The primary function of U.S. presidential primaries

The process should help uncover the blemishes in a candidate – providing the other choices shine through

The primary function of U.S. presidential primariesJeb Bush recently suggested that someone ought to run against U.S. President Donald Trump in next year’s presidential primaries. It would, in Bush’s estimation, be good for the Republican Party. The underlying logic is simple. Rather than being a real Republican, Trump is an interloper who executed the political equivalent of a hostile business takeover.…

Canada is squandering its intangible future

The digital economy is underpinned by a new class of non-physical assets. Why aren’t we investing in them?

Canada is squandering its intangible futureCanada is in danger of becoming a tenant nation, according to a recent Public Policy Forum report written by Sean Speer and Robert Asselin. Speer and Asselin describe a post-industrial Canada falling into a modern form of dependency where, although we generate world-class innovation, we lack essential infrastructure and/or skills to commercialize it. We’re simply…

Opioids are killing Canadians in the thousands

Abstinence-based treatment is ineffective. We need to invest heavily in harm reduction strategies

Opioids are killing Canadians in the thousandsBy Sen. Jane Cordy and Sen. Raymonde Gagné “I wasn’t born to be a drug addict,” said a brave member of the audience at our recent open caucus meeting in the Senate on the Opioid Crisis in Canada. He told us of his struggle with drug addiction over two decades. His closing words hung in…

Checking out on checkout charity

Customers face making a quick decision and without enough information. Can grocers fix this process?

Checking out on checkout charityMost of us have been asked to donate to charity at the checkout counter, especially at a grocery store. A dollar here, two dollars there adds up. The practice started years ago but appears to be growing. It’s estimated that more $35 million is raised by simply asking Canadians to donate at the cash register.…

Wilson-Raybould’s next political home?

The former Liberal cabinet minister doesn't fit the Conservative mould, nor does she belong with the NDP. So how about the Green Party?

Wilson-Raybould’s next political home?On April 2, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau tossed former cabinet ministers Jody Wilson-Raybould and Jane Philpott from the Liberal caucus. Their cabinet resignations on principle and subsequent removal from caucus two months into the SNC-Lavalin controversy appear to be unprecedented in Canadian politics. Wilson-Raybould and Philpott haven’t determined what they’ll do next – or at…

Mining permit waits hamper Canadian development

Exploration is the critical first stage in mining development. Yet many provinces don't meet their own guidelines

Mining permit waits hamper Canadian developmentEvery year, the Fraser Institute publishes a survey of senior mining company executives that assesses policy environments around the world and the mineral potential of jurisdictions. Those two components are used to create an investment attractiveness index. One thing miners repeatedly tell us is that they’re concerned about obtaining exploration permits: how long does it…

SNC-Lavalin reminds us that big government invites big scandals

If we want fewer scandals, we must scale back government to limit the temptation to indulge in scandalous behaviour

SNC-Lavalin reminds us that big government invites big scandalsThe SNC-Lavalin scandal, which continues to dominate headlines across Canada, has many moving parts. It’s hard to disentangle everything so as to assign blame. But the situation provides an important lesson that seemingly many have forgot: big government invites big scandals. Political power can be misused for personal gain. It can be wielded in ways…

Steer clear of the Big Money Club when crafting national pharmacare

Prescription drug policy in Canada ought to be decided in the interest of Canadians, not based on the power of industry sector lobbies

Steer clear of the Big Money Club when crafting national pharmacare“Canadians face some of the highest prescription drug prices in the world,” admitted the federal government when announcing the interim report from its Advisory Council on the Implementation of National Pharmacare. If Canadians hoped this report would provide details on how a national pharmacare program might be implemented and funded, they only got a taste.…

Joey Smallwood’s campaign to transform Newfoundland

Force-feeding economic modernization is a tricky business, even for a Father of Confederation

Joey Smallwood’s campaign to transform NewfoundlandAfter leading the 1940s movement to bring Newfoundland into Confederation, Joey Smallwood went on to win six consecutive elections and served as the province’s premier for just shy of 23 years. It’s not the longest run for a provincial premier – Nova Scotia’s George Murray, Alberta’s Ernest Manning and Ontario’s Oliver Mowat edge Smallwood on…