Showing posts from September 10, 2014

B.C. Teachers' Strike Won't Be Settled With Budget Surplus: Minister

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[Ideology trumps the public good. "I heard the finance minister say it's steady as she goes. That things are on track. I certainly don't think that's the feeling families have. I certainly don't think that's the feeling British Columbians have." Carole James *RON*]
By Dirk Meissner, The Canadian Press, Huffington Post, 10 September 2014

VICTORIA - Finance Minister Mike de Jong says British Columbia's budget surplus is higher than originally forecast, but he's not about to fork over the extra cash to settle the ongoing teachers strike.

De Jong said Tuesday first quarterly financial results show the 2014-2015 budget is forecast to have a $266 million surplus, up $82 million from what was predicted in the budget last February.

Earlier this week, B.C. Teachers Federation president Jim Iker and Opposition New Democrat Leader John Horgan both suggested the government could find more money to settle the strike which ha…

More Canadians Living Paycheque To Paycheque, Few Saving Enough

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[The government has created policies making it easier and easier for people to get into debt because they have been relying on consumer spending to grow the economy. Meanwhile they have been busily undoing legislative supports for unionization and charging more and more for less and less government service. It's no surprise if we're increasingly broke. *RON*]
By The Canadian Press, Huffington Post, 10 September 2014

TORONTO - The Canadian Payroll Association says things are getting tougher for working Canadians.

The CPA, in its sixth annual survey of thousands of Canadian employees, says it found more are living paycheque to paycheque, most are saving less than they should and even more are falling further behind in meeting their retirement goals.

The association said the survey found that more than half of employees — 51 per cent — would find it difficult to meet their financial obligations if their paycheque were delayed by a single week. …

Canadian University Costs To Soar, CCPA Report Says

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[The Americanization of Canadian universities. In the United States, student debt has now topped one trillion dollars. *RON*]
By Maria Babbage, The Canadian Press, Huffington Post, 9 September 2014

Students will need deeper pockets to study at Canadian universities over the next four years with annual fees projected to rise 13 per cent on average to $7,755, having almost tripled over the past 20 years, according to a new report.

Students in Ontario can expect to shell out $9,483 on average in tuition and other compulsory fees in 2017-18. Fees in the province have nearly quadrupled over the last two decades, said the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives.

The high cost of getting a degree is an "enormous financial stress" for students and their families, said Erika Shaker, director of the left-leaning think-tank's education project.

"All the evidence both in Canada and the U.S. does indicate that financial stressors on students ar…

Amartya Sen on Greece, the euro, reforms and austerity

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[“There is inequality in access to schooling, to healthcare, to social security. The approach to inequality from a public policy perspective must not be only through the prism of income inequality.” *RON*]

By Yiannis Palaiologos,, 9 September 2014

The front pages of the British newspapers spoke of the chilliest August bank holiday ever. The weather was described as “cold, wet and gray.” In Scotland, temperatures fell close to freezing in some areas.

However, the rainy weather could not dampen my enthusiasm as I waited at the recently renovated King's Cross station in North London to take the train to Cambridge, where I was going to meet Amartya Sen, the Nobel Prize-winning economist and eminent philosopher – one of the greatest living intellectuals.

Despite his 80 years, Sen had volunteered to pick me up at the station in Cambridge. I was quite surprised to note that he was driving – although not wholly without incident. A d…

Business Leaders Worry About Income Inequality And Revolution

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[A good illustration of what happens when you ignore interdependence. Corporations are trying to play a win-lose game without realizing that the real game of economics is not zero-sum -- therefore they are unintentionally pulling us all into a lose-lose situation while believing they are the winners who will take all. *RON*]
Erik Sherman, Forbes, 9 September 2014

Income inequality must have become a mainstream concern because even businessleaders worry about it. A newly released survey by the Harvard Business School of its alumni about American competitiveness shows that a “troubling divergence in the American economy” could ultimately sink the country’s prospects. Even as large corporations, the wealthy, and “ highly skilled individuals” prosper, “middle-class and working-class citizens are struggling.” So are small businesses, which are an important source of new jobs. The result is a division of the U.S. into two parts, one small and wealthy, t…