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Alberta Diary: Tory income-splitting tax policy: It’s about creating and preserving gender inequality and making rich guys richer

Whew! This income splitting is a killer. Actual perfect families as seen by the Harper Government may not appear exactly like Canadian reality. Below: Queen’s University tax law professor Kathleen Lahey.

A fundamental purpose the Harper Government’s ideologically driven income-splitting tax scheme is to undermine women’s equality, Queen’s University tax law professor Kathleen Lahey told the Parkland Institute’s annual fall conference yesterday.

That’s a statement that may cause some readers to react with skepticism – but if you’re one of them, let me suggest it’s because you haven’t really been paying attention.

Dr. Lahey told a plenary session of the (Read more…)

Cathie from Canada: Ferguson waits

Decision day in Ferguson will be Monday at the earliest | Toronto Star:

“We’re living under a governor’s declared State of Emergency, we’re facing school closures, and we’ve got enough extra law enforcement here to make us all feel like enemies in our own country. And all over a process that should have been decided months ago.”

Is there anyone, anywhere, who thinks that Darren Wilson will be indicted?

The Common Sense Canadian: Rafe: Tough on Kinder Morgan, Corrigan & Robertson my kind of mayors

Re-elected mayors Gregor Robertson & Derek Corrigan. Photos: CP (left) / Dale Cornish/Forest Ethics (right)

Derek Corrigan is my kind of mayor. So is Gregor Robertson.

Both of these mayors are prepared to look beyond the immediate concerns of their city and take a broader view. I have no doubt that Robertson, who won very handily I might add, did so because he was fighting Kinder Morgan. Without any question, that position greatly enhanced the existing popularity of Corrigan.

Social change demands civil disobedience

Now that protesters are being arrested, we see a number of people expressing their undying support (Read more…)

cmkl: Well that was stupid: Strava Boom challenge almost wrecks me

Lately I’ve been pretty proud of how I’ve been running. Managing longer distances at faster pace, and feeling great complete with normal heart rate the next day. Yay me. So when Strava came out with their “Bring back the boom” challenge I signed up. Run 70km in seven days is the idea. Normally I only […]

DeSmogBlog: Canada’s Petro-Politics Playing Out on B.C.’s Burnaby Mountain

The way tensions between pipeline opponents and Kinder Morgan contractors have escalated during the last week should come as a surprise to no one.

The mishandling of the National Energy Board review of Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain oil pipeline and tanker proposal has created the conditions for the situation now unfolding on the mountainside.

And with the continuing loss of faith in these federal reviews— which even before being refigured to “expedite” energy proposals were already ill-equipped to grapple with the larger societal issues, such as climate change, related to energy proposals — we can expect to see more controversy across B. (Read more…)

The Moncton Times@Transcript - Good and Bad: Nov. 22: Sorry I’m late.

It is really too bad that we  have not seen EastEnergy ads since Thursday. They are really quite wonderful examples of how to lie to people, and manipulate them. Hitler’s Dr. Goebbels would have loved them.

Notice the simplicity of them, and the use of solid blocks of colour – especially blue. Without us being conscious of it, that makes us think of clean skies. Notice, too, that the ads tell us only that TransCanada Pipelines, really, really cares about the environment. But they never say exactly what it is they care about. There’s a reason for that. If the (Read more…)

Art Threat: Ethnography 101: La cour de Babel and La marche à suivre

The only thing I hate more than bad puns is bad ethnography, and La cour de Babel walks a fine line on that.

Following an integration class for new immigrants at a Parisian high school, the entire film is shot from the teacher’s perspective. While this is not apparent at first, since the camera angle is set to film the students dead-on, it becomes obvious in the film’s last act, when the film shifts from a series of fairly intimate portraits of the students to being about the teacher’s relationship to the group and all she has done for them.

