This book is divided into two parts. In the first part, Gairdner gives some basic background on various western political ideologies.
In the second part, explains what’s wrong with Canada. The problems include: excessive welfare, foreign aid, feminism, health care, the criminal justice system, socialist churches, government corruption, multiculturalism, bilingualism and immigration.
My copy of the book was published in 1990. I take Gairdner to be a nearly perfect conservative (of that time period) with some libertarian sympathies. In that sense, I found the book somewhat depressing.
The problems Gairdner identifies have all gotten worse since 1990. Gairdner’s analysis of these problems is very good by the standards of today’s conservatives (there are bell curves in the part of book criticizing equality, for example).
The saddest bit is that Gairdner’s positions have moved from the relatively mainstream right to the extreme right in the intervening 20 years. Perhaps then, the book is best read as evidence of the failure of conservatism during this time.