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Showing posts from March 23, 2017

Today's Trumpery

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Are Canadian banks headed toward a Wells Fargo–style scandal over sales tactics?

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[Headed toward?! See also: 'Sell to them or you will lose your job': Call centre employees for big banks reveal upsell pressures; and Wall Street rediscovers shame as Wells Fargo CEO Stumpf resigns. *RON*]

Ciara Linnane, Market Watch, 16 March 2017

Is there a Wells Fargo–type banking scandal breaking in Canada?

An investigative news segment of CBC-TV, radio and the web called “Go Public” said that it received more than 1,000 emails from employees at the five big Canadian banks complaining of extreme pressure to cross-sell products to their customers to meet aggressive sales targets. The emails came after a “Go Public” report last week that staff at TD Bank were being pressured to sell customers products they do not need.

The emails came from employees at the Royal Bank of Canada RY, +1.19% Bank of Montreal BMO, +0.50% Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce CM, +0.73% Toronto-Dominion TD, +0.88% and Bank of Nova Scotia BNS, +0.31% across the cou…

Record-breaking climate change pushes world into ‘uncharted territory’

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[Earth is a planet in upheaval, say scientists, as the World Meteorological Organisation publishes analysis of recent heat highs and ice lows. See also: Trump's likely science adviser calls climate scientists 'glassy-eyed cult'; and Alpine ski resorts could lose up to 70% of snow cover by 2100 – experts. *RON*]
Damian Carrington, The Guardian, 21 March 2017
The record-breaking heat that made 2016 the hottest year ever recorded has continued into 2017, pushing the world into “truly uncharted territory”, according to the World Meteorological Organisation.

The WMO’s assessment of the climate in 2016, published on Tuesday, reports unprecedented heat across the globe, exceptionally low ice at both poles and surging sea-level rise.

Global warming is largely being driven by emissions from human activities, but a strong El Niño – a natural climate cycle – added to the heat in 2016. The El Niño is now waning, but the extremes continue to be seen…

102 people died from drug overdoses in B.C. last month

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[A sad waste of humanity. That amounts to an average of more than 3.6 deaths every day. Christy, with a huge surplus, does nothing and asks Trudeau for money for this (after all, druggies don't vote). ELECTION BC 2017!! *RON*]

CBC News, 17 March 2017
New numbers from the BC Coroners Service show that 102 people in the province died of a suspected overdose in February.

That's an average of more than 3.6 overdoses every day, which is just below the average in January. In that month, 117 people died of overdoses, but the month is three days longer.

Both numbers show a decline from December, which saw a record-breaking 142 overdose-related deaths.

Chief Coroner Lisa Lapointe said there's still a long way to go in addressing the crisis.

"While I'm very relieved to see that the numbers have not continued to increase over the last two months, we are still losing cherished members of our communities at a terrible rate."
She noted th…

Enbridge to cut 1,000 jobs after buying Spectra

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[Thank goodness that oil and gas is coming to save our economy and give us all jobs! ELECTION BC 2017!!! *RON*]

Reuters, Globe & Mail, 22 March 2017
Canada’s Enbridge Inc said on Wednesday it would cut about 1,000 positions, or 6 per cent of its work force, after buying Spectra Energy Corp of Houston, the first layoffs for the combined energy infrastructure company, the biggest in North America.

The takeover announced last year, the most significant energy deal since oil and natural gas prices crashed in mid-2014, had highlighted how pipeline companies were under pressure to merge as they grappled with overcapacity and sliding tariffs that had slowed dividend growth and unnerved investors.

It is relatively common for layoffs to occur in mergers, and even without such deals oil and gas companies have been shedding staff in a bid to cut costs.

At the time, an expert said the deal had no serious antitrust problems as the companies’ networks have li…

The Gig Economy Celebrates Working Yourself to Death

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[Giving yourself over in slavery to employers who refuse to be called employers (because then you would deserve benefits) is the essence of the "Gig" economy, aka the "Sharing" economy. *RON*]

Jia Tolentino, New Yorker, 22 March 2017

Last September, a very twenty-first-century type of story appeared on the company blog of the ride-sharing app Lyft. “Long-time Lyft driver and mentor, Mary, was nine months pregnant when she picked up a passenger the night of July 21st,” the post began. “About a week away from her due date, Mary decided to drive for a few hours after a day of mentoring.” You can guess what happened next.

Mary, who was driving in Chicago, picked up a few riders, and then started having contractions. “Since she was still a week away from her due date,” wrote Lyft, “she assumed they were simply a false alarm and continued driving.” As the contractions continued, Mary decided to drive to the hospital. “Since she d…