Mrs Carney’s husband

That Canada’s loss will be Britain’s gain, when Mark Carney moves from the Bank of Canada to the Bank of England, would appear to be the unanimous judgement of journalists on both sides of the Atlantic. Therefore it is almost certainly wrong.

We have nothing against the man personally (yet), but have noticed that he is casually given credit for economic accomplishments he had nothing to do with. As Canada’s central bank boss, he did what all the other bank governors did in the face of the crisis that began in 2007. He printed money, & held the interest rate down when it was under no upward pressure. A policy which could have led to hyperinflation – pumping gas into the street to kick-start the economy – proved harmless because no one lit a match. Investment prospects are that deadly; & consumers are that overspent.

The supposed strength of Canada’s economy, & the modesty of her public debt, are comparative. We’re in first place in the OECD table because we’ve somehow managed to zero out, while everyone else is sinking. Some real credit is due to the former Chrétien government for wrestling with the national accounts, & to the Harper government to a lesser degree. We utterly despised Jean Chrétien, & despise Stephen Harper, so this is not giddy praise. Compared to other Western governments, Canada’s have played the old Scotch fiddle tightly. But this does not mean our national debt, the provincial debts piled on, the continuing deficits & unfunded liabilities are not monstrous; only that we’re at the back of the queue for the fiscal Day of Reckoning. And when that day comes, the whole queue will be processed quickly.

The world is full of batty people, & the proportion among those with wealth & power is probably no lower than on the streets of Parkdale. Take for instance Mr Carney’s illustrious wife, whose polite, high-society rants about inequality & global warming come in about par. In times like these, she is not even an embarrassment to her husband. From what we have seen of the tables of the rich, this is not even hypocrisy, for hypocrisy requires at least some self-knowledge.

If the rich wanted to give away their fortunes to the poor, they could do so this afternoon. They could instead, if they wished, keep their investments but dispose of the income, & move into noisome little flats in the dirty parts of town. They could reduce their carbon footprints almost to zero, & still keep tabs on their brokers.

Instead they keep every luxury & extravagance, & lecture us about how good they are, demanding that the government do something about inequality & global warming.

We frankly prefer this violent Marxist lunatic who seems to be the President of Uruguay. Jose Mujica lives in a shack on some vegetable patch overgrown with weeds, on a small fraction of his salary, giving the rest away & driving a rusted-out Volkswagen Beetle to work. But his reasoning is impeccable:

“This is a matter of freedom. If you don’t have many possessions then you don’t need to work all your life like a slave to sustain them, & therefore you have more time for yourself.”

As we hinted above, we don’t know Mr Carney, & Mrs Carney only through her blog. We are therefore in no position to confirm whether he is as batty as she is. Given his brilliant career success, he must at least know when to keep his mouth shut. But from our general experience, in private company, when the mouth finally opens, the most extraordinary propositions may be released.