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4 November 2008
22 October was the 22nd day of the fourth month of the 3rd year of Canadian national consciousness rising to invincibility, as indicated by the following press reports:
22 October 2008
The Canadian Press - Canada to fund job retraining for ex-Taliban (21 October 2008) Canada is taking a more active role in persuading the Taliban to lay down arms. Ottawa is ready to fund an Afghan-supervised programme that would give former militants job retraining and relocate them to other parts of the country. The insurgents would also be granted immunity from prosecution in return for giving up the fight. Ron Hoffman, Canada's ambassador in Kabul, said the plan is part of a broad Afghan government-led initiative. 'These are early days in the reconciliation process,' Hoffman said in an interview. The Canadian government has already indicated to Parliament that it intends to support the demobilization effort and has set aside C$14 million for the project, he added.
The Canadian Press on British Columbia Premier announces 10-point economic plan (22 October 2008) British Columbia Premier Gordon Campbell will recall the legislature for an unplanned sitting this fall to implement almost C$500 million in accelerated tax cuts and other measures. Campbell said he wants to keep BC's economy rolling by investing in building projects and giving taxpayers more money. Campbell delivered a live, provincewide television address Wednesday evening to lay out his government's 10-point economic plan. Earlier, Campbell announced that he will create an economic advisory council comprised of some of Canada's top CEOs, academics, and economists to ensure the BC economy remains competitive and productive. Campbell noted that BC's economy is healthier than most.
From a CBC News report on this: Among the actions announced, the three per cent personal income tax reduction that was to take effect on 1 January 2009, will be fast-tracked. The government reduced income tax by two per cent in July. 'We will accelerate that income tax retroactive to last January. This will mean the full five per cent personal income tax cut will be in place for this year, retroactive to Jan. 1, 2008,' Campbell said. 'This will put an additional C$144 million back into taxpayers' pockets. That's good news for your home economy, and it's good news for our provincial economy.' For small businesses, which make up 98 per cent of the province's businesses, the 2.5 per cent tax reduction planned for 2011 will now take effect 1 December of this year. The province will create a new private sector pension option for British Columbians who currently have no access to a group pension plan. More than 75 per cent of private-sector workers in BC currently aren't covered by a group pension plan, Campbell said. 'It will be available to employers, employees and self-employed people on a voluntary basis,' the premier said.
Other measures outlined in the 10-point plan include: Unlimited deposit insurance for deposits to credit unions in BC (deposits were previously insured up to C$100,000); a rebate of 50 per cent on all school property taxes to light and heavy industry; speeding up public investments in capital infrastructure projects (with an emphasis on projects that can begin immediately and will buoy employment in the construction sector). The Canadian Federation of Independent Business said the small businesses tax cut will have a major impact on the economy. Small businesses owners will likely gain confidence in their business expansion plans, said Brian Bonney, the federation's director of provincial affairs in BC
From a Globe and Mail report on this: Finance Minister Colin Hansen said this year's surplus still provides a healthy cushion. 'The bottom line as we look at the revenues, we are still ahead of where we were at the time of the budget.'
From another Canadian Press report on this: Finance Minister Hansen even guarantees that health-care and post-secondary education spending will rise in the next budget.
The Toronto Star on Ontario Premier calm amid challenges (22 October 2008) Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty has seemed uncharacteristically relaxed the last few days. He was less scripted. What he's likely found is that nothing is so liberating as telling people the truth. That was probably one of the lessons of the recent federal election. Pragmatism, realism, flexibility—and a little humility—seem the order of the day. Manitoba Premier Gary Doer said that, as economic challenges mount, 'there is no appetite in this country for overt partisan politics in any of us.' McGuinty warned of 'ideological slavishness' and how it tends to discourage any actual thinking. McGuinty noted that there is no greater place on the planet to shelter from the downturn than Canada and Ontario.
