• Policy-makers should pay attention to world happiness rankings

    That’s the whole purpose of the happiness report. To raise the awareness that there are these scientifically replicable measures of the quality of life that don’t give you the same answers as GDP and don’t invite the same policies that maximizing GDP would mean… If these numbers are taken seriously, it’s to raise the level of policy awareness and discussion.”

  • Trump threatens to derail Trudeau’s economic fairness agenda

    Trump’s vow to cut U.S. taxes “bigly” does make it more difficult for Canada to raise its levies on the well-to-do, which Morneau has also been contemplating. Last year, the finance minister announced plans to look at tax breaks, sometimes called tax expenditures, which cost the federal treasury billions. But the Liberals will find it more difficult to boost taxes on the wealthy if, as expected, Trump’s America is going in the opposite direction.

  • Cutting the fiscal fat, finance ministers find lot of baloney

    Every budget dollar is precommitted to: debt service (approximately 9 per cent), transfers for health, education etc. (24 per cent), guaranteed spending for Old Age Security and Guaranteed Income Supplement etc. (17 per cent), and salaries and pensions for its own employees (29 per cent). When all the obligatory spending is sliced from the budget pie, every Canadian finance minister is left with about 20 cents of the budget dollar.

  • Alternative Federal Budget 2017: High Stakes, Clear Choices

    … we’re urging the federal government to table a budget that makes good on its promises to reduce income inequality and drive inclusive growth… the AFB proposes a federal budget that takes decisive action on what matters to Canadians: creating jobs, reducing income inequality, lowering poverty levels, closing unfair and expensive tax loopholes, and getting the economy moving.

  • For a progressive federal budget, Liberals must stick to their promises in the Trump era

    … the government has barely begun to act on its promises to bring about transformational change for First Nations communities through investments in education and basic infrastructure… Significant new revenues could, and should, be raised – by tackling tax loopholes for the most affluent… progressive policies, rather than a race to the bottom, will create not just a fairer society, but also a more productive and future-oriented economy.

  • The problem with $47 billion in unpaid taxes

    Think of what could be accomplished if that money was actually collected by the federal government; the programs it could fund, the benefits it could offer to citizens, the improvements to health care that would be possible. The federal deficit could be eliminated. Moreover, collecting this $47 billion would demonstrate to all Canadians the federal government is working hard to ensure everyone pays their fair share, no more and no less.

  • How Canada can lead on the global stage

    The struggle against extremist violence will require more than bombs and bullets. It also demands an understanding about creating stronger institutions, better education and social conditions, and the stability and security in which businesses can thrive and create jobs. “Aid,” “Emergency Humanitarian Assistance,” “Defence,” “Diplomacy,” are not separate silos but have to be made to fit together.

  • Federal budget should close gap between rhetoric and resources

    The government should… index the Canada Child Benefit to inflation, fix the EI system by creating fair and universal criteria for access, and pay for… affordable housing… [and] the $155 million in emergency relief it promised to First Nations children living on reserves… On the revenue side… it should continue to invest in tax compliance… [and] limit or scrap some of the many loopholes… that benefit the richest with no evident contribution to the public good.

  • Top 10 List for Minister Morneau: Shadow Budget 2017

    To set a credible path to balance, hold the line on transfers to other levels of government, contain Ottawa’s own compensation costs and shrink or eliminate many tax expenditures, including the age credit, the LSVCC credit and some boutique credits; To encourage businesses to grow, replace preferential tax treatment for small businesses with temporary preferential treatment for young businesses…

  • Don’t fear Trudeau’s proportional representation bogeymen

    It’s important not to exaggerate how much would change under PR. It’s possible to win now, in a riding with several candidates, with as little as 28 per cent of the vote, and quite common to do so with less than 33 per cent… If I think a party would be bad for Canada, it’s my responsibility to get out and persuade my fellow citizens not to vote for them — not rig the system so they can’t.