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Another week, another courtroom, another defeat for Doug Ford on climate change

Tuesday, November 17th, 2020

Several young people (ranging in age from 12 to 24) argued that the decision to pursue less stringent GHG reductions amounts to a violation of their Charter rights. They asked the court to order the government to adopt a “science-based” target and want a declaration that a stable climate is part of our Charter rights… It’s true that courts have been willing to make decisions with broad impacts before, but this would be something nearly revolutionary.

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Five things you should know about Ontario’s 2020 budget

Friday, November 6th, 2020

Here are five key items from the 2020-21 budget. 1. Record spending makes for a record deficit — but not record interest payments… 2. Health-care spending is, unsurprisingly, growing during the pandemic… 3. Lots of help for small businesses… 4. Lean years for schools coming(?)… 5. The cries for Ottawa’s money will never stop… As it stands, federal transfers to Ontario in this fiscal year were $33.4 billion, up $8 billion from last year.

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Basic income would be the biggest reordering of public finance in a generation

Wednesday, September 16th, 2020

… the question of how it would be paid for (the UBI Works page on suggested tax increases to fund a UBI is eye-opening, in multiple senses of the phrase). One point that is worth dwelling on early in the discussion is what a UBI would mean for a pretty fundamental element of Canadian politics: the balance between federal and provincial spending.

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There’s no such thing as a non-partisan recovery plan. Deal with it

Saturday, May 16th, 2020

… it’s worth being honest about COVID-19 recovery efforts: Trudeau’s plans are going to be different from Ford’s because they believe very different things… If you were a small-government conservative before the pandemic, Trudeau’s response will upset you; if you were a socialist before Ontario’s first coronavirus case, I regret to inform you that Doug Ford will not be leading the people in glorious revolution… conservative premiers will have enormous power to shape and constrain the federal response.

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