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Trump is right: Canada's protectionist food policies rip the world off

Sunday - 17/06/2018 12:31
Trump is right about one thing: Canada charges the US exorbitant tariffs on dairy.Canada's supply-management system rigs the market with centralized price-setting, allocated production quotas, and exorbitant tariffs.

This drives massive profits to a small group of largely corporate farm operations, while the dairy industry has a well-funded lobby and propaganda operation.

Canada's prime minister, Justin Trudeau, won't back away from his claim that "we will always defend our supply management system."
Evan Vucci/AP Images
Evan Vucci/AP Images

Before we pick apart the recent calumnies heaped upon Canada by the president of the United States and his lieutenants, it is useful to meet a woman who may fairly be described as the perfect anti-Trump: a thoughtful, impeccably rational, fluently bilingual Canadian policy wonk named Martha Hall Findlay. 

At the federal Liberal Party's epic 2006 convention, Hall Findlay was the only woman among the eight leadership candidates and came in dead last. In 2013, she tried again, campaigning on important but hopelessly technocratic issues such as building a national energy infrastructure. This time, she ranked a respectable third. But since now-Prime Minister Justin Trudeau won that contest on the first ballot with 79% of votes cast, silver and bronze ranked as mere footnotes. 

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