Some thoughts on ecology, evolution and economics

Posts filed under Economics

World trade: four years later

I first started tracking the main flows of world trade in 2015. Following up in 2018, there were subtle changes in the export of goods from twenty of the largest economies. In today’s post, we will look at the initial effects of the trade deals and conflicts discussed in 2018 and the early impacts of… (read more)

After the storm: Canadian healthcare after the pandemic

I remember watching the TV in the hospital visiting room on my last shift as a volunteer before the pandemic. The news was all about Covid. It was clear that the risks had become too great for non-professionals like me. The nurses, doctors and patients would have little choice in the months and years ahead…. (read more)

Are we working smarter?

The saying “Work smarter, not harder” is of particular interest in economics.  Though the typical measure of a country’s wealth is its production divided by its population, or GDP per capita, economists spend a lot of time looking at a slight variation on this, the value of its production divided by the number of hours… (read more)

Ten proposals for Canadian Healthcare

The Globe & Mail ran a ten part series this May on how to improve health care in Canada, a topic of some interest for this blog. The timing of this set of articles is important. The provincial premiers, who are constitutionally bound to make policy for and ultimately pay for public healthcare, are demanding a… (read more)

End of poverty?

Bill C-223 was introduced in Canada’s parliament on December 16, 2021 as part of a long tradition of anti-poverty legislation. Sadly, as a private member’s bill, there is little chance of it coming into force.  However, there is increasing optimism that the bill’s approach of introducing a framework for a guaranteed basic income for all… (read more)

An election primer on Canadian health care

This blog has long  been concerned about sustainable health care , in particular, Canadian health care. In the 2019 election, health care has taken a back seat to climate change and economic issues.  Still, the scope of public health care and the federal government’s role in assuring it is being discussed. Here, I offer a summary… (read more)

Wallets and whitecoats

Doctors provide an essential service: they make us well. Shouldn’t they be paid for this? More specifically, shouldn’t those who have wealth or foresight have better access to care than those who can’t or won’t prepare for injury or disease? These are the questions that challenge the concept of universal health care. Yet, except in… (read more)

Plastics: the problem or the solution?

My wife and I wrap cheese when we put it into our lunchbags.  I use plastic and she uses waxpaper. As the waxpaper is at least twice as thick as the low density polyethylene in my lunch bag, I initially create a smaller waste burden in our local landfill.  Of course, over time, the waxpaper… (read more)

What’s shaking in world trade?

A couple of years ago, I offered a synopsis of world trade patterns on the basis of the Economist’s Pocket World in Figures.  Here is an update of that post for 2018 with a bit of a forecast of how the trade deals (or lack thereof) we keep hearing about might shake things up in… (read more)

Caring for Americans

Shortly before leaving office in 1974, Richard Nixon proposed a universal healthcare bill that would have assured all Americans of health insurance coverage. Developed countries around the world were passing similar legislation at the time, using some mix of private and public insurance. It was also at this time that the American healthcare system began… (read more)