Allie and David are joined by Travis Kann to talk about the fall economic update, CETA (again), the Liberal government’s pay-to-play scandal, and of course, the American election.
Fall Economic Update
Finance Minister Bill Morneau announced that the Liberal government will continue with its deficit spending plan. Earlier in the week he announced an additional $81 billion for things like infrastructure and transit, that will be spent over the next 11 years. This includes the creation of a new infrastructure bank. While not surprising, the announcement was met with criticism from the Conservatives – who say the Liberals have failed to create any new jobs but continue to spend, and the NDP – who say that increased infrastructure spending will mean increased privatization to balance it out.
CETA, Take Two
With some back-and-forth action and a signed deal, the government – and specifically Minster of International Trade, Chrystia Freeland – can rest a bit easier. The 1,600-page document was ratified this week, and Canadians were paying attention. But it wasn’t all celebrating: online, criticism focused on how much power corporations are given in the deal and the general feeling was that the trade agreement will only help the rich get richer. Additionally, with the deal being seven years in the making, most of the praise for the dealing finally going through was directed at the former Conservative administration, rather than the current Liberal government.
The Liberal government just can’t seem to shake its elitist reputation. With the Conflicts of Interest and Ethics Commissioner as well as the Lobbying Commissioner both investigating ticket prices for government events, the Liberals are having to defend throwing parties. Tickets for events featuring cabinet members cost roughly around $1,500, causing critics to cry favouritism – with the average Canadian not able to afford the hefty cost, the argument is that there is preferential access to ministers for the rich, allowing them to throw around their influence. However, while it seems dramatic and scandalous, it’s getting much more play in the House and the media than it is with the general population.