“Patriotism assumes that our globe is divided into little spots, each one surrounded by an iron gate. Those who have had the fortune of being born on some particular spot, consider themselves better, nobler, grander, more intelligent than the living beings inhabiting any other spot. It is, therefore, the duty of everyone living on that chosen spot to fight, kill, and die in the attempt to impose his superiority upon all the others.”
-EMMA GOLDMAN, Anarchism and Other Essays
Celebrating Canada’s ‘nationhood’ seems a little trite and ephemeral to me. Woo, ethnic cleansing, woo cultural genocide and the (Read more…)
Miscellaneous material to start your week.
- Emmanuel Saez examines the U.S.’ latest income inequality numbers and finds that the gap between the wealthy few and everybody else is still growing. The Equality Trust finds that the UK’s tax system is already conspicuously regressive even as the Cameron Cons plan to make it more so. And Tom Clark reviews Anthony Atkinson’s Inequality, featuring the observation that even returning to the distribution of the 1970s will require major (if needed) changes to the economic assumptions we’ve meekly accepted since then.
- Andrew Mitrovica comments on the Cons’ pandering (Read more…)
Grand Chief Stewart Phillip is among the First Nations leaders demanding a halt to Site C construction (D. Gillis)
BC Hydro is intent on bulldozing ahead with Site C Dam construction in the coming weeks, despite seven different federal and provincial court cases currently in progress over the $9 Billion proposed project. That attitude is rubbing First Nations leaders the wrong way.
Hydro above the law?
The First Nations Leadership Council, comprised of the three big provincial First Nations bodies – the Union of BC Indian Chiefs, the First Nations Summit and the BC Assembly of First Nations – came out swinging Thursday in defence (Read more…)
Assorted content to start your week.
- Sean Illing writes about the utterly misplaced view of the privileged few that they can or should be treated as immune from the environmental realities facing everybody: I see the decadence of the people in Rancho Santa Fe as a microcosm of America today, particularly corporate America. What these people exhibit, apart from their smugness, is a complete absence of any sense of collective responsibility. They can’t see and aren’t interested in the consequences of their actions. And they can’t muster a modicum of moderation in the face of enormous scarcity. Every resource, (Read more…)
Sure, it might be tempting to say there’s no difference at all between this… The federal government touted a number of initiatives Wednesday for improving First Nations’ well-being but could not explain why a new report showed the prosperity gap between aboriginal and non-aboriginal people was widening in some cases.
The report, released by the federally appointed National Aboriginal Economic Development Board, found that First Nations living on reserves had shown the least improvement.
Relying on 2006 and 2011 census data, the report found the non-aboriginal employment rate went from 62.7 per cent to 61.2 per cent. For (Read more…)
This and that for your Thursday reading.
- Daniel Tencer discusses the latest evidence that trickle-down economics are a fraud, while David Roberts and Javier Zarracina write about how the elite seems to get its own way even when the results are worse for everybody. And Heather Stewart reports on the IMF’s findings as to the connection between financialization, inequality and stagnation as the extraction of wealth comes to be valued more than the production of anything useful.
- Meanwhile, Simon Enoch and Cheryl Stadnichuk observe that Saskatchewan is headed down a well-worn path to ruin based on the Wall (Read more…)
The summary report of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada was released last week. The work of the Commission took seven years, gathering public and private testimony from survivors and families of survivors of Canada’s state- and Church-sanctioned residential school system—a system that forcibly removed from families, assimilated and often killed Indigenous children. The Commission’s conclusion was stark: Canada committed cultural genocide on Indigenous peoples.
My first guest is Indigenous scholar Vanessa Watts-Powless. Vanessa is Mohawk and Anishnaabe and teaches in Indigenous Studies at McMaster University. With Hayden King, a previous (Read more…)
Assorted content to end your week.
- Chris Mooney takes a look at the positive side of social influences on behaviour, as new research shows a correlation between spending time with neighbours and an interest in the environmental issues which affect us all. But Adam Stoneman documents how another form of social interaction – that of wealth flaunting – promotes conspicuous consumption which benefits nobody.
- Tim Harper slams the Cons for looking to attack aboriginal Canadians rather than work with them – a particularly serious problem in the wake of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s report. Don Martin writes (Read more…)
Inspired by Nora Loreto [again], I am starting to frame my vision for what Canada should be after C-51, the TRC report and the October 19, 2015 federal election.
Here are my initial thoughts:
I’d love it for the very foundation upon which Canada [sic] is built, to crumble! We can start a national dialogue to re-imagine it, but way better than for 1982. This time, let’s go with:
– a distinct Quebec society– First Nations at the table as equals– repeal C-51 and get our Charter back– repeal the Indian Act– no Senate– (Read more…)
Last week’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission report called Canada’s residential school policy “cultural genocide”. Reacting, both Trudeau and Mulcair avoided mentioning the two loaded words.
The post TRC report: Canadian party leaders avoided term “cultural genocide” appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.
This and that for your Sunday reading.
- The World Bank’s latest World Development Report discusses how readily-avoidable scarcity in severely limit individual development. Melissa Kearney and Philip Levine write that poverty and a lack of social mobility tend to create a vicious cycle of despair. And James Ridgeway examines the deliberate interference aimed at preventing many of the U.S.’ poor from ever building secure lives.
