Babel-on-the-Bay: Lies. And Trudeau-Trump lies.

You have come to expect it in the daily reports from the American White House. You know that the man in the White House tells lies. You just do not expect it from the guy in charge in Ottawa. And you already knew that the guy in charge at the White House does not give ...

Views from the Beltline: Will Alberta revert to Social Credit?

In August, 1971, Alberta had its quiet revolution. For 36 years it had been governed by Social Credit, a largely rural-based, social-conservative party led for most of those years by E.C. Manning, father of leading conservative intellectual and unite-the-right guru Preston Manning. By 1971 Alberta, like the rest of the country, was increasingly urbanizing and ...

The Progressive Economics Forum: The Alternative Federal Budget 2017

This year’s Alternative Federal Budget (AFB) was released on March 9. I was proud to be the primary author of its housing chapter (that chapter is available in English here and in French here). The first AFB exercise began in 1994, with the first AFB being published in 1995. That involved a joint effort between ...

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: Sustainable Fossil Fuel Myths

I think the Fossil Fuel industry isn’t going to manage to sustain their myths. They say things that a kid with a 5th grade education should figure out are not true. Burning natural gas is not sustainable. It’s a fossil fuel. It will run out, and it produces waste gas that contributes to climate change. ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Could Chantal Hébert be so diabolical?

Is it whimsy or a diabolical intent? Is Toronto Star political guru Chantal Hébert really that devious? She recently proposed that Rona Ambrose, the federal interim leader for the Conservatives as the ideal person to step in and take over the reins of the combined provincial Conservatives in Alberta. That is a wonderful proposal and ...

The Cracked Crystal Ball II: On Budgets and Deficits In Alberta

Today was budget day in Alberta.  More or less, the NDP government brought in the budget that had been expected.  Continued spending on big ticket items that have been put off for years, if not decades. Predictably both the PC and WildRose opposition parties are crying foul.  The argument is largely that “running up the ...

The Progressive Economics Forum: Foundations for an Alberta Alternative Budget

An Alberta-based volunteer working group, of which I’m a part, recently released a document titled Foundations for an Alberta Alternative Budget (for media coverage, see this Metro article).  Working group members include staff from Alberta’s non-profit sector, labour movement and advocacy sector. While our long-term goal is to emulate the great work of the Alternative ...

The Progressive Economics Forum: Alberta Alternative Budget 2017

Media Release Foundations for an Alberta Alternative Budget released today (March 14, 2017-Edmonton) Today, a coalition of researchers, economists, and members of civil society released a plan to boost Alberta’s economic growth while reducing income inequality. “For too long Alberta’s public services have been strained from decades of underfunding and reliance on volatile energy markets,” ...

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: Trudeau’s Second Face Speaks Up For Big Oil

The Prime Minister caught a lot of heat for speaking the truth the other month about shutting down the Tar Sands. Then, predictably after furious backpedaling, he let the other side of his face speak about what the Liberals will really allow to permit our climate’s destruction. “No country would find 173 billion barrels of ...

Views from the Beltline: Will city folk continue to be Alberta’s second class citizens?

Amid debate about adopting a voting system to replace the egregiously undemocratic first-past-the-post, another offense against fair voting is sometimes overlooked. In Alberta, an opportunity to redress that particular sin is underway. In accordance with the Alberta Electoral Boundaries Commission Act, a commission has been established to set the constituency boundaries for the 2019 provincial

Views from the Beltline: Will city folk continue to be Alberta’s second class citizens?

Amid debate about adopting a voting system to replace the egregiously undemocratic first-past-the-post, another offense against fair voting is sometimes overlooked. In Alberta, an opportunity to redress that particular sin is underway. In accordance with the Alberta Electoral Boundaries Commission Act, a commission has been established to set the constituency boundaries for the 2019 provincial

The Progressive Economics Forum: Public Policy and Homelessness: The Case of Calgary

Over at the web site of the Calgary Homeless Foundation, I’ve written a blog post titled “Public Policy and Homelessness:  The Case of Calgary.” Points raised in the blog post include the following: -Calgary experienced explosive growth in the size of its homeless population from the mid-1990s until 2008. -Though causation is hard to establish, ...

The Progressive Economics Forum: Poverty Reduction in Alberta

Over at the web site of the Calgary Homeless Foundation, I’m co-author of a blog post titled “Poverty Reduction in Alberta.” Points raised in the blog post include the following: -The NDP government of Premier Rachel Notley has undertaken important poverty-reduction initiatives since forming a government in 2015. -Alberta (relative to other provinces) has a ...

