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Cdn Annual Review 1978

Cdn Annual Review 1978

R.B. BYERS
JOHN SAYWELL
Copyright Date: 1980
Pages: 392
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/10.3138/j.ctt2ttk7n
  • Cite this Item
  • Book Info
    Cdn Annual Review 1978
    Book Description:

    The book offers both a concise, convenient record of the year's events and a responsible appraisal of these important developments.

    eISBN: 978-1-4426-7192-8
    Subjects: Political Science
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Table of Contents

Export Selected Citations
  1. Front Matter (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents (pp. v-viii)
  3. Contributors (pp. ix-x)
  4. Canadian Calendar (pp. xi-xvi)
  5. Parliament and Politics
    • [Introduction] (pp. 3-4)
      TOM TRAVES and JOHN SAYWELL

      The tests were great but the results meagre indeed. Longstanding problems such as the structure and performance of the economy, the operation of the federal system, the financing and implementation of desperately needed social programmes, and the balance between state power and individual liberty severely tested the limits of traditional policy approaches. But with its political mandate drawing to a close the Trudeau government appeared to lack the vision, the will, and the talent to draw up new programmes or consider alternative approaches. At the same time Canadians were far from impressed or heartened by the government’s opponents. The ndp...

    • Parliament (pp. 4-27)

      The legislative accomplishments of the Thirtieth Parliament, which sat for two sessions (from January 24 to June 30 and from October 10 to December 22) were minimal. Everyone but the prime minister, it seemed, expected an election, and politicking took precedence over administration. Nevertheless the country’s problems did not disappear just because the government did little to alter them. The economy continued to ail, and while the economic doctors blustered a great deal the patient grew sicker. Less pressing politically, but perhaps more important in the long run, Parliament also grappled with numerous complex issues involved in the tension between...

    • Politics (pp. 27-44)

      This was the year that wasn’t. There was no federal election, a fact that confounded all the pundits and not a few Liberals. There was no Conservative breakthrough in Quebec. There was no referendum on sovereigntyassociation in Quebec, and English-Canadians became blasé about the national unity question. There was no improvement in the economy and no indication that the government clearly had a grip on economic problems. For their part, the Conservatives simply promised to do less of everything better. Finally, most Canadians appeared to believe that there was little hope. Pierre Trudeau seemed finished, and Joe Clark had not...

    • The Trudeau Constitution (pp. 44-69)

      Although the prime minister had assured the sceptics in the fall of 1977 that he was willing to consider ‘the most profound and fundamental changes in any and all aspects of our federal system from A to Z,’ there was little public interest in, or press speculation about, possible federal proposals. While Mr Trudeau discussed his ideas about procedure, if not substance, with the provincial premiers individually late in 1977, the national unity group under Paul Tellier (presumably in close collaboration with Donald Thorson, the prime minister’s special adviser on the constitution, and Marc Lalonde) was feverishly writing the draft...

    • Working With the Old (pp. 69-80)

      There was a danger, the prime minister had warned late in 1977, that the promised meeting of the first ministers on the economy could give rise to ‘excessive expectations which, if they were not met, could undermine the very confidence it is essential for us to build.’ Mr Trudeau’s fears were groundless, for most Canadians had come to expect little from federalprovincial conferences on the economy. However, the 1978 round was the most ambitious ever, and if the concrete results were meagre the process itself was important.

      The way to the February 13-15 conference was paved by sectoral meetings at...

    • Waiting For the Referendum (pp. 80-99)

      With the possible exception of anglophone Quebeckers, the country waited patiently for the referendum on sovereignty-association generally expected in 1979. The aftermath of the November 15, 1976, shock had worn off, and very few anglophone Canadians continued to participate in the debate about Canada’s future. There was, unquestionably, the realization that the issue would in its initial stages be settled by the Québécois, that in a civil war intervention is as unwise as it is undesired. As author Victor Lévy Beaulieu observed, ‘In the great debate now taking place, English Canada is not only absent, it is set aside. It’s...

