Thursday, June 08, 2023

Thursday Morning Links

This and that for your Thursday reading.

- Umair Haque discusses the absurdity (and manufactured idiocy) that results in us continuing with extractive business as usual as we enter a palpable age of extinction. And Richard Eskow writes about the reasons why billionaires can't tolerate the prospect that most people would enjoy even a modicum of security and well-being. 

- Meanwhile, both Dharna Noor and Zeeshan Aleem discuss how the wildfire smoke blanketing the U.S. is just part of the new, broken-down climate we'll be living with thanks to oil barons continuing to dictate our social choices. 

- On that front, Fiona Harvey reports that the fossil fuel peddlers put in charge of the next major global climate talks are refusing to even talk about limiting dirty energy. Carl Meyer exposes how Suncor is being allowed to dictate Canadian federal climate policy (even as the official opposition spends its time complaining that such a thing even exists). And Mark Sweney reports on the UK Advertising Standards Authority's determination that Shell's greenwashing is "likely to mislead" the public about the harm it's causing to our planet.

- Finally, Harvey also reports on new data showing that greenhouse gas emissions continue to reach record highs. And Yvonne Gordon reports on the discovery of microplastics in even the most remote of ocean environments as we continue to use the Earth as a dumping ground.

Wednesday, June 07, 2023

Wednesday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material for your mid-week reading.

- Caitlin Johnstone offers a grim but fair evaluation of the barely-existent left in the U.S. and elsewhere - while recognizing that the obvious implication is the need to build capacity to demand systemic change. And David Suzuki discusses how an obsession with perpetually consuming more stuff - particular when linked to the fetishization of dirty energy sources - produces both personal dissatisfaction and disastrous environmental consequences. 

- Damian Carrington reports on new research which concludes the climate breakdown has reached the point where there's no longer any prospect of saving Arctic ice in the summer (with more extreme weather expected to result from its loss). 

- Aaron Wherry writes that Canada's Parliament is largely fiddling as the country burns, while Greg Pyle discusses how the UCP is determined to make matters even worse in order to keep short-term profits flowing to its oil backers. And Jacob Knutson discusses how Canadian wildfires are resulting in dangerous levels of air pollution in large swaths of the U.S. 

- Mary Vallis offers an explainer on rent strikes as organized tenant resistance is becoming more common in the face of intolerable rent extraction. 

- Finally, Angela Satni explores the roots of patriarchy - along with the anecdotes and debunked theories used to try to present it as an inevitability. And Tandeep Sidhu writes that the militarization of Canadian police is destroying public trust and making everybody less safe. 

Tuesday, June 06, 2023

Tuesday Night Cat Blogging

Floored cats.

Tuesday Afternoon Links

This and that for your Tuesday reading.

- Thom Hartmann offers a reminder of the broad-based growth and social progress which is possible when capitalists are required to pay reasonable tax rates. And conversely, Cory Doctorow examines the utterly destructive practices of private equity - which is being catered to with a business model of taking windfall profits at the expense of workers, infrastructure and business sustainability. 

- Meanwhile, Fiona Harvey reports on new Oxfam research showing how wealthy and polluting countries are trying to profit off the damage wrought through the climate breakdown. Benjamin Shinger reports on the difficulty and complexity people are facing trying to get insurance as insurers account for increasing climate risk. And Francesca Fionda discusses what's needed to ensure the victims of climate disaster have an opportunity to heal and rebuild. 

- Andrew Nikiforuk discusses the lie of "clean" tar sands production, as environmental standards have been regularly degraded and ignored in order to keep money flowing to oil barons. And Joseph Winters points out how we need a massive reduction in our reliance on plastics as part of any effective climate plan. 

- Kyle Bakx reports on Suncor's slashing of 1,500 jobs within days after the UCP bamboozled voters into believing their hold on power could maintain oil jobs. And David Climenhaga writes that it similarly took Danielle Smith no time at all to start undermining any pretense of democracy after securing her own re-election. 

- Finally, Jonathan Montpetit reports on the fundamentalists looking to mimic the U.S.' imposition of extreme religious views through the political system. 

