The (Right) News Rundown
- The budget is geared for "everyday folks". This brings the following:
- A 28.6b budget deficit.
- $5.2b for skills development.
- $3b for support of innovation over the next 5 years.
- 5% increase in EI premiums up to $1.68 per $100 of insurable earnings.
- The "good news" is that the budget plans to reduce the federal debt to GDP ratio over the course of the Liberal mandate. Shrinking from 31.5% to 30.9% by 2022.
- There's only $5.7b new spending over 6 years. $3b of which is an economic contingency fund.
- There remains no plan to return to balance.
- The House of Commons voted Thursday afternoon to condemn “Islamophobia and all forms of systemic racism and religious discrimination” but the vote for the controversial M-103 was not unanimous.
- Liberals, New Democrats, and Green Party MP Elizabeth May were in favour; most Conservative and all Bloc Quebecois MPs were opposed.
- The vote was 201 for and 91 against.
- Two Conservative MPs voted in favour: leadership candidate Michael Chong and Ontario MP Bruce Stanton.
- Liberals, including Khalid, maintain that the motion would in no way infringe on speech rights and would instead be a powerful symbol of solidarity with Muslim Canadians.
- “Motion No. 103 serves as a catalyst for Canadians to speak out against discrimination and be heard where they may not have been heard before,” Khalid said on Tuesday.
- Khalid’s motion changes no existing laws nor does it create any new laws.
- And yet, the Angus Reid poll finds that three in 10 of those surveyed believed Khalid’s motion is, in fact, “a threat to Canadians’ freedom of speech.”
- Alberta Premier Rachel Notley says she wouldn’t bring in a provincial sales tax without seeking a mandate from voters.
- Alberta has some of the same budgetary problems, but Notley says a sales tax is not something that can be pulled out of a back pocket without first campaigning on it.
- “An issue like a sales tax is something that, quite frankly, you need to put to the population,” Notley said Tuesday. “You can’t just pull it out of your back pocket without ever giving them any heads up or any opportunity to engage in it.”
- She says bringing in a PST in Alberta might be talked about in the next election, but she won’t move on it before that.
The Firing Line
- Global Affairs has instructed diplomatic missions in the United States to stop using life-size cardboard cut-outs of the prime minister to promote Canada.The order follows the revelation last week that prime ministerial replicas turned up at an event last June organized by the Canadian consulate in Atlanta and earlier this month at a Canadian music festival in Austin TX. The Canadian embassy in Washington also rush-ordered a cut-out of its own for use at Canada Day celebrations last year, at a cost of $147.79, including $72.80 for next-day delivery. It’s not clear if the missions ever had departmental permission to use the cardboard cut-outs.
- Anna Gibbs, senior events production manager at the Washington embassy, was excited about the prospect of putting Trudeau’s image on display. “I think this will be a hoot and extremely popular and go well with our Snapchat filter,” she wrote in an email. While some of her colleagues felt the magnified photo of Trudeau in a black suit, black shirt and silver tie “doesn’t seem very prime ministerial,” Gibbs gushed: “Looks (oh so) fine to me!”
- This story was released a day before the Liberal budget was dropped upon us (and got more headlines than it too) and received continuing coverage through the week by many outlets including The Province, National Post, The Globe and Mail, Global News, CBC, and many others, oftentimes with the story text being the same across all platforms.
- Why are we covering this ridiculous story then, you say? What might be a humorous or silly article to some is actually a scathing indictment of how amalgamated the news media is in Canada, and how if the big media groups like Postmedia and Quebecor really want to push a so called news story onto the Canadian population, they can easily do so.
Word of the Week
1 a thing done successfully, typically by effort, courage, or skill: to reach this stage is a great achievement.
2 the process or fact of achieving something: the achievement of professional recognition | assessing ability in terms of academic achievement | a sense of achievement.
How to Find Us
Episode Title: No Room for Gushing
Teaser: A look at Canada’s 2017 Federal Budget and its allocation of funds. M103 has been passed but to what end? Premier Notley says a PST in Alberta needs a mandate. Meanwhile, the media misdirects on Snapchat and cardboard cutouts of the Prime Minister.
Recorded Date: March 25, 2017
Release Date: March 25, 2017
Edit Notes: None