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Politics, Re-Spun: What Yoko Ono Knows About Fracking

Today we are fresh off the tar soaked heels of Enbridge’s lie and spin machine in Kitimat, leading to a vote AGAINST their toxic future.

In Kitimat, in a non-binding plebiscite, the people of Kitimat, but not the first peoples who live outside the town boundary, voted about 60-40 to kick out Enbridge.

They’re liars, don’t you know, making up a fake map of BC’s coast to pretend that oil tanker risks are lower than they are.

But it also turns out that Yoko Ono knows a thing or two about fracking and carbon energy.

And we also know (Read more…)

Politics, Re-Spun: Occupy Canada For May Day, With Bananas

A few days ago, I wrote about picking May Day as a good time for Occupy Vancouver to reboot itself and catch up with the Occupy Movement’s worldwide #WaveOfAction.

But I think that idea can be bigger, it can be a day for all of Occupy Canada to reboot.

Here’s how:

May Day is a good focal point. A tent city at the Vancouver Art Gallery seems to be a distracting fixation. Occupy Wall Street was about people occupying the space of the 1%: Wall Street. In Vancouver, that is not the Art Gallery. It is a fantastic rallying point, (Read more…)

Politics, Re-Spun: Welcome to Stephen Harper’s Banana Republic

#PMSH goes #BananaRepublic: the (un) #FairElectionsAct lets incumbents SUPERVISE their own election! pic.twitter.com/SG3IT8GMAz #cdnpoli

— Politics, Re-Spun (@PoliticsReSpun) April 6, 2014

Just how stupid does Stephen Harper think we are?

He thinks that we’re fine with the idea that incumbent parties should be able to pick the poll supervisors in the next election.

I kid you not.

This kind of contempt for democracy and embrace of corruption is the worst part of this brand new [un]Fair Elections Act.

This is the kind of thing for which Occupy Vancouver and Occupy Canada should be occupying every single Conservative (Read more…)

Politics, Re-Spun: What Occupy Vancouver Could Look Like

May Day, on May 1st: do you think we could get Occupy Vancouver up by then?

I know how we can get this to work. I really do.

And I’m not talking about tents or physical 24 hour occupations, in particular, right now.

I am however talking about 2 things:

What Occupy Vancouver could look like, organizationally. When we could get ourselves flowing in order to catch up with the worldwide Wave of Action: May Day.

Here’s the skinny:

Some time ago I wrote a piece about a movement that operates as I imagine Occupy Canada could work. It (Read more…)

Politics, Re-Spun: Calling For An Occupy Vancouver General Assembly

It’s now Friday, April 4, 2014.

Greetings, world, the reboot of the Occupy Movement, the Worldwide #WaveOfAction [follow it live in Twitter here], has begun in a variety of places around the world! And it will last for 3 months while it evolves its next phase.

But as it turns out, Vancouver will be fashionably late.

Here’s what’s up:

Crickets, as far as I can tell.

Now, granted, I haven’t beaten down doors checking out ALL the usual suspects involved in mobilizing Occupy Vancouver 2.5 years ago. Though I do know that a few of them are (Read more…)

Politics, Re-Spun: Occupy IKEA’s #HouseRules

IKEA’s #HouseRules = union busting!

Oh, IKEA, you’d think you’d learn from all the past corporate attempts to create a Twitter hashtag to promote your brand, attempts that have been subverted by culture jammers.

Maybe IKEA will get away with this one, #HouseRules, but in the spirit of the Occupy Movement rebooting on Friday with the #WaveOfAction, we should try to Occupy IKEA and their hashtag because they’re trying to break their union in Richmond, BC.

Let’s see how:

It happened to Emperor Stephen Harper when he wanted us to tweet science-y questions for him to ask Chris Hadfield (Read more…)

Politics, Re-Spun: We Won’t Let Police Brutality Quell Occupy’s Wave of Action

In the good old days, we used to be able to bring babies in strollers to protests/rallies/occupations opposing wars based on lies [Iraq] or psychotic arms races.

In the good old days, you didn’t have to worry about being assaulted or beaten to death by the police, or having your children apprehended while you are put under arrest for assembling in public, following our constitutional rights.

Our slide into soft fascism includes the chill effect. Even though YOU may have not yet been arbitrarily arrested or beaten by the police doesn’t mean that increasing arbitrary police brutality doesn’t reduce people’s (Read more…)

Politics, Re-Spun: Canada’s Seeks the OECD Record for Income Inequality

America: Where the rich get richer faster than in so many other places!

Yesterday I wrote about the rebooting of the Occupy Movement in 10 days. I’m very excited.

And to help you understand why this is such a big deal, especially in Canada, it’s important to see how Canada is increasingly becoming the poster child for income inequality. We are not nice and neighbourly and friendly. We are increasingly unequal society. Unless we step up and say that we’re mad as hell and we aren’t going to take it any more, the rich in Canada will continue to pad (Read more…)

Politics, Re-Spun: Occupy Wall Street Returns. Friday!

Occupy Returns! This Friday!

