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The Canadian Progressive: UBC Must Divest From Fossil Fuel Companies: Faculty Members

Open letter signed by 215 University of British Columbia faculty members asks university to divest from destructive fossil fuel companies within five years.

The post UBC Must Divest From Fossil Fuel Companies: Faculty Members appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

Accidental Deliberations: New column day

Here, on how the City of Regina has learned a painful lesson about the Saskatchewan Party’s habit of accepting credit but not responsibility on P3 projects.

For further reading…- Emma Graney reports on how the province forced the City to foot the bill for immediate site development costs here.- For background on how decisions about education have been taken out of the hands of elected school boards, Joseph Garcea and Dustin Monroe examine the history of education funding in Saskatchewan (and other provinces) here (PDF).- And finally, I’ll point back to my earlier columns as to (Read more…)

Dead Wild Roses: Trumpeting the Nordic Model – How Socialism Wins the Day

Damn, Ólafur Grímsson, President of Iceland, is getting cocky. For good reason of course. Keeping the people that run your country and businesses educated and healthy = productivity and innovation.


Shocked I am. Positively aghast.


Filed under: Education, International Affairs, Politics Tagged: Neo-Liberal Troll Bait., Nordic Countries, Socialism, Welfare State

Dead Wild Roses: Oooo..Context.

Us humans seem to have trouble keeping the big picture in focus while we faff about feeling important about ourselves. Mother Nature just doesn’t have time for us or our problems. It is nice to be reminded of that periodically.

Filed under: Education Tagged: Context, Humanity, Mother Nature

Song of the Watermelon: An Open Letter to Janet Fraser

Dear Janet Fraser, First of all, let me start by congratulating you on your school board election victory this past Saturday. I voted for you enthusiastically, as I did your running mate Mischa Oak and the rest of the Green Party team on the city council and park board slates. It is truly gratifying to see a Green set to hold the balance of power on one of Vancouver’s three elected municipal bodies. Which brings me to my main reason for writing today. School board is scheduled to select a chairperson on December 8. I don’t know what direction you (Read more…)

Dead Wild Roses: You Can’t Say That in English! – Untranslatable Words.


I’m a big fan of the German word – whenever I pick up tools, verschlimmbessern is often the result. :>


Filed under: Education Tagged: Ethnosphere, Helpful Infographics, Language, Things You Can’t Say In English

Dead Wild Roses: Noam Chomsky Spoke at the UN in October – I Didn’t Hear About it Either.

Ah, the joy of the free press down in the US. Let’s catch up with Noam as takes us through some possible solutions to the Palestine/Israel conflict.


Filed under: Education, International Affairs, Media Tagged: Israel, Noam Chomsky, Palestine, UN

Dead Wild Roses: Do Something Useful Remembrance Day – Dirty Wars Documentary- Jeremy Scahill

You know what Remembrance Day should be for?

1. Remembering all those who have died in war. Precedence on the civilian deaths, because they die at far higher rate than any established military force.

2. Educate yourself as to what war is and how it is waged.

3. Take action to prevent future war and the inevitable human suffering that goes along with the organized murder we like to call warfare.

Today I’m all about the second bullet point.

Full Documentary

Have your minute of silence. Then take an additional hour and a half to get (Read more…)

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: Conservatives Learning Lessons of History

11. Government handing over the most vulnerable to religious groups has worked out well in Canadian history: look at the residential schools

— Jeet Heer (@HeerJeet) November 10, 2014

1. Canada is now a country that will offer sex workers the "option" of being sent to religious reeducation camps:

— Jeet Heer (@HeerJeet) November 10, 2014

I’ll give old clothes to Salvation Army, and shop in their thrift shops, but I wouldn’t attend a re-education camp of theirs.

@HeerJeet Also, how will people of First Nations descent caught up in this react to being offered 'ride out of (Read more…)

The Misanthropic Bird: Apprentice. Intern. Slave.

The employment climate for many students and graduates has been a difficult terrain to not only navigate but also survive. And slavery masked under labels of ‘apprentice’ or ‘intern’ only make it worse.

