Trudeau fiddles while Canada burns

Canada is becoming a balkanized union of mini-fiefdoms at the mercy of Big Environment and narrow provincial interests

Trudeau fiddles while Canada burnsJustin Trudeau needs to get his priories straight. He's supposed to be the prime minister of Canada, not just another Instagram-friendly international celebrity. Burning issues on the home front need urgent federal attention and a sound hand on the tiller. But Trudeau chooses this moment to fly tens of thousands of kilometres across the world…

UCP: go back to school on proposed education reforms

The Alberta party’s proposal to increase funding for independent schools is unlikely to improve education in Alberta

UCP: go back to school on proposed education reformsBy Angela MacLeod and Jason Clemens The Fraser Institute Alberta’s United Conservative Party (UCP) recently released a host of policy proposals in advance of its annual general meeting in May. They included proposed reforms in education that are unlikely to achieve their goals and could make things worse. The proposals presume that Alberta’s kindergarten-to-Grade-12 education system needs…

Turning Alberta’s inactive wells back into assets

Part 3 of a six-part series: ReGenerate Alberta wants to seize a business opportunity and answer a social challenge all at once

Turning Alberta’s inactive wells back into assetsAlberta has a skeleton in its closet no one really wants to talk about. Even when we do, the bone rattling isn’t necessarily good talk. The problem is Alberta’s steadily-growing ranks of aging oil and gas assets that haven't been properly readied for (permanent) retirement. The liability those aging assets represent has burgeoned steadily over recent…

How do we close the widening gap between Alberta and B.C.?

Part 1: The wine versus oil showdown in the West has exposed some fundamental differences – but it's nothing other generations haven't seen

How do we close the widening gap between Alberta and B.C.?There was only one other car at the Earls Cove ferry terminal last week as I headed home to Powell River. It was a brand new Jeep with a white-and-red Alberta licence plate grinning from the rear bumper. I say grinning because on my part of the Sunshine Coast, you rarely see an old beater…

The Alberta disadvantage: tax rates drive away investors

Unfortunately, to bolster Alberta’s tax competitiveness will require meaningful action to repair the province’s once sterling finances

The Alberta disadvantage: tax rates drive away investorsIt’s time for Alberta to work towards regaining its former tax advantage. Until recently, the province was known for having the lowest personal and corporate income tax rates in Canada. In fact, in 2014 Alberta had the lowest combined federal/provincial top personal and corporate income taxes of any jurisdiction in Canada or the United States.…

Building bridges of trust to energy decision-making

Part 2 of a six-part series: Positive Energy is one of the key entities capable of constructively shaping the way Canadians understand and discuss energy issues

Building bridges of trust to energy decision-makingCanada's energy scene desperately needs a pracademy: a place where theory meets practice; where dialogue is robust and respectful; where ideas become reality and find purpose in everyday life. It’s a place where practitioners and academics put their heads together in a powerful ‘four-D’ combination of idea development, discussion, decisions and deployment. So what would an…

Canada paying the price for pipeline intransigence

Increasingly, the U.S. will compete with Canada for oil export markets, while more of its domestic needs are met by its own producers

If Canada’s governments won’t push to get pipeline projects built, Canadians will be the poorer for it. Canada’s overwhelming dependence on one market for its oil and gas exports comes with a serious price tag. Canadian Western Select crude oil sells at a substantially lower price than oil from other jurisdictions, such as West Texas…

The enduring legacy of maverick media baron Jim Shaw

A hard-nosed businessman, he made a brilliant cable territory swap, competed ferociously with Telus and pulled Global television from the Canwest inferno

The enduring legacy of maverick media baron Jim ShawFew occasions better illustrated the cultural divide between the world of the western bottom-up entrepreneur and that of Ottawa’s top-down public service bureaucracy than when Jim Shaw and Konrad von Finckenstein crossed swords in a hearing room. There, front and centre of the raised platform bearing commissioners, would be the multilingual Von Finckenstein, a six-foot-something-awesome…

The art of healing should include art

Sometimes it’s not enough to heal the body. Art also has a role in health care. But funding for programs that bring art to patients is in short supply in Alberta

The art of healing should include artFor centuries, art has been used in healing ceremonies, although the formal art therapy profession has only been recognized for the past several decades. The history of art in hospitals dates back to the Renaissance, yet we still too often consider art an add-on to healing. That's changing rapidly. Art is becoming prominent as an adjunct…

Children with disabilities data out of date

We lack critical information on the diverse and often unmet needs of Canadian children with disabilities, as well as the out-of-pocket costs paid by families

Children with disabilities data out of dateBy Stephanie Dunn and Jennifer Zwicker University of Calgary “The true measure of a nation’s standing is how well it attends to its children, including their health, safety, material security, education and socialization, and their sense of being loved, valued and included in the families and societies into which they are born,” according to UNICEF.…