Airport land lease fees inflate Canadian travel costs

The land leases that the federal government requires of the 26 largest public sector airports under its control in Canada are entirely avoidable

Airport land lease fees inflate Canadian travel costsTravellers will be annoyed at yet another hike in the airport improvement fee (AIF), from $20 to $25, on every airline ticket originating at Vancouver International Airport (YVR). But that’s a relatively minor irritant compared to another major airport expense that raises costs to airlines and, as a result, air fares. The land leases that…

Capitalism has its own moral virtues

Dictating social outcomes for corporations is unnecessary and unproductive

Capitalism has its own moral virtuesIn a time where capitalism is under attack from several directions, it’s also being undermined by the very individuals and organizations that should be defending it. The Business Roundtable, a group of chief executive officers of more than 100 of the largest publicly traded corporations in the United States, recently issued an open Statement on…

Moral investment constraints too onerous for pension funds

Never mind that reducing the choices available to a fund manager can result in negative consequences for pensioners

Moral investment constraints too onerous for pension fundsSome Canadian institutional investment and pension funds have faced scrutiny recently because they owned or own shares in American prison-management companies GEO and CoreCivic. That criticism is unwarranted and unfair. These firms operate prisons, detention centres and rehabilitation facilities in the U.S. Given that the U.S. incarcerates more people than anywhere else in the world,…

CMHC nudging more aggressively into housing market

The risk of housing price declines piles onto the risk CMHC already takes on when insuring mortgages

CMHC nudging more aggressively into housing marketCanada’s federal government will soon participate in the property bubble in a direct, equity-owning way through its new First-Time Home Buyer Incentive. But the merits of the program are questionable. Since the end of the Second World War, it’s been federal government policy to help low-income would-be home buyers via Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp.…

Increasing government debt rarely a successful strategy

Increasing government debt rarely a successful strategyAll the rage in progressive policy and political circles in the United States, but not quite on the radar in Canada, is a fairly new set of ideas and prescriptions called Modern Monetary Theory, or MMT for short. Critics, somewhat unfairly, say MMT is simply a means of printing money to cover a vast, ambitious…

Bill C-69 is a loose, vague obstacle to development

The law is so full of giant holes that it could make things much worse for anyone planning a large project to improve our economy

Bill C-69 is a loose, vague obstacle to developmentCanada is no longer a low-risk, high-return venue for investment. The federal government has boxed itself into a corner in its attempts to square the process for reviewing and approving large mining, pipeline or other projects. It has run counter to the private sector’s desire for any such process to be clear, simple, relatively quick,…

Without new investment, Canada’s economy will stagnate

That means we need corporate tax reductions and we must ease the regulatory path for businesses

Without new investment, Canada’s economy will stagnateThere has been a lot of concern over the slow increase in living standards of the average Canadian over the past few decades. In the long run, economists say that the key to increasing real – corrected for inflation – wages is to increase productivity of those in the labour force. How to actually do…

The sad state of Canada’s economy can be remedied

Lower tax rates, with more capital investment, are crucial to increasing productivity, wages and living standards – and boosting the loonie

The sad state of Canada’s economy can be remediedCanadians’ standard of living isn’t growing as quickly as per capita gross domestic product (GDP). The reason: our dollar has been declining against the currency of our biggest trading partner, the United States. While some of that is because the U.S. dollar has risen against most currencies around the world, a lot of it is…

How to save Newfoundlanders from Muskrat Falls disaster

The hydroelectric project mess in Newfoundland and Labrador requires some hard choices. But taxpayers deserve and need some relief

How to save Newfoundlanders from Muskrat Falls disasterThe citizens and taxpayers of Newfoundland and Labrador received important news late in 2018: an autopsy of the horrific financial debacle at Churchill Falls and the beginning of an inquiry into the questionable new Muskrat Falls hydroelectric project. The long legal battle has ended over the Joey Smallwood era’s unprofitable Churchill Falls contract, which the…

Socialism at root of the green movement

Recent global developments cast doubt on the motives and methods of the most ardent proponents of global warming

Socialism at root of the green movementThe headlong rush in Canada to punitive carbon taxes, and restrictions on production, transport and consumption of coal, oil and natural gas, may take a much-needed pause. That’s due to the SNC-Lavalin affair dragging down the federal government, the resignation of a key leader of the World Bank, and a new head of the presidential…