Posts from our progressive community

Fake counseling for a fake condition

Rusty Idols - il y a 5 heures 33 min

Seen on a Calgary c-train.

Project Rachel is a Catholic  anti-abortion group offering fundamentalist Christian guilt and shame based counseling to deal with the shame they promote.


 Actual Project Rachel counseling sessions may not be exactly as portrayed - but probably not by much.

Many anti-abortion activists insist there are proven, profound emotional and psychological effects from having an abortion -- a so-called post-abortion syndrome. One outgrowth has been religiously affiliated retreats such Project Rachel, aimed at helping to purge guilt. Others say the syndrome is non-existent and just a new way to push the "pro-life" agenda, and that most women live productive, psychologically and emotionally normal lives after an abortion."Like so called Crisis Pregnancy Centres they downplay their fundamentalist religious basis. Fake clinics, fake psychological condition and fake counseling.

The women who fall into their clutches are cajoled into admitting their guilt and writing apology letters to their aborted fetus. The whole process is designed to use guilt and shame to create the symptoms of the syndrome they have made up.

I do not dismiss that some women might need counseling after an abortion - for the guilt and shame people like this promote. I just think they should get REAL counseling, not fake guilt and sin based counseling designed to create and exacerbate trauma not ease it.sdnxry5z7g

Friday Afternoon Links

accidentaldeliberations - il y a 5 heures 52 min
Assorted content for your long weekend reading.

- Marc Jarsulic, Ethan Gurwitz, Kate Bahn and Andy Green comment on how corporate monopoly power and rent-seeking produce disastrous public consequences:
Income inequality is rising, middle-class incomes are stagnant, and much of the current economic policy debate is centered on finding ways to counter these trends. A renewed focus on antitrust enforcement could make a significant contribution toward accomplishing this goal.

When firms with dominant market power are able to elevate the prices they charge and earn supra-normal returns—which are economic rents—they simultaneously lower the real incomes of those who buy from them. In other words: The seller benefits when market power elevates the price of hospital care or raises the price of an airline ticket, but the buyer has less income for other needs. Moreover, the tendency of monopolies to restrict output combined with reduced competitive pressure to invest can translate into reduced employment.
...
(T)here is systematic evidence—ranging from the disconnect of corporate profits and corporate investment to evidence of persistent supra-normal profitability—that points to an increase in rent extraction in the U.S. economy. And while large rent extraction is a primary outcome of unchallenged market power, there are additional and equally undesirable results. For example, the entry of new firms in the market can be blocked; innovation can be stifled; product quality can be degraded; the prices paid to workers and suppliers can be reduced; and influence with government officials can be increased. - And as part of the CCPA's Monitor issue on the state of Canada's media, Fenwick McKelvey examines the need to make a diverse range of content available rather than allowing large providers to fully define and limit which options can easily be discovered.

- Paul Willcocks points out there's no evidence-based reason for concern that a higher minimum wage will affect the availability of jobs. And PressProgress notes that the corporate interests trying to shout down any improvements to the minimum wage are the same ones trying to use exploitative immigration schemes to lower wages for all workers.

- Michael Laxer highlights how the manufactured problems at Canada Post - with consistent profits deemed insufficient without explanation in order to attack working conditions, and plans for a postal bank which would both raise profits and provide an important public service given short shrift - are only part of the wider hostility against the public sector. 

- Finally, the International Civil Liberties Monitoring Group sets out the gross deficiencies in the Libs' plans for a security review committee even from the standpoint of basic oversight - to say nothing of the underlying lack of action to protect civil rights from a pervasive surveillance state.

Get Your Spy On : Bill C-22

Creekside - il y a 7 heures 56 min

International Civil Liberties Monitoring Group : OUR ANALYSIS OF C-22: AN INADEQUATE AND WORRISOME BILL
"The Liberal government has recently tabled Bill C-22, the National Security and Intelligence Committee of Parliamentarians Act, in order to create the long-awaited committee to look over Canada’s national security activities."
Andrew Mitrovica : National security oversight woefully inadequate
"Ralph Goodale's heralded National Security and Intelligence Committee is not robust, independent and meaningful but merely enshrines the lousy status quo into law."Craig Forcese makes many of the same points - Knee Jerk First Reaction - on the bill designed to deliver parliamentary oversight to CSIS, CSEC, RCMP amid 20 other members of our national security agencies, but nonetheless gives Bill C-22 a "high pass".

The committee will consist of seven MPs and two senators, all appointed on the recommendation of the PM. I'm guessing the more stringent security clearance they will need to undergo has something to do with Harper having appointed Arthur Porter to SIRC, the watchdog committee overseeing CSIS.

