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Accidental Deliberations: Wednesday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material for your mid-week reading.- John Clarke discusses the challenges facing social movements trying to resist austerity and push for action on poverty in the face of mushy-middle governments who lack any commitment to those principle… . . . → Read More: Accidental Deliberations: Wednesday Morning Links

Accidental Deliberations: Tuesday Morning Links

This and that for your Tuesday reading.- Scott Santens discusses how a basic income could help to foster social cohesion. And Jared Bernstein confirms the seemingly obvious point that properly-funded social programs work wonders in reducing poverty. – … . . . → Read More: Accidental Deliberations: Tuesday Morning Links

Accidental Deliberations: On common values

There’s reason to be wary about the Libs’ handling of the Senate, as Thomas Walkom writes in his latest column. But it’s also worth noting that contrary to Walkom’s conflation of the two, there are important differences between selecting prospective Se… . . . → Read More: Accidental Deliberations: On common values

Accidental Deliberations: New column day

Here, on how the kindness and compassion underlying our welcoming of Syrian refugees deserves a far larger place in a wide range of public policy decisions.For further reading…- Zack Beauchamp summarizes the exclusionary rhetoric that’s propelled Don… . . . → Read More: Accidental Deliberations: New column day

Accidental Deliberations: Wednesday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material for your mid-week reading.- Ronald Inglehart discusses the political roots of inequality – and the likelihood that the forces that have allowed it to fester for decades will eventually be reversed:New political alignments, in sho… . . . → Read More: Accidental Deliberations: Wednesday Morning Links

Accidental Deliberations: Thursday Morning Links

This and that for your Thursday reading.- Duncan Cameron offers his take on the Paris climate change conference. Martin Lukacs notes that while the agreement reached there may not accomplish anywhere near what we need, the building climate movement sho… . . . → Read More: Accidental Deliberations: Thursday Morning Links

Accidental Deliberations: Tuesday Morning Links

This and that for your Tuesday reading.- David MacDonald offers some alternative suggestions that can do far more to reduce inequality and boost Canada’s economy than the Libs’ upper-class tax shuffle. And Karl Nerenberg reminds us that the most import… . . . → Read More: Accidental Deliberations: Tuesday Morning Links

Accidental Deliberations: Thursday Morning Links

This and that for your Thursday reading.- George Monbiot discusses the inherent conflict between consumption and conservation:We can persuade ourselves that we are living on thin air, floating through a weightless economy, as gullible futurologists pr… . . . → Read More: Accidental Deliberations: Thursday Morning Links

Accidental Deliberations: Thursday Morning Links

This and that for your Thursday reading.

- Seth Klein discusses the need to deal with climate change with the same sense of urgency and common purpose we’ve historically associated with major wars: Canada’s experience in WWI and WWII serves to remind us that our society has managed a dramatic restructuring of the economy before. During both world wars, our economy had to be entirely re-tooled for a new common purpose: scarce resources were deployed for the task at hand, Victory Bonds were sold, profits were restricted to prevent war-time profiteering, new taxes were levied, household consumption shifted and quotas (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: Saturday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material for your weekend reading.

- Thomas Walkom takes a broad look at the problems with the Trans-Pacific Partnership, while noting that the Trudeau Libs don’t seem inclined to address them at all. Deirdre Fulton sees the final text as being worse than anybody suspected based even on the previous leaked drafts. Doctors Without Borders notes that its concerns about access to medications haven’t been dealt with at all. And David Dayen examines how the TPP will affect the financial-sector regulations which would otherwise to serve to avoid or respond to economic meltdowns: Banks and other financial institutions would (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: Saturday Morning Links

Assorted content for your weekend reading.

- Emily Dugan writes about the Equality and Human Rights Commission’s finding that young UK adults are facing the worst economic prospects of the last several generations. And Betty Ann Adam reports on Charles Plante’s work on the value of a living wage, both for employers and society at large.

- Sutton Eaves wonders why climate change wasn’t a defining issue in Canada’s federal election. And Naomi Klein and Avi Lewis highlight the urgent need for an activist push for progress now.

- Lindsay Hines and Cindy Karnett report on the B.C. Libs’ (Read more…)

Politics and its Discontents: A Day Well-Spent

There is something both restorative and energizing about spending time among people who are politically engaged, and that is probably the best way to describe those in attendance at both the Toronto Star Tent and the Amazon.ca Bestsellers Stage yesterday at Toronto’s Word On The Street. As much as I have a strong aversion to Toronto’s congestion, it has an energy that so many other cities lack.

It was, weather-wise, a perfect day to go down to Harbourfront Centre, the new home of the annual celebration of the written word. And for the first time, I got there early (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: Sunday Morning Links

This and that for your Sunday reading.

- Jennifer Wells writes about the drastic difference in pay between CEOs and everybody else. And Henry Farrell interviews Lauren Rivera about the advantage privileged children have in being able to rely on parents’ social networks and funding rather than needing to learn or work for themselves: One of your most counter-intuitive arguments is that students from working class and lower-middle class backgrounds are less likely to get elite jobs, because they concentrate on studying rather than their social life at college. That’s the opposite of what the conventional wisdom would suggest. How (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: On contrasting activities

Thomas Walkom rightly notes that this fall’s election has seen somewhat more discussion of government acting in the public interest than we’ve seen in some time. But it’s worth drawing a distinction between the varieties of intervention on offer from the NDP and the Libs respectively.

As much as the latter have tried to suggest that running immediate deficits is the sole measure of progressivism, the real difference between the two lies in their longer-term plans.

For the NDP, the goal of an active government is to build up a stronger social safety net over time. Immediate funding for child (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: Saturday Morning Links

Assorted content for your weekend reading.

