Assorted content to end your week.
- Frank Graves writes that we’re seeing the end of progress for all but the wealthiest few – and that we all stand to lose out if we come to believe that progress for the rest of us is impossible: There is a virtual consensus that a growing and optimistic middle class is a precondition for societal health and economic prosperity. This consensus position reflects the historical record of when nations succeed. Yet if this consensus is correct, we note with alarm that almost nobody thinks that these conditions are in place in Canada. (Read more…)
Hundreds of First Nation leaders, environmentalists, land owners, musicians, authors, actors and artists signed letter urging Obama to veto Keystone XL pipeline.
The post Group Letter Urged Obama To Veto Keystone XL Pipeline Bill appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.
This fills in the blanks on many levels. Some folks will be tad upset with the ‘Reality Check’ but it is time to defrag and tune up grass roots response to criminal corporate destruction of the environment.
Naomi Klein Takes on the Big Greens
In Jonathan Franzen’s bestselling novel Freedom, the main character accepts a dream job from a billionaire philanthropist. He is charged with partnering with coal companies in West Virginia to set aside 100 square miles as pristine habitat for the Cerulean Warbler, an endangered songbird that is further threatened by coal mining operations. (Read more…)
U.S. President Barack Obama has threatened to veto a Congressional bill that would force the approval of TransCanada’s Keystone XL tar sands pipeline.
The post President Obama Threatens To Veto Congress’ Keystone XL Pipeline Bill appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.
Assorted content for your Friday reading.
- Mariana Mazzucato discusses how inequality and financialization have teamed up to create an economy with little upside and serious risks for most people: (W)hat should we do in 2015? Financial reform–aimed at bringing finance and the real economy together again–must thus critically first study the facts, not the myths, in the real economy. Periods of longest stable growth in most economies [occur] when medium to large firms have invested their profits in R&D and human capital. What is needed today is long-term committed finance, in the form of public banks (such as German’s (Read more…)
Miscellaneous material to start your week.
- Ryan Meili examines why Craig Alexander of the TD Bank is calling for a move toward greater income equality in Canada: The OECD reports that income inequality is at the highest level in 30 years, and that economic growth has been slowed by as much as 10 per cent in some countries as a result. A 2014 IMF study showed that redistributive policies through tax and transfers not only do no harm to the economy, but can improve performance in the long-term. In fact, it appears that public investments in child care and (Read more…)
Miscellaneous material for your mid-week reading.
- Polly Toynbee writes about the unfortunate agreement among the UK’s major parties not to talk about the real effects of gratuitous cuts for fear that the public won’t abide honesty in politics. And George Monbiot discusses how the UK’s tax system favours rents over productive uses of capital: The Westminster government claims to champion an entrepreneurial society of wealth creators and hardworking families, but the real rewards and incentives are for rent. The power and majesty of the state protects the patrimonial class. A looped and windowed democratic cloak barely covers the corrupt old (Read more…)
I have another piece up at Ricochet: a review of Naomi Klein’s big book on climate change, This Changes Everything. It’s friendly but critical, looking at what the book’s themes of austerity, the local and extractivism mean for how we build politics against climate change. I’ve included it in full below…
Naomi Klein’s big book on climate change, This Changes Everything, is at once an extensive catalogue of climate change failures and a passionate defence of budding shoots of resistance. Much more than just an up-to-date account of where we are and how we got here, it is also a meditation on (Read more…)
From left: Chris Hedges, Naomi Klein, Brian Lehrer (moderator), Bill McKibben, Kshama Sawant
I was fortunate to attend the largest climate change march in history on September 21, 2014 in New York City. It was an incredible experience to see roughly 400,000 in the streets demanding urgent action on the climate crisis.
The night before the event, there was a great panel discussion featuring Naomi Klein (author of ‘This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. the Climate’), Bill McKibben (founder of 350.org), Chris Hedges (author and former New York Times correspondent), U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders, and Kshama Sawant (newly (Read more…)
Naomi Klein calls on Barack Obama to reject TransCanada’s proposed Keystone XL tar sands pipeline, urges “radical change to prevent catastrophic warming.”
The post Naomi Klein: Reject Keystone XL Pipeline, Radical Change Needed [VIDEO] appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.
This and that for your Sunday reading.
