Current Issues

In Canada, we count anyone holding a part-time minimum wage job as employed. But are laid-off engineers really employed when they are making $20,000 a year, either part-time or self-employed, when they were previously making $90,000? Should jobs paying below the poverty line be counted as real jobs?

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Human history tells the story of a series of population cycles. The names and locations change but the basic pattern is this:

  1. A small group of humans comes across a resource base (in most civilizations up until 1900, this was soil) and builds a thriving civilization.
  2. This civilization develops impressive art, social, commercial and military capabilities.
  3. Either the population grows too large for the resource base or the resource base is ruined by human overuse or natural disaster.
  4. The civilization starts to show the strain of decline, with the more privileged people drawing further away from the main body of society.
  5. This distance and disparity, along with the shortage of resources, leads to civil conflict, making it even harder for the society to deal with its fundamental resource crisis.
  6. The resource crisis forces large numbers of the population to either migrate or starve. Typically, birth rates plummet while mortality increases. The population declines, either gradually or abruptly.

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Did you know?

  • Each year Canada loses 20,000 to 25,000 hectares of prime farmland to urban expansion
  • For every 1,000 people we add to Canada’s population, we lose 53 hectares of prime farmland near our large urban areas
  • Despite the large geographic area of Canada, only 3.2% of can be used to grow crops and 4.2% canbe used as pastureland

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