Progressive Bloggers // Blogues progressistes Wed, 17 Dec 2014 21:44:44 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Montreal Simon: The Day Stephen Harper Collided With Crude Reality Wed, 17 Dec 2014 21:44:00 +0000 Simon

You could can see the strain in his face, he can't hide it anymore, even under all that pancake makeup.He's still trying to pretend that those tanking oil prices won't affect his plans to try to buy the next election, or balance the budget.Even though he recklessly blew the surplus before he even had one.But it's just not working, and with every passing day he's sounding more and more delusional.Read more »

]]> 0
DeSmogBlog: Questionable Development Leads to Delay in Jumbo Glacier Resort Approval Wed, 17 Dec 2014 21:23:21 +0000 Judith Lavoie A provincial delay in deciding whether construction of Jumbo Glacier Resort has substantially started is giving hope to opponents that close scrutiny will lead to the province yanking the resort’s environmental assessment certificate.

“It seems impossible to me that a minister with even the slightest self-respect could look at this and proceed with it,” said Norm Macdonald, Columbia River-Revelstoke MLA.

In order to keep the environmental assessment certificate, first issued in 2004, Glacier Resorts Ltd. had to prove by mid-October that substantial progress had been made on construction of the billion-dollar, all-season ski resort in the remote heart of the (Read more…)

]]> 0
The Common Sense Canadian: New York governor to ban fracking over health risks Wed, 17 Dec 2014 21:11:46 +0000 Common Sense Canadian Zero: the future amount of fracking in New York State under Gov. Andrew Cuomo (AP)

Read this breaking news from The New York Times on Governor Andrew Cuomo’s move to ban fracking in New York State due to health risks.

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo’s administration announced on Wednesday that it would ban hydraulic fracturing in New York State because of concerns over health risks, ending years of uncertainty over the disputed method of natural gasextraction.

State officials concluded that fracking, as the method is known, could contaminate the air and water and pose inestimable dangers to public health.

That (Read more…)

. . . → Read More: The Common Sense Canadian: New York governor to ban fracking over health risks]]> 0
Scott's DiaTribes: Pre-emptive pre-writ Liberal strike – radio style. Wed, 17 Dec 2014 20:51:01 +0000 Scott Tribe This got released yesterday on the radio. A nice little ad on the radio explaining why the Liberal Party is opposed to income splitting. Personally, I’m pleased to see we’re starting to fight fire with fire vis-a-vis the pre-writ campaign ads that the Conservatives have mastered in their attacking Stephane Dion and Michael Ignatieff (and not so successfully so far on Justin Trudeau. This ad, however, is based on policy, not personal attacks.

Take a listen

UPDATE: The Liberals have also released an ad on the radio today about Veteran Affairs – an issue that has been very prominent of (Read more…)

]]> 0
DeSmogBlog: Fracking Bans in Quebec and New York Should Give B.C. Premier Christy Clark Pause Wed, 17 Dec 2014 20:38:22 +0000 Kevin Grandia Two big blows to the natural gas industry have come in less than 24 hours, with both the province of Quebec and New York state effectively banning shale gas extraction over concerns with the process of hydraulic fracturing (a.k.a. “fracking”).

Fracking allows for the cheap extraction of natural gas from shale deposits that were previously inaccessible, and it is responsible for both the boom in natural gas production as well as the correlate controversy.

Citing public health and environmental concerns, Quebec Premier Phillipe Couillard announced yesterday that there would be no shale gas development in his province. (Read more…)

]]> 0
centre of the universe: Not with a whimper Wed, 17 Dec 2014 20:32:26 +0000 cenobyte I thought I would be much, much older before so many of my friends died. I thought I had more time. That’s the thing, isn’t it? We always think we have more time. Well, we don’t. That’s just the thing. Cherish every single moment because while time is not finite, our lives are. We are so delicately, so miserably, so beautifully … Continue reading →

]]> 0
The Disaffected Lib: Isn’t One Century of Muddled Thinking and Mass Mayhem Enough? Wed, 17 Dec 2014 20:21:00 +0000 The Mound of Sound World War One, the “War to End All Wars” didn’t.  Instead it begat World War Two which, in turn, begat the Cold War (that remained “cold” in large measure due to pure luck).  Now we discover that decisions taken in the wake of Cold War One, just like bad decisions taken in the aftermath of World War One and World War Two, has begat Cold War Two.

