National Newswatch

The fall fiscal update: The cupboard is now bare

Nov 13 2014 — Scott Clark and Peter DeVries — Several weeks ago, Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced major tax cuts for families with children. He vowed to introduce income-splitting for families with children under the age of 18; enhancements to the Universal Child Care Benefit and to the Child Care Expense Deduction; doubling of the fitness tax credit for children and making it tax-deductible. […]

These are the wrong tax cuts for an economy in peril

Nov 5 2014 — Scott Clark and Peter DeVries — Say what you like about the package of tax measures rolled out by Prime Minister Harper last week — that they’re ruinously expensive, chauvinistically focused on households with stay-at-home moms and unfair to double-earner families and singles in general. Politically, they’re quite clever. The New Democrats and Liberals have their work cut out. The Conservatives […]

A windfall for the rich, a sop for everyone else

Oct 31 2014 — Scott Clark and Peter DeVries — Everyone was expecting Prime Minister Harper to announce a significant change to the tax system Thursday — one that would allow income-splitting for families with children aged 18 and younger. He did a lot more than that. He basically delivered much of the 2015 budget. According to the material provided with Harper’s announcement, the total […]

Fiddling while the economy burns

Oct 21 2014 — Scott Clark and Peter DeVries — Let’s begin with a gross understatement: The outlook for the global economy is not good. In its October 2014 World Economic Outlook (WEO), the International Monetary Fund reduced its forecast for global economic growth to 3.3 per cent for 2014, 0.4 points lower than the April 2014 WEO forecast. The global growth projection for 2015 […]

Mr. Harper’s peek-a-boo budget deficit

Oct 14 2014 — Scott Clark and Peter DeVries — Nobody should have been surprised when Prime Minister Harper recently let slip that the federal deficit for 2013-14 came in at $5.2 billion, substantially lower than the $16.6 billion forecast in the February 2014 budget. Deficits forecasts are political props now — part of the theatre of budget-making. A government’s fiscal credibility — with voters […]

The economy is in a coma. Tax cuts won’t help.

Sep 10 2014 — Scott Clark and Peter DeVries — We’re roughly a year away from the next federal election, and the recession recovery that forms the bedrock of the Harper government’s political narrative is looking more and more like smoke. Last Friday, Statistics Canada released its Labour Force Survey for the month of August. It showed the economy lost 11,000 jobs in August, following […]

Hudak’s ‘cure’ could kill the patient

Jun 11 2014 — Scott Clark and Peter DeVries — In a previous article, we applauded Ontario PC Leader Tim Hudak for giving voters a clear choice about the future of both Ontario’s economy and that of the nation. Ontario makes up 40 per cent of the Canadian economy; if it’s not doing well, it tends to drag the rest of the country down. So […]

Restoring integrity to the budget process

Mar 4 2013 — Scott Clark and Peter DeVries — By Scott Clark and Peter DeVries | March 04, 2013 This article is part of the Macdonald-Laurier Institute’s forthcoming issue of Inside Policy   The Minister of Finance will soon be completing his pre-2013 Budget consultations. Over the coming weeks, the media and pundits will begin speculating about what the Minister of Finance will do in […]