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Evangelical Christians find a home in Conservative politics

Thursday, October 11th, 2012

Oct. 10 2012
Evangelicals’ support for the Conservatives is tremendously helpful in the form of financial contributions and votes. Only occasionally does their presence make itself felt, as in the abortion debate, usually without much direct effect. But indirectly, their view contributes to how the Conservatives see the world and act within it.

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Posted in Governance Debates | 1 Comment »

A matter of justice, without delay

Friday, September 28th, 2012

Sep. 28 2012
… crime rates are the lowest in decades… with youth crime falling faster than overall crime. And yet, less crime has not translated into lower court costs. Crime is down 33 per cent in the past six years, but criminal justice costs are up 35 per cent in the same period.

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Posted in Equality Delivery System | No Comments »

Canada’s made a choice: health, not education

Wednesday, September 12th, 2012

Sep. 12 2012
… investments in education aren’t just useful, they’re essential for human development, economic competitiveness, a flourishing democracy, individual fulfilment and raising the productivity on which depends the country’s long-term ability to finance government programs, including health care.

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Posted in Education Delivery System | No Comments »

Small numbers are a hard reality for first nations

Wednesday, August 8th, 2012

25 July 2012
Sheer math would suggest that aboriginals are over-governed, with too many chiefs for very small populations. But then that is part of the Indian reality: very small populations on scattered reserves, with different cultural traditions, struggling to keep native languages alive… on land bases that range in size and quality. No matter the rhetoric of self-affirmation, populations of a few hundred people, or a few thousand for that matter, will struggle to provide even some of the services of a modern state, which is what the word “sovereignty” is all about, in practical if not rhetorical terms.

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Posted in Governance Debates | No Comments »

A university degree’s value is incontestable

Saturday, July 21st, 2012

Jul. 20 2012
In 2009… those with a bachelor’s degree had an unemployment rate of 5.2 per cent, about 2.5 points below the national rate. Those with graduate degrees were doing even better, at 4.6 per cent. By comparison, those with only a high-school degree had a jobless rate of 9.1 per cent, and those with only “some” high school faced an unemployment rate of 15.9 per cent… The income gap between those with university credentials and those without starts slowly in the first few years after graduation, but after a decade, the gap is wide and stays there.

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Posted in Education Debates | No Comments »

Physician, restrain thyself

Wednesday, July 11th, 2012

Jul. 11 2012
From 1998 to 2008, physician compensation grew faster than the price of other services purchased by governments, and faster than the average wages of other groups in the health and social services sector… In Ontario… remuneration went up sharply as the government tried to entice family practitioners to group themselves in teams and offered incentives for this change. It was inevitable that these very generous increases could not continue.

Posted in Health Delivery System | 1 Comment »

The debate over the state is getting stale

Wednesday, July 4th, 2012

Jun. 29 2012
… slower growth and higher deficits raise the question for many whether the state is a friend or enemy of more growth and deficit-reduction… The two prescriptions – left and right – leave large unanswered questions. The left is so worried about today’s economic frailties that it remains unclear when and how even larger government deficits would be ever paid down, as eventually they must. And the right is so fixated on the ills caused by government that it remains apparently oblivious to the short-term hurt its restrictive policies are having – or would have – on growth, jobs and recovery.

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Posted in Policy Context | No Comments »

We’re happy, and now we know it

Sunday, June 24th, 2012

Jun. 23 2012
… despite the periodic bitching about poor teachers and assertions that the education system is going to rack and ruin, the evidence from testing of students suggests good things are happening within Canadian education. Better education leads to less crime, more income, greater job satisfaction and a more harmonious society… By contrast, the Canadian health-care system ranks somewhere in the middle of the pack for results and patient satisfaction – despite being near the top in spending.

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Posted in Child & Family Debates | No Comments »

Fight obesity by fighting poverty

Wednesday, June 6th, 2012

Jun. 06 2012
Data from the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development show Canadians among the least fit people in the industrialized world… Its researchers have looked at studies from many countries and figured out what works and what doesn’t… The best results came from targeted work with at-risk individuals (not the entire population)… The core reason for poor health habits is overwhelmingly linked to income. The poorer you are, the poorer your health. Deal with income inequalities and the population will be healthier. Appoint another panel, and nothing will happen.

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Posted in Health Debates | 1 Comment »

‘Time and punishment’ now Canada’s way

Saturday, May 19th, 2012

May. 18, 2012
Corrections – the idea that those in prison might be assisted while incarcerated to be better prepared for life outside jail – is apparently foreign to the Harper government. Instead, it wants to put more people away for longer, then, figuratively speaking, throw away the key. Punishment is in; correction is out. Just when you think this government’s criminal justice policies, which have been almost universally denounced by experts in the field, can’t get worse, they do.

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Posted in Child & Family Debates | 1 Comment »

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