Get ready for a greener but poorer and slower economy

As the world’s fastest growing economies expand fossil fuels usage, carbon dioxide emissions, jobs and growth, Canada is going the opposite direction

Get ready for a greener but poorer and slower economyCanadians have generally accepted that carbon pricing is necessary to save the planet. But as taxes and consumer costs rise, promised green jobs fail to materialize and few others in the world seem serious about staying the course, it’s time for a rethink. Rising population and prosperity in the developing world will grow global demand…

Just who’s the bully when it comes to minimum wage hikes?

Government generally has little or no understanding of franchising, how food distribution forces play out or even simply how small businesses operate

Just who’s the bully when it comes to minimum wage hikes?Dramatically increasing minimum wages in the food industry is irresponsible and even reckless. On Jan. 1, Ontario’s minimum wage increased by 22 per cent, to $14 an hour. It will go to $15 on Jan. 1, 2019. That’s almost a 32 per cent increase in 12 months. Other provinces, such as Alberta and B.C., will follow…

Is it time for major tax reform in Canada?

It would be more prudent to make ongoing in-depth analysis of various facets of the tax system a full-time activity of the Department of Finance

Is it time for major tax reform in Canada?On the same day that Finance Minister Bill Morneau clarified the federal government’s proposals to limit “income sprinkling” as a way for high-income owners of private companies to reduce their taxes, the Senate finance committee released its report recommending that all his tax changes should be scrapped.  Instead, the committee recommended the government undertake an…

The most irrational, damaging or downright dumb beliefs of 2017

A look back at 2017 shows far too many instances in Canada where we got it all wrong

The most irrational, damaging or downright dumb beliefs of 2017For my first column of the New Year, I’ve dipped into my collection of irrational, damaging or downright dumb happenings in 2017. The year saw major breakthroughs in the use of genetically-modified human cells to treat diseases, including retinal dystrophy and blood cancer. Human genetic re-engineering is an emerging science but there has been little…

The enduring legacy of maverick media baron Jim Shaw

A hard-nosed businessman, he made a brilliant cable territory swap, competed ferociously with Telus and pulled Global television from the Canwest inferno

The enduring legacy of maverick media baron Jim ShawFew occasions better illustrated the cultural divide between the world of the western bottom-up entrepreneur and that of Ottawa’s top-down public service bureaucracy than when Jim Shaw and Konrad von Finckenstein crossed swords in a hearing room. There, front and centre of the raised platform bearing commissioners, would be the multilingual Von Finckenstein, a six-foot-something-awesome…

Staying ahead of threats to cyber security

A not-so-distant future could see blockchain automatically put in place a retaliatory tariff or assemble a dispute resolution panel

Staying ahead of threats to cyber securityBy Brennen Schmidt ALEUS Technology Group and Allan Bonner Troy Media columnist Studying and working in the area of cyber security keeps us alert – and as things rapidly change, alertness is ever more important. It was good to hear of the scanning machine that makes a digital copy of all receipts for later viewing…

Playing the game of business to win

Do you come to work to just put in time or are you trying to achieve a goal? You need a clear vision, a simple approach, lots of communication and determination

Playing the game of business to winAl Erricson was my basketball coach in 1982 – he’s learned a lot about coaching since then. If only Al knew then what he knows now, we might have won a game or two. What Al knows, and every business owner and manager should know, is that being successful is not all about skills. It…

Taxing meat is an unpalatable proposition

Arguing that meat is the new tobacco is sensationalist nonsense, since tobacco is not essential to life and food is. Let the market evolve

Taxing meat is an unpalatable propositionImposing a sin tax on foods that are deemed environmentally detrimental seems to be gaining support. But little can be accomplished by taxing meat. For some, eating meat is considered a sin and therefore meat products should be taxed, like alcohol and tobacco. A new report published recently by a group called Farm Animal Investment Risk…

An Alberta-made high-seas pollution solution

Part 2 of a 10-part series: Taking the dirty out of dirty oil and cleaning up the world's oceans at the same time

An Alberta-made high-seas pollution solutionWhat do beer, bitumen and greenhouse gas emissions have in common? That would be Neil Camarta, founder of Field Upgrading. Camarta spent most of his engineering career building conventional upgraders, which emit sulphur dioxide and other noxious GHG pollutants into the atmosphere. Now he’s teamed up with the Coors Brewing family and Alberta Innovates to commercialize a simple…

How to supercharge your success in 2018

Tips to make the most out of what you offer, including keeping a success journal, staying ahead of knowledge trends and broadening your interests

How to supercharge your success in 2018Last year, I gave a seminar on leadership presence for the executive team of a high-tech company in northern California. The next day, the president of the company phoned and said: “I have an administrative assistant who is the brightest, most creative person I've worked with. The problem is, we’re relocating and she can't move…