Saturday, September 01, 2018

Saturday Morning Links

Assorted content for your weekend reading.

- Jagmeet Singh observes that much of the festering hate stoked by right-wing parties can be traced back to economic injustice and insecurity:
(I)f we really want to stop hate, we need to do more than just call it out. We need to recognize that it is growing economic inequality that creates the conditions for hate to fester. That’s the reality Andrew Scheer is trying to exploit: the economic injustice that has left so many very hard-working Canadians wondering why they can’t make ends meet, and what — or who — is to blame.

This summer I met a lot of those Canadians, Canadians who Scheer hopes will tune into his message. Workers juggling multiple jobs just to pay the rent and wondering why good quality, long-term work is so hard to find. Families that, every month, are just a few dollars away from not being able to pay their bills. Students grappling with debt and a job market with very little to offer. Seniors having to choose between paying for groceries and the medication they need. Parents struggling to find child care they can afford and rely on. Too many wondering how they’ll ever retire without living in poverty.
There is no excuse for inaction in the face of economic injustice. It’s time to implement real solutions.

Solutions like universal pharmacare, which economists say is more than feasible and will save us billions of dollars. Solutions like universal child care, which we know would more than pay for itself by allowing more parents, especially women, to go to work. Solutions like an immediate federal investment in housing, which we know would make an enormous difference to families struggling to pay skyrocketing rents for substandard accommodations.

We know we can help pay for these and other concrete solutions by finally clamping down on tax loopholes and tax havens, so that everyone in Canada, including the richest, pay their fair share. But Canadians have been waiting too long for that simple and fair fix.
- Thomas Kochan, Duanyi Yang, Erin Kelly and Will Kimball examine the widespread desire among U.S. workers to engage in collective action, even as Republicans go far out of their way to prevent anything of the sort. And Anna Patty reports on new IMF research showing how a labour market distorted in favour of employers is robbing workers of any share in economic development. 

- Cory Coleman reports on Regina's sharp increase in homelessness as a result of Scott Moe's decision to slash housing funding. And Philip Inman discusses how increased land values in the UK are enriching current owners while leaving everybody else behind.

- Finally, Brent Patterson calls out the dishonesty behind the Trudeau Libs' attempt to tie modest climate change policies to the publicly-funded expansion of fossil fuel infrastructure. Peter Tertzakian discusses some of the implications of a world in which clean energy is no longer scarce - though it's worth noting the additional result that investments based on seeking rents from tight markets for oil and other energy will lose any prospective upside. And Guy Dauncey sets out a few of the climate change options which might make a meaningful difference in saving a livable environment.

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