The Progressive Economics Forum: Social Housing in BC, AB and QC (1975-2015)

Over at the web site of the Calgary Homeless Foundation is a transcript of a recent discussion I had with Dr. Maroine Bendaoud. His recently-defended PhD thesis looks at social housing in BC, Alberta and Quebec from 1975 until 2015. Points raised in his thesis include he following: -After Canada’s federal government stopped funding new ...

The Cracked Crystal Ball II: Changing Education Curriculum

The Alberta Government kicked off a major review and overhaul of the province's school curricula in June of 2016.  Given that large tracts of the curricula haven't been reviewed or changed in a very long time, this seems to be a perfectly reasonable task for any government to undertake. The current curriculum used by students ...

The Cracked Crystal Ball II: Changing Education Curriculum

The Alberta Government kicked off a major review and overhaul of the province's school curricula in June of 2016.  Given that large tracts of the curricula haven't been reviewed or changed in a very long time, this seems to be a perfectly reasonable task for any government to undertake. The current curriculum used by students ...

Alberta Politics: Alberta’s right doubtless dismayed as The Economist boots the U.S.A. off its list of ‘full democracies’

PHOTOS: Democracy has been downgraded in the U.S.A. … (Azerbaijan Press Agency photo). Below: A recent copy of The Economist, U.S. President Donald Trump and Wildrose Alliance Leader Danielle Smith in her political heyday. Hmmm… The venerable Economist Magazine’s research arm yesterday booted the United States off its list of “full democracies,” demoting Ronald Reagan’s ...

Accidental Deliberations: Wednesday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material for your mid-week reading. – The Star argues that a crackdown on tax evasion and avoidance is a crucial first step in reining in inequality. Susan Delacourt wonders when, if ever, Chrystia Freeland’s apparent interest in inequality will show up in her role in government. And Vanmala Subramaniam reminds us why the cause ...

Views from the Beltline: Pipelines, good-looking liberals and Hanoi Jane

Jane Fonda is unhappy with our prime minister. She has announced that “we shouldn’t be fooled by good-looking liberals.” Rachel Notley says Fonda doesn’t know what she’s talking about. I’m with Rachel. Ms. Fonda, an ardent environmentalist, believes that by supporting pipelines, Prime Minister Trudeau “has betrayed every one of the things that he committed ...

Views from the Beltline: Pipelines, good-looking liberals and Hanoi Jane

Jane Fonda is unhappy with our prime minister. She has announced that “we shouldn’t be fooled by good-looking liberals.” Rachel Notley says Fonda doesn’t know what she’s talking about. I’m with Rachel. Ms. Fonda, an ardent environmentalist, believes that by supporting pipelines, Prime Minister Trudeau “has betrayed every one of the things that he committed ...

Dead Wild Roses: Sexism Alive and Well in 2016 – as its always been.

I would like to thank a recent commenter here on DWR for the placement of a tidy swarm of bees squarely in my bonnet. The honour, of course, goes to Godless Cranium for this nugget of wisdom shared on a previous thread: “And I’m not saying sexism doesn’t exist or doesn’t play a factor sometimes, ...

The Progressive Economics Forum: Enumerating Homeless Persons

Over at the web site of the Calgary Homeless Foundation, I’ve written a blog post titled “Ten things to know about Canadian attempts to count homeless persons through Point-in-Time Counts.” Points I raise in the post include the following: -Efforts to enumerate homeless persons in Canada often have mixed objectives.  In part, an attempt is ...

The Progressive Economics Forum: Calgary Homeless Foundation’s Research Agenda

The Calgary Homeless Foundation (CHF) has just released its updated Research Agenda (which I co-authored).  CHF is a non-governmental organization that disburses funding to non-profit organizations in Calgary to help persons experiencing homelessness.  Our Research Agenda is a bit like an annual report (except it typically comes out once very two years). The following points ...

The Progressive Economics Forum: Do Calgary and Edmonton need more power and resources?

Over at the web site of the Calgary Homeless Foundation, I’ve written a blog post titled “Do Calgary and Edmonton need more power and resources?” The blog post comes as the Government of Alberta considers the possibility of, well, giving more power and sources to both Calgary and Edmonton. Points raised in the blog post ...

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: Wall Took Money From Who?

Who has the Saskatchewan Party accepted donations from? The UofR, City of Regina, Regina Public Library, etc. Most of the cash came from oil companies such as Crescent Point, Cenovus, Encana and PennWest, though the Canadian Energy Pipeline Association, the Canadian Western Bank and construction company PCL also contributed. …The NDP last year campaigned on getting big ...