Activism

Overview of Detroit Industry, North Wall, 1932-33, fresco by Diego Rivera. Detroit Institute of Arts. 
Diego Rivera

“In Seasons Such as These,” A Word on Socialism

April 15, 2020 at 11:04 am

  “Not even the apparently enlightened principle of the ‘greatest good for the greatest number’ can excuse indifference to individual suffering.” — Aneurin Bevan, In Place of Fear   “Poor naked wretches, wheresoe’er, That bide the pelting of this pitiless storm, How shall your houseless heads and unfed sides…defend youRead More

Biological hazard symbol (Andux, CC by SA 3.0 https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/deed.en, via Wikimedia Commons)

Plagues in Perspective

April 1, 2020 at 12:51 pm

“…it is hard to say who is sick and who is well…” — Daniel Defoe, Journal of the Plague Year   The coronavirus pandemic poses a clear and present danger to the most elderly and vulnerable segments of the global population, those already most prone to perish from influenza and other infectiousRead More

Students reading in class, Leflore County Schools. (Carl Albert Research and Studies Center, Congressional Collection / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)

Educated for Life?

March 8, 2020 at 12:35 pm

As of this writing, elementary and high school teachers in Ontario are embroiled in an escalating dispute with Premier Doug Ford’s government. Teachers have held a number of one-day strikes and, I understand, have many more planned. While the government has been putting forward a narrative that consists of theRead More

Foreign Policy Generation

Generation ‘Why War?’

March 4, 2020 at 2:34 pm

 “…the car, still loaded with people, made a wide U-turn and stopped; it was the end of the line.”– Paul Bowles, last words of The Sheltering Sky It was my Grandfather’s favorite story, and he swore it was true: a man horribly lost in a maze of back roads, unableRead More

McNeil on Wet’suwet’en Support Actions: ‘It’s Not the Mi’kmaq’

McNeil on Wet’suwet’en Support Actions: ‘It’s Not the Mi’kmaq’

February 19, 2020 at 12:53 pm

Premier Stephen McNeil has been visiting Nova Scotia Chambers of Commerce — Halifax, Yarmouth, Sydney — to discuss the State of the Province with people who have paid to listen to him. The Sydney event — a Cape Breton Regional Chamber of Commerce “member-exclusive” gathering (billed as a ‘fireside’ discussionRead More

Pope Francis meets a resident of the "Palace of the Poor" (Source: Community of Sant'Egidio https://www.santegidio.org/pageID/1/langID/en/idLng/1064/HOME.html)

Pope Francis: Right and Wrong

February 19, 2020 at 12:49 pm

I will give Pope Francis a tip of the biretta for his latest act on behalf of some of the poorest of the poor in Rome, or as he refers to them “society’s rejects, victims of today’s throwaway culture.” He has turned the Palazzo Migliori, a 19th palace named forRead More

Trident II D5 nuclear missile (Photo by Ronald Gutridge/US Navy)

Grasping ‘the Significance of the Weapon’

February 5, 2020 at 1:32 pm

Never one to suffer subtlety gladly, or overpolish the written word, US President Donald J. Trump on January 3 ‘spoke’ to the world by tweet: an American flag, behind which, we soon learned, lay the body of Iranian General Qassam Suleimani (and seven other human beings), assassinated by drone inRead More

Why Do Climate Skeptics Distrust the Science?

Why Do Climate Skeptics Distrust the Science?

January 15, 2020 at 1:32 pm

Last month, I argued that, when we think in Marxist terms about the contradictions of capitalism, perhaps the most striking and important contradiction of all is that to make the goods bought and sold to keep the capitalist machine running we are destroying the very planet we depend upon forRead More

Photo of Dr. Margaret Fraser by Norma Jean MacPhee, CBC

Letter to the Editor: Something ‘Very, Very Wrong’ with CB Healthcare

January 8, 2020 at 12:45 pm

On December 23, amidst all the busyness leading up to Christmas Day, I was privileged to hear an outstanding interview broadcast on the national radio network of the CBC. The program was the public affairs daily The Current and the guest was the president of the Cape Breton Medical StaffRead More

Some of the 500, one-meter tall Karl Marx statues on display in Trier, Germany, 5 May 2013. (Photo by Pierre Wolfer https://www.flickr.com/photos/dewolfert/ CC BY-ND 2.0 https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/ via Flikr

Revisiting the Communist Manifesto

December 18, 2019 at 12:47 pm

Over the last few columns, I have been exploring our disordered relationship with our material possessions. One of the reasons that so many of us, even those of us who have limited incomes, can still accumulate too much stuff results from the fact that we live in a capitalist economyRead More