Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Ten myth-busting articles about the minimum wage in Ontario


"To increase the minimum wage would result in higher unemployment rates, especially among teenagers". Given the over-the-top anti-minimum wage propaganda of the business lobby in Ontario since it increased to $14/hour January 1, this type of "the sky is falling" argument probably sounds very familiar. But the quote is from the National Chamber of Commerce in the United States arguing against a minimum wage increase in 1977!

The same tired, old and false arguments have been made against the minimum wage over and over and over again and they are just as false now as they were in the past.

As January draws to close, and after an intense public campaign by forces on the right, here are ten myth-busting articles to help set the record straight.

Have minimum wage increases in Ontario demonstrably driven up inflation? No.

In the case of the Ontario $15 minimum wage the moral imperative is just as great as the economic

A report that analyzed every minimum-wage hike since 1938 should put a bunch of nonsense ideas to rest

The 1960s backlash over the minimum wage

Relax, Ontario’s minimum wage increase will not lead to massive job losses

Tim Hortons brew-haha shows how the fast-food industry doesn’t get PR, Economics 101, or what Canadians think

Media get it wrong on Bank of Canada minimum wage study

Why Tim Hortons doesn’t deserve your sympathy

If Denmark has no minimum wage laws, should Canada follow suit?

From minimum wages to homelessness, New Year's scenes from the class struggle in Ontario




Monday, January 29, 2018

An interview with NDP Parliamentary Leader Guy Caron

by Ammario Reza

In the federal NDP timeline, we find ourselves at the beginning of a new year in 2018, rounding up the first quarter since the federal NDP leadership race four months ago that was ultimately won by Jagmeet Singh on the first ballot.

Since then, Singh’s former leadership opponent Guy Caron has been appointed as Parliamentary NDP Leader, and has basically been leading the orange team’s charge in the House of Commons against the Liberal government. Singh, as he does not yet have a seat in parliament, continues to promote the party brand by cross-touring the country.

With a policy convention happening in Ottawa next month to kick off the next chapter in the party’s history, it seemed like a good time to check in with Caron to hear his thoughts on the current landscape, and what he sees, going forward, with his finger on the pulse of the NDP on many fronts -- from his relationship with Jagmeet Singh, to Ruth Ellen Brosseau’s promotion to House Leader recently, provincial governments and Basic Income, the attempt to revive a provincial NDP in Quebec and their new leader, and much more.

Here is how our conversation went:

Ammario Reza (AR) talks with Parliamentary NDP Leader Guy Caron (GC) January 26, 2018:

A.R: So, basically… you’ve gone through your first quarter as the de facto leader of the NDP in Parliament. And, it has been said, during the summer, that should Jagmeet Singh win the party leadership, this could present the NDP with difficulties (in Quebec specifically, where just under a third of the party’s caucus comes from - and is incidentally where your seat is located).

Bearing that, and based on recent and ongoing debate on religious neutrality and the general perception that Quebec voters are the least receptive to politicians who they feel are overtly religious ... where do you see that going?

G.C: Well, I'm not sure that I would agree with the fact that Quebecers, by in large, are... that it's a problem for them to actually see a leader that wears religious symbols. Of course, there will be some, but I know that with Jagmeet -- and I've experienced this by going to Alma (Quebec) with him for the by-election in Lac-Saint-Jean -- that people actually want to hear what he has to say.

When we walked through a shopping centre (and this was not planned - it was just to get back through to an event we had) people recognized him. People wanted to talk to him. There are issues that people wanted to talk to him about, from veteran issues to their pensions. The recognition-factor was there. So, I think people want to, over and above the ‘religious symbols’,  as you are saying…  people want to hear what he has to say. One big opportunity we will have, eventually is.. I’m pretty sure he will be appearing on Tout le monde en parle, which is basically the biggest show you have to be on to get known in Quebec, and that will be his first chance to make a real first impression on Quebecers.

A.R: In the past, the NDP often picked their leaders and strategies that treated a concentration on Quebec or western and anglo-Canada as kind of an irreconcilable dichotomy. Do you feel like your appointment to the role of Parliamentary Leader, and with yesterday’s news of Ruth-Ellen Brosseau as House Leader; do you think that was mostly about a strategic move to signal to voters - especially Quebec voters - that the party’s focus would not be shifting away from Quebec, despite the devastating losses of the 2015 election?

