Accidental Deliberations: New column day

Here, on this week’s Canada Pension Plan announcement – and the Wall government’s surprising decision to merely delay rather than outright obstruct a national boost to retirement security. For further reading…– Kevin Milligan, Sheila Block, Adam Mayers and the Canadian Press each offer useful looks at what the CPP expansion means. And Milligan has also ...

Montreal Simon: The Cons and the Never-Ending War on the Poor

You might think Lisa Raitt and her Cons might stop attacking the agreement to enhance the Canada Pension Plan now that a deal has been reached.But no, Raitt is still on the offensive… Now suggesting it's the work of Big Brother.While Big Business is calling it the road to economic ruin.Read more »

Montreal Simon: The Con Plan to Hurt the Old Goes Down in Flames

I can only imagine the frenzied state the scary Con Lisa Raitt must be in right now. But you can be sure it isn't pretty.And she is no doubt still howling at the moon, like her miserable leader Rona Ambrose. But it won't do those ghastly Cons any good, because their desperate attempts to sabotage ...

Alberta Politics: Explaining how the right wing echo chamber operates … operates … operates … The Strange Case of the Canada Pension Plan

PHOTOS: “Alright, everyone, here’s what we’re gonna say: ‘Expanding the CPP is a solution in search of a problem.’ Everybody got that? Fraser? Check! APEC? Check! CFIB? Check! Taxpayers? Check! … ” Actual right-wing echo chamber conference calls may not unfold exactly as described. Below: What you actually see behind the curtain. With Canada’s premiers ...

Montreal Simon: The Canada Pension Plan and the Cruelty of the Cons

As long as Stephen Harper was in power there was never any hope of enhancing the Canada Pension Plan.Because he always claimed the economy was too fragile to afford it, he didn't like the idea of pensions, and believed that Canadians should save for their own retirement.So I'm glad that now that he is gone, ...

Alberta Politics: When Tories, the Fraser Institute and media team up to attack plans to improve the CPP, you have to know it needs fixing!

ILLUSTRATIONS: A luxurious retirement? Do you get the feeling that ship may have sailed? Well, rich conservatives and their flunkies want you to think that a better Canada Pension Plan is a bad idea anyway. Below: Conservative Party of Canada Finance Critic Lisa Raitt. Wow! Talk about a full-court press! All the usual suspects are ...

Accidental Deliberations: Saturday Morning Links

Assorted content for your weekend reading. – Phillipe Orliange discusses the significance of inequality in the developing world as a problem for both fairness and economic development: The question of inequality has become so important because societal cohesion broadly depends upon it. It is not normal for 1% of the population to possess as much ...

Bill Longstaff: Paul Martin—Canada’s greatest finance minister?

Paul Martin’s official prime ministerial portrait was unveiled on Parliament Hill on Wednesday. During the ceremony, he was referred to as the greatest finance minister in our history—lavish praise indeed. But deserving? I believe so. He did at least three things that, in my mind, place him in that rarefied position. First, he balanced the ...

Bill Longstaff: Paul Martin—Canada’s greatest finance minister?

Paul Martin’s official prime ministerial portrait was unveiled on Parliament Hill on Wednesday. During the ceremony, he was referred to as the greatest finance minister in our history—lavish praise indeed. But deserving? I believe so. He did at least three things that, in my mind, place him in that rarefied position. First, he balanced the ...

Montreal Simon: Stephen Harper and the Great War on Pensions

Well there he was in Poland yesterday, relentlessly pursuing the ethnic vote again, by portraying himself as the fearless leader of the Great War on Russia.And the champion of freedom and democracy.Even as the Senate rammed through his totalitarian anti-terror bill.Which will kill OUR freedoms and turn us into a police state,But at least on the Great War ...

Accidental Deliberations: Saturday Morning Links

Assorted content for your weekend reading. – Andrew Jackson weighs in on the need for our public policy to ensure a fair initial distribution of income and power in order to ensure that further redistribution is sustainable: The issue of how to deal with rising inequality and the squeezed middle-class has recently moved to the ...

Montreal Simon: Stephen Harper and the Great Con Pension Scam

You might think that Stephen Harper has done enough to hurt poor seniors. By making them wait until they are sixty-seven to receive Old Age Security payments. And treating our veterans like dirt.You might think that his Great Con Debate scam would have satiated his corrupt instincts.But no, now he has ordered his dilapidated stooge Joe Oliver to flog ...

