The subsidy table is set, and actors and writers will dine

The CRTC has backed away from a 21st-century funding model for the creation of Canadian content. We'll all be poorer as a result

The subsidy table is set, and actors and writers will dineThe leaders of Canada’s creative rebellion have emerged victorious after two years of struggle. That means consumers will almost certainly pay more for years to come for their much-loved Canadian television content. The news came just prior to the Labour Day weekend. The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) issued a decision confirming that it…

Understanding the downward trend in unionization 

In B.C., it's a matter of industrial change, technological innovation, and the increased role of self-employment and small businesses

Understanding the downward trend in unionization The arrival of another Labour Day provided an opportunity to reflect on the place of trade unions in our economy. The unionization rate – sometimes called union density – measures the share of employees in the workforce who belong to a union. In B.C., the rate has dropped significantly in recent decades. The trend has…

Powerful government unions weaken the economy

While the U.S. is curtailing the strength of such unions, Canadian government finances are stretched by the cost of public-sector workers

Powerful government unions weaken the economyAmerican taxpayers and workers won a big victory recently, with the United States Supreme Court ruling 5-4 in Janus versus American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) that government employees not part of a union could not be forced to pay union dues. Previously, government employees in 22 states were forced to pay…

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…

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…

Can B.C. climb back to the education mountaintop?

For almost 20 years, the government has been at war with the teaching profession. New contract talks can change that

Can B.C. climb back to the education mountaintop?British Columbia’s educational system is one of the best in the world, according to documents published by the Conference Board of Canada and the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA). A BBC article referred to Canada as “An Educational Superpower” and British Columbia even ranks ahead of all other Canadian provinces. Yet B.C. schools are…

Looking back to gain perspective on higher education

Time to abandon the factory-model, cheap-labour practices of colleges; time to push back against thoughtcrime; and to celebrate Precilla Veigas

Looking back to gain perspective on higher educationThe new year asks us to look back before we can move forward. For post-secondary educators in Ontario, two problems of the last year deserve careful reflection as we enter 2018. The disastrous college strike sits at the top of the list. In October, part-time instructors at Ontario’s 24 public colleges went on strike to…

The battle against Airbnb flies in the face of freedom of choice

Everyday people who want to make money from their homes are opposed by unions protecting their members from competition

The battle against Airbnb flies in the face of freedom of choice“There’s no place for the state in the bedrooms of the nation,” Pierre Trudeau, then justice minister of Canada, famously said in 1967. Fifty years later, this statement is no longer true. People who are straight, gay, transgendered or otherwise can’t necessarily get a room for the night from anyone willing to rent. No, when…

Denying DeVos a welcome simply punishes American children

Petty Ontario politicians were outraged that U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos planned a visit to Ontario to meet with educators

Denying DeVos a welcome simply punishes American childrenPolitics shouldn't interfere with efforts to improve the education of countless children. But don't try to explain that to a large group of politicians and educators in Ontario. The Program for International  Student Assessment (PISA) gathers data highlighting worldwide test scores of 15-year-old students in math, science and reading. It's a useful tool in assessing…

NAFTA negotiations: Canada has it backwards on worker choice

Worker choice laws encourage unions to be more accountable to their members, and contribute to a stronger economy and labour market

NAFTA negotiations: Canada has it backwards on worker choiceBy Charles Lammam and Hugh MacIntyre The Fraser Institute The North American Free Trade Agreement negotiations have put the spotlight on a number of critical issues, including Canada's wrong-headed insistence that the U.S. limit workers' rights to choose to financially support labour unions. The United States is Canada’s most important trade partner, with the livelihood of many…

Liberals’ bill usurps democratic rights of Canadian workers

To empower workers and promote democratic principles, MPs should maintain the requirement that unions be certified by a secret ballot vote

Liberals’ bill usurps democratic rights of Canadian workersBy Charles Lammam and Hugh MacIntyre The Fraser Institute Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government and the Senate are clashing over Bill C-4, which, among other things, is intended to change how workers decide whether to approve a union as their representative. The government introduced the bill in 2016 with the aim of ending mandatory secret ballot voting as…

Teacher’s ‘me too’ clause puts Alberta in a fiscal squeeze

The stakes in collective bargaining sessions remain high. Alberta faces a $10.3-billion budget deficit with more big deficits planned

Teacher’s ‘me too’ clause puts Alberta in a fiscal squeezeBy Ben Eisen and Angela MacLeod The Fraser Institute Alberta Premier Rachel Notley’s government recently reached a tentative short-term agreement with the Alberta Teachers’ Association. The deal must still be ratified. According to news reports, the union accepted a salary freeze. That may leave some Albertans thinking teachers won’t get any raises. It’s not quite that simple.…