And yes, CSE really is following 34 people on twitter. I imagine they're also on The Book of Faces. ;-)
.

Anyone Who Refuses To Connect The Dots Here

Politics and its Discontents - il y a 11 heures 8 sec
... will never accept the fact of climate change:



Want more information on the dangers posed by algae blooms? Click here.

And just remember, sports fans, these are only the preliminary rounds.

Oh, and by the way, Happy Canada Day.Recommend this Post

mississauga library workers vote overwhelmingly to strike

we move to canada - il y a 11 heures 38 min
Yesterday, the members of CUPE Local 1989, Mississauga Library Workers Union, voted overwhelmingly to strike.

Amid massive turnout in three separate meetings, 96% of the members in attendance said they are willing to take strike action in order to win a fair contract for all members. The July 4th strike deadline coincides with the start of summer programming, the Library's busiest time.

We, the members of Local 1989, love our jobs. We are very proud of the quality services we provide to the community. We are skilled workers, and our services are valued and loved by the residents of Mississauga. We ask only to be treated with respect, and for all our members to be able to provide a decent life for themselves and their families.

Our Library Pages -- the people who put the books on shelves -- deserve a living wage. Currently they earn only pennies above minimum wage, putting them well below the poverty line. Most are adults who support families!

Our part-time workers -- 56% of our membership and growing -- deserve paid sick time, at the very least. They current have no benefits, no paid sick time, no paid bereavement leave, no paid vacation. They have nothing but a constantly changing schedule that prevents them holding down a second job, yet offers only 12-16 hours a week, often less. Their contracts are the very definition of precarious work.

Our full-time and part-time workers received a 0.5% salary adjustment in 2014, and the same in 2015 -- 1% over two years! With the cost of living increasing by about 1.8% annually, we are falling farther and farther behind. Meanwhile, Library Director Rose Vespa enjoyed a healthy 7.36% increase. City Manager Janice Baker earns more than a quarter-million dollars per year. But Mississauga Library Workers are being told to make do with a 1.5% increase. When we point out that we received only 1% over two years, we are told, "That's in the past."

Commissioner of Community Services Paul Mitcham and City Manager Baker regularly message City employees, telling us about all the wonderful things happening in Mississauga, and how much they value our hard work and dedication. For Library workers, these messages are a sad joke, serving only as a reminder of the huge gap between the City's self-image, and the reality of being a City of Mississauga employee.

When Mayor Bonnie Crombie talks about reducing poverty in Mississauga, we wonder why 28% of our membership is paid poverty wages, and why the City is staffed increasingly by part-time, precarious workers, with staffing levels stretched to the breaking point.

The members of CUPE Local 1989 challenge the City of Mississauga to set the standard for employment in our city. It can start by treating its library workers with fairness and respect.

How You Can Help

More information about our issues is below. HOW YOU CAN HELP:

Follow us on Twitter and retweet us!
@cupe1989

Like us on Facebook!
Facebook.com/cupe1989

Call or email Mississauga Mayor Bonnie Crombie! Tell her you support library workers and want Mississauga to treat them with fairness and respect.
mayor@mississauga.ca
905-896-5555

Reach out to your own communities and ask them to do all of the above!

Join us on the picket lines!

If the City of Mississauga does not offer us a better deal by Monday, July 4, we will be on strike -- just in time for the start of summer programming, the Library's busiest season. If you are not working that day, will you join us?

Where: Mississauga Central Library, 301 Burnhamthorpe Road West, Mississauga
When: July 4, from 8 am to 7 pm (picket shifts throughout)
Why: Because library workers deserve fairness and respect


Celebrating Our First Harper-Free Canada Day

Montreal Simon - il y a 12 heures 11 min


It was a beautiful blue summer day in the Great White North. The kind I dream about all year round.

A chance to get away from the city, feel the clean lake air in my face. Try to forget about all the problems we face in this increasingly scary world.

And prepare to celebrate what will be for me, one of the greatest days of my life.

The first Canada Day since we defeated the hideous tyrant Stephen Harper.
Read more »

Building A Country

Northern Reflections - il y a 12 heures 31 min


When Barack Obama addressed Parliament two days ago, he recalled what the other Prime Minister Trudeau said about building a country:

A country, after all, is not something you build as the pharaohs built the pyramids, and leave standing there to defy eternity. A country is something that is built every day out of certain basic shared values.
In 1867, Canada seemed like an impossible dream. In 1995, we almost lost it. But the country has endured.

