A Puff of Absurdity: On Entitlement and Unfettered Rage

One of the benefits or downfalls of the internet is that it allows fringe groups to find each other online. When it comes to feeling like nobody in the world knows about climate change or the Myanmar genocide (or philosophy), because nobody in my immediate vicinity is too concerned or interested, then it’s invaluable to ...

Accidental Deliberations: Tuesday Morning Links

This and that for your Tuesday reading. – Matthew Yglesias examines the direct effects of social programs, and finds there’s every reason to invest more in them: Mercury emissions (mostly from coal plants) end up in the water, where they end up in fish, from whence they end up in the bloodstreams of children and ...

wmtc: from the 2018 cupe ontario library workers conference: libraries and the opioid crisis

I recently attended the CUPE Ontario Library Workers Conference, which has become a highlight of my year since I first attended (and was elected to the organizing committee) in 2015. It has eclipsed and replaced the OLA Superconference as the most relevant and enjoyable must-attend conference in my schedule. When I first got my librarian ...

A Puff of Absurdity: On UW’s Mental Health Recommendations

After another suicide on the campus of the University of Waterloo, the university compiled 36 recommendations to try to alleviate the mental health crisis and held (and taped) a forum as well. It really says something about our lives that one of the recommendations is about the process of communicating suicides to students. At my school board, ...

A Puff of Absurdity: On Hari’s Lost Connections

“There’s violence to knowing the world isn’t what you thought. . . . Sometimes the world doesn’t make a lot of sense, but how we get through it is, we stick together, okay?” – Gloria Burgle, Fargo I watched Joe Rogan’s interview with (interrogation of) Johann Hari about his new book, Lost Connections. Rogan wasn’t quite ...

A Puff of Absurdity: On Free Meds and Mental Health Care

Perfect timing. My son just finished telling me about his trip to our family doctor in which he tried but failed to get a form filled out that will enable our benefits to cover his ridiculously expensive drugs, when I came across this post on my Twitter feed from the perspicacious Jenny Lawson: I don’t ...

Accidental Deliberations: Leadership 2018 Links

The latest from Saskatchewan’s NDP leadership campaign as the entry deadline has passed and the membership deadline approaches. – While I haven’t tracked endorsements all that closely, it’s certainly worth keeping track of any changes since previous leadership campaigns between two candidates who have run before. And on that front, it’s worth noting that 2009 ...

Accidental Deliberations: Sunday Morning Links

This and that for your Sunday reading. – Matt Bruenig writes that the concentration of wealth and power which is largely being attributed to crony capitalism is a natural byproduct of laissez-faire economics as well: An economy that distributes the national income based solely on the marginal productivity of each unit of capital and labor ...

Accidental Deliberations: Friday Afternoon Links

Assorted content to end your week. – Marco Chown Oved, Toby Heaps and Michael Yow discuss the long-term transition away from meaningful corporate tax contributions to Canada’s public purse: For every dollar corporations pay to the Canadian government in income tax, people pay $3.50. The proportion of the public budget funded by personal income taxes ...

Things Are Good: Let’s get Boys to Feel More Things

In adults we know that having the ability to feel a range of emotions to be a good thing, it allows us to better appreciate the world around us. Yes, even feeling bad can actually be good for you in the long term. We tend to want feelings and experiences that make us feel better ...

Accidental Deliberations: Wednesday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material for your mid-week reading. – Larry Elliott interviews Joseph Stiglitz about the rise of Donald Trump and other demagogues in the wake of public anger over inequality and economic unfairness. And Stiglitz also joins a group of economists calling for an end to austerity in the UK. – Phillip Mendonca-Vieira highlights how rent ...

Accidental Deliberations: Friday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material to end your week. – Laurie MacFarlane points out how increases in land values have resulted in massive and unearned disparities in wealth. – Kevin Page, Claudette Bradshaw, Geoff Nelson and Tim Aubrey write that a national housing strategy needs to focus on the availability of both affordable housing, and social supports to ...

Accidental Deliberations: Wednesday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material for your mid-week reading. – Dani Rodrik writes that politicians looking to provide an alternative to toxic populism will need to offer some other challenge to a system biased in favour of the wealthy and powerful: (P)oliticians who want to steal the demagogues’ thunder have to tread a very narrow path. If fashioning ...