G.C: Well, I’m not sure that it is, so much, a political calculation. Of course, the Quebec caucus is - well, it’s the largest regional caucus in the NDP. We have 16 MPs - that’s basically a third of our MPs in the caucus. It’s obvious there will be some room for more Quebec MPs, and I don’t think - with the NDP, generally speaking, especially since Jack (Layton) ...well, this is something we are seeing with Jagmeet right now, that there is a sensitivity and an ensuring that there is a good balance all over the country on key roles. So, Ruth Ellen, I can speak to no end about Ruth Ellen’s value to the caucus, and her value as a politician, and as a person. I have tremendous respect for everything she’s achieved. She’s one of those MPs who not only is a wonderful riding MP - she’s loved in her riding - but she’s done amazing work on the Hill.

I do think it’s perfectly deserved for her to actually graduate in this way. She’s evolved from the agricultural file. Just to give you an example: once she was elected, she was named as the Deputy Critic for Agriculture, and she didn’t have that much knowledge on agriculture, and basically after a year she came to my riding - which is largely agricultural - and she basically spoke the language of farmers and agricultural workers. So, she learns very fast. She is tremendously respected in caucus and outside caucus. I do think this is why we are in the condition of where she is now, and it’s a promotion she fully deserves. And Peter [Julian] has done amazing work on this, as he has done before, during the leadership race, a wonderful job as House Leader. Peter’s role is so crucial, in one sense, especially to me, as an economist. He will be handling the very critical Finance portfolio. Especially when we’re talking about income-inequality and where policies on tax-havens will be crucial. And, somebody with Peter’s skills will be amazing to have in front of the camera and otherwise.

A.R: Ok, well, I guess I would ask: have you seen much reception in terms of policy ideas from the Singh camp, so far? Other than appointing you as Parliamentary Leader? Like, the optics are one thing, but have you seen actual reception in terms of policy?”

G.C: Most of what we went through in October, November and December was really a transition. I mean, we had lots of people to replace, and that’s also the case in the research department of the Parliamentary offices, with a few key staffers during the race going to British Columbia, because there were new job openings there with the new government. So, there’s been much emphasis on the transition, and I believe that this winter we’ll start putting forth those ideas - especially in the context of the upcoming policy convention we’ll have in Ottawa in February.

I think that convention will play a big role in establishing or coordinating with Jagmeet and his team’s ideas in terms of the policies put forth. So, I expect that the policy convention will play a big role, and that we’re at a situation now where it will be much easier.

A.R: Do you really think so? Because, policy conventions... at the end of the day, aren’t things just decided in the small circle of the leadership? Or is that going to change?

G.C: Well, you don’t do an election, or platform for an election, the same way that you do a policy convention. But, policy conventions are important to give a sense of direction that the party will be heading towards, too. In a convention, it’s also that you have a sense of what the leader wants to implement - via his ideas. When looking at various directions, I hope he recognizes by also looking at the various guest speakers that we’ll have. The keynote speakers will usually be selected because they will be able to help shape the policy direction that we’ll be following. So, a policy convention is not only about resolutions. It is about resolutions, but not only [resolutions]. It’s also a place where we can start putting some meat on the ideas that might very well sound attractive.

A.R: So you think there will be an actual general direction to the party after the convention?

G.C: Oh yeah, this is something that is being built. It’s going to be built before, and the policy convention will be some sort of a landmark in the process. And, obviously, after the policy convention we’ll be basically in the countdown to the following election. That way, by March, we’ll have basically a year and a half before the road to the next election. So, we need to actually start doing that now, and I know that Jagmeet and his team are very aware of that.

A.R: Right. So, the Liberal government. Is it somewhat harder to criticize a government that self-identifies as ‘progressive’ than it would have been, say, a conservative government?

G.C: It’s kind of strange, because when the Conservatives were the government, we were the Official Opposition and basically the Liberals were copying us. Everything we were doing, they were doing, basically to set themselves up as ‘progressives’.

