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The Progressive Economics Forum: G20 meeting of world finance ministers too little too late

Posted earlier as an opinion piece for CBC. See original post here (this post slightly modified from original)

By Louis-Philippe Rochon

Follow him on Twitter @Lprochon


Much was at stake earlier this week when finance ministers from G20 countries met in Istanbul to discuss Greece and the state of the world economy in light of recent downgrades in world growth expectations. But did they agree to too little, too late?

There is now no doubt that the world economy, not just Canada’s, has slow downed considerably and will slow down even more unless appropriate policies are adopted soon. To date, (Read more…)

The Disaffected Lib: The Humiliation of Tony Abbott

Hosting a G20 summit is supposed to be prestigious.  You get the leaders of the world’s largest economies to come to your country, to gather in your town, to discuss the great problems of the day.   As host you even get to set the agenda for the summit.  You get to steer all those big wigs and they’re supposed to follow your lead.

Now, following the G20 pow wow in Australia, we may have come away with the “Brisbane Rule.”  This applies in the situation where the host is a total dick. It operates to override the host’s (Read more…)

The Disaffected Lib: Harper Chasing Votes Down Under

His supposedly blunt message to Vladimir Putin reveals how Steve Harper really knows how to work a room when there’s an election in the offing.

Walking up to Putin at the G20 summit, Harper’s aides claim he said this:  ”Well I guess I’ll share your hand but I only have one thing to say to you: you need to get out of Ukraine.”

Missing, naturally, was the “or else” part because for Harper which his defunded military in decline there is no “or else.”  Talk, however, is cheap except as it relates to vote-getting, in this case (Read more…)

The Disaffected Lib: Dear Tony, You Can Kiss Our…

A group of Australians gathered on Bondi Beach to bury their heads in the sand in protest of their prime minister’s fossil fuel fetish.

More than 400 protesters stuck their heads in the sand on Australia’s Bondi Beach on Thursday, mocking the government’s reluctance to put climate change on the agenda of a G20 summit this weekend. Prime minister Tony Abbott’s perceived failure to address climate change is all the more galling in the wake of an agreement between the United States and China on Wednesday to limit their carbon emissions, they said.“Obama’s on board, Xi Jinping’s on (Read more…)

Cowichan Conversations: Toronto G20, 4 years later: 18 disturbing facts all Canadians should know

Richard Hughes-Political Blogger


Let us remember that while the US cops are often out of control that it can happen here in sweet old Canada, and has happened many times.

The G20 is a reminder that many would like to sweep under the rug and leave it there.

The Cracked Crystal Ball II: Nasty, Just Plain Nasty

It’s not like it comes as a big surprise that the Harper Government is nasty.  But the extent of their vileness continues expand.

First, the Harper Government seems to have decided to shut down basic literacy programs across Canada.  The claims of the Harperites on this matter are the usual “we don’t believe these programs are useful in their current form”.  Basic literacy is always useful, unless you’re a Conservative and you like the idea of having an underclass of people who aren’t in a position to think about what’s happening to them because they’re struggling just to get by (Read more…)

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: #cdnpoli Spying On You

The G20 scandal just got broader. Besides Canadian police massively violating protester’s rights, the NSA appears to have been assisted by CSEC to illegally spy on Canadians in Ontario for the G20.

Canada Defence Min declines to answer question from NDP about CBC report on NSA/G20 surveillance— Paul Vieira (@paulvieira) November 28, 2013

Nicholson won't comment on foreign intelligence activities. He says CSEC prohibited from spying on Cdns.. won't say if they did or didn't.— Michael Den Tandt (@mdentandt) November 28, 2013

Remember the Fake Lake? Maybe it was a giant cover for an underwater spy base? No, of (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: Friday Morning Links

Assorted content to end your week.

- Tom Bergin reports on a predictable corporate attack on the very idea of government sovereignty – as tax evaders are insisting that their own demand for “certainty” in the availability of tax havens should trump the ability of tax authorities to assess where revenue should be taxed: The companies said the existing practice of recognizing inter-company transactions gave business greater certainty and encouraged trade by helping ensure the same profits were not taxed more than once.

Business groups were also cool on a proposal tabled in June by the Group of Eight (G8) (Read more…)

Alex's Blog: Austeria

Mad scientist selling his utopian project to the master of Metropolis (Fritz Lang, 1927)

“Austeria”. An informal talk to OMSSA’s 2013 Learning Symposium, held in Ottawa, Ontario from June 16 to 19, 2013.

