Prog Blog’s Flickr Photostream

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

Politics and its Discontents: Time To Reject Magical Thinking

Canadians, along with the West in general, have been fed a neoliberal diet of propaganda and policy for so long that far too many have succumbed to magical thinking, the belief that we can have it all with only minimal pain, the later in the form of lo… . . . → Read More: Politics and its Discontents: Time To Reject Magical Thinking

The Disaffected Lib: We’re All Neoliberals Now. Let’s Change That.

One thing that struck home during our extended election campaign was how our mainstream political parties have become deeply invested in neoliberalism. While it has several descriptions, reflective of its insidious vagueness, neoliberalism is the merger of political and economic ideology most often called “free market fundamentalism.” It is a sort of merger of political and commercial/corporate powers usually born out of the surrender of incidents of political sovereignty through multi-national financial and trade agreements.

It’s a process akin to the tactics of a boa constrictor whose victims often fail to realize the severity of their predicament until its (Read more…)

Writings of J. Todd Ring: New Leadership Urgently Needed For The US, Canada and Britain

Imagine if Martin Luther King Jr., Tommy Douglas and Tony Benn were President of the US, and Prime Ministers of Canada and Britain, respectively. The world would certainly be a far better, more just, freer, more peaceful, and safer place. But we do not. In all three of these “leading” nations we have neoliberal corporate […]

Writings of J. Todd Ring: New Leadership Urgently Needed For The US, Canada and Britain

Imagine if Martin Luther King Jr., Tommy Douglas and Tony Benn were President of the US, and Prime Ministers of Canada and Britain, respectively. The world would certainly be a far better, more just, freer, more peaceful, and safer place. But we do not. In all three of these “leading” nations we have neoliberal corporate […]

Writings of J. Todd Ring: Election 2015 and Strategic Voting: Madness, or Practical Necessity?

An economic and political analysis of Canada, neoliberalism, and the world Get a cup of coffee or tea, or a glass of wine, and settle in – this is not sound-bite commentary. We are going to dig deep. “A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson It pains me to […]

Writings of J. Todd Ring: Election 2015 and Strategic Voting: Madness, or Practical Necessity?

An economic and political analysis of Canada, neoliberalism, and the world Get a cup of coffee or tea, or a glass of wine, and settle in – this is not sound-bite commentary. We are going to dig deep. “A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson It pains me to […]

Writings of J. Todd Ring: Naomi Klein on Neoliberalism, the Shock Doctrine and Disaster Capitalism

Normally I post only essays that I have written on my blog, but this deserves to be an exception to the rule. This is a true Must-Watch. Naomi Klein clarifies the history of neoliberalism and the current state of the world in a few short minutes. 100,000 protests a year in China now, protests across […]

Writings of J. Todd Ring: Thoughts on the NDP

I’d like to have confidence in the NDP, but they have become a neoliberal party, in full submission to the corporate powers and the neoliberal corporate agenda, despite the fanfare and the piece-meal token gestures. Mulcair certainly is no Tommy Douglas, nor is he a Tony Benn. I hope I am wrong, and I’d be […]

Writings of J. Todd Ring: Conservatives in Canada swing further to the far right – the other two major parties are little better

The Conservative party of Canada is clearly playing into fear, xenophobia and racism as a way to win votes, as its “War on Terror” narrative, its racial baiting and its new snitch line show. This is sickening. Mind you, the Liberals and NDP have eerily similar agendas to the Conservatives on key issues of the […]

Politics and its Discontents: A Vanity Production?

Yesterday morning, I read a piece by Martin Regg Cohn on the impending sale of Ontario’s Hydro One. When it is completed, 60% of our publically-owned asset will have been sold off. During a brief walk in the afternoon, I decided to write a letter to my local MPP with a copy to Premier Kathleen Wynne to protest the sale. While it may be of some interest to people residing in Ontario, my letter may be regarded by those residing elsewhere as a vanity production, perhaps, given the ultimate futility of speaking or writing to our representatives in our currently (Read more…)

Writings of J. Todd Ring: Free Trade, CETA, TPP, and the US and Canadian Federal Elections: Some Critical Perspective

The following is critical to understand – for the people of Canada, the US, Europe and the world: “free trade” deals such those already signed (NAFTA), and those being pushed through with great secrecy now (CETA, TTIP and TPP), are agreements which grant supra-national powers to transnational corporations, powers over and above democratically elected governments, […]

The Disaffected Lib: Where Is the Exit Door?

