Showing posts from September 2, 2014

City of Burnaby Directs Kinder Morgan to Stop Work that is Damaging Burnaby Mountain Conservation Area

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[A press release from the Municipality of Burnaby. “We were prepared to allow them to access this conservation land for non-invasive work that could be repaired over time, but absolutely not to do what they arrived this morning to do – to cut down trees to create helicopter landing pads and sites for drilling bore holes on this protected land. That’s not enabled by Section 73 and it’s absolutely not permitted by our bylaws!” *RON*]

September 2, 2014

For immediate release

The City of Burnaby has directed Kinder Morgan to stop work in the Burnaby Mountain Conservation Area. This morning, Kinder Morgan arrived with chainsaws and other tree-cutting equipment and began marking trees for removal in the Burnaby Mountain Conservation Area, to conduct survey work for the pipeline the Houston-based company is proposing to construct between the Alberta tar sands and Burnaby.

“I think it’s unfortunate that it has come to this,” says Mayor Derek Corrigan, “but w…

After 13 Years Of Fighting For Wall Street, Eric Cantor Will Make Millions At An Investment Bank

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[Should this be considered a "new" job or just a promotion from his employer? *RON*]

By Josh Israel, Think Progress, 2 September 2014

Former House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA), who resigned last month after losing renomination to an underfunded college professor, spent much of his 13-plus years in the U.S. Congress advancing the agenda of Wall Street investment firms. This week, he announced that he will be joining a Wall Street investment bank as its new vice chairman.

Cantor will be joining Moelis & Co., the investment bank said, to “provide strategic counsel to the Firm’s corporate and institutional clients on key issues,” to “play a leading role in client development,” and to “advise clients on strategic matters.” The announcement press release praised Cantor as a “leading voice on the economy and job creation,” who worked in Congress “to lower taxes, eliminate excessive regulation, strengthen small businesses, and encourag…

The Canada Revenue Agency doubles down

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[The Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA) is under investigation by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) for being "one-sided" while the Fraser Institute, the CD Howe Institute and the Manning Foundation are not. Will the electorate continue to put up with these witch hunts? *RON*]
By J. Baglow,, 1 September 2014

According to a document newly obtained through an Access to Information request, the august Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA) is under audit scrutiny because, according to Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) officials, its research and educational materials are "one-sided."

I must admit I'm tickled by the notion of "one-sided" research. Does that mean investigating an issue without using contradictory hypotheses to do so?

In any case, we are informed that two prominent right-wing think tanks are not being audited for bias or indeed for anything else, and informed that two others are …

Premiers weak in response to cutbacks, trade threats to public health care

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[The premiers are rolling over and meekly playing dead on both the cut-backs to health care in the new Healthcare Accord imposed by Harper and the substantially increased costs of pharmaceuticals that will be caused by the proposed CETA trade agreement with the European Union. *RON*]
By Brent Patterson,, 2 September 2014

The Council of Canadians was in Charlottetown last week asking the premiers to take a stronger stand on health care and to defend public health care from the threats posed by so-called "trade" agreements.

And while the premiers have now asked for more funding from the federal government for health care, they are being meek, not adequately defending perhaps the greatest social program Canada has, and are completely failing to respond to the ways in which CETA will undermine public health care.

CBC reports, "P.E.I. Premier Robert Ghiz, who is the host of the Council of the Federation this week, said all th…

Diet gap widening along with income inequality

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[The growing difference in how the rich and poor eat is thought to have important public health implications. *RON*]
By Lindsey Tanner, Associated Press, The Portland Press Herald, 1 September 2014

CHICAGO — Americans’ eating habits have improved – except among the poor, evidence of a widening wealth gap when it comes to diet. Yet even among wealthier adults, food choices remain far from ideal, a 12-year study found.

On an index of healthy eating where a perfect score is 110, U.S. adults averaged just 40 points in 1999-2000, climbing steadily to 47 points in 2009-2010, the study found.

Austerity is making life unbearable for those with mental health conditions

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[Strangulation of funds has seen the NHS Mental Health Trusts lose £253m, 2.3 per cent of their funding. See also Stuckler (2014) The Body Economic: Why Austerity Kills. *RON*]

By James Elliott, The New Statesman, 1 September 2014

The core ideal of the NHS, that makes it so beloved by British people, is its promise of healthcare free for all. That promise has now become incompatible with the reality of austerity.

By 2020, the NHS will require an extra £30bn just to keep services at their present level. This strangulation of funds has seen the NHS Mental Health Trusts lose £253m, 2.3 per cent of their funding. These cuts translate into a dramatic loss of vital support for those with mental health conditions.

Half of early intervention programmes targeted at young people have been cut. The LSE estimates 30,000 people with mental health conditions have lost their social care, while 1,700 beds have been cut. Over a fifth of doctors said they had sent a…