Saturday, April 17, 2010

Explaining the Saskatchewan NDP's shift to "Third Way" Social Democracy

By David McGrane, Carleton University

Since the election of Tommy Douglas’ first Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (CCF) government in 1944, Saskatchewan has been considered the home of social democracy in English Canada. This paper begins by briefly describing the ‘traditional social democracy’ of CCF-NDP governments in Saskatchewan from 1944 to 1982 which was characterized by the expansion of universal social programs, the use of public investment and state intervention as a tools of economic development, the imposition of labour code reforms on business and the creation of public enterprise for essential services and the extraction of natural resources.

The paper then describes the shift of the NDP government in the 1990s to ‘Third Way’ social democracy which focused on the maintenance of public enterprise for essential services, the attraction of external  private investment as the principle means of economic development, the search for a consensus between employers and unions on labour code modifications, the rationalization of universal social programs and the expansion of targeted social programs.

“Explaining the Saskatchewan NDP’s Shift to Third Way Social Democracy” -

Roy Romanow tried legislating Saskatewan nurses back to work in the 1990's. Third Way social democracy lost that battle. See the video below from 100 Years of Nursing.
Click on Saskatchewan nurses strike in 1999 here

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