Accidental Deliberations: Sunday Morning Links

This and that for your Sunday reading. – David Masciotra offers a cultural case for a basic income: Reward, purpose and meaning are the abstractions meant to pacify the poor and the working class. The rich have wealth, comfort and pleasure. They also have a universal basic income. In Jacobin, Matt Bruenig recently reported that ...

Accidental Deliberations: Friday Morning Links

Assorted content to end your week. – Per Molander examines new research on the sources of inequality which concludes that massive gaps in wealth and income inevitably arise purely out of chance rather than any individual merit: Differences in income or assets that are based on differences in capabilities or effort are widely considered to ...

Accidental Deliberations: Sunday Morning Links

This and that for your Sunday reading. – James Wilt writes that the PR campaign pushing pipelines is based largely on the false claim that the only other choice is to allow even more dangerous means of facilitating the burning of fossil fuels. And David Suzuki argues that the cost of addressing obvious environmental problems ...

Accidental Deliberations: Wednesday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material for your mid-week reading. – Jared Bernstein highlights how a generation of public policy has systematically transferred risk from the wealthy who claim to bear it, to the general public which can’t afford to do so: Back in the late 2000s, two authors — the economics journalist Peter Gosselin and the political scientist ...

The Sir Robert Bond Papers: Fact-checking CBC and Food Banks #nlpoli

The headline on the CBC story just felt wrong. The kind of over-the-top exaggeration that just sounds biased. Distorted. Wrong. “Food bank need jumps in N.L., ending years-long trend.” The first sentence was the same:  “After six years of near-consistent decline, food bank usage has jumped in Newfoundland and Labrador.” The second sentence, though, wasn’t ...

The Progressive Economics Forum: New child benefit impact on child poverty overblown

In September, I expressed my concerns that the new Canada Child Benefit (CCB) may not be responsible for a 40% reduction in child poverty as claimed by the Minister of Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC).  Using Statcan’s tax modelling software SPSD/M, I calculated that you’d get a 14% drop in child poverty due to ...

Accidental Deliberations: Tuesday Afternoon Links

This and that for your Tuesday reading. – Lynn Parramore interviews Mariana Mazzucato about the options available to build a more fair and inclusive economy even in the face of corporatist leaders like Donald Trump: LP: In your earlier book, The Entrepreneurial State, you describe a model of capitalism that would address many of these ...

Accidental Deliberations: Monday Afternoon Links

Miscellaneous material for your Monday reading. – Danielle Martin highlights how investments in ending poverty including a basic income can improve health outcomes among other key social indicators: Far more than consumption of medical care, income is the strongest predictor of health. Canadians are more likely to die at an earlier age and suffer more ...

Accidental Deliberations: Sunday Morning Links

This and that for your Sunday reading. – Ben Tarnoff discusses the two winners – and the many losers – created by the spread of neoliberalism: Neoliberalism can mean many things, including an economic program, a political project, and a phase of capitalism dating from the 1970s. At its root, however, neoliberalism is the idea ...

The Progressive Economics Forum: How Housing Policy Benefits from a Socioeconomic Perspective

Over at the web site of the Calgary Homeless Foundation, I’ve written a blog post titled “How Housing Policy Benefits from a Socioeconomic Perspective.” Points raised in the blog post include the following: -Leaders in Canada’s non-profit housing sector should think beyond just housing, and think hard about the importance of economic and social factors ...

Accidental Deliberations: Wednesday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material for your mid-week reading. – Jacob Levy highlights the importance of “identity politics” – or more specifically, the willingness to fight against systematic inequality of all kinds – as part of an effective progressive movement. And George Monbiot writes that we should be returning to first principles when it comes to the economy, ...

We Pivot: How to Not Kill the Poor

You don’t have to be a mad fascist like Duterte in the Philippines, who is encouraging police and others to murder drug users or dealers. He said he’s happy to slaughter them, “like Hitler.” You just have to be an … [Read more]

Accidental Deliberations: Saturday Afternoon Links

Assorted content for your weekend reading. – Lana Payne points out the significance of even central bankers like Mark Carney recognizing the desperate need to combat inequality. And Iglika Ivanova discusses how British Columbia’s election-year surplus represents a wasted opportunity to start addressing the social problems which the Libs have been exacerbating for a decade ...

