Thursday, February 12, 2015

Thursday Morning Links

This and that for your Thursday reading.

- Elias Isquith interviews Mark Blyth about his book on the disastrous consequences of austerity, while Paul Krugman writes that austerity is particularly sure to cause economic destruction when combined with a push toward consumer deleveraging. And Bruce Campbell looks to Syriza as an example of how people have real political choices - even when parties try to tell them otherwise out of either corporate ideology or fear.

- CBC reports on Generation Squeeze's study showing the need for greater social spending to support young Canadians.

- But Angella MacEwen is rightly concerned that the Cons are instead (at least nominally) putting employment policy in the hands of someone whose stubborn refusal to let government play a positive role for citizens stands out even by Con MP standards.

- Finally, Ed Broadbent and Roy Romanow argue that our elected representatives need to defeat the Cons' terror bill:
CSIS has now been given powers to engage in the active disruption of activities that it believes threaten the security of Canada, a power that was once illegally exercised by the RCMP and which led to the creation of CSIS with the mandate to focuso exclusively n intelligence gathering – not to engage in activities that often would otherwise be illegal. As the recent unfortunate history of intelligence agencies in the United States and Britain shows, we should be wary of this expanded mandate for our country’s intelligence arm.
Terrorism is a threat throughout the world, including Canada. We cannot adopt a passive attitude toward it. We must invest in discovering terrorist threats and in stopping them. But national security also means defending our democracy, and that depends on holding the loyalty of citizens and maintaining their confidence in a just and stable government. This requires tolerance for diverse opinions, respect for personal integrity and timely and effective accountability for governmental conduct, including security operations. Shortchanging these will only weaken our strength as a nation – and our security.
And Stephen Lautens duly mocks Stephen Harper's apparent belief that he's defending Canada against the Loch Ness Monster from his closeted control centre - though I have to wonder whether Harper merely mistook "fear" for "fish" among the two leading types of mongering.

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