Blog

08 Jul 2020 Counting the Cost of COVID Part IV: Forecasting our Financial Future

by Levi Minderhoud In the last two blog posts on the financial effects of COVID, I compared the current deficit to past deficits and critiqued government spending in response to government-mandated lockdown. Now it is time to anticipate the future financial impacts of COVID. Will this recent spending bankrupt our country? The short answer is… no. At least, not yet.Will this recent spending bankrupt our country? The short answer is… no. At least, not yet. This year’s federal deficit is currently projected to be $343 billion or 15.9% of GDP, although that number will...

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02 Jul 2020 Current Opportunities for Partisan Political Action in British Columbia

by Levi Minderhoud In past articles, I have stressed The Importance of Partisan Political Activity and laid out A Primer on the Political Parties in British Columbia. But how and where should you get involved? Below is a list of current and upcoming opportunities for involvement in each of British Columbia’s five most notable political parties. More opportunities, especially nomination races, may be ongoing at the riding level for these political parties, but party members are often the only ones notified of these local opportunities.   BC Liberal Party Ten candidate nomination races are currently...

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02 Jul 2020 Counting the Cost of COVID Part III: Evaluating Canada’s Current Deficit

Updated July 8, 2020 by Levi Minderhoud My previous blog post in this series compared Canada’s current deficit to the deficits in Canada’s past. At $343 billion, or 15.9% of GDP, Canada is spending more money to combat COVID than any other war or major disaster in Canada’s history except for during the Second World War. This begs the question, should the federal government spend so much to combat this virus? A Couple of Caveats Before answering the question of how much money the government should spend, I must address a couple of caveats. First,...

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30 Jun 2020 Reflections from a Christian patriot on Canada Day

By André Schutten Happy Canada Day! Canada Day (or, for those who remember, Dominion Day as it was called until 1983) is a great day to rejoice and be glad in the gift God has given us in this Dominion of Canada. I love my home and native land. Canada is a good country to live in, a good country to raise children in, to work in, and to minister and serve others in. She is stunning in her beauty, valiant in her history, and well-formed in her founding. We have more...

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25 Jun 2020 Ruth the Can Collector: The Case for Restoring Old Testament Gleaning Principles

  By Mark Penninga If Ruth the Moabite lived today, she would probably have resorted to collecting empties from recycling bins and on the sides of roads to feed herself and her mother-in-law, Naomi. Few Bible stories warm my heart like that of Ruth. When Ruth moved to Israel from Moab with her mother-in-law Naomi, she was vulnerable on a number of levels: widowed, without children, a foreigner, and the caregiver of her mother-in-law, who was also widowed.If Ruth the Moabite lived today, she would probably have resorted to collecting empties from recycling...

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24 Jun 2020 Counting the Cost of COVID Part II: Comparing to Past Crises

Updated July 8, 2020 by Levi Minderhoud In the first blog post in this series, I delved into the wisdom and morality of government debts, deficits, and aid from a Christian perspective. I concluded that incurring debt is often unwise and sometimes even immoral, but as long as the government has the ability to repay their debt, and the norm is a balanced budget, debt can justifiably be incurred. The Bible also teaches that individuals, families, and churches – not just governments – have significant roles to play in assisting the financially...

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23 Jun 2020 A Primer on the Political Parties in BC

by Levi Minderhoud There are 3 political parties that currently hold seats in the Legislature of British Columbia: the BC Liberals, the BC New Democrats, and the BC Greens. Two other provincial parties, the BC Conservatives and the BC Christian Heritage Party, also may be of interest to Reformed Christians. The purpose of this article is to sketch out the popularity, the general ideologies, and the policy of each of these five parties so that you can make sense of BC’s political news, cast an informed vote, and (hopefully) join the political...

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23 Jun 2020 The Importance of Partisan Political Activity

by Levi Minderhoud *As ARPA’s British Columbia Manager, I’m going to discuss involvement in party politics in the British Columbian context, but the same principles apply anywhere in Canada.   Since its inception, ARPA Canada has chosen to be non-partisan. This allows ARPA as an organization to better engage with elected officials regardless of their partisan colour. But we certainly encourage you to be partisan. Being a member of a political party does not give you extra responsibilities within that political party. It does not take much time or money. It doesn’t even mean that...

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19 Jun 2020 Churches as unifiers should not be penalized for their effective contact tracing

By pastor Gerrit Bruintjes and André Schutten For the past month, many religious leaders have been calling on the Ontario government to ease its total ban on corporate worship services. On June 12th, the Ford government issued an executive order permitting religious ceremonies, including weddings and funerals, at 30% building capacity. In our current context amidst social unrest and uncertainty, this is a good decision not only because the Charter of Rights demands this response, but also because churches unify diverse people and can trace contacts well. In the last few weeks,...

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18 Jun 2020 BC Cuts Funding to Independent Distributed Learning Schools

by Levi Minderhoud This seems to be a year of almost unlimited government spending. The federal government (as of April 30) announced that its deficit would be $252 billion this year. The government of British Columbia is also spending $5 billion on a variety of COVID-related measures. The dominant view among policy-makers and economists is that the government should spend, spend, spend to avoid an even deeper recession. But, apparently, that fund-everything-in-sight logic doesn’t apply to independent distributed learning (IDL) schools in BC. On May 4th, the BC Minister of Education decided...

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