Working people need to seek out solidarity opportunities.
Unions and unionized workers need to reach out to non-unionized workers and seek legislative improvements for all, like improvements to the EI and doubling the CPP and renegotiating the Canada Health Accord and expanding Medicare and getting a national pharmacare program and starting a national childcare program and building a poverty reduction plan and a national housing strategy and no longer funding First Peoples at third world conditions. And the list, actually, does go on.
And public sector workers need to build solidarity with private sector workers, whose union density is declining.
Today is Friday. Let’s make it “think for ourselves Friday.”
It’ll work: the government/corporations/1% won’t see it coming!
Twitter / occupythemob: http://t.co/doHx1xWO4l.
December 17, 2013 Fried Squirrels (0) December 20, 2013 Enbridge: What Now? We Escalate Our Fight (4) January 7, 2012 Day Two of Tragedy of the Market: From Crisis to Commons (0) January 7, 2012 Opening Panel from the Tragedy of the Market: From Crisis to Commons (0)
It’s all about vision and hope, in an effort to envision how economics and markets can exist after the toxicity of capitalism is gone, gone gone. Are you up for it?
Last night, John Holloway, author of Crack Capitalism, was the SFU Institute for the Humanities‘ guest lecturer, skyped in from Mexico. He was full of inspiration and clarity. Enjoy my twitter reflections below.
[View the story "John Holloway on Fixing Capitalism" on Storify]
January 7, 2012 Day Two of Tragedy of the Market: From Crisis to Commons (0) January 7, 2012 Opening Panel from the Tragedy (Read more…) . . . → Read More: Politics, Re-Spun: Capitalism: Swing Your Sledgehammer
Well, here’s something you don’t see [ever] in corporate media: a review of tax measures in the USA since the crash in 2008 that have succeeded in increasing taxes on the rich. And it turns out, tax increases that are regressive [sales taxes, etc.] or include the non-rich, seemed to fail quite a bit.
How did these taxes on the 1% succeed?
One way is mixing “traditional lobbying with the direct action of the Occupy movement.”
And here’s some rationale for why the rich should pay more, with tax revenues going to restore and improve public services:
Economic growth suggests that infinite growth is possible. Even with a growing earth population and increasing climate breakdown, people still think we can continue growing.
I like using the seasons analogy to describe that human economic activity ought follow the cycle of seasons, with a steadying imperative. This is why I like the Steady State folks.: “ Perpetual economic growth is neither possible nor desirable. Growth, especially in wealthy nations, is already causing more problems than it solves. Recession isn’t sustainable or healthy either. The positive, sustainable alternative is a steady state economy.”
Here’s Kai Nagata’s excellent analogy (Read more…)
Imagine an eco-community of micro-homes designed as a first step out of homelessness.
Housing, easy to get into, if people care. Occupy Madison in Wisconsin has come up with an innovative first step of a solution [see below].
These 96 square foot homes are no long term solution, at all. But if you’re struggling to get some stability in your life and you’re homeless, it’s that much harder. Just having a roof over your head can give you warmth and a good night sleep to help you be more capable of doing everything else you need to improve your life.
It’s a crisp, foggy November Saturday morning in the south side of the city. Seventeen people sit in the large open area at the back end of an organic fair trade coffee shop run by a workers’ co-op inspired by the Mondragon movement in Spain. Meet-ups like this are quite common in this shop.
The male and female co-facilitators move briskly through the agenda with the help of the nodding volunteer maintaining the speakers list. There are sporadic jazz-hand gestures, common from the Occupy Movement, as well as a strict yet comfortable group norm of only one person speaking at (Read more…)
Balloons are a threat to civil order. The police must protect themselves from you with riot gear. You are a bad person.
You. You enemy of the state. You radical environmentalist. Or worker rights advocate. Or whatever cause you are promoting.
You. You are a threat to order. When you gather, you are a threat to civil order. You may escalate your activities to the criminality you harbour in your mind.
You. You are a threat to unquestioned profitability for the 1%.
Why? Because you think Walmart is a bad employer. And maybe even bad for the planet.
So this (Read more…)
Greed is a powerful thing. It motivates the greedy to convince workers that they should hate any efforts to make their work better and reduce the level of abuse and oppression they suffer.
