National Newswatch

Canada can learn from Swiss and Dutch drug coverage

Sep 6 2019 — Bacchus Barua and Kristina Acri — As the Trudeau government seems poised to propose a national pharmacare plan in time for October’s federal election, many proponents of national pharmacare note that Canada is the only industrialized universal health-care country that does not provide universal coverage for prescription drugs. However, those same proponents often ignore the fact that other countries provide universal […]

Climate policy—results more important than rhetoric

Aug 15 2019 — Robert P. Murphy — I work on environmental and energy economics in both Canada and the United States. I’ve noticed that U.S. debates tend to focus on abstract principles— “capitalism versus socialism,” for example—whereas Canadians tend to put aside ideology and inquire about the empirical details. In this context, and as Canada’s political parties rollout their climate plans for […]

Mr. Prime Minister, the good times won’t last forever

May 27 2019 — Jake Fuss and Milagros Palacios — Throughout its mandate, rather than acting to reduce the federal budget deficit, the Trudeau government has made “investments” in the form of more and more spending. Of course, this plan relies on a wave of good fortune, with positive economic growth and higher-than-expected revenues each year, to finance the government’s proclivity for spending. However, recent […]

Prime Minister Trudeau cements his ‘debt’ legacy

Apr 25 2019 — Jake Fuss, Finn Poschmann and Milagros Palacios — With this year’s federal budget, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau firmly established his fiscal legacy. No Canadian prime minister has spent more money (per person, inflation-adjusted) or accumulated more debt (per person), outside a world war or recession, than Prime Minister Trudeau. Canada’s gross debt will increase this year by almost $120 billion (again, adjusted for […]

Legault government public ‘education’ initiative on electoral reform falls well short

Mar 23 2019 — Lydia Miljan — Quebec Justice Minister Sonia LeBel recently announced that the Legault government is moving forward with electoral reform. Yet unlike other provincial governments, rather than proceed with a referendum, the CAQ government will table a bill to move Quebec to a mixed member proportional (MMP) electoral system before October 1. LeBel claims that the bill “will […]

Vincent Geloso

Government meddling and increased air pollution

Mar 7 2019 — Vincent Geloso — When economists speak about climate change risk, they use a lens of externalities. Simply put, externalities emerge when exchanges between two parties has consequences that spill over onto third parties. These externalities are labelled “negative” when these spillovers hurt third parties. Greenhouse gas emissions resulting from economic activity constitute a negative externality, as producers and […]

Recession would seriously derail federal finances

Feb 15 2019 — Jake Fuss, Milagros Palacios and Jason Clemens — Fiscal prudence—the ability of the government to balance its budget and manage the finances of the country responsibly—is an increasing concern for Canadians. According to a recent Nanos poll, a majority of Canadians now favour balancing the federal budget more than continuing to run deficits to finance spending. Unfortunately the Trudeau government is focused almost […]

Canadian student performance does not reflect increases in spending

Feb 2 2019 — Angela MacLeod — Parents across the country are concerned about the state of K-12 education in Canada. Results from standardized exams administered by several provinces and international tests such as the OECD’s Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) are alarming, particularly in math. There’s a pervasive myth that large cuts to education spending are responsible for the decline […]

The tide of global freedom is receding—but there’s hope

Jan 26 2019 — Fred McMahon — Is the world losing its taste for freedom as we move further into 2019? Two recent reports confirm the perception that freedom is under attack globally. The Human Freedom Index, a joint project of Canada’s Fraser Institute, U.S.-based Cato Institute and Germany’s Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom, measures freedom on a 0 – 10 scale […]

Despite decades of government subsidies, Canadian innovation has waned

Jan 15 2019 — Steven Globerman — The implementation and adoption of new methods of producing goods and services, along with the introduction and use of new products and new ways of organizing businesses, remain critical to improving living standards. Indeed, studies show that innovation is the driving force behind long-run increases in incomes in developed countries. Here in Canada, federal and […]

Alberta government should increase access to for-profit schools

Dec 11 2018 — Jason Clemens and Angela MacLeod — As parents across Alberta express increasing concern about the state of K-12 education, the possibility for real education reform—including greater access to independent schools for more Alberta families—has increased regardless of the provincial election outcome in the spring. There’s a large and growing body of research showing the benefits of school choice for students and […]

Vincent Geloso

Quebec, Bombardier and the sunk cost fallacy

Dec 5 2018 — Vincent Geloso — Bombardier CEO Alain Bellemare is in New York this week trying to convince shareholders that the company’s woes are temporary. In the last few weeks, the Canadian aerospace giant suffered a series of body blows regarding sales of its new airplanes, which threw the company’s future in doubt—again. In response, the Government of Quebec announced […]