Now they form government, and in terms of the two major opposition groups - you can’t get them confused: the Conservatives want to try to get the Liberals to go more to the right, and us, we’re on the progressive side of the Liberals. And, I think in that situation right now, we can actually decide by looking at the Liberals and what they are doing, and especially what they are not doing on very important files, like .. electoral reform was one of them. But, look at Phoenix. Look at the inaction on tax-havens. There are so many files where the Liberals are actually disappointing that it gives us the opportunity for focusing on what we are, and especially proposing ideas and directions that the Liberals refuse to take right now. So, when we were both [Liberals and the NDP] as opposition it was easier to confuse the Liberals with us. But now, with the Liberals as government, and basically not doing what they should be doing as a so-called progressive party it’s up to us to demonstrate that we are the progressive option.

A.R: So, you’d mentioned tax-havens. Can you talk a little bit about corporate greed, tax-havens, and specifically things like how the U.S kind of went after the KPMG files, for example, while Canada really didn’t. Why are the Liberals so seemingly reluctant to take any action on that?”

G.C: Because they are the Bay Street party. It’s plain and simple. They are the party that has prioritized that and will always be the party that panders to wealthy Canadians. In that sense, the Conservatives are doing it because of the ideology, and the Liberals do it because - using basically, their love of power. Or, closeness to power. KPMG in Canada, the situation was very similar to what we had in the U.S, but the government not only refused to do anything, but this perplexed the established order - and that makes no sense. Especially at the point where we are seeing all the leaks. We have, basically, the Paradise Papers. We have the Panama Papers. We have the Swiss leaks. We have an idea now what we need to be doing, and the government is trying to create just some smoke and mirrors. We are following what’s happening and what’s being done internationally in trying to bring more transparency. Yet, we’re following a very very weak direction or very weak policies that are being established. We need to be more forceful. And, you will not be able to solve the issue of tax-havens on your own, true, but you can actually demonstrate leadership on the international scene, the international front. And, ensuring that we coordinate our actions with our partners in the OECD. I’m sure that we’ll be more forceful, rather than blind to the interests of the wealthy and the one percent.

A.R: Speaking of which: income-inequality. You are well-known for your Basic Income proposal. With a provincial election coming up in Ontario, I just want to ask you: Does a Basic Income lose its progressiveness if it’s provincial, or if it is provincially administered? Does that open it up just to attacks from certain parts of the political spectrum, or does it actually become right-wing?”

G.C: Well, it’s not the jurisdiction that traces its political orientation, if you want. It’s really the way that it is conceived. You’re talking about Ontario now. Quebec is now talking about a Guaranteed Income, which basically is just a re-jiggling and an increase of social-assistance for those who are unable to work. That’s not Basic Income. That’s not UBI (Universal Basic Income). It’s not. But, the government is trying to basically brand some initiatives that they are coming up with, and calling it this creates confusion. There is no sense that - there is no...what Quebec is proposing - and it hasn’t been implemented yet, is not a Basic Income. No one would call it this way. And what’s happening in Ontario is a pilot program, which basically replaces some elements of social-assistance and disability payments and puts the programs into one program which they call Minimum Income.

A.R: Would you be opposed to that?

G.C: Well, I don’t like the direction that they are taking, because basically they are replacing a program right now. And, they are not even giving - with the introduction of their Basic Income - the amount that they need to basically reach the low-income cut-off. So, that - to me - is problematic. If you are implementing Basic Income, you have to implement it in a way that it will leave no one under poverty. What I think the Ontario experiment, once it’s finished in 3 years, will be useful [for] is bringing us some data. And we’ll have a better idea of the impact that it will have. But, let’s not forget this is only a pilot program, like we are seeing all around the world. And, strangely enough, it’s being implemented one year before an election. **Laughs**

So, I do believe that we have to have a significant discussion on Basic Income, and not as a replacement for a couple of programs. Really, on the place it will have for people in this country to fight poverty and also to address the very concerning issues of E.I and increased automation of our economy.

