No reason why an activist can’t be a columnist

Yes, it’s possible to be a columnist and activist. So why couldn't the Toronto Star countenance Desmond Cole and his stand on police carding?

No reason why an activist can’t be a columnistI’ve been writing columns since 1996. It’s a craft in which individuals often possess strong opinions, varied interests, articulate ideas and healthy doses of intellectual curiosity. What about activism, in the political sense of otherwise? This particular trait, which seems a logical fit, is now a matter of dispute due to the curious case of…

A tempest in a cultural appropriation teapot

For the CBC and others, a joke about cultural appropriation is more important than, you know, things like real racism

A tempest in a cultural appropriation teapotAll novelists are liars. Thieves, too. So said the late Mordecai Richler. My friend and I were in the dark at the back at the Bovine Sex Club on Queen West, waiting to see the Minneapolis punk band Off With Their Heads. My friend had just told me the story of how, years ago, he…

And so begins the reign of Fergus the Red

Our puppy follows closely in the big, scary outdoors. And he thinks he’s hurting his squeaky chew toys and whimpers

And so begins the reign of Fergus the RedThe Farmer and I have entered another phase of life. In our 10th year of marriage, as he settles into his 60s and I finish off my 40s, we are once again parents of a newborn. We recently picked up an eight-week-old golden retriever puppy. After weeks of deliberation, we decided his name is Fergus.…

What’s the big deal about volunteer work?

Our society is filled with organizations that need volunteer help. And it is both fun and ennobling working for the common good

What’s the big deal about volunteer work?I keep hearing from older volunteers that it’s getting harder to find younger folks to volunteer for civil society board work. When I tell people I’m on five boards, I often get asked, “Why do you do it?” Even my almost-95-year-old mother asks, “Do they pay you for all the volunteering you do?” I have…

Canada’s investment recession drags on

The collapse of global oil prices, coupled with weak prices in other commodity markets, a key factor behind Canada’s investment slump

Canada’s investment recession drags onWhile Canada’s economy continues to grind out positive if unspectacular gains in employment and gross domestic product (GDP), below the surface the picture is less encouraging. For several years, our economy has basically been kept afloat by free-spending consumers and overheated real estate markets. Throughout this period, export growth has been meagre and investment outside…

Show us Alberta’s plan to balance the budget

By placing its hopes on future revenue growth, the government is risking the province’s fiscal and economic health

Show us Alberta’s plan to balance the budgetBy Steve Lafleur and Ben Eisen The Fraser Institute VANCOUVER, B.C., May 18, 2017 /Troy Media/ – In a recent conference call with reporters, Alberta Finance Minister Joe Ceci said his government “has a clear plan to return [the budget] to balance.” This is news to Albertans, since the latest budget only contains estimates up to the 2018-19…

B.C.’s election: the perils of proportional representation

Green Party policies, rejected by more than 80% of B.C. voters, could be enacted because its support is required to form a government

B.C.’s election: the perils of proportional representationBy Lydia Miljan, Jason Clemens and Taylor Jackson The Fraser Institute VANCOUVER, B.C., May 17, 2017 /Troy Media/ – Former U.S. president Barack Obama popularized the phrase “teachable moment” by pointing out that events, even tragedies, are often opportunities for the public to learn more about policy. The election results in British Columbia are a teachable moment for…

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…

Ontario reopens spending tap, exposing province to more risk

Despite tabling Ontario’s first balanced operating budget in a decade, there are signs the government plans to go right back to undisciplined spending

Ontario reopens spending tap, exposing province to more riskBy Ben Eisen and Charles Lammam The Fraser Institute Premier Kathleeen Wynne’s government recently tabled Ontario’s first balanced operating budget in a decade. While it’s good to see the province finally bring its expenditures in line with revenues, there are worrying signs the government plans to go right back to the undisciplined approach that created Ontario’s…

Ontario’s basic income pilot won’t fly

An unconditional cash transfer may encourage dependency on government, and discourage people from finding work and improving their lives

Ontario’s basic income pilot won’t flyBy Charles Lammam and Hugh MacIntyre The Fraser Institute Ontario will launch a three-year basic income pilot program beginning this spring, to “better support vulnerable workers.” But the program will likely harm the people it intends to help by discouraging work and encouraging dependency on government. The program introduced by Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne's government will provide a single person…