Lockdowns are unlawful, and are not justified

No one has a moral obligation to obey COVID-19 lockdown orders. Therefore civilly disobeying them is justified

Lockdowns are unlawful, and are not justifiedLockdown orders are not justified. There is, consequently, no moral obligation to obey them. Let me explain. In the wake of SARS and H1N1, Public Health Canada drafted the Pandemic Influenza Preparedness guideline (CPIP). Although we failed to meaningfully operationalize this guideline it nevertheless maintains that, “when considering restrictive measures, it is important to balance…

New Nova Scotia premier must seize opportunity for economic change

Nova Scotia is envied for its commitment to the environment. But it must also more aggressively encourage resources and startups

New Nova Scotia premier must seize opportunity for economic changeThe Nova Scotia Liberal Party has chosen a new leader so it’s important to think about the policy priorities of the province’s new premier, Iain Rankin. Although an election doesn’t need to be held until spring 2022, Elections Nova Scotia is already preparing for one as early as April 1 of this year. The premier…

Biden using COVID-19 to advance radical policies

The pandemic has plunged the West into a state of fear, with more people willing to accept greater government interference

Biden using COVID-19 to advance radical policiesIn his first days in office, President Joe Biden rescinded a Donald Trump-era order that restricted the United States government’s use of diversity training to examine issues around race and gender bias, and systemic racism. In doing so, he will be advancing radical and divisive racial politics that have plagued his Democratic Party and popular…

COVID-19 vaccine task force transparency crucial

Any appearance of conflicts of interest must be eliminated

COVID-19 vaccine task force transparency crucialBy Joel Lexchin, Lisa Bero, Marc-Andre Gagnon, Quinn Grundy and Barbara Mintzes COVID-19 vaccines are starting to come into Canada again and hopefully there won’t be any further interruptions. Public acceptance of vaccines will depend on how confident people are that the best decisions have been made about which vaccines to purchase. If it looks…

#ScienceUpFirst turning the tide on COVID-19 misinformation online

“Misinformation is a dire, imminent threat to the lives of all Canadians"

#ScienceUpFirst turning the tide on COVID-19 misinformation onlineHow do you respond to a deluge of COVID fake news on social media? If you ask Timothy Caulfield, he would say fight back with a tsunami of irrefutable science. That’s just what he and other notable influencers are doing with a new social media campaign called #ScienceUpFirst. So far, it seems to be working, with…

Lockdowns battered economy but didn’t end the pandemic

Are politicians following the data or their pride?

Lockdowns battered economy but didn’t end the pandemicWhen the British government revealed the existence of a new strain of COVID-19 just before Christmas, it proved an effective way for the prime minister to enforce strict Tier 4 lockdown measures on much of the south of England with minimal fuss. It also very quickly isolated the United Kingdom from the rest of the…

Dialysis patients to be surveyed on mental health during COVID-19

Rates of depression, anxiety were 10 times higher for people with end-stage kidney disease even before the pandemic started

Dialysis patients to be surveyed on mental health during COVID-19Alberta’s 3,000 kidney failure patients who are on dialysis are being asked to report on their mental health during the COVID-19 pandemic. “When we talk about people who are highly vulnerable for COVID-19, that includes people living with kidney failure,” said lead researcher Kara Schick-Makaroff, associate professor in the Faculty of Nursing. “They are often older adults…

Wastewater from care homes could be COVID-19 early warning system

Wastewater samples from manholes near long-term care facilities being tested to detect the presence of SARS-CoV-2

Wastewater from care homes could be COVID-19 early warning systemUniversity of Alberta medical scientists are teaming up with public health officials, Edmonton’s drainage utility company and other collaborators to develop an early warning system for COVID-19 outbreaks in long-term care homes. On Jan. 4, EPCOR began taking twice-weekly wastewater samples from manholes located at 10 Edmonton long-term care facilities, which are then tested by U of…

Lockdowns didn’t work; they simply crippled our economy

Quarantining the healthy, while failing to properly protect the most vulnerable, never made sense

Lockdowns didn’t work; they simply crippled our economyBy David Redman and Brian Giesbrecht Frontier Centre for Public Policy Vaccinations are happening and lockdowns will finally end. Politicians, and a supportive media, will tell us that their lockdown policies saved us. But before accepting that claim, should we not take a close look at others who did things differently? The public will be…

New strategies for when a pandemic becomes endemic

What governments have done in response to COVID-19 has been remarkably injurious to humanity’s general health

