While checking out some of the day's news on Google I came across a headline, "Students at Queen's Park to protest poverty."
Reacting to the first line of the article, "Hundreds of student protesters...[forced] road closures and traffic snarls for part of the afternoon," I couldn't help but chuckle at the irony.
The way to end poverty is to get out of the way and let entrepreneurs engage in production and trade. Forcing road closures and traffic snarls not only effects commerce and trade, but also the quality of life of those whose free time was ruined, which is probably more important. Afterall, we work so that we can produce a more enjoyable standard of living, not just for the sake of production.
I could have just let it go with a chuckle over the irony had these students been addressing serious solutions to poverty (of which we in Canada really know nothing about, but I digress...). Instead, the protests were pushing predictable ideas of more government interference in the wealth-producing private sector in order to redistribute funds.
The article goes on to mention that the students were also concerned about rising unemployment and rising tuition set against the backdrop of the current recession. The students are concerned about their futures, and for good reason. If only they understood about the debt they are inheriting, they would have far more reason for concern about the future. My one-year old niece is on the hook for $15,000 of federal government debt, just waiting for her in the coming years. And due to the policies of the same government, I have trouble forming an optimistic outlook for the job market she will be participating in.
We are on the verge of discovering what real poverty is all about. Thankfully, Canada hosts a great deal of opportunity with the vast resources that could be put to good use in a free market. If only we let the private sector produce wealth, it will pull us all higher.