US Government Again Reduces Bank Oversight, 10 Years After The 2008 Global Financial Collapse

After limited debate the US Senate overwhelmingly approved a further reduction in “Dodd-Frank” banking regulations introduced in 2010 to avoid another 2008 style bank generated economic collapse. Dodd-Frank‘s primary mechanism for doing this was to require financial institutions that were “too big to fail” to withstand stress tests.  The idea being that if your bank was going to need a government bail out in the event of failure, effectively making you and me the banks insurance company, that such banks…

Should Disposable Single Use Plastic Bags Be Banned?

There has been much talk in the recent decade about banning disposable plastic bags.  The basic argument is that consumer grade disposable single use plastic bags are the root cause widespread environmental damage but have ready alternatives, so why are will still using them? As is often the case with political issues, there is no simple answer to the question “Should single use plastic bags be banned?”.  Below are some of the facts and you can decide for yourself if…

How We Know The Trump Campaign Did Not Criminally Collude With the Russian Government

Let me start with the obligatory, I do not particularly like Donald Trump, believe much of what he says or think his campaign was shinny clean.  That being said I do like to listen to both facts and common sense, so let’s go: How We Know Trump’s Campaign Did Not Collude With the Russian Government: There are a few key points to consider when thinking about the claims that the Trump Campaign for President of the United States in 2016…

Oil & Gas: Why ‘Keep It In The Ground’ Is A Formula For Environmental Disaster

The environmental lobby has mislead many well intentioned companies and intelligent individuals with the “keep it in the ground movement”.   That logic only applies to “western societies” and has sadly resulted in serious efforts to block even the cleanest Oil & Gas projects for the last decade.  The most recent tactic is to block the infrastructure required to make Oil & Gas functional; in particular pipelines are being opposed at every turn. These next two points should clearly demonstrate…

Are Pipelines Really The Safest Way To Transport Oil & Gas?

Having worked at a few pipeline companies, I know they take safety and spills very seriously but we see pipeline bursts and their resulting spills with frequency in the news so the question lingers: Are pipelines safe? Let’s start by stating an obvious fact that no-one WANTS a pipeline or any other serious infrastructure (power lines, rail lines, highways…) in their back yard but without such infrastructure our modern world would grind to a halt.  If we can agree on…

VIDEO: Former Canadian Prime Minister Brian Mulroney Tells US Senate To ‘Thanks It’s Lucky Stars For Canada’ and NAFTA

While testifying on NAFTA in front of the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee, former Canadian Prime Minister told them: “Canada is privileged to have the United States as a neighbor and friend.  And the United States should thank its lucky stars, everyday, that they have Canada on their northern boarder. This is is the most successful and peaceful bilateral agreement in world history” “Canada is privileged to have the United States as a neighbor and friend.  And the United States should…

Why Canada Does Not Need a Dispute Mechanism in NAFTA

One of the most contentious issues between Canada and the United States on North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) is chapters 11, 19 and 20 the dispute mechanisms.  Chapter 19 is the one most are fired up about: …binational panel of five arbiters, agreed upon by both parties, who will determine whether or not the duties have merit based on U.S. domestic laws. Source: macleans.ca/opinion/why-naftas-chapter-19-is-worth-fighting-for/  CANADIAN ARGUMENT FOR THE NAFTA DISPUTE MECHANISM: Canada has politely stated that the United States is…

Trump Brings in 30% Tariff on Solar Panels, Temporarily Killing .25M US Jobs

On Monday January 22, 2018, the Trump administration brought in a 30% tax on imported solar panels.   This new solar tax will last four years and decrease over time to 15% in its last year. “Over the last 5 years, nearly 30 American solar manufacturers collapsed; today the President is sending a message that American innovation and manufacturing will not be bullied out of existence without a fight… This is a step forward for this high-tech solar manufacturing industry we…

VIDEO: Short Summary of What is Happening With Net Neutrality in the US?

First world governments around the world, including Canada  have come down on the side of Net Neutrality (the idea that internet providers can not advance or block one website or stream).  The notable exception to this is the United States under President Trump’s appointed FCC leader (and former Verizon executive) Ajit Pai, which has eliminated the Obama era rules protecting an open internet in December 2017. The Republican / Ajit Pai / Trump argument is that the infrastructure is owned by…

How To Fix the Post Office: Alternating Day Delivery & Community Lockers

The US Postal Service lost $5.6B in 2016.  Today the Liberal Canadian Federal Government announced that it would not reinstate home delivery of mail and all of the pundits cried… on both sides (see video at the bottom of this message). It is predicted that Canada Post will be loosing $700M per year in the near future.   These types of numbers are large enough that citizens just don’t understand them but rest assured, in the end, citizens are going to…

The Poor Are Getting Much Richer In Canada

In a world of ever increasing political division in which those on the ‘right’ side of the spectrum are forever vilified for cutting social programs and making tough choices to balance budgets, it was quite refreshing to see that under a Conservative federal government in Canada, the poor became much less so. Quartz research released a study of Statistics Canada data titled “The American dream still exists—in Canada”.  It showed that between 2013 and 2016 poorest 20% grew TWICE as fast…

7 US States Already Allow GM’s New ‘Cruise’ FULLY Autonomous Car Service

Autonomous cars and trucks are steaming at us at a surprisingly rapid pace.  Fully autonomous vehicles are not the stuff of 2025, they are the stuff of late 2018.  Seven US States already allow GM, Tesla, Uber and other autonomous car makers to drive limited numbers of vehicles with no driver.  In Canada, Ontario allows autonomous vehicles in approved cities and towns. GM executives told investors in 2016 that by 2025, autonomous vehicle cost reductions and increased consumer adoption would…

VIDEO: The Price of Carbon

Do you want to understand Global Warming without the political hype? Dr. David Maenz has written and important book for 2018 explaining the science of global warming, it’s impacts and viable solutions. The Price of Carbon is an easy read. You don’t have to be a climate scientist to understand his clear explanations and simple charts. The book includes a brief history of the earth, where we are today, future climate scenarios and how to fix the problems. It also…

What Trump Got Right About US Foreign Policy:

Much has been said about the Trump administrations lack of a coherent foreign policy plan.  He seems to have changed to tone to an us vs them winner takes all approach without considering even the near term negative consequences of such an approach. Even if that is correct, Trump definitely got something right on US Foreign Policy: US citizens stopped buying in the notional that the US should be the ‘Global Global Good Guy’.  Somewhere in the George Bush, Bill…