If you’d like a list of why they want us to hate our unions, click through to enjoy this brilliant cartoon.
And while you enjoy this light, graphic representation, remember that the list isn’t exclusive. We can also add in this idea that non-union workers are trained to hate unionized workers who make more money than them. The goal, apparently, is that if you’re suffering with pay (Read more…)
September 12, 2013
PTSD, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, is thankfully becoming less stigmatized due to increased awareness, but like most mental health issues, there stigma that prevents open discussion about mental health is profound. But I recall 2-3 decades ago it was far worse.
There are a few PTSD events that have come up recently that are related to Canada’s shameful neglect and mistreatment of Canadian Forces personnel and veterans suffering from PTSD.
Kate MacEachern went on a long walk last year to raise awareness and funds for PTSD treatment. Wanting to do it again this year, it became incredibly (Read more…)
You aren’t middle class if you own a cottage. Remember that.
If I need to single-handedly reboot the Occupy Movement for this one, I’ll do it, I tell ya [emphasis is mine]:
A month ago, I had a conversation with Deb Hutton, wife of PC leader Tim Hudak, who said the chances of the Conservatives picking up any of the five seats up for grabs on byelection night were pretty remote.
“They’re all Liberal seats,” she said. “It’s summer time when our most loyal supporters are away at the cottage. We’re obviously going to give it our best, but….” (Read more…)
You actually do deserve a break today.
What ails us?
A large proportion of the total produce goes to a small minority of the population, many of whom do no work at all. Owing to the absence of any central control over production, we produce hosts of things that are not wanted. We keep a large percentage of the working population idle, because we can dispense with their labor by making the others overwork.
I wrote about that small minority on Thursday, all those tax havens. But we should also recall that hyper-consumption destroys our environment and wastes human effort (Read more…)
If we were harmless, the riot cops would stay home.
It’s Friday. It’s been a long week. Like most weeks. We are taught to fit in and obey.
We are told that individuality and the search for social justice will get us in trouble, either by government surveillance or social ostracism.
We speak out, still. We put on our Guy Fawkes masks, or not. We endure trolls online.
But this one’s for you.
If the Occupy Movement were no threat, there wouldn’t have been a massive, coordinated, international effort among the elites, their media and their governments to squash it (Read more…)
Which tax haven is right for you?
Class war is alive and well.
I have this rose-coloured, nostalgic dream of history. Once upon a time we emerged from feudalism with a democratic revolution. All were equal. Well, most.
But the hope of democracy was to rid the world of the despot rule of aristocracy. But then we got corporations. Many of the aristocratic elite ended up entrenching their power through these fake humans. And we still have the aristocrats today. And for centuries, the rest of the elite have wielded power through corporations.
So this year when data was leaked (Read more…)
$3.85 billion in profit is just not enough. Union busting and global greed now!
Gratitude, then and now. It used to include a t-shirt and more, for all employees around the world. Now, union busting.
The best part of the Teamster Local 213 rally in Richmond on Saturday was the humanity: the stage was largely filled with Teamsters telling their stories, showing everyone how this 10 week lockout is affecting them as people, and the “humanity” that IKEA markets itself with around the world.
IKEA made $3.85 billion in profits in 2011. Its founder is worth $52 billion. (Read more…)
It’s been some time now since I’ve posted, but, an upcoming event that is of mega importance is coming up in Vancouver. Occupy Vancouver is moving closer and closer to becoming a sustainable movement due to their committment to indigenous ways like guiding principles and now, Talking Circles. An upcoming workshop on this with Chief Phil Lane Jr. facilitating will place Occupy Vancouver ahead of the pack in this world wide movement. It’s good to see Vancouver take a lead on this as it demonstrates true and sincere actions to help change the world for the better. Please read on, (Read more…)
So, did you get a 3% raise last year? The average Canadian did. See the first chart below.
If not, you’re behind the average Canadian. And even with a small offset of increased hours worked going up by only 1% for the 12 months ending last June, at worst, the average Canadian saw a 2% raise. And if you want to see if people in your province earned even MORE than that 2%, scroll all the way down. Hint: only 3 provinces were below the average.
