoted to military might and economic progress. … 33 $3.30


Conclusions regarding the ideas presented in this book and how to move forward from Harperism 5 $0.50