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Opinion Piece from Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer

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5 minute read

OP-ED: FIGHTING FOR ENERGY JOBS

I had one of the most inspiring days of my political life this week in Nisku, Alberta.

I was there as an endless line of trucks rolled through town in a show of support for Alberta’s energy sector. The convoy stretched back almost 22 kilometres, with hundreds of men and women making their voices heard loud and clear. Heading to a townhall meeting to talk to these struggling workers, I got out of my car and walked the rest of the way.

It was emotional. There’s a lot of anger, and it’s justified. People have lost jobs. Families have been broken up. The pain is real, but it’s going unaddressed by Justin Trudeau’s government. That’s why so many hardworking Canadians came out with a single message for Justin Trudeau: They don’t want his handouts. They want to go back to work.

I went to Alberta this week to respond to this impassioned plea for help. I went to look these men and women in the eye, and tell them that we’re with them, and we’re fighting for them. Not just Conservatives, but people from across the country that understand how important our energy sector is to Canada’s economy. They’re not alone.

Everyone in Nisku understood why they were there, and why the situation in Canada’s energy sector is so grim.

Justin Trudeau is trying to phase out their jobs. An industry that has sustained families and given them their livelihood for generations is being shut down by a prime minister who no longer hides his disdain for their work. In just three years, Trudeau has killed two major pipeline projects, and thrown $4.5 billion in taxpayer money into another that he can’t build. Meanwhile, his government’s Bill C-69 will put the energy sector out of business for good by ensuring that no pipeline project will see the light of day – ever again.

The consequences of Trudeau’s disastrous policies are felt most strongly in Alberta but will affect every part of Canada. Our national economy is losing billions of dollars because we don’t have enough pipeline capacity to get our resources to those who want to buy them. Canadian oil is now selling at a major discount, costing us jobs and investment. That is why Alberta’s government took the drastic step of cutting production, and why the ultimate responsibility for that move lies with Justin Trudeau. His pipeline vetoes, carbon taxes and added red tape are the cause of this lack of pipeline capacity, and the dire consequences that have followed.

The prosperity that once flowed from Alberta’s energy sector to communities across our country is a distant memory under Justin Trudeau.

 

At the same time, all he’s offered suffering workers and their families is a small government handout. That money might feed families for a few weeks, but the pipelines that get Canadian energy to markets will feed us all for a generation.

With Justin Trudeau doubling down on his destructive carbon tax and rejecting every attempt to revive struggling pipeline projects, it is clear that he will never take any meaningful step to offer help.

That’s why I outlined my Conservative plan to get out energy sector back on track. When Conservatives form government we are going to cancel the carbon tax, and repeal Bill C-69. But that’s just our first step. We will also establish firm timelines for pipeline approvals, invoke constitutional authority to build major projects, and eliminate foreign interference in the approvals process.

Justin Trudeau has done historic damage to Canada’s energy sector. And after this week, everyone understands that it’s going to take a change of government to put an end to this crisis and get our energy sector back to work.

Hon. Andrew Scheer

Leader of Canada’s Conservatives

After 15 years as a TV reporter with Global and CBC and as news director of RDTV in Red Deer, Duane set out on his own 2008 as a visual storyteller. During this period, he became fascinated with a burgeoning online world and how it could better serve local communities. This fascination led to Todayville, launched in 2016.

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Economy

Federal government could balance budget and reduce tax rates with 2.3% spending reduction over two years

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From the Fraser Institute

By Jake Fuss and Grady Munro

If the federal government reduced program spending by only 2.3 per cent over two years and eliminated a host of tax expenditures, it could balance the budget and reduce personal income tax rates affecting most Canadians, finds a new
study published today by the Fraser Institute, an independent, non-partisan Canadian public policy think-tank.

“With modest spending reductions and tax reform, the federal government can create the fiscal room to provide tax rate reductions that would benefit most Canadians,” said Jake Fuss, director of fiscal studies at the Fraser Institute and co-author of A New Federal Fiscal Framework for Canada.

Specifically, if the government implemented this spending reduction—and eliminated 49 federal personal income tax expenditures (tax credits, tax exemptions, etc.), which do little to improve economic growth yet reduce government revenue—it could eliminate the three middle federal personal income tax rates (20.5 per cent, 26.0 per cent, 29.0 per cent) and reduce the top rate from 33.0 per cent to its previous level of 29.0 per cent.