So did you get a 2% raise? If not, do you know who, politically,
. . . → Read More: Politics, Re-Spun: So Did YOU Get a 3% Raise Last Year?
What do you think about the student strike in Quebec?
What do you think of the Manifesto for a Maple Spring?
Some of the Politics, Re-Spun crew explore it from each of our perspectives:
1. Are people naive to expect the Quebec tuition protesters to be the leaders of a Maple Spring to expand the Arab Spring from 2011 through Canada this year?
There are very different conditions in Canada and Arab world, obviously. Nonetheless, it’s clear that protest, insurrection and civil disobedience have re-entered the public imagination as a legitimate form of participatory politics. As such, I don’t read
. . . → Read More: Politics, Re-Spun: Quebec Students and a Maple Spring
Below is a recent tweet from a new worker/NDP/union attack Twitter i.d. talking about how awful unionized workers are. Read it, then let’s de-spin it for sanity:
Average salary in BC $44k, average teacher salary $70k bced.gov.bc.ca/reporting/ #Underpaid #Overworked #Lies #BCPoli #BCNDP #BCTF
via Twitter / @NotBCNDP: Average salary in BC $44k, ….
Firstly, teachers have at least a four year university degree, plus an extra year of teacher training. The average working person in BC doesn’t have that much training.
Secondly, the average years of experience for teachers is over 12. That puts them at
. . . → Read More: Politics, Re-Spun: More Worker Bashing in BC, with Squishy Numbers
Ben Isitt is a Victoria city councillor, historian, professor, lawyer and optimist.
Rarely have I been so moved by an account of the struggle working people have in the face of this new world order of anti-worker 1%ism.
We are so effectively trained to accept the balance of power is heavily tilted towards employers and employer-friendly/funded governments that we miss out on obvious things like our own rights.
So let’s not tolerate any more mill explosions, indifferent employers and governments, and neglected health and safety training.
Here is the text of the speech I gave at Victoria’s Day of Mourning
. . . → Read More: Politics, Re-Spun: Let’s Have an End to People Dying at Work
Carrément dans le rouge.
Just a quick memo to Canada’s vocal, reactionary minority (with vast over-representation on online forums and comments sections): the students in Quebec do not care that you think they are: “spoiled brats,” “crazy,” “anarchists,” “communists,” and/or “French” (?!). Your moaning and complaining is absolutely and utterly vacuous. Why? Because the students, unlike you, are actually mobilized and organized and are standing up for their rights. You, on the other hand, are sitting down for plutocracy. They are expanding our conception of what democratic politics ought to entail. They are engaging in the fundamental
. . . → Read More: Politics, Re-Spun: Montreal Calling: On the “Quebec Spring” & its Enemies
Today is the first day of the rest of COPE Vancouver’s life. Today is the day where the new executive needs to make its first priority revitalizing the party by building unity around progressive principles and policies, and moving past pettiness.
If it cannot get past the factionism, it simply is not a party with a political agenda, but a venue for personality feuds. I have no time for that, and only in part because such pettiness led to an AGM that took almost 6 hours yesterday.
COPE is not a party with any kind of balance of power between
. . . → Read More: Politics, Re-Spun: Revitalizing COPE Vancouver, Right Now.
One of the biggest wastes of taxpayer money during the past year was the needless occupation of a heavy police force, supplemented by the RCMP, around the non-violent Occupy Vancouver gathering at the Art Gallery. So vexed was the police chief, he begged the province for funds to bolster the police presence with a “riot squad”. I doubt that’s the reason the province refused to pay Chu’s bill
By reading 90% of the Canadian media, you’d have thought the people who Occupied cities across Canada and the world were unemployable dirty fucking hippies intent on violence and rape.
Seems a majority of Canadians – and most of the world – still do not share the media’s jaundiced view of the mostly young people who pitched tents . . . → Read More: Media’s anti-Occupy stance revealed. More than half of Canadians support the movement.
By reading 90% of the Canadian media, you’d have thought the people who Occupied cities across Canada and the world were unemployable dirty fucking hippies intent on violence and rape. Seems a majority of Canadians – and most of the world – do not share the media’s jaundiced view of the mostly young people who pitched tents and gathered overwhelmingly in non-violent protest of a variety of