Albertans need to vote yes to abolishing equalization

A show of force would strengthen our hand in our fight for fairness with Ottawa

Albertans need to vote yes to abolishing equalizationTired of yelling at the TV every time you hear about how much of our money is sent out east? Well, you’re in luck. The provincial government wants you to have your say on Canada’s equalization program during the province-wide municipal elections on Oct. 18th, 2021. Premier Jason Kenney is right to embrace some direct…

Alberta’s approach to COVID-19 has been medically and tactically absurd

Playing on fears, bribing and threatening to produce compliance is unconscionable

Alberta’s approach to COVID-19 has been medically and tactically absurdI am sorry to be so frank to a man whom I admired and from whom I expected good things. I confess that in younger days, I thought of Albertans mainly as people who cornered too slowly on mountain roads. But I learned, partly from you, that I must think much more of them than…

Alberta government throwing money away on oil projects

The history of government attempting to pick winners and losers in a market-based economy is absolutely abysmal

Alberta government throwing money away on oil projectsOne of the eternal questions of public policy is: should governments get into bed with private businesses? Whether it’s called a public-private partnership, buying a controlling interest for taxpayers, investing in the technologies of tomorrow or just avoiding a business failure on our watch, the debate over whether the overall idea of government investing in…

Child-care subsidies won’t stimulate the economy

Officials need to streamline and eliminate child-care regulations

Child-care subsidies won’t stimulate the economyThe federal government has spotted another pretext to increase its intrusion in our lives: subsidized child care. Despite knowing economic lockdowns have caused massive job losses, federal officials argue that unaffordable child care impedes women from returning to the workforce. Subsidies are a shallow, top-down policy that would generate aid dependency from child-care centres and…

Bureaucrats living high off the hog at taxpayers expense

Ottawa’s public service has swelled by roughly 10,000 bureaucrats per year under Trudeau

Bureaucrats living high off the hog at taxpayers expenseCOVID-19 has shone a light on a fundamental divide within Canada: the growing government bureaucracy and those forced to pay for it. This contrast is illustrated by Statistics Canada’s latest jobs report. The private sector, including the self-employed, has shed 520,400 jobs since COVID-19 hit us, while the number of government jobs across the country…

How to wreck Alberta’s path to a balanced budget

Cave in to government employee unions during negotiations

How to wreck Alberta’s path to a balanced budgetLike boxers standing in the middle of the ring before a big fight, Alberta Premier Jason Kenney and government union bosses are in a stare-down before the big battle of 2021: government employee contract negotiations. For years, these negotiations were foregone conclusions. Premiers would talk tough and then cave. Politicians weren’t betting with their own…

Alberta must get its fiscal house in order without another oil boom

But any plan for fiscal austerity can’t ignore the elephant in the room – extraordinary health-care spending

Alberta must get its fiscal house in order without another oil boomAlberta’s debt has grown exponentially over the last decade, surging from under $10 billion in 2010 to $98 billion in 2020. The COVID-19 pandemic has set off a trap that earlier provincial administrations laid by their excessive reliance on fossil-fuel revenues. On Feb. 25, Finance Minister Travis Toews announced the province would start 2022 with…

Kenney may be down but he’s not out

His low popularity comes from his miscalculations and not from his opponents’ abilities

Kenney may be down but he’s not outAlberta Premier Jason Kenney is in some trouble. A recent opinion survey put the Opposition NDP and its leader Rachel Notley ahead of the United Conservative Party (UCP), within reach of forming a majority if a vote were held now. Kenney’s popularity has eroded during the COVID-19 crisis, even though – or perhaps because of…

How dare Kenney denigrate legitimate Alberta protests

A wise statesman doesn’t diminish the moral choices of the people he serves

How dare Kenney denigrate legitimate Alberta protestsAlberta Premier Jason Kenney recently posted on social media his reaction to protests on the steps of the legislature and GraceLife Church just west of Edmonton. Hundreds gathered at the legislature in Edmonton on April 12, including many other parts of the province. Those who know Kenney would recognize his style and tone in the…

Alberta planting the seeds for a tech boom but care required

Alongside investing and funding, the government of Alberta must emphasize entrepreneurship and keep co-operating with the private sector

Alberta planting the seeds for a tech boom but care requiredTechnology companies have emerged as clear winners during the COVID-19 pandemic. Jurisdictions without a traditional tech imprint – like Alberta – have funnelled funds to facilitate startups. That’s a good diversification strategy, but they should be careful not to veer into protectionism and favouritism. It came as no surprise that in 2020 retail sales through…
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