This is brilliantly analyzed by economist Jeffry Sachs who played an instrumental role in events that led to the undoing of the Soviet Union and watched as the West stupidly overplayed its hand, (Read more…)

]]> 0
The Common Sense Canadian: Ontario squanders extra $8 Billion on public private partnership infrastructure: A-G Wed, 17 Dec 2014 20:19:59 +0000 Common Sense Canadian A bridge built under the P3 model is likely to cost taxpayers more than a publicly funded one, says a new report

Read this Dec. 9 story from The Globe and Mail on a new report from Ontario Auditor-General Bonnie Lysyk suggesting that public private partnerships are far more costly to taxpayers than publicly-funded infrastructure projects.

Public-private partnerships have cost Ontario taxpayers nearly $8-billion more on infrastructure over the past nine years than if the government had successfully built the projects itself.

The revelation, from Auditor-General Bonnie Lysyk, comes as Premier Kathleen Wynne stakes the province’s future on a vast (Read more…)

]]> 0
The Moncton Times@Transcript - Good and Bad: Dec. 17: The Quiet Revolution of the western world. Wed, 17 Dec 2014 19:43:00 +0000 Graeme Decarie

I confess that, as a child, I spent much of my time in church. I can’t say I was all that religious. We had an old bible in the house but, except for a burst of enthusiasm when I was 15 or so, I rarely (Read more…) ]]> 0 Parchment in the Fire: Austerity policies and trade unionism: A glance at Portugal ~ Global Labour Column Wed, 17 Dec 2014 19:36:20 +0000 geofftkennedy Austerity policies and trade unionism: A glance at Portugal ~ Global Labour Column.

By Elisio Estanque and Hermes Augusto Costa

Wage labour played and continues to play a central role in Western industrial societies, not just on the economic plane but above all as a vital support for social cohesion and the rule of law. The main advances of the last 200 years including the building of the welfare state and its important gains in the field of human rights (e.g. dignified work and social rights) are examples of the importance of struggles waged by organised wage labour. The (Read more…)

]]> 0 Advocates celebrate new powers by oversight bodies to impose financial penalties on telecom companies that break the rules Wed, 17 Dec 2014 19:25:38 +0000

Following years-long campaign, CRTC is now empowered to levy financial penalties against telecom providers who mistreat customers

December 17, 2014 – This morning’s announcement of new powers allowing the CRTC to impose financial penalties against companies caught violating the Telecommunications Act comes in response to a key request made by OpenMedia in its crowdsourced Casting An Open Internet action plan. The plan called on government to “permit the CRTC to levy administrative monetary penalties (AMPs) that can be used to enforce transparency requirements and regulations.”

OpenMedia Campaigns Manager Josh Tabish had this to say about the (Read more…)

]]> 0 Political Best and Worst of 2014 Wed, 17 Dec 2014 18:49:58 +0000 lisakirbie I’m heading over to Sun shortly to talk about my picks for 2014 with Warren.

Here are my picks:

BEST MOVE: Sergeant-at-Arms Kevin Vickers saving the lives of countless politicians and visitors the day a gunman opened fire on Parliament Hill. It’s political because of where it happened – his heroic behaviour that day on the Hill should be on the minds of every politician as they take their seats during Question Period. WORST: Sexual harassment on the Hill, and how the parties (badly) handled it. But also Conservatives behaving badly – Brazeau, Duffy, Del Mastro, to name just a (Read more…) ]]> 0
DeSmogBlog: New York Governor Cuomo to Ban Fracking in State, Citing Health Threats Wed, 17 Dec 2014 18:05:35 +0000 Brendan DeMelle Several news outlets and the Twittersphere are abuzz with the news that New York State is set to ban fracking in 2015. New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s administration announced the forthcoming ban — making permanent the existing moratorium — during a year-end cabinet meeting.

