Sunday, November 25, 2018

Sunday Afternoon Links

This and that for your Sunday reading.

- Crawford Kilian reviews Christo Aivalis' The Constant Liberal, and discusses how Justin Trudeau is continuing a family tradition of betraying progressive voters:
[Pierre Trudeau] wanted to strengthen unions and workers in general — up to a point. It wasn’t to help the workers; it was to use them “instrumentally,” to rescue liberalism from the dead end of the Duplessistes and right-wing Liberals and Progressive Conservatives in the rest of Canada. Otherwise, labour would move left again, back to its 1930s socialism.
Trudeau mocked Tory leader Robert Stanfield’s promise of wage and price controls in a time of soaring inflation, won the election with working-class votes, and promptly brought in wage and price controls. Labour and the NDP were furious because they’d been led to hope for “tripartism,” whereby workers, corporations, and the government would be equal partners. Instead, Trudeau cast unions as the greedy drivers of inflation and locked down their wages while the corporations found loopholes. Worse yet, the Charter was adopted without any guarantees of social or labour rights. 
Aivalis finds Justin Trudeau very much like his father: politically able to “hamstring” the NDP by attracting left-wing voters and then disappointing them by reneging on his promises (proportional voting) and taking labour-hostile measures (legislating an end to the postal workers’ strike).

“Ultimately,” he concludes, if it truly is ‘like father, like son,’ Canadians on the left might be wise to prepare for years, if not a generation, of deep disappointment.”
- Kerensa Cadenas points out how the U.S.' National Climate Assessment confirms that climate denialism only stands to be a drag on economic development in the long run. Jeff Lewis, Jeffrey Jones, Chen Wang and Renata D'Alesio report on the financial and environmental mess being made of Alberta's oil patch as the oil industry tries to simultaneously extract short-term profits and offload long-term responsibility. And Regan Boychuk comments on the massive cleanup costs likely to be left for the province after the oil barons have cleared any liabilities off their books.

- Meanwhile, Martin Regg Cohn discusses how Ontario's environment stands to suffer from the Ford Cons' plans to place any watchdog function in the hands of an auditor general's office which both isn't equipped for the job, and has been inexplicably cavalier toward environmental actions in the past. And Christen Shepherd comments on the elimination of Ontario's child advocate who served as a desperately-needed source of hope for vulnerable children.

- And in case there was any doubt how little interest Ford's government has in ensuring that any oversight is effective or unbiased, Rob Ferguson reports on directions from Ford's chief of staff to use law enforcement to raid cannabis stores in order to generate photo ops.

- Finally, Lori Culbert and Dan Fumano report on the failure of one of the B.C. Libs' private housing projects. And the Canadian Press reports that rather than following the same model, the Horgan government is providing direct funding for 1,100 homes for Indigenous residents.