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Economic Crisis

  • Saskatchewan’s COVID-19 failure exposes the bankruptcy of neoliberalism

    Neoliberalism has no answer to collective or social problems, which is why we have seen this ideology fail so spectacularly during the pandemic, particularly in Saskatchewan. While many of us have been socialized into hyper-individualist forms of thinking, as progressives we must continue to focus our critique, through the pandemic and beyond, on the root causes of violence and inequality, rather than its symptoms.

  • America’s new class war

    There is one last hope for the United States. It does not lie in the ballot box. It lies in the union organizing and strikes by workers at Amazon, Starbucks, Uber, Lyft, John Deere, Kellogg, the Special Metals plant in Huntington, West Virginia, the Northwest Carpenters Union, Kroger, teachers in Chicago, and the members of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees.

  • ‘Twin Peaks’ and the end of history

    In Twin Peaks: The Return, the evils of empire bubble up in ways that are peculiar and scary, but which always point irrevocably toward a sense of decline. In many ways, the season is a lament for American imperialism, and the pile of victims it has accrued on its single-minded drive toward the annihilation of its enemies, which will ultimately lead to the annihilation of itself.

  • A critique of obscene wealth

    Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, and other billionaires decide alone and unaccountably how to spend hundreds of billions. The decisions of a few hundred bring economic development to some regions, industries, and enterprises and lead to the economic decline of other regions. The many millions of people affected by those spending decisions are excluded from participating in making them.

  • More fibs from the Fraser Institute

    Fraser’s typical line is to depict Canada’s economic order as some sort of progressive spending frenzy which needs to be countermanded by severe austerity. This is not true. Canada’s general economic policy is already conservative, with low social spending, large tax breaks for property owners, and paltry government revenues. Increasing that conservatism would be needless, cruel, and bad policy.

  • The 0.01% vs. the rest of us

    In 2010, Occupy Wall Street popularized the slogan “We are the 99%” to confront the excess of wealth and power of the one percent. Unfortunately, those at the top continue to grab an oversized share of incomes and wealth, both in Canada and globally. Between 2010 and 2019, the top one percent added almost $140,000 to their average incomes, while the ultra-elite 0.01 percent enjoyed an increase of $2.9 million.

  • Inside Laurentian University’s demise

    What happened to Laurentian University? How did a publicly funded Ontario university go to the edge of bankruptcy without anyone intervening before the crisis became inescapable? And if it was a crisis, why didn’t the provincial government intervene? What are we to think of a “restructuring” that eliminates the disciplines that define the institution it claims to be saving?

  • Navigating the housing crisis with poverty wages: What hope for young Canadians?

    While raising the minimum wage won’t solve the housing crisis, it would provide some young Canadians the ability to support themselves. Most urgently, we must bring pressure to bear on the Canadian government to implement a new National Housing Strategy that injects billions into non-market housing and eliminates zoning laws that impede the construction of mid-density housing.

  • British Columbia floods reveal our system’s skewed priorities

    While those who hold political power drag their feet when dealing with the causes and impacts of climate change, it is instructive to consider the circumstances in which they demonstrate that they are perfectly capable of taking swift and decisive action. Indeed, when it comes to protecting fossil fuel interests, supporting corporate profits, crushing Indigenous resistance, their alacrity was fully on display in BC.

  • Billionaires won’t save us

    On November 16, longtime New York Times opinion columnist Thomas Friedman published his latest in a long line of horribly wrong takes arguing that the climate crisis will not be solved through state action, but rather by relying on market forces and empowering entrepreneurs. Naturally, as one might expect from such an argument, he held one person up as the meeting of those two forces: billionaire man-child Elon Musk.

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