- Rob Nixon’s review of Naomi Klein’s This Changes Everything nicely sums up why the book – and the fundamental clash it documents between corporate profit-seeking and the health of people and our planet – should be at the centre of our political conversation: (N)eoliberalism — promotes a high-consumption, carbon-hungry system. Neoliberalism has encouraged mega-mergers, trade agreements hostile to environmental and labor regulations, and global hypermobility, enabling a corporation like Exxon to make, as McKibben has noted, “more money last year than any company in the history of money.” Their outsize power (Read more…)
In an event organized this month by UK-based COIN (Climate Outreach and Information Network), Naomi Klein speaks about the ideas articulated in her new book, This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs The Climate. Klein is introduced by fashion designer and climate activist Dame Vivienne Westwood and begins speaking at the 15 minute mark of the video. […]
Guardian enviro-scribe George Monbiot responds to the report that Earth has suffered the loss of fully half of its wild life over the past forty years by asking why man is at war with the living world.
If the news that in the past 40 years the world has lost over 50% of its vertebrate wildlife (mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and fish) fails to tell us that there is something wrong with the way we live, it’s hard to imagine what could. Who believes that a social and economic system which has this effect is a healthy one? Who, contemplating (Read more…)
The tide is turning as citizens stand up and speak out on a global scale. 360 thousand hit the streets in New York City and thousands more protested in cities throughout the world.
At the same time our ignorant neo con PM Steve Harper, the ‘Fearless Defender of the Overdogs’, is in complete denial and has not even bothered to show up at the UN Summit on Climate change in New York.
What must people think of Canada now?
Naomi Klein. Photo by justine warrington (CC BY 2.0)
By Alexander Reed Kelly
Every week the Truthdig editorial staff (Read more…)
This and that to end your weekend.
- Paul Krugman notes that a concerted effort to combat climate change could be as beneficial economically as it is important for the future of our planet: Where is the new optimism about climate change and growth coming from? It has long been clear that a well-thought-out strategy of emissions control, in particular one that puts a price on carbon via either an emissions tax or a cap-and-trade scheme, would cost much less than the usual suspects want you to think. But the economics of climate protection look even better now than they (Read more…)
This will be a weekend of global climate activism. Marches and forums are planned around the world, with the largest set for New York City: the three-day Climate Convergence and the People’s Climate March on Sunday expected to draw hundreds of thousands. I spoke with Arun Gupta, co-founder of The Indypendent, author and journalist living in NYC for a critical but constructive take on the weekend’s events and climate politics more generally.
As part of the Convergence, Arun is organizing a panel titled “Apocalypse How? Climate Change, the Political-Economy of Energy, and Reigniting the Radical (Read more…)
Assorted content for your Sunday reading.
- Naomi Klein discusses how entrenched corporate control through trade and investment agreements will prevent us from making any real progress against climate change. And Cory Doctorow weighs in on the Cons’ FIPA sellout of Canadian sovereignty, while highlighting the NDP’s petition to stop it.
- Meanwhile, Les Whittington writes that CETA will severely limit Canada’s ability to regulate banks – which, as Barry Ritholz observes, only sets us up for predictable financial abuse which will never be properly investigated or punished: Political access and lobbying go part way toward explaining the absence (Read more…)
In the run-up to the release of her new book, “This Changes Everything,” Naomi Klein has come clean. For far too long she was in what she describes as a “soft denial” about climate change. Does this sound familiar?
“A great many of us engage in this kind of denial. We look for a split second and then we look away. Or maybe we really do look, but then we forget. We engage in this odd form of on-again-off-again ecological amnesia for perfectly rational reasons. We deny because we fear that letting in the full reality of this (Read more…)
This and that for your Thursday reading.
- Ethan Corey and Jessica Corbett offer five lessons for progressives from Naomi Klein’s forthcoming This Changes Everything.
- Following up on this post, Andrew Jackson fact-checks the Fraser Institute on its hostility toward the CPP. And the Winnipeg Free Press goes further in challenging the motives behind the “study”: Since the authors started out believing that the Canada Pension Plan and its investment arm are a “self-serving bureaucracy,” it was predictable that they would find something objectionable about CPP administration. The surprise in the study is that the authors produced no (Read more…)
This and that for your Tuesday reading.
- Duncan Cameron writes that Canada needs a new political direction rather than just a new government – and offers some worthwhile suggestions as to what that might include: The inter-generational bargain needs to be renewed. Today’s workers pay for their past studies and future retirement. Investing in youth and providing for retirement has social benefits and requires collective support. Much can done through a serious progressive income tax, but notable additional sources of revenue for student grants and other social spending exist. A financial transaction tax for instance could raise an estimated (Read more…)