Monday, June 05, 2023

Monday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material to start your week.

- Laura O'Callaghan writes about new research showing how the NHS (like other health systems) is facing staff shortages based in part on the loss of thousands of workers to long COVID. And Mary Van Beusekom discusses a study finding that 40% of foodborne illness outbreaks in the U.S. can be traced back to worker illness. 

- David Spratt writes about new research from James Hansen and others warning that we may be operating based on gross underestimates of both climate sensitivity to changes in temperature and greenhouse gases, and the consequences of failing to reverse the feedback loops already in operation. And Thom Hartmann asks why we're not seeking to hold accountable the fossil fuel industry responsible for defrauding the public and endangering our living environment in order to accumulate short-term profits. 

- Steve Lafleur points out that the only solution to traffic congestion is to make it possible for people to function without constantly needing to drive personal vehicles. And Megan Robinson notes that an increase in greenwashing as part of marketing clothing can't hide the reality that the best way to reduce the environmental impact of what we wear is to ensure that it lasts rather than requiring constant replacement.

- Finally, Andrew Nikiforuk asks how much damage we can expect from another term of the UCP's petrostate populism. But in case anybody is tempted to draw the lesson that there's no alternative but to give into the constant demands of exploitative capital, Cory Doctorow points out that Washington state has offered a valuable example of how a capital gains tax can reduce inequality and fund public services. 

Saturday, June 03, 2023

Saturday Afternoon Links

Assorted content for your weekend reading.

- Beth Mole reports on research showing that U.S. children suffered a spike in brain abscesses after COVID protections were removed - and that the levels continue to be elevated long after everybody has been told not to bother doing anything to avoid the spread of COVID-19. And Nicole Ireland reports on a new study finding that brain inflammation in long COVID patients (accompanied by debilitating symptoms) can linger for months after an initial infection. 

- Seth Borensen writes about the Earth Commission's recognition that our planet is operating at dangerous extremes on nearly every measurable front. And IANS reports on the danger extreme heat and drought pose to the global wheat supply. 

- Damian Carrington reports on belated efforts to stem Turkmenistan's methane "super-emitter" releases - though it's well worth noting how much more other countries need to do in reining in methane emissions as well. And Sarah Miller weighs in on the absurdity of treating carbon capture and storage as the primary option to address carbon pollution, rather than actually reducing the use of fossil fuels in favour of zero-emission alternatives. 

- Meanwhile, Matthew Rosza writes about the harm plastic pollution is doing to our living environment - and the reality that recycling programs billed as a solution are of minimal help at best. 

- Finally, Armine Yalnizyan discusses how the escalation of Toronto's housing crisis can be traced directly to the diversion of tens of thousands of homes to AirBNB and other temporary purposes. 

Friday, June 02, 2023

Wednesday, May 31, 2023

Wednesday Afternoon Links

Miscellaneous material for your mid-week reading.

- Kelly MacNamara writes about the slowing of Antarctic ocean circulation as a calamitous consequence of climate change which is happening far sooner than predicted. And Alex Cooke reports on the state of emergency in Nova Scotia reflecting the immediate impact of extreme weather and unprecedented levels of heat. 

- Meanwhile, Timothy Gardner reports that the U.S.' plans for new nuclear power include the use of bomb-grade uranium - meaning that the dangers of fixating on nuclear energy include the readily foreseeable risk of weapon proliferation. 

- Talmon Joseph Smith and Joe Rennison report on the growing recognition that inflation is primarily the product of a profit-price spiral, with corporations all taking advantage of talk of limited supplies to pad their bottom lines at public expense. 

- Pete Evans reports on the CMHC's warning that household debt now exceeds Canada's entire gross domestic product - meaning that Canadians are in a far more precarious position than even their peers in other corporate-dominated countries. 

- Finally, Jessica Hamzelou reports on the plight of patients who benefited from a brain implant to help warn of epileptic incidents - only to lose the benefit of a valuable medical tool to a corporate shutdown and the failure of anybody to support its continued use.