Contract Day

Illustration of people supporting CUPE

With all the delicacy of a sledgehammer, Doug Ford’s conservative government in Ontario has crafted an elegant solution to negotiating with public sector unions: Don’t. Instead, as a government, simply define what you want the contract to be, override any constitutional protections the union may have by using the ‘notwithstanding’ clause, and impose it on…

Thin Blue Line

Thin blue line

I’ve seen a number of these images over the last few weeks, including some on motorcyclists on Anticosti Island and on this truck pictured here. As Wikipedia says, The “thin blue line” is a term that typically refers to the concept of the police as the line which keeps society from descending into violent chaos….

Abortion

Supreme Court Votes 5-4 To Reclassify Women As Service Animals

In the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade abortion has become illegal in many places in the United States. This is a key point in a long-standing campaign by the Church and right-wing conservatives to return to a state of affairs that existed prior to the mid-20th century. Here…

Gas Prices

Higher gas prices, declining oil prices

There has been a lot of talk about inflation, which I address in an other post, but for now I want to focus on gas prices. First, take a look at the illustration. Notice that even though oil prices are declining, gas prices are still rising. This is known as the ‘crack gap’ and exists…

Tim Hortons

Tim Hortons is a chain of coffee shops founded by and named after a hockey player. It has been around as long as I can remember. I used to love the plain cruellers (and occasionally the walnut crullers) which were huge chunks of deep-fried dough. The cruellers are gone now, disappearing in the general down-sizing…

The Debt

One of the incessant ‘Trudeau must go’ posts includes this feature chart. It pegs Canada’s total debt as $1,163 billion, and each individual debt as $31K. These numbers are supposed to frighten us. But what struck me is how low they are. Compare this, say, with total Canadian consumer debt of $2,200 billion. Average consumer…

Inflation and The Deal

Jagmeet Singh and Justin Trudeau

I heard a pernicious argument from a Conservative commentator on Rosemary Barton’s morning show yesterday. In between condescending remarks (“now look, Rosie”) the argument ran as follows: We are in a time of inflation so we should not pass measures that increase consumer spending. So we should oppose pharmacare and dental care. By contrast, though,…

The Jump

Indigenous activists on tackling the climate crisis: 'We have done more than any government' – video

Based on research carried out by academics at Leeds University a study asks people people to make The Jump and sign up to six pledges that “could account for a quarter of the emissions reductions required to keep the global heating down to 1.5C.” The six pledges are as follows: Eat a largely plant-based diet,…

The Wild Fields

Putin's Novorossiya

I watched a lovely bit of propaganda from Russian television on prime recently, the first two seasons of Ekaterina, the story of Catherine the Great, who ruled Russia in the mid 1700s. Though the second season paled in comparison with the first, it was still entertaining, and I’m looking forward to more. And I don’t…