Dreams for Canada

It's what all great societies strive toward: glorious infrastructure! Here we talk about transport links, power stations and everything in between.
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Dreams for Canada

Post by sharoma »

Sometimes I day dream about how awesome Canada could actually be with policies based on long term goals rather than short term gains. My vision is of a high speed railway running the length of the country, with spurs to all major settlements. Very small towns or rural areas where I live could be served by a more economical light rail system which connects to the nearest spur or high speed station. The corridor of high density urban areas in the east is also a prime place to start a new high speed project. Canada is also desperate for new towns, since the housing crisis will now stretch into the next two to three decades. New settlements could be created along the routes. Affordable apartment buildings should be built en masse to a high quality and government approved design. The infrastructure should all be funded the way Canada funded its projects before the 1970s: with interest free cash printed directly by the Bank of Canada for the government and people's benefit. We already have inflation in Canada; inflation caused by too little supply. Channeling it into actual building to create sustainable long term demand is a good thing. Only the state can keep spending and building during recessions. It is both its duty and its purpose.

A more extreme measure (to most folks here, not me) would involve nationalisation of the entire housing stock. The first step to abolishing money is to make sure everyone is paid the same, or to implement a Universal Basic Income system. Once the actual meaning and value of money is gone, it can be abolished. Back to the housing crises: I live in a small town which is mostly empty outside holiday seasons. Many large, luxury houses sit vacant most of the year. It's a similar situation in the cities, where people cannot afford the luxury new apartments and condos, so many sit empty. Nationalisation of the housing stock involves taking an inventory of every livable dwelling in the country and then organizing it based on need. I would ban second homes - no one is entitled to more than one house whilst so many go homeless. In the nationalisation scheme, where you live now is, well, where you live. You can stay. Your mortgage and rent would disappear. Any repairs or maintenance would be handed over to the local agencies who are not motivated by profit. The homeless can be assigned to dwellings which are unoccupied or not occupied most of the year. If your family expands, you naturally are entitled to a larger home. The only people screaming at me that this is insane communist nonsense are those with the most to lose: the ultra wealthy with many homes, investment companies, landlords and rental companies profiting off the poor and working people. Most Canadians pay a lot more than one third of their income on housing.

It's all dreams of course. I want a fair and equitable Canada which can once again serve as an example to the world. You could work from home in a rural area, served by high speed internet with a spur to the local high speed rail station. As it is right now, if I want to go anywhere, I must own a vehicle. If I want to go to Vancouver, I must drive at least ten hours or take a ridiculously expensive flight. There used to be passenger rail, now there is none. The antiquated railway here carries very slow moving freight trains, and that is all. Imagine the opportunities possible! I could get on a light railway to the nearest city (125km to the south of here) and then be in Vancouver in two to three hours. I could put my feet up and watch the world go by, not at all missing the days when to take such a journey was dangerous and exhausting, not to mention highly inefficient in terms of fuel used. Cars and trucks running on tarmac are, after all, just really poor trains.

I said in an earlier post that I wish to see all the essentials of life removed from the market. This couldn't be done all at once. It would have to be done in stages. Many countries have already removed healthcare (or parts of it) from the market. Housing could be next, followed by transport, then food, communications, etc.
Robin Sharrock
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