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Articles

CCF staff write on a variety of policy areas from a mostly legal viewpoint. Our staff often focus on policy issues related to the legal cases we support.

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This Marijuana Activist Is a Hero to Me, and I Don’t Smoke the Stuff

This Marijuana Activist Is a Hero to Me, and I Don’t Smoke the Stuff

Aug 14 2014

Unlike the “Prince of Pot”, I don’t use marijuana. I never have, and probably never will, even if it were to become legal for recreational use. But then, I don’t use alcohol either. Slowing down my brain just isn’t my cup of tea. Nevertheless, I have been a staunch admirer

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Ottawa is violating our constitutional rights in order to help the U.S. collect taxes

Ottawa is violating our constitutional rights in order to help the U.S. collect taxes

Aug 14 2014

This week, two Ontario women launched a lawsuit against the Canadian government for agreeing to turn over the personal financial information of “U.S. persons” residing in Canada to the United States government. The deal may not sound outrageous on its face, but in practice, the costs to privacy, autonomy and

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Surrogate parenting and the value of life

Surrogate parenting and the value of life

Aug 13 2014

The truth is, it’s actually not expensive to hire a surrogate in Australia; it’s illegal. That’s an important detail, because it suggests that it’s not the commercialization of surrogacy that led to this sad story, but rather the opposite: the driving of surrogacy underground and abroad by banning the exchange

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Empowering patients at the pharmacy

Empowering patients at the pharmacy

Jul 31 2014

Most of us realize that we are responsible for our own wellbeing. But with everything from disease detection to cholesterol levels, we’re reliant on doctors and specialists to tell us how we’re faring. And getting that information is full of small to medium-sized annoyances — scheduling in-person appointments by phone,

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Joe Fontana avoids jail while Canadians who commit victimless crimes are stuck behind bars

Joe Fontana avoids jail while Canadians who commit victimless crimes are stuck behind bars

Jul 28 2014

There is something profoundly unsettling about this outcome. For abusing his role as a public official to make himself financially better off at others’ unwilling expense, Mr. Fontana will spend no time behind bars. Yet many Canadians who commit victimless crimes, many of which provide them little or no material

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Just follow the constitution… PLEASE!

Just follow the constitution… PLEASE!

Jul 28 2014

But despite their publicly stated good intentions, I remain sceptical. What precisely are they proposing? You see, Canada’s constitution already guarantees free-trade between the provinces yet each successive batch of leaders has “conveniently” forgotten it. And even though so-called “incrementalism” has been a highly successful policy of Canada’s political right

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Call Off CRA’s Attack Dogs

Call Off CRA’s Attack Dogs

Jul 23 2014

An Open Letter to Stephen Harper, Prime Minister of Canada Dear Stephen, Please cast your mind back to the summer of 2001. You were the president of the National Citizens’ Coalition. I was a lawyer in private practice. The two of us, together with the head of a Canadian think

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The Tyranny of Petty Bylaws

The Tyranny of Petty Bylaws

Jul 16 2014

It’s funny because it’s patently absurd that anyone, let alone an entire city council, would think clotheslines should be the provenance of government. How does this happen? The simplest, and not inaccurate, answer is: neighbour disputes. You can often find the origins of ludicrous city bylaws in long-running feuds between

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Beating the Taxi Bureaucrats

Beating the Taxi Bureaucrats

Jul 10 2014

I’m the opposite of an early adopter. Change makes me uncomfortable; and the more people tell me how fantastic a new product or service is, the more skeptical I tend to become. But when a creative and different offering is just overwhelmingly useful, it eventually breaks through my resistance; and

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