‘Firewall’ tactics won’t do much to boost Alberta

As cathartic as it may be, it’s unclear that anything Kenney has prescribed will do much to improve the business climate in this province

‘Firewall’ tactics won’t do much to boost AlbertaManaging our own affairs is good for business. That, at least, is what Alberta’s premier would like us to believe, following a policy speech delivered to a conservative crowd in Red Deer on Saturday. But is it? It depends on how you turn the coin. Premier Jason Kenney said he was up all night writing…

Want better MLAs? Pay them more, not less

We discourage skilled and experienced people from entering elected public life, since seeking office means forgoing significant income and often involves significant sacrifice to their families

Want better MLAs? Pay them more, not lessRecently-announced pay cuts to members of Alberta’s legislature raise the important question of whether our elected representatives get paid too much or even enough. Outside of political considerations, the question of salaries is important because we link attracting talent to pay. With the new cuts, the Alberta premier will make around $167,000, cabinet ministers about…

Protecting AER protects Alberta energy industry integrity

Protecting AER protects Alberta energy industry integrityThere were days through the spring and summer when thousands of people poured into Calgary’s streets to demonstrate support for Canada's upstream oil and gas sector. There were placards, posters and T-shirts with slogans. There were chants and speeches. There was undeniable passion. They rallied to support the integrity of Canadian oil and gas –…

Alberta Energy Regulator overhaul a dangerous game

Weaken the regulatory framework at your peril. Sloppy regulation begets sloppy industrial operation. And that drives investment away

Alberta Energy Regulator overhaul a dangerous gameGrant Sprague and Bev Yee, Alberta deputy ministers of energy and environment respectively, are very capable senior bureaucrats. Here’s hoping they bring to bear all their skills for the review of the Alberta Energy Regulator. They should keep in mind that the review ought not to be the witch hunt the current political framing suggests…

Alberta’s repeal of carbon tax makes economic, environmental sense

Over the course of a single year, the carbon tax cost each Albertan $286, couples $388 and couples with two children $508

Alberta’s repeal of carbon tax makes economic, environmental senseUtopian legislators in the United States often look with rose-tinted glasses upon the Canadian approach to everything, from higher education and medical care to global warming and international affairs. Since Canadians are the ones who live with such policies, they’re more inclined to recognize their mistakes and reverse the course, as exhibited by Alberta’s carbon…

The objectivity of the non-objective columnist

Calgary Herald columnist Licia Corbella wrote a column in favour of Jason Kenney while a member of the UPC. Is this misstep a fate worse than death?

The objectivity of the non-objective columnistHaving been a columnist for more than two decades, I obviously understand this profession inside and out. Yet I’m still constantly amazed how little the average Canadian knows about column writing, even if he or she has been reading a publication’s opinion/comment section for the equivalent of a lifetime. Here’s a recent example. Sean Craig,…

Alberta workplace legislation actually harming workers

Labour regulations granting mandatory benefits simply make workers pay, through reduced wages, for those benefits

Alberta workplace legislation actually harming workersA main priority of Alberta’s United Conservative Party government, given the province’s relatively high unemployment rate over the past few years, is job creation. It’s right there in Jason Kenney’s two-line Twitter biography: “Premier of Alberta. Focused on getting Alberta back to work.” The proposed corporate tax cuts will certainly help attract business investment and…

Applying the stages-of-dying model to climate change

The change we need in half a generation is before us. Each of us can play our small part to end the cycle

Applying the stages-of-dying model to climate changeThose of us who signed up for Introductory Psychology 101 as university students were likely exposed to Dr. Elisabeth Kubler-Ross’s model on the five stages of dying and death. I admit I had to look them up again to write this. But once found, I immediately recalled struggling with their ordered sequence in a lecture…

Alberta’s minimum wage cut for teens should just be the start

As workers get older and become eligible for more pay, they often lose their jobs. That means the overall wage floor is too high

During the recent Alberta election campaign, with the province’s unemployment rate remaining stubbornly high, the now-governing United Conservative Party proposed reducing the minimum wage from $15 to $13 for workers below the age of 18. And now the government has introduced legislation to make that change, along with changes to overtime pay requirements. The benefits…

Alberta’s new government should cut energy sector taxes, rules

UCP promised to regain a competitive advantage, making the province attractive again for investors, entrepreneurs and businesses

Alberta’s new government should cut energy sector taxes, rulesBy Ashley Stedman and Elmira Aliakbari The Fraser Institute Albertans opted for change in last month’s provincial election. Now it’s time for the new government to do what it was elected to do: improve the economy. The United Conservative Party promised during the campaign to regain a competitive advantage over other jurisdictions and make the…