VIDEO: What First Nations Really Think About Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain Pipeline Expansion

Support for the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain pipeline continues to rise and now has the support of more than 2/3rds of Canadians.  Further, another poll released on May 18 2018 shows support for the expansion has also continued its surge in BC, now sitting at more than 60% of BC residents.  However, the media has frequently given the impression that First Nations do not support the expansion and that is simply inaccurate. David Chartrand, VP of the Metis National Council points out that nearly all…

The Very Unexpected Way That Blocking Canadian Oil Exports INCREASES The Price of Gas in Canada By $.15 Per Liter

You would expect that if petroleum products can not be efficiently transported to world markets, that there would be an oil and gas oversupply in Canada and that would drive the prices down.  However, it turns out that two factors cause that not the be the case: the majority of large petroleum contracts in Canada (and around the globe) are transacted in US dollars the Canadian dollar is a “petro-currency” meaning that petroleum exports are so important to the economy…

The Unintended Consequences of Government Meddling In the Steel Industry

It is well established that even well intentioned government intervention in industry very often ends up causing more problems than it solves.  Today one of the issues facing the United States is a loss of jobs in the steel industry and so President Trump claimed this is a National Security Issue and so used his unilateral power to impose a 25% tariff on imports of steel into the United States. On its face, this seems like a good idea.  Simplistically,…

Can Alberta Outlast BC If Oil Shipments Are Restricted?

Alberta is used to energy shocks and can quickly adjust to the environment, especially an oversupply.  BC gets 80% of its gasoline from Alberta which cannot possibly be replaced with tanker trucks from the US… because BC does not have any pipelines their either.  Also, yesterday the Premier of Saskatchewan has said his province will also cut off BC if Alberta does. Put simply, BC is completely beholden to Alberta for Energy and Alberta is beholden to BC for very…

The National Infrastructure Act: How The Federal Government Can Get Infrastructure Projects Like The Trans Mountain Pipeline Done Fairly

The current Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain pipeline debacle agonizingly demonstrates that even medium scale infrastructure projects are easily stalemated in Canada.  This has scared away vast sums of foreign direct investment as investors look for easier, more reliable places to put their money. This is a crisis and it appears that the Trudeau Federal Government is taking it seriously.  Prime Minister Trudeau announced yesterday that his government would be introducing legislation to ensure this pipeline is constructed in a timely…

Twinning the Kinder-Morgan Trans Mountain Pipeline Is Now Too Big To Fail

Should the Province of Alberta buy the Trans Mountain Pipeline from Kinder-Morgan if they want to walk away from the project?  That question was posed to Alberta Premier Rachel Notley today and she responded with an emphatic ‘Yes!’. It has become abundantly clear, whether you are for or opposed to this particular pipeline or not, that having the relatively simple twinning of the existing Trans Mountain pipeline fail to be built would signify the end of even medium scale infrastructure…

The Dutch Have Reduced Prison Populations 50% AND Crime 39% in a Decade

In the last decade the Dutch have reduced prison inmate populations by 50% and those sentences average to about 90 days in jail.  Many people expected this drastic reduction of inmates to lead to a notable increase in crime because: Dangerous, proven criminals are being quickly released back onto the street There is virtually no deterrent effect to being jailed in the Netherlands Contrary to this expectation the fact is that Dutch system has also reduced crime by nearly 40%.…

Facebook Reports 86 Million Users Data Sent to Cambridge Analytica & Facebook Will Follow GDPR Regulations World Wide

In the aftermath of the Facebook / Cambridge Analytica scandal, Facebook has upped the reported number of user profiles included from the original number 50 million to 86 million.  Most of those users profiles were from Americans but 660,000 of them were Canadian.  Those are some big numbers. To give credit where credit is due, CEO Mark Zuckerberg just announced that Facebook will be providing security consistent with the new European based “General Data Protection Regulation” (GDPR), to ALL Facebook…

The Top 10 Things Everyone Needs To Know About GDPR

GDPR is the acronym for Europe’s “General Data Protection Regulation” which is the toughest set of personal privacy regulations in the world.  You can see from the GDPR Timeline on the right that companies have had about 3 years to get their systems into compliance, and it comes into full force in May 2018. Below are the top ten things all companies and people need know about GDPR: 1: Does GDPR Apply To Me? GDPR applies only to: CITIZENS of…

Facebook Cambridge Analytica Scandal Is a Crisis For All Online Companies

There is a crisis at Facebook because of the constant negative media coverage of the Cambridge Analytica scandal causing users to question staying on the product and that has caused Facebook stock drop a truly staggering $70B in value in 11 days.  It’s founder, Mark Zuckerberg, owns 28.2% of the company so he has lost $20B personally. There is a also crisis being experienced by some Facebook users that have finally realized Facebook and nearly all other ‘free’ online services…

Should You Have The Right To Know You Are Talking To An AI Bot?

The US congress now has an Artificial Intelligence “Caucus” considering regulating how Artificial Intelligence (AI).  One the items they are looking into is figuring out if citizens should have a right to know that they are talking / chatting with an Artificially Intelligent piece of software or a human. Many people feel tricked when they find out that they have been talking or chatting with an AI when the default assumption has been that people are talking or chatting with…

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…

Will The New Canadian National Projects Review Mechanisms, Resolve Provincial & Municipal Disputes

At the heart of the Canadian Federal Governments announcement today about fixing the process that determines if a large scale project is in the best interest of Canada or not, is a desire to limit ability Provincial, Municipal and interest groups (like ‘First Nations’) to stall approved projects.  The idea is to: increase consultation so everyone’s voice is heard set firm and visible rules for industry so that “goal posts” are not being moved after the fact determine what is…

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…

VIDEO: Highlights of the Canadian Federal Government Carbon Tax

On January 15 2018, the Canadian Federal Government laid out the details of it plan to implement a  $50/tonne carbon tax in proposed legislation named the “Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act”.  The highlights are: The Federal Tax will only apply in Provinces and Territories that do not have a comparable carbon tax already in place That means, as of today, it will apply only to 20% of the Canadian population Specifically those in Saskatchewan, most Atlantic provinces, NWT, Nunavut, Yukon will…