(Read more…)

Canadian Dimension: All-Out War in Ukraine

Photo by Pete Souza


There are clear signs that a major war is about to break out in Ukraine: A war actively promoted by the NATO regimes and supported by their allies and clients in Asia (Japan) and the Middle East (Saudi Arabia). The war over Ukraine will essentially run along the lines of a full-scale military offensive against the southeast Donbas region, targeting the breakaway ethnic Ukraine-Russian People’s Republic of Donetsk and Luhansk, with the intention of deposing the democratically elected government, disarming the popular militias, killing the guerrilla resistance partisans and their mass base, dismantling the popular (Read more…)

Canadian Dimension: Meet the Warmongering Billionaires Who Will Spend a Fortune to Influence the Next President

Photo by James Emery

On November 9, the ugly face of America’s money-saturated election process was put on full display.

Sheldon Adelson and Haim Saban, two billionaires with right-wing, pro-Israel agendas, took the stage at the Israeli American Council’s inaugural conference in Washington, D.C. They fantasized about bombing Iran and about buying the New York Times because they said it’s biased against Israel. Both are bound to play an outsized role in the 2016 presidential elections by flooding the campaign with money to support their favoured candidates. In a post-Citizens United world, Adelson and Saban are kings, and Israel (Read more…)

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: Julius Caesar: Best of the Bard?

For my money, Julius Caesar is simply Billy Shakespeare’s best ever play. I mean, what’s not to like in it? It has some stonking great speeches in it – including one of his top five ever (Marc Antony’s “Friends, Romans, countrymen….”) as well as a passel of memorable lines you can quote at parties (Who among […]

Queer-liberal: Rob Ford still lying and delusional to the end…

Simple minds cling to their simple talking points:

“These guys are getting fully loaded… It’s nonsense….I’ll be on them. I’ll try to make sure it doesn’t happen again.”

Despite everything the jackass Rob Ford put Toronto through the last four years – smoking crack cocaine in office, showing up drunk at hundreds of public events, hanging out with criminals, behaving in the most vile, juvenile and criminal way possible while cameras from around the world were rolling – he has no regrets.

Even the simplest simpleton can sometimes learn and grow after being humiliated in full public view. (Read more…)

The Disaffected Lib: Polar Vortex be Damned. 2014 Could Be the Hottest Year Ever.

Take it from NOAA, the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Agency.  2014 is shaping up to be the hottest year on record.

According to the NOAA, five of the past six months have been recorded warm for their respective months; July was the fourth warmest. The October global land temperature was the fifth highest on record at 1.05 degrees Celsius above the 20th century average of 9.3 degrees Celsius. Warmer-than-average temperatures were evident over most of the global land surfaces, except for large parts of central Asia. NOAA said record warmth was notable across a large area of (Read more…) . . . → Read More: The Disaffected Lib: Polar Vortex be Damned. 2014 Could Be the Hottest Year Ever.

centre of the universe: Believe it or not, walking on air

I was tagged by Julian (@saskajules) to post five pictures in five days. Today is #TheNipper’s birthday party. He wanted to come to the giant warehouse full of trampolines. The WAREHOUSE full of TRAMPOLINES. And because the parts of my brain that process fun are stuck in the 90s, I’m in love with the blacklights and the cheesy lasers and … Continue reading →

The Disaffected Lib: How to Militarize the South China Sea

China is seeking to bolster its military presence in the South China Sea and where better but in the vicinity of the hotly contested Spratley Islands.

The prestigious British military journal, Janes, believes China is upping the ante in the region by constructing an island to accommodate a joint air and naval base at the Fiery Cross reef.

Hong Kong media have reported that China intends to establish a military air base at Fiery Cross reef, something that will no doubt be a burr under the Pentagon’s saddle.

The Disaffected Lib: Does Your Bank Back the Bomb?

We’re all familiar with the ongoing campaign to urge institutions such as universities and churches to divest their shareholdings in fossil fuel companies.

Well, if we believe that these institutions should be walking away from fossil fuels, how do we feel about their investments in the nuclear weapons industry?

A Dutch organization, Don’t Bank on the Bomb, has compiled a list of what it calls nuclear weapons producers and the entities that invest in them.

When you look at the list of producers you’ll find a lot of companies you would not be surprised to find on any mutual (Read more…)

Politics and its Discontents: And Now, A Word From David Susuki’s Grandson

Tamo Campos, David Susuki’s 24-year-old grandson, was arrested Thursday for defying an injunction granted to Kinder Morgan, which is currently conducting drilling tests in preparation for the much-contested proposed Trans Mountain pipeline.

