How we can each deal with inflation

Buying only what we really need eases our budgets, simplifies our lives and cools the economy

How we can each deal with inflationInflation is a relatively new concept to younger people, who have never experienced the onslaught of rising prices. It’s chilling to those who have lived through or learned of times when hard-earned and well-saved money depreciated in value. Monetary policy in Canada aims to keep inflation at or under two per cent. The latest rate…

Why we can’t unscramble the egg of global trade

Self-sufficiency and even reduced trade will lead to a much lower standard of living

Why we can’t unscramble the egg of global tradeThree major factors are drastically changing the world: climate change, the pandemic and, most recently, the war in Ukraine. Much of the conventional wisdom that we learned in school and that still governs many political decisions seems no longer to apply. COVID-19, climate change and attempted conquests appear to give more credence to the often…

Western Canada continues to get shafted by Trudeau

Oil tankers off West coast are bad but drilling for oil off Newfoundland's coast is OK

Western Canada continues to get shafted by TrudeauWe all know politics is the art of the possible. Perfection isn’t for the real world. We aren’t surprised when tradeoffs and the occasional compromise creep into government policies. Nor do we require elected members of government, even at the ministerial level, to be experts in their portfolio areas, although we expect them to avail…

How to cope when shortages become a problem

Demand is booming. It’s supply that is lacking

How to cope when shortages become a problemThis time it’s different. That statement should usually be taken with a grain of salt. But right now, it’s a very good description of what’s happening in the business environment. Market economies function by balancing supply and demand for goods, services and inputs such as labour. When trouble arises, it’s usually in the form of…

Canada’s energy reserves could have helped ensure peace

We need to stop the self-immolation of our energy sector before the next crisis strikes

Canada’s energy reserves could have helped ensure peaceHow to end the conflict created by the Russian invasion of Ukraine is top of mind. Most of the world, including Canada, wants this nasty war resolved in Ukraine’s favour. To do this, steps need to be taken to limit Russian aggression, short of the direct military engagement that could lead to an all-out multinational,…

Destruction, eco-terrorism won’t deliver an energy revolution

Attack on the Coastal GasLink site was far more violent than the Freedom Convoy

Destruction, eco-terrorism won’t deliver an energy revolutionWhat Canada offers to its citizens isn’t glamorous or sexy, and it doesn’t inspire the beating of drums. It’s peace, order and good governance. These modest goals are accepted and expected by most Canadians. We may even have tended to take them for granted. But our peace and order have been threatened. For the past…

Better lifestyle choices will help repair our health-care system

Throwing more money into the existing system won't work

Better lifestyle choices will help repair our health-care systemCanada’s medical system is one of the defining benefits of living in this country, but we have learned from the pandemic that our medicare is nowhere near as strong and resilient as we might wish. Waiting lists have long been an indicator that the capacity of our clinics and hospitals was insufficient to meet our…

Taxing the unvaccinated takes us down a slippery slope

What's next? A tax on fat people?

Taxing the unvaccinated takes us down a slippery slopeOur patience is running thin as we plod through yet another wave of COVID-19. We’re starting to get annoyed at political and medical leaders, who we loved and trusted at the beginning of the pandemic – and only because they haven’t got us through it yet. Deep down, we know that everyone is doing the…

How to survive and thrive in a time of uncertainty

The rules that have guided our economy no longer apply

How to survive and thrive in a time of uncertaintyDid you notice that 2022 began with far fewer forecasts and outlooks than are usually seen when we put up our new annual calendars? And most of those who bravely made predictions for 2022 have already been proven wrong. The emergence of the Omicron variant of COVID-19, just when everyone was eagerly anticipating the end…

New Year’s resolutions that will boost your business

If you are self-employed, you will need to hone new skills to succeed

New Year’s resolutions that will boost your businessAs 2021 morphs into 2022, more than numbers on the calendar are changing. Technology, communications, media, weather – even the way we work and earn our livings – aren’t what they used to be. It used to be jobs, jobs, jobs. That’s what we wanted for ourselves, our partners, our kids; it’s what politicians promised…

We must address the growing crisis of opioid-related deaths

Drug users are going to keep using, so a better route to saving lives is to ensure drugs are clean and safe

We must address the growing crisis of opioid-related deathsWe’re supposed to be merry and bright as we approach the holidays and the new year. This year, there are many reasons to be less cheerful and festive. We’ve managed to make it through floods, fires and heat domes, but the pandemic persists with the Omicron mutation, inflation threatens our economy and the big, ugly…

Canada’s economy desperately needs business investment

The trend to lower investment in the private sector began in 2015

Canada’s economy desperately needs business investmentGross domestic product (GDP) is what economists call the totality of goods and services Canada produces. It’s often referred to as the economic pie. We all want a share of the pie. Most of us think it’s only fair that all Canadians should be able to enjoy at least a basic level of income. Therefore,…

When a job becomes greedy and overwhelms your life

The pandemic has taught us that life beyond the job is possible

When a job becomes greedy and overwhelms your lifeThe wage gap between men and women stubbornly persists even after adjusting for all the usual factors like education and occupation. Career and Family: Women’s Century-Long Journey Toward Equity, a new book by Harvard professor Claudia Goldin, takes a fresh look at the issue. Goldin introduces the concept of greedy jobs. These are the jobs…

Three tips to keep your staff happy, productive and loyal

Keeping a worker is easier, faster and less expensive than replacing one

Three tips to keep your staff happy, productive and loyalAmong the many challenges facing businesses today is getting and keeping enough employees. The pandemic is often blamed for the labour shortages. Many people received income maintenance payments, sometimes exceeding their previous salaries, and no longer had to work. Stopping the subsidies may or may not bring them back, although raising wages will help. Others…

Why a universal basic income falls short

And what we can do instead

Why a universal basic income falls shortIn a country as rich as Canada, no one should have to go cold or hungry. But is universal basic income the answer? Income assistance and other programs provide for almost all of the poorest among us, although some always slip between the cracks. No one would describe the level of support as generous, nor…
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