Thursday, November 01, 2018

Thursday Morning Links

This and that for your Thursday reading.

- Chuck Collins discusses the obscene wealth being hoarded by the U.S.' few richest families. And Owen Jones comments on the need for UK Labour to plan to push for far more revenue - especially from the top end - than it's proposed so far.

- Meanwhile, Jim Stanford writes about the importance of addressing inequality through the labour market:
Fixing this problem requires an ambitious, multidimensional effort to rebuild the policy levers of inclusive growth. Minimum wages should be high enough that anyone working full-time can escape poverty. Supplemental measures like penalty rates and casual loading should be strengthened, not eroded. The award system should again aim to support wage growth for all workers, not just those at the bottom.

Relaxing Australia’s unique and punitive restrictions on collective bargaining and allowing workers to negotiate multi-firm or industry-wide agreements would also lift wages across the board. Instead of being vilified and persecuted, unions should be accepted and supported as an essential and constructive part of a normal labour market.

Unionists and social advocates are now forcefully prosecuting the argument to “change the rules” of Australia’s labour market. This will be one of the top issues in the run-up to the next federal election. And this debate is long overdue – because tackling inequality has to start in the labour market.
- Ben Parfitt exposes how British Columbia's Environmental Assessment Office makes a habit of offering corporations secret deals to bypass any scrutiny of hazardous projects, and calls for proper review processes which actually allow the public to have a say.

- And the Price of Oil project reveals that the Alberta Energy Regulator has developed but concealed studies showing that cleaning up the tar sands would cost an estimated $260 billion - more than four times what the public has been told before.

- Emily Eaton points out that in order to rein in climate breakdown, we need to make a rapid transition to clean energy - not merely put a modest price on small-scale fuel purchases. And Robert Jones reports that the Trudeau Libs are actually facilitating the continued use of the dirtiest power sources through their industrial exemptions from carbon pricing.

- Finally, Stephen Tweedale discusses the problems with any attempt to use Karl Popper's philosophy as a defence of first-past-the-post politics.

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