By: Clement Nocos
(Full disclosure, I was one of the nearly 2000 delegates in Montreal this weekend for the party’s first policy convention since Jack Layton’s passing in 2011. Pardon the partisanship.)
I would like to briefly point out to readers something that has irked me this past weekend regarding the NDP’s position on the values and principles it is supposed to be basing its policies and goals off of. Headlines such as ‘NDP votes to take ‘socialism’ out of party constitution’, ‘NDP tempers historical socialist rhetoric by adopting new mission statement’, and most other titles have gone on to paint a divisive narrative in the party.
Much of the ink spilled regarding the ‘abandonment of socialism’ by the NDP is in reference to the preamble of the party constitution that sets the parameters of policy. Often described as a mission statement, the preamble is described as having not made any mention of socialism and that the party has now drifted rightward for a chance at forming government in 2015.
But many arguments against the NDP and its ‘abandonment of socialism’ have formed for many people who are now reacting across the Internet without ever having actually read the preamble. So is socialism missing from the preamble? Well, read on:
By: Martin Pharand
Liberal leadership hopeful Marc Garneau announced recently that he would reverse the Federal Government’s restrictive Arctic research information regulations. These regulations have come under attack by both Canadian and American researchers who say the regulations limit the freedom with which scientific information is made available.
Although this issue may seem black and white for some, the central reason why the government maintains the right to impose confidentiality agreements is because of its extensive involvement in Arctic research projects. Assistant Deputy Minister from the Department of Fisheries and Oceans’ Ecosystems and Ocean Science Sector (a classic mouthful!) defended the regulations by saying they streamline departmental publication procedures, focusing specifically on matters of intellectual property.
By: Martin Pharand
I first heard of social impact bonds (SIBs) when I attended an IPAC conference in Toronto, in late November. The purpose of the conference was to introduce new professionals in the public sector with the sector’s future challenges, and then run a brief workshop on some tools to overcome them. The most formidable challenge presented at the conference, and that we are living today, is the need to cut program spending. In the face of this, SIBs were presented as a potential solution to cut costs in the realm of social policy. The man who introduced the idea was one Howard Yeung, a marketing guy representing Deloitte’s GovLab, a public sector innovation think tank. (Deloitte’s own document is the best place to start understanding SIBs)