Alex's Blog: Austeria

Informal talk to OMSSA’s 2013 Learning Symposium, held in Ottawa, Ontario from June 16 to 19, 2013.

Accidental Deliberations: Tuesday Morning Links

This and that for your Tuesday reading.

- Duncan Cameron discusses how the G20 is dancing around the problem of corporate tax evasion. The Economist issues a call to action against offshoring. And David Atkins points out what’s more likely needed to deal with a global problem which can be exacerbated by just a few defectors: What is needed are global treaties with negative enforcement mechanisms, including but not limited to potential tariffs and sanctions, for nations that refuse to put rules in place to curb corporate theft and malfeasance. Nations that allow corporations conduct the worst forms of corporate (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: Sunday Morning Links

This and that for your Sunday reading.

- Justin Ling writes that the Cons’ aversion to accountability isn’t limited to their own government, as they’re one of the few holdouts against transparency in resource-sector reporting of payments to governments abroad.

- Meanwhile, Stuart Trew discusses an international citizens’ initiative to keep the Trans-Pacific Partnership from imposing harmful copyright rules: A coalition website, launched this week as a 17th round of TPP negotiations gets underway in Lima, Peru, calls on TPP negotiators to “reject copyright proposals that restrict open Internet, access to knowledge, economic opportunity and fundamental rights.” The website (Read more…)

The Canadian Progressive: Of Toronto G20 protests and “abuse orchestrated by fascist states”

by Obert Madondo | The Canadian Progressive, Jan 15, 2013: Ontario Superior Court Justice Harriet Sachs says police behaviour during the Toronto G20 protests had “the eerie overtones of the worst sort of abuse orchestrated by fascist states.” She passed the harsh verdict while ruling on the case of Eva Marie Botten, an activist whose Charter READ MORE

Canadian ProgressiveCanadian Progressive: PowerShift 2012 Concludes With Massive March Against Harper Gvt’s $1.4bn “Polluter Handouts”

The PowerShift 2012 Conference concluded with a raucous “Trick or Treat” march through downtown Ottawa by over 800 conference attendees and local activists. The 4-day conference sought to push the Harper Government to act to stop climate change and social injustice in Canada. And to stop annual handouts of $1.4 billion in Canadian taxpayer money to the “richest, dirtiest corporations in the world.” The conference kicked off last Friday [...]

Impolitical: You go, Paul Martin

Yeah they did: “Tories made a ‘major mistake’ in their approach to the euro crisis, Paul Martin says.” “The major mistake that the government has made is the way that it’s characterized this,” Mr. Martin said.

“The role of the G20 is to strengthen the financial institutions and the other global institutions that exist. And so, for Canada to turn its back on the IMF when the IMF is saying ‘we want more money, not simply for Europe, we want to be able to deal with the huge imbalances that exist around the world,’ I think that was a

. . . → Read More: Impolitical: You go, Paul Martin

Canadian Trends: There is no Canada, only Zuul

Perspective is everything. When a Canadian citizen looks up at their government, they see a democratic institution being stolen from them through deceptive practices. When an international corporation looks down at a government, they see a tool for the implementation of policy. To understand the multi-facted implementation of policy and issues of debate you must view from the appropriate angle.

Democracy, lately, is always on the defensive. It’s bill after bill after bill that no one really wants. Even CISPA drew the ire of conservative supporters. So where are these bills coming from? Further, and perhaps even more importantly, where

. . . → Read More: Canadian Trends: There is no Canada, only Zuul

Impolitical: The world ponies up to the IMF

The IMF released this table at the end of the G20 yesterday showing pledges received over the past few months by countries around the world to increase IMF resources:

That’s quite a list. 37 countries including 15 of the G20 have now contributed to the IMF fund seeking to build resources at a time of great Eurozone financial uncertainty. A bunch of nations made their contributions at this G20 meeting. As we know, Canada has not contributed and that position was not widely followed among the leading nations of the world.

We also know that the Harper government has made

. . . → Read More: Impolitical: The world ponies up to the IMF

Canadian Trends: One big idea: Banking Oversight? Please.

Emerging from their resort world leaders have come up with one idea that just might work. Banking Oversight. No seriously, this is what they are spending money coming up with. Click the link, see for yourself. Of course their brand of banking oversight is new. It’s nothing like the banking oversight already in place which was never enforced, no no.. this is all new. Unified banking oversight, genius!

