Friday, March 15, 2024

Musical interlude

Elderbrook & Tourist - Howl

Friday Morning Links

Assorted content to end your week.

- Andrew Phillips offers a reminder that Canada will pay the price for a climate breakdown whether or not it partially prices emissions in the moment - though it's worth noting that even the existing combination of taxes and regulations falls far short of the investments we should be making in transitioning to a clean society (especially when compared to the massive subsidies incentivizing increased fossil fuel extraction). And Aaron Wherry notes that thanks in part to the know-nothingism of the Cons and their oil industry backers, there's very little public awareness of the rebate side of the federal carbon pricing system. 

- Andrew Nikiforuk points out that Danielle Smith is adopting some of the most laughable coal baron talking points on the planet in an attempt to excuse pushing further extraction with no regard for the climate crisis or the need for potable water. 

- David Climenhaga writes about the UCP's plans to assemble a provincial police force under their political control. And Jim Bronskill reports that the bigoted Flu Trux Klan was given primacy over any interest in police safety, as officers weren't warned of active threats to harm police.   

- David Moscrop writes about the immense power accumulated by Loblaws as a provider of everything, and corporate tech giants as the largest monopolists on the planet. And Erica Johnson et al. report on the continued pressure banks are putting on their employees to push financial products which consumers don't want or need. 

- Finally, Susan Riley writes that the prescription drug plan being developed at the federal level represents only a few baby steps toward a full pharmacare program - and wonders whether we'll ever see that latter goal reached. 

Thursday, March 14, 2024

Thursday Afternoon Links

This and that for your Thursday reading.

- Kate Irwin reports on new research showing that dozens of the U.S.' largest corporations are doling out more money to their five top executives than they paid in total federal income tax. And Robert Renger makes the case that windfall gains in British Columbia property values should be taxed to ensure the benefits aren't limited to those already wealthy enough to own land.  

- Seth Borenstein reports on yet another month of record-high temperatures, while Thor Benson notes that the fossil fuel sector's claim to be limiting methane emissions is proving as disingenuous as its other climate messaging. 

- Phillip Meintzer and Alienor Rougeot point out that if the UCP were actually interested in limiting the environmental impact of energy production, it would be focusing on the tar sands rather than selectively undermining renewables, while Jordan Kanygin reports on the lack of any return on massive public giveaways to major oil companies to clean up their own industry's messes. Bob Weber reports on the Alberta Energy Regulator's findings that there's no air of reality to Danielle Smith's attempt to paint renewables as a threat to agriculture or the environment. And Norm Farrell highlights how British Columbia is belatedly recognizing the value of investing in distributed clean energy rather than falling for the promises surrounding megaprojects. 

- Finally, Joel Lexchin highlights the dangers of an opaque financial relationship between big pharma and the health-care providers who can be induced to push its products. And Nicole Brockbank, Angelina King and Lori Ward report on the growing pile of documentation refuting Shoppers Drug Mart's claim not to have a plan to exploit public funding for medication reviews. 

Wednesday, March 13, 2024

Wednesday Afternoon Links

Miscellaneous material for your mid-week reading.

- Melissa Lem and Samantha Green write about the push from the health care community to ensure that fossil fuel companies can't keep deceiving the public about the harm caused by their operations. And John Woodside reports on the majority popular support for a windfall tax on oil companies - even in the provinces where they've entirely captured the political class. 

- Meanwhile, Max Kozlov discusses new research showing that the oil industry's pivot to plastics stands to create a whole new set of harms to people's health. 

- Peter Walker reports on a new study showing that policies supporting low vehicle traffic produce immense fiscal and health benefits. And for anybody needing an additional push away from car culture, Kashmir Hill exposes how auto manufacturers are tracking and sharing details about drivers' activity with data brokers.  

- Ricardo Tranjan writes about the effectiveness of rent controls in reducing housing costs - while refuting the myth that they do anything to limit the supply of homes. 

- Finally, Kate Schneider reports on the private parties being held in millionaires' mansions to facilitate  Pierre Poilievre's pay-for-access fund-raisers. 

Tuesday, March 12, 2024

Tuesday Night Cat Blogging

Sprawled cat.

Tuesday Morning Links

This and that for your Tuesday reading.

- Brishti Basu reports on the ill effects of WorkSafeBC's decision to push people back to work while they continue to suffer from long COVID. And Alex Skopic calls out the CDC's choice to direct people back to work while they're still infected with COVID-19, while Reina Sultan talks to experts who point out the obvious and avoidable risks to others including workers and customers arising from that guideline. 

- Anita Hofschneider writes about the looming prospect that the effects of a climate breakdown will include the exposure of nuclear waste. And Mari Yamaguchi reports that 13 years after the Fukushima nuclear disaster, authorities still have little idea of the condition of the damaged reactors or the status of the fuel waiting inside. 

- Meanwhile, Joseph Winters reports on the push to ban detergent pods due to their propensity to release microplastics into the environment - as well as the reality that the problem with microplastics generated by clothing goes far deeper. 

- Mouhamad Rachini discusses how teachers across Canada are barely getting by (while administrators have put more and more unqualified babysitters in charge of children as a substitute for providing adequate education resources). And Megan Ogilvie highlights how Ontario has been driving family doctors out of the profession while funneling money toward impersonal corporate substitutes. 

- Finally, Paul Willcocks rightly questions why a supposedly austerian Vancouver mayor and council are funneling tens of millions of dollars to a single private school. Jennifer Lee reports on the $97 million price tag to reverse the effects of the UCP's ideological decision to push lab services into the corporate sector. And Adam King points out the much higher cost of Doug Ford's attempt to suppress public-sector wages. 

Monday, March 11, 2024

Monday Afternoon Links

Miscellaneous material to start your week.

- Bill McGuire discusses why anybody with an understanding of climate science is terrified of a living environment that's careening out of control. Carbon Brief notes that there's plenty of public support for meaningful climate action. But Andre Mayer observes that while the wealthiest and most powerful people are using their outsized influence to make matters worse, they're also spending large amount of money trying to insulate themselves from the consequences of a disastrous future.  

- Ajit Niranjan reports on new research showing how the oil industry has been systematically undermining clean energy for over a half a century. And Aaron Regunberg and David Arkush write that there's a compelling case to prosecute fossil fuel companies for homicide as a result. 

- Meanwhile, Elizabeth Chuck reports on new research showing widespread harm caused by exposure to leaded gasoline. And Drew Anderson points out how fracking is a major contributor to Alberta's looming water crisis. 

- Gleb Tsipursky discusses how return-to-office mandates are all about employer control (with no consideration for anybody's well-being or even productivity). And Ashlie Stevens highlights how Kellogg's and other corporate food producers are rightly getting called out for greedflation to line their own pockets while consumers' expenses spiral out of control. 

- Taylor Noakes writes that Brian Mulroney's death should serve as reason to remember how he imposed corporate control at every turn - not to paper over the damage. And Michael Sainato reports on the growing push by U.S.' corporate overlords to outlaw any labour organizing and collective action which might create a check on their power.  

- Finally, David Moscrop discusses the growing movement for a global weath tax on billionaires.