The Broadbent Blog


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

Charting the path to National Pharmacare in Canada

National Pharmacare has been a topic of discussion in Canada for over half a century, yet we remain unique
among the world’s high-income countries with universal health coverage in that we still do not include outpatient prescription drugs in our national benefit package. There is a growing sense that we will never be able to achieve the full potential of universal health coverage without national Pharmacare.

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Are Canadians overtaxed? The equation is complicated



This blogpost originally appeared in the Globe and Mail. 

Partly fuelled by reports from conservative think-tanks such as the Fraser Institute, many Canadians believe that they are taxed far too heavily and that the tax “burden” has been rising over time. Recently published Statistics Canada data show, in fact, that most individual Canadians pay very low effective rates of personal income tax, and that the tax “burden” has been falling.

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Making progress in tough times: Lessons from 2018

In October, I had a moment with my eldest son that really brought home to me the angst that many progressive people were feeling throughout 2018.

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“Between Two Joints, You Could Get Up and Do Something”*

*Editor’s note: the original quote (“ent’deux joints tu pourrais faire qu’qu’chose, ent’deux joints tu pourrais t’grouiller l’cul”) is the refrain of a popular 1973 Robert Charlebois song, lyrics by Pierre Bourgault, entitled “Entr’ deux joints”.

According to Statistics Canada, the illegal cannabis industry was already generating 5.6 billion dollars in profits in 2017 and each Canadian was rolling the equivalent of 20 g of cannabis.

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BC leads the way to a better future for people and planet

Maybe it was the months of smoke-filled skies or the flash floods following hard on the heels of long droughts. Or maybe it was mountainsides covered in beetle-killed trees or glaciers melting to slivers of ice. Whatever the reason, British Columbia has got the message when it comes to climate change.

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What we can learn from the Oshawa General Motors announcement

The announced General Motors closures have shown us that we need to explore a new industrial strategy, where public investments gives equity in companies, and where public control can help us preserve manufacturing, and direct it toward just social and environmental outcomes. Above all, we have to realize that it is the people, and not the corporations, who should make the economic decisions which affect them in their daily lives.   

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Review: Ontario's Economic Outlook and Fall Fiscal Update 2018

The Ontario government’s annual Economic Outlook and Fall Fiscal Update arrives on the heels of a controversial first quarter for Premier Doug Ford’s new Progressive Conservative government. Campaigning solely on a message of reversing the legacy of the Ontario Liberals’ time in government — primarily by reducing government spending and making life more “affordable” for Ontarians, Ford’s first five months has largely resulted in service, democratic and economic disruption, instead of actual cost-savings that would benefit average Ontarians.

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Canada’s economic competitiveness lies in an equitable and low carbon future

There has been plenty of fear mongering that Canada must follow U.S. President Trump’s corporate tax cut agenda or face economic devastation. Yet many of the experts, often those not working for corporate interests, agree on two things: there is no assurance and much skepticism that the broad cuts will lead to significantly greater economic competitiveness for the U.S in the long-term1,2; and, there are much more effective levers to generate a competitive advantage for the Canadian economy than tax cuts3.

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Broadbent Reads: Crashed by Adam Tooze

Book Review

Adam Tooze. Crashed: How a Decade of Financial Crises Changed the World. Viking. New York. 2018

The global economic crisis is now more than a decade old, and is far from definitively behind us. Indeed, many fear, with good reason, that the recent, uneven and lethargic global recovery may soon come to an end, and that the next crisis of global capitalism could be even worse than that of 2008.

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National security, protectionism and the new trade deal with the United States and Mexico

The Trudeau government has said that the new USMC agreement continues to give us an effective means of resolving bilateral disputes with the United States, allowing us to appeal to a special tribunal if  that country (or Mexico) has, in our view, violated the agreement.

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