Former Quebec premier Robert Bourassa invented the concept of “profitable federalism” (that’s the English translation of “fédéralisme rentable”) in the 1970s to convince fellow Quebecers that it would be best for their province to remain in Canada. As anyone can imagine, the concept of “profitable federalism” meant that Quebec would reap significant financial benefits if it did not separate from the rest of the country.
Bourassa was a Liberal premier. His main competition was the Parti Québécois under René Lévesque which advocated a form of independence for Quebec. Of course, Lévesque and his ideas were very popular, so Bourassa needed an alternative that would also be appealing to Quebecers. What could be more convincing than cold, hard cash? A sovereign Quebec sure looked good to them, but Canada had something to offer even better than that. Lots of money!
The choice was clear: would Quebecers want independence or money? The answer was also clear: they wanted Canada’s money. In other words, Canada would bribe Quebec not to separate.
Conveniently for Ottawa, by the 1970s Western Canada’s fossil fuel industry was becoming increasingly prosperous, providing jobs and economic development for the West. Thus, the federal government had an incredible source of new revenue to exploit.
Pierre Trudeau and his gang began to essentially loot the West and give the booty to Quebec in the name of “national unity.” This scam has been popular in the East ever since. And now these same people want to kill the fossil fuel industry that generates the West’s jobs and prosperity!
It’s time to make Canada “profitable,” or at least beneficial, for the West. Canada must remove all barriers to pipelines and fossil fuel development so that the West can survive and thrive economically. It also needs substantial constitutional changes—such as a Triple “E” Senate—so that the West can receive equitable treatment from federal institutions. The looting of the West to pay off Quebec must come to an end!
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