You may have heard it in the speech, but the government is now relying on a made up thing called "Modern Supply-Side Economics". Supply-Side Economics is called neoclassical economic and we refer to the policies around this as neoliberalism.
We have moved from Modern Monetary Theory (MMT) to "modern" Supply-Side Economic (MSE). There is nothing "modern" about supporting profits with taxes and that is all the current budget is really about.
From a classical economics/Marxist perspective, the budget is a disaster of liberal mysticism over economic materialism that will lead us nowhere in the fight against climate change, just transition, investment in mitigation, and support for workers and the economy.
Add to this the one thing that will drive production – the one area where the Liberal diverged completely from mysticism – is defence spending. Profit subsidy, yes, but also direct government-directed production and investment in state-controlled research and development.
One can take the analysis of the post-secondary sector and apply it across most of the budget. It is profit subsidy masquerading as investment. The government creates multiple (more than three) different organization to give-away cash to the private sector. All while tacitly admitting that this strategy to deal with climate change and economic transformation has not worked.
The budget also is absurdly very clear about the fact that Canada is an order of magnitude below the necessary investment in clean energy necessary to meet our international obligations. The answer to this gap from the liberal? The liberals will go fishing for magic private finance to save us with guaranteed profits as the bait.
- Greenhouse gas issue? No problem: $2.6B in tax cuts for oil and gas to implement mythical carbon capture and storage non-solutions.
- No green energy to get oil out of the ground? No problem: $120.6M for "modular" nuclear reactors.
- Pandemic drug supply issues? No problem: $1B to the Strategic Innovation Fund for Pharma companies.
- Drug production issues? No problem: $1.2B for big Pharma bio-manufacturing.
- Supply chain issues? No problem: $750M Global Innovation Clusters
- Security of research IP issues? No problem: $125M Research Support Fund
- Defence issues? No problem: Canadian Innovation and Investment Agency
- Innovation and marketization of products issues? No problem: $47.8M Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada
- Low emissions food supply issues? No problem: $100M crop varieties fund to agro-industry partnered university researchers.
The budget is a classic Liberal budget. Nothing shocking, but unfortunate if you care about the future.