Ladies and gentlemen, citizens of the world, the 99%: Occupy Wall St. returns on Friday.

And not for one day. But we’re starting with 3 months. Let’s call it a trial marriage.

After all, if it fails, the despotic corporate totalitarians who run the world will continue to steal our money and make everyone all too intimately familiar with the word “precariat.”

Here are 8 reasons why you should be thrilled with this, as I am:

The exciting details of Occupy, version 2, are here.

And here are my 8 reasons:

I’ve been hoping (Read more…)

Politics, Re-Spun: Stop. Obeying. The. Rich. NOW!

Once upon a time, we were taught to envy and respect our “betters,” like the rich.

No more.

They’re taking our money and throwing us under the bus every day. And it’s not even just the super-rich or those in America, it’s the aspirational rich; they’re just as toxic.

This stops now, it’s time to ramp up the Occupy Movement again, and for good this time:

The super-rich of the 21st century no longer think that you and I are needed for their continued success.

And in some ways, they have given up on America, period.

As Paul Buchheit brilliantly (Read more…)

Politics, Re-Spun: Yes, Your Parents’ Standard of Living Was Better

Ugh. We’re so much poorer than our parents!

Yes, your parents’ standard of living was better, so what are you going to do about it?

When I was growing up in the 1970s, most [maybe 80%?] of my friends had a mom who stayed home and didn’t work.

Over the last 40 years the proportion of single income households seems to have flipped so that it seems to be only about 20%.

So what’s wrong with this graph over there?

There’s a huge increase in the number of families with more than one income source in the last 40 (Read more…)

Politics, Re-Spun: Don’t Tolerate Ignorance About the Minimum Wage

Now, stop tolerating ignorance! And smile, TGIF.

Hello.

It’s Friday.

For many people it’s TGIF. But for many people who aren’t even teenagers, the work week isn’t ending today.

We often THINK minimum wage is for the new entries to the job market. Maybe it was one day. Maybe just for one day.

But today? If it isn’t a living wage, it’s exploitative.

And if it is just minimum wage, we are likely not too accurate on who is suffering with these low wages.

Let’s take a peek:

It is not the stereotypical pothead living in their parents’ basement.

(Read more…)

Politics, Re-Spun: Stop Listening to the Big Oil Spin!

Do the math. Please.

For a great long time, I’ve been talking about how we must dump the oil, gas, fracking, tankers, pipelines, coal…all the carbon-based energy systems because of climate breakdown [aka climate change, aka global warming, aka the greenhouse effect]. We need to transform our society to a post-carbon energy infrastructure.

The lie that there are billions in government revenue and 90 gazillion jobs just waiting for us all (sigh) is so incredibly compelling. But if you look at some data, like…facts, you might find some startling surprises that indicate that you’ve been swallowed whole by the carbon-based (Read more…)

Politics, Re-Spun: Science + Good Policy = Averting Climate Breakdown: Go!

Can you do it?

Can you be inspired by the strong possibility that we can move to a post-carbon energy infrastructure, like I wrote about yesterday?

Can you not reject science like the tarsands-addicted bad employee of ours, Mr. Harper?

Can you see that, as a species, we must choose policy that is based on science and evidence to avert climate breakdown?

If not, leave this website and never come back. I don’t want you here.

If so, click here:

Abrupt climate change is not only imminent, it’s already here.

– David Biello, December4, 2013 [before the polar vortex (Read more…)

Politics, Re-Spun: You Have NOT Grown Numb to Crisis

“The goal was to touch upon the fear of becoming numb to crises that don’t affect you directly.”

With a myriad of crises in the world, we fear becoming numb to their severity and how they can make us so depressed.

I think on a large scale, political, environmental and other crises can be overwhelming. But if we frame crises as struggles of individuals in situations, it’s easier to relate to our human need to help others, and seek justice.

This Norwegian experiment proves we have what it takes as a species: plus, 7.4 million views IN JUST (Read more…)

Politics, Re-Spun: Build Worker Solidarity Now or Suffer the Wrath of the 1%

Working people need to seek out solidarity opportunities.

Unions and unionized workers need to reach out to non-unionized workers and seek legislative improvements for all, like improvements to the EI and doubling the CPP and renegotiating the Canada Health Accord and expanding Medicare and getting a national pharmacare program and starting a national childcare program and building a poverty reduction plan and a national housing strategy and no longer funding First Peoples at third world conditions. And the list, actually, does go on.

And public sector workers need to build solidarity with private sector workers, whose union density is declining.

(Read more…)

Politics, Re-Spun: SUPPORT: Auto Unions in the US and Canada are on a Roll

With all the union busting and union bashing going on by the 1% and their compradors in government, it’s nice to see the labour movement getting some traction.

The next few days in Tennessee and Ontario could move workplace democracy and the 99% ahead significantly, with thousands of new unionized jobs to support families and communities. Here’s how.