Infographic: The 99% vs. The 1%,

Bogged down with insurmountable student debts, and often forced to take remedial positions to make ends meet, many of this educated generation are enticed by intern or apprentice programs – hoping that their volunteered time could break them into their fields, making them some real money. However, with the rising cost of living most are unable to dedicate (Read more…)

The Canadian Progressive: New student coalition vows to block tar sands pipelines at Quebec border

A new student coalition promises to block Transcanada’s Energy East and Enbridge’s line 9B tar sands pipeline projects “at Quebec border.”

The post New student coalition vows to block tar sands pipelines at Quebec border appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

Accidental Deliberations: Wednesday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material for your mid-week reading.

- Duncan Cameron discusses how Canada can respond to being stalled economically: In 2011 median earnings in Canada were $30,000. That means one-half of Canadian workers earned less than $30,000. What is more to the point is that earnings in 2011 were $1,800 below the level attained in 1977 (inflation adjusted 2011 dollars)! The pay packet for workers shrunk over that 24 year period.

It’s a big stall — an awful lot of Canadians are not getting ahead.…What has escaped economic stagnation, and gone up in value is what Thomas Piketty called patrimonial (Read more…)

Political Eh-conomy: Means-test the rich, or another argument for eliminating tuition

Here’s an oversimplified choice for how to fund post-secondary education. Imagine you have two options for dealing with how people pay for post-secondary education:

Universal free tuition, means-testing to see if you are rich enough to pay Universal tuition fees, means-testing to see if you are poor enough to not pay

Either of these can be brought into being in many ways. At base, however, these are two roughly symmetrical ways of achieving the same thing. Right now in Canada, we have a version of (2): tuition and a complex system of need-based grants and scholarships, student loans and tax (Read more…)

Dead Wild Roses: Insensitivity To Sample Size – Stats on a Saturday?

Statistics is an area that I’m interested in. I’m not keenly interested enough to take a stats course, but I do like learning about some of the basic concepts. Thanks Youtube.. :>


Filed under: Education Tagged: Sample Size, Statistics

Things Are Good: Germany Now Has Free Tuition

Germany has done something that the rest the developed world should copy: reducing post-secondary tuition fees to zero. Open and accessible education is key to making a richer and more prosperous country – Germany clearly gets this. In these modern times education is more important than ever so it’s really great to see

“We got rid of tuition fees because we do not want higher education which depends on the wealth of the parents,” Gabrielle Heinen-Kjajic, the minister for science and culture in Lower Saxony, said in a statement. Her words were echoed by many in the German government. “Tuition (Read more…)

Things Are Good: Feel Better By Visiting Your Local Library

It turns out that by simply using your local library you can improve your life – no matter what you read. As long as you make use of what the library provides you can find your well-being increased. What are you waiting for?

How do you quantify a public good? Library supporters have struggled with this problem for a long time, as public libraries are often the first institutions up on a budget-slasher’s chopping block. But a recent study from the London School of Economics bolsters the value of libraries in a major way. By translating well-being gained from visits (Read more…)

Susan on the Soapbox: Jim Prentice’s First Week in Office–Straight out of the Corporate Playbook

“As of this moment, Alberta is under new management.” — Jim Prentice, 16th Premier of Alberta*

Transition. There’s nothing more unsettling; no, strike that, nerve-wracking, for an organization than a change-out of senior leadership, particularly when the old leader is universally regarded as an abject failure (will I be condemned by association?) and the new leader is hailed as the messiah (am I within his orbit of influence?).

