Lies, damned lies and statistics

Given the billions of dollars and political agendas at stake, citizens should always take government stats with a measure of reserve

Lies, damned lies and statistics“This is the best number I’ve ever seen in my life!” Jim Cramer told CNBC. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics had just reported a 3.5 per cent unemployment figure in the United States. The November 2019 percentage was the lowest in 50 years. Others would say that might not be the case and that…

Energy industry a pipeline to Indigenous prosperity

The link between oil sands development and First Nations prosperity is clear and profound. Project delays can be devastating

Energy industry a pipeline to Indigenous prosperityBy Mark Milke and Lennie Kaplan Canadian Energy Centre When Teck Resources cancelled its proposed Frontier oil sands project last month, Canada lost more than the government revenues and blue-collar jobs the mine would have created. The loss of this project was also a blow to northern First Nations communities. On average, people who live…

Justin Trudeau’s leadership failure

Leadership is complicated. Character counts, as do vision, competence, judgment and the ability to persuade or inspire. The PM misses the mark

Justin Trudeau’s leadership failureLooking at Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s handling of the ongoing blockade fiasco, it’s difficult to avoid comparison with how his father, Pierre Trudeau, dealt with the 1970 October Crisis. Faced with the revolutionary FLQ’s kidnappings of British trade commissioner James Cross and Quebec provincial cabinet minister Pierre Laporte, the senior Trudeau moved decisively as prime…

Socialism doesn’t help community, it destroys it

When people believe it’s the government’s job to help someone, they stop doing it themselves

Socialism doesn’t help community, it destroys it“God giveth and the government taketh away,” goes the old, wry saying. God aside, it’s people who won’t or can’t give when the government takes away. A recent survey of generosity in the United States and Canada gives proof. The more centralist and socialist a society becomes, the less voluntary giving occurs. Socialism doesn't help…

ShutDownCanada claims are spurious and harmful

ShutDownCanada claims are spurious and harmfulOn Tuesday, while activists reportedly tried to “arrest” Premier John Horgan at his house in British Columbia, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau spoke to the House of Commons, stressing the need for “patience” as rail blockades continue to prevent freight and passenger movement across Canada. The #ShutDownCanada movement is in full swing across the country, with…

Persian Gulf region badly needs economic liberalization

When opportunities to engage in economic activity are open to all, not just the privileged classes, prosperity and opportunity abound

Persian Gulf region badly needs economic liberalizationBy Miguel Cervantes and Tanja Porčnik The Fraser Institute While tensions in the Middle East rise daily, there’s still hope for the region to liberalize and grow more prosperous. Economic liberalism in the Persian Gulf region would help unleash the effort and creativity of the whole population – not just a few at the top.…

A life of honour, tradition and service to others

The story of Mary John is one of perseverance and resilience, and should serve as an example to all who read it

A life of honour, tradition and service to othersOne of the benefits of teaching is that I get to make the final choice with regard to the books we study in class. With a greater emphasis on Indigenous content in the new British Columbia curriculum, I was drawn to Stoney Creek Woman, the story of Mary John. The Stoney Creek Reserve, today called…

Humanity faces a huge and growing crisis

The number of displaced, marginalized and impoverished people continues to grow. How we handle this will determine mankind’s future

Humanity faces a huge and growing crisisAt any given time, there are about 20 million people on the move in the world. When there’s war, terrorism, extreme weather events or other disruptions, this can grow to 80 million people trying to get to safety. We hear of illegal immigrants crossing borders and thousands of people walking north through Central America to…

Poverty, homelessness must be tackled by business

Not only does work help financially but it empowers people to take control of their lives and rise above poverty

Poverty, homelessness must be tackled by businessHomelessness is increasingly a problem in cities big and small across North America. Yet as business leaders we tend think the issue isn’t our problem – unless, of course, we have a business affected by a homeless camp, squatters in our doorsteps or addicts in our alleyways. We can’t comprehend why people aren’t working like…

Lonely and hungry: the vital role of food banks

Almost half of the people visiting food banks live alone. The single-household economy is clearly not doing so well. It's time for some social retooling

Lonely and hungry: the vital role of food banksWe’re reminded every year how many Canadians are left behind in our society, without enough food. Hunger Count 2019 has just been released. The report says that despite a strong economy and living in one of the richest countries in the world, many Canadians still don’t have enough food. The report says food banks have…

Is the rise in inequality exaggerated?

Is the rise in inequality exaggerated?The rise in economic inequality is one of the most potent 21st century memes. You could even call it pervasive. It dominates the debate in the Democratic presidential contest and has a material echo in our current federal election. The rich – particularly the notorious one per cent – must be made to “pay their…

At election time, is all spending good spending?

It’s right for Canadians to value a just society that leaves no one behind. But relying on ever-increasing spending to do so is driving us toward bankruptcy

At election time, is all spending good spending?I know what it means to live in poverty. I grew up in a large family in a small village in Cape Breton, the fourth of eight children. My father was a wonderful man who struggled with alcoholism his whole life. We had no running water and only a coal stove to heat the house.…

Low-income Canadian families squeezed from both ends

When a dollar earned triggers higher taxes and simultaneously reduces benefits, what’s left to spend or save?

Low-income Canadian families squeezed from both endsA look at effective tax rates across provinces shows that many low-income families in Canada take home 40 cents or less on the additional dollars they earn. The marginal effective tax rate – which accounts for how much you pay in additional income taxes and lose in federal and provincial transfer benefits when you earn…
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