Cardus: Stimulus Package Requires More Than Money

OTTAWA, January 27, 2009—Ray Pennings, Director of Research for Cardus, expressed concern that Canada's federal budget provides a short-term solution to a long-term problem, leaving the fundamental questions facing Canada's economy unanswered.

Said Mr. Pennings, "The government is responding to the public's exaggerated expectations of what federal spending can fix. This budget does not adequately address our over-reliance on credit, our demographic challenges, and the overall need to renew our social architecture."

Cardus' analysis, by Pennings and President Michael Van Pelt, reviewed the budget with three questions in mind:

  • Is the overall budget a reflection of short-term or long-term economic thinking?
  • Is there a broader view of infrastructure beyond physical infrastructure?
  • Is the budget fair and equitable for Canadians across our diverse landscape?

Cardus concludes that although the budget buys Canada time to deal with fundamental economic questions, the strategy is not without risk. "We are borrowing from the future to maintain the ways of the past," said Pennings. "The success of this budget will be determined by how well we use this time to develop sound, long-term strategies, including answers to fundamental questions about how we organize society, and what we expect from life."

Cardus is a North American public policy think tank, equipping change agents with best theories and practices of public life to renew North American social architecture. Cardus launched in October 2008 to expand on the work of its precursor, the Work Research Foundation. It has an annual operating budget of approximately $1 million and is a registered charity.


Media Contact:
Ray Pennings (403)479-4590

A copy of the proposal and background paper is available at