Accidental Deliberations: Sunday Morning Links

This and that for your Sunday reading. – Reuters examines how well-being improves when people live in urban areas rather than suburban ones. But Tannara Yelland reminds us that we can’t pretend for a second that people will have the opportunity to do so when there’s more immediate money to be made pricing housing out ...

Accidental Deliberations: Saturday Morning Links

Assorted content for your weekend reading. – Stefan Stern writes that our current corporate culture needs to be changed in ways going far beyond reining in excessive executive compensation: Wage inequality is also a symbol of something more fundamentally wrong in the business world. Too many corporations are competing to achieve the wrong results in ...

A. Picazo: On assisted death and psychological suffering

This column was published at Maclean’s on March 28, 2017 In 2015, a landmark ruling by the Supreme Court of Canada struck down the federal ban on physician-assisted suicide, solidifying the charter right of competent, consenting adults who are “suffering intolerably as a result of a grievous and irremediable medical condition” the right to die ...

Alberta Politics: Shoreline, True Grit, photo-bombing, certainty and the Deity: random observations from Alberta’s Throne Speech

PHOTOS: Alberta Lieutenant Governor Lois Mitchell, clad in a purple official gown, reads the NDP Government’s third Speech from the Throne in the Legislature in Edmonton yesterday afternoon. Below: Party crasher Jason Kenney, Labour Minister Christina Gray (Dave Cournoyer photo) and Opposition Leader Brian Jean. Alberta’s New Democratic Party Government delivered its third Speech from ...

Alberta Politics: Unite-the-right poll results ring alarm bells and raise interesting questions, none of which are asked by the media

PHOTOS: A pollster asks a typical Albertan if she’d prefer to vote for a united Wildrose-PC Party … or the NDP. Actual Alberta pollsters and their subjects may not appear exactly as illustrated. Below: Pollster Quito Maggi, Alberta Prosperity Fund and Advocacy Ltd. spokesperson Dave Rutherford, and Preston Manning, who needs no introduction around this ...

Melissa Fong: RIP Bud Osborn

  RIP Bud Osborn http://t.co/CrWrlN1PR7— Melissa Fong (@internationalmf) May 07, 2014   raise shit – a downtown eastside poem of resistance “the myth of the frontier is an invention that rationalizes […]

Bill Longstaff: Canada strikes out as a progressive nation

There was a time—long, long ago—when Canada had a reputation in the world as a progressive nation. Well … not so long ago actually. Only eight years in fact. It just seems like a long time. Now, in at least three areas we have joined the ranks of the reactionaries, we have three strikes against ...

Melissa Fong: The facts on PHS scandal & following reactions of critics, boards and Jenny Kwan

…The fact is that PHS provides really important harm reduction programming that needs to be defended. The scandal involves non-profit board members that are supposed to be working in the best interest of the DTES, not on #34KVacations. Townshend and Small (Jenny Kwan’s ex) are implicated with irresponsible spending on administrative costs. Any budget for ...

Melissa Fong: “Micro-brothels” in BC: Are we still criminalizing prostitution?

“Micro-brothels” in BC: Are we still criminalizing prostitution? The short answer: YES. Now the long answer: I’ve seen a couple articles in Vancouver’s 24hr News about how micro-brothels are a booming and we should be really scared because micro-brothels are dangerous.  See here and here. First article: Sex-worker activist Sue Davis said buying and selling ...

Things Are Good: 15-Year Study: Stop Drug Use Through Harm Reduction

The American style “war on drugs” undoubtably ruins more lives than it saves (all while militarizing North American police forces), yet some people think that punishing drug users is sound policy. Research is continually adding more evidence that approaching drug consumption as a health issue and not a criminal one improves the lives of users ...

Olivia Chow as Toronto mayor?

God, weren’t we all thankful when we heard Rob Ford was finally given the boot? (Let’s hope it stays that way, anyway). Of course, before his appeal has even really begun, people (the media) have been speculating on his replacements. Many names have come up already, among them Olivia Chow and Adam Vaughan (Toronto City ...

Obama wins! Marijuana legalized?!?!

