Tuesday, January 26, 2021

Tuesday Morning Links

This and that for your Tuesday reading.

- Simon Enoch traces the COVID-19 spending that's taken place in Saskatchewan - finding that most of the support has come from the federal government, while Scott Moe has combined a refusal to lift a finger (and indeed a failure to make use of all the federal money available) with constant complaining that the feds aren't doing enough:

(T)hroughout the pandemic, the Saskatchewan government has been quick to tout the state of its finances, in spite of the crisis, reporting lower deficits than anticipated and continuing to commit to a balanced budget by the 2024 election.

The irony is, that for all the ire that Mr. Moe directs at Prime Minister Trudeau, it may very well be the largesse of the federal government, coupled with the underspending of transferred dollars, that has allowed Saskatchewan to post such rosy fiscal numbers.

While in any other situation such news might be greeted by some as evidence of fiscal responsibility, during the worst public health crisis in 100 years, failure to spend and access every available dollar to protect us from the ravages of this pandemic looks a lot less like financial caution and a lot more like callous recklessness.

- Justine Hunter and Ian Bailey report on British Columbia's vaccine distribution plan - showing that it's possible to actually do the work of helping to keep people healthy, rather than devoting one's sole efforts to whining about the federal government. And Gary Mason notes that B.C. has also managed to get caught up on its surgical backlog.

- Robert Reich writes that the threats to U.S. democracy aren't limited to the Trumpist white supremacist uprising, but include corporate sedition aiming to capture the government for the benefits of the wealthiest few.

- Finally, Mitchell Anderson points out that Canada is home to a similarly dangerous set of violent actors who are often encouraged by our right-wing parties, while Matthew Remski documents the spread of Qanon in particular. And Geoff Dembicki notes that the work product from Alberta's anti-environment inquiry includes a smear campaign against journalists funded out of public money.

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