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Parchment in the Fire: Greece eyes alliance of southern EU states – POLITICO

September conference planned with France, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Cyprus and Malta. Source: Greece eyes alliance of southern EU states – POLITICOFiled under: Eurozone crisis Tagged: France, Greece, Italy, Portugal, Southern Europe, Spain . . . → Read More: Parchment in the Fire: Greece eyes alliance of southern EU states – POLITICO

Alberta Politics: News Satire: U.S. will not tolerate foreigners acting like Americans, officials say

ILLUSTRATIONS: A map showing some of the countries in which the United States has interfered in the political process (grabbed from Geology.com). Below: U.S. CIA Director John O. Brennan, Democratic Party candidate Hillary Clinton and Republican candid… . . . → Read More: Alberta Politics: News Satire: U.S. will not tolerate foreigners acting like Americans, officials say

Left Over: There’s Somethin’ Happening Here…

I’ve been holding back on commenting….reality has been so overwhelming and I feel as if, for the first time since possibly the War of 1812, that the West is slowly, inexorably being pulled into another war, this time on home … Continue reading . . . → Read More: Left Over: There’s Somethin’ Happening Here…

Parchment in the Fire: Growing Labor Protests Paralyzing France

Filed under: Europe, Eurozone crisis, Uncategorized Tagged: Austerity, France, General Strike, labour market reforms . . . → Read More: Parchment in the Fire: Growing Labor Protests Paralyzing France

Alberta Politics: It’s time for a national postal bank in both Canada and the United States

PHOTOS: The little Post Office in downtown St. Albert, where your blogger lives, which Canada Post is anxious to close as soon as possible. Below: The U.S. Post Office in Fallon, Montana, the Canadian Post Office in Dewberry, Alberta (villageofdewberry… . . . → Read More: Alberta Politics: It’s time for a national postal bank in both Canada and the United States

Alberta Politics: Questions without answers: Why are our U.S. allies so ambivalent about ISIS, and what does it mean for Canada?

PHOTOS: U.S. State Department spokesperson Mark Toner. (Screen grab from C-SPAN.) Below: Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, Conservative interim Opposition Leader Rona Ambrose and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. For all we know, Syrian President Bashar a… . . . → Read More: Alberta Politics: Questions without answers: Why are our U.S. allies so ambivalent about ISIS, and what does it mean for Canada?

Things Are Good: France Installing 100km of Solar Roads

France has announced that they are going to try a mass installation of solar-panelled roads to provide electricity. It’s an attempt to see if they technology can be scalable and durable enough to survive under so much wear and tear. These solar roads aren’t made by the company that turned to crowdfunding a few years […]

The post France Installing 100km of Solar Roads appeared first on Things Are Good.

. . . → Read More: Things Are Good: France Installing 100km of Solar Roads

Parchment in the Fire: French labour code reform: towards more precarious employment? – Equal Times

On 4 November 2015, France’s labour minister, Myriam El Khomri, launched a reform of the labour law. The two main objectives are to revise the entire labour code and to give company-level agreements a central role, against a background marked by unemployment reaching 10.6 per cent of the active population in November 2015. In absolute… More French labour code reform: towards more precarious employment? – Equal Times . . . → Read More: Parchment in the Fire: French labour code reform: towards more precarious employment? – Equal Times

Parchment in the Fire: Trade unions take on the extreme right in northern France

It is Saturday afternoon and the Christmas market in Hénin-Beaumont is deserted. A light rain is falling on the town, adding a layer of sadness to the place. In front of the town hall, on Place Jean-Jaurès, the PCF (French Communist Party) office has closed its shutters. A small notice pasted to the door urges… More Trade unions take on the extreme right in northern France . . . → Read More: Parchment in the Fire: Trade unions take on the extreme right in northern France

Alberta Politics: Reassessing NATO: Canada shouldn’t let itself be ‘Article Fived’ into a war by Turkey’s Islamist president

