The Progressive Economics Forum: Homelessness in BC

In anticipation of tomorrow’s provincial budget in British Columbia (BC), I’ve written a blog post about the state of homelessness in that province. Points raised in the blog post include the following: -Public operating spending by BC’s provincial government has decreased over the past 20 years. -Even after controlling for inflation, average rent levels across ...

Accidental Deliberations: Monday Afternoon Links

Assorted content for your Family Day reading. – Gloria Galloway reports on Jagmeet Singh’s strong case for fair tax revenues as a key highlight from the NDP’s federal convention: In his speech to delegates, Mr. Singh lamented income inequality, urged the protection of pensions, called for publicly funded pharmacare and dental and eye care, and ...

Accidental Deliberations: Sunday Afternoon Links

This and that for your Sunday reading. – Zoe Williams highlights how misleading framing has caused far too many people to accept destructive austerity and inequality: Not unreasonably, given the financial crash and its worldwide consequences, the economy was seen as intensely volatile, susceptible to grand forces whose actual nature fell into a cognitive black ...

The Progressive Economics Forum: Panel discussion at federal NDP policy convention

Yesterday I spoke on a panel discussion on economic inequality, along with Andrew Jackson and Armine Yalnizyan. We were guests at the federal NDP’s policy convention in Ottawa. The panel was moderated by Guy Caron. Topics covered included the minimum wage, basic income, affordable housing, the future of jobs, gender budgeting, poverty among seniors, Canadian ...

Accidental Deliberations: Wednesday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material for your mid-week reading. – Anna Coote discusses some of the potential problems with a universal basic income on its own – particularly to the extent it takes momentum away from the prospect of universal basic services. – Scott Sinclair examines how little has changed – and how many substantial dangers haven’t – ...

Accidental Deliberations: Sunday Morning Links

This and that for your Sunday reading. – Robert Jago comments on an all-white jury’s acquittal of Gerald Stanley for the shooting death of Colten Boushie. Shree Paradkar notes that the issue of non-representative juries is far from a new one. Scott Gilmore recognizes that Boushie’s death and its aftermath are just one more story ...

Accidental Deliberations: Friday Morning Links

Assorted content to end your week. – Jim O’Neill proposes an end to corporate free-riding (and an assurance of contribution to the society which allows for profit) through explicit “pay-or-play” rules: Since proposing a pay-or-play scheme for the pharmaceutical industry, I have come to think that the same principle could be applied more broadly in ...

Accidental Deliberations: Thursday Morning Links

This and that for your Thursday reading. – Michelle Chen takes note of the influx of young energy into the U.S.’ labour movement: (I)n contrast to the myth of millennials’ being economically and politically adrift, they’re stepping in readily to fill the union ranks that have hemorrhaged middle-aged workers over the years—2017 actually saw an ...

Accidental Deliberations: Friday Morning Links

Assorted content to end your week. – Joseph Stiglitz discusses the apparent destructive belief among Davos’ elites that irrational exuberance and top-heavy economic gains are remotely sustainable: The world is plagued by almost intractable problems. Inequality is surging, especially in the advanced economies. The digital revolution, despite its potential, also carries serious risks for privacy, ...

The Disaffected Lib: Maybe Bill and Justin Should Read This Before They Get Carried Away with Themselves.

The Guardian’s  Lefty Luddite, Polly Toynbee, offers an entertainingly morbid look at the devastation privatisation has brought to Britain. Perhaps our prime minister What Me Worry? and his finance minister, Bill Churn Baby, Churn Morneau, or, as I like to call them, the Kids Without a Clue, should have a read. Toynbee blames much of the toxic ...

Accidental Deliberations: Thursday Morning Links

This and that for your Thursday reading. – Nathan Akehurst writes that the Carillion collapse was just the tip of the iceberg in the corporatization and destruction of the UK’s public services. And Neil Macdonald points out that the Trudeau Libs are pitching privatized infrastructure as easy money for investors – and that they can ...

Accidental Deliberations: Tuesday Morning Links

This and that for your Tuesday reading. – Matthew Sears writes that we would be much better off prioritizing more than just cutting short-term costs and prices in making choices: Are we really unwilling to pay more for our coffee as we are on our way to our well-paid and comfortable jobs (as mine certainly ...

Accidental Deliberations: Saturday Morning Links

Assorted content for your weekend reading. – David McGrane writes about Jack Layton’s five great fights – and how they continue to provide an essential framework for social democrats. – Rupert Neate reports on London’s “ghost towers”, which include tens of thousands of high-end homes sitting empty in a city facing a severe housing crisis. ...

