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While we hope working families used the holidays to spend time with family and friends, we fear this holiday has been full of foreshadowing of hard times to come.

We hope the federal government will be forced to take the action required to protect working people from the effects of the coming recession.

However we fear that the Liberal’s new leader will slip back into the party’s former habit of supporting the conservatives.

And with that will come more of the do-nothing approach that provoked December’s opposition coalition, more of the enabling policies that have led to the meltdown in the paper economy, more tax cuts for corporations and the wealthy that have disempowered the federal government at a time when it desperately needs to be act.

And as the recession drags on, and as provinces and cities see their revenues fall, we will see cutbacks in social services and health care, while the environment will take a back seat - again - to the economy.

Despite our misgivings, we remain hopeful that if people organize against in action - if they make videos, send emails, and go to rallies, demanding government action to fight the recession, the Harper government may act, if only to prolong its life.

Harper must understand that a show of sympathy is not going to save his government, nor will it save the lives and livelihoods of those who will be hurt by inaction in the face of the recession.