National Newswatch
Eugene Lang

The shelf life of defence White Papers

Jun 23 2017 — Eugene Lang — The Trudeau government has just published their much anticipated defence White Paper. Titled Strong, Secure, Engaged, the document was the product of unprecedented public consultations, ranging from round tables chaired by the Minister of National Defence to an online portal for Canadians to make submissions, more than 20,000 of which were received by the government.

A report card on the national security bill

Jun 22 2017 — — Bill C-59 is the government’s massive reform of Canada’s national security law. It is the real deal: the biggest reform in this area since 1984, and the creation of the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS). It is a big deal: 150 pages. We have been pouring through it, contrasting its features against the views we […]

Traditional media still most trusted

Jun 22 2017 — — Social media and mobile phones have become preferred options for news consumption among a growing number of users. However, in Canada, as in other countries among the 36 surveyed for the 2017 Reuters Institute Digital News Report, it appears that most people still consider traditional media or their brands the most trustworthy sources. The report […]

Second election not the answer to BC’s political mess

Jun 21 2017 — — It has been six weeks since British Columbians went to the polls. The absentee ballots have been counted, the recounts are over, and the newly elected members have been sworn in. Remarkably, it still feels more like intermission than curtains down. The BC Liberals — still technically the government — lost their majority but maintained […]

The UK’s murky political future

Jun 20 2017 — — It’s been a little under two weeks since the UK election, when support for Theresa May’s government plunged. She was left with not a super-majority as she hoped, but a minority situation. Much of the UK’s political future is murky.

Justin Trudeau and “reconciliatory federalism”

Jun 19 2017 — — In the coming weeks the Canadian calendar is filled with days of celebration. On June 21, Canadians are invited to honour the contributions to Canada of First Nations, Métis and Inuit peoples on National Aboriginal Day. June 24 is Saint-Jean Baptiste Day, a national holiday for Quebecers and French-Canadians across the country. These festivities will […]

Canada Still Has No Real Defence Policy

Jun 16 2017 — — On 7 June 2017, Minister of National Defence (MND) Harjit Sajjan released the Defence Policy Review statement, titled Strong, Secure, Engaged: Canada’s Defence Policy. Like previous editions, this statement promises more troops, more equipment and stable funding for at least the next decade. And like defence policies in the past, it faces skepticism about whether […]

The next chapter in pension reform

Jun 14 2017 — — The announcement a year ago by Canada’s finance ministers that they had finally reached an agreement on a plan to enhance CPP benefits for future generation of retirees brought to a close a rather tumultuous, lengthy chapter in the history of pension reform in Canada. The then-new Liberal government had agreed to resume talks with […]

Policy thinking beyond Canada’s 150th

Jun 12 2017 — — Canada’s 150th anniversary is a time to celebrate and appreciate what we have as a country and society and to reflect on what we have learned. It is also a time to look forward — to boldly take stock of the challenges facing us today and envision Canada as the even greater society that it […]

What’s next, after the 2012 copyright overhaul?

Jun 12 2017 — Michael Geist — The decade-long debate over Canadian copyright that preceded the 2012 legislative overhaul was marked by sharply divided views among stakeholders across the spectrum. Five years later, the reform package assembled by then-ministers Tony Clement and James Moore may not have been perfect, but the Conservative government got far more right than it got wrong.

Rebates should be part of electric car strategy

Jun 9 2017 — — Last month, Ottawa officially kicked off work on a national strategy for zero-emission cars. And this week, a thoughtful report from Canada’s Ecofiscal Commission said that offering incentives to Canadians who buy those cars doesn’t make much sense. Our take? A national game plan to get more electric vehicles (EVs) on Canada’s roads is essential, […]

Indigenous people and the Constitution conversation

Jun 9 2017 — Veldon Coburn — If Trudeau doesn’t want to have a conversation about the Constitution, how does he envision a renewed nation-to-nation relationship with Indigenous people? Last week, when Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard suggested that it might be time for a Constitutional conversation, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau wasted no time in shutting the federal door on any such proposal. […]

Reconciliation: Beyond incremental change

Jun 8 2017 — — In 2008, Prime Minister Stephen Harper delivered a statement of apology on behalf of the Canadian government to former students of the Indian residential school system. In it, he acknowledged the primary objectives of the system (“to remove and isolate children from the influence of their homes, families, traditions and cultures, and to assimilate them […]

Trump’s Paris withdrawal, Canada’s opportunity

Jun 7 2017 — — Donald Trump may have done the world a big favour last Thursday afternoon when he announced he was pulling the United States out of the Paris agreement. In a single blurt, he largely muted three years of expected US obstruction at the international climate negotiating table, while salvaging the momentum toward ever-more-ambitious greenhouse gas reductions […]

Strategies for a new world of work

Jun 7 2017 — — The world of work has changed. A wave of technology, globalization and new ways of working has created employment challenges that threaten the future prosperity of our young people. Although they are accumulating skills and working hard to find employment, many young workers are struggling.