Archive for July, 2016

We have a corporate media problem

July 29, 2016

The situation is beyond abysmal and it’s no small wonder why Canada’s media outlets are so overtly right wing and, when considering the figures above, why they so often act as stenographers for the powerful.

Québec is gambling with Internet censorship: What is Bill 74 and how can we kill it?

July 29, 2016

The province of Québec has just accomplished a rare feat: it has everyone, including Internet freedom advocates, Internet Service Providers (ISPs), website operators, and even the federal government shaking their heads in unison.

How did they do it? By passing Bill 74, or An Act respecting mainly the implementation of certain provisions of the Budget Speech of 26 March 2015. The bill contains, as the name says, mainly budgetary provisions, and then some other stuff — stuff that would let the Québec government decide what websites the people in the province would be allowed to visit.

So what exactly IS Bill 74? And how does it threaten Net Neutrality, Free Expression, and a long Canadian tradition of standing up for the open Internet? Let’s dig in!

Dear Canadian media: Your racism is showing

July 29, 2016

Mainstream news media and social media are in near-unanimous agreement. After nine years of a Conservative government with limited popular support, we now have a prime minister who cries for the Indigenous Peoples of this land and dances in support of the LGBTQ+ community.

However, as many marginalized peoples in this country are aware, there are many areas in Canada that warrant scrutiny and today I am going to focus on one in particular: Canadian news media.

Canadian media is failing citizens with its reporting on corporate rights deals

July 29, 2016

The Trudeau government is hell-bent on ratifying two massive investment agreements — the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) and Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) — that will radically undermine Canadian democracy. Yet very few Canadians are informed about these deals because our mainstream media has been so irresponsible in reporting on their impacts.

Canada joins NATO’s war escalation in eastern Europe

July 29, 2016

Canadians who hoped the federal election last October 19 would usher in change to the aggressive, foreign policy of the defeated Conservative government are wondering what happened to their wishes. The transition in imperialist foreign policy from the Harper Conservatives to the Justin Trudeau-led Liberals has been utterly seamless, if not predictable.

Trudeau popular in the polls, but concerns begin to emerge

July 29, 2016

.some of that popularity may also be based on the perception that the Trudeau government is a truly progressive government that is implementing a decidedly different agenda than the Harper government. The evidence is beginning to suggest that’s not totally true.

Three positive steps toward ending poverty in Canada

July 29, 2016

In 1989, when the House of Commons voted unanimously to end child poverty by the year 2000, there was much applause.

But as the years started to pass, political inaction fuelled a deepening sense that government commitments to reduce poverty were mere words.

It’s 2016 and Canada is a long way from ending poverty, but three promising developments are about to lift almost half a million people above the poverty line.

Canada will never end racism unless it dispels these three national myths first

July 29, 2016

In this respect, the new Anti-Racism Directorate aims to tackle systemic racism at a broad level through policy, research, public awareness and community collaboration. However, the Directorate’s work, and in effect its very existence, will always be resisted and threatened by some unless common underlying myths about racism are first addressed in the public sphere.

Trudeau continues Harper assault on human rights

July 29, 2016

There’s something about Justin Trudeau and his PR-spinning Liberal Team that reminds me of the Tennessee Williams character Harvey “Big Daddy” Pollitt from Cat on a Hot Tin Roof. Pollitt famously uttered the line:

“What’s that smell in this room? Didn’t you notice it, Brick? Didn’t you notice a powerful and obnoxious odour of mendacity in this room?… There ain’t nothin’ more powerful than the odour of mendacity… You can smell it. It smells like death.”

The Ugly Canadian: Kinross Gold

July 9, 2016

As with many other Canadian mining companies in Africa, Kinross has paid the country little and was accused of corruption.

The Ugly Canadian: Kinross Gold