A.R: Right. Two very quick last things: Abortion funding. Yesterday, the Liberals did - um, the Canada Summer Jobs program and the caveat that they inserted that groups be pro-reproductive rights. Knowing that this is a decision that probably the majority of NDP members would actually agree with, the NDP came out yesterday and actually blasted this decision. Is this a trap that the Liberals set up for the Tories that the NDP has now just managed to walk into?

G.C: Well, I will correct you here. What you are referring to is the headline that we’ve seen in the media about Nathan [Cullen]. He actually apologized for the way it came. And, there’s no way that the NDP will be supporting anti-choice provisions or money being distributed to anti-choice causes. That goes as far as the summer employment [program] or any other program at the federal level.

A.R: Ok, well that clears it up… *Laughs*

G.C: Yup, that’s basically it.

A.R: Ok, final thing being: You’re from Quebec. You live in Quebec. And there is - the NDPQ and Raphael Fortin. I mean - on the one hand, I get it. There’s a … I think he said ‘it’s time to give the’ ...I think he called them the ‘political orphans of Quebec a home’. But, sovereignty is not really an issue right now in Quebec. So, is this….like, why? Why do this now? Will you be voting for NDPQ? And why not work with Quebec Solidaire instead?

G.C: Well, there are some that are... but...we wish them good luck. But, we are not… As a caucus, as a party, especially with what happened in Quebec for so very long, we have no affiliation in Quebec. We can have likeness in terms of policies, but those parties are different. The NDPQ and the [federal] NDP are not affiliated the way it is across the country. So, I do wish them good luck, but we’ll see if there is demand and if there is an operational market for such a party. But there will not be any such direction coming from our party that we need to support one party or another in Quebec. I know that, in some parts of Quebec, there is a very common base between Quebec Solidaire and the NDP in terms of their base of activists and people helping. In some other places, it might be the NDPQ, so at this point, we’ll just wish them good luck. But, I do conduct all my challenges federally and that’s where we’ll be focusing.

A.R: So, you don’t think people are going to think they’re synonymous?

G.C: I’m sorry..?

A.R: You don’t think people are going to look at the NDPQ and the federal NDP and think they’re synonymous, and that would kind of...

G.C: It’s possible, because some people were…. the new leader, for example, was a candidate for us federally and was in the leadership race with a former MP.  So, while there is some handling that will be basically similar... so, there will be some that will think there is affiliation, but at the end of the day, there is no formal affiliation at this point. So, as I said, we will be concentrating federally, because we have an election to prepare for in a year and a half.

A.R: OK. Well, thank you very much, Guy Caron, for doing this.

G.C: My pleasure, thank you very much.

Ammario Reza is the co-founder of NDP Grassroots-Ralliement populaire NPD, with a background in Political Science. He is a writer, commentator and activist primarily based in Ottawa. He works varying contract positions for various NDP and other progressive campaigns, in addition to being a liaison for author Linda McQuaig's speaking engagements.

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Send them to The Left Chapter via theleftchapter@outlook.com!


Sunday, January 28, 2018

Patrick Brown, Holocaust Revisionism, the Arctic and more -- The Left Chapter Sunday Reading List January 21 - 28

This week's list of articles, news items and opinion pieces that I see as must reads if you are looking for a roundup that should be of interest to The Left Chapter readers.

This list covers the week of  January 21-28. It is generally in order of the date of the article's release.


This installment has three entries from before the period. They have been integrated into the post.

1) Let's call the pro-lifers what they are: pro-death

Barbara Ehrenreich and Alissa Quart

On the 45th anniversary of Roe v Wade, it’s time to highlight a hidden truth: restricting abortion means more maternal deaths.

Read the full article.

2) The Fake Feminism Of The #MeToo Backlash

Claire Fallon, Huffington Post

The #MeToo backlash ― much predicted, fitfully rehearsed ― arrived in earnest this week, disguised as feminism. The pretext: a messily written story published on Saturday on Babe.net, about a woman’s coercive sexual encounter with comedian Aziz Ansari.

Read the full article.

3) Naomi Parker Fraley, the Real Rosie the Riveter, Dies at 96

Margalit Fox, The New York Times

Unsung for seven decades, the real Rosie the Riveter was a California waitress named Naomi Parker Fraley.

