Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Tuesday Morning Links

This and that for your Tuesday reading.

- Keith Stewart writes about the determination of the oil industry to push people to vote for environmental destruction. But as an alternative, Ann Pettifor highlights the important economic and environmental progress on offer through the Green New Deal:
The Green New Deal demands major structural (governmental and inter-governmental) changes (not just behavioural change) in our approach to the ecosystem. In addition, and as in the 1930s, such change to be driven by radical structural transformation of the finance sector, and the economy. It was developed on the understanding that finance, the economy and the ecosystem are all tightly bound together. Protecting and restoring the ecosystem to balance cannot be tackled effectively without transformation of the other sectors. Financing the transformation of the economy away from its dependence on fossil fuels cannot be achieved without a transformation of the finance sector.
Its ambition is on a much grander scale than Roosevelt’s 1930s New Deal. (Recall that his administration also faced an ecological catastrophe: the dust bowl). The climate threats we face are on a scale beyond the imagination of New Dealers. Still we must learn from Roosevelt’s administration. To tackle climate change we need simultaneously to tackle the root cause of growing toxic emissions: a self-regulating, globalised financial system that injects exponential supplies of unregulated credit into the hands of speculators and consumers. Credit that is used in turn to inflate the prices of existing assets, and to fuel consumption of the earth’s finite assets extracted via the energy of fossil fuels. Only once we switch off, regulate and moderate the “tap” of “easy money” will it be possible to regulate and “switch off” the toxic emissions of fossil fuels.
- Rebecca Burns comments on the U.S.' much-needed conversation about ensuring the rich pay their fair share. And Jonathan Chait chimes in on the failure of corporate tax slashing to provide any economic benefit.

- Meanwhile, Paul Krugman offers a reminder of the perpetual double standard on deficits and debt - which are always treated as acceptable as long as they're caused by tax cuts for the wealthy. And Robert Reich notes that Donald Trump is happy to bail out the rich while insisting that everybody else fend for themselves.

- Finally, Andrew Coyne points out the Libs' conspicuous refused to directly answer the accumulating issues with their free pass for corporate corruption. And Alex Boutilier and Alex Ballingall report on the tens of millions of dollars in federal contracts being handed out to SNC Lavalin.

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