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Debt: The new four-letter word for seniors

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Columnists

Vultures are circling Canada's health care. Are we prepared to pay the price?

Photo: Tyler Ingram/flickr

There's been lots of attention paid recently to the Canada Pension Plan and how to extend it, alongside news stories and commentary about how adequate or otherwise Canadians' retirement situation will be. The sunshine boys over at the C.D. Howe Institute (a.k.a. the Isn't Capitalism Wonderful Institute -- ICWI) reassure us that everything is just fine and we should just shut up and ignore all the warnings. The author of an ICWI study, one Malcolm Hamilton, observes: "Canadians frequently read that they borrow too much, spend too much, save too little, retire too early and live too long."

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June 1, 2015 |
The proportion of Canadian households in debt and the amount owed has grown in just over a decade according to a new Statistics Canada report.
| May 15, 2015
April 10, 2015 |
A new study has found that Canada has, relative to income, seen the second-highest increase in household debt among developed countries since the 2008 recession.
Columnists

A number is never just a number: Middle-class angst

Photo: fdecomite/flickr

47

 Percentage of Canadians who self-identify as middle class. That's down from almost 70 per cent in 2002. (Source)

$1,600

The decline in median market household income between 2008 and 2011. In 2008 median market family was $49,300. (Source: CANSIM 202-0201)

5

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Photo: Cameron Donaldson/flickr
| April 25, 2014

NDP's big ideas. Right here. Right now.

Photo: flickr/opensourceway

"Dream no little dreams," Tommy Douglas was fond of telling us. As premier of Saskatchewan and leader of the federal NDP, Tommy was true to his words -- delivering the first publicly funded health care system in North America while balancing 17 consecutive budgets.

Decades later, New Democrats are still dreaming big.

In his latest piece, "We need a federal politics of Big Ideas" Tyee and rabble columnist Murray Dobbin rightly points out that successive Liberal and Conservative governments have emptied the federal coffers by doling out billions in wasteful corporate tax giveaways while doing nothing to stop the growing income inequality in our country.

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Columnists

The middle class: The battleground of all politicians

Photo: Peter Klein/flickr

In the U.S., the "M" word has been on the lips of politicians from the left to the right of the political spectrum, albeit for different reasons. President Obama is not an exception. Indeed, he made the mention of the middle-class part of his electoral rhetoric immediately after the 2008 financial crisis and after hundreds of thousands of Americans lost their houses, their American dream.

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Columnists

Calculating household debt after the 2013 federal budget

Photo: Canadian Pacific/Flickr

As both the Bank of Canada and the IMF have now reported, the Canadian economic recovery slowed in early 2013. Sadly, this contains good news.

A return to economic strength would bring an increase in interest rates. This would cause Canadian households deeply in debt to dig down even deeper to make ends meet. With weakness, rate hikes are likely delayed until 2014.

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