May it continue to endure. And may we continue to build it.

Image: ottawacitizen.com

Thursday Morning Links

accidentaldeliberations - jeu, 06/30/2016 - 08:30
This and that for your Thursday reading.

- Ed Finn discusses how to fight for needed alternatives to neoliberalism in the face of seemingly daunting odds and structural barriers.

- Noah Smith points out how most economic analysis omits important social factors which ultimately matter far more to people than marginal GDP. And as a prime example, BBC reports on a new poll showing the UK's immense and growing class divide.

- Armine Yalnizyan responds to a spate of deficit hysteria by pointing out that Canada's public sector is entirely sustainable (particularly if the federal government uses its fiscal capacity for the public good).

- Iglika Ivanova discusses the growing number of people trapped below the poverty line while working in Vancouver. And Darlene O'Leary comments on the need for a national housing strategy as part of a Canada-wide effort to alleviate poverty.

- The Star-Phoenix reports on the billion-dollar annual costs of excluding indigenous citizens of Saskatchewan from full economic participation.

-  Finally, Sean McElwee and Ashley Jardina find that younger U.S. voters are rejecting racist rhetoric while favouring a more inclusive society.

New column day

accidentaldeliberations - jeu, 06/30/2016 - 08:23
Here (via PressReader), on the Brexit vote as both a dangerous step toward an even more business-biased system of international relations, and a cautionary tale about basing votes on frustration.

For further reading...
- John Hilary highlights the trade negotiations likely to follow from the Brexit vote. And Jamie Doward takes a look at the "passport" issue for UK banks.
- As another reminder beyond the column that not all trade structures are alike, Roland Smith points out the difference between the World Trade Organization's relatively limited role addressing tariffs and the far more limiting provisions of other trade deals (though I'd disagree with his presumption that we should favour the latter).
- Andrew Coyne argues that the concept of open borders should be presented to the public for approval rather than being foisted on an unknowing populace - which would at least avoid the type of backlash seen in the Brexit vote. And Evan Solomon wonders how much longer the current trend toward corporate-focused globalization can last.
- Finally, Armine Yalnizyan rightly notes that Brexit and other maneuverings around trade deals won't change the general movement toward a more connected world. But we still have every reason to be interested in the rules governing our international connections.

The Con Brexiteers and the Road to Ruin

Montreal Simon - jeu, 06/30/2016 - 07:17


Ever since Jason Kenney tweeted out his enthusiastic support for the Brexit referendum result, he has been widely ridiculed.



Especially since the Brexiteer's bubble burst.

European leaders have insisted they will set the terms of the EU’s split from Britain, rejecting suggestions by British Prime Minister David Cameron that informal discussions can take place.

The future is looking grim, and it's getting hard to tell who is more confused Boris Johnson or Nigel Farage.
Read more »

They Also Begin At Home

Northern Reflections - jeu, 06/30/2016 - 04:26


During the 2015 election, Justin Trudeau made a number of promises to immigrant communities across the country. He has kept some of those promises. Avvy Go writes:

To his credit, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has either delivered on a number of his promises, or has taken some critical first steps towards their implementation, not the least of which are the inquiry into the missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls, the reinstatement of the Court Challenges Program, and the acceptance of more than 20,000 Syrian refugees.
In some immigrant communities, the change in government has even generated rumours that there are now more generous rules granting permanent resident status for non-status immigrants. Several ethno-racial legal clinics are seeing a sudden surge of clients who have lived underground for many years in Canada, and are now reaching out for help to regularize their status.
But Trudeau promised much more. And there is much more to do:  On other issues, repeated assurances have been made for reform with no concrete action. An example of this is the Liberal promise to revoke the Conditional Permanent Resident (CPR) status, which forces sponsored spouses to stay in a relationship with their sponsors for two years or risk losing their permanent resident status. This CPR provision has been shown to increase the risk of domestic violence and abuse. Immigration Minister John McCallum has said that the CPR will be revoked, without stating when or clarifying whether the revocation will be made retroactive to cover all those who have been, and continue to be, subject to investigation by immigration authorities.
Further, while there has been talk to reform the Temporary Foreign Workers Program, the consultations to date have been skewed towards employers and agencies that broker contracts, as opposed to the migrants living in precarious conditions.
True, the “to do” list for the new government is long. But it is not long enough. Missing from the list is the much needed renewal of Canada’s Action Plan Against Racism (CAPAR) instituted by the Paul Martin government in 2005. Little to no action has been taken over the last 10 years to maintain programs that were once designed to combat systemic racism, let alone implement new measures to address growing colour-coded disparities. Although it is encouraging to see significant commitments and initiatives with respect to Indigenous issues and concerns, for peoples of colour Canada has effectively wasted 10 years on this important file.
Yesterday Trudeau, and Presidents Obama and Pena Nieto made a joint commitment to co-operation and openness. Like charity, they also begin at home.
Image: huffingtonpost.ca

2nd Electoral Reform Committee meeting

Creekside - jeu, 06/30/2016 - 04:20
was held in camera yesterday. 