This article is filled with luscious quotes, so lets begin: European leaders are considering a makeover of their banking sector that would prevent struggling financial institutions from causing more problems for their

. . . → Read More: Canadian Trends: One big idea: Banking Oversight? Please.

Canadian Trends: Expensive resorts and lavish dinners, austerity is in the air

The G20 leaders continue to excel at making a credible case for austerity. Hunkered down in a Mexican luxury resort the reality of the world most people live in is no where to be found near them. Between lavish meals economic talk erupts, lots of talk which these leaders insist will one day translate in to a plan to actually address the world problems. Of course this plan will be served up right after dinner. U.S. President Barack Obama will discuss the euro zone crisis and the state of the global economy with European leaders after the G20 dinner

. . . → Read More: Canadian Trends: Expensive resorts and lavish dinners, austerity is in the air

Accidental Deliberations: Tuesday Morning Links

This and that for your Tuesday reading.

- Plenty of commentators are rightly speaking out against the Cons’ anti-democratic omnibus bill, including Tim Harper and the Star-Phoenix and Vancouver Sun editorial boards. And even John Ivison can’t muster much more than “but the Libs did it too!” in defence of the Harper government’s abuses.

- Rachel Mendleson reports on new research confirming the connection between inequality and worse health outcomes.

- Nobody should be particularly surprised that the Cons listed PR as one of the main reasons to suppress dissent when holding G8 and G20 meetings. But is “embarrassment”

. . . → Read More: Accidental Deliberations: Tuesday Morning Links

Accidental Deliberations: Sunday Afternoon Links

Assorted content for your long weekend reading.

- While some of us may recognize that there’s little reason to lend much credence to the talking points spewed out by any Con spokespuppet, others have tried to give the benefit of the doubt as long as possible. But Lawrence Martin notes that even by those standards, John Baird is losing any pretense of credibility. And Susan Delacourt notes that the Cons – while never known for maturity or reasonableness – are getting more childish by the day.

- Doug Saunders offers a look at what a Canada of 100 million people

. . . → Read More: Accidental Deliberations: Sunday Afternoon Links

Impolitical: The #G20 Office of the Independent Police Review Director report

The National’s report above is a good overview of yesterday’s release of the G20 report by Ontario’s Office of the Independent Police Review. You can read it here and while it is lengthy, the executive summary and ensuing recommendations are not a very taxing read. It is a tale of incompetence in so many respects.

Here are some of the excerpts that stood out from the report.

There are the night shift Incident Commander’s comments on the Saturday night of the weekend: “The night shift Incident Commander said Deputy Police Chief Warr told him that he wanted him to take

. . . → Read More: Impolitical: The #G20 Office of the Independent Police Review Director report

Art Threat: Watching them watching us – Monday Music Pick: Our Protection by LAL

The deeply political, community-committed, and talented LAL from Toronto, sing about surveillance with images from the Toronto G20 manifestations from two summers ago. LAL was formed in 1998 and is comprised of poet, singer & Bengali-rooted Rosina Kazi, producer, sound designer, philosopher, aphorismist and Barbados-born king of chill, Murr, and last but not least bassist Uganda-born Ian de Souza. Video by Wandering Eye Productions.

Impolitical: Flaherty’s international diplomacy

Remember the G20 finance ministers meeting recently where Flaherty made a splash? Canada was one of the few hold-outs in the G20 meetings last month that dissented against the International Monetary Fund’s drive to create a $400-billion fund to backstop eurozone debt, and refused to pay its portion when the fund was approved.

The U.S. also did not contribute, but many suggested the decision was taken because President Barack Obama could not succeed in getting approval from a Republican-dominated Congress in an election year.

Canada’s decision raised eyebrows in international circles, however, and led to suggestions Canada had isolated

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A Conspiracy Theory

While it is good to finally know the identity of the coward  whose infamous boot is featured prominently in this iconic photo from the #G20 police riot in Toronto, it isn’t even a good start. The ones we need in front of a judge are those who gave the orders to attack innocent civilians.

One thing that caught my eye in the report in this mornings Star was that Const. Oliver Simpson apart from being one of the officers that allegedly assaulted Adam Nobody was that he was one of the cops who were ,Ahem, disciplined for removing his name

. . . → Read More: A Conspiracy Theory