Read the full article.

4) Ursula K. Le Guin, Acclaimed for Her Fantasy Fiction, Is Dead at 88

Gerald Jonas, The New York Times

Ursula K. Le Guin, the immensely popular author who brought literary depth and a tough-minded feminist sensibility to science fiction and fantasy with books like “The Left Hand of Darkness” and the Earthsea series, died on Monday at her home in Portland, Ore. She was 88.

Read the full article.

5) Kid Rock’s NHL All-Star Game show undercuts hockey’s message of inclusiveness

Satchel Price, SB Nation

For a lot of hockey fans, that’s a slap in the face. It’s another sign that all these initiatives and fancy nights where players use rainbow sticks during warmups mean little until the rest of the league’s actions back up its words. The idea of celebrating Hockey Is For Everyone month days after having a Michigan native who loves the Confederate flag play your marquee event is dumbfounding.

Read the full article.


6) I Refused to Believe Tel Aviv Has Segregated Preschools – Until I Visited One

Orly Vilnai, Haaretz

We didn’t want to believe the woman from north Tel Aviv who told us about the segregation. We thought she was imagining things when she said there are separate preschools for black and white children in the Tel Aviv neighborhood of Tzahala. But she was insistent. So we went to the Tzahala preschool compound and kept going back and forth between the classrooms as the unbelievable sights gradually sank in: One preschool was filled with white children; the other with black children. In Israel, 2018.

Read the full article.

7) The 1960s backlash over the minimum wage

Jamie Bradburn, TVO

When the provincial government introduced hourly minimum-wage legislation in 1963, opponents of the move predicted doomsday scenarios. Diners going under. Staffing reductions. Costs passed on to consumers. Implementation of minimum tabs. And, worst of all, the demise of the 10-cent cup of coffee, a staple since the Second World War. “After all,” Dalton Waller, president of the Canadian Restaurant Association, observed in an interview with the Toronto Daily Star, “this is an industry that takes in many unskilled people, folks who don’t speak the Queen’s English or any English.” Waller also warned: “You start paying it to the fellow who does menial tasks and pretty soon everyone above him feels they ought to get more too.”

Read the full article.

8) If Denmark has no minimum wage laws, should Canada follow suit?

Tom Parkin, The Toronto Sun

It’s true the Nordic social democracies do spectacularly well without a minimum wage law. And if Canada was a social democracy, abolishing minimum wage laws would be brilliant. Until then, using laws to promote shared prosperity is the smartest tool we’ve got.

Read the full article.


9) Communist Party demands anti-austerity budget for Ontario

Communist Party of Ontario

The Communist Party of Canada (Ontario) has produced a comprehensive submission to Ontario’s 2018 Pre-Budget Consultations, calling explicitly for an end to austerity and privatization, and demanding a budget for full employment, expanded public services, equality, and progressive tax reform. The CPC(O) notes the devastating impact austerity policies have had on the working class – rapid and widespread growth of precarious employment, plant closures resulting in over 8000 jobs lost, lost wages and benefits, deep cuts to programs, and soaring costs for services including child care and tuition. At the same time, corporate profits have spiked, rising from $156 billion in 2008 to a projected $306 billion for 2017. Profits The Royal Bank of Canada alone announced a profit of $11.5 billion for the third quarter of 2017.

Read the full statement.

10) ROBERT DE NIRO ACCUSED OF EXPLOITING HURRICANE IRMA TO BUILD RESORT IN BARBUDA

Naomi Klein & Alleen Brown,  The Intercept

A CHORUS OF VOICES from the Caribbean island of Barbuda is accusing Robert De Niro of being part of a backroom effort to exploit a devastating hurricane to fundamentally change the island’s communal land ownership law in the interest of developers — changes opposed by many Barbudans, but which could aid the actor’s controversial plans to build a large luxury resort called Paradise Found Nobu.

Read the full article.


11) Men Only: Inside the charity fundraiser where hostesses are put on show


Madison Marriage, Financial Times

A furore has erupted over a men-only fundraising dinner in London for the Presidents Club charity after an FT investigation revealed hostesses at the event were groped, sexually harassed and propositioned. Here is the FT coverage of the event and its aftermath.

