Something In The Water

Jonathan Kay Canadian Journalist

BCL on the chutzpah of Jonathan Kay, junk science enabler debunker:

[T]here’s a real lack of self-awareness here.  Jonathon [sic], after all,  is comment pages editor at the National Post, and under his watch it has for years entertained  junk science from Global Warming deniers.  Sometimes this nonsense has been confined to the OpEd pages; sometimes its made the news, and sometimes the claims have been so egregiously false that defamation suits have been the result.

And as I have written on several occasions, you can’t open the floodgates a little way.  You can’t set teh crazy just a little bit free. When you start smearing a particular scientific field, you get mud over the whole edifice.

Record-Breaking Canadian Job Losses in January

by matttbastard

Happy Job Catastrophe Friday:

The recession hit home where Canadians live last month as a massive 129,000 workers joined the ranks of the unemployed and the country’s jobless rate surged to 7.2 per cent.

It was the worst monthly employment drop in at least three decades, topping figures seen in either of the two previous recessions in the 1980s and 1990s.

Almost all the jobs were full-time and were mostly in a battered manufacturing sector that has been most affected by the severe downturn in the United States.

The carnage was everywhere. Ontario shed 71,000 jobs, half in the manufacturing sector. British Columbia and Quebec workers were also hit hard with losses of 35,000 and 26,000 respectively.

Since October, when most economists say the global recession hit Canada’s shores, the country has lost a whopping 213,000 jobs, wiping out a year’s gains.

Somebody get Guinness on the horn — Statistics Canada calls this “the largest employment decrease since the agency began keeping what it described as comparable figures in 1976.”  Highly “regrettable” hemorrhaging, as hapless Finance Minister Jim Flaherty blandly  put it last night.  Understatement as performance art — I love our (probationary!) Conservative government.

And let’s not be Negative Nancys.  Displaying that keen sense of priorities that sets apart the Queensway elite from the scrum, Chantal Hebert proudly reports that civility has finally returned to the House of Commons, welcome news that should help salve the pain of economic woes.  Try not to rejoice too boisterously (not that y’all can, um, afford to celebrate with anything more extravegant than a bottle of Baby Duck and a box of Kraft Dinner).

Anyway, here’s hoping those 129,000 newly unemployed individuals are all eligible for EI.

Recommend this post at Progressive Bloggers

What’s At Stake

by matttbastard

While Ottawa smolders with inflamed partisanship, CP reports that Canada shed 70,600 jobs in November, the highest monthly job loss figures since 1982, when the country was mired in a deep recession (as opposed to a ‘technical’ recession *cough*). Guess which province (and sector) overwhelmingly bore the brunt of the bleeding?

Yep:

Ontario shed 66,000 jobs last month, leading the country to the largest decline since the deep recession of 1982.

The province’s losses pushed the unemployment rate to 7.1 per cent from 6.5 per cent the previous month. Overall, 70,600 jobs were chopped across the country.

The battered manufacturing sector was mostly responsible for the job bleeding in Ontario with a decline of 42,000. That took the factory sector’s share of employment in the province to 13 per cent – down from 18.2 per cent six years ago.

Gee, too bad our prime minister concluded the most prudent step to address the economy was to lock the doors of parliament, at a time when stability and leadership is absolutely vital if we are to maintain public confidence in an increasingly unstable economic landscape. All because Stephen Harper apparently values his own job security over that of the nation. Oh, and I hope you all will excuse me for being a little skeptical of Tony Clement’s MacGyver-like creativity in the midst of a crisis in the auto industry.

Enjoy your fire alarm vacation, Steve. We’ll see you on the 26th. Of January.

Related: Is changing the government without an election “undemocratic”, as Harper and Co. have repeatedly claimed? Of course not. So maybe someone should pass the message along to Bob Fife.

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Read this now (The honeymoon is over)

by matttbastard

Renee of Womanist Musings is guestblogging at Feministe for the next two weeks. Her inaugural post is a must-read:

When you think of the Niagara region immediately the mind turns to the majestic falls. Some who have spent more than an afternoon here will think of places like the Welland Canal, The Skylon Tower, Fallsview Casino, Clifton Hill, and maybe even the dearth of reasonably priced hotels, and restaurants. The aforementioned sites are the Niagara region you are supposed to think about. It is what you will find printed in all of those handy little pamphlets, that the tour guides like to give out. Yes the safe family destination, where everything is bright and sunny. What you will not hear about are the women that have been killed here since 1996.

I know y’all can’t help but go and read the rest. Is hard going due to the subject matter–trigger warnings most definitely apply–but is a vital endeavour. Go.

Recommend this post at Progressive Blogger