Showing posts from November 28, 2014

On pipelines, politicians are just listening to the people

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[Project approval by Harper's Federal puppets on the National Energy Board appears to mean less and less as time goes by and the People, and First Nations, and Civil Society, and the Provinces, and the Municipalities all push back against the oil and gas corporatocracy. Interesting to read this kind of story in the Globe & Mail for that matter. *RON*]

Gary Mason, The Globe and Mail, 28 November 2014

If you listen closely, you can hear the sound of desperation in the voice of Alberta Premier Jim Prentice when he talks about the Energy East pipeline. One doesn’t have to concentrate quite as hard to detect the same anxiety in the words of Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall.

Both were taken aback when Ontario and Quebec announced seven conditions for granting approval to the pipeline. One of those includes an assessment of the project’s upstream greenhouse gas emissions – which would appear to take into account the source of the crude moving throug…

The Pipeline Follies: From the "Take Your Pick" Department

Conservatives Will Hate This: Proof That Government Spending Cuts Hurt Economic Growth

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[See the original Financial Times article for more graphs. And an answer to Edwin Starr's 1969 question: "War, what is is good for?" *RON*]

Jim Edwards, Business Insider, 27 November 2014

It's the oldest battle in politics: Whether cutting government spending helps or hurts economic growth.

The Financial Times has done everyone a favour by publishing a series of charts on how US government spending contributed, or detracted from, GDP growth. And the conclusion is pretty severe:
...austerity subtracted about 0.76 percentage points off the real growth rate of the economy between the middle of 2010 and the middle of 2011. If real government spending had remained constant at mid-2010 levels and everything else stayed constant, (yes we know these are big assumptions) the US economy would now be about 1.2 per cent larger. There's a secondary conclusion, too: War is good (economically), it turns out.

Conditions in First Nations, Metis and Inuit Communities are Canada's National Shame

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[Whether you agree with it intent or not, Harper's "Transparency" legislation, which will force public accountability for First Nations spending, is being rammed through by actually threatening to cut off funds for the problems that Suzuki describes here. Why isn't the public more aware of this? How would Canadians react if they heard someone was cutting off the water in some developing nation as a way of bullying their political 'final solutions' through? See also: Stephen Harper and the myth of the crooked Indian. *RON*]
David Suzuki, Huffington Post, 26 November 2014

Canada is among the world's wealthiest nations, but our wealth is not equitably distributed. Many communities, particularly northern and Aboriginal, suffer from poor access to healthy and affordable food, clean water, proper housing and other necessary infrastructure. An ironic example of this disparity is at Shoal Lake, about two hours east of Winnip…

Anti-terror bill C‑44: Pushing the limits of Canadian rights

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[Our surveillance state hard at work attacking the Canadian constitution. As usual this will almost certainly be thrown out by the Supreme Court but, as usual, the Conservatives will simply ride this through the legal system at taxpayer expense to see how far it will get them. A nice way to go when, having received only a minority of votes, you can serve your ideology and it doesn't cost you anything personally. *RON*]
 By Shelina AliPro Bono,, 27 November 2014

On October 29, 2014 the government introduced Bill C‑44, an Act to amend the Canadian Security Intelligence Service Act and other (related) Acts, cited in short form as the Protection of Canada from Terrorists Act. Public Safety Minister Steven Blaney statedthat the amendments put forward under Bill C‑44 are required to keep Canadians safe from terrorism and to protect and uphold the privacy of confidential informants. However, in achieving the government's stated goals…

The Wealth of the Walton Family

[Twitter tweet from Bernie Sanders. *RON*]

Donation of Prize Money by Canadian Activist Spurs Flood of Dollars to Tar Sands Fight

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[Civil society and democracy rocks! And this Canadian author is an extremely cool role model. 'Quebec, hand in hand with First Nations, must not renounce to being master on its own land,' declares Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois. *RON*]

By Sarah LazareCommon Dreams, 26 November 2014

Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois, recipient of a prestigious Canadian literary prize, announced this week he is donating the $25,000 award to a grassroots coalition against TransCanada Corporation's "Energy East" pipeline.

His challenge to people across Canada and the world to double his contribution to the group Coule Pas Chez Nous (Don’t Let it Flow in Our Backyard) has resulted in a flood of donations totaling at least $326,000 (in Canadian currency), with more money continuing to pour in.

Nadeau-Dobois achieved a high profile as an organizer of Quebec's "Maple Spring" student movement in 2012. In October of this year, he took part in a large protes…

A Thieves’ Thanksgiving

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[I'm going to plod by with drug store magnifying glasses until I can get my prescription lenses from Costco... Happy Thanksgiving to all the corporate criminals who are not in jail and who enjoy their holiday feast by sucking on the blood of war victims! (Dick Cheney, are you listening?) *RON*]
Charles Simic, New York Review of Books, 26 November 2014
It’s never been such a good time to be a crook. In what other country of laws does one enjoy so much freedom to defraud one’s government and fellow citizens without having to worry about cops showing at the door? Small-time crooks sooner or later end up in the slammer, but our big-time con artists, as we’ve come to learn, are now regarded as the untouchables, too well-heeled and powerful to lock up. Not only that, the most famous among them are widely admired, not just by their peers and politicians on the take, but even by our president, who, six years after the worst financial crisis since the…