You will know well from history that real change won't happen by providing more federal money with unconditional transfers.Real change will require helping provinces to shift the focus of our health system away from those who are relatively well resourced to new areas of care, such as essential pharmaceuticals and homecare.
Quite frankly I would rather have our government express ambitious goals that will stretch their capability than easily met goals. Is this not the reason they were elected? Similarly for Canadians as a whole. Why should we not have audacious and ambitious goals in our lives that challenge us every day and give us reason to get out of bed every morning fully alive and ready to do our best toward meeting the goals?
Congratulations to the Liberal Party of Canada on its spectacular victory, and egalitarian new Cabinet. Now that the campaigning is over and the real work starts, I thought I would share a few stories about some of the people in Justin Trudeau's riding of Papineau. Observers rank Papineau one of the poorest ridings in Canada. Going door to door in Park Ex, and in St Michel, I saw too many basement apartments choking with mold and mildew. Too many families crowded into small apartments. Too many qualified people with no jobs, or working in jobs well below their qualifications. The sharp poverty hit home dramatically one evening.
During the Canadian and Turkish election campaigns, leaders of the ruling parties hoped to benefit from a divided political opposition. At the front of each campaign, many voters in Canada and Turkey hoped for minority governments to fend majorities with leaders they mistrusted with too much authority.
Life in the public square is playing itself out online, only the Internet has made the square bigger, more diverse, and capable of operating in real time. With every decision our government makes (or must make), social media in particular allow us to quickly gather, share, discuss, debate, suggest and demand, effectively crowdsourcing solutions to the questions facing the nation. And by the looks of things, Canadians will have suggestions for Justin Trudeau every step of the way.
As the federal election comes to its final stage, many eyes are on Ontario. Stephen Harper has been a regular visitor in ridings that the Conservatives currently hold, giving the impression that he is focusing on keeping versus increasing seats. Justin Trudeau on the other hand, is venturing into Conservative and NDP held ridings looking for new support. Winning seats in Ontario requires some fine balancing. While there is a desire to figure out what will appeal to voters across the province, it is also a bit of a mug's game and far more challenging than it looks.
Data from UNHCR shows that only about one per cent of the world's displaced population resides in Canada. In fact, Canada has yet to meet its own targets for refugee acceptance when it comes to the current crisis, which originates primarily out of Syria and Iraq. Canadians, especially Muslim Canadians, interested in changing this status quo now have a lot more incentive to show up on October 19 to vote and do their part in the political process.
The Donald Trump phenomena in the United States reminds me of our experience in Toronto, Canada, when a so-called everyman mayor who appealed to angry populism was elected. Ford's behaviour proved to be such a distraction that much of his agenda, such as it was, stalled at every step. Ford, like Trump, loved to attack people on their appearance, ethnicity and gender. Over time, personality-driven, badly behaved leaders will get to the point of alienating all but their most ardent allies.
Reducing inequalities, if well done as per the progressive Trudeau Plan, will benefit our economy; increasing inequality -- the regressive Harper or Mulcair way -- will only harm it. A strong economy, a just society, a healthy environment: why should we have to choose? If we make the right decisions, we can better achieve all of these goals, precisely because we will not have given up on any of them. Trudeau's plan for fairness to the middle class is one of those good decisions Canadians have to make, in the interest of all.
All Canadians, regardless of their home province, want a principled federal Government that gets things done, not one that panders, not one that is reckless, and certainly not one that lowers the bar for the break-up of our country. Thomas Mulcair hopes to woo separatists into voting NDP and he's putting the healed wounds of our national unity at risk to do so. Our country is at a crossroads. After nearly a decade of Harper they are hungry for real change and a positive new course.
Living in western societies we often take our right to vote for granted. Low voter turnout can be seen across the board from municipal elections, provincial ones, and even the federal elections -- in fairness it tends to get better the higher the level of government -- and it is for lack of a better word: depressing.
Mulcair's image has been cleaned up by party strategists for the 2015 election, but we've seen enough of his behaviour and attitude over the years to make some judgement. Should Canadians judge Thomas Mulcair by his campaign image or by his character? Like any employer, Canadians need to know the man they're hiring for Canada's top job. Can Canadians trust Thomas Mulcair with being prime minister?
Demonstrating the Green Party's commitment to principled, thoughtful politics, each reason highlights a specific, deep-rooted problem and provides a long-term viable solution. The ultimate goal: build a better Canada for all Canadians, a Canada with a sustainable future grounded in responsible environmental stewardship, social justice and fiscal responsibility.
A national election is months away, but campaigning has already begun. While party leaders talk issues of economy and security, no one is asking the big question: what kind of society do we want? Canada is no longer one of the top five countries for integrating immigrants, a European think-tank announced in May. For decades, we've heard that Canada is a "just society" -- based on equality and freedom for all upheld in laws. We've built our just society, but is Canada becoming a less compassionate one?
The latest depressing revelations about the Senate make it clear that the institution cannot continue in its present form. The vast majority of Canadians now agree that reform or abolition of the Canadian Senate is overdue. It is time to bring the people of Canada into the centre of the process and directly consult Canadians on any proposal for constitutional reform through a consultative referendum.