Prog Blog’s Flickr Photostream

Accidental Deliberations: Wednesday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material for your mid-week reading.- David Ball talks to Joseph Stiglitz about inequality and its causes – including the spread of corporate control through trade agreements:What would you say is the dominant cause [of growing inequality]… . . . → Read More: Accidental Deliberations: Wednesday Morning Links

Accidental Deliberations: Tuesday Morning Links

This and that for your Tuesday reading.- David Olive talks to Robert Reich about his work fighting inequality:There are certain irrefutable facts besides water always running downhill. There is no arguing, for instance, that the U.S. era Reich describe… . . . → Read More: Accidental Deliberations: Tuesday Morning Links

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: SaskPower’s Plan Isn’t Ambitious

SaskPower’s new target, announced by the Premier last week, is out. .@PremierBradWall @SKGov This doesn't seem overly ambitious, given #ABclimate's goals. Can't Sask do more than Alberta? #skpoli #PowerToGrow — John Klein (@JohnKleinRegina) November 23, 2015 We’re procuring 100 MW of wind generation in 2016 and will develop up to 1600 MW between 2019-2030. #powertogrow […] . . . → Read More: Saskboy’s Abandoned Stuff: SaskPower’s Plan Isn’t Ambitious

Accidental Deliberations: Monday Morning Links

Assorted content to start your week.- Upstream offers a summary of the Canadian Institute for Health Information’s latest report, with particular emphasis on growing inequality in health metrics due to social factors despite increased funding into the … . . . → Read More: Accidental Deliberations: Monday Morning Links

Alberta Politics: Alberta’s climate-change strategy: Rachel Notley builds a coalition of big business, environmentalists and civil society

PHOTOS: Alberta Premier Rachel Notley with leaders of the remarkable coalition on climate change her NDP government has built (Government of Alberta Photo). Below: Brian Jean, Alberta’s complaint-of-the-day Opposition leader; Gary Doer, three-term ND… . . . → Read More: Alberta Politics: Alberta’s climate-change strategy: Rachel Notley builds a coalition of big business, environmentalists and civil society - Alberta Politics: Who said what about the NDP’s ambitious Made-in-Alberta Climate Change Plan

Pigs continued to fly in Alberta politics today as energy industry leaders and environmental groups joined Premier Rachel Notley and Environment and Parks Minister Shannon Phillips at a press conference to release Alberta’s much anticipated plan… . . . → Read More: – Alberta Politics: Who said what about the NDP’s ambitious Made-in-Alberta Climate Change Plan

Accidental Deliberations: Sunday Morning Links

This and that for your Sunday reading.- Louis-Philippe Rochon explains how higher taxes on the wealthy can be no less a boon for the economy than for the goal of social equality:In fact, empirical analysis shows that while the relationship between hig… . . . → Read More: Accidental Deliberations: Sunday Morning Links

Accidental Deliberations: Saturday Morning Links

Assorted content for your weekend reading.- Karen Brettel and David Rohde discuss how the cult of shareholder value is destroying the concept of corporations actually making anything useful. And Deirdre Hipwell writes that the financial-sector workers … . . . → Read More: Accidental Deliberations: Saturday Morning Links

The Progressive Economics Forum: Is your pension in climate denial?

Fossil fuel divestment campaigns have become a focus for climate change organizing, targeting university endowments, churches, foundations and pension funds. While the motivations are primarily moral—if it is wrong to wreck the climate, it is wrong to profit from that wreckage—there are important economic arguments for divestment.

If we are to have a reasonable chance at staying below 2°C of global warming – the target for international negotiations – between two-thirds and four-fifths of proven fossil fuel reserves (those already near development) will need to stay underground, forever.

This situation is even more dire for Canada due to our economic reliance (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: Tuesday Morning Links

This and that for your Tuesday reading.

- Martin Whittaker reminds us that the American public is eager for a far more fair distribution of income than the one provided for by the U.S.’ current political and economic ground rules. But Christo Aivalis writes that there’s a difference between a preference and a cause – and that we need to do far more to shift the fight for equality into the latter category.