Accidental Deliberations: Thursday Morning Links

This and that for your Thursday reading. – Citizens for Public Justice laments the Libs’ and Cons’ joint effort to vote down the NDP’s push for a national anti-poverty strategy. And Sean Speer and Rob Gillezeau make the case for an improved Working Income Tax Benefit which should be palatable across the political spectrum. – ...

Accidental Deliberations: Tuesday Morning Links

This and that for your Tuesday reading. – Gary Bloch writes about the costs of poverty (and the small-minded attitude toward public supports which allows it to remain): We also see the effects of poverty at home: the discomfort of living next to people who are struggling to survive, with the resulting anger and irritation ...

The Progressive Economics Forum: Enumerating Homeless Persons

Over at the web site of the Calgary Homeless Foundation, I’ve written a blog post titled “Ten things to know about Canadian attempts to count homeless persons through Point-in-Time Counts.” Points I raise in the post include the following: -Efforts to enumerate homeless persons in Canada often have mixed objectives.  In part, an attempt is ...

Accidental Deliberations: Monday Afternoon Links

Miscellaneous material to start your week. – Miles Corak asks how we should see the growing concentration of income at the top of the spectrum, and concludes that we should be concerned mostly with the breakdown between personal merit and success among the extremely privileged: Connections matter. And for the top earners this might even ...

Accidental Deliberations: Sunday Afternoon Links

This and that for your Sunday reading. – Janice Fine discusses how the decline of organized labour as a political force has opened the door for the likes of Donald Trump: Just when we need them most, the main institutions that have fought for decent jobs are a shadow of their former selves. Unions that ...

A Puff of Absurdity: Monbiot’s Impossible Crises

George Monbiot lists 13 crises, but warns you should only read the list if you’re feeling very strong. It’s an appropriate warning. He’s barely even talking about climate change here, so this list could be so much longer including the degradation of the oceans, poisoned waterways, messed up ecosystems…  His list is more political in ...

Accidental Deliberations: Sunday Morning Links

This and that for your Sunday reading. – Andrew Nikiforuk highlights how Donald Trump’s election is just one more predictable consequence of the end of shared growth – even as it figures to perpetuate that reality. And Andrew Coyne argues that Trump’s win under the U.S.’ warped electoral rules should thoroughly debunk the theory that ...

The Progressive Economics Forum: Calgary Homeless Foundation’s Research Agenda

The Calgary Homeless Foundation (CHF) has just released its updated Research Agenda (which I co-authored).  CHF is a non-governmental organization that disburses funding to non-profit organizations in Calgary to help persons experiencing homelessness.  Our Research Agenda is a bit like an annual report (except it typically comes out once very two years). The following points ...

Accidental Deliberations: Thursday Morning Links

This and that for your Thursday reading. – Wolfgang Munchau writes that the rise of right-wing insurrectionism can be traced largely to “centre-left” parties who have focused most of their attention on imposing austerity and catering to the corporate sector while offering little to citizens, while Naomi Klein comments on the role of neoliberal politics ...

Accidental Deliberations: Friday Morning Links

Assorted content to end your week. – John McDonnell outlines a progressive alternative to neoliberal economic policy: The increasing automation of jobs, reduced dependence on carbon fuels, artificial intelligence and the so-called gig economy have provoked understandable anger among many workers whose jobs are under threat. More generally, concerns about the effect on the labour market are ...

Accidental Deliberations: Thursday Morning Links

This and that for your Thursday reading. – Community Food Centres Canada highlights the need for social assistance benefits to keep up with the cost of living, while noting that Ontario (among other jurisdictions) has fallen well behind in that task: It’s been far too long since social assistance rates have been viewed through the ...

The Progressive Economics Forum: Ten things to know about the CPP debate

This fall, Canada’s Parliament will debate a proposal to expand the Canada Pension Plan (CPP).  And over at the Behind the Numbers web site, I’m co-author of a blog post titled “Ten things to know about the CPP debate.” The blog post’s other co-authors are Allan Moscovitch and Richard Lochead. Points raised in the blog ...