The questions in this and
the following Appendixes are as important as the answers. They presuppose a concern with
the Capitalist Mode of Being. This Survey focuses on Canada, but it could have
focused on any country -- the United States, England, France, Spain, Italy, etc. Canada
has been chosen for several reasons:
- It is the world's
"best" place to live (at least according to the U.N.1)
- It is a Capitalist country
with a social safety net.
- It is a liberal democracy.
- It is blessed with
unsurpassed, fabulous natural riches.
- It is blessed with an
entrepreneurial spirit and a rich diversity of cultures.
- Its firms have access to the
largest and richest market in the world -- the U.S.A.
Despite all these
"advantages," Canada came within a fraction of a percent from breaking up?
Apparently, many Québécois want to separate from Canada -- culturally, politically, and
The Appendixes seek to
probe, question, and challenge the Rule of Capitalism in "democracies." The
Heideggerian way of looking, seeking, understanding, investigating, and analyzing,2-3 is used. What
is implied in the Appendixes is that the economic being of
the citizen in a place X can be threatened by the Capitalist Mode of Being in
place X. The conceptual understanding of the essential character of economic
developments in a place like Canada helps unconceal the true essence of Capitalism -- in
Canada and elsewhere. What has been forgotten4 by politicians and economists is
that questions about the economy are not just questions about government finances, big business profits, or universal big banks,
but, much more importantly, questions about the citizen's economic being -- the citizen's existence, the
citizen's freedom, the citizen's options, the citizen's life. Today, Canadians
and Americans are more indentured than ever. What is important, what is asked about,5 is not what politicians,
economists, or bankers think, but what the citizen's economic being is.
See UN Human Development Report 1996; ranking based on the UN Human Development
This method of inquiry follows Heidegger's concerning the question of Being; see
Martin Heidegger, Being and Time, translated by John Macquarrie and Edward
Robinson, 1962, at 24-28 (The Formal Structure of the Question of Being), especially 24
("Every inquiry is a seeking. Every seeking gets guided beforehand by what is
sought. . .'").
3 For a philosophical
insight into the Heideggerian way of questioning ("the concept of 'question'" as
"reference to a self"), see Paul Ricoeur, The Conflict of Interpretations,
edited by Don Ihde, 1969 and 1974, at 223-235 (Heidegger and the Question of the Subject;
originally published in English under the title "The Critique of Subjectivity and
Cogito in the Philosophy of Heidegger," in Heidegger and the Quest for Truth,
edited by Manfred S. Frings, 1968, Quadrangle Books, Chicago).
4 Ibid., at
225 ("[f]orgottenness"; "[w]hat is important in the question is that it is
ruled by the questioned -- by the thing about which the question is asked.").
expression; see Martin Heidegger, Being and Time, 1962, at 25.