Proficiency in English essential to success

Without the necessary language skills, students will be left behind. But are they willing to put in the needed work?

Proficiency in English essential to successAs a new school year starts, many immigrants and young Canadians from homes where English isn’t spoken face the daunting task of learning an official language. They’ll have varying degrees of success. When an appliance failure forced me to buy a fridge, the salesman was perfectly fluent in spoken English. He described the products, answered…

Putting a price on the movement of people and goods

Introducing tolls on roads and bridges to help pay for transportation upgrades is an equitable solution to a vexing urban problem

Putting a price on the movement of people and goodsRoad rage has almost become a defining characteristic of life in and around our cities. In the best of circumstances, it’s frustrating and time consuming to drive anywhere. Throw in bad weather, construction or an accident, and it becomes nearly impossible. Why can’t something be done so we can drive unimpeded on our roads? The…

Forest fires torching a province’s economy

The long-term economic impact of the fires ravaging the British Columbia interior - including on the logging and tourism industries - will be devastating

Forest fires torching a province’s economyThe long-term economic impact of fires burning in British Columbia’s interior will be devastating. The blessing of a warm, sunny summer has turned into a curse as forest fires rage throughout much of the interior British Columbia. Weather forecasters predict ongoing warm, windy weather, so no immediate respite is expected for those trying to contain…

A 21st-century guide to career success

Our hints to help you get started on a successful career in a world of contract, short-term and part-time work and where robots are replacing humans in the workplace

A 21st-century guide to career successRoadmaps are obsolete. GPS guides us now. But there are still some things GPS can’t find, like a good career. For baby boomers, the path was simple: Stay in school, ideally through college. Get a job in a large corporation or government, and a few decades later collect a pension. The formula didn’t work for…

Canada’s next 150 years

In the face of changes and challenges, we can ensure a great future by using the hardiness, bravery and creativity that we have displayed throughout our history

Canada’s next 150 yearsThe world needs more Canada, because of what we have accomplished over the last 150 years and all that we are capable of accomplishing over the next 150 years. Over the coming years we should put aside our usual apologetic Canadian modesty and agree that the world would be a better place if more countries…

Trudeau government’s hidden tax increases flaunt democracy

The government wants to increase taxes on booze based on the Consumer Price Index, while denying the same right to revenue it provides to Canadians

Trudeau government’s hidden tax increases flaunt democracyCanadians can be smug. Our country is safe, secure, beautiful, clean and free. And we have an open, democratic government whose job it is to improve our lives. Or do we? A close look at the 2017 federal budget suggests otherwise. It’s cruel and unusual to ask ordinary citizens to go through the hundreds of…

Three steps to creating your own job

Becoming self-employed or starting a small business has some unique advantages: you can’t be laid off and there’s no ceiling on how much income you can make

Three steps to creating your own jobIf the job market doesn't satisfy your needs, maybe it’s time to create your own job. How often have we heard people say there are no jobs out there? Or the jobs are all lousy and low-paid – they don’t give you enough hours or dollars to make a decent living? Or they might be very good,…

Can B.C. put integrity and effectiveness ahead of petty politics?

Can B.C.'s newly-elected MLAs make something positive out of the minority government mess that appears to be awaiting the province?

Can B.C. put integrity and effectiveness ahead of petty politics?It's time to give advice to the newly-elected B.C. government, even if we're not sure who that will turn out to be. Right now, British Columbia doesn’t have a clear winner as a result of the May 9 election. Nor are we likely to have one for weeks – or even months. Even then, the government is likely to…

When a degree isn’t enough to get you a job

An entry-level job teaches many things you don’t learn in school: getting to work on time; getting along; dealing with deadlines and customers

When a degree isn’t enough to get you a jobCareer prospects become so discouraging for many educated young people that the British weekly magazine The Economist writes about young people who have given up looking for work and live in their parents' basement playing video games. Similarly, Canadian newspapers are publishing articles telling parents how to kick their grown children out of the house. We’re not talking…