He contributes these shifting ideals to the fact that Ontario has, as he says, become “a Manhattan on Lake Ontario and whole lot of Ohio around it.” If you aren't in Toronto, you are in an area that resembles Ohio, he explains—an increasingly conservative area that relies on manufacturing and agriculture, and is declining in population. This leaves anyone living in these outlying areas looking to the West for a “common cause,” as they want to remain competitive. It is the immigrant suburban middle class especially, he notes, that is driving this shift. The concept of Canada's shifting power base is somethign that Ibbitson has covered extensively in his book, The Big Shift: The Seismic Change in Canadian Politics, Business, and Culture and What It Means for Our Future. Based on his acclaimed keynote, The Collapse of the Laurentian Consensus, the book explains that business and political elites in the East are losing power, and the West has filled the power void. He is the Ottawa bureau chief for The Globe and Mail and covers the changing landscape of the nation's federal political system in his polished writing and compelling keynotes.
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