Yesterday I went to see Dr. Madsen Pirie, president of the UK-based Adam Smith Institute, who was speaking to the Empire Club.
I first met Dr. Pirie nearly 20 years ago when the National Citizens Coalition brought him over to Canada to speak on his specialty at the time -- privatization.
Nowadays he is pushing the idea of a flat tax, a concept he says which has been used quite successfully in Eastern Europe and which he predicts will sweep over the rest of Europe.
Dr. Pirie also praised the wealth-producing effects of freer trade and globalization.
In fact, he says thanks to freer trade, more people were lifted out of poverty last year than any time in human history.
Dr. Pirie also says if global wealth continues to be generated at the current rate by the year 2050 the average Canadian will have the standard of living of today's millionaires.
Also by 2050 the average citizens of India and China will have the standard of living enjoyed by the middle class of North America today.
His point is that you don't help poorer countries achieve prosperity by foreign aid; you do it by buying their stuff.