The primary reason cited by the Cuomo administration is health concerns related to the extremely controversial, water- and chemical-intensive fracking process. According to The New York Times, the acting state health commissioner Howard Zucker, said, “I cannot support high volume hydraulic fracturing in the great state of New York.”

Zucker then made a simple (Read more…)

]]> 0 Goliath Vs. Goliath Wed, 17 Dec 2014 17:55:00 +0000 Eva Prkachin

Last week’s massive email leak at Sony revealed a number of unsavoury things about the company from the racist comments of Sony co-chairman Amy Pascal, to the company’s scramble to avoid provoking an international incident in the upcoming Judd Apatow comedy The Interview, to the fact that Oscar-winner and A-lister Jennifer Lawrence was paid less than her male counterparts in American Hustle.

It also provided some pretty hilarious celebrity inside gossip, like that George Clooney is super sad that no one liked The Monuments Men, Sony thinks Adam Sandler is terrible, too, and that Channing Tatum writes emails to (Read more…)

]]> 0
Accidental Deliberations: Wednesday Morning Links Wed, 17 Dec 2014 17:51:00 +0000 Greg Fingas Miscellaneous material for your mid-week reading.

- Mariana Mazzucato comments on the role of the innovative state – and the unfortunate reality that we currently lack anything of the sort due to corporatist thinking: (T)hanks in part to the conventional wisdom about its dynamism and the state’s sluggishness, the private sector has been able to successfully lobby governments to weaken regulations and cut capital gains taxes. From 1976 to 1981 alone, after heavy lobbying from the National Venture Capital Association, the capital gains tax rate in the United States fell from 40 percent to 20 percent. And in the name (Read more…)

]]> 0
Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: SaskPower Says Bigger Is Better, Even Losses? #PowerToGrow Wed, 17 Dec 2014 16:53:43 +0000 John Klein As a followup to the Star Phoenix’s article on the hugely expensive, and (public) money losing CCS plant at Estevan, comes word of further cost overruns. The overruns, in the hundreds of millions of dollars, would have been sufficient to buy Regina its Stadium II, outright, fix its pension shortfall, or replace its Waste Water Treatment Plant.

SaskPower has apparently been misleading people by saying we need coal for “baseload” power, when Saskatchewan’s abundant wind source, coupled with Manitoba’s hydro, could safely provide a reliable power supply to homes, schools, etc.

And it appears that viable, cleaner, lower-cost solutions (Read more…)

]]> 0 Your Daily Digital Digest for Wednesday, December 17, 2014 Wed, 17 Dec 2014 16:31:07 +0000 Andrew Currie

Your news links for today:

Statement from Jean-Pierre Blais, Chairman of the CRTC, on monetary penalties and paper bill fees – Canada News Centre Shaw Cutting Internet Speeds? Wrong, Telecom Says, But Prices Are Rising – Huffington Post Shaw Rings In New Year With Price Hikes – DSL Reports U.S. boosts basic broadband, Canada left in the cold – AlphaBeatic Sony’s lawyers warn the media: stop reporting on leaked documents, or else – The Verge Sony leaks reveal Hollywood is trying to break DNS, the backbone of the internet – The Verge Net Neutrality “Shadowy” anti-net neutrality group submitted (Read more…) ]]> 0
Willy Loman: Life in a Banana State Wed, 17 Dec 2014 16:20:00 +0000 WILLY

Reading the notice of appeal below that was filed this week by the Public Prosecution Service of Canada, one might assume that this federal agency is questioning the somewhat lenient sentence that Sona received with his misleading “robo calls”. Ottawa – December 15, 2014 – Today, in the Ontario Court of Appeal, the Public Prosecution Service of Canada filed a Notice of Appeal against sentence, in R. v. Sona.