Two huge organizing drives are going on to unionize autoworkers at two plants. Voting takes place THIS WEEK for Volkswagen workers in Tennessee to join the UAW and a multi-union pro-organizing rally for Toyota workers happens on Sunday in Kitchener to support (Read more…)

Politics, Re-Spun: What is Soft Fascism, Anyway?

I keep writing about soft fascism. Why is that, anyway?

Soft fascism is a process of anti-democratic governing that is not as overtly totalitarian or authoritarian as more historically memorable fascist states. Soft fascist governing has features like:

corrupt electoral processes legislative tactics that undermine democratic engagement warrantless monitoring of citizens limiting the time that legislatures sit silencing of public servants disregarding court rulings against legislative abuses criminalizing dissent

Naomi Wolf’s 2007 book, The End of America: A Letter of Warning to a Young Patriot, and her article in the UK’s Guardian newspaper helped begin an analysis of how (Read more…)

Politics, Re-Spun: This Week Will Clobber You, Politically

I apologize in advance, British Columbia.

This will be the week from hell, and it started yesterday while we were all Family Day-ing. Hold your breath:

Yesterday, the Conservative Soft Fascist Party of Canada rammed through the “Fair (sic) Elections Act” that will further protect us from the possibility of fair elections into the future. The next Fair Elections Act will likely give corporations the vote. Because why not, they’re people too! Actually, they’re more human than us in so many ways. And it’s actually called corporatism, not so much the fascism. In recent weeks we heard that the (Read more…)

Politics, Re-Spun: If You Value Democracy, Call Your Nearest Conservative MP, NOW!

Call your nearest Conservative MP right now, until 330pm today, west coast time. Let them know that their Orwellian-named “Fair” Elections Act is clearly designed to further erode democracy and we see through it. See below for where you can contact such MPs.

We can’t let them ram this through, or else we’ll become even more of a banana republic.

Hold the phone

Without warning, the Harper government is ramming through legislation that will seriously undermine democracy in Canada. It was just introduced a few days ago, but could be adopted by the House of Commons as early as Monday (Read more…)

Politics, Re-Spun: Because You’re Not As Dumb As They Think You Are!

Today is Friday. Let’s make it “think for ourselves Friday.”

It’ll work: the government/corporations/1% won’t see it coming!

Twitter / occupythemob: http://t.co/doHx1xWO4l.

December 17, 2013 Fried Squirrels (0) December 20, 2013 Enbridge: What Now? We Escalate Our Fight (4) January 7, 2012 Day Two of Tragedy of the Market: From Crisis to Commons (0) January 7, 2012 Opening Panel from the Tragedy of the Market: From Crisis to Commons (0)

Politics, Re-Spun: Canada’s Growing Income Gap Between the 99% and the 1%

The rich are getting richer and poor are getting poorer, and the gap between them is growing.

This is the test of whether we can be content in our complacency. Here’s why.

In 2010, a tax filer required an annual income of $201,400 to be in the top 1%. This was 37% higher than the threshold value of $147,500 in 1982, when the data series began. (All dollar figures in this text are expressed in 2010 constant dollars.)

The income gap between the top 1% and the rest of filers has widened over time. In 1982, the median income of the top 1% of filers was $191,600. This was seven (Read more…)

Politics, Re-Spun: Jesse Ventura Is On Our Side On Racist Team Names

More support for changing the name of the NFL team in Washington comes from Jesse “The Body” Ventura. Yesterday, I wrote about how incredibly easy it would be to change the racist name of any kind of team. It’s really not that hard. Imagine the reverse, though. Imagine changing the Vancouver “Canucks” to the Vancouver “Insert racist slur here.” Somewhat inconceivable, so it should be easy to do the reverse, and fix the Washington NFL team name, as well as the other racist team names.

Now, hear how Jesse Ventura puts it:

 

Just as the N word (Read more…)

Politics, Re-Spun: Capitalism: Swing Your Sledgehammer

It’s all about vision and hope, in an effort to envision how economics and markets can exist after the toxicity of capitalism is gone, gone gone. Are you up for it?

Last night, John Holloway, author of Crack Capitalism, was the SFU Institute for the Humanities‘ guest lecturer, skyped in from Mexico. He was full of inspiration and clarity. Enjoy my twitter reflections below.

[View the story "John Holloway on Fixing Capitalism" on Storify]

January 7, 2012 Day Two of Tragedy of the Market: From Crisis to Commons (0) January 7, 2012 Opening Panel from the Tragedy (Read more…) . . . → Read More: Politics, Re-Spun: Capitalism: Swing Your Sledgehammer

Politics, Re-Spun: What’s With Pipeline-Loving Old Men?

High 5′s to people are aren’t old men! [on average, 19 times out of 20, +/- 3.6% of the time.]

My apologies if you’re a man, or over 55, but those two demographics love the Big Oil, and they’re giving you all a bad name!

Here’s why.

I know lots of men and people over 55 who know that moving to a post-carbon energy infrastructure is the only sustainable future. The problem is convincing their peers that getting rid of their Lexus [it used to be Hummer] is in everyone’s best interest.

Maybe it’s because some of those (Read more…)