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| March 31, 2015
Photo: Paul VanDerWerf/flickr
| March 19, 2015
Columnists

Will falling oil prices create a federal deficit? It doesn't matter.

Photo: Carissa Rogers/flickr

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Harper's terrible plan for Canada

Photo: pmwebphotos/flickr
Harper always said you wouldn't be able to recognize Canada after he was done with it... and boy was he right!

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Columnists

Stripping the national cupboard bare: Harper's plan for Canada

Photo: pmwebphotos/flickr

The Harper government's anti-democratic actions have been so numerous, it's easy to lose track of them.

I almost forgot, for instance, about the way it clamped down on that little bird-watching group in southwestern Ontario, putting its charitable status under surveillance after the group raised concerns about government-approved chemicals damaging bee colonies.

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Columnists

What happens when oil prices go down instead of up

Photo: Sten Dueland/flickr

Luck plays a part in any political career. Napoleon famously asked of a general recommended to him for his military prowess: "so he is good -- but is he lucky?"

A barrel of oil that was selling in the US$110 range last summer, now sells for less than US$70. That was not the future Stephen Harper and his ruling Conservatives expected when the party leader touted Canada as an energy superpower, based on massive petroleum reserves -- the world's third largest after Saudi Arabia and Venezuela -- locked away in the bitumen sands of Alberta.

But there is good news for the Conservatives in the bad news.

Lower gasoline and heating oil prices will put money into the pockets of strapped Canadian workers, helping to drive up consumption and employment.

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Photo: Book_Maiden/flickr
| November 20, 2014
| November 14, 2014

Privatization: Stealing from the public since 1980

Photo: Rob Swatski/flickr
In the 1980s governments began selling off public assets to private corporations, in a practice called privatization. It should have been called theft, since it amounted to stealing from the public.

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Privatization: New ways of profiting at public expense

Photo: Rob Swatski/flickr

In the 1980s governments began selling off public assets to private corporations. Government debt and deficits were the excuse. Citizen-owned wealth, held in trust by governments was transferred to profit-seeking companies. Public inheritance was turned into a one-time payment applied to the provincial or federal debt.

This practice was called privatization. It should have been called theft, since it amounted to stealing from the public what belonged to it.

The only way the practice of "selling the house to pay the mortgage" made any sense was if you were the one buying the house.

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