A message from the Viaticus Team:
I hate to start things off on a cliché but a great man once said that a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. So here is the first step. Welcome to Viaticus, a journal intended to inform and inspire discussion about the ever-changing world. No time in our lifetime has there been so much to discuss.
The western world is known for its economic prosperity but in 2008 that very prosperity was challenged in a way that the world hasn’t seen since the great depression. It turned out that the pursuit of the American dream had led American civilization to the brink of collapse.
In the past year there has been much discussion about the role that greed played in the recession. People were losing their jobs while CEOs were padding their golden parachutes and awarding themselves multimillion dollar bonuses. This has led to the “Occupy movement” to fight for the rights of the 99% and all that jazz. While I personally don’t subscribe to their ideology, (partly because camping in a park with no resources and substantial police presence doesn’t exactly sound like a fun way to spend my time,) Occupy started a phenomenon where people stood up and asked the questions that needed to be asked.
In Canada, though the recession hurt, we were able to weather the storm better than most. However, this does not provide us with an excuse for complacency. The Canada-US relationship is one of the most extensive economic partnerships of anywhere in the world. We share the world’s longest undefended border along with cultural ties that allow us to thrive off of each other. This being the case I have to once again refer to an old cliché. When the US gets a cold, Canada gets pneumonia. Thankfully Canada has not fallen terribly ill but our ties to the US act a little as an anvil around our ankle as we try and climb the greasy pole back up to prosperity. The world is changing. The Canadian government needs to expand its horizons beyond the 49th parallel.
Unfortunately, the rest of the world is no cakewalk either. With the European Union almost at the point of auctioning off a country or two, what was once a harmonious symphony has now turned in to an orchestra with some members missing, instruments out of tune, and a crescendo of frustration from the German conductor.
Life is hard, anyone can tell you that, but what’s harder is having to make the tough decisions for what you know is right. Years of prosperity have allowed the world to sink into habits that have led us to where we are now. Sacrifices have to be made to get us back on track. So let’s all take a deep breath, tighten our belts, and steel ourselves for the new year.
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