Could It Happen Here? Canada in The Age of Trump and Brexit
Simon and Schuster, September 2017
Amid an international scene convulsed by populist political uprisings, Canada appears placid, at least on its surface. As the US, Britain, and other societies retrench, the international media have taken notice of Canada’s apparent calm. After more than a year in power, Canada’scentrist federal government continues to enjoy majority approval, suggesting an electorate not as bitterly split as those elsewhere. Open on immigration, rational on climate, and unapologetic on gender equity, the Trudeau Liberals cleave to principles that seemed relatively safe in many Western societies a few years ago but are under threat in many places today.
As skeptics point out, however, Brexit and a Trump presidency were unthinkable until they happened and Canada is not immune to the forces of populism, social fracture, and backlash. A massacre at a Quebec City mosque offered a grim window onto an extremist subculture. Two Conservative leadership candidates draw inspiration from the Trump worldview. Opinion polls show anxiety among Canadians about the cultural integration of newcomers.
In his latest book, pollster and social values researcher Michael Adams takes Canadians into the examining room to see whether we are at risk of coming down with the malaise affecting other Western democracies. Drawing on major social values surveys ofCanadians and Americans in 2016-- as well as decades of tracking data in both countries-- Adams reflects on the question, Could It Happen Here?