Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Wednesday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material for your mid-week reading.

- Ann Pettifor discusses the trend toward financialization which has led to regular economic disasters - and suggests the public is well aware it's getting left behind in the policy choices which have created it.

- ScienceDaily takes note of the strong connection between education levels and longevity.

- Sarah Jones calls out the U.S. Republicans' constant steps to withhold food from people who need it - including children who have to attend school hungry as a result. And Andrew Sniderman and Vincent Larochelle discuss the unfairness of mandatory surcharges which impose lasting debts on people with no ability to pay them.

- David Suzuki points out the regular occurrence of dangerous oil spills around the world while highlighting the risks of any Trans Mountain expansion. Martin Lukacs writes that it's Indigenous protestors against pipeline expansion who are actually defending the national interest. And Kai Nagata asks for suggestions as to how we could better use $8 billion of public money other than to subsidize a pipeline for the benefit of Enron alumni.

- Finally, Luke Savage comments on the contrast between Justin Trudeau's slogans and his actions while in power:
(I)t is the disparity between Trudeau’s rhetorical posturing and political execution that perhaps best illustrates the essential conservatism of his government. Social investment and Keynesianism, supposedly the defining pillars of Liberal economic strategy, have given way to corporatism and stealth privatisation.

Even as Trudeau performatively condemns corporate elites, his supposed war on inequality has amounted to tinkering with income tax brackets while opposing a $15-an-hour minimum wage for federal workers. The legalisation of marijuana looks increasingly like a cynical revenue-raiser for avaricious former politicians and ex-cops, rather than a deserved reprieve for those criminalised by the previous system. And while Trudeau’s government was talking up feminism and human rights abroad, it was also signing the export permits for $15bn-worth of armoured vehicles – including some labelled “heavy assault” – to Saudi Arabia.

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