The entire three hour meeting from 10am til 1pm - with presentations from five in-house analysts and tech experts and questions from MPs - was held in camera.

What happened to last week's decision to televise them? 

Meanwhile ...




Former Ontario Progressive Conservative Party president Richard Ciano and Nick Kouvalis of Campaign Research - pollsters and managers of the Rob Ford and John Tory campaigns, harriers of Liberals

have teamed up with Liberal Toronto Councillor Justin Di Ciano to found a "grass roots advocacy group" Keep Voting Simple . 
Their aim is to fight electoral reform and advocate for a national referendum. 
Funny how those two ideas keep cropping up together.


Canadians wishing to appear before the ERRE committee or submit a brief have until Oct 07 to do so. 
Questions to be submitted a la Cullen's motion for public participation in questioning witnesses can be left at #ERRE#Q. 
A notice with the deets will be put up on the committee site.

Minutes from yesterday's meeting

My notes on first ERRE meeting
.


Will the Brexit Referendum Lead to a Generational War?

Montreal Simon - jeu, 06/30/2016 - 02:08


As you know I was not happy with result of the so-called Brexit referendum

I thought it was a reckless move, that amounted to throwing out the baby, and the future, with the bath water.

I hate the way it has triggered an explosion of racism.

And I also hate the way it has driven a wedge between the young and the old in Britain.
Read more »

The News Keeps Gettting Worse

Politics and its Discontents - mer, 06/29/2016 - 18:31
In a column on Tuesday, environmental blogger Robert Scribbler noted that the Northern Hemisphere Jet Stream had merged with the Southern Hemisphere Jet Stream.

“It’s the very picture of weather weirding due to climate change. Something that would absolutely not happen in a normal world,” he wrote. “Something, that if it continues, basically threatens seasonal integrity.”

“Historically, the Tropics — which produce the tallest and thickest air mass in the world — have served as a mostly impenetrable barrier to upper level winds moving from one Hemisphere to another. But as the Poles have warmed due to human-forced climate change, the Hemispherical Jet Streams have moved out of the Middle Latitudes more and more. ”

“That’s bad news for seasonality,” he continued. “You get this weather-destabilizing and extreme weather generating mixing of seasons that is all part of a very difficult to deal with ‘Death of Winter’ type scenario.”If you watch the accompanying video, you will be struck by the interconnectedness of climate systems. Changes in those system thanks to climate change threaten to become catastrophic.

In the following YouTube video, Beckwith says
that the jet stream behavior signaled “massive hits to the food supply” and “massive geopolitical unrest.”Recommend this Post

Wednesday Morning Links

accidentaldeliberations - mer, 06/29/2016 - 06:36
Miscellaneous material for your mid-week reading.

- Mary O'Hara reviews Daniel Hatcher's new book on the U.S.' poverty industry which seeks to exploit public supports for private gain:
(A) new book published last week by law professor and advocate Daniel L Hatcher, The Poverty Industry: The Exploitation of America’s Most Vulnerable Citizens, exposes a largely unrecognised yet deeply disturbing additional dimension to the issue: the vast scale of disadvantaged people being fleeced for profit. In this meticulously researched book Hatcher, who has represented vulnerable people in court for years, including children in foster care, lifts the lid on a system that rather than helping the needy, systematically turns them into “a source of revenue”.

His summary of what he has coined the “poverty industry” is: “the private sector partnering with the state and local governments to use the vulnerable as a resource for extracting funds … strip-mining billions in federal aid and other funds from impoverished families, abused and neglected children, the disabled and elderly poor”.
...
(T)the book cites multiple incidences of children in care and older people in care homes, as well as young people in juvenile detention, being drugged to save money in staffing costs. In one state, 40% of all foster children were sedated using psychotropic drugs.

The resurgence of debtors’ prisons in some states, which trap the poor in a cycle of debt, is also featured. “Low-income defendants are first saddled with unmanageable court fines and fees, then the courts hire private collection agencies, probation companies … all tacking on more and more fees to the debts of the poor,” Hatcher says. One judge in Alabama told litigants to sell their blood to pay fines, or end up in jail.