New strategies for when a pandemic becomes endemicRecent pronouncements by the World Health Organization (WHO) suggest its view of COVID-19 is evolving from a pandemic threat that’s novel and spreading to an endemic threat that has established itself as just another new contestant in the vast ecosystem of organisms that interact periodically with humans. This suggests a need to change strategy. After…

Global vaccine certification would help world bounce back from COVID-19

Surest way to restore free movement across borders and reboot ailing economies

Global vaccine certification would help world bounce back from COVID-19As the world looks to a post-pandemic future, a global COVID-19 vaccine certification program might be the surest way to restore free movement across borders and reboot ailing economies, according to University of Alberta political scientist Andy Knight. “We need to develop an international protocol – especially for small, more vulnerable states – that will allow…

World’s Longest Hockey Game moving cancer research closer to goal

Annual fundraising effort to support clinical trial of precision drug developed at U of A

World’s Longest Hockey Game moving cancer research closer to goalAs 40 local hockey players brave the elements on an outdoor rink just outside Sherwood Park, Alberta for the World’s Longest Hockey Game, they’ll be making a difference in the lives of cancer patients in Edmonton. Over the course of more than 10 days and nights of non-stop shinny, the game, which began on Feb.…

Why a wealth tax in Canada is a horrible idea

We naturally tend to rationalize taxes on others. However, the arithmetic is undeniable: we can’t solve our problems by soaking the rich

Why a wealth tax in Canada is a horrible ideaEat-the-rich rhetoric is good politics but bad policy. The wealthy minority contribute precious investment and much-needed employment, but no good deed goes unpunished. The spectre of a wealth tax, which hangs over Canada, epitomizes infantile, self-defeating governance. Last autumn, federal NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh introduced a motion in the House of Commons calling for a…

Time to combat the COVID-19 narrative of fear

What we need is well-informed, critical and rational thought, combined with a healthy skepticism of politicians and mainstream media

Time to combat the COVID-19 narrative of fearCoronaphobia may not have entered our official vocabulary but it deserves to. Virus fears have affected public policy and our daily lives. The condition is held by a great number of people. It’s understandable why the elderly and immunosuppressed are worried. What is less understandable, and more ironic, is how many coronaphobics are on the…

Financial strain top source of worry in COVID-19 mental health crisis

Researcher studies tools for recovery from tax clinics to guaranteed basic income

Financial strain top source of worry in COVID-19 mental health crisisFinancial strain is affecting Canadians’ mental and physical health and addressing it will be key to the country’s post-COVID-19 social and economic recovery, according to public health professor Candace Nykiforuk. Nykiforuk and her team received funding from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research to study ways to address the health impacts of the pandemic related to…

How to put Canada’s post-pandemic recovery on the right track

Four areas of focus – now and in the coming years – are interprovincial trade, streamlined taxation, immigration and innovation

How to put Canada’s post-pandemic recovery on the right trackSocial engineers are eager for Canadians to buy into the same madness touted across the globe for post-pandemic recovery: more government spending. Now is precisely when technocrats must take a back seat and let markets take the wheel. On Nov. 30, Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland presented the 2020 Fall Economic Statement to Parliament. The report…

Chinese propaganda politicizing COVID-19’s origin story

China is effectively playing the victim card

Chinese propaganda politicizing COVID-19’s origin storyIf there’s one thing we’ve learned throughout this pandemic, it’s how the science related to the virus can be constantly politicized. And to change COVID-19’s origin story, that’s exactly what China is doing. Many are talking about vaccine nationalism, with concerns that some nations are racing to access as many vaccines as possible. It’s disappointing,…

Why smart utility meters are a particularly smart idea right now

Smart meters remove the need for someone to travel to homes to read meters, enabling customers to avoid costs and maintain distance

Why smart utility meters are a particularly smart idea right nowFew practical measures have been presented to achieve the lofty goals laid out in Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s green agenda or the United Nations 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda. Gender equality, increased daycare spending and reduced fossil-fuel usage might make for pretty speeches, but they do little to boost economic growth or help struggling Canadians. Genuine,…

COVID-19 vaccine rollout bungled by federal government

If we’re all in this together, what on Earth are the feds doing when it comes to the COVID-19 vaccines?