PHOTOS: A bunch of NATO political bureaucrats try to look busy in this file photo. Recognize anyone? Below: Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Russian President Vladimir Putin and NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg. Does it benefit Canada in … . . . → Read More: Alberta Politics: Reassessing NATO: Canada shouldn’t let itself be ‘Article Fived’ into a war by Turkey’s Islamist president

Alberta Politics: Brad Wall’s call to block refugees from Syria is just more of the same old conservative wedge politics

PHOTOS: Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall (CBC Photo). Below: Alberta Premier Rachel Notley, Texas Gov. Gregg Abbott and B.C. Premier Christy Clark. Bottom: Russian President Vladimir Putin, who is either demonized or ignored by Western mainstream media. In light of the inevitably angry and emotional response to the Paris terror attacks on Friday the 13th, for […]

The post Brad Wall’s call to block refugees from Syria is just more of the same old conservative wedge politics appeared first on Alberta Politics.

The Canadian Progressive: John Oliver Rants Against Paris Attackers: “Fuck These Assholes”

Comedian John Oliver has the perfect response to the Islamic State-linked terrorists who carried out last Friday’s barbaric attack in Paris, France, killing 129 people.

The post John Oliver Rants Against Paris Attackers: “Fuck These Assholes” appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

Bill Longstaff: Paris—the blowback of imperialism

U.S. President Barack Obama has referred to the atrocities in Paris as attacks “on all of humanity.” He is wrong, of course. The attacks were specifically directed at France, an ex-imperialist European nation that has a long history of colonizing, oppressing and exploiting the Muslim peoples of North Africa and the Middle East, and that continues to interfere in their affairs to this very day.

The Disaffected Lib: Could Syria Become the 21st Century Sarajevo?

There were plenty of proxy wars during the Cold War only back then the principals had enough sense to avoid direct clashes. That was then, this is Syria where today we find the rival superpowers circling each other inside the same phone booth.

You could search the world over and never find one place where so many players are gathered as Syria.

First up is the Alawite government of Bashar Assad.

Then there’s the original rebels, Syrian Sunnis.

Then we have the Sunni Islamists – the ‘moderate’ al Nusra, an affiliate of al Qaeda, and the far nastier Islamic State, (Read more…)

Alberta Politics: What’s next? F-35 boondoggle to land on the deck of a Canadian Mistral carrier?

PHOTOS: The F-35, possibly the worst military aircraft ever made, dollar for dollar or pound for pound, photographed to make it look less like a brick. A hovering version of the same plane. A not-quite-finished Mistral-class helicopter carrier. SANTA FE, N.M. I suppose a hotel in the desert, just down the block from the address […]

The post What’s next? F-35 boondoggle to land on the deck of a Canadian Mistral carrier? appeared first on Alberta Politics.

The Disaffected Lib: Merkel’s Toxic Tonic

Has German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s subjugation of Greece inadvertently poisoned European unity?  That’s how a pro-EU lobby group sees it.

“The last few weeks have laid totally bare the European Union’s brand of authoritarian dogma,” UKIP leader Nigel Farage wrote in the London Telegraph.

“More and more people are waking up to the dangers of this supranational beast sweeping aside national sovereignty completely. Many who had continued to believe until very recently that the EU was compassionate and forward-looking are beginning to realise just how backwards the whole project is.”

Pablo Echenique, a deputy from Spain’s radical left Podemos, (Read more…)

Alberta Politics: Will Canadian troops in Ukraine have to train radical Islamist volunteers said to be tied to ISIS?

PHOTOS: Defence Minister Jason Kenney explains who Canadian troops will train in Ukraine last fall. Below: Prime Minister Stephen Harper in Ukraine in 2010. Photos are from the CBC and the Prime Minister’s Office’s Flickr account. It’s been evident for several months now Ukraine has a problem with neo-Nazis, in particular battalions of “volunteers” who […]

The post Will Canadian troops in Ukraine have to train radical Islamist volunteers said to be tied to ISIS? appeared first on Alberta Politics.

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: France Has Law To Put Solar or Plants on Rooftops

I was impressed to learn that France had made new commercial buildings do this. I’ve felt badly that new buildings going up all over the University of Regina campus since I started paying attention to it in 1998, haven’t put a single solar panel up on them. There’s a building on Research Dr. with a round skylight that looks like a CD player, that would have been a perfect spot for some solar panels. At least the RIC building in 2006 had a partial green roof built onto its shady side.

