Ottawa’s ‘innovation budget’ unlikely to spark innovation

Handing out taxpayer money in corporate welfare takes resources away from other areas that could be the source of future innovation

Ottawa’s ‘innovation budget’ unlikely to spark innovationBy Charles Lammam and Hugh MacIntyre The Fraser Institute A key theme of the recent federal budget was innovation. The word “innovation” appears 261 times in the 280-page budget document. However, identifying themes and making them work are two different things. Innovation is certainly an important driver of economic growth and prosperity. But Ottawa’s current approach – doling…

New Brunswick HST increase outweighs spending cuts five to one

Raising taxes to pay for more spending isn't working; new jobs aren't being created and subsidies to add workers can't be sustained

New Brunswick HST increase outweighs spending cuts five to oneNew Brunswick Treasury Board Minister Roger Melanson has a tough job as the province's workhorse on tax and spending. But his policies don't create the economic growth the province needs. Melanson was finance minister until early June. His budgets increased taxes on personal and corporate income. More recently, the government hiked the harmonized sales tax…

We have to stop throwing public money at corporate Canada

Almost inevitably, we don't get value from taxpayer-funded ventures

We have to stop throwing public money at corporate CanadaCanadian governments regularly fund corporate ventures, but it is invariably money poorly spent. Bombardier Inc. received its first federal subsidy of $36.9 million back in 1966 from Prime Minister Lester Pearson’s governing Liberals. The Montreal-headquartered company has since received Industry Canada funding of more $1.1 billion, plus another $1.1 billion that the federal agency poured into…

Electric cars still not ready for prime time

Electric cars are nothing but taxpayer subsidized toys for the 1 percenters

Electric cars still not ready for prime timeTwenty years ago, in May, 1995, I had my first op-ed published in a major newspaper, the Los Angeles Times. The title was Pull the Plug on the Electric Car Mandate. In that column I pointed out that battery-powered (non-hybrid) electric vehicles (EVs) were not ready for wide-scale adoption for a variety of reasons, including…

Quebec maple syrup cartel finds itself in a sticky situation

Its attempt to maintain high prices is leading to more international competition

Quebec maple syrup cartel finds itself in a sticky situationMaple syrup is a sticky business in Quebec. The establishment of a government-sanctioned cartel in 2000, which was later backed by a stringent quota-based system in 2004, compels over 7,000 producers to sell high volumes of the golden syrup. About 700 small farms are exempt from this system, and can sell directly to the public.…

The sobering reality behind business incentives

Being out-gunned in the incentives game can carry a heavy cost

The sobering reality behind business incentivesRecent news stories from both sides of the Canada-U.S. border highlight the growing role of business incentives and “subsidies” in shaping the climate for corporate location and expansion decisions. The big three U.S. automobile producers are in the midst of downgrading their presence in Ontario as they build new plants in various American states as…