Mr Prentice

Mr Prentice knows that the burden of a successful transition, in this case from the tired old PC party to the shiny new PC (Read more…)

Northern Insight / Perceptivity: #bced in my twitterverse

On @globalnews Sandy @Garossino suggested readings of J.Griffin's judgement with findings of bad faith. Start here:

— Norm Farrell (@Norm_Farrell) September 10, 2014

"Democracy has to be born anew every generation, and education is its midwife." #bced #bcpoli

— Norm Farrell (@Norm_Farrell) September 10, 2014

Can`t afford public schools. Can afford billions to provide water & power to freeloading gas frackers. #bcpoli #bced

— Norm Farrell (@Norm_Farrell) September 10, 2014

MLA @AJWVictoriaBC "The government is acting like a schoolyard bully" #bced #bcpoli

— Norm Farrell (@Norm_Farrell) September 11, 2014

And (Read more…)

Northern Insight / Perceptivity: The real news gets ignored – REPLAY

I wrote the following article 3½ years ago. It demonstrates how little has changed.

On the day George Abbott became the first Education Minister to speak at a convention of the teachers’ union since Gordon Campbell’s election in 2001, BC Liberal media focused less on the warm response from educators than on what they say is a coming confrontation.

TC columnist Les Leyne headlines, “a battle is looming.” The Globe and Mail says “strike looms”, Global TV News leads “Strike by school teachers in this province seems unavoidable.” CTV’s Jim Beatty led with “A teachers’ strike is (Read more…)

Dead Wild Roses: The DWR Sunday Religious Disservice – Planting the Toxic Seed

Religion doesn’t just happen in the 21st century in the West. Religion must be instilled into children, magic and fable must be taught to be revered and most darkly, the fear of eternal punishment must be enshrined in young minds.

Hell for children is a very real fear – it torments their thoughts and causes a great deal of unnecessary anxiety. My question to the religious is simply this:

Why make your children fearful?

Isn’t there enough to worry about life with regards to food, shelter, and security to add another imaginary layer of anxiety to the (Read more…)

Northern Insight / Perceptivity: Government serves insiders and elites

It is clear that BC Liberal strategy is to reward insiders and elites. That’s been shown in countless ways, particularly since Christy Clark took office as Premier in 2011. Shortly after her return to Victoria, a handful of senior civil servants departed with millions in severance rewards, paid even if the ex-employees immediately gained equally rewarding work elsewhere, as all did. More millions were paid as severance to senior Liberals following the 2013 election.

However, people outside the Liberal orbit do not get the same generous treatment. Beverley Maxwell had been director of certification for the B.C. College of (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: Thursday Morning Links

This and that for your Thursday reading.

- The Broadbent Institute studies wealth inequality in Canada, and finds not only that the vast majority of Canada’s capital resources remain concentrated in very few hands but that the disparity continues to grow: The new Statistics Canada data show a deeply unequal Canada in which wealth is concentrated heavily in the top 10% while the bottom 10% hold more debts than assets.

The majority of Canadians, meanwhile, own almost no financial assets besides their pensions. The top 10% of Canadians accounted for almost half (47.9%) of all wealth in 2012.

In (Read more…)

Dead Wild Roses: The Best Revenge is Living a Good Life – i believe you, it’s not your fault.

Add i believe you, it’s not your fault to your bookmarks, your blog, your whatever. It is too important not to.


The Best Revenge is Living a Good Life. (TW Rape, Child Abuse)

I am the only female child in my family of four children and I am the youngest. When people hear that, they often think of me as the spoiled little princess child. Nothing could be further from the truth.

I was sexually abused by two of my brothers and, eventually, my father as well. My abused started when I was young. Five or six, (Read more…)

Northern Insight / Perceptivity: Planned degradation of public education

Principal reports on devastating budget cuts to parent population. Such honesty needed for all of BC. #bced #bcpoli

— Karen Richard (@KarenRichard14) September 10, 2014

Northern Insight / Perceptivity: UBC Professor of Law Joel Bakan speaks

“I see a lot of sense in the BCTF’s insistence on eliminating E80 from the package for consideration in binding arbitration…

“As is true of any negotiation, the respective bargaining positions of each party is determined by the prevailing legal framework concerning their respective rights. One cannot, for example, effectively negotiate a sale of land if the crucial legal issues concerning that land – such as zoning and permitted uses – are uncertain, or pending a court decision. …The same is true of any and every negotiation, including those between BCTF and the government – extant legal rights determine respective (Read more…)