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Things Are Good: Vermont Stops Their War on Drugs, Will Help People Instead

The war on drugs is a backwards, destructive, and anti-human campaign that has destroyed lives. It was launched by Nixon and since then it the ‘war’ has negatively impacted everything it touches from people’s lives to the global economy.

The USA tries to enforce it’s inflexible approach around the world, yet at home many states are realizing that it’s a foolish approach. Vermont has now openly backed out of the ignorant ‘battle’ against drugs and is taking a more educated approach: helping people who are addicted rather than punishing them.

Vermont has passed a battery of reforms that have turned (Read more…)

Trashy's World: Stuff I didn’t know before…

Like… New Brunswick is a province that is stuck in the Dark Ages when it comes to access to abortions. An abortion must be be deemed “medically neccesary” before it can be performed. And… that Beelzebub is alive and active in Fredericton. As for the first new piece of knowledge… I learned this upon hearing […]

Politics, Re-Spun: The Occupy Movement Has Changed the Narrative, But We’re Not Done

Recently, with the WEF spending the last few years acknowledging global income inequality is a problem, I’ve declared a kind of victory for the Occupy Movement: getting the lexicon on the 1% and inequality on the tongues of the sly gazillionaires who rule the world, and into mass consumption.

Now we see that the CEO of Goldman Sachs, one of the biggest cancers of neoliberal capitalism and a prime mover of the 2008 crash, has admitted that income inequality is a problem and a destabilizer. Sadly, though not surprisingly, in this interview he also trotted out typical neoliberal “realities” (Read more…)

Things Are Good: Being Intellectually Stimulated Can Delay Dementia

More and more studies seem to be coming out that all conclude that keeping your mind active can be helpful to all sorts of health issues. Speaking more than one language and certainly help and so can just keeping your mind intellectually stimulated through various tasks:

Examples of activities the researchers considered cognitively stimulating (if performed at least three times per week) included reading books and magazines, playing games and music, and participating in arts and crafts.

All participants then underwent a battery of neuropsychological tests designed to measure a variety of cognitive skills, including executive functioning, language, and memory.

(Read more…)

Politics, Re-Spun: How the Federal NDP Plans to Alienate Eco-Voters

Mulcair wants to out-Liberal the Liberals led by the charismatic son of a charismatic Liberal prime minister.

He will fail:

“I think what Canadians want are people who are realists, who understand for example the importance of our extractive industries and the creation of jobs but they also want to have a government that’s actually going to enforce rules of sustainable development like polluter pay. We can do both.”

via NDP signals move to mushy middle | Globalnews.ca.

They should do neither!

This is stunning for Mulcair to trot out.

Not only is he ignoring that green energy (Read more…)

Things Are Good: France Pays People to Cycle to Work

France is experimenting with new way to subsidize transportation by getting more people to bicycle to work. Traffic in Paris is particularly awful and with ongoing population growth and car-focused infrastructure the transportation problems are only going to increase. France is hoping that getting people to ride bicycles will stymie the growth of transportation issues.

French Transport Minister Frederic Cuvillier, noting that commuting using public transport and cars is already subsidized, said that if results of the test are promising, a second experiment on a larger scale will be done.

The ministry hopes that the bike-to-work incentive scheme will boost (Read more…)

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: Take a Narrow Health Site Survey

This sort of survey isn’t going to make the best website possible for our country.

I found the survey easy to take, but the results will be skewed toward the menu options listed, instead of answering the question ask which was “where would I look for X”, which is “Google”. Making sure existing links continue to work forever, would be the best way to ensure material is locatable by the public.

Things Are Good: Doctors Say Healthy People Come From Good Urban Design

A new report written by a handful of doctors titled Improving Health Care by Design concludes that in order to have a healthy populace we need cities designed for health. There is nothing startling in the report but it does provide one more reference and tool for people to use inspire positive change in their own communities.

