Saturday, August 27, 2022

Saturday Afternoon Links

Assorted content for your weekend reading.

- Carolyn Johnson discusses how one's initial development of an immune response to COVID may affect the impact of future vaccinations. Kim Constantino reports on a finding from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics that long COVID is responsible for a third of the U.S.' total number of job vacancies. Bronwyn Bragg offers her account of the impossible choices facing parents of young children who haven't had access to protection from vaccines at all. And Bruce Arthur discusses Ontario's imminent shutdown of its COVID science table as an example of obvious disregard for public health which is breaking down public trust.

- Tammy Robert goes in depth as to the Saskatchewan Party's choice to underfund health care in Saskatchewan, while the Globe and Mail's editorial board is rightly aghast at Scott Moe's choice to use a fiscal windfall to bribe voters rather than to make any effort to repair the damage. And Jeremy Simes reports on the grim circumstances facing Saskatchewan's health care workers based on both a lack of resources and the cultivation of anti-science violence.

- Brian Sullivan offers a look at what's happening to the former waterways being destroyed by our climate breakdown. And Damian Carrington asks how long we'll abide a fossil fuel sector which has proven itself determined to destroy our planet in the name of short-term profits, while Ainslie Cruickshank exposes how industry-sponsored curricula are being used to indoctrinate children to serve the interests of oil and gas tycoons.

- Thom Hartmann discusses how the wealthiest few have a stranglehold on U.S. politics, while Zachary Carter points out that the current debate over partial student loan forgiveness is really an issue of whether workers are to have any control over their own destiny in a social order designed to serve their exploiters.

- Finally, Ira Wells discusses how instability in the U.S. represents a direct threat to Canada. And Rachel Gilmore takes a look at the cross-border Diagolon movement - seen as too valuable to Pierre Poilievre for him to speak a word against it - which has been actively seeking the violent undermining and overthrow of elected governments.

Friday, August 26, 2022

Musical interlude

Gorgon City w/ Hayden James & Nat Dunn - Foolproof

Friday Morning Links

Assorted content to end your week.

- Maggie O'Farrell offers her experience as to the devastating effects of long COVID. And Jose Manuel Aburto et al. study the particularly insidious impact of COVID on minority racial and ethnic populations in the U.S. 

- Meanwhile, Dayne Patterson reports on the call from Saskatchewan doctors for people to be more responsible than their government in masking up to protect each other. And Kelly Skjerven reports on Joel Hill's work mapping out the service disruptions in Saskatchewan's health care system. 

- Zak Vescera reports that one of the schools at the centre of the Saskatchewan Party's child abuse scandal has been shut down only after refusing to cooperate with an outside administrator. And Russel Wangersky rightly calls out the Moe government for doing nothing other than shrieking about the federal government while its own areas of responsibility grow increasingly dire. 

- Saurav Sarkak offers a hopeful story on how Punjabi workers in Toronto are joining together to fight back against wage theft and employer abuses. 

- Finally, Umair Haque discusses what will be needed to survive an age of dystopia - with community-building and the recognition of priorities larger than one's self not ranking at the top of the list. 

Thursday, August 25, 2022

Thursday Afternoon Links

This and that for your Thursday reading.

- Linda McQuaig writes about the dangers of treating public health care systems as resources to be plundered by corporate raiders rather than essential services for people. And John Michael McGrath discusses how the Ford PCs are demanding that some of the most vulnerable patients in Ontario sacrifice  to hide the damage they've done to health care (while refusing to allow that imposition to be subject to normal legislative accountability).  

- Katie Bach highlights the tens of millions of Americans suffering from long COVID, including millions unable to work as a result of it. 

- James Temple points out the flaws in "net zero" climate plans which are intended to maximize continued corporate pollution as long as possible based on questionable assumptions about offsets and scopes of responsibility. And Hanna Hett asks whether Canada is prepared to accept the climate refugees losing their homes as a result of the carbon pollution which we continue to subsidize and promote around the globe. 

- Michelle Gamage discusses the massive amount of food waste generated in Canada - and the source of that waste in a system which makes it cheaper and easier to discard food than to find a use for it. 

- Jared Brock writes about the need to apply fair taxes to ensure that parasitic extractors at least have to contribute something to the common good. 

- Finally, Max Fawcett discusses Pierre Poilievre's choice to operate in league with Diagolon extremists and other elements of the violent right-wing fringe. 

Wednesday, August 24, 2022

Wednesday Afternoon Links

Miscellaneous material for your mid-week reading.