COVID-19 vaccine rollout bungled by federal government“We are all in this together and we are there for you.” Does this ring a bell? It should. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said it during a March 18, 2020, press conference – the week after the World Health Organization declared that COVID-19 had become a global pandemic. In the days that followed, Canadian businesses…

Why some oil and gas investment was doomed regardless of COVID-19

The Arctic, and all its alluring possibilities, is not part of the future as the energy and investment industries see it unfolding

Why some oil and gas investment was doomed regardless of COVID-19Toronto-Dominion Bank announced recently it won’t loan money toward any oil and gas or related development in the Arctic. While this may elicit joy from the woke anti-fossil-fuel global warmists, this was in reality a very easy decision for TD. So too will it be for others like investment banks, institutional investors, and financial entities…

Researchers developing treatment for protective wear that kills viruses

‘Self-decontaminating’ medical gowns and masks could also be washed and reused, says U of A textile scientist

Researchers developing treatment for protective wear that kills virusesNew University of Alberta research aims to make medical gowns and masks even safer for front-line health-care workers. Using a one-year, $50,000 NSERC Alliance COVID-19 grant, textiles scientist Patricia Dolez is leading research on developing a textile treatment that would kill viruses – including COVID-19 – on contact. “We are developing something that will make these fabrics self-decontaminating,”…

Failure to use rapid tests in pandemic points to deeper problems

We still have time to act by approving and quickly producing rapid tests in Canada by the tens of millions

Failure to use rapid tests in pandemic points to deeper problemsBy John Adams and Kashif Pirzada Macdonald-Laurier Institute Canada’s ongoing failure to effectively control the spread of COVID-19 reflects increasing failures by governments to coordinate with one another and to respond quickly and effectively to new developments and scientific advances. This is abundantly clear in the self-harm inflicted by our original difficulties in sourcing of…

Pandemic exposes weaknesses of government intervention

The response of governments was heavy-handed, lead-footed, wrong-headed and inept

Pandemic exposes weaknesses of government intervention2020 forever will be associated with the coronavirus sweeping Canada and the world. However, its impact on the economy was much greater than on our health. Far fewer people were stricken by the virus than the initial apocalyptic warnings from health care experts, while its impact on incomes, jobs and government deficits was larger and…

COVID-19 restrictions may be harder in assisted living than in long-term care

U of A nursing researcher’s new study seeks input from family members and facilities to understand impact, plan for next pandemic

COVID-19 restrictions may be harder in assisted living than in long-term careCOVID-19 visitor restrictions may be even harder on residents of assisted living homes than on those in long-term care because of the vital role family caregivers play in helping with essential care tasks, according to Matthias Hoben, an assistant professor in the University of Alberta’s Faculty of Nursing. “In assisted living, the residents are more independent and…

COVID-19 overreaction has pushed us to the tipping point

Our debt is rising and our population growth is slowing. The result will be a massive fiscal burden on taxpayers in decades to come

COVID-19 overreaction has pushed us to the tipping pointCaught between a rock and a hard place. This best sums up the position that Alberta’s United Conservative Party government found itself in as it announced new, stricter lockdown measures for Christmas. The government is attempting to bend the rising curve of COVID-19 infections. Premier Jason Kenney and his most trusted ministers lined up to…

Covid-19 pokes the final hole in leaky long-term care boat

We cannot blame COVID-19 alone for the current LTC crisis, writes Shawn Whatley

Covid-19 pokes the final hole in leaky long-term care boatNursing homes struggled long before the COVID-19 pandemic arrived in Canada. Now, during the second wave, many front-line clinicians say our long-term care (LTC) system has all but collapsed. In the pre-COVID era, patients waited a median of 159 days to get a bed in Ontario, with some areas at 263 days. Thus, it was…

Saudis sacrifice to broker oil production cuts

Until recently, the nation has insisted it wouldn’t unilaterally cut output until others agreed to contribute. All that has changed

Saudis sacrifice to broker oil production cutsSaudi Arabia is back in its role as the swing crude oil producer of the world. Until recently, the nation has insisted it wouldn’t unilaterally cut output until others, including Russia, agreed to contribute. But all this changed – almost overnight. On Jan. 4, while the ministers from Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and its…

Weighing the risks of youth sports in a pandemic

Weighing the risks of youth sports in a pandemicWe’re in the midst of both a COVID-19 pandemic and a childhood physical inactivity epidemic. That creates a dilemma for young athletes and their parents: Is the risk of playing organized sports during the pandemic greater than the risk of the negative physical and mental impacts of not playing? Young people need to move their…

Thankfully 2020 is over, but we’re not out of the woods yet

There's that little matter of actually rolling out the vaccines on a much wider scale in Canada

Thankfully 2020 is over, but we’re not out of the woods yetSad to see 2020 go? You’re in the minority … of one. Everyone else was quite ecstatic to roll out the welcome mat for 2021. The biggest issue we faced in 2020 was obviously the coronavirus pandemic. More than 85 million people have tested positive for COVID-19 worldwide, leading to nearly 1.85 million deaths as…
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