    • B and B (pp. 99-104)

      Asked at his April 6 press conference to name his greatest achievement, the prime minister replied that one of the most important was ‘linguistic equality and the translation of that not only in the laws but in the practice of the French-speaking Quebec presence in the federal system at all levels of the public service and order-in-council appointments. I think that was a very important accomplishment, one which was only a dream at the outset, something vague in the aspirations put forth by the B and B Commission.’ No one could question Mr Trudeau’s view of his own achievements, but...

  6. The Provinces
    • Ontario (pp. 107-136)
      PETER OLIVER

      Rapid cabinet changes, political consolidation, continued fiscal restraint, and an increasing emphasis on ‘deregulation’ marked the second year in office of Ontario’s second consecutive minority government. In January a major cabinet shuffle was touched off by the resignation of Energy Minister James Taylor, who had been the subject of frequent opposition attacks. In the new lineup announced January 21, Mr Taylor was replaced by Reuben Baetz, and also joining the cabinet were Lome Maeck as minister of revenue and Douglas Wiseman as minister without portfolio. Dropped were Margaret Scrivener of revenue as well as the provincial secretary for justice and...

    • Québec (pp. 136-164)
      RENÉ DUROCHER

      Encore une fois, l’activite politique aura occupé une place dominante au Québec au cours de l’annee 1978. Le gouvernement péquiste a continué à mettre en oeuvre sa stratégic de « bon » gouvernement tout en essayant de clarifier son option constitutionelle et en se préparant à l’échéance du référendum.

      Le gouvernement fédéral surveille de près le gouvernement Lévesque et cherche par divers moyens à démontrer le caractère néfaste du projet de souveraineté-association. De manière plus positive il essaie de poser des gestes de nature à convaincre les Québécois des bienfaits – surtout économiques – du fédéralisme canadien et il accepte...

    • Nova Scotia (pp. 164-171)
      DUNCAN FRASER

      The year in Nova Scotia saw a change in government, yet another provincial rescue attempt of a major private industry, a growing concern with energy costs and energy supply, a rising provincial budget, and some modest economic development.

      When the year began Nova Scotia’s unemployment rate had declined to the lowest in the Atlantic provinces, though it was nonetheless at 10.2 per cent. On January 17 the Conference Board in Canada forecast that real growth in Nova Scotia would increase from 2.3 to 4.2 per cent but unemployment would remain at around 10.5 per cent. In fact the jobless rate...

    • New Brunswick (pp. 171-182)
      RICHARD WILBUR

      With their economic fate long controlled by outside forces, New Brunswickers had constant reminders throughout 1978 that at least the political game was still their own. As always, it was a game fiercely fought and filled with resignations, accusations, scandals, inquiries, and elections. Very much in control after eight years in office, Tory Premier Richard Hatfield showed a mastery of the political scene that reminded oldtimers of the ease with which his late father, H.H. Hatfield MP, had run the Conservative stronghold along the upper Saint John river. Before issuing his long-awaited election call in early autumn, Premier Hatfield’s frequent...

    • Manitoba (pp. 182-190)
      GEOFFREY LAMBERT

      The first full year of Conservative government in Manitoba was dominated by ‘restraint.’ The Lyon administration, fully in accordance with its election promises, made very small increases in public expenditures, reduced the size of the civil service, and emphasized smaller government. Not surprisingly, the groups most affected by restraint protested volubly and received the support of the legislative opposition. Throughout the year the time-honoured debate continued between the advocates of free enterprise and the proponents of governmental intervention as the best means of promoting economic prosperity.

      The session commenced on March 16 and lasted until July 21. In the course...

    • British Columbia (pp. 190-205)
      ALAN F.J. ARTIBISE

      The government of Social Credit Premier W.R. Bennett was in political trouble all year. In November 1977 a poll had showed that Social Credit had fallen from its 49 per cent election victory to 30 per cent support and trailed the NDP by a few points. Polls taken in November and December of 1978 were equally discouraging for the government. With these indicators, Premier Bennett refused to call an election in 1978. The Social Credit leader’s problems were numerous and included high taxes and unemployment, a resurgent NDP, and a revitalized Progressive Conservative party. For the first time since 1975...

