The Broadbent Blog

THE HUB FOR CANADA’S LEADING PROGRESSIVE VOICES.

Disclaimer: the opinions expressed herein are those of the author and not necessarily those of the Institute.

Federal tax review must target loopholes for wealthy, boost fiscal capacity

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Progressive tax reform to promote both greater distributional fairness and increased fiscal capacity to fund social programs and public services should be squarely on the agenda for the 2017 federal budget. Indeed, with faltering growth, the federal Liberals will be hard-pressed to meet their commitments to new investments,while still ensuring a promised decline in the federal debt to GDP ratio, if they do not significantly increase revenues.

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On reconciliation, the government can and must do more

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A year has passed since the closing event of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission in Ottawa — a brief moment of self-reflection that punctured through a stubborn, willful and long-standing national blindness. 

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Canada's middle-class jobs challenge

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Good jobs are a central mechanism in the creation of shared prosperity.

What matters for workers is not just being able to find any job but also security of employment, level of pay, working conditions, and the opportunity to develop talents and capacities. 

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Left and liberal colour blindness imperil real change for Black people

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Since the very public executions of Alton Sterling and Philander Castile, I find myself in a profound state of sadness. 

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Ed Broadbent: reflections on a mentor and professor

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At the age of 18, when I entered Glendon College York University in 1965, I found myself drawn to a 28 year old political philosophy professor who, contrary to most of the staidly dressed professors at Glendon, wore turtle-neck sweaters and was whispered to be a committed socialist and anti-war activist.

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Brexit vote underlines need for a reformed globalization model

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The narrow victory of the leave side in the Brexit referendum demands a profound rethinking of the liberal globalization agenda.

At one, highly disturbing level, the majority for leave was a clear victory for the nativist, often overtly racist, populist right, and a clear defeat for the economic and political elites who overwhelmingly backed the remain side. As widely noted, this underlines the lack of broad popular support for deep economic and political integration which seems to be increasingly pervasive in both Europe and the United States. 

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Ontario’s Climate Plan and the Promise of Mobilizing Markets and Society

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Ontario released its much anticipated climate action plan, and the reviews are in. There are accolades and constructive criticisms.

A particularly scathing criticism came from a Globe and Mail editorial that suggests the government could have “simply brought in a carbon price and stopped there”. The Globe claims that price signals could have done the job and left more up to “individual choice”, while achieving emissions reductions at minimum cost. This is a policy based on a narrow and ultra-orthodox reading of neoclassical economics, and it is good that Ontario did not limit itself to carbon pricing.

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LGBT progress is a Canadian story

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As we reflect on the Conservative Party convention voting two-to-one to raise the white flag and abandon its longstanding policy to deny LGBT love, we can be amazed at how far Canada has come in such a short time.

 

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Employers and expansion of the Canada Pension Plan

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When the federal and provincial finance ministers meet on June 20-21, they will have to decide whether or not to enhance the Canada Pension Plan (CPP) as promised by the Liberals in the last federal election. This will require the support of at least seven provinces with a combined two-thirds of the population and, effectively, a broad public consensus.

In that context, it is encouraging that the leading business organizations of all provinces but Alberta endorsed a modest expansion of the CPP in a letter sent to finance ministers on June 1.

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Indigenous children and racial discrimination as fiscal policy

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The federal government knowingly discriminates against Indigenous children and their families. That discrimination is part of the colonial fabric that holds together Canadian political-economic development.

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