Tuesday, December 21, 2010

11 Policies For Canada in 2011

People keep saying that Canadian politics are stale and boring. Michael Ignatieff needs some ideas just to get people talking. So, here's a quick list of 11 things that likely won't get done in 2011 but should be done:
  1. Raise the GST to 6%. This one is fairly straight forward. The government needs to close the deficit hole and the faster the better. The GST cuts made in the last five years were too expensive. Hike the GST. It's the easiest way to raise taxes without damaging the economy to severely.
  2. Start a high-speed rail connection for the Quebec City-Windsor corridor. Yes, this will add to the deficit but much like adding an addition to a house is a good reason to bump up a mortgage, high sped rail in Canada is worth the debt burden.
  3. Double the number of foreign student visas available by 2020. Why? Well first, it would really piss off Maclean's. Second, foreign students pay 2 to 3 times more for university than Canadians. That means universities have more money and don't need to hike tuition for Canadians or ask the government for more money. Finally, with US student visas becoming harder and harder to come by, the world's best and brightest are looking for somewhere to study. Why not Canada?
  4. Make the House of Commons as rep by pop as constitutionally possible. Being a nation, doesn't mean you're more important. Either that or pass a resolution in the house declaring English Canada a nation.
  5. You know what would save more money than eliminating the penny? Eliminating the senate.
  6. Raise the GST to 7% and give the extra cent on the dollar to the city where it was spent. Cities are massively underfunded, particularly our core cities which provide services to non-residents while receiving no tax revenue in exchange.
  7. Cut landing fees at Canadian airports. This would be a boost to tourism and business. Why is Canada the most expensive place to land a plane?
  8. End the mission in Afghanistan. Why exactly are we training an army for Hamid Karzai? He's proven to be corrupt and two faced at the best of times. Do we really think he'll get better once NATO leaves?
  9. Side the with the developing world in the Doha round of the WTO. Pledge to reduce or eliminate agricultural tariffs and subsidies, if the rest of the developed world comes around. All the foreign aid in the world won't do as much as opening the world's markets to their goods. Almost every developed country started with a strong export driven agricultural sector.
  10. Get an inter-provincial agreement to make building codes more environmentally friendly. Maybe we don't need to go as far as a solar panel on every roof, but no new building should need to be improved on things like insulation.
  11. Don't use the notwithstanding clause to uphold current prostitution laws. Even if you don't think a regulated prostitution industry would be safer for everyone involved, can you say tax revenue?

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