    • Prince Edward Island (pp. 205-212)
      FRANK MACKINNON

      Public affairs in Prince Edward Island in 1978 were dominated by a provincial election, a change in leadership, and an unusual political assault on the civil service.

      The Legislature opened on March 2 amid speculation on a possible dissolution, and the session’s business reflected the election strategy of the twenty-four Liberals and eight Progressive Conservatives. The long throne speech presented a glowing review of the government’s activities and intentions that Opposition Leader Angus MacLean called a ‘deathbed repentance.’ The speech promised no new taxes, the creation of two thousand new jobs in small industry, formation of a new energy corporation,...

    • Saskatchewan (pp. 212-223)
      J.R. MILLER

      Until Premier Allan Blakeney called an early general election in the autumn, it appeared that Saskatchewan’s news for 1978 would be dominated by labour problems and resource development. An agricultural industry that overcame early setbacks and a resource sector that seemed on the verge of great riches dominated economic news, while the political scene was noteworthy for the continued strength of the New Democrats and the disintegration of the Liberals. The province ended 1978 in a buoyant mood so far as the economy was concerned, after manifesting a penchant for continuity in politics.

      Agriculture appeared to be the uncertain area...

    • Alberta (pp. 223-232)
      DAVID ELTON

      The unqualified success of the Commonwealth Games in Edmonton, and in particular the performance of Alberta athletes, best symbolized the spirit of optimism that permeated the province in 1978. Its economic performance continued to outdistance that of any other region of the country, and most of the growth was in some way related to the burgeoning gas and oil industry and the resulting construction boom. For the first time in its history Alberta’s gross domestic product was the third largest in the country.

      The visit of us Vice-President Walter Mondale to Edmonton in early January brought to the attention of...

    • Newfoundland and Labrador (pp. 233-239)
      LESLIE HARRIS

      If we were to adopt the traditional Chinese method of dating, we might well determine that 1978 was the year of the fish. Certainly it was the year in which Newfoundland’s original raison d’être was refurbished and presented as the brightest hope in a not unpromising future. As the scales fell magically from their eyes, politicians, businessmen, and citizens in every walk of life suddenly saw the new vision of a strong and healthy community-based economy nurtured by the natural abundance of an infinitely renewable resource whose value would remain proportionally as high as the world demand for protein.

      To...

    • The Yukon and Northwest Territories (pp. 239-246)
      NORA T. CORLEY

      In mid-January a Soviet ocean surveillance satelliteCosmos 954, powered by a small nuclear device, disintegrated over Great Slave Lake. The presumed point of impact, if parts had indeed hit the ground and not burned up upon re-entry into the earth’s atmosphere, was some sixty miles east of Yellowknife. Informed some weeks before that the satellite was in trouble, President Carter made an early morning telephone call to Prime Minister Trudeau to tell him that the satellite was disintegrating. The Unites States Air Force immediately sent aircraft to the area to check for signs of atmospheric contamination. They were supported...

  7. External Affairs and Defence
    • Canadian-American Relations (pp. 249-266)

      Canadian-American relations occupied centre stage in Canadian foreign policy in 1978, and leaders of both countries expressed great satisfaction with the amicability and the productivity of the relationship despite the inevitable difficulties that arose. Indeed negotiations on even serious disagreements such as maritime boundaries were conducted without rancour. In a speech to the Empire Club in Toronto on March 2 Secretary of State for External Affairs Don Jamieson observed that more than 60 per cent of Canada’s external trade was with the United States and expressed pleasure in the closeness and cordiality of bilateral relations:

      You have a situation where...

    • Diplomatic Issues (pp. 266-287)

      The closest possible links and co-operation with the European Community remained what Mr Jamieson called one of the three essential elements in Canadian foreign policy (the others being similarly close relationships with the United States and Japan). Mr Jamieson told the Empire Club in Toronto on March 2:

      We place a great deal of importance and I do personally upon the continuation and expansion and strengthening of our links with the Community. I think that is only fair too to add that it is too early yet to determine whether or not some of the goals of the Third Option...