- Ed Struzik discusses how climate change is affecting Alberta’s cattle ranges facing unprecedented droughts. And Emily Chung reports on new research showing that our (Read more…)

Michal Rozworski: Podcast: Climate and the state, refugees in Europe


Two interviews this week on two human-made crises: first, my conversation author and academic Christian Parenti on the climate crisis and the role of the state followed by journalist Jesse Rosenfeld with an update on the refugee crisis in Europe.

Christian Parenti is author of numerous books, most recently Tropic of Chaos: Climate Change and the New Geography of Violence, and he teaches in the Labour Studies program at NYU. He spoke with me about the complex relationship between the state and climate change mitigation under capitalism, also the subject of a recent article of his in (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: Saturday Morning Links

Assorted content for your weekend reading.

- Lana Payne points out that even some of the world’s wealthiest individuals are highlighting the need for governments to step up in addressing major collective action problems such as climate change and inequality. And Angella MacEwen offers one important example of that principle being put into practice, writing that Quebec’s family-friendly parental leave policies have made a major impact in improving both social and economic outcomes.

- Duncan Weldon observes that wages will face conflicting pressures in the years to come, as increased replacement of work with new technology is weighed against a (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: Friday Morning Links

Assorted content to end your week.

- Julie Delahanty discusses the need for Canada’s federal government to rein in rising inequality. And Tim Stacey duly challenges the excuse that today’s poor people just aren’t poor enough to deserve any consideration.

- Amy Goodman interviews Joseph Stiglitz about the serious problems with the Trans-Pacific Partnership. Andrea Germanos reports that Margaret Chan, Director-General of the World Health Organization, is joining the chorus pointing out how the TPP will affect public health. And Andy Blatchford points out how the TPP’s intellectual property provisions are designed to enrich the U.S. at the expense (Read more…)

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: A Committee Of None

Five years ago, I attended a “stakeholder” meeting at a hotel, hosted by the Provincial Government. They were touting their newish 2020 “plan” to reduce climate change.

There was consensus among participants that in order to achieve the provincial target of 20% reduction over 2006 emissions by 2020, additional measures should be taken to achieve emission reductions in a larger portion of the oil and gas sector.

(emphasis added)

Advisory Council 9 (1) The Climate Change Advisory Council is established. (2) The council consists of the minister and not more than 11 other members appointed by the Lieutenant Governor in (Read more…)

Politics and its Discontents: Some Surprising Findings

Whether it is due to what has been called The Francis Effect or the increasingly severe weather that so many parts of the world are experiencing, a recent study finds that more and more Americans are beginning to appreciate the threat posed by climate change. Additionally and rather surprisingly, even those who are disengaged from the issue or completely skeptical support the development of alternative, clean technologies:

Meanwhile, here at home, a majority of Canadians favour imposing new taxes on fossil fuels such as gasoline, heating oil, and natural gas to reduce greenhouse gases and overwhelmingly endorse the growth of (Read more…)

Scripturient: Climate Change and Collingwood

Climate change is arguably the single most pressing, most important, most challenging issue to affect governments at this time. Our world is suffering and weather is getting extreme in many parts. It’s affecting crops, wildlife, safety, water… everything. But what are Canadian municipalities doing to combat it, to reign in their use of fossil fuels, […]

Accidental Deliberations: Thursday Morning Links

This and that for your Thursday reading.

- Seth Klein discusses the need to deal with climate change with the same sense of urgency and common purpose we’ve historically associated with major wars: Canada’s experience in WWI and WWII serves to remind us that our society has managed a dramatic restructuring of the economy before. During both world wars, our economy had to be entirely re-tooled for a new common purpose: scarce resources were deployed for the task at hand, Victory Bonds were sold, profits were restricted to prevent war-time profiteering, new taxes were levied, household consumption shifted and quotas (Read more…)

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: Saskatchewan Party Can’t Hit a Moving Target

As Brad Wall goes to Paris to represent Saskatchewan at the COP 21 climate conference, here’s how his government handles critical climate targets:

If you can’t hit a target, remove the target and bury it until forgotten. 2 years ago I saved the text of a Sask Gov’t website, predicting it would soon be altered. It was.