(On a quick side note, I’m going to start breaking up my posts into the different topics in the title, using red headings, as seen below – ‘Fiscal Cliff and American Political System’ – to make it easier for people to find what they really want to read about) So thank God that Obama won. ...

knitnut.net: Safe injection sites: Treating people with addictions like they matter

Last October, the Supreme Court ruled that Insite, Vancouver’s safe injection site, could stay open despite the Harper Government’s objections. The arguments hinged on whether addiction was primarily a health issue or a crime issue. If it were a health matter it would fall under provincial jurisdiction; if it were a criminal code issue, it ...

Combat zone

It is a war out there, and the front line combatants are women. Dr Gabor Maté has charted the battles that rage within and without, which begin from the moment a zygote starts its journey of cell proliferation and eventually, attempts to survive as a creature facing a hostile environment. Human infants are extraordinarily fragile ...

THE FIFTH COLUMN: We Must Stop Stephen Harper and the 20% from Destroying Canada

There has been lots of discussion about how Stephen Harper’s majority only represents 40% of voters because of the way our electoral system works. But, in reality, his agenda has much fewer supporters. We must remember that the Conservative Party is a coalition. It is not a coalition in the sense that the proposed Liberal-NDP ...

Update, finally!

So the Conservatives are finally starting to have fun with their majority. We all knew this day would come — when we would be forced to helplessly sit at the sidelines and watch while these idiots we call ‘representatives’ shove through legislation so hard it hurts me to even think about it. The Cons have ...

eaves.ca: How the War on Drugs Destabilized the Global Economy

This is truly, truly fantastic. If you haven’t already read this stunning story from the Guardian: How a big US bank laundered billions from Mexico’s murderous drug gangs. This is, in essence a chronicle how the dark and sordid side of banking and about how one US bank – Wachovia – essentially allowed Mexican drug ...

knitnut.net: Insite comes to Ottawa

The Harper Government TM is still attempting to shut down Insite, Canada’s only supervised injection site. The case is now before the Supreme Court of Canada, which is where I spent yesterday morning. I had to line up to go through a scanner, and empty my pockets and put metal things in a bin and ...

This is a gift…

So, my loyal readers, I’m sure that you’ve all been keeping up to date on the activities. Well, the police went overboard (like I predicted) and brutalized SO many people. My girlfriend was part of the group that got boxed in on Queen and Spadina on Sunday… I was so scared! But she got out ...

Harm Reduction Superheroes!

So last Thursday I did a panel speech and presented a workshop at YSB’s forum. It was called Building Bridges and it focused on youth ‘in transition’ from youth to adulthood and how we can better support them. Oh yeah, on a side note, things with Kristy didn’t exactly work out. I know, what a ...

Busy bee!

So I was having a really crappy today and yesterday. I spiked my opiate tolerance by using a LOT of Dilaudids, and man did I ever come down sideways when I started to use less. I mean, I was dopesick even before I tried to go to sleep last night, and waking up this morning ...

Portugal — a model of the future! Part ONE

Part One of a Two-Part Special Series! So I’m sure those of you who keep up with the news have read at some point or another that Portugal decriminalized all drugs in 2001. This decision was supported by a huge majority of their society, from lawmakers to law enforcement, social workers, medical professionals and of ...

Nothing too exciting…

So, nothing too exciting has been happening. I had court this morning, and was surprised to hear that my lawyer didn’t go to the Counsel Pre-Trial he set for Monday — when I talked to him yesterday he made it sound like he went, and he wasn’t even there this morning, he just left instructions ...

Naloxone programs

So I just found out that a good friend of mine died of an overdose while I was in jail last week. It came as quite a surprise to her family because she appeared to be a young urban professional with a bright future, and nobody knew that she was secretly shooting heroin on a ...

Making the system work? Yeah, right!

The following is an editorial from the Ottawa Sun about a week or two ago. MAKING THE SYSTEM WORKPrisoners incarcerated for crimes against society think theyhave “rights” The right to have needles for injecting drugs; andpaid for by taxpayers? Criminals are in prison for rehabilitation, not tocontinue doing what got them there in the first ...