    • The United Nations (pp. 287-297)

      Canada’s fourth term on the Security Council expired at the end of 1978. In an address to the Thirty-third Session of the General Assembly on September 26 Mr Jamieson advocated periodic informal and private meetings of the Security Council at the ministerial level. ‘Such meetings could give the Council the high-level political direction that is essential if it is to take the initiative in preserving peace when conflict is anticipated as well as restoring it when conflict has occurred.’ He also called for an increase in the size of the Security Council from its present fifteen, arguing that with 150...

    • Economic Issues (pp. 298-305)

      Prime Minister Trudeau represented Canada at the economic summit in Bonn on July 16 and 17, where he met leaders of the United Kingdom, United States, France, Italy, Japan, and West Germany, the president of the Council of Europe, and the president of the Commission of the European Communities. The joint communiqué issued at the close of the meeting presented a comprehensive strategy covering growth, employment, inflation, international monetary policy, energy, trade, and other issues of particular interest to developing countries.

      Concern was expressed about the continuing high level of worldwide unemployment, and the leaders committed themselves to increase employment...

    • Military and Security Issues (pp. 306-312)

      Canada’s defence budget was called into question twice during the year. The government had committed itself in November 1975 to a real annual increase of 12 per cent in the capital budget on top of inflation. The minister of national defence, Barney Danson, told sceand on March 14 that although the capital budget would have 11 per cent added to it in the 1978-9 estimates to allow for inflation the total increase would be only 17 per cent because of the deferral of $60 million, owing to good housekeeping and delays in production. These deferrals would involve no reduction in...

  8. The National Economy
    • Overview (pp. 316-329)

      The total dollar value of production of goods and services in Canada in 1978 increased 10.3 per cent to just under $232 billion. When discounting for inflation the real increase in GNP was 3.4 per cent, a modest improvement from the real increase of 2.7 per cent during 1977.

      The strength of Canadian exports in the world market was once again a principal factor generating positive real GNP growth during the year. Although the contribution of the external sector to Canada’s real growth during 1978 was somewhat below that of 1977, the increase of 8.5 per cent in real exports...

    • Government Programmes and Activities (pp. 330-355)

      When the Anti-Inflation Programme was first introduced in autumn 1975 the consumer price index was increasing annually by about 10.5 per cent and the unemployment rate stood at 7 per cent. Three years later at the end of the Programme the consumer price index was rising by 9.5 per cent and unemployment stood at 8.5 per cent. It could be asked whether the Programme had had any significant impact upon the economy, but many commentators gave it credit for achieving some of its objectives and assisting in moderating the rate of inflation. The gross national product price deflator had increased...

    • Energy (pp. 355-363)

      Large-scale discoveries of natural gas during 1977 and 1978, the decline of the Canadian dollar, the acceleration of the rate of inflation, Ottawa’s desire to attain self-sufficiency in energy by the mid-1980s, and the scheduled one dollar a barrel increase in the price of crude oil on July 1, 1978, and January 1, 1979 (with the associated 17 cents per thousand cubic feet increase in the price of natural gas on these dates), all interacted to create confusion over the role of natural gas in the federal government’s energy strategy.

      On the discovery side, Canadian Hunter Ltd, a wholly owned...

    • Corporate Concentration (pp. 363-366)

      In mid-May the report of the Royal Commission on Corporate Concentration, which had been in operation for three years and had spent just over $3 million, was made public. Much to the relief of the business community the report was a rather conservative document that on most issues supported the views of the business community. The commissioners and researchers showed greater concern for the capacity of the Canadian economy to expand than for the social implications of business activities, so that their report basically supported a laissez-faire approach to business. Though recognizing the social responsibilities of business, the report emphasized...

  9. Obituaries (pp. 367-374)
  10. Acknowledgments (pp. 375-376)
    RBB
  11. Index (pp. 377-391)