Published in 2013 during a Harper majority government and prior to the Alberta recession, this analysis seems dated and stale. While the predicted seismic change in voter attitudes might indeed occur in the long term, there is limited evidence today with a Liberal majority and Liberal identity politics. This book needs to be updated and rethought.
Reading this some 5 years after it was authored, I have to think Ibbotson and Bricker wish just a bit that they had delayed the final edit another year or so. From a pretty detailed and astute analysis of the migration patterns within Canada and how overall demographic studies have see "the big shift", they make a huge leap into detailing on somewhat less grounded research how this has led to a political turn against the invented concepts of "the Laurentian consensus" and the "Ottawa River Corridor". This is all in aid of alerting us to a more or less permanent state of social conservatism albeit they throw in enough conditions and possibilities for some other outcomes to avoid criticism that their conclusions are way off base - in hindsight. Bricker- stick to demographic analysis and interpretation, Obbotson - stick to your political punditry, and for heaven's sake, do not try to blend those stances if the result is what I read here.
This was an interesting read - to see how the "talking heads" of the Ottawa Bubble tried to predict the future political landscape of the country and got a lot of it wrong. For instance they had dismissed the resurgence of the Liberal Party in favor of continued support for the NDP and the possibility of a merger of the two parties. Alberta hadn't yet booted the long times governing PCs out in favor of the NDP - there was no indication that Albertan's were tired of the PCs and would toss them out with a NDP landslide victory. The poles had it all wrong!
With the Liberals in power the west is now back to being the hinterland. By no means did I ever support the CPC under Steven Harper but I do give him credit for shifting the countries focus to the west.
A book that every "AWARE" Canadian should read. SEE posted video.
Opinionated and provocative (dare I say, smartalecy) as usual, Ibbitson proposes that Canada's political center of gravity is moving from Atlantic to Pacific and that, for the most part, our political views are becoming more conservative. Bricker provides the numbers. It's well worth reading, as long as you don't swallow the thesis whole but instead think about how the changes he describes will affect you.
An interesting look at the inevitable shift in power and wealth from Ontario and Quebec to the WestS ( as the authors call it ). This is a very timely piece by the authors, part of the so called Laurentian Consensus that has ruled Canada for most of it's life. It's good to see that others can see the writing on the wall.Definitely recommended for anyone who follows Canadian politics.
It's getting a higher score than it deserves because I'm a political junkie that loves reading about topics like the one covered in this book. The big mistake in the book so far was a mistake I made as well (talking about the BC NDP revival under Adrian Dix).
Back to the book, I sure hope the message is wrong but I think the authors have the facts/perspectives to back them up. I make not like the message but unless we learn the lessons, it may well be a long time until "THE NEXT BIG SHIFT".......
Timely, insightful commentary on the shift in Cdn politics since 2011.
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