Government spending putting the economy at risk

Our ratio of net debt to GDP is almost as high as it was in 1995 when Canada was really in a fiscal crisis

Government spending putting the economy at riskThe Liberals made some big spending promises during last month’s election campaign, amounting to $78 billion in new spending over the next five years. These promises come on top of the existing baseline, which was already no model of austerity. The federal budget was bloated before the pandemic, and even after excluding some necessary public…

Quebec’s Bill 96 will have many economic consequences

Quebec companies that do business abroad will have an incentive to base some of their more vital operations outside the province

Quebec’s Bill 96 will have many economic consequencesRepresenting barely two per cent of the North American population, Quebecers have always had good reason to feel sensitive when it comes to the vitality of French. Concerns about linguistic and cultural assimilation have led to several waves of government intervention aiming to protect the language of Molière. Bill 96 is only the latest manifestation…

Taxing savers is not the solution to Canada’s economic woes

Governments have to stop giving in to populist pressures

Taxing savers is not the solution to Canada’s economic woesNow that the federal election is over, several financial sector experts and economists are turning their attention to the Trudeau government’s promise to raise the corporate income tax rate for banks and insurance companies from 15 per cent to 18 per cent. But while attacking these financial giants can pay off politically, the fact is…

Canada’s plan for climate change needs to use all the tools in its artillery

Why not use carbon emissions as a building block for other industrial processes and products?

Canada’s plan for climate change needs to use all the tools in its artilleryClimate change demands immediate action, and there’s no shortage of discussion about emissions reduction. Indeed, climate policies and pledges flowed left and right leading up to the federal election. However, largely absent from the mainstream dialogue on the shifting energy landscape is any pragmatic talk about the productive use of carbon emissions. That’s right –…

Rather than defund the police, rethink its core functions

Less of an officer's time should be spent on functions that don’t involve protecting the public

Rather than defund the police, rethink its core functionsRising crime rates have required Canadian police forces to reconcile managing their budgets with fighting crime. It’s not an easy balance to strike. Yet there is a simple way to save hundreds of millions of dollars: re-think the division of labour for police. Modern police officers receive extensive training to carry out tasks requiring an…

How to reduce our emissions without penalizing rural regions

Policies should be fair for all Canadians, regardless of where they happen to live

How to reduce our emissions without penalizing rural regionsBy Miguel Ouellette Olivier Rancourt and Krystle Wittevrongel Montreal Economic Institute Reducing our greenhouse gas emissions is one of the big concerns of our age. The numerous diverging interests pitted against each other on this issue make it a real puzzler for policy-makers, though. After many years of public policies aimed at reducing GHGs, layered…

Beware the totalitarian instincts of ‘the collective’

The conflation of state and individual has long been popular among those who crave power over others

Beware the totalitarian instincts of ‘the collective’Last spring, Trent University Professor Christopher Dummitt took us all to task for our insufficient dedication to the collective – which, he worries, leaves those who “call for national sacrifice” on behalf of “the collective will” in a bind, bereft of the obedience they deserve. Dummitt’s alleged “collective action problem” betrays a fundamentally illiberal misunderstanding…

Higher taxes won’t solve our crippling fiscal problems

Instead, the government should be working at finding ways to control spending

Higher taxes won’t solve our crippling fiscal problemsCanadian politicians appear to be gearing up for an election campaign in which they will be asked how they would handle the myriad issues facing the country. Two of our most pressing concerns are Canada’s crippling debt and sky-high deficits. As the Parliamentary Budget Officer (PBO) recently noted , we are currently on track for…

More capitalism leads to less discrimination

Discrimination is actually less pervasive in more competitive industries

More capitalism leads to less discriminationOne of the favourite myths peddled by proponents of government control is that under the free-market system discrimination is rife and leads to unfair outcomes for minorities, women, and other groups. Thus, they say, we need government regulation to correct this unfairness and equalize outcomes. The myth persists despite having been repeatedly debunked over decades,…

Canada’s clean energy future must include nuclear

Ignoring its potential would be a missed opportunity

Canada’s clean energy future must include nuclearIn 1950, Canada faced a difficult choice between the desire to be a leader in the development of nuclear energy technology and the fear that such technology would bring the end of the world a little closer. Despite concerns related to the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Canada elected to be in the vanguard. As…
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