Friday, September 13, 2019

Friday Morning Links

Assorted content to end your week.

- Richard Wilkinson, Kate Pickett and Wanda Wyporska neatly summarize the insidious social effects of inequality:
(I)nequality is socially divisive, making status more important and strengthening the view that some people are worth more than others.

As we judge each other more by status, we fear more how we are judged. Status anxieties increase in all income groups, intensifying attempts to enhance appearances of personal worth – including through status consumption. Heightened social comparisons increase stress and doubts about self-worth, with consequences for health, violence, bullying, children’s educational performance, and addictions. And rather than increasing initiative and creativity, a large recent analysis showed that inequality makes societies less inventive, producing fewer patents per head of population. Falling well beyond the boundaries of economics, inequality’s effects now demand interdisciplinary research and political action.
- Meanwhile, Bob Ascah, Trevor Harrison and Richard Mueller discuss how Alberta can avoid what's already an overstated complaint about deficits and debt (to say nothing of the austerity which Jason Kenney plans to inflict as a "cure") merely by taking in public revenue remotely comparable to every other Canadian province.

- Michael Mann offers a reminder that we need a systemic transition in order to rein in catastrophic climate change. And Adele Peters writes that clean energy has already reached the point of being more affordable than fossil fuel alternatives such as natural gas - as long as the latter aren't receiving massive subsidies.

- Andrea Ledding reports on the exploitative and poorly-regulated logging industry which is threatening Saskatchewan's forests along with residents.

- Finally, Rob Carrick writes that Canada's housing policy needs to focus on making rental space available, rather than further driving up prices for would-be home buyers.

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