O Canada! There’s hope for you
Canada’s politics have long been left-of-center compared with those of its southern neighbor. Its rigid socialized medical system, for instance, allows virtually no private alternatives. But things may be changing—at least a bit. In the recent election in Canada’s second-largest province, Quebec, the longserving Liberal Party was routed, not by the traditional opposition party advocating separation from Canada, Parti Québécois, but by the new center-right Coalition Avenir Québec, or CAQ for short. The two older parties are both fond of taxes. The CAQ is skeptical of a proposed national carbon tax and is intent on deregulation, and it may actually reduce taxes. (The downer in this election was the 16% vote garnered by a truly hard-core leftist party, Québec Solidaire.)
In a stunner this summer, voters in the country’s largest province, Ontario, overwhelmingly tossed out a left-wing government, replacing it with a conservative one that ran against all subsidies for alternative energy sources. Alas for the reckless-spending incumbents: Windmills and solar panels are not cheap. Conservative candidates tapped into consumer anger over electricity bills that had gone up more than 70%. Needless to say, the new government has given a thumbs down to Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s carbon-tax scheme. The conservatives are also winding down a minimum-income project—the kind lauded by such Silicon Valley moguls as Mark Zuckerberg, who should know better.
Leftist regimes in several other provinces are also losing popularity.
Canada is light-years away from becoming a Switzerland or a Singapore, as was evidenced by the election of tax-loving Justin Trudeau. But there are intimations of positive change. to give up smoking. Users get the pleasure of nicotine while avoiding tar and other substances in cigarettes that are truly lethal. What are these witless prohibitionists inhaling?
In the U.S. the FDA and other worrywarts fret that teenagers are taking up vaping in “epidemic” proportions, ignoring the fact that many of these young people would be smoking and/or drinking more if they didn’t vape. Nonetheless, federal regulators are threatening drastic steps to ban vaping or sharply curtail its legal availability.
The U.S. isn’t alone. In Australia, for instance, vaping is forbidden. Woe to the uninformed tourist who vapes; you cannot buy liquid nicotine in any state or territory in Australia. Countries concerned about smoking should move in the opposite direction and follow Britain’s example. Amazingly, considering the rest of the world’s hysteria, British lawmakers encourage vaping. Result: The Sceptred Isle has the second-lowest smoking rate in Europe.