Accidental Deliberations: Monday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material to start your week. – Justin Wolfers discusses new research showing how location has a dramatic effect on the future of young children. And it’s particularly striking that the negatives of moving seem to outweigh any positive effects of a surrounding neighbourhood for older children – suggesting that if there’s any truth to ...

Political Eh-conomy: Podcast: Pension tensions and privatizations

https://politicalehconomy.files.wordpress.com/2015/05/podcast150501-pensions-and-privatization.mp3   I have two guests on two different topics today. First up: Kevin Skerrett, a pension researcher at the Canadian Union of Public Employees. I spoke with him about the role of pensions in financialized capitalism. Don’t let the word pensions scare you off, this is a conversation that gets to the heart of how ...

Accidental Deliberations: On active demolition

Shorter Fraser Institute: It has come to our attention that due to the Canada Pension Plan, the rabble might actually enjoy the benefit of high-return investments normally reserved to our corporate overlords. Clearly this must end.

Montreal Simon: Why I Might Vote for the Liberals in the Ontario Election.

With just two days before the Ontario election, and still not having decided whether to vote for the NDP or the Liberals, I decided to check out the lawn signs on the island, which is part of Trinity-Spadina riding.And the results were no surprise. The island is still mostly orange, with a touch of green. The ...

Alberta Diary: CFIB members please post: ‘Money from public sector wages & pensions NOT wanted here!’

CFIB AstroTurf technicians roll out part of their campaign against improved pensions for Canadians, a plan certain to harm the group’s naïve supporters. Below: A suggested sign for the windows of CFIB-member businesses. Whew! That was a close one! We almost improved the Canada Pension Plan! So says the so-called Canadian Federation of Independent Business. ...

Montreal Simon: Stephen Harper and the Nightmare Before Christmas

Well I finally got to screen Stephen Harper's year end interview with Global TV, and it was one of the weirdest interviews I've ever seen.And one of the most chilling. For there was Harper sitting in what looked like a set from A Christmas Story.But sounding like a character out of the Nightmare Before Christmas. Read ...

Political Eh-conomy: The in-and-out trick: Thoughts on Canada Post, CPP and your child’s breakfast

The past few days have not been great for public services in Canada. Canada Post will be phasing out home delivery of mail. Expansion of the Canada Pension Plan was scuttled at the finance ministers’ meeting. In the grand scheme of things, however, these are not extreme cutbacks. It’s not as if Canada Post is ...

Political Eh-conomy: Notes on pensions and risk

Canada’s finance ministers are meeting this weekend and a proposal to expand the CPP is at the top of the agenda. If implemented, this proposal would bolster an important public program at a time when public programs are under attack and the public sector as whole is shrinking. There are many good arguments in favour of strong public pensions, ...

Montreal Simon: The Con War on the Canada Pension Plan

It's my nightmare vision of a Con jungle. A country full of seniors living in poverty and misery. A country where the old and the poor have no present, and the young have no future.A nightmare that became even more real today, when the Cons killed an NDP proposal to expand the Canada Pension Plan.Even though ...

Autonomy For All: Government That Works: CPP is Healthy Say Actuaries

Every 3 years the Canada Pension Plan is analyzed by professional actuaries (with peer review by independent actuaries picked by the UK government) to analyze its financies against the best practice means of assessing likely future pay outs and revenue.  Once again, the 26th such report finds the CPP is healthy over the “long term” ...

Autonomy For All: Government That Works: CPP is Healthy Say Actuaries

Every 3 years the Canada Pension Plan is analyzed by professional actuaries (with peer review by independent actuaries picked by the UK government) to analyze its financies against the best practice means of assessing likely future pay outs and revenue.  Once again, the 26th such report finds the CPP is healthy over the “long term” ...

OPSEU Diablogue: CPP reform: Pensions and population health objectives should be linked

There are two accepted axioms in health care: 1. The older you get, the more health care you use. 2. Wealth is closely linked to health, or what policy wonks like to talk about as the “social determinants of health.” … Continue reading →

Politics and its Discontents: The Taint of Ideology

Although I’m sure that I frequently fall victim to it, I am deeply offended by lazy thinking, our seemingly endless capacity to fall back on ideological bromides as a substitute for careful and reasoned consideration of an issue. Instances of such defective cogitation abound, and are especially noticeable in online commentary, where, for example, those ...