A Puff of Absurdity: So NOW What? On Power and Sexual Abuse and the Culture of Celebrity

A little over year ago, when I first heard about Louis CK’s abuse of power, I was going to write a post suggesting he might actually be the guy able to fess up, apologize sincerely, and lead the way for other men to admit to their abusive behaviours. I’m a big fan, and he sometimes ...

Accidental Deliberations: Sunday Morning Links

This and that for your Sunday reading. – Andre Picard argues that Bernie Sanders’ trip to highlight Canada’s health care system shouldn’t be taken as an indication we lack plenty of room for improvement. And Margot Sanger-Katz writes that Sanders indeed learned lessons about the holes in our health coverage. – David Suzuki discusses the ...

Accidental Deliberations: Sunday Morning Links

This and that for your Sunday reading. – Jonathan Ostry comments on the emerging recognition that inequality represents a barrier to economic development: I argue that greater attention should be paid to the consequences that economic policies have for income distribution (inequality). The reasons are four-fold. First, excessive levels of inequality are bad not only ...

A Puff of Absurdity: On Anxiety

I just finished John Green’s Turtles All the Way Down, which I read because he claimed it was his way of trying to put words around what it’s like to live with profound anxiety, and then I saw this article asking “Why are more American teens than ever suffering from severe anxiety?”. I was raised ...

Accidental Deliberations: Monday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material to start your week. – Karl Russell and Peter Goodman note that lower unemployment rates in the U.S aren’t translating into higher wages. Alena Semuels points out the barriers preventing people from moving in order to pursue a higher income. And Kevin Brice-Lall interviews Jonathan Rosenblum about the need for activism to push ...

wmtc: what i’m reading: turtles all the way down, the new book by john green

I don’t usually write about a book while I’m still under its spell, but there are always exceptions. John Green’s Turtles All the Way Down is an exceptional book. One reason Green’s writing is so powerful is that he conjures both the specific and the universal at the same time. The Fault in Our Stars, for ...

Accidental Deliberations: Thursday Morning Links

This and that for your Thursday reading. – Trish Garner offers some suggestions for evidence-based poverty reduction – with a strong emphasis on the need for employers to pay a living wage. And Jim Stanford challenges critics of a $15 minimum wage to put their money where their mouth is when it comes to fearmongering ...

wmtc: thoughts on the latest u.s. gun massacre

As part of my continuing efforts to post here rather than — or at least in addition to — Facebook, here are some thoughts on the latest horrific massacre in the US, the country music festival in Las Vegas. First, the inevitability of recurrence. When hearing about mass shootings in the United States, the worst ...

Accidental Deliberations: Saturday Morning Links

Assorted content for your weekend reading. – Naomi Klein examines how climate change has contributed to a summer of extreme weather disasters, while David Suzuki highlights how we can work with nature to respond to increased flooding. And Emily Atkin discusses the outsized damage 90 corporate behemoths have done to our climate. – Meanwhile, Abacus ...

THE CAREGIVERS' LIVING ROOM A Blog by Donna Thomson: An Unimaginable Choice: Trading Parental Rights for Care

A CBC freedom of information request to the Nova Scotia government has revealed a terrible reality for children with mental illness and their families. Children too ill for the province’s 15 group homes are housed in residential facilities. But between January 2011 and December 2016, 2,655 of those children were reported missing.  What makes the ...

Accidental Deliberations: Friday Morning Links

Assorted content to end your week. – Leo Gerard calls for an end to trade deals designed to favour the wealthy at the expense of everybody else. And Rick Salutin writes that NAFTA can’t reasonably be seen as anything but: (N)o matter how many numbers Freeland plucks to show the economy’s mighty growth in the ...

A Puff of Absurdity: Prevention as an Ounce of Cure

Here’s an update on what I’ve learned about lymphedema after an ALND. It’s way less scary now that I know how to manage it, but it’s still a drag. It takes about an hour away from me every day. I’m just in the earliest stages, and it possible to stay here forever, but not without ...