Archive for the ‘Governance’ Category

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Doug Ford has bungled affordable housing and now Ottawa is rubbing his nose in it

Tuesday, May 14th, 2024

The federal government now says it will send funding directly to municipalities, cutting Ontario out of the equation entirely… Why can the two levels of government come together to build subsidized factories, but not subsidized housing? … Ultimately, the friction over funding may have less to do with personalities than priorities. In Ford’s Ontario, unaffordable factories count for more than affordable housing.

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We are rich Canadians and we support higher capital gains taxes

Tuesday, April 23rd, 2024

Ottawa wants to raise taxes for Canada’s ultra-rich. Rich people like us want that, too… with 1 per cent of the country’s residents holding over a quarter of all wealth. We need higher taxes to level out this rising wealth inequality… to fund new spending on priorities like Old Age Security, clean economy, medical care, child care, and housing, but it doesn’t go far enough to address class distortions… we’d also like to see a “super wealth tax,” an inheritance tax, and progressive property taxes

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Trudeau would be wise to raise the GST to 7 per cent instead of reforming the capital gains tax

Tuesday, April 23rd, 2024

… the GST has underwritten Canada’s social safety net for more than 30 years. In 2006… the GST accounted for 30.6 per cent of all federal tax revenue… Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and finance minister Chrystia Freeland have sought refuge in progressive populism with their plan to expand the capital gains tax. But the sustainable policy choice would be to put those two points back on the GST.

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Appointing judges will not fix the criminal delay problem

Saturday, April 20th, 2024

Numerous zero-tolerance policies, which forbid dropping certain categories of charges in exchange for mediation, restitution or non-criminal sanctions put an additional burden on the system. Minor matters, which could be diverted out of the criminal justice system with non-criminal resolutions, are treated the same as serious ones… The criminal delay problem will not be solved by judicial appointments, as delay is a result of the policies and procedures administering an overburdened criminal justice system.

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Federal government goes big on housing—is it enough?

Wednesday, April 17th, 2024

2024 federal budget makes biggest investments in housing, care economy in generations with its second-to-last budget before an election… “This government has done more for housing than previous, more recent federal governments…” it will impose a higher tax on capital gains above $250,000 a year… “While the pharmacare program is still quite limited in scope… Combined with dental care, the confidence and supply agreement has driven major changes in the health care landscape in a very short period of time.”

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Fiscal folly in Ontario: New report reveals a cheapskate province

Tuesday, April 16th, 2024

In 2022-23, Ontario spent $3,251 less per person on public programs compared to the average of the other provinces… to reach the Canadian average, we would have to spend close to 27 per cent more on programs than we do now… On the revenue side, Ontario raises $4,033 a year less per person than the average of the other provinces… we would have to increase our total revenues this year by 32 per cent to be average.

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Democracy Is Under Siege Globally. Canada Is Being Tested

Monday, April 8th, 2024

Finkelstein preached that you didn’t need a vision to win in politics, just good polling that revealed what people were against. Once that was established, the goal became tying the unpopular thing — immigration, carbon tax, inflation — to a flesh and blood political “enemy.” … The idea was to avoid talking about your own positions and policies, the better to demonize your opponent. The objective was not to sell yourself but rather to destroy your opponent…  repeating simplistic slogans… “Axe the tax.” “Not worth the price.” “Everything is broken.” 

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Court strikes down most of Ontario’s Mike Harris-era anti-panhandling law

Wednesday, April 3rd, 2024

Most of Ontario’s bans on panhandling in public places… have been struck down by a Toronto judge as unconstitutional… While finding that the ban on squeegeeing and panhandling in roadways should be upheld, Centa struck down all other prohibitions on soliciting donations in public, including from people near public toilets, payphones, ATMs, taxi stands and public transit stops, as well as on transit vehicles and in parking lots. 

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Justin Trudeau offers provinces billions of dollars for housing — but with strings attached

Tuesday, April 2nd, 2024

… $5 billion — will be tied to provinces promising to meet certain conditions, among them to allow multiplex townhouses and multi-unit apartments…. “It’s off the table for us,” Ford said last month. “We’re going to build homes, single-dwelling homes, townhomes, that’s what we’re focused on.” … The remaining $1 billion of the $6-billion infusion for housing infrastructure is to be directed to municipalities to address “urgent” infrastructure needs that directly create new housing

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With its 2024 budget, the Ford government is asking you to trust it. You shouldn’t

Thursday, March 28th, 2024

… it’s one thing to announce billions in new health-care spending… It’s another to admit that 1.3 per cent growth is below inflation and nowhere near enough to sustain public health care in the province, let alone sufficiently expand it. It’s another still to admit that all this program spending amounts, on balance, to real-dollar cuts… The government is going all-in on highways and roads — with a few nods to the poor suckers stuck taking inadequate, crumbling public transportation. 

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