Things Are Good: In France New Buildings Need Green Roofs

Green roofs or solar panels are now required on all new commercial buildings in the country of France. This is great because now buildings can have either a zero energy impact or contribute to their local environment.

Rooftops on new buildings built in commercial zones in France must either be partially covered in plants or solar panels, under a law approved on Thursday.

Green roofs have an isolating effect, helping reduce the amount of energy needed to heat a building in winter and cool it in summer

Read more.

Bill Longstaff: French hold most favourable views of Jews and Muslims

How the French view their minority populations after the violent events earlier this month will probably take a while to sort out. But a poll conducted last year suggested they were about the most tolerant in Europe.

Eighty-nine per cent of French men and women hold a favourable view of Jews and 72 per cent hold a favourable view of Muslims. The British were second, with 83 per cent and 64 per

Dead Wild Roses: The DWR Sunday Religious Disservice – MisterDeity responds to the Pope.

Sometimes the Pope makes a error when speaking. We all do. But this was not one of those times and Mr.Deity unabashedly and quite colourfully rips into the perfidious pontiff over his comments about the recent murders in France.

*Strong Language Warning*

I’m not sure what the pope was thinking on this one, but I think rightly he deserves the chastisement Mr.D brings to the table.

Filed under: Religion Tagged: France, Mr.Deity, Pope Francis

Politics and its Discontents: What’s Next? Thoughtcrime?

Yesterday I wrote a brief post on how the French government, despite massive outpourings in defense of free speech in the wake of the Charlie Hebdo massacre, is moving to severely curtail that right for those with whom it disagrees.

The Toronto Star has an editorial strongly condemning the French action, using the following examples to bolster its expression of odium: …the French authorities have arrested comic Dieudonné M’bala M’bala and more than 50 others including several minors for voicing unpopular views of their own.

Not accused of any acts of terrorism, they ran afoul of France’s tough laws against (Read more…)

Politics and its Discontents: Have The Terrorists Already Won?

Much press has been devoted to the aftermath of the cowardly massacre at Charlie Hebdo; strong displays of solidarity both in defence of freedom of expression and disdain for the jihadists’ efforts to squelch it, have been widespread. But despite these demonstrations, one can legitimately ask if the terrorists have already achieved victory.

I offer but one example here of the egregious irony/hypocrisy of a state-sanctioned suppression of the very right that so many are so staunchly defending against attack.

Associated Press journalists Lori Hinnant and Angela Charlton report the following: In a sign that French judicial authorities were (Read more…)

Parchment in the Fire: The Eurozone’s ‘New Austerity Model’ » CounterPunch: Tells the Facts, Names the Names

The Eurozone’s ‘New Austerity Model’ » CounterPunch: Tells the Facts, Names the Names.

by Jack Rasmus

In the coming weeks and months, as the Eurozone economy weakens still further, it is likely that debates and splits within the Eurozone capitalist elites will continue to intensify.

The Eurozone economy has never really recovered from the 2008-09 financial crash and recession. Austerity policies—that played a major role in preventing a sustained Eurozone economic recovery for the past five years—are now evolving into still newer forms.

Events in the recent past in Spain, measures approved in just the past week by the newly (Read more…)

Parchment in the Fire: Front National wins seats in French senate for first time | World news | The Guardian

Front National wins seats in French senate for first time | World news | The Guardian.

Marine le Pen hailed her party’s success as ‘an absolutely historic victory’ and a ‘breath of fresh air in a rather sleepy chamber’. Photograph: Phililppe Huguen/AFP/Getty Images

The far-right Front National (FN) scored a historic victory in elections to the French senate on Sunday, winning its first ever seats in the upper chamber as the ruling Socialists and their leftwing allies lost their majority to rightwing parties.

The shock victory of Stéphane Ravier from Marseilles and David Rachline from Fréjus confirmed the party’s political (Read more…)