Back at the site on Friday, at the base of Burnably Mountain Campos gave an impromptu speech, the highlights of which follow: “This is insane, why are we putting our economic system – the market – above the very ecology that we all depend upon? We’re more dependent on clean water, fresh air and clean soil, than the market! It’s the thing that keeps us alive!”

“We (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: Saturday Morning Links

Assorted content for your weekend reading.

- Tom Sullivan’s advice for Democrats south of the border that it’s essential to reach out to dispossessed voters of all types of backgrounds with a compelling alternative to the status quo is equally relevant to progressives in Canada.

- But the good news is that here, somebody’s actually applying it. And we’re also hearing plenty about how our local reactionaries are ignoring the vast majority of families – with Ashley Splawinski offering this look at the Cons’ income splitting scheme compared to the obvious alternative:  About 86 per cent of all families including (Read more…)

Cowichan Conversations: Rick Mercer’s Rant–Pure Science

Cowichan Conversations: Toronto Maple Leafs Fans Sing US National Anthem After Microphone Fails

Accidental Deliberations: On targets

Shorter Chantal Hebert: And just think how much more successful Jack Layton could have been as the NDP’s leader if only the Cons had spent years attacking him rather than Stephane Dion and Michael Ignatieff!

Of course, it’s true enough that Canada’s political scene has changed – and indeed for the better in terms of the NDP’s position. But if the NDP can engage its supporters, keep itself in the consideration set of potential governments and build further support for an already-popular leader in relative peace, I’m at a loss as to why Hebert thinks it should envy the (Read more…)

Morton's Musings: Writing to a judge

Regulation 194 of the Courts of Justice Act, Rule 1.09 says:


1.09  When a proceeding is pending before the court, no party to the proceeding and no party’s lawyer shall communicate about the proceeding with a judge, master or case management master out of court, directly or indirectly, unless,

(a) all the parties consent, in advance, to the out-of-court communication; or

(b) the court directs otherwise.

Northern Reflections: Ontario Is Ground Zero

                                                   Stephen Harper won his majority by convincing enough Ontarians to vote for him. But those same Ontarians now have a premier who is not a Harper ally. Far from it. Tim Harper writes in the Toronto Star:

There’s simply too much at stake for both sides for détente, certainly not heading into a federal election campaign and the electoral riches available in this province. The Harper Conservatives remember how Wynne campaigned against (Read more…)

Montreal Simon: How Stephen Harper Screwed the NDP AND Himself

He likes to think of himself as a Great Warrior Leader. And the greatest political genius this country has ever known.And of course his faithful fanatics in the PMO groom him like a queen bee, and feed his delusions.But these days I wouldn't be surprised if they are all sitting there in shock, watching Stephen Harper weeping like a baby, or biting the carpet in his closet.After finally realizing he has made a horrible, possibly fatal, and definitely elementary mistake.Read more »

Politics and its Discontents: What Could Possibly Go Wrong?

Plenty. When construction crews begin digging a new canal this month across Nicaragua, connecting the Pacific and Atlantic, it’ll be a boon to global shipping and, the government says, to the economy of the second-poorest nation in the Americas. But activists, scientists and others are increasingly alarmed by the environmental impact of a 173-mile artificial waterway—wider, deeper and three and a half times the length of the Panama Canal

The grim facts include: -The new canal and its infrastructure, from roads to pipelines to power plants, will destroy or alter nearly one million acres of rainforest and wetlands.

-The canal (Read more…)

Babel-on-the-Bay: What about Blair’s role at the G20?

Are Canadians supposed to believe that Toronto police Chief Bill Blair is just an unindicted co-conspirator in the illegal actions of the Toronto police during the G20 in Toronto in 2010? It is somewhat late for him to claim that he did not know that he was breaching the rights of Canadian citizens during the police actions of that dreadful weekend. Simply getting rid of Blair is not the answer.

Toronto Police Superintendant David (Mark) Fenton is currently the only senior officer charged and is now before a tribunal under the Police Services Act. He is charged with five acts (Read more…)