rabble blogs are the personal pages of some of Canada's most insightful progressive activists and commentators. All opinions belong to the writer; however, writers are expected to adhere to our guidelines. We welcome new bloggers -- contact us for details.

No shortage of compelling budget ideas for Finance Minister Bill Morneau

Please chip in to support more articles like this. Support rabble.ca in its summer fundraiser today for as little as $5 per month!

Photo: US Embassy Canada/flickr

Like this column? rabble is reader-supported journalism. Chip in to keep stories like these coming.

New federal finance minister Bill Morneau has invited Canadians to submit their ideas and priorities for the next Federal Budget. People are welcome to share their suggestions via email, a survey and social media on a site the government has created here.

The finance minister says, "I am embarking on an intensive cross-Canada conversation with Canadians to shape our first budget," and he has indicated the government is especially keen to hear people's ideas for infrastructure projects that can get up and running as soon as possible. Good stuff.

Of course there is no shortage of great ideas in the CCPA's 2015 Alternative Federal Budget, and the 2016 AFB will be out soon.

There is of course an urgent need for more social housing, and here in B.C. I'd love to see a federal commitment in this area that pushes our provincial government to get back into the business of building social housing (hopefully they wouldn't let a cost-sharing opportunity in this sector pass us by). Other areas of social infrastructure are also high priority, such as long-term care facilities for seniors, and new child care spaces.

Post-Paris, a clear focus should be placed on new green infrastructure, so that we can make real our commitment to keep global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees. As the Leap Manifesto has called for, we need:

  • Expanded transit and light rail across Canada.
  • Investments in energy efficient homes and the retrofitting of existing buildings.
  • Support for community-owned renewable energy projects, with Indigenous communities first in line.
  • Investments in local food systems to counter the high price of imports.

And, as I outlined here, if the government plans to keep its commitment to end fossil fuel subsidies, then it ought to rescind the tax credit the Harper government promised to the LNG sector (the previous Conservative government had accepted the LNG industry's dubious argument that it should be treated as a manufacturing industry, qualifying it for a generous capital cost allowance tax break).

The CCPA's Marc Lee has produced an excellent list of key climate priorities for the new federal government here, many with implications for the next budget. And I've offered similar ideas here.

This next budget is a chance to jump-start Canada's transition off fossil fuels and to advance a justice-based clean energy vision, as outlined in the Leap Manifesto and the CCPA's AFB.

Here's hoping.

Photo: US Embassy Canada/flickr

Like this column? rabble is reader-supported journalism. Chip in to keep stories like these coming.

Thank you for reading this story…

More people are reading rabble.ca than ever and unlike many news organizations, we have never put up a paywall – at rabble we’ve always believed in making our reporting and analysis free to all, while striving to make it sustainable as well. Media isn’t free to produce. rabble’s total budget is likely less than what big corporate media spend on photocopying (we kid you not!) and we do not have any major foundation, sponsor or angel investor. Our main supporters are people and organizations -- like you. This is why we need your help. You are what keep us sustainable.

rabble.ca has staked its existence on you. We live or die on community support -- your support! We get hundreds of thousands of visitors and we believe in them. We believe in you. We believe people will put in what they can for the greater good. We call that sustainable.

So what is the easy answer for us? Depend on a community of visitors who care passionately about media that amplifies the voices of people struggling for change and justice. It really is that simple. When the people who visit rabble care enough to contribute a bit then it works for everyone.

And so we’re asking you if you could make a donation, right now, to help us carry forward on our mission. Make a donation today.


We welcome your comments! rabble.ca embraces a pro-human rights, pro-feminist, anti-racist, queer-positive, anti-imperialist and pro-labour stance, and encourages discussions which develop progressive thought. Our full comment policy can be found here. Learn more about Disqus on rabble.ca and your privacy here. Please keep in mind:


  • Tell the truth and avoid rumours.
  • Add context and background.
  • Report typos and logical fallacies.
  • Be respectful.
  • Respect copyright - link to articles.
  • Stay focused. Bring in-depth commentary to our discussion forum, babble.


  • Use oppressive/offensive language.
  • Libel or defame.
  • Bully or troll.
  • Post spam.
  • Engage trolls. Flag suspect activity instead.