“Saskatchewan has established a provincial target to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 20% below 2006 levels by 2020.” CBC thought it’s still the goal. There’s no mention of it on Government webpages that I can find now.

replaced with: “Saskatchewan’s (Read more…)

Politics and its Discontents: Catherine McKenna In Paris

The international community is “really excited” to see Canada back at the table for climate change talks in Paris, Canada’s new environment and climate change minister said Tuesday.

May concrete and substantial action follow. Recommend this Post

Environmental Law Alert Blog: Is our atmosphere critical infrastructure? The Canadian government responds

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Recently we received a series of replies from the Canadian government to our suggestion that the global atmosphere was critical infrastructure, at least as essential to our national security as pipelines and highways.We learned that Public Safety Canada recognizes that climate change can have a huge impact on Canada’s security, but that the agency that is responsible for climate change – Environment Canada – had no answers to our questions. We’re left with the impression that the Canadian government as a whole, at least to date, has not appreciated the security implications of climate change.

(Read more…)

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: Joe, You Can Go Now

Why I’m really, really, really glad Joe Oliver isn’t Finance Minister anymore:

Keystone XL would have created jobs, bolstered ec growth, strengthened nat’l security, reduced GHG emissions and enhanced N Am energy indep Therefore, disappointing President Obama rejected Keystone X. See yesterday’s article where I discuss implications. http://business. financialpost. com/fp-comment/..[thiscrapisntworthreadingfurther] See my interview #CBC #newsworld on disappointing Keystone rejection & triumph of politics & symbolism over facts.

Enabling more bitumen to flow from Alberta would not lower GHG emissions, so you can bet the rest of his claims are false too.

The day before:

See my article in Nat’l (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: On suckers’ bets

We’ve sure learned some important lessons from the failure of the first billion-dollar Boundary Dam CCS project: SaskPower’s president, Mike Marsh, says the company had hoped to make a decision on whether to retrofit another two units at Boundary Dam power plant by next year.

But on Monday, Marsh told reporters that decision has been pushed back to 2017.

“You don’t undertake a project in excess of $1 billion without having your facts,” Marsh said.

Meanwhile, Brad Wall’s plan is still to hope that the rest of the world is paying little enough attention to be suckered into making the same (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: Tuesday Morning Links

This and that for your Tuesday reading.

- Chris Hedges weighs in on the Trans-Pacific Partnership’s entrenchment of corporate control over mere citizens, while PressProgress highlights just a few of the more obvious dangers it poses. And Blayne Haggart points out that the TPP has nothing at all to do with free trade. TPP-like agreements are no longer exclusively or even primarily about reducing traditional trade barriers. As Harvard economist Dani Rodrik notes in his 2011 book The Globalization Paradox, with some exceptions (such as Canada’s dairy industry), tariffs have never been lower. Any gains from further reductions would (Read more…)

Susan on the Soapbox: POTUS Kills Keystone XL

On Friday Barack Obama refused to issue a presidential permit allowing TCPL’s Keystone XL pipeline to cross the border between Canada and the United States.


Obama rejected KXL because it wouldn’t meaningfully contribute to the economy, reduce gas prices or enhance America’s energy security. He described the urgent need to transition to a clean energy economy and while he didn’t say it, it’s easier to kill a project that doesn’t exist than one that does.

TCPL’s response to Obama’s decision was slightly (but not much) more nuanced than Steven Harper’s “no brainer” comment. CEO Russ Girling said: “Today, misplaced (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: Thursday Morning Links

This and that for your Thursday reading.

- Jim Stanford examines what Canada’s federal election says about our attitudes toward economic choices: (P)rogressives need to advance our own economic agenda, to fill the vacuum left by the failure of the Conservative vision. The modest infrastructure spending and small, temporary deficits that form the centerpiece of the Liberal macro plan certainly do not constitute an alternative agenda. So we have a lot of work to do.

In conclusion, I believe that the power of progressive economic ideas has become modestly stronger in Canada. The federal election campaign both reflected progress that (Read more…)