As the book so clearly points out, if there wasn’t money to be made from the poor, there wouldn’t be so many companies vying for contracts and lobbying for a piece of the pie.

Hatcher’s analysis is a cautionary tale. Some companies chasing lucrative contracts in the US do the same in the UK. Private does not equal better, or more efficient. The only thing that matters is the welfare of the most vulnerable.- And Ryan Moore points out that the Harper Cons' dumb-on-crime policies continue to push marginalized populations into a vicious and costly cycle - and there's little apparent indication that the Libs plan to change course.

- Louis-Philippe Rochon sees the Brexit vote as a working-class response to being neglected by governments of multiple political configurations, while the Resolution Foundation notes that most of the British public is facing at best a stagnant standard of living. And Mariana Mazzucato observes that austerity is the main culprit in limiting opportunities for all but the privileged few.

- Brent Patterson makes a case against selling off Canada's commonwealth - whether or not under some new label such as "asset recycling".

- Finally, Stefani Langenegger reports on the massive cost of the Saskatchewan Party's carbon capture and storage schemes compared to other forms of power. And David Suzuki examines the broken records linked to our climate crisis - as new highs in renewable energy development are still falling far short of what's needed to slow the rise of equally unprecedented climate conditions.

That's When They Turn On You

Northern Reflections - mer, 06/29/2016 - 05:08

As the leaders of the United States, Mexico and Canada meet today in Ottawa, they're feeling pretty good -- particularly after last week's vote in Britain. Tom Walkom writes:

Their cheery collaboration is being deliberately portrayed as a counterpoint to the British public’s gloomy rejection of the European Union.
In effect, the three NAFTA amigos are saying: Hey don’t worry overmuch about Britain and the EU. Global integration is going gangbusters. Look at us.
If it were only that simple.
It's not that simple. Donald Trump is talking about getting out of NAFTA -- unless he gets his way:
In fact, NAFTA is on uncertain ground. In the U.S., presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump has taken a hard line against it.
On Tuesday, in an unusually coherent speech, he repeated his promise to either radically renegotiate NAFTA in America’s favour or have the U.S. withdraw from the pact.
And Canadians themselves are not that gung-ho on the deal:
In Canada, a poll this week found support for NAFTA is split, with roughly 25 per cent in favour, 25 per cent opposed and the remainder indifferent or unsure.
No wonder. The addition of Mexico in 1994 to the original Canada-U.S. Free Trade Agreement has helped manufacturers who locate in that country. But it hasn’t necessarily helped Canada.
Cheaper Mexican wages have encouraged auto plants to build there — often at the expense of jobs in Canada. Even Toronto’s troubled new Bombardier streetcars are being built, in part, in Mexico.Canada’s trade deficit with Mexico stands at about $10 billion.
What the Amigos should remember as they meet, writes Walkom, is that sometimes people get fed up. That's when they turn on you.
Image:care2.com

Nigel Farage and the Rise of the Anti-Brexit Resistance

Montreal Simon - mer, 06/29/2016 - 04:49


Six years ago, while campaigning for his racist UKIP party, Nigel Farage narrowly escaped death when his small plane crashed in a field.

But although Farage survived, Britain may not be so lucky.

Because after UKIP's racist forces helped the LEAVE side win the Brexit referendum, it now looks a lot like that plane.

While Farage can't stop gloating as he did yesterday at the European Parliament.
Read more »

Another Religious Fanatic Prepares to Run for Con Leader

Montreal Simon - mer, 06/29/2016 - 00:54


As we all know the hideous religious fanatic Jason Kenney has been hinting strongly that he is about to leave Ottawa, and ride west to unite the right in Alberta.

No doubt believing that he will be given a hero's welcome, or be greeted like Jesus himself.

Which sadly for him appears to be more and more delusional.

But just the prospect that Kenney could leave, has another monstrous religious fanatic threatening to run for the leadership of the Harper Party.
Read more »

Tuesday Night Cat Blogging

accidentaldeliberations - mar, 06/28/2016 - 18:33
Enclosed cats.




Summer reading open thread

Dawg's Blawg - mar, 06/28/2016 - 08:36
By popular demand, this open thread. “Popular” can, of course, mean just about anything these days, eh, Craig? So, what have people read? What are they planning to read? What should we read? Floor is yours. I’m reading a sci-fi... Dr.Dawg http://drdawgsblawg.ca/

Pages

Subscribe to canadianprogressives.ca agrégateur - Posts from our progressive community