Tagged: inequality

Notable Linkage: Canadian Inequality: Recent Developments and Policy Options [PDF]


Our analysis of income inequality in Canada has produced several important findings that should guide any policy developments in this area. First, income inequality at the family level has increased substantially over the past few decades, and policy developments since the mid-1990s have likely reinforced rather than countered this trend. Second, the share of total income going to the top 1 percent has increased dramatically since 1980, mirroring trends in the United States. These high earners are mostly male and highly educated, and while many financial industry workers and executives can be found in the top 1 percent, so too can many professionals such as doctors. Third, the forces driving inequality are varied, ranging from technological change and off-shoring to institutional factors such as the role of unions and minimum wages. Fourth, we find that the experience of women is notably different from that of men; in particular, women have suffered less of the “hollowing out” of th…

Canadian Inequality: Recent Developments and Policy Options [PDF]


Compare and contrast: Corporate vs. Human Development Edition

Canada has slipped out of the top 10 countries listed in the annual United Nation’s human development index — a far cry from the 1990s when it held the first place for most of the decade…When the numbers are adjusted for gender inequality, Canada slumps to 18th place.

Toronto Star, March 14, 2013

Outgoing Bank of Canada governor Mark Carney famously chided corporate Canada this summer for sitting on mountains of “dead money,” the idle dollars on balance sheets that could instead feed economic growth…The running tally of “dead money” in Canada? About $600 billion, or a bracing 32% of Canada’s GDP, according to an estimate quoted in January by RBC Global Asset Management chief economist Eric Lascelles. To put that big number into context, he noted that U.S. cash reserves account for just 9% of the domestic economy. Yet even the U.S. figures are staggeringly large.

Canadian Business, February 12, 2013

Canada’s Economic Action Plan in, er, action.

Time for more corporate tax cuts.


No, you *really* didn’t build that

This is an excellent “lefty rant” from Ian Welsh that deserves highlighting:

The value of our money is not something which is reliant on us as individuals, but is based instead on the productive capacity of our society, something which individuals have almost nothing to do with.  Being born in America or Belgium is worth much more than being born in Nigeria or Bangladesh.  You didn’t choose your parents, you didn’t choose your upraising, you can’t be said to “deserve” much if anything as a result.

Far too many people believe their good fortune was the result of their individual excellence rather than the great cosmic accident of being born in a green and pleasant land.


Notable Linkage: How Canada Performs: Society details and analysis


Canada earns a “B” and ranks 7th out of 17 peer countries in the Society report card. Canada’s middle-of-the-pack ranking means it is not living up to its reputation or its potential.

Canada’s social performance has remained a “B” over the last two decades.

Canada’s “D” grade on the poverty rate for working-age people, and its “C” grades on child poverty, income inequality, and gender equity are troubling for a wealthy country.

How Canada Performs: Society details and analysis

Notable Linkage: World Economic Forum: Global Risks 2013


The nature of global risks is constantly changing. Thirty years ago, chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) were seen as a planetary risk, while threat from a massive cyber attack was treated by many as science fiction. In the same period, the proliferation of nuclear weapons occupied the minds of scientists and politicians, while the proliferation of orbital debris did not. We see a similar story with asbestos then and carbon nanotubes today, and the list goes on. With new information, the perceptions and realities of risks change, and often in unforeseen directions. Consider that in some circles the threat from greenhouse gas emissions made nuclear energy seem less hazardous than fossil fuels over the long run. Yet the nuclear catastrophe in Fukushima, Japan, not only changed public perceptions there but also energy policy, almost overnight, in some parts of Europe.

The global risk that respondents rated most likely to manifest over the next 10 years is severe income disparity…

World Economic Forum: Global Risks 2013

Notable Linkage: Broadbent study on equality


There is widespread and growing agreement that Canada,
among many other advanced industrial countries, has a serious
and growing inequality problem. Experts at the Organization
for Economic Co-operation and Development (the OECD) and
the Conference Board of Canada have shown that we have
become a much more unequal and divided society over the
past generation. The incomes of the top 1% have exploded,
while middle-class wages have stagnated for over thirty years.
This sort of inequality has profound implications for the quality
of our democracy, for social and environmental sustainability,
for our individual and social well-being, and for economic
stability and performance at the global and the national level.

Broadbent study on equality