The evidence is mounting that the Canadian health care system needs some serious repair. It is most certainly not “the best health care system in the world,” as many Canadians still incorrectly believe. Funding from governments is facing serious constraints, service delivery is fragmented and uneven within provinces and territories and across the country, and demand pressures will only grow with the rise of chronic diseases and with an aging population.
Our intention is to contribute to a positive discussion, involving all Canadians, on how Canada’s foreign policy can be most advantageous to Canadians while meeting our shared values of good governance, social justice, and environmental responsibility. Canada will be better positioned to achieve our economic goals through enduring partnerships based on mutual respect and shared benefits. To succeed, the process must involve Canada’s leaders in business, government and civil society and enjoy active public participation. We see a win-win strategy in viewing other countries as partners in humanitarian, social, economic and environmental progress, rather than simply markets and customers offering revenue opportunities.
The only way Canada is going to thrive in the future is if we rebuild our government into a Parliament with a common goal in mind, we solidify our demographics and restore our military to a powerful state, and secure guarantee socioeconomic benefits for all. We need to live within our means, by controlling government expenditures at all levels, and stop their unconscionable plundering of the taxpayers’ pockets to inflate their salaries and pensions.
Inflation is on rise. Jobs are going away. We need a clear picture, so we can support efforts to get the economy back on track. Issues facing Canada include: the intrusion by the state into private lives; education quality is declining, with exceptionalism deemed unnote-worthy; children raised with false expectations; thought is limited to mainstream beliefs only, e.g. questioning global warming is verboten; the medical system unable to cope with increasing demand; pensioners are going to suffer due to inadequate facilities/ low incomes; terrorism; economy/jobs; judicial system; out-of-date political correctness.
The federal or national government is the central level of government in Canada, and is involved in many aspects of our lives. The federal government must play a role in such things as the provision of social services, the economy, national defence and security, criminal law, foreign affairs and First Nations policy.
There is no doubt whatsoever that the lifeblood of Canada’s workforce begins and ends with small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). These businesses play a massively significant role in the Canadian economy that cannot be overstated and provide the economic engine that drives the entire country.
In fairness, Canadian companies of all sizes have benefited from such things as the Scientific Research and Development Tax Credit. But the business sector would still like nothing better than to procure additional government assistance. One way that has been mentioned quite frequently is a method of preferred procurement. Domestic procurement often drives export credibility, which would by extension help SMEs ramp up their developments on a global scale. As well, more public-private partnerships that allow SMEs to participate can help them flourish and thereby drive innovation.
It is time for Canadians to say enough with the moans and groans from our political leaders and the chattering classes about the dangers of constitutional change and a scary quagmire of federal-provincial negotiations. Constitutional reform is entirely legitimate in the life of a vibrant democracy. The Canadian Senate either needs serious reform or it should be abolished, and whether we like it or not, this requires changes to our Constitution. In refusing to engage the people in constitutional reform, our leaders forget that the Constitution belongs to the people of Canada, not to the federal and provincial governments. They betray an all-too-familiar fear of a healthy democracy, while protecting their executive power at the expense of the people.
The key issues surrounding public-service pension-plan benefits are mostly unspoken, both to their members and to taxpayers. Public-sector unions allow their members to believe the fiction that members contribute a fair share of their own retirement benefits, when really, the vast majority is funded by taxpayers. Few people appreciate how the CPP is folded into public-sector pension benefits: since benefits are “defined” in advance, an increase in CPP benefits reduces the amount that a public-sector pension needs to pay out to retired workers (leaving unchanged the total benefit payout to public-sector retirees). Meanwhile, taxpayers are kept in the dark about the full measure of unfunded future benefits they will have to pay, even as they shoulder more of the burden for their own retirement.
Solutions to our political problems
By committing to principles and policies that will deliver these advantages, Canada’s New Government is setting the stage for economic growth, opportunity and choices for people. Together, we will build a prosperous economy that provides Canadians with what they deserve:good, well-paying jobs; the ability to save more for retirement; the chance to start a new business; the opportunity to help children and grandchildren; and the chance to improve their overall quality of life. Government has an important role to play in creating the right conditions for Canadians and Canadian businesses and organizations to thrive and to be successful.