Reuters Canada - September marks turning point for Canada inflation (22 October 2008) Inflation has dropped off the radar as a threat to the Canadian economy, and September is expected to mark the turning point. 'There's a good chance from there we should see those prices trending lower, reflecting the weakening gasoline prices,' Paul Ferley, assistant chief economist at the Royal Bank of Canada, said. As recently as July, the Bank of Canada predicted inflation would peak at 4.1 per cent early next year. But its tune changed dramatically this week and it forecast inflation would slip to below 1 per cent next year and not rise to 2 per cent until the end of 2010. 'This report is the storm before the calm,' said Avery Shenfeld, economist at CIBC World Markets.
The Canadian Economic Press - Average price of gas in Canada continues to fall (22 October 2008) The average price of gas in Canada fell for the fifth consecutive week, down on average another 2.5 cents in the week ending 21 Oct. The average price of regular unleaded gasoline in Canada for the week was C$1.054, down from C$1.377 five weeks ago. Kingston had the lowest average price in the country, at C$0.968 a litre, down 1.8 cents from the prior week. Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, saw the largest decline, with gas prices falling 11.7 cents to C$1.049 cents.
Reuters Canada - Housing price drop less severe than reported, TD argues (22 October 2008) The drop in Canadian home prices in September may not be as severe as it seemed, TD Securities said. The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) last week said the average house price was dragged down in September by declines in two cities, despite year-over-year gains in average home prices in 17 of 25 major Canadian markets. TD crunched its own numbers and applied a weighting to each major city to fix 'compositional shifts', which it said were behind the distorted view. TD said the CREA has acknowledged the problem. 'When we did that we ended up with a 1% drop instead of a 6% drop,' said Eric Lascelles, chief economics and rates strategist at TD Securities.
From a Globe and Mail report on this: 'The crux of the issue is that unless the underlying cities are properly weighted . . . the results can be biased by dramatic changes . . . in certain cities,' said TD economists. TD recalculated the data using a more standard method for year-over-year comparisons and found last month's average existing home price decline to be a more moderate 1.3 per cent from Sept. 2007, not the 6.2% drop reported by the CREA.
The Winnipeg Free Press on Winnipeg lauded for successful car-theft strategy (21 October 2008) In a report released Tuesday, Winnipeg's war on car thieves has been lauded by the Conference Board of Canada as a new model that other cities can learn from. 'Based on Winnipeg's efforts to reduce auto theft, an evidence-based approach to crime prevention holds the greatest promise for making communities safer,' said Rick Linden, a University of Manitoba sociologist who wrote the report. 'This approach addresses the causes of crime, rather than focusing exclusively on either 'law-and-order' measures or social programs,' Linden said. Auto thefts dropped by 27 per cent in 2007, to their lowest level since 2001, and thefts were down a further 42 per cent in the first nine months of 2008.
The Canadian Economic Press - Record number of Canadian students received grants in 2007 (22 October 2008) Canadian students are receiving more grants and loans than ever before. Support for post-secondary students reached C$4 billion in 2007, a 7% increase on the previous year. A report shows that the average aid recipient received C$8,576 in 2006-07, a net increase of C$1,000 compared to the beginning of the decade. It found 30% of need-based student aid was provided as non-repayable grants or loan remission in 2006-07, double the figure of 15 years ago.
The Financial Post - Prairie city blossoms into the place to be (22 October 2008) Saskatoon used to be the city where people came from. Now, it's a magnet for business that churns out jobs across a multi-faceted economy, boosted by exports. 'Certainly what has been happening in the international markets has our attention,' said Kent Smith-Windsor, executive director of the Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce. 'But as long as China and India are growing, the future of Saskatchewan and Saskatoon looks incredibly bright.'
These are a few of the news reports reflecting Canada's rising invincibility from the growing Yogic Flying groups across Canada and the Invincible America Assembly at Maharishi University of Management and Maharishi Vedic City, USA.
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