The concept of the “Great Reset” isn’t new but had always been dismissed as a conspiracy theory or an academic notion that would never actually be implemented.
In Canada, the notion moved beyond academic postulating and into potential legislative reality when Prime Minister Justin Trudeau spoke to the UN on pursuing the reset last September. A universal basic income (UBI) policy would be an integral facet of that scheme, and the Liberal government is laying the groundwork for it.
To encapsulate the Great Reset, it is a global plan to take advantage of the current crisis caused by the pandemic to completely rebuild our economic and governance models. To make changes piecemeal takes years of work and voters have to be consulted. If the economy has ground to a halt due to a world crisis such as a pandemic, governments can use the emergency in order to implement massive changes while the population is fearful and ready to embrace new visions.
This is distressing on two fronts.
For one, leaders and governments that want to pursue the Great Reset have an incentive to crash economies further. If a leader truly believes that the Great Reset will bring about change for the greater good, they will want the economy to reach rock bottom as soon as possible in order to begin rebuilding this new utopia.
Secondly, the vision for a post-reset world is a socialist one. Increased government presence in the economy along with a massive increase in the welfare state are fundamental facets in the Great Reset. Developed nations have been drifting into this state of being for decades, but the ideologues want to accelerate that process and the Great Reset gives them the means.
A UBI policy would hasten Canada’s trip to the economic bottom and would bring about massive growth in state dependency. It is a two-for-one policy as far as Great Reset proponents are concerned. That is precisely why Liberal MP Julie Dzerowicz has tabled Bill C-273, or the National Strategy for a Guaranteed Basic Income Act.
Private members’ bills rarely pass and can usually be dismissed. But when an MP from the governing party puts forth a private member’s bill, we must sit up and take notice. Governments use these kinds of bills to float notions and to promote future initiatives without looking like the party in power is actually behind the bill. The Trudeau government keeps a tight leash on its MPs, so you can rest assured that Dzerowicz’s bill would never have seen the light of day if the powers that be didn’t want it to.
UBI schemes have been toyed with by economists and politicians for years, but have failed without exception when put to the test. While a UBI plan is supposed to replace existing state plans such as welfare and employment insurance, governments don’t have the courage to eliminate those plans so the UBI just becomes another payout on top of many. UBI policies also work on the naive premise that people won’t become dependent on the payments and will seek employment as soon as possible. A two-year experiment in Finland that ended in December 2018 proved that wrong, as UBI recipients simply took the money and stayed at home.
With the Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB) program in response to the pandemic, Canada is already undergoing what is essentially a nationwide experiment in UBI. The full cost of CRB can’t even be measured yet since there hasn’t been a federal budget in nearly two years. We should wait and see the fiscal costs of this before even considering embracing a UBI policy.
Ready access to CRB funds is undeniably a contributing factor to Canada’s addiction crisis. People with addiction challenges need treatment, not cash. Easy access to unconditional funds can exacerbate problems for people who are fighting addiction and can’t make responsible spending choices. Overdose deaths across Canada skyrocketed in 2020. A UBI program would have the same effect.
To embrace a universal basic income at a time like this would be economic suicide. Ironically, that is exactly why the Trudeau government wants to implement it. We can’t enter the Great Reset without hitting rock bottom first, and a UBI program will hurtle us toward that hard landing.
It’s going to be a long, difficult climb for us all to get out of the pandemic recession. People will be tempted to fall for the siren-song of big government solutions, and UBI will be one of them. We need to stand up and push back against such initiatives while we still can. Bill C-273 needs to be stopped.