How long will Canada remain under the boot of market fundamentalism? This is the laissez faire face of modern neoliberalism that has taken hold throughout the developed world, Canada included.

It manifests itself most directly in free trade agreements and associated institutions such as the IMF, the World Trade Organization, and the World Bank. Rarely seen is its presence in parallel or “deep government.”

Neoliberalism is an ideology and, like most ideologies, it’s anchored in both fact and plenty of belief. It’s sort of faith-based. Its disciples believe neoliberalism is itself an ethic, in fact the best and preferred (Read more…)

Pushed to the Left and Loving It: The Most Powerful Symbol You Will See This Election

I am a Canadian, free to speak without fear, free to worship in my own way, free to stand for what I think right, free to oppose what I believe wrong, or free to choose those who shall govern my country. This heritage of freedom I pledge to uphold for myself and all mankind. John Diefenbaker

On January 6, 1941, Franklin Roosevelt, in his State of the Union Address; put forward four tenets of freedom that every citizen should enjoy:Freedom of SpeechFreedom of WorshipFreedom from WantFreedom from FearI watched a short Canadian newsreel recently, (Read more…)

. . . → Read More: Pushed to the Left and Loving It: The Most Powerful Symbol You Will See This Election

Political Eh-conomy: “Can ‘people over profits’ become a reality in Greece?”

This is the full transcript of my podcast interview with John Milios; it appeared earlier this week in Jacobin. John is a prominent figure within Syriza; he was the party’s chief economic advisor until earlier this year and is also a member of the party’s central committee, one of the 109 who signed a letter last week opposing the new memorandum.

Here, he discusses Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras’s decision to hold the July 5 referendum, the anti-austerity course not taken by Syriza, and how the slogan “people over profits” can become a concrete reality in Greece.

Michal Rozworski: What is the (Read more…)

Michal Rozworski » Political Eh-conomy: “Can ‘people over profits’ become a reality in Greece?”

This is the full transcript of my podcast interview with John Milios; it appeared earlier this week in Jacobin. John is a prominent figure within Syriza; he was the party’s chief economic advisor until earlier this year and is also a member of the party’s central committee, one of the 109 who signed a letter last week opposing the new memorandum.

Here, he discusses Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras’s decision to hold the July 5 referendum, the anti-austerity course not taken by Syriza, and how the slogan “people over profits” can become a concrete reality in Greece.

Michal Rozworski: What is the (Read more…)

Political Eh-conomy: Podcast: Syriza’s John Milios, “I will continue to fight against austerity”

https://politicalehconomy.files.wordpress.com/2015/07/podcast150720-greece-milios.mp3

 

Greece continues to be in flux. Two weeks ago, the Greek people voted over 60% No in a referendum on further austerity. One week ago, the Greek government agreed to a new Memorandum in principle after an all-night negotiation, described at times as “mental water-boarding”. Finally, last Wednesday, the first pieces of enabling legislation were passed by the Greek Parliament with a large rebellion of Syriza MPs voting against the laws.

Since then debate has raged in and outside Greece about the future of the Eurozone, the political strategy chosen by the Syriza (Read more…)

Michal Rozworski » Political Eh-conomy: Podcast: Syriza’s John Milios, “I will continue to fight against austerity”

http://rozworski.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/podcast150720-greece-milios.mp3

 

Greece continues to be in flux. Two weeks ago, the Greek people voted over 60% No in a referendum on further austerity. One week ago, the Greek government agreed to a new Memorandum in principle after an all-night negotiation, described at times as “mental water-boarding”. Finally, last Wednesday, the first pieces of enabling legislation were passed by the Greek Parliament with a large rebellion of Syriza MPs voting against the laws.

