National Newswatch

Deepening Divides: the IMF Refreshes its Crystal Ball

Oct 25 2021 — Kevin Lynch and Paul Deegan — In these most uncertain times, the annual meetings of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank in Washington last week were distracted not only by an investigation of the IMF’s own managing director, Kristalina Georgieva, but also the American debt ceiling hijinks that threatened to roil the very global financial markets that policy makers […]

How to Avoid a Seinfeld Campaign

Aug 23 2021 — Kevin Lynch and Paul Deegan — While former Prime Minister Kim Campbell was fatefully misquoted in the 1993 election campaign as having said, “An election is no time to discuss serious issues,” the sentiment she expressed in her verbatim answer to a reporter’s question about social programs — “This is not the time, I don’t think, to get involved in a […]

The budget’s intergenerational transfer of debt and risk is unprecedented, but to what purpose?

May 11 2021 — Kevin Lynch and Paul Deegan — Now that the hoopla has faded and the Parliamentary Budget Officer and others, including ourselves, have waded through the 9-megabyte, 724-page federal budget, it is much clearer what kind of beast it both is and is not. As a political statement, it should yield electoral dividends. As an economic statement, it favours short-term consumption over […]

The era of big government is coming back

Mar 20 2021 — Kevin Lynch and Paul Deegan — In his inaugural address on Jan. 20, 1981, Republican president Ronald Reagan declared “government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem.” Fifteen years later, Democrat Bill Clinton made a similarly bold assertion: “The era of big government is over.” While Mr. Reagan and Mr. Clinton were both masterful communicators, they should […]

The Great Budgetary Pivot: But to Where?

Mar 3 2021 — Kevin Lynch and Paul Deegan — What a difference a year makes. We are living with unprecedented economic uncertainty and personal insecurity that harken back to the Great Depression of the 1930s. The deadly, global pandemic was the dominant health, political and economic story in 2020, and continues to be in 2021. Indeed, its aftermath will affect future generations. Today, we […]

Five steps to sustainable fiscal management for Canada

Jan 29 2021 — Kevin Lynch and Paul Deegan — As Canada emerged from the global financial crisis a decade ago, there was a vigorous debate. Some argued for fiscal consolidation to rebuild resiliency while others advocated for sustained stimulus to reduce excess capacity. We are replaying that debate today as the Canadian economy begins its recovery from the global pandemic. In a twist, it […]

What can Canada do for Joe Biden?

Jan 15 2021 — Kevin Lynch and Paul Deegan — The United States embarked on a presidential transition like no other, with the outgoing president dangerously sowing the seeds of disruption, distrust and even insurrection, and the incoming president seeking to restore democratic order and traditional norms of decency and respect. President-elect Joe Biden needs allies during this extraordinary transition, and not just in the […]

Brace Yourselves: The Tests of 2021

Dec 17 2020 — Kevin Lynch and Paul Deegan — A year ago, most Canadians had never heard of a novel coronavirus. Yet, COVID-19, a particularly virulent virus, dominated our lives and livelihoods in 2020 and will continue to shape them throughout 2021. Its toll on public health, economies, government finances, businesses, and families will last for decades. We had been warned. On May 15, […]

Time to get global co-operation on the agenda

Oct 7 2020 — Kevin Lynch and Paul Deegan — In 1944, U.S. treasury secretary Henry Morgenthau, Jr. set the tone and ambition for the Bretton Woods Conference, “We have come to recognize that the wisest and most effective way to protect our national interests is through international co-operation – that is to say, through united effort for the attainment of common goals.” The Bretton […]