Je me demande si Stéphan Harper avait chargé des stagiaires ou des bénévolats à lire les carnets. Harper a proposé qu'il abaissera la TPS à 5% si son partie gagnerait les élection. Comme mes lecteurs connaissent, j'ai toujours prôné en faveur d'un abaissement de la TPS.
Cependant Jay Bryant de la Gazette avait écrit un article dans lequel il oppose cet abaissement puisqu'il n'encourage que la consommation et n'améliore pas ni la productivité ni les investissement dans la main-d'oeuvre. Et que, hélas, Martin a raison a ce point-là. Peut-être mais je ne vois pas comment abaisser la TPS et réduire la fardeau fiscale se contredisent.
Au contraire, en abaissant la TPS, le consommateurs pourront dépenser plus de biens et service ce qu'incitera les manufacturier à investir davantage pour satisfaire cette demande croissante. En tout cas, il sera intéressant d'y voir comment évoulera ce point pendant les élections.
Over at the Anglosphere blog there's an ongoing discussion about the cultural-political roots for Anglophone exceptioanlism. As a frequent commentator, I often muse about the hedgehog and the fox- a metaphor between countries that are more reluctant towards change (hedgehog) and those that actively embrace it (fox).
It was a post by James on the British aeronautics industry and Britian's indifferent success with industrial planning in comparison to its European counterparts, that provided me with the long sought after illustration of the fox and the hedgehog collaborating together. This post won't be exhaustive nor an academic treatise but rather a brief overview to demonstrate that such collaborations are possible.
It's often forgotten that in the early years of the aeronautics industry (1917-1960) Britian was pioneer. Many people are familiar with the Spitfire plane; model builders and airplane buffs also know that British aeronautical engines like the Merlin were first class. In fact, Frank Whipple, independently of the German engineers during World War, invented the modern jet engine.
However, in the postwar period, the British aeronautical industry struggled and despite efforts by successive governments to implement an industrial policy. By the early 70s, the British aeronautical industry had pretty much ceased to exist. However, British expertise wasn't lost, it merely emigrated to Quebec.
During the 70s, the Quebec government studied various industries that would be value added and would disengage the province's dependency on extraction and transformation of natural resources such as iron and asbestos. One of the more promising industries was aeronautics. Consequently, the Quebec government implemented an industrial strategy which successive governments- whether the separatist Parti Québécois or the federal provincial Liberal party- continued laying the foundations.
Industrial policy is something that hedgehogs excel in because one of its tendencies is to know one big thing and to marshal the necessary resources as well as intellectual focus to achieve its aims. By chance as, Quebec was establishing its aeronautics industry, the British counterpart was in its death throes. There were few career prospects and the American aeronautical market was closed to foreigners at that time; so, many British engineers and designers came to Quebec.
The Quebec government gave subsidies to various aeronautical manufacturers (Bell Helicopters, Bombardier as well as to manufacturers of parts such as Pratt & Whitney) as well as encouraging universities to offer aeronautical specializations. However, most importantly the Quebec government established the foundations, it didn't impose itself but differed to the actors' best judgement as to what they would manufacture combined with customer demands as well as technological evolution for the rest.
The result have been twofold. First, Quebec has developped a world class aeronautical industry. While the industry doesn't manufacture every type of plane, its regional jets and helicopters are well regarded and the parts for air vehicles have a ready market throughout the world. Second, the British engineers and designers were able to hone their skills and talents, to build and innovate and to pass on their knowledge to future generations. Further, given the multiplier effect of the Anglosphere as a network, their ideas, innovations and products spread throughout the Anglophone community. This reinforced the virtuous circle of innovation and product development. Presently, the Quebec aeronautical industry isn't doing well. There are international political economic factors but there are also domestic elements too. First, there has developed a clientalistic relationship between the state and the aeronautical industry that makes it hard for the state to disengage when its presence is no longer needed. Second, governments are never nimble enough to adapt to change in industries where evolution is fast paced Both factors don't invalidate industrial policy but do point to a dilemma of timing for the state to get out and for and industry to develop on its own.
Nevertheless, the Quebec aeronautical industry illustrates how the hedgehog and the fox can collaborate and bring out the best in each other. Undoubtedly, there are other economic sectors where similar collaboration between different hedgehogs and the Anglospheric foxwill be fruitful.