Accidental Deliberations: Friday Evening Links

Assorted content to end your week. – Wanda Wyporska discusses why we can’t expect a group of cloistered elites to do anything to solve the changeable dimensions of inequality. – Jonathan Ford and Gill Plimmer write that the UK is beginning to learn its lesson about the dangers of privatizing public services. And PressProgress offers ...

Accidental Deliberations: New column day

Here, on how Carillion’s collapse points out one of the most important failings of Brad Wall’s tenure in office. For further reading…– Plenty of others have also weighed in on the Carillion story and the dangers of putting corporate interests in charge of public services, including Simon Jenkins, Will Hutton, Jonathan Freedland and  John Crace.  ...

Accidental Deliberations: Monday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material to start your week. – Elizabeth Kolbert comments on the psychology of inequality, and particularly how the current trend in which a disproportionate share of gains goes to a small number of wealthy individuals produces no ultimate winners:  As the relative-income model predicted, those who’d learned that they were earning less than their ...

Accidental Deliberations: Saturday Morning Links

Assorted content for your weekend reading. – Simon Ducatel writes about the unfairness of attacking people living in poverty rather than looking for ways to improve their circumstances: (I)n the real world, it is unfortunately not unheard of for some employers to financially or otherwise exploit workers, albeit legally mind you, by offering substandard living ...

Alberta Politics: Fallout from Klein Government mismanagement two decades ago drifts in on the winds of the Carillon collapse

PHOTOS: Winter driving in Alberta (Photo: Wikimedia Commons). Below: Alberta Transportation Minister Brian Mason and Opposition Transportation Critic Wayne Drysdale. That Carillon bankruptcy … did it ring any bells with you? It certainly should have. The spectacular collapse of the U.K. construction giant Carillon PLC has not just shaken the British government, it’s rattled other ...

Accidental Deliberations: Tuesday Morning Links

This and that for your Tuesday reading. – Bernie Sanders comments on the need to take back political power from the wealthiest few: Now, more than ever, those of us who believe in democracy and progressive government must bring low-income and working people all over the world together behind an agenda that reflects their needs. ...

Accidental Deliberations: Sunday Afternoon Links

This and that for your Sunday reading. – Julian Cribb reports on new research as to mass exposure to chemicals and pollutants: Almost every human being is now contaminated in a worldwide flood of industrial chemicals and pollutants – most of which have never been tested for safety – a leading scientific journal has warned. ...

Accidental Deliberations: Thursday Morning Links

This and that for your Thursday reading. – Jerry Dias writes that a new year has already seen far too many examples of corporate greed rampaging out of control. Elizabeth Bruenig highlights the contrasting treatment of poor people who face increasingly stringent requirements to access even meager benefits, and the wealthy who are being handed ...

Alberta Politics: Stephen Mandel, past his best-before date but still politically sexy to media, declares Alberta Party leadership bid

PHOTOS: Stephen Mandel makes his Alberta Party leadership campaign announcement yesterday in Edmonton (Photo: Twitter). Below: Mr. Mandel back in the day with premier Jim Prentice, Alberta Premier Rachel Notley, former Alberta Party leader Greg Clark, and United Conservative Party Leader Jason Kenney. Stephen Mandel’s political strategists would like you to think he’s just the ...

Defend Public Healthcare: Six more problems with Public Private Partnerships (P3s)

The Auditor General (AG) has again identified issues in her annual report which reflect problems with Ontario health care capacity and privatization.   First, here are six key problems with the maintenance of the 16 privatized P3 (“public private partnership”) hospitals in Ontario: There are long-term ongoing disputes with privatized P3 contractors over the P3 agreements, including about what ...

Accidental Deliberations: On entrenchment

Following up on my earlier post and column, let’s start taking a look at some of the more distinctive policy proposals on offer between Saskatchewan’s NDP leadership candidates. Probably the most noteworthy single promise so far is this from Trent Wotherspoon as part of his platform on Crown corporations: Lock down our Crown Corporations and ...

Accidental Deliberations: Wednesday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material for your mid-week reading. – Joseph Stiglitz discusses how the Republicans’ tax scam is designed for the sole purpose of further enriching their already-wealthy donors, while Theodoric Meyer notes that it also stands to make loads of money for lobbyists. – Jagmeet Singh makes the case for Canada to work on a tax ...