The Notice of Appeal was filed on the basis that the sentence imposed by the trial judge is demonstrably unfit and fails to reflect the gravity of the offence.

Mr. Sona (Read more…)

]]> 0
Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: A Few More Uke Arrangements Wed, 17 Dec 2014 15:03:20 +0000 Ian Chadwick Lately, I’ve been redoing all the arrangements of songs I put together for the Collingwood Public Library Ukulele Group (CPLUG) this year, as well as arranging some new pieces for the group. I’m working on a new layout for the tunes that makes them easier for beginners to follow and makes the songbook somewhat easier […]

]]> 0
Wise Law Blog: 140 Law – Legal Headlines for Wednesday, December 17, 2014 Wed, 17 Dec 2014 14:43:00 +0000 Rachel, Law Clerk and Office Manager . . . → Read More: Wise Law Blog: 140 Law – Legal Headlines for Wednesday, December 17, 2014]]> 0 Northern Reflections: That Would Make No Sense At All Wed, 17 Dec 2014 14:30:00 +0000 Owen Gray                                          

Scott Clark and Peter DeVries ask the question the majority of Canadians are asking:

Why do the Conservatives govern the way they do? Why do they treat so many Canadians with such … contempt? Aboriginals, immigrants, children, disabled and minorities — all have been pushed aside. Not-for-profit groups and associations have been deprived of the resources they need to contribute to the economic, social, scientific, environmental and cultural well-being of the country.

(Read more…)

]]> 0
Politics and its Discontents: Winston Smith – Alive And Well At The CBC? Wed, 17 Dec 2014 14:27:00 +0000 Lorne

You may recall the protagonist of Orwell’s 1984, the records clerk named Winston Smith whose job it was to continually rewrite history so that it accorded with the constantly-changing imperatives of Big Brother’s government. The novel’s ending is ambiguous; Winston, a broken man, may or may not die.

I am here to report that Winston did, in fact, survive, and is currently in the employ of the CBC, going about the old job he had at the Ministry of Truth.

And the Corporation is keeping him busy.

Winston’s first order from feckless management is to deftly excise a segment (Read more…)

]]> 0
Babel-on-the-Bay: Selling what you don’t understand. Wed, 17 Dec 2014 14:10:41 +0000 Peter Lowry Only a banker could dream up this one. Former TD Bank head Ed Clark insists on the Ontario government selling electricity distribution to private sector people who could then make a profit from other people who would have no choice but to buy their electricity from them. We have it on the authority of none other than the Ontario Minister of Energy that these people can charge whatever they want because nobody understands energy costs anyway.

And these entrepreneurs do not have to worry about the capital cost of the distribution system they buy. Any bank in Canada will loan (Read more…)

]]> 0
Warren Kinsella: Political 2014 in review Wed, 17 Dec 2014 14:05:57 +0000 Warren Sun News has asked me and Lala what we think are the best, worst, etc. political moments in 2014. The quickie list below ris my first stab at it.

What’s yours? Comments are open!


BEST MOVE – Parties coming together post-shooting WORST MOVE – Politicizing sexual harassment on Hill MOST SURPRISING – Liberal wins in PQ and Ontario MOST IMPROVED – Harper – he ain’t dead yet MOST DISAPPOINTING – Trudeau open nominations NEWSMAKER – Trudeau – nobody makes news like he does, for good or bad

]]> 0
Warren Kinsella: If you’ve never been hated by your child, you’ve never been a parent Wed, 17 Dec 2014 13:57:30 +0000 Warren So sayeth the great Bette Davis.

A music biz friend tells me he’s happy because only one of kids isn’t talking to him this Christmas; a law school friend tells me one of his kids refers to him as a well-known former German dictator. As such, I’m starting to get the sense I’m not alone on this one.

Anyone out there got stories you want to share, anonymously? If nothing else, we can all get together for a drink over the holidays and share some Rodney Dangerfield jokes about parenting (viz. “I could tell my parents hated me. My bath (Read more…)

]]> 0