Deeply flawed soda tax rife with unintended consequences

Evidence in other countries shows that consumption taxes don't address the root targets in meaningful ways

Deeply flawed soda tax rife with unintended consequencesBy Ashley Stedman and Jake Fuss The Fraser Institute Policy-makers and pundits have mused recently about a tax on sugar-sweetened beverages to fight obesity and other-health related issues in Canada. It’s a bad idea that should be abandoned. According to Mark Holland, Liberal MP for Ajax, Ont., a ‘soda tax’ will “push consumers away from…

Extreme weather debate buries legitimate dissent

Roger Pielke Jr. was subjected to a vicious, well-funded smear campaign for raising legitimate concerns

Extreme weather debate buries legitimate dissentPrime Minister Justin Trudeau recently said the federal carbon tax, a key pillar in his government’s climate policy, will help protect Canadians from extreme weather. “Extreme weather events are extraordinarily expensive for Canadians, our communities and our economy,” he said, citing the recent tornadoes in Ottawa and wildfires in Western Canada. “That's why we need…

Government spending must be a federal election issue

Sound fiscal policy can come from any party. Canadians need facts, not fiction and rhetoric

Government spending must be a federal election issueBy Jake Fuss, Tegan Hill and Jason Clemens The Fraser Institute As the fall federal election approaches, political commentators will bombard Canadians with sometimes misleading rhetoric. But Canadians need facts, not fiction, to make well-informed decisions. Such rhetoric undermines the public’s understanding of good policy and on one key issue, creates confusion around the size…

Barriers to competition hurt Canadians

Government-erected barriers mean firms have few incentives to improve efficiency, cut costs and satisfy consumers

Barriers to competition hurt CanadiansEconomists love competition. They tell students how competition between firms leads to lower prices and greater quality. Beyond the classroom, few dispute the benefits of competition. So why are so many Canadians unaware that governments across Canada shield close to one-third of the economy from competition? When economists speak of competition, they don’t refer only…

Green enviro-dreams based on fantasy, not science

Energy analyst Mark Mills says we're decades away from renewables providing 100% of the power that drives our economy

Green enviro-dreams based on fantasy, not scienceEnvironmental groups, including the David Suzuki Foundation, remain enamoured of renewable energy, telling followers that the “global push for cleaner, healthier energy is on. With costs dropping dramatically, renewable energy is becoming the best choice for the environment and the economy.” The Green Party of Canada is on board, touting the idea that Alberta “should be ready”…

Pipeline shortage cost Canada’s energy sector $20.6 billion in 2018

That means less investment, less job creation and ultimately less prosperity for Canadians

Pipeline shortage cost Canada’s energy sector $20.6 billion in 2018By Elmira Aliakbari and Ashley Stedman The Fraser Institute With pipeline shortages driving down the price of Canadian oil, the losses for the energy sector – and for Canada’s economy – are staggering. According to a new study, insufficient pipeline capacity cost Canada’s energy sector $20.6 billion – or one per cent of the country’s…

Alberta’s new government should cut energy sector taxes, rules

UCP promised to regain a competitive advantage, making the province attractive again for investors, entrepreneurs and businesses

Alberta’s new government should cut energy sector taxes, rulesBy Ashley Stedman and Elmira Aliakbari The Fraser Institute Albertans opted for change in last month’s provincial election. Now it’s time for the new government to do what it was elected to do: improve the economy. The United Conservative Party promised during the campaign to regain a competitive advantage over other jurisdictions and make the…

Trudeau government’s reckless spending digging deep hole

Future generations will pay higher taxes to finance today’s debt growth. And what has this record debt brought us?

Trudeau government’s reckless spending digging deep holeBy Jake Fuss and Milagros Palacios The Fraser Institute Throughout its mandate, rather than acting to reduce the federal budget deficit, the Liberal government has made “investments” in the form of more and more spending. Of course, this plan relies on a wave of good fortune – with positive economic growth and higher-than-expected revenues each…

Canada’s upstream oil and gas sector is in intensive care

The economic damage to the energy industry is due largely to government regulatory and tax policies

Canada’s upstream oil and gas sector is in intensive careBy Steven Globerman and Joel Emes The Fraser Institute Canadian oil and gas companies face major problems, in great part due to government policy. Legal restrictions on the expansion of pipeline capacity have restricted exports of oil, shrinking profit margins. The subsequent price decline for Western Canada Select oil spurred former Alberta premier Rachel Notley…

Budget deficits can increase social inequality

The burden of the debt financing falls on the whole population, and low-income Canadians can least afford to contribute

Budget deficits can increase social inequalityThere’s been much talk about the federal government’s attempts to enact redistributive policies to reduce income inequality in Canada. But the way these measures are funded could increase inequality. One think-tank in Quebec surveyed a panel of 70 policy experts who noted that the latest federal budget would, on the whole, reduce inequality. I contributed…

China represents world freedom’s greatest threat

It employs its great military, economic and seductive power to advance repression around the world

China represents world freedom’s greatest threatAs we watch the chaos on the streets of Venezuela, it’s apt to revisit the latest Human Freedom Index, published in part by the Fraser Institute. The index highlights an old danger re-emerging: authoritarian seducers, regimes that promote their model of despotism internationally through charm, money, power, bribery, threats and violence. Since the rise of…

Broader store hours ultimately benefit consumers

In Quebec, the debate rages again – even though the case for deregulation is overwhelming, according to economists

Broader store hours ultimately benefit consumersEvery few years, Quebec discusses store opening hours in the province. There are ebbs and flows to the discussion and we now seem to be at a flow point. The discussion pits smaller stores that want shorter hours versus larger stores that want fewer restrictions on opening hours. Rarely are consumers and workers brought into…

Trudeau’s deficit spending cripples the country

Mounting debt pushes up interest costs, consuming resources that could be used to fund important public services or provide tax relief

Trudeau’s deficit spending cripples the countryBy Jake Fuss, Finn Poschmann and Milagros Palacios The Fraser Institute The 2019 federal budget, delivered last month, firmly establishes the fiscal legacy of Justin Trudeau. It's not a positive legacy. No Canadian prime minister has spent more money per person (all figures inflation-adjusted) or accumulated more debt per person outside of a world war…

Loblaws subsidy underscores Canada’s flawed climate plan

Rather than relying on carbon pricing to make things happen, the government is picking winners and losers

Loblaws subsidy underscores Canada’s flawed climate planBy Elmira Aliakbari and Ashley Stedman The Fraser Institute The federal government announced recently that it will provide up to $12 million in subsidies to Canadian supermarket giant Loblaws Inc. for new energy-efficient refrigerators. Unfortunately, the subsidy proves again that the nation’s climate plan is severely flawed. According to the government’s news release, the subsidy…

Mining permit waits hamper Canadian development

Exploration is the critical first stage in mining development. Yet many provinces don't meet their own guidelines

Mining permit waits hamper Canadian developmentEvery year, the Fraser Institute publishes a survey of senior mining company executives that assesses policy environments around the world and the mineral potential of jurisdictions. Those two components are used to create an investment attractiveness index. One thing miners repeatedly tell us is that they’re concerned about obtaining exploration permits: how long does it…
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