- Ben Beckett interviews Max Desbris about the role a climate breakdown plays in exacerbating natural disasters, while Grace Livingstone and Ellen Tsang report on thousands of indigenous islanders in Panama who have lost their home and community to the environmental disruptions we've seen so far. Leslie Hook and Chris Campbell write about the dangerous and unexplained surge in methane levels which is increasing the pace of global warming. Mia Rabson reports on the hydrogen supply agreement between Canada and Germany - including the firm recognition by a country facing short-term supply issues that fossil-fuel-based energy isn't a viable option, even as the Trudeau Libs try to keep money flowing to the oil patch. And Chantal Hebert discusses how the Cons' leadership contenders are looking to make Canada's already confused and ineffective climate policy even worse. 

- Meanwhile, Crawford Kilian reviews Serhii Plokhy’s Atoms and Ashes as an important reminder that nuclear "accidents" are both entirely predictable and caused in part by deliberate choices. 

- Jessica Corbett discusses how profiteering by grain giants is a classic example of disaster capitalism. 

- Jose Jimenez et al. study the historical reasons explaining the deadly resistance to accepting that COVID-19 is airborne. And Science Daily reports on new research showing a connection between increased blood clotting and long COVID. 

- Finally, John Smith writes about the opportunity lost when Jeremy Corbyn's leadership - with its potential to offer hope to massive numbers of otherwise disenfranchised people - was undermined by establishment resistance (including within his own party).

Tuesday, August 23, 2022

Tuesday Night Cat Blogging

Cats on the ball.

Tuesday Afternoon Links

This and that for your Tuesday reading.

- Jonny Thomson writes about the philosophy of "lagom" as an alternative to perpetually demanding more. But Matt Gurney notes that on a rapidaly warming planet, the former luxury of air conditioning is becoming a necessity for far more people - even if that fact isn't reflected in policy. 

- Adam King discusses how class struggle is on the rise - particularly in the sense of workers fighting back against the exploitation taken as a given by employers. And Jim Stanford warns us not to be taken in by spin seeking to justify increased inequality and suppressing benefits for workers in the name of fighting inflation. 

- Shawn Micallef calls out the City of Toronto for raiding homeless people without having any plan to provide alternative acceptable accommodations. And Elizabeth Mulholland points out the need to start treating poverty and income insecurity as serious public policy problems which demand action. 

- Fiona Harvey writes that the world's largest grain traders are predictably among the corporate interests raking in massive profits by hiking prices - making them a likely source of substantial revenue from any windfall profit tax. And Geoff Dembicki calls out Pierre Poilievre for falsely blaming revenue-neutral carbon levies rather than oil industry profiteering for out-of-control gas prices. 

- Finally, Luke LeBrun discusses how Poilievre refuses to name or disassociate himself from Jeremy McKenzie and associated violent extremists - choosing instead to criticize the media for pointing out how he's allying himself with racism and hate. 

Monday, August 22, 2022

Monday Afternoon Links

Miscellaneous material to start your week.

- Eric Topol examines the growing body of knowledge about long COVID - and the need to use that awareness to develop the means to mitigate it. Lola Mayor reports on the example of one 10-year-old struggling to walk and talk as a horrifying example of the effects of a disease treated as "mild", while Jenny Jin et al. find that COVID appears to transmit in utero and stay in a fetus' body. And Adina Bresge examines the considerations for Canadians deciding whether to wait for new vaccines targeted toward Omicron - including the warning from Dr. Theresa Tam not to wait too long since a previous vaccination. 

- Akshay Kulkarni reports on the increase in sick leave among British Columbia nurses since the start of the pandemic. Emma Teitel discusses how the exodus of nurses from public health care settings can be traced to a lack of respect and fair wages. And Anne Helen Peterson rightly challenges the phrasing of "quiet quitting" to describe workers who do their jobs rather than sacrificing their own interests for the benefit of their employer. 

- David Sligar examines the importance of taking into account household composition in setting the terms of income-linked policies. And PROOF studies (PDF) the prevalence of food insecurity among Canadian families - with Alberta and Saskatchewan ranking among the provinces with the highest rates of hunger and associated problems. 

- Finally, Ian Welsh writes about the multiple factors creating immense social problems - even as the leaders with the theoretical authority to respond are increasingly selected solely for power accumulation rather than any ability to act in the public interest. 

On jurisdictional issues

Shorter Jason Kenney:

For all my Ottawa-bashing bluster, even I have to admit it's asinine to pretend provincial laws can nullify the existence of federal powers. 

Shorter Scott Moe:

The federal government has no jurisdiction to enforce its laws in the Glorious Republic of Lesser Fucktrudeauistan! It's in the Magna Carta!

Meanwhile, as some point out the danger of implicitly encouraging a violent response by individuals, let's note that Moe has also gone far past the UCP in centralizing provincial policing structures as a substantive step toward concentrating force under provincial jurisdiction. (And sadly, the response in Saskatchewan was mostly limited to quibbling over security at the Legislature rather than the broader implications.)