What do environmentalists have against the world’s poor?

They’re only preventing oil and gas products from getting to economies that need them the most

What do environmentalists have against the world’s poor?The last few years have not been good for pipeline projects in Canada. The Keystone XL pipeline continues to be plagued by delays, TransCanada made big news by axing the Energy East pipeline and Kinder Morgan has cut spending on the critical Trans Mountain expansion project to protect its shareholders. After each pipeline setback, oil…

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,…

Manitoba Hydro’s ‘persuasion money’ symptom of a greater problem

It has become commonplace to seek large monetary settlements to allow resource development to proceed

Manitoba Hydro’s ‘persuasion money’ symptom of a greater problemEvery member of the Manitoba Hydro board, except Conservative MLA Cliff Graydon, resigned on March 21, 2018, over a dispute with Manitoba Premier Brian Pallister. According to Pallister, the board resigned because the province won’t agree to pay $67.5-million to the Manitoba Metis Federation to smooth the process for the Minnesota-Manitoba transmission line. The outgoing…

Entertainment as diversity propaganda

Television has taken it upon itself to correct social wrongs. But it doesn't fairly represent the mosaic of our society

Entertainment as diversity propagandaTelevision programs not only entertain, they also influence our ideas about society and culture. These messages aren’t meant to solely and accurately reflect social reality – they’re also meant to shape that reality. People and their actions and opinions are presented as if they’re typical and to be emulated. These programs offer a view of…

Unions can help teachers resist pointless education fads

Being on the front lines, teachers must implement the latest fads. Then they get blamed when the fads crash and burn

Unions can help teachers resist pointless education fadsThe primary responsibility of teachers’ unions is to represent their members. This includes advocating for better wages, opposing unfair working conditions and ensuring that all teachers receive due process when their jobs are in jeopardy. Obviously, these are the very basic issues. Unions can do something else that would be of immense benefit to their…

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…

Are we really all on treaty land?

The phrase ‘you are now on treaty land’ is part of a slick marketing campaign with clear financial goals

Are we really all on treaty land?I recently attended an event that began with an announcement that “you are now on treaty land.” By now, we’re all familiar with this new way of starting public functions. It stems from a recommendation from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC). The claim is that such announcements will be a step in the direction…

Electric cars won’t save the world but they will destroy lives

Cobalt miners in the Congo, which has about 60% of the world’s known cobalt reserves, work for no salary and on a good day make $3 for what they finds. Deaths and injuries are common

Electric cars won’t save the world but they will destroy livesAnyone who says electric cars will save the world is dreaming. The adoption of electric cars over the next 20 years will barely shave a single per cent from the world’s greenhouse gas emissions. Meanwhile, the batteries that power these cars rely on a nightmarish swath of human devastation. Most electric car buyers who pride…

How we ignore the complexity and moral ambiguity related to residential schools

We won't find reconciliation until we're willing to examine the truth in all its nuances and subtleties

How we ignore the complexity and moral ambiguity related to residential schoolsIn November 2016, I attended a national gathering in Toronto organized by Indspire, a truly worthwhile national body that promotes and assists with the improvement of education quality and success among Indigenous youth. I was presenting a workshop on the value of bringing dramatic activities into classes such as math and science, to engage students…

How to get high-performance government

The private sector can help revolutionize government services by improving productivity, cutting costs and introducing new ideas

How to get high-performance governmentAmen to the ideas offered in It’s Time for High-Performance Government, written by Howard Risher and William Wilder and published in 2017. But how do we bring about high-performance government? The authors say it’s not about efficiency, it’s about engaging workers. And on that score, government is 30 years behind the curve. The 1990s began…

What global warming? How about global cooling

Levying carbon tax will just cool the Earth's climate more than it already is

What global warming? How about global coolingIt’s been a long winter. I should know. I’m a former climate research scientist at Environment Canada. And I was an expert reviewer for the United Nations’ International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and its 2007 Climate Change Report. The wintry weather held its grip over most of Canada well into April, from Vancouver to St.…

Balancing Indigenous claims of institutional discrimination

If we go beyond the increasingly shrill voices, we can find stories of compassion and equality

Balancing Indigenous claims of institutional discriminationWe keep hearing about the negative ways that institutions treat Indigenous people. It’s a perception that needs to be challenged. Think of what has been said during the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada, the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls, about the ’60s scoop, and at the trials into the…

Intemperance and intolerance in campus culture clashes

Students of the snowflake generation feel empowered to videotape, confront and swarm professors with whom they disagree

Intemperance and intolerance in campus culture clashesI must confess to a crime. Many years ago, when I was still in my 20s, I was enjoying a late-night non-alcoholic beverage with an old friend from my high school days. Our talk turned to the teachers in our adolescence, some of whom we revered, some of whom we despised. The memory of one…

The modern quest for equality sacrifices freedom

In societies where economic equality exists, individual liberty is highly restricted. Communism is the perfect example

The modern quest for equality sacrifices freedomEquality is one of the hallowed values of the post-Enlightenment west. It's celebrated in the French revolutionary slogan, “Liberty, Equality, Fraternity,” and in the American Declaration of Independence, which asserts that it is “self-evident” that “all men are created equal,” as well as that all men have “inalienable Rights” such as “Liberty.” The Canadian Charter of…
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