Thursday, February 02, 2017

Thursday Morning Links

This and that for your Thursday reading.

- Andrew Coyne and Rob Mason each discuss Justin Trudeau's broken promise of a fairer electoral system. Chantal Hebert observes that the commitment itself - however frequently and fervently repeated - looks to have been little more than a cheap campaign prop. And Karl Nerenberg highlights how the Libs sucked in "strategic" voters with a promise they've done nothing but try to avoid keeping, while Ethan Cox places the false hope of electoral reform within a pattern of Lib lies.

- Andre Picard comments on the key issues which need to be addressed in Canadian health care - and particularly the importance of properly defining and funding medically necessary services, rather than letting user fees serve as a barrier to access.

- Carmen Lawrence asks who's really running Australia at a time when government choices seem to be oriented solely toward enriching corporate supporters:
It’s clear Australians are increasingly wary of the power of big business; in the latest post-election survey by researchers at the Australian National University, 74% responded “yes” to the proposition that “big business has too much power”, with 56% (up from the last survey) agreeing that “government is run for a few big interests”.
In the face of frequent revelations about corporate wrongdoing and corruption – including participation in foreign bribery, accelerating levels of tax avoidance and evasion, fraudulent misrepresentation of financial products, systematic underpayment of wages, and environmental vandalism – governments, state and federal, have not responded with robust measures to deter such practices. Nor have they made good use of the powers they already have to take effective action, despite evidence of clear abuses of corporate power.  
- And Sarah Cox raises similar concerns in British Columbia, where the Clark Libs are engaged in a scorched-earth campaign to stifle critics while pushing the controversial (but business-friendly) Site C project to the point where the public can't vote to stop it.

- Finally, Elise Stolte reports on a positive development out of Edmonton's City Council, which has voted to apply a subset clause to private reports to make sure they can be publicly reviewed once information is no longer sensitive.

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