The debt, the deficit – and other things this election isn’t about

Posted on in Governance Debates

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Canada has the lowest debt burden in the Group of Seven. The weight of federal debt is not heavy and increasing; it’s light and shrinking…. Relative to a $2.3-trillion economy, deficits of roughly $20-billion or less are small enough that the federal debt-to-GDP ratio will continue to steadily fall… Ottawa’s tax take today is smaller than at any other time in recent history…

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Child & Family

Giving parents money directly the best approach to financing childcare

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The financial hurdle for a parent considering the merits of working versus staying at home to care for young children can be extremely high… decentralizing the provision of child care by giving money directly to parents provides the advantages of competitive consumer markets: greater choices, innovation in staffing, various facility types, and more flexible hours and modes of care.


Ontario’s top judges slam Ford government over cuts to legal aid

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Ontario’s most senior judges delivered a rare public rebuke Tuesday of the Ford government’s cuts to legal aid funding… Critics had already said that for years the legal aid system has been underfunded, resulting in individuals being turned down for assistance as they made too much money to qualify, yet also did not make enough to hire their own lawyer.


Education

Canada Research Chairs program announces new, more ambitious equity targets

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After 13 years of slow progress towards its equity goals, the Canada Research Chairs (CRC) program is redoubling efforts to improve diversity within the program. On July 31, the Tri-agency Institutional Programs Secretariat… announced more ambitious targets for representation of four equity-seeking groups: women, persons with disabilities, Indigenous people and visible minorities.


Ontario faculty, staff, and students oppose Ford government’s “performance” funding for postsecondary institutions

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… research shows that performance funding is incapable of credibly reflecting the breadth and depth of a student’s education, the long-term benefits of basic research projects, or the contributions of a faculty or staff member. Instead, research shows that this funding model is far more likely to have negative consequences – slowly but certainly eroding the integrity of Ontario’s postsecondary education system.


Employment

Economic analysis of child benefit bolsters case for national basic income

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The Canada Child Benefit has not only lifted kids out of poverty, but it has boosted the country’s economy by $139 billion since 2016, according to a new economic analysis of the initiative… Every dollar Ottawa spends in child benefits generates almost $2 in economic activity, says the report by the Canadian Centre for Economic Analysis


Canada doesn’t lack in terms of university-industry collaboration

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The share of industry-funded R&D in Canadian universities hovered around eight percent over the past couple of decades. That may not sound like a lot, but it has been consistently higher than the equivalent figure for American universities, which has fluctuated at around five percent in the same period.


Equality

Tax Loopholes and Credits Cost Billions. Voters Need to Understand Them

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Budget documents list hundreds of “tax expenditures” or loopholes, potential revenue that the government has chosen to forego for one reason or another. In general, these are legal ways individuals and corporations can reduce the amount of tax they pay. Many are widely used and well-supported, but a significant number give an unfair advantage to people who already have more money.


Ottawa willfully discriminated against First Nations children. Silence is no longer an option

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Greater numbers of Canadians are beginning to see the overwhelming evidence of federal government discrimination against First Nations children and are demanding action… Enough is enough… Now is the time for a comprehensive plan.


Health

Overview of the Second Report of the Premier’s Council on Improving Healthcare and Ending Hallway Medicine: Part III

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… the Council suggests that accurately capturing patient experience in all aspects of the health care system is paramount. When assessing value for money, the Council advises the government to  work to develop indicators that measure patient and overall population health outcomes against the cost of administering and delivering services in the most efficient way.


Federal Election 2019

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It is the role of the federal government to set the national direction for health care, providing both funding and national standards to ensure quality care for all… The federal government should ensure that people across Canada can access the same quality of public health care. It’s also time to adopt a public, universal pharmacare program and a national seniors’ care strategy.


Inclusion

I live in Quebec, and wish I felt connected to the rest of Canada. Here’s how we can come together

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TheGlobeandMail.com – Opinion September 22, 2019.   Fabrice Vil Fabrice Vil is founder and executive director of Pour 3 Points, an organization that transforms sports coaches into life coaches for youth in low-income neighbourhoods in Montreal. He is also an Ashoka Fellow, a columnist at La Presse and was a lawyer in civil and commercial […]


That Sun Column Was No Outlier. Postmedia Has Embraced Dishonest, Dangerous Propaganda

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The right is becoming radicalized. Many of the movement’s loudest leaders and members are strangers to truth, reason and empathy. … from their denial of climate change reality to their inhumane treatment of immigrants, refugees and other minorities. But right-wing commentators and parties across the world, including in Canada, have also demonstrated this irrationality and absence of empathy.


Social Security

Canada needs more workers, and political supports for children and seniors can help

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In 2018, for every 100 people between 15 and 64 years old, there were 50 people younger or older than them, dependent on those working people for their work and their tax revenues to pay for social programs. By 2068, that ratio will rise to anywhere between 63 and 73… in order to maintain the income supports that we already have… The more people in the workforce, the easier that becomes.


Open Letter to federal candidates urging support for a national basic income

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A great many [issues] are linked to income insecurity, which manifests itself in the form of costly symptoms, like anxiety, illness and societal unrest. If the underlying problem is about income, however, then the solution must be too or it will not get better.


Governance

How do you tell a Conservative from a Liberal? Ask an economist

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Where once the party stood for bold, broad tax reform, it now confines itself to a clutch of micro-targeted “boutique” tax credits, such as for children’s fitness or transit passes: spending programs by another name, of precisely the sort of busy-bodying, social-engineering bent that Conservatives used to disdain, and not very effective even at that.


The debt, the deficit – and other things this election isn’t about

Source: — Authors:

Canada has the lowest debt burden in the Group of Seven. The weight of federal debt is not heavy and increasing; it’s light and shrinking…. Relative to a $2.3-trillion economy, deficits of roughly $20-billion or less are small enough that the federal debt-to-GDP ratio will continue to steadily fall… Ottawa’s tax take today is smaller than at any other time in recent history…