Since then debate has raged in and outside Greece about the future of the Eurozone, the political strategy chosen by the Syriza leadership and (Read more…)

Alberta Politics: Can the Great Wall of Saskatchewan resist Rachel Notley’s wish to put democracy back into energy politics?

PHOTOS: Canada’s provincial and territorial premiers in Newfoundland, with St. John’s Harbor visible in the background (CBC Photo). One hopes they didn’t have to walk up that hill! Below: Alberta Premier Rachel Notley and Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall (CP Photo). The acerbic public disagreement between Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall and Alberta Premier Rachel Notley at […]

The post Can the Great Wall of Saskatchewan resist Rachel Notley’s wish to put democracy back into energy politics? appeared first on Alberta Politics.

Parchment in the Fire: Growth, what growth? Thatcherism fails to produce the goods | Business | The Guardian

Growth, what growth? Thatcherism fails to produce the goods | Business | The Guardian.

Katie Allen

Margaret Thatcher’s policies of privatisation, light-touch regulation and low income tax failed to boost growth, according to a new study that casts doubt on the merits of free market economies.

In a wide-ranging analysis of Britain’s performance in the decades before and after 1979, economists at the University of Cambridge say the liberal economic policies pioneered by Thatcher have been accompanied by higher unemployment and inequality. At the same time, contrary to widespread belief, GDP and productivity have grown more slowly since 1979 compared (Read more…)

Joe Fantauzzi: Ontario’s Common Sense Revolution at 20: A Look Back

Today marks 20 years since the Progressive Conservative Party foisted its so-called “Common Sense Revolution” on Ontario. Former PC Ontario leader Tim Hudak took to Twitter this morning to extol the virtues of this full-throated neoliberal experiment, declaring it “the most effective, courageous gov[ernment]” in his lifetime. Some remember those days differently. Here are a few […]

Joe Fantauzzi: Ontario’s Common Sense Revolution at 20: A Look Back

Today marks 20 years since the Progressive Conservative Party foisted its so-called “Common Sense Revolution” on Ontario. Former PC Ontario leader Tim Hudak took to Twitter this morning to extol the virtues of this full-throated neoliberal experiment, declaring it “the most effective, courageous gov[ernment]” in his lifetime. Some remember those days differently. Here are a few […]

Politics and its Discontents: … Your Young Men Will See Visions, Your Old Men Will Dream Dreams.

Although far from a biblical scholar, I find the above line, taken from the Book of Acts, to be an apt title. Even though I am taking it out of context, it encapsulates for me a capacity that the world in general, and Canada in particular, has lost: the capacity to dream of and envisage a better reality than what we have settled for.

Under the relentless barrage of neoconservative propaganda, we have succumbed to the kind of existence epitomized in the video I posted the other day, a world of mindless consumerism, relentless environmental despoliation, and spiritual barrenness. (Read more…)

Parchment in the Fire: Temporary and part-time jobs surge promotes inequality, says OECD | Business | The Guardian

Temporary and part-time jobs surge promotes inequality, says OECD | Business | The Guardian.

Heather Stewart

A surge in self-employment and temporary or part-time jobs over the past two decades has been a key factor behind the rise in inequality in the world’s industrialised countries, according to a major new study by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.

 

The Paris-based club, which has been a driving force in arguing that increasing inequality jeopardises economic growth, says more than half of all job creation in its 34 member countries since the mid-1990s has been in “non-standard work”, which accounts (Read more…)

The Disaffected Lib: It Couldn’t Be Clearer but Nobody in Ottawa is Listening – Running Out the Clock

Okay, I agree – the science isn’t in.

Not all of it anyway.  There’s more coming in almost daily – research, studies, experiments, observations and analyses, projections – there’s a continually growing mountain of information and knowledge.

The thing is – while there’s more to come, it would be beyond foolish to expect anything else in a world caught in a state of flux.  The important thing is that this new science pouring in affirms, corroborates, supports and reinforces the scientific consensus on anthropogenic or man-made global warming.

Sure the Earth has always changed in the past only not like (Read more…)