As a result, with only two remaining rates, nearly all Canadians would pay a marginal personal income tax rate of 15 per cent. And the federal government could balance the budget by 2026/27.

“In light of Canada’s dim economic prospects and lack of tax competitiveness, the federal government should move away from the status quo and pursue a pro-growth fiscal strategy,” Fuss said.

“At a time when affordability is top of mind, it’s time for Ottawa to reduce tax rates and restore discipline to federal finances.”

  • Poor government policy has led to a significant deterioration in Canada’s federal finances over the last decade. The introduction of new and expanded government programs has caused federal spending to increase substantially, resulting in persistent deficits and rising debt.
  • Canada also maintains markedly uncompetitive personal income taxes relative to many other advanced economy jurisdictions. This hinders Canada’s ability to attract and retain highly skilled workers, entrepreneurs, and business owners.
  • Canada must make meaningful policy reforms by pursuing reductions in both federal spending and tax rates to address the current fiscal and economic challenges.
  • The federal government should eliminate 49 federal PIT tax expenditures and remove the three middle income tax rates of 20.5, 26.0, and 29.0 percent while reducing the top marginal PIT rate from 33.0 to 29.0 percent.
  • The federal government can introduce a comprehensive tax reform package and achieve a balanced budget by 2026/27 through reducing nominal annual program spending by 2.3 percent over a two-year period.
  • Returning to balanced budgets should be viewed as a starting point rather than the end goal.
  • Imposing a Tax and Expenditure Limitation (TEL) rule that caps growth in program spending at the rate of inflation plus population growth would be the next step for federal finances over the long-term.
  • This would allow for budget surpluses in subsequent years after achieving the initial balanced budget and ensure discipline in government spending for the foreseeable future.
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conflict

Communist China makes shocking number of crucial US military equipment components: report

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From LifeSiteNews

By Andrew Powell

From 2005 to 2023, Chinese manufacturers in the U.S. supply chain have grown from around 12,000 to almost 45,000.

A new report details how deep the People’s Republic of China has embedded itself within the U.S. supply chain, especially for military machinery. While U.S. lawmakers have been calling for an end to this for some years, China’s domination continues unabated.

According to the report, China’s presence in the U.S. supply chain has been steadily rising for the better part of almost 20 years. From 2005 to 2023, Chinese manufacturers in the U.S. supply chain have grown from around 12,000 to almost 45,000.

The use of forced labor and dangerous working conditions gives China the ability to quickly churn out products, while keeping cost savings at a premium.

Between 2014 and 2023, the data presents a concerning trend of China outpacing U.S. supply chains across almost all industries, by 1,800 percent in some instances – including electronics, transportation, materials and chemicals, and industrial equipment.

A large number of Chinese semiconductors are used in critical military platforms, accounting for around 40 percent of all U.S. Department of Defense weapons systems and infrastructure, and are further linked to military supply chains such as Patriot air-defense missiles and B-2 bombers.

For example, a Lockheed Martin missile factory situated in Alabama produces Javelin anti-tank weapons which use more than 200 semiconductors in each weapon. This equates to thousands of Chinese-made semiconductors within U.S. weaponry.

“U.S. companies at the bottom of the supply chain pyramid often source these parts from China in open market transactions. As a result, many essential components in sensitive U.S. military systems now come from China. Countless major weapons platforms are vulnerable,” the report states.

The report notes China now has a larger naval force than the U.S., with 340 new warships, and is on track to reach 400 by 2025, and 440 by 2030. Currently, U.S. Navy has under 300 warships.

Furthermore, China tops the U.S. in shipbuilding capabilities, with 17 naval shipyards in China having the ability to produce new warships, compared with five naval shipyards in the U.S.

To alleviate this, the report points out the U.S. could use its allies – which would include Japan and South Korea – to open shipyards to assist with ship production, bringing vital technology and techniques with them. However, the report states the U.S. government is reluctant to invest more funding into ship manufacturing.

Some state leaders are fighting back against this trend. In January, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis announced the Sunshine State will invest over $380 million into semiconductor manufacturing. Over $100 million will be focused on developing Florida’s semiconductor “talent-pipeline” with significant investment into state colleges and universities, including the University of Florida’s Semiconductor Institute.

“Industries like semiconductor manufacturing and advanced packaging support our national security and create economic opportunities in our state,” DeSantis said in a statement from his office.

WND contacted GOP members of the Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs about the report on Chinese made military components, but did not receive a response at the time of publishing.

Reprinted with permission from the WND News Center.

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