The results: if we want healthy people, we need to build healthy communities. This means, the doctors suggest, that our communities need to made more conducive to walking, cycling, and public transit. The report concludes with calls for “major changes” in community design (Read more…)

Joe Fantauzzi: The Ontario Election, Austerity and The Social Commons

In his Second Treatise of Government, John Locke argued that land, when Common, was fallow and unproductive. Mixing one’s labour with the land, such as growing grain or picking an apple, however, privatized the land and allowed access to the fruits of the labour.[1] Eventually these private, “productive” lands were enclosed, most often by fences. In a […]

Joe Fantauzzi: The Ontario Election, Austerity and The Social Commons

In his Second Treatise of Government, John Locke argued that land, when Common, was fallow and unproductive. Mixing one’s labour with the land, such as growing grain or picking an apple, however, privatized the land and allowed access to the fruits of the labour.[1] Eventually these private, “productive” lands were enclosed, most often by fences. In a […]

Joe Fantauzzi: Supervised Injection In Toronto: The Canadian Taboo

Supervised injection is an emerging school of urban policy. At Illuminated By Street Lamps, I have posted a paper I wrote on the subject, which focuses on Toronto, and points the finger at the Conservative federal government and police for halting the discussion about this harm reduction technique. What is most concerning is that the […]

Joe Fantauzzi: Supervised Injection In Toronto: The Canadian Taboo

Supervised injection is an emerging school of urban policy. At Illuminated By Street Lamps, I have posted a paper I wrote on the subject, which focuses on Toronto, and points the finger at the Conservative federal government and police for halting the discussion about this harm reduction technique. What is most concerning is that the […]

The Canadian Progressive: Fracking: Council of Canadians’ ‘Frack Corp’ Fracks Parliament Hill

by: Council of Canadians | Press Release | May 1, 2014

‘Frack Corp’ fracked Parliament Hill this morning using a 14-foot fracking rig spilling fracking wastewater in the process. The Council of Canadians, the organization behind the action, said it was to highlight the grave risks associated with fracking such as well leaks and wastewater spills.

“We organized this action to drive home to Members of Parliament why Canadian and Indigenous communities are calling for a ban on fracking,” says Emma Lui, water campaigner with the Council of Canadians. “Affected communities have been sounding the alarm on fracking for years because (Read more…)

Politics, Re-Spun: Will Today Be the Day You Die at Work?

 

 

Do you feel lucky, punk? Well… do you?

Every day, four Canadians will die as a result of a workplace accident, injury or industrial disease. If you make it home from work today, you are one of the lucky ones.

Statistically speaking, 1000 Canadian workers die annually as a result of workplace fatalities. This number is unacceptably high, despite Canada having some of the best health and safety laws in the world.

Employers continue to fail to ensure:

That their workers are safe on the job-site, with the right tools for the right job in the right place; (Read more…)

The Canadian Progressive: New study reveals best and worst cities to be a woman in Canada

by: Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives | Press Release | April 23, 2014

OTTAWA—A new study released today by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA) reveals the best and worst cities to be a woman in Canada. According to the study, Québec City is the best city to be a woman and Edmonton is the worst.

The study, by Kate McInturff, a Senior Researcher at the CCPA, ranks Canada’s 20 largest metropolitan areas based on a comparison of how men and women are faring in five areas: economic security, leadership, health, personal security, and education.

“Canada has made great (Read more…)

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: What do we know about Bell’s Palsy?

Bell’s Palsy is one of those rare ailments, and one that annoys more than threatens, but can be difficult and socially awkward for sufferers. It’s also one that still baffles researchers as to its cause. And also for an effective treatment. According to facialpalsy.org, The name ‘Bell’s palsy’ comes from 19th-century Scottish anatomist and surgeon […]

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: Canadian Police and Suicide Hotlines Violating Privacy

It’s mind boggling that Canadian police would think it’s justified in sharing mental health information with Homeland Insecurity in order to help the USA discriminate against people with mental illness.

What in the heck made them think it’s okay? Are they crazy?

