Why private operation of public parks makes sense

Partnerships with private operators bring significant efficiencies and revenue sources for the public

Why private operation of public parks makes senseManitobans shouldn’t be afraid of the government partnering with the private sector to run public services such as provincial parks. Research shows these partnership agreements with private operators are quite common, are often well run, and bring significant efficiencies and revenue sources for the public. In 2020, the provincial government passed a law allowing companies…

Prairie provinces must put an end to rising debt

The current turmoil could weaken budgetary discipline, leading governments into long-term spending and increased debt

Prairie provinces must put an end to rising debtAt the end of 2020, Alberta’s debt was estimated at $98 billion, Manitoba’s was $28.6 billion and Saskatchewan’s stood at $15 billion. These debts are lower than Quebec’s ($220 billion) and Ontario’s ($448.9 billion), but there are concerns about their sustainability. Indeed, they’re a long-term burden for the governments, the taxpayers and the economy. Debt growth…

Why principals, teachers don’t belong in the same union

New legislation will allow Manitoba to follow the lead of Canada’s biggest provinces, creating clear lines between management and staff

Why principals, teachers don’t belong in the same unionPrincipals and teachers shouldn’t be in the same union. That was a key recommendation of the Manitoba Commission on Kindergarten to Grade 12 Education report. Clearly, the Manitoba government has taken this recommendation to heart. Bill 64, the Education Modernization Act, proposes to remove principals and vice-principals from teacher bargaining units. This is a significant…

Plenty of blame to share in Manitoba Hydro debacle

After two decades of political and managerial incompetence, Manitoba is on track to lose the province’s best economic advantage

Plenty of blame to share in Manitoba Hydro debacleFormer Saskatchewan premier Brad Wall’s report on the Keeyask dam and Bipole III transmission line expansion is a damning verdict on Manitoba Hydro’s past boards and executives, and various Manitoba governments. While Wall’s public criticism concentrates on the NDP, there’s much room for the current Progressive Conservative government to share the blame. Premiers former and…

Keep government out of the internet business

Keep government out of the internet businessManitoba’s Opposition New Democratic Party proposes the creation of a new Crown corporation to provide high-speed internet service to rural and remote communities, particularly First Nations communities, in that province. This is a bad idea for several reasons. A host of private-sector and government organizations are launching enormous flotillas of low-Earth orbit (LEO) satellites to…

Manitoba government too involved in insurance business

Unsurprisingly, as a government car insurance monopoly, MPI’s history is marked by politics

Manitoba government too involved in insurance businessManitoba Public Insurance (MPI) is in updating its computer programs and associated practices. Through an estimated multimillion-dollar effort, MPI plans to provide its customers with online services. With MPI’s long-needed revamped technology, licensed drivers and vehicle owners will be able to select insurance options and pay MPI bills without even conversing with a broker. Yet…

New canola-killing clubroot strains found in Western Canada

Their emergence of nine new strains points to the importance of broader strategies to protect crops in Western Canada

New canola-killing clubroot strains found in Western CanadaNine new strains of clubroot – a disease that can kill canola crops – have been discovered in Western Canadian fields. While that’s not good news for producers, the discovery shows how important it is to build a multi-pronged strategy for protecting their crops, not relying solely on canola plants bred to resist the disease,…

Manitoba poised to become a lithium-exporting powerhouse

Manitoba can quarterback an economic resurgence in Western Canada, with a focus on electric vehicles

Manitoba poised to become a lithium-exporting powerhouseThe slogan on licence plates reads, “Friendly Manitoba” but it might need to be changed to “Powerhouse Manitoba” over the next decade! Manitoba has a combination of the Hudson Bay seaport in Churchill giving access to an Atlantic Ocean channel, world-class nickel deposits, and a rail line allowing other precious metals such as lithium and…

A lost economic opportunity in northern B.C.

Windy Craggy is a perfect example of how misguided environmental activism is fuelling northern alienation

A lost economic opportunity in northern B.C.A World Heritage Site designation continues to prevent development of one of the largest cobalt and copper deposits in North America. That lack of development is denying opportunities for Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities. And it serves as an example of how environmental activism is fuelling northern alienation. Windy Craggy is in northwestern British Columbia, about…

Despite the alarmism, Covid-19 is not the Black Death

Instead of focusing on a problem concentrated in our long-term care facilities, politicians have closed vast swaths of our economy

Despite the alarmism, Covid-19 is not the Black DeathDespite the relentless media drum-banging around the alarmist COVID-19 narrative, this virus is not the Black Death. Official numbers have the Canadian death count so far just over 14,000, bad for sure, but not hugely off the yearly flu toll in Canada that kills 6,500 to 8,000 people.  The average age of those people who…

The government is not our mom

Leaders are ‘locked’ into a lockdown model that does more harm than good

The government is not our momIn a crushing blow to small business and morale, Manitoba Premier Brian Pallister has ordered a return to the very lockdown model that the World Health Organization (WHO) warned leaders to avoid. Premiers are being pressured by a prime minister who threatens to withhold money unless they once again shut down restaurants and small businesses…

Why Canada needs to develop its zinc deposits

Zinc is a critical ingredient in a variety of products, including soap. In the midst of a pandemic, we need to ensure supply

Why Canada needs to develop its zinc depositsZinc is an important ingredient in disinfectants such as soap, so it plays an important role in preventing the spread of COVID-19. As we know, the twin pillars of COVID-19 prevention are social distancing and washing your hands properly. So mining this bluish-white metal is important to Canada’s strategy for addressing the pandemic at home.…

Canadian Museum for Human Rights must rediscover its mission

In order to promote respect for others, and to encourage reflection and dialogue, the museum needs to clean up its own house

Canadian Museum for Human Rights must rediscover its missionThe Canadian Museum for Human Rights has made news around the world for all the wrong reasons. It has been derelict in its mission and mandate. The museum has been accused of maintaining a poisoned work environment that practices racism, discrimination, a lack of gender equity and inclusion. In November 2007, I was selected by…

Louis Riel’s trial continues 135 years later

Riel's transformation from rebel traitor to cultural icon hasn't come without backlash, says U of A professor

Louis Riel’s trial continues 135 years laterOne hundred and thirty-five years ago on July 20, Canada put Louis Riel on trial for high treason for precipitating the North West Resistance (traditionally called the North West Rebellion in mainstream settler history). Today, Riel is considered one of Canada’s most popular figures, easily eclipsing the country’s founding prime minister and his nemesis, John A. Macdonald. The political metamorphosis of Riel illustrates…

Half measures won’t solve the problem with police

It’s time to reduce funding to police and reallocate those dollars to more proactive ways to reduce crime

Half measures won’t solve the problem with policeHere’s a couple of questions that might have seemed crazy to many people just a few short years ago but are gaining purchase today. Do we really need as much policing as we have? Or are the ever-growing police budgets actually inadvertently leading to greater violence? A lot of us have believed that police exist…
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