Archive for April, 2020

After this Earth Day, let’s never go back to normal..

April 22, 2020

And yet, in this awful sadness, we can also identify hope to save our planet. Homebound people and shuttered major industries have allowed the planet to breathe.

Global greenhouse gas emissions have dropped. The waters and air of several major cities, once fouled by pollution, are now clearer. Forms of active transportation (rolling, walking, cycling) now fill city streets once clogged with cars.

And we’ve also been reminded about the importance of low-wage service professions. Who do we rely on more? The stock trader or the grocery store clerk? The personal support worker or the professional athlete? The politician or the warehouse worker?

How do we pay off pandemic debt? Tax the rich..

April 20, 2020

Governments across the world spending trillions of dollars on emergency stimulus packages to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result, debts across the Western world will skyrocket over the next two years. In October 2019, Canada’s federal debt-to-GDP ratio was just under 31 per cent. Some economists believe Canada’s total debt could increase to around 100 per cent. For every tax dollar Ottawa collected in November 2019, seven cents was spent to service the debt. By the end of 2021 that figure may increase dramatically

Trudeau promises gun control legislation after deadliest shooting in Canadian history..

April 20, 2020

Canadian Prime minister Justin Trudeau said Monday his government would move ahead on the gun control legislation he promised during last year’s election campaign after the deadliest shooting in his country’s history, though it was not clear how soon he would do so.

The Canada Pension Plan is making a killing on war production..

April 18, 2020

The Ottawa-based Coalition to Oppose the Arms Trade (COAT) has noted that the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) had $9 million invested in BAE Systems in 2015 and $33 million in 2017/18. With respect to the $9 million figure, World Beyond War has noted, “this is an investment in the UK BAE, none in the US subsidiary.”

These figures also indicate that CPPIB investments in BAE increased after Saudi Arabia began its airstrikes against Yemen in March 2015.

The COVID-19 pandemic: what’s next in Canada?.

April 17, 2020

Canadian economy to take massive hit from COVID-19 and oil — will see largest contraction since 1921..

April 14, 2020

The great lockdown of 2020 to slow the spread of COVID-19 has pushed the world’s economies into a crisis “like no other,” the International Monetary Fund warned Tuesday in a sombre report that predicts the largest economic contraction in Canada since 1921.

Canada’s universal single-payer health-care system is our best vaccination against the neoliberal virus..

April 13, 2020

Who would have thought a decade ago, or even six months back, that Canada’s chances of surviving as a unified country would be better than those of the United States?

The thought the mighty United States of America — e pluribus unum, and all that — could be on the cusp of an existential crisis is still unthinkable to most in those disunited states. Little commentary anywhere has suggested this is even a vague possibility, let alone an actual thing. Not, at least, until California Governor Gavin Newsom declared himself to be the leader of a “nation-state.”

And yet, as the revolutionary Vladimir Ilyich Lenin famously observed, “There are decades where nothing happens; and there are weeks when decades happen.” Now that we’ve lived through a few of those weeks, we might want to reassess our eternal verities.

COVID-19 having ‘profound effect’ on Canadian lives, especially psychologically: survey..

April 9, 2020

Extreme concern about loved ones’ health. Fears of Canada’s hospital system becoming overwhelmed. An alarming number of women — one in 10 — afraid of violence erupting in their home.

In just a few weeks, the COVID-19 pandemic has prompted seismic changes in Canadian society, already having “a profound effect” on the health and behaviour of Canadians, a new survey released Wednesday by Statistics Canada reveals.

Canada’s good to go for 3M medical masks — until Trump changes his mind again..

April 8, 2020

Yesterday evening, 3M was widely reported to have issued a news release saying it would continue to export the U.S.-made medical face masks to Canada. The deal with the White House is said to hinge on a plan by 3M to import more than 166.5 million of the masks from a facility it owns in China.

“Canada looks to have secured a vital supply of face masks from the United States,” the National Post, champion of globalization, sighed with relief. Ford’s estimate of the original shipment size was adjusted to half a million.

US blocks millions of N95 face masks headed for Canada..

April 6, 2020

US officials have stopped nearly three million specialized masks from being exported to Canada’s most populous province, amid mounting fears that Ontario will run out of supplies for medical staff battling coronavirus by the end of the week.