Read the full article.

12) Most wealth gained last year went to richest 1%, Oxfam says

The Associated Press

A CEO from one of the world's top five global fashion brands has to work for just four days to earn what a garment worker in Bangladesh will earn in an entire lifetime, campaigning group Oxfam International said Monday.

Read the full article.

13) Is There A Ticking Time Bomb Under The Arctic?

Michaeleen Doucleff, NPR

A short drive north of Fairbanks, Alaska, there's a red shed stuck right up against a hillside. The shed looks unremarkable, except for the door. It looks like a door to a walk-in freezer, with thick insulation and a heavy latch. Whatever is behind that door needs to stay very cold.

Read the full article.

14) If you're going to blame a cyberattack on North Korea, you better show your work

Matthew Braga, CBC News

Figuring out who's behind a cyberattack is hard — something that cybersecurity experts will tell you time and time again.

Read the full article.

15) In 2018 Porn Is An Industry: And It’s Not Sex That’s Being Sold, It’s Abuse

Tom Farr, Medium

As per the trend so far, it will become increasingly abusive and violent in order to remain relevant and profitable, and what for? We don’t need pornography, and nor should we want it. Sexual exploration can happen between two adults without the prior need for a video of a poorly paid (increasingly young) woman suffering physical and verbal abuse to “inspire” us. If third-wave, liberal leftist men truly believe in equality, then it’s high time they start rejecting the things that only reinforce inequality. It’s time we start expecting more for ourselves, and better of ourselves.

Read the full article.

16) Female OPP employees say they’re being paid far less than uniformed police doing the same work

Wendy Gillis, The Toronto Star

Dozens of female Ontario Provincial Police civilian employees are alleging systemic, gender-based discrimination by the province’s largest police service, claiming they have for years been paid salaries far lower than their predominantly male, uniformed police colleagues performing the same or comparable work.

Read the full article.

17) Kap Snubbed by NFL Campaign, Named Finalist For Players Award

Telesur

The ex-quarterback and four other players are finalists for the NFL Players Association’s (NFLPA) Byron “Whizzer” White Community MVP award, according to NBC Sports. Surprisingly, Kaepernick was named a nominee after spending the entire season as a free agent. Contrastingly, the NFL announced, on Tuesday, its “Let’s Listen Together” campaign – which was launched to highlight a commitment to social justice and equality, but without a single reference to Kaepernick.

Read the full article.

18) White Evangelicals, This is Why People Are Through With You

John Pavlovitz

I know it’s likely you’ll dismiss these words. The fact that you’ve even made your bed with such malevolence, shows how far gone you are and how insulated you are from the reality in front of you.

Read the full article.


19) Give The Finger Back To Anti-Transit King Street Business Owners

Davide Mastracci, The Huffington Post

King Street is open, but the time where business owners could bully the city is hopefully coming to a close. If these businesses can't keep up with the changing city, so be it. They shouldn't be allowed to drag commuters down with them.

Read the full article.

20) The Rise of a New Left in Chile?

Manuel Larrabure and Fernando Leiva, NACLA

Building on the student-led mass protests of 2006 and 2011, a newly forming leftist coalition in Chile is well-positioned to challenge Sebastián Piñera’s incoming right-wing administration.

Read the full article.

21) US Embassy Shuttered as Thousands in Haiti Protest Trump's "Shithole" Remarks

Jon Queally, Common Dreams

"We are here today to let President Donald Trump know that we declare him persona non grata in Haiti," declared protest leader and human rights attorney Mario Joseph.

Read the full article.

22) Companies which don't recognise unions could be stripped of government contracts under Labour

Kevin Schofield, Politics Home

Companies which do not recognise trade unions are among those which could be stripped of public sector contracts under a Labour government.

Read the full article.

23) Nova Scotia PC Leader Jamie Baillie forced out over allegations of 'inappropriate behaviour'

CBC News

Jamie Baillie has been forced out as leader of Nova Scotia's Progressive Conservative Party following an investigation into "allegations of inappropriate behaviour."

Read the full article.

