Friday, May 11, 2018

Friday Morning Links

Assorted content to end your week.

- Gary Younge comments on the highly selective willingness of far too many privileged people to acknowledge suffering around them. And Paul Krugman calls out the Trump administration's gratuitous cruelty toward the people who already have the least:
There’s something fundamentally obscene about this spectacle. Here we have a man who inherited great wealth, then built a business career largely around duping the gullible — whether they were naïve investors in his business ventures left holding the bag when those ventures went bankrupt, or students who wasted time and money on worthless degrees from Trump University. Yet he’s determined to snatch food from the mouths of the truly desperate, because he’s sure that somehow or other they’re getting away with something, having it too easy.
In the end, I don’t believe there’s any policy justification for the attack on food stamps: It’s not about the incentives, and it’s not about the money. And even the racial animus that traditionally underlies attacks on U.S. social programs has receded partially into the background.

No, this is about petty cruelty turned into a principle of government. It’s about privileged people who look at the less fortunate and don’t think, “There but for the grace of God go I”; they just see a bunch of losers. They don’t want to help the less fortunate; in fact, they get angry at the very idea of public aid that makes those losers a bit less miserable.

And these are the people now running America.
- Meanwhile, CBC News reports on the continuing effects of the Saskatchewan Party's destruction of STC on people with disabilities who relied on it. 

- Sheila Block points out the longstanding gap between what Ontario governments have invested in health care and what's needed to properly care for patients - while noting that voters will have a chance to set the province on the right track in this spring's election.

- Lauren Pelley highlights the barriers to dental care faced by low-income seniors in Toronto - and the resulting social costs. And Ake Blomqvist and Frances Woolley make the case for universal dental coverage.

- Finally, Bob Weber reports on new research showing that the environmental impact of the oil sands is larger than previously known. And Jodi McNeil reminds us that the public will likely end up paying for the mess left behind by oil operators who can't be bothered to keep their promises once any profits run out.

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