More cynical commentators in Ottawa dismissed the newly minted Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development and Minister of Science portfolios as a simple rebrand of pre-existing cabinet posts. In some ways, that was an understandable reaction. After all the new Liberal government was widely criticized by opposition parties for being heavy on style and light on substance.
This weekend, the NDP is meeting in Edmonton to decide their direction moving forward. Eugene Levy once complained about filming a season of SCTV in Edmonton because "It's Edmonton." While I'm sure it's a great city, this is a party who is dreading at the Big E. The election of the past year saw an early lead blown, notable key members of the party lose their seats in the House of Commons, and a third place finish for Tom Mulcair's rookie federal election run. As the NDP head to the Gateway to the North, it's time to begin paving the highway towards the future.
If you're in the midst of filing this year's tax return, why should you be thinking about next year's return? Well, as I wrote earlier this month, a lot of families are coming in and being caught off guard because the Enhanced UCCB, combined with the disappearance of the amount for children, is putting people in a position where they may owe tax this year.
Anyone who signs up with the Liberals (with no membership fee involved) will have the right to take part in policy development, nomination meetings, conventions and future elections of the leader. The Conservatives have gone in the opposite direction to the Liberals with their new $25 membership fee that has to be paid by cheque or credit card. In effect the Conservatives have managed to make themselves more exclusive rather than inclusive. The Liberals have broadened their tent while the Conservatives shrank theirs. Time will tell who made the right move.
Across its 4,440-km route, the Canadian provides an essential service to many communities without other public transportation options. It attracts large numbers of international tourists to the Canadian Rockies and communities like Jasper, Alberta. It is a globally-recognized symbol of Canada, and graces our $10 bank notes.
I was in Debre Libanos, Ethiopia, visiting family, when the conversation turned to Canadian politics. My uncle reflected on the Canada he understood and remembered. This included having an international perspective, respect for international institutions such as the United Nations, and a Canadian society that acted like a neighbour when disasters struck.
We decided early on that, while we would of course ensure we had messaging towards youth across the country, and support young campaigners in constituencies nationwide, our focus had to be tailored to where we could be most effective. We decided to focus our efforts organizing constituencies with campuses.
Ever since Federal Finance Minister Bill Morneau announced Monday that the federal deficit would top $18.4 billion, all the familiar voices of right wing commentators, Bay Street analysts and Conservative politicians have made their all-too predictable calls for budget cuts and curtailed spending. They couldn't be more wrong. Now, in fact, is the time for some strategic spending to get the economy going, even if it means increasing the federal deficit when the budget is handed down on March 22.
On February 15, 2016, I went to a Bernie Sanders rally in Ypsilanti, Michigan. He is a hero to so many, and even if he does not get the nomination he has begun to make others advocate for what is right. He has done what so many other politicians have failed to do, get the attention of the young voter.
This generation is among the most talented, educated and globally connected ever. While some of the experiences and expectations of these young people are unique to their cohort, they have much in common with Canadian workers of all ages and backgrounds: they are looking for a way to make a difference -- be it at the local, national, or global level. The federal public service must innovate to attract more young people. We need less rigid hierarchies, fewer layers of bureaucracy, more open and transparent decision making, a culture of intelligent risk taking, more opportunity for continuous learning, and greater mobility in and out of government.
Bill C-51 is simply unCanadian: it's vague legislation that violates the human rights and freedoms which define us as a country. The Liberal government has committed to rewrite what they describe as "problematic elements" of Bill C-51 and introduce new legislation that strengthens accountability in regards to national security, balancing this with rights and freedoms.
Numbers coming from the government and political operatives should give pause to any observer. Why? Because rarely do either have the expertise or data sources to make reliable predictions. When they do, other factors come into play that skews the totals. The usual culprit is misguided optimism to demonstrate competence or distinguish from the opposition.
There is little argument that Canadians deserve a fair tax system. It is unacceptable that there be even the slightest perception that corporations and wealthy individuals can avoid tax investigations by hiring a lobbyist or high-priced tax lawyer. The minister should be demanding answers -- on behalf of all Canadians -- from her senior managers.