Friday, December 01, 2023

Musical interlude

PVRIS - Things Are Better (Alt Version)

Friday Morning Links

Assorted content to end your week.

- Damian Carrington reports on Antonio Guterres' warning to COP28 that we're already in the midst of a climate collapse. Katelyn Reinhart discusses new research showing how existing climate studies underestimate the effects of extreme heat. And Nicholas Beuret writes about the unequal responsibility between countries and people for the emissions that are putting the planet at risk.

-  But Benjamin Shingler reports on the justified concern that a climate conference has been captured by fossil fuel lobbyists bent on long-term destruction in the name of continued windfall profits. And Markham Hislop notes that Danielle Smith is among the attendees determined to keep carbon pollution spewing for decades to come. 

- Crawford Kilian reviews Chris van Tulleken's Ultra-Processed People, while highlighting how much of what's sold to us as food doesn't deserve the name.

- Nabhan Refaie discusses how an increasing number of people are channeling their frustration and anger with an unfair economic system into union activity and other collective action.

- Finally, Cory Doctorow points out how the loudest debates over artificial intelligence are set up to avoid any discussion of how AI is used primarily to reinforce the wealth and power of those who already have the most. 

Thursday, November 30, 2023

Thursday Afternoon Links

This and that for your Thursday reading.

- Mark Sumner discusses the World Health Network's recognition that the damage from COVID-19 includes harm to people's immune systems which has made the effect of other diseases more severe. 

- Patrick Metzger examines how the climate crisis is accelerating faster than anticipated. And George Monbiot calls out the billionaires using their wealth and power to push for continued (and even increased) carbon pollution, while Kevin Anderson notes that any path to avoiding a climate breakdown requires an immediate and profound shift in productive capacity toward both cleaner energy and more equal allocation of resources. 

- Meanwhile, Bill McKibben points out how petrostates are using what's supposed to be a climate action conference to make deals to exacerbate our dependence on fossil fuels. And Graham Thomson discusses how Danielle Smith is using yet another set of laughable promises about carbon capture and storage (along with wilful blindness toward end-user emissions) to try to lock in decades of fossil fuel extraction

- Lisa Young calls out Smith and Scott Moe for pantomiming civil disobedience in their effort to serve their corporate masters. And David Fraser reports on the newly-revealed text messages showing that both Brad Wall and Saskatchewan Party MLA Hugh Nerlien were actively involved in advising and supporting the #FluTruxKlan. 

- Finally, Jeremy Simes reports that breast cancer screening is just the latest area where the Sask Party is choosing to funnel money to private Alberta operators rather than investing in a functional health care system in Saskatchewan. 

Wednesday, November 29, 2023

Wednesday Afternoon Links

Miscellaneous material for your mid-week reading.

- The Canadian Press reports on Statistics Canada's findings that Canadian life spans have fallen for three years in a row - with Saskatchewan continuing to face the most extreme decline. And Codi Wilson reports on Toronto's closure of its remaining COVID-19 vaccination clinics due to the Ford government's decision to stop funding prevention of avoidable transmission and illness. 

- Norm Farrell discusses how the push to expand liquid gas production may be the most dangerous fossil fuel plan in the world, while Oliver Milman writes about the U.S.' expansion of fossil fuel extraction while the world tries to work on a phaseout. Markham Hislop calls out Danielle Smith's enshittification of energy policy as a means of stalling any transition to clean energy. And Cory Doctorow points out that insurance companies are exacerbating the climate breakdown by funding oil and gas extraction while constraining public mitigation and remediation efforts. 

- Chip Colwell offers a reminder that individual-level behaviour can only accomplish so much in a system designed to encourage consumerism and waste. But David Danelski notes that one all-too-familiar form of corporate manipulation appears to be backfiring, as payment for "sponsored" product positioning in search results produces a justified aversion among users.  

- Meanwhile, Merissa Daborn writes that we should be ensuring that people have access to the necessities of life including food, rather than focusing on policing and punishing people who lack them. 

- Finally, Amanda Marcotte discusses why it's entirely healthy that so many U.S. women expect more for themselves than to settle for a MAGA reactionary in order to get married. 

Monday, November 27, 2023

Monday Afternoon Links

Miscellaneous material to start your week.

- Andrew Nikiforuk discusses the 10 inescapable laws of pandemics - and the grim future they portend in light of our pitiful response to the social challenges posed by COVID-19. And Jessica Wildfire writes that the effects of repeated COVID infections on people's immune systems will reverberate for decades to come. 

- Lucas Henneman writes about new research showing that pollution from coal-fired electricity produces even more health problems than previously identified.  

- Lynn Boylan and Alma Dufour point out that Amazon is a massive cause of carbon emissions and avoidable waste - even as it tries to greenwash its operations through selective reporting and PR. Oliver Griffin reports on the targeted killings of environmentalists in Colombia and elsewhere by corporate forces determined to destroy anything and anybody who might call attention to their destruction. And Radio Ecoshock discusses the fossil fuel sector's plan to wreck the Earth's atmosphere, while Leyland Cecco reports on Canada's worsening contribution to carbon pollution as oil companies ramp up production in the midst of a climate crisis. 

- Michelle Cyca writes about the reality that real estate windfalls represent a massive source of unearned wealth - as well as an opportunity for cynical politicians to divide the working class based on homeownership. And Max Fawcett highlights how the Canadian Taxpayers Federation is entirely a political tool of right-wing parties, rather than a remotely principled critic of unconscionable waste when it emanates from the likes of Danielle Smith. 

- Paul Wells discusses how Pierre Poilievre has paired Stephen Harper's contempt for accountability with the antisocial buffoonery of the Joker, while Deveryn Ross calls out Poilievre's combination of serial lying and determination to foment fear and hate. And the Economist writes about the appalling rise of Geert Wilders' party - including through the normalization of bigotry by "mainstream" parties.