- Meanwhile, Mark Thoma reminds us of the role the labour movement needs to play in ensuring greater equality across the income spectrum. And Deirdre Fulton writes that the first tentative steps (Read more…)
The trailer for Lisa Jackson‘s fine documentary: How a People Live, the story of the Gwa’sala-‘Nakwaxda’xw Nations of BC.
The full 45 minute documentary is available through the CBC Player. I recommend it.
The trailer for another short film by Lisa Jackson, available with many others on her website linked above.
Here, on how we should expect our leaders to respond to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s report on residential schools – and what we’ve seen from the Cons instead.
For further reading…- PressProgress offers the video of Bernard Valcourt sticking out like a sore thumb in his refusal to consider missing and murdered indigenous women to merit any action. And Lucia Lorenzi points out that the Cons are blocking action to deal with violence against women in any form.- CBC reports on the federal parties’ respective responses to the Commission’s report, while the Hansard text of Stephen (Read more…)
This and that for your Thursday reading.
- Genevieve LeBaron, Johanna Montgomerie, and Daniela Tepe-Belfrage write that inequality is getting worse in the UK based on class, gender and all kinds of other grounds, while a supposed “recovery” isn’t benefiting anybody except the people who least need it: (E)conomic policies associated with ‘recovery’ in the UK have deepened inequality and exclusion along the overlapping lines of class, gender, race, ability, age and sexuality. Sweeping welfare reforms, for instance, are disproportionately targeting women and low-income couples with children, with particularly dire consequences for single mothers. The newly imposed ‘bedroom (Read more…)
They are images that should haunt every Canadian. Native children taken away from the parents by the RCMP and sent to residential schools with more cemeteries than playgrounds.And even though our generation wasn't to blame for that story of brutality and attempted cultural genocide, we can't look away or ignore the problem.Because it is still an open wound that needs healing.And as the Globe points out, it was, it is, and it will always be our story. Canada's story. Read more »
This and that for your Sunday reading.
- Jim Stanford points out how the corporate tax pendulum is swinging back toward asking business to make an equitable contribution to Canadian society: The federal rate was cut virtually in half after 2000 (to just 15 per cent today). Several provincial governments followed suit. Alberta was the most aggressive, slashing its rate by more than one-third (to just 10 per cent) by 2006. This sparked a destructive race to the bottom among provinces – aided by explicit threats from companies to move head offices to Alberta if other provinces didn’t follow suit. (Read more…)
Several Canadian law experts released this statement applauding the Tsleil-Waututh Nation’s snub of Kinder Morgan pipeline and tanker expansion proposal
The post Canadian law experts applaud Tsleil-Waututh Nation snub of Kinder Morgan pipeline appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.
This and that for your Thursday reading.
- Heather Stewart writes about the OECD’s study showing the connection between increasingly precarious work and worsening inequality.
- Tara Deschamps reports on a few of the challenges facing poor Torontonians, while Sara Mojtehedzadeh and Laurie Monsebraaten cover the United Way’s report card showing that most workers are now stuck in precarious work. And Star offers a few policy suggestions to improve that situation, while Ella Bedard points out how Andrew Cash is pushing for solutions at the federal level.
- Edward Keenan writes that it’s long past time to stop relying (Read more…)
Gitxsan members blockade Highway 16 last December (Photo submitted)
Read this May 20 story by Alicia Bridges in Smithers Interior News on plans by grassroots Gitxsan members and hereditary chiefs to block a pro-LNG info session being held by the Gitxsan Development Corporation, the province and industry tomorrow.
Gitxsan LNG pipeline opponents plan to block provincial government officials and members of the Gitxsan Development Corporation (GDC) from holding an LNG information session at the Kispiox Hall tomorrow morning.
Two presentations organized by the B.C. government and the GDC are scheduled to take place on Gitxsan First Nation territory tomorrow (Read more…)
FULL DISCLOSURE: I worked as a mainstream news reporter between 2003 and 2012. News media goes where many cannot or will not. It infiltrates the halls of power, the courtrooms, protest sites, war zones and scenes of tragedy. It is, unquestionably, the source of much of the information used to inform and shape society. Its […]
Tahltan First Nations and supporters peacefully occupying a Fortune Minerals drill (Beyond Boarding)
Recent events in Canada have shown not only that change is possible, but that people won’t stand for having corporate interests put before their own.
When plummeting oil prices late last year threw Alberta into financial crisis, people rightly asked, “Where’s the money?” They could see that an oil producer like Norway was able to weather the price drop thanks to forward planning, higher costs to industry to exploit resources and an oil fund worth close to $1 trillion! Leading up to the election, the government (Read more…)
Assorted content for your weekend reading.
- Lana Payne writes that the great Canadian revenue debate is well underway, with far more leaders willing to push for needed taxes than in recent years: There is new political space to talk corporate taxes again, to talk about raising them. Rachel Notley, the new NDP premier of Alberta, won on a platform that promised fair taxation, raising corporate taxes, and getting a fair share of resources for citizens.
Newfoundland and Labrador must have the same conversation and review of resource royalties.
Even the federal Liberals have realized that the tide is turning (Read more…)
The NDP’s historic triumph in Alberta shows that ordinary people can overcome corporate power and effect democratic change, argues environmentalist David Suzuki.
The post David Suzuki: Signs of change are sweeping the nation appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.