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Great Recession or the Great Aggression?: Canadian Labour Weighs the Costs of Economic Integration in North America
Unformatted Document Text:  Great Recession or the Great Aggression?: Canadian Labour Weighs the Costs of Economic Integration in North America Paper prepared for presentation at the International Studies Association Meetings, Montreal, March 17, 2011 Teresa Healy ## email not listed ## (Draft ) Abstract Since October 2008, when the economic crisis hit with full force, Statistics Canada has been reporting alarming rates of unemployment. Indeed, the loss of good jobs has been significant since the Canadian manufacturing crisis began in 2002, but as the “Great Recession” gathered force, workers witnessed the unfolding of an utter catastrophe across the country. Now, the recession has been declared over, but unemployment remains high in Canada and workers and their unions continue to be disciplined by factory and mill closures, internal migration, international free trade and investment agreements, ongoing corporate tax cuts, an inadequate social safety net, increased income inequality, the re-emergence of debt and deficits, and state alliances with international capital bent on wresting deep concessions from labour. Despite all evidence to the contrary, labour is now being scapegoated in the wake of a crisis that it did not create, and neo- liberal solutions are being sought as a solution to a massive crisis caused by neo-liberal capitalism itself. These disciplines did not emerge as a result of the ‘Great Recession’ but ahead of it with the result that the ‘Great Repression’ continues. 1

Authors: Healy, Teresa.
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Great Recession or the Great Aggression?: Canadian Labour Weighs the 
Costs of Economic Integration in North America
Paper prepared for presentation at the International Studies Association 
Meetings, Montreal, March 17, 2011
Teresa Healy
## email not listed ##
(Draft )
Since October 2008, when the economic crisis hit with full force, 
Statistics Canada has been reporting alarming rates of unemployment. 
Indeed, the loss of good jobs has been significant since the Canadian 
manufacturing crisis began in 2002, but as the “Great Recession” 
gathered force, workers witnessed the unfolding of an utter catastrophe 
across the country. Now, the recession has been declared over, but 
unemployment remains high in Canada and workers and their unions 
continue to be disciplined by factory and mill closures, internal 
migration, international free trade and investment agreements, 
ongoing corporate tax cuts, an inadequate social safety net, increased 
income inequality, the re-emergence of debt and deficits, and state 
alliances with international capital bent on wresting deep concessions 
from labour.  Despite all evidence to the contrary, labour is now being 
scapegoated in the wake of a crisis that it did not create, and neo-
liberal solutions are being sought as a solution to a massive crisis 
caused by neo-liberal capitalism itself. These disciplines did not emerge 
as a result of the  ‘Great Recession’ but ahead of it with the result that 
the ‘Great Repression’ continues.

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