Review: Science

Once upon a time officialdom discovered a new branch of science nobody had ever heard of. Fresh and exciting, it was quickly embraced by the smartest professors, the most progressive thinkers, the wisest judges. It swept the nation. You can’t argue with science. Only later did Canadians learn it wasn’t science at all but a hodgepodge of supposition and anecdotes perpetuated by hidden agendas. Of course by then much harm was done. There were lawsuits and unsatisfying half-apologies but the people who foisted this fraud on the people were not known for their humility. It was eugenics, the scientific claim that if dull people were prevented from having children by force if necessary, society as a whole would become sharper. Psychiatry And The Legacies Of Eugenics unravels this dark and startling story, the “devastating social movement of the first half of the twentieth century.” READ MORE

A Trudeau Endowment Audit

The Commons public accounts committee yesterday by a unanimous 10-0 vote ordered the Auditor General to investigate the original taxpayers’ endowment used to bankroll the Trudeau Foundation. Parliament awarded the Foundation $125 million subsequently used in part to buy stocks in China: "We are asking for an investigation." READ MORE

Scholar Refused China Payoff

One of the nation’s leading computer scientists says he refused a six-figure payoff from Chinese agents in what was an obvious “recruitment strategy” targeting Canadian academics. Professor Benjamin Fung of McGill University detailed the scheme in testimony at the Commons science committee: "I asked them, ‘What do you want me to do?" READ MORE

Feds Find Consumers Upset

Canadians consider federal anti-trust enforcement “lacklustre” and “ineffective,” says a Department of Industry report. The anti-trust Competition Bureau has acknowledged failures in permitting consolidation in key sectors like grocery retailing: "Large corporations are gaining too much control." READ MORE

Feds Drop Affordable Pledge

Critics yesterday ridiculed a federal sales tax holiday on new rental construction as a “limousine Liberal measure.” Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland introduced a GST holiday bill that dropped cabinet's 2015 promise to link the tax break to construction of "affordable rental housing." READ MORE

Would Use Tax To Buy Food

The president of the Canadian Labour Congress yesterday petitioned MPs for a 25 percent windfall tax on corporate profits. Proceeds should go to low income families to buy food, Bea Bruske testified at the Commons finance committee: "Use the revenue to fund an extension of the existing grocery rebate program." READ MORE

Bill Mandates Bank Scrutiny

Bank of Canada management including Governor Tiff Macklem would face tighter public scrutiny under a private bill yesterday introduced in the Senate. Critics have demanded Macklem be fired over erratic forecasts: "The Bank is not above Parliament." READ MORE

Guest Commentary

Wladyslaw Lizon

The Day They Declared Martial Law

I worked in the mines. Anybody who has never been in a Polish coal mine has no idea of the conditions. Some miners worked in a two-foot space, lying on their back, operating mining equipment for five to six hours a shift, with dust and dripping water. My first year in the mines, there were two terrible fires and explosions that took over a hundred lives. We had safety rules of course, but the unofficial policy was to extract as much coal as possible. I remember when Lech Walesa came to the mines. He seemed strong and honest and unafraid. He expressed what we felt.