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Showing posts from March 28, 2014

Labour, skills shortage in Canada? Budget watchdog says no

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[Parliamentary Budget Office’s Mostafa Askari says warnings from Prime Minister Stephen Harper not supported by PBO’s statistics. "The government has pointed to the so-called skills mismatch to justify measures like the foreign temporary workers program, stricter unemployment insurance eligibility rules and the Canada Jobs Grant, which has been unpopular with the provinces." *RON*]
Prime Minister Stephen Harper has warned of a jobs and skills shortage in Canada. But the Parliamentary Budget Office says statistics don't back up the idea.

By: Lisa Wright Business Reporter, Published on Tue Mar 25 2014

Canada’s budget watchdog says there is little evidence to back up Ottawa’s warnings of serious labour and skills shortages.

Though Prime Minister Stephen Harper has called the skills mismatch one of Canada’s most pressing economic problems, the new report by the Parliamentary Budget Office finds that’s just not the case.

In fact, the in…

The Harder You Work, the Richer They Get: Wages, Profits and Productivity

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[In Canada, “If median real earnings had grown at the same rate as labour productivity, the median Canadian full-time full-year worker would have earned $56,826 in 2005, considerably more than the actual $41,401 (2005 dollars).” Is this sustainable? As the author says, You Can't Sell It If Everyone's Broke! *RON*]
by Pete Dolack, counterpunch.org, Weekend Edition, March 28-30, 2014

It is not your imagination — you are working harder and earning less. Despite significant productivity gains during the past four decades, wages have remained flat.

This is a global phenomenon, not one specific to any country. It is not a matter of the viciousness of this or that capitalist, nor the policy of this or that government. Rather, widening inequality flows naturally from the ideological construct that now dominates economic thinking. Consider Henry Giroux’s succinct definition of neoliberalism:
“[I]t construes profit-making as the essence of democracy,…

More Proof Corporate Tax Cuts Have Done More Harm Than Good

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[Contrary to the foundational neoliberal view that corporate tax cuts will grow the economy, a new report demonstrates that "if we turned back the clock on corporate tax rates and returned to Nixon-era levels and closed loopholes, millions of American jobs would be created." *RON*]
Richard Eskow, commondreams.org via Campaign for America's Future Blog, Mar 28, 2014


The taxes paid by corporations today are near record lows as a percentage of the United States’ total tax bill, even as they are recording massive profits. Yet the unemployment rate is still high. However, if we turned back the clock on corporate tax rates and returned to Nixon-era levels and closed loopholes, millions of American jobs would be created, according to The Disappearing Corporate Tax Base, a new report released today.

Rob Ford Says He's 'Not A Criminal,' Wants To Be Judged On Record

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[Not a criminal? Since he has been convicted of DUI and marijuana possession, and has publicly admitted to possession and use of Class 1 Controlled Substances, presumably he is speaking 'metaphorically.' *RON*]

By The Canadian Press, 03/28/2014


TORONTO - The scandal-plagued mayor of Toronto says he's not a criminal and wants people to judge him on his record as he seeks re-election.

Rob Ford — who has admitted smoking crack cocaine in a "drunken stupor" while in office among other controversies — made the comments to CBC Radio's Metro Morning.

Ford says he's saved the city "a billion dollars" and wants to continue to turn Toronto around.

When asked if his personal issues should be considered alongside his work at city hall, Ford says his troubles are "part of it" but "people are starting to become numb."

The mayor, who is also under investigation by police, repeated his now well-worn de…

It is now legal to drill oil and build pipelines in B.C.'s provincial parks

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[At the end of this article you can click through to the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society's petition to stop implementation of this Bill. I don't expect the Liberals to listen, but it would be good to let them know how many voters oppose their style of thinking, and just how tone-deaf they are to the concerns and priorities of voters and to democratic processes. *RON*]
By Carol Linnitt, rabble.ca, March 28, 2014

A little-known bill, the Park Amendment Act, that will drastically alter the management of B.C. Parks became law Monday, creating controversy among the province's most prominent environmental and conservation organizations. The passage of Bill 4 will make way for industrial incursions into provincial parklands including energy extraction, construction of pipelines and industry-led research.

The bill, quietly introduced in mid-February, has already met significant resistance in B.C. where the Minister of Environment receive…