Archive for the ‘Governance Debates’ Category

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Doug Ford doesn’t believe in government — and that explains a lot

Thursday, January 14th, 2021

… the premier has been trying to bargain with the COVID-19 virus from day one. Do we really need more staff in long-term care? Do we really need to legislate paid sick days so contagious workers can stay home? Do we really need smaller class sizes so students and educators are safer? The answer to these questions is yes, but Ford hasn’t used the full legislative and financial powers of government to fight the virus. At every turn, he’s held back, seemingly always hoping for a better, cheaper deal… In other areas, the government has acted without hesitation…

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With a little help for his friends, Ford steals Christmas

Saturday, December 12th, 2020

The owners and directors of long-term-care (LTC) home corporations (including Mike Harris) are off the hook for liability for their well-documented shoddy operations during COVID-19. Ford’s friend and funder Charles McVety will, somewhat magically, likely get his Christian College turned into a university. His developer buddies will like Ford’s new rules for Conservation Authorities whose authority is now much diminished… Every one of these treats was snuck into omnibus bills designed to deal with the pandemic.

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Premiers call dibs on federal money before it’s all spent

Friday, December 11th, 2020

Health care is provincial jurisdiction. They can levy taxes like Ottawa. If they need more money, they could raise taxes… A lot of what Ottawa does is sending money to people or provinces. But health care? … Mr. Trudeau doesn’t want to just send cheques. He wants to say he paid for something new and specific that Canadians want. He told the premiers that Ottawa might fund better long-term care, or pharmacare.

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Spare some pity for right-wing premiers in the time of COVI

Friday, December 11th, 2020

… a global pandemic isn’t the best circumstance for invoking libertarian individualism and the all-purpose value of the private sector, then standing aside. Active government has its problems, but someone has to do something right now, not just wait for the invisible hand to generate profitable solutions… Doug Ford… more a right-wing populist than an ideological conservative… is about “the little guy,” by which he means small business owners, never their employees.

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Human rights cities: The power and potential of local government to advance economic and social rights

Thursday, December 10th, 2020

… a growing number of local governments from across the world are turning to human rights to affirm a vision of more equitable, inclusive, and sustainable communities. Such places may be broadly categorized as “human rights cities.” … we offer a few key points for cities and municipalities of all sizes to consider to protect, promote, and fulfill human rights…

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Doug Ford’s love-hate relationship with the nanny state

Saturday, November 21st, 2020

If there’s any time not to demean “the state” in utterly clichéd terms, it’s now. He’s clueless enough to unsheathe the nanny-state weapon at the very moment when governmental action is the only recourse, in a time of virtual — and literally viral — war. There is no substitute for the state in a war.

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The feds can’t make the provinces ‘do the right thing’ on the pandemic, but they can make it worth their while

Wednesday, November 18th, 2020

… it can still structure its assistance in ways that offer provinces incentives to take a tougher line… That was the idea, you’ll recall, behind the Safe Reopening Agreement: in return for $19-billion in federal dough, the provinces made certain undertakings with regard to things like testing – they were supposed to be testing 200,000 people a day by now (actual figure: roughly 50,000). Any further assistance should be contingent on provinces meeting broader standards of policy stringency – and should be withheld without it.

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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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Thanks to Quebec millennials, another referendum isn’t looming

Sunday, November 1st, 2020

… Among those age 55 and older, there is a big difference between francophone Quebeckers and people in the rest of Canada in the proportion saying their provincial government best represents their interests; among those under 40, this difference has disappeared… the differences between the outlooks of young adults in different parts of Canada have never been as small as they are today. Our historically weak transnational ties have been getting stronger under the radar.

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