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There are two reasons why it is difficult to comment on the legacy of a finance minister.

1) It is a tremendously challenging job, anywhere, any time. Stewarding one of the largest economies in the world through a global economic crisis is no cakewalk, and it has clearly taken a toll on Jim Flaherty. (Canada has fallen from 8th to 11th largest economy since 2006.) Critiquing this performance, when so many factors are beyond an individual’s control, and so much soul-searching takes place behind the scenes, is neither easy nor lovely.

2) Where does a prime minister end and a finance minister begin? There is little sunshine between these two positions in any administration, all the more so with the Stephen Harper administration. Nobody is confused about who is boss. So are we judging Mr. Flaherty’s legacy, or Mr. Harper’s?

Still, Mr. Flaherty’s departure is a good time to trace his eight-year contribution to Canada’s fiscal history.

Here is a contrarian view on four widely touted accomplishments, and two major developments that have received little notice in the round-up of opinion on the Flaherty legacy...

Flaherty’s legacy? Ideological, reckless and just plain lucky - The Globe and Mail

Worth reading for the links and the historical overview of Mr. Flaherty's actual policies.

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