- Thomas Walkom discusses how Canadian workers are feeling the pain of decades of policy designed to suppress wages – and notes there’s plenty more all parties should be doing to change that reality. And Doug Saunders points out what we should want our next federal government to pursue to bring about lasting growth: Many economists came to realize not only that government intervention bailed many countries out of the post-2008 recession and restored growth and employment, but that the crisis itself may have been caused, in good part, by the disappearance of active (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: Wednesday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material for your mid-week reading.

- Jim Stanford, Iglika Ivanova and David MacDonald each highlight how there’s far more to be concerned about in Canada’s economy beyond the GDP dip alone. Both Thomas Walkom and the Star’s editorial board write that it’s clear the Cons have nothing to offer when it comes to trying to improve on our current stagnation, while Balbulican notes that the Cons’ economic message amounts to little more than denial. And David Climenhaga calls out the laughable attempt by Alberta’s right wing to shield Stephen Harper from blame for a decade of failed federal (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: Thursday Morning Links

This and that for your Thursday reading.

- Vanessa Houlder reports on the OECD’s call for countries to make far more of an effort to ensure tax compliance among their wealthiest individuals.

- Scott Gilmore discovers the abusiveness of the payday loan industry by accident due to a lender’s confusion between him and an actual borrower: Regulations vary. Manitoba limits prices at $17 for every $100 borrowed. In Ontario it is $21. It sounds reasonable, but that is an annual percentage rate of over 540%, twice the traditional vig charged by loan sharks. Stan Keyes, the former federal cabinet minister (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: Thursday Morning Links

This and that for your Thursday reading.

- Michael Leachman debunks the claim that progressive tax rates on the rich cause any problems from an economic development standpoint. And Daisy Srblin argues for a strong and unapologetic movement toward a fairer tax system: It is now up to the left to provide an alternative. Let’s stop tinkering with a broken model, and instead come up with something new and radical, based on the fundamental principles of  redistribution and fairness.

What could this system look like? The Fabian report ‘Tax for our Times’ provides plenty of ideas. Reasserting the salience of (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: Saturday Morning Links

Assorted content for your weekend reading.

- Paul de Grauwe points out that the European push to force Greece into continued austerity is the most important factor holding back a recovery, as the country would be fully solvent if it were being allowed to borrow money on anything but the most draconian of terms. And Paul Mason criticizes the war that’s been declared against the Greek public for trying to pursue democratic governance – while noting that the public’s justified dissatisfaction isn’t going away regardless of the result of the impending referendum.

- Sherif Alsayed-Ali responds to the news that (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: Sunday Morning Links

This and that for your Sunday reading.

- Jeff Spross argues that in addition to ensuring that employees are fairly paid for the overtime hours they work, we should also be pushing to ensure people aren’t required to work as much to begin with. And Angella MacEwen points out that any spin about increasing wages is based almost entirely on a proportional increase in hours worked, rather than workers receiving any benefit from improved productivity.

- Meanwhile, Cory Doctorow highlights new research showing that the CEOs who manage to squeeze the most money out of businesses actually perform worse than (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: Friday Afternoon Links

Assorted content to end your week.

- Sam Becker discusses the economic harm done by growing inequality, while Alexandra Zeevalkink previews Katharine Round’s upcoming documentary on the issue. And Carol Goar argues that Canadians are eager for leadership to ensure that everybody shares in our country’s wealth.

- Meanwhile, Laura Cattari points out the importance of giving people living in poverty a voice in policy decisions. And Erik Loomis highlights the consequences of failing to do so, as an imbalance in political influence has resulted in U.S. corporations being able to use poor areas both domestic and foreign as (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: Monday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material to start your week.

- Janelle Vandergrift reminds us that we should see ourselves as participating citizens, not mere taxpayers: Taxes are a way to pool our resources and develop common infrastructure that can have a positive impact on us all. They build our roads and bridges, pay for our police and firefighters, offer support for raising children, provide income security and housing for people who are poor, contribute to foreign aid, and help to ensure our environment is clean and safe. All of these things are much cheaper and effective when we pay for them collectively. The (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: Tuesday Morning Links

This and that for your Tuesday reading.

- LOLGOP discusses the important role unions play in ensuring widespread freedom and prosperity – and why they’re thus target number one for corporatists seeking to hoard more wealth at the top: When Scott Walker promises to bring his anti-union policies that have help lead Wisconsin to the largest decline in the Middle Class of any state nationally, he’s revealing what’s long been the subtext of the conservative movement. Their goal has always been to trick the middle class to vote itself out of existence, and this requires turning workers against backbone (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: Sunday Afternoon Links

This and that for your Sunday reading.

- Brad Delong discusses the two strains of neoliberalism which dominate far too much political discussion – and the reason why the left-oriented version doesn’t offer any plausible analysis of where we stand: (Bill) Clintonian left-neoliberalism makes two twin arguments.

The first is addressed to the left: it is that market mechanisms–properly-regulated market mechanisms–are more likely than not a better road to social democratic ends than command-and-control mechanisms.

The second is addressed to the right: it is that social democracy is the only political system that can in the long run underpin a (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: Saturday Morning Links

Assorted content for your weekend reading.

- Canadians for Tax Fairness offers a checklist to allow us to determine whether the federal budget is aimed at improving matters for everybody, or only for the privileged few. And Andrew Jackson argues that the Cons’ focus should be investment in jobs and sustainable development: Business investment is likely to fall even further due to the resource slump and halted mega projects. This might be offset a bit by new investment in the hard-hit manufacturing sector and in high tech, though there is no sign of that in the most recent numbers.

In (Read more…)