24) Sexual advances by Patrick Brown left woman feeling 'anxious,' she tells CBC News

Mike Crawley & Amara McLaughlin, CBC News

Patrick Brown allegedly made sexual advances toward a teenage staffer who was drunk and nearly half his age during his time as a federal MP, according to one of two women whose accusations of sexual misconduct led to his resignation as leader of Ontario's Progressive Conservative Party early Thursday. 

Read the full article.


25) Why did Patrick Brown evoke his sisters in his defence?


Shree Paradkar, The Toronto Star

Why do men need their daughters and sisters and wives to serve as moral compasses? Why do they view women as relationally earning the right to protection? Shree Paradkar writes.

Read the full article.

26) Powerful men laid low by the hour: #MeToo remaking society literally overnight

John Ibbitson, The Globe and Mail

But the public square is not a court. And everyone of good will stands today with those who say: Enough. No more. No more fine words and fancy declarations that protected no one. No more lip service to equality, even as the man presses himself against the girl or boy – frozen, terrified, not knowing what to do.

Read the full article.


27) How Patrick Brown went so quickly from Ontario PC Leader to yesterday’s man

Adam Radwanski, The Globe and Mail

Politics is not a court of law. People who seek jobs at the highest level of public life do so knowing they will be held to a higher standard. Mr. Brown's implicit promise to his party, when he sought its leadership, was that he could meet that standard. They now have specific evidence he could not.

Read the full article.


28) Vic Fedeli interim leader for Ontario PCs

The Canadian Press

Fedeli, 61, was selected by the PC caucus during a morning meeting and it’s not immediately clear if he will stay on to fight the spring election at the head of the party.

Read the full article.

29) Sport Minister Kent Hehr resigns from Trudeau cabinet amid sexual harassment allegations

 Kathleen Harris, CBC News

Federal Sport and Disabilities Minister Kent Hehr has resigned from cabinet pending an investigation into allegations of sexual harassment.

Read the full article.

30) Woman faces death threats after alleging sexual harassment by Kent Hehr

Emma Graney, The Calgary Herald

“I can’t go home tonight, because I’m worried about what will happen to me,” Raworth said Saturday.

Read the full article.


31) Democrats Paid a Huge Price for Letting Unions Die

Eric Levitz,  New York Magazine

The GOP understands how important labor unions are to the Democratic Party. The Democratic Party, historically, has not. If you want a two-sentence explanation for why the Midwest is turning red (and thus, why Donald Trump is president), you could do worse than that.

Read the full article.

32) Trudeau Suggests E.I. For Sears Workers Who Risk Losing Pensions

Daniel Tencer, Huffington Post

Gee, thanks.

Read the full article.


33) Senior UN figures under investigation over alleged sexual harassment

Rebecca Ratcliffe, The Guardian

World Food Programme official suspended pending inquiry as UNAids declines to comment on scrutiny of deputy director.

Read the full article.

34) Czech Republic re-elects far-right president Miloš Zeman

Robert Tait, The Guardian

Anti-immigrant and pro-Putin leader takes decisive victory over liberal opponent Jiří Drahoš.

Read the full article.

35) Hungary Jews angered by rightwing memorial on Holocaust day

AFP

Hungary’s main Jewish organization lashed out Wednesday against a senior member of the ruling Fidesz party for participating in a memorial for a Nazi-allied wartime leader to be held on a Holocaust remembrance day.

Read the full article.

36) Polish Parliament's Lower House Votes to Criminalize Mention of Polish Crimes in the Holocaust

Ofer Aderet and Noa Landau, Haaretz

The lower house of the Polish parliament has approved a controversial bill that would forbid any mention of participation of the "Polish nation" in crimes committed during the Holocaust. The bill would also bar use of the term "Polish death camp" to describe the death camps where Jews and others were murdered in Nazi-occupied Poland during the Second World War.

Read the full article.

37) Jeremy Corbyn announces Labour will buy every homeless person in the country a house 

Kate McCann, The Telegraph

Labour will buy every homeless person in the UK a house if the party is elected, Jeremy Corbyn has announced.

Read the full article.

