Monday, July 25, 2011

The “New Saskatchewan”: Neoliberal Renewal or Redux?

Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
Saskatchewan Office
Socialist Studies, Spring/Fall 2011

The release of Naomi Klein’s Shock Doctrine has popularized the notion that neoliberalism has relied on the rhetoric of crisis and emergency to persuade citizens to accept its economic dictates. How then does one “sell” the neoliberal vision when there can be no recourse to crisis rhetoric, particularly to a population steeped in a social democratic political culture?

It is this question that this essay attempts to resolve by investigating the discourse of the “New Saskatchewan” that has been a favourite and recurrent meme of the Saskatchewan Party since the 2003 electoral campaign.

This paper will argue that rather than relying on the rhetoric of crisis, the “New Saskatchewan” puts forward a discourse of prosperity that promises to unleash the full economic potential of the province through neoliberal economic policy. Moreover, the “New Saskatchewan” (NS) discourse has been specifically tailored to advance this neoliberal project in Saskatchewan by taking special care to address the local specificities unique to the politics of the province, while drawing upon historical narratives and themes that have been emblematic of Saskatchewan political history.

Read HERE.

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