Trans Mountain pipeline will benefit Canada – at a very high price

Nationalizing the project is far from ideal. It’s an admission that Canada’s regulatory approval process is profoundly broken

Trans Mountain pipeline will benefit Canada – at a very high priceLast week, Finance Minister Bill Morneau announced that the federal government will buy the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project for $4.5 billion. The government plans to construct the pipeline through a Crown corporation, with an expectation of selling it or otherwise transferring ownership in the future. The project will nearly triple the capacity to move…

Alberta sinks deeper into a sea of red ink

The more the government spends on servicing its debt, the less is left over for priorities that Albertans value such as health care

Alberta sinks deeper into a sea of red inkBy Steve Lafleur and Ben Eisen The Fraser Institute When people think of the long lost “Alberta Advantage,” they often think first about the province’s tax advantage over other provinces. Specifically, the 10 per cent single rate personal and corporate income taxes that prevailed until 2015. But Alberta enjoyed another fiscal advantage – all other…

Canadians pay the price for unnecessary Crown corporations

With more than $1 trillion locked in underperforming assets, Crown ownership is a hugely important issue for public policy debate

Canadians pay the price for unnecessary Crown corporationsThere has long been a public policy battle over government’s role in running enterprises. Strangely, that battle was not settled in the 1980s and ’90s when many state-owned firms were ‘privatized,’ since Canadian governments still own many Crown corporations. Air Canada, Canadian National Railway, Petro-Canada (now part of Suncor), PotashCorp of Saskatchewan (now part of…

The feds’ astonishing capacity for being tone-deaf

Turning the natural-gas-fired Eternal Flame on Parliament Hill into an LED version belittles our past and misunderstands our future

The feds’ astonishing capacity for being tone-deafAs there’s a spectrum in politics, so too is there one in moronics. Moronics is, of course, the parallel dimension of politics – except that on the moronics spectrum, position is not measured by degrees of left or right perspectives but rather from thinking that ranges from benignly foolish to flabbergastingly stupid. Politicians and bureaucracy…

Ottawa’s rules make health care worse

We’ve seen decades of policy paralysis, with provinces constantly under threat of penalty for exploring policy options

Ottawa’s rules make health care worseBy Bacchus Barua and Nadeem Esmail The Fraser Institute What makes health care in our country uniquely Canadian? It’s certainly not the goal to ensure universal access to care regardless of ability to pay. That goal is shared by at least 28 other high-income countries around the world. It’s certainly not that our universal health-care…

Federal government should sell EDC before risks get too high

The Crown lender plays in an international vipers’ nest, so controversy and risk may be inevitable

Federal government should sell EDC before risks get too highExport Development Canada (EDC), a Crown lending corporation, faces controversy for funding Turquoise Hill Resources. The mining firm allegedly used offshore entities to minimize the taxes it pays, including to Canada. EDC’s $1-billion-plus loan to Turquoise Hill represents nearly 1.5 per cent of the lender’s assets. EDC is also trying to repossess a Bombardier executive…

Stephen Goldsmith transformed how cities should operate

The former Indianapolis mayor demonstrated how to improve service and cut costs – and taxes

Stephen Goldsmith transformed how cities should operateWho is the greatest champion in the history of Indianapolis? Most would say Peyton Manning, the superstar quarterback who led the National Football League’s Colts to Super Bowl victory. Hockey buffs might offer Wayne Gretzky, who played his first eight games of pro hockey in the Indiana capital for the Indianapolis Racers. Speaking of racers,…

Privatization only way to help Manitoba Hydro – and the province

The badly managed Crown corporation put a whole province at risk of austerity and diminished economic opportunities

Privatization only way to help Manitoba Hydro – and the provinceAppeals to sentiment and other emotions won’t make Manitoba Hydro financially viable. Manitobans can’t wish away the debacle that cost the utility, and all Manitobans, billions of dollars. The problem started years ago and it will probably take decades to get out of the mess. Attempts at northern development and providing aid to Indigenous communities…

Public library is where democracy, learning and inspiration meet

A good public library provides an easy access point for any journey of discovery and a place to find directions when one feels lost

Public library is where democracy, learning and inspiration meetBritish writer Doris Lessing said, “A public library is the most democratic thing in the world. What can be found there has undone dictators and tyrants.” I have to admit I had forgotten what a wonderful and amazing place a public library is until I brought a group of students to my local library for…

Private care is an essential part of an effective health system

We should stop demonizing private clinics – and the patients who need them – and recognize that they're part of the solution

Private care is an essential part of an effective health systemLast month, on the heels of a new threat from the British Columbia government to fine doctors who accept private payment for treatment already covered by the government-run health-care system, a trial – initiated more than seven years ago by a private Vancouver clinic led by Dr. Brian Day – resumed. Day, a former head…