See also: Martin Luther King Jr., Unifor, #MeToo and more -- The Left Chapter Sunday Reading List January 14-21

See also: Tim Hortons, BDS and Israel, Donald Trump and more -- The Left Chapter Sunday Reading List January 7 - 14

Saturday, January 27, 2018

USSR Today -- Education, 1975 w. photos Part II

Vintage Leftist Leaflet Project

See the end of this post for details on the project.

Leaflet: USSR Today -- Education, 1975 Part II

One of the most remarkable achievements in the history of the modern world was the feat that the Soviet Union accomplished in building an extensive and free educational system that dragged its republics and peoples out of a state of neo-feudalism, mass ignorance and illiteracy. 

As you will read they overcame levels of literacy that in some cases were less than 1% of the population to have literacy rates that were virtually at 100% by the 70s. This was done in every republic and among every people in the USSR. 

In the cauldron of imperialist encirclement, civil war, one of the most destructive invasions in history and internal disruptions, the USSR built an education system from kindergarten to university that should have been the envy of the world but for the propaganda efforts in the west to deny its reality. 

The Soviets through their collective efforts built one of the most educated societies on Earth.

This leaflet, released in 1975, provides a history of the evolution of education in the Soviet Union as well as the plans they had at the time for the future.

We have divided the post into two parts. The first one had an overview and looked at early childhood education to the Soviet equivalent of high school. This second part looks vocational schools and higher education as well as at issues facing the system at the time.

(Click on scans to enlarge)











































When The Left Chapter began part of what I wanted to do on the blog was to show and highlight vintage public leftist election/political leaflets and booklets. While many of these have been offered with commentary to date, a very large collection of hundreds of them from several different sources remains and to preserve these often quite rare documents we will be posting them on a regular (almost daily) basis now often without or with minimal commentary so that people may have access to them as quickly as possible as an historical resource. 

While these will all be leaflets from a variety of different leftist viewpoints and countries, they are being posted as an historical/study resource and the views or opinions expressed in them do not necessarily reflect the views of this blog or blogger.

All of these posts (as well as posts made to date) will be listed on the page: Vintage Communist/Socialist Leaflets (which is still being updated with past posts).

If you have any public, vintage leaflets or booklets you would like to contribute to this project please contact us via theleftchapter@outlook.com

Friday, January 26, 2018

USSR Today -- Education, 1975 w. photos Part I

Vintage Leftist Leaflet Project

See the end of this post for details on the project.

Leaflet: USSR Today -- Education, 1975 

One of the most remarkable achievements in the history of the modern world was the feat that the Soviet Union accomplished in building an extensive and free educational system that dragged its republics and peoples out of a state of neo-feudalism, mass ignorance and illiteracy. 

As you will read they overcame levels of literacy that in some cases were less than 1% of the population to have literacy rates that were virtually at 100% by the 70s. This was done in every republic and among every people in the USSR. 

In the cauldron of imperialist encirclement, civil war, one of the most destructive invasions in history and internal disruptions, the USSR built an education system from kindergarten to university that should have been the envy of the world but for the propaganda efforts in the west to deny its reality. 

The Soviets through their collective efforts built one of the most educated societies on Earth.

This leaflet, released in 1975, provides a history of the evolution of education in the Soviet Union as well as the plans they had at the time for the future.


We have divided the post into two parts, this first one with an overview and looking at early childhood education to the Soviet equivalent of high school. The next part will look at higher education.


(Click on scan to enlarge)







































When The Left Chapter began part of what I wanted to do on the blog was to show and highlight vintage public leftist election/political leaflets and booklets. While many of these have been offered with commentary to date, a very large collection of hundreds of them from several different sources remains and to preserve these often quite rare documents we will be posting them on a regular (almost daily) basis now often without or with minimal commentary so that people may have access to them as quickly as possible as an historical resource. 

While these will all be leaflets from a variety of different leftist viewpoints and countries, they are being posted as an historical/study resource and the views or opinions expressed in them do not necessarily reflect the views of this blog or blogger.

All of these posts (as well as posts made to date) will be listed on the page: Vintage Communist/Socialist Leaflets (which is still being updated with past posts).

If you have any public, vintage leaflets or booklets you would like to contribute to this project please contact us via theleftchapter@outlook.com