People need to trust that they can reach out to a Suicide Hotline without fear of future reprisals. Canadian police have seriously damaged this expectation, and therefore are likely to have harmed people who’d have otherwise sought help. It would be hard to learn definitively if this abuse of authority has killed people, because the people we’d learn (Read more…)

Politics, Re-Spun: What Yoko Ono Knows About Fracking

Today we are fresh off the tar soaked heels of Enbridge’s lie and spin machine in Kitimat, leading to a vote AGAINST their toxic future.

In Kitimat, in a non-binding plebiscite, the people of Kitimat, but not the first peoples who live outside the town boundary, voted about 60-40 to kick out Enbridge.

They’re liars, don’t you know, making up a fake map of BC’s coast to pretend that oil tanker risks are lower than they are.

But it also turns out that Yoko Ono knows a thing or two about fracking and carbon energy.

And we also know (Read more…)

Melissa Fong: Xenophobics out to get Chinese-language Acupuncturists AKA Idiots volunteering to be discriminatory, racist idiots

  Acupuncture is a traditional Chinese medicine that Canadians have the PRIVILEGE of using as an alternative medicine. But some idiots who VOLUNTEER to see an acupuncturist wants to enforce […]

Things Are Good: Overwhelming Proof You Can’t Eat Enough Fruit and Vegetables

We all know that fruits and vegetables are good for us – but did you know that at any age you can reduce your risk of death by 42%? According to some fresh research eating seven portions of fruit or veggies per day can provide massive health benefits, indeed with every serving increase you can reduce your risk of death by 17%!

Compared to eating less than one portion of fruit and vegetables, the risk of death by any cause is reduced by 14% by eating one to three portions, 29% for three to five portions, 36% for five to (Read more…)

Things Are Good: Eat Less Meat and Save More Wildlife

Just reducing the amount of meat one has in their diet can have a positive impact on our food system, the planet, and wildlife. Take Extinction Off Your Plate is a campaign to get people not to be vegetarian, just to get people to reduce their meat intake. Producing meat in the modern farming system requires a lot of energy; indeed, Stanford warns about the dangers of global meat production.

It’s easy to be vegetarian, but remember – even decreasing your meat consumption can have positive impacts on the world and your health!

Meat production is one of the (Read more…)

Things Are Good: Smart People Trust Others

Oxford University researchers have concluded that the more intelligent a person is the more likely they are to trust other people. This is assumed to be the case because smarter people have a better at determining what sort of people they want to be around and self-select to be around people who can indeed be trusted. The study also points out the benefits of trust for society at large (including not intelligent people).

The Oxford researchers found, however, that the links between trust and health, and between trust and happiness, are not explained by intelligence. For example, individuals who trust (Read more…)

Politics, Re-Spun: Don’t Tolerate Ignorance About the Minimum Wage

Now, stop tolerating ignorance! And smile, TGIF.

Hello.

It’s Friday.

For many people it’s TGIF. But for many people who aren’t even teenagers, the work week isn’t ending today.

We often THINK minimum wage is for the new entries to the job market. Maybe it was one day. Maybe just for one day.

But today? If it isn’t a living wage, it’s exploitative.

And if it is just minimum wage, we are likely not too accurate on who is suffering with these low wages.

Let’s take a peek:

It is not the stereotypical pothead living in their parents’ basement.

(Read more…)

Things Are Good: New Research: Brains Do Heal Themselves

After a traumatic brain injury, it sometimes happens that the brain can repair itself, building new brain cells to replace damaged ones. But the repair doesn’t happen quickly enough to allow recovery from degenerative conditions like motor neuron disease (also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease or ALS). Siddharthan Chandran walks through some new techniques using special stem cells that could allow the damaged brain to rebuild faster.

Politics, Re-Spun: How the Conservative Government Dishonours the Military

So Canada is leaving its occupation of Afghanistan.

I never liked the mission. I never liked the context. I never liked the propaganda. I never liked the transformation of some kind of Canada into this occupying Canada.

162 killed and 2,179 wounded? But here’s the very very hard question. Who is the government NOT counting? They are the people the government is actively disowning, to the shame of all of us.

I’ll tell you who some of them are:

They are the human casualties of our new flashy militarism:

they are the veterans whose pensions have been replaced with lump (Read more…)