Democracy Gone Astray
Democracy, being a human construct, needs to be thought of as directionality rather than an object. As such, to understand it requires not so much a description of existing structures and/or other related phenomena but a declaration of intentionality.
This blog aims at creating labeled lists of published infringements of such intentionality, of points in time where democracy strays from its intended directionality. In addition to outright infringements, this blog also collects important contemporary information and/or discussions that impact our socio-political landscape.
All the posts here were published in the electronic media – main-stream as well as fringe, and maintain links to the original texts.
[NOTE: Due to changes I haven't caught on time in the blogging software, all of the 'Original Article' links were nullified between September 11, 2012 and December 11, 2012. My apologies.]
Monday, September 08, 2014
Finally good news out of Ukraine. After five months of fighting between government troops and pro-Russian separatists in the east of the country, representatives of both parties reached an agreement on Friday to end hostilities and negotiate a permanent settlement.
Author: The Huffington Post | By Charlotte Alfred
Author: The Huffington Post | By Charlotte Alfred
The Somali militants unanimously selected Ahmad Umar, also known as Abu Ubaidah, at a meeting in an undisclosed location in Somalia, said rebel commander Abu Mohammed.
In a video recorded by NYTrue, Teachout is seen approaching Cuomo and his staff amid a packed parade route. "Hey, how are you doing?" she says to Cuomo aide Joe Percoco.
The progressive Fordham Law professor then attempts to approach the governor, but the aide quickly blocks her way. When Teachout moved around the aide to try again, he blocks her once more. At one point in the video, Teachout extends her arm and said "Hi," before Cuomo turned his head to greet New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio.
A reporter asked Cuomo about the awkward encounter at an afternoon press conference.
"I know she was at the parade, but I didn't get a chance to talk to her," he responded.
Author: Igor Bobic
Netanyahu's hypocrisy was put on full display when he blamed Hamas for the abduction and gruesome murder of three Israeli teenagers, which subsequently led to the Gaza war, only to expropriate land in the West Bank to punish the Palestinian Authority.
Local officers, county deputies and state troopers were encouraged to act more aggressively in searching for suspicious people, drugs and other contraband. The departments of Homeland Security and Justice spent millions on police training.
But the recipient of the cash was not one of the many Beltway lobbying firms that work every year on behalf of foreign governments.
It was the Center for Global Development, a nonprofit research organization, or think tank, one of many such groups in Washington that lawmakers, government officials and the news media have long relied on to provide independent policy analysis and scholarship.
More than a dozen prominent Washington research groups have received tens of millions of dollars from foreign governments in recent years while pushing United States government officials to adopt policies that often reflect the donors’ priorities, an investigation by The New York Times has found.
The money is increasingly transforming the once-staid think-tank world into a muscular arm of foreign governments’ lobbying in Washington. And it has set off troubling questions about intellectual freedom: Some scholars say they have been pressured to reach conclusions friendly to the government financing the research.
Author: ERIC LIPTON, BROOKE WILLIAMS and NICHOLAS CONFESSORE
Education Minister Peter Fassbender said government negotiator Peter Cameron advised against such a move.
Fassbender issued a statement on Saturday saying he agreed, calling the teachers' union proposal a "another empty effort" to give parents and teachers "false hope."
In her scenario, students were told they had lost their jobs, their marriage had broken up, and they needed to find someplace to live. And they had to figure out a way to live on just $1,000 a month.
In a speech to business leaders at the Vancouver Board of Trade, Moore says its easier to sell goods internationally than interprovincially.
Moore says it doesn't make sense for businesses to complain about competition between provinces, because they're already competing with companies abroad through international trade agreements.
Moore is pushing for an agreement between all premiers by the end of the year that would break down internal trade barriers across Canada.
In July, the premiers of Saskatchewan, Alberta and B.C. issued a joint letter supporting freer trade.
Critics have called Canada's Agreement on Internal Trade that governs trade between provinces ineffective and say it hasn't increased business.
More than 100 members of the Canadian Special Operations Regiment (CSOR) will take part in the new mission. The regiment regularly trains and advises foreign militaries on counter-terrorism efforts.
Oklahoma City police officer Daniel Ken Holtzclaw was released from jail Friday as he faces charges for allegedly sexually assaulting 7 different African American women while he was on duty. Among the claims against him are forcible rape, burglary, and felonious stalking.
Over the past few weeks, we have seen a rise in media coverage of violence against Indigenous girls and women following the murder of 15 year old Tina Fontaine. Discussion reached its peak last week during the annual meeting of premiers, which was seen as a venue to push for action to address the root causes of this ongoing atrocity. Yet as the meeting fades out of memory and Tina becomes the latest in the seemingly endless string of murdered young women, I fear that this flurry of dialogue and public outrage has yet again failed to bring about real change.
The overall unemployment rate dropped from 7.2 percent to 6.1 percent between August 2013 and August 2014, and women's unemployment rate dropped from 6.2 percent to 5.7 percent, the NWLC noted. During that same time, however, the unemployment rate for black women remained stagnant at 10.6 percent.
The broad outlines of the argument — that the president has inherent constitutional power to monitor Americans’ communications without a warrant in a time of war — were known, but the sweep of the reasoning becomes even clearer in the memos written by then-Assistant Attorney General Jack Goldsmith, who was head of President George W. Bush’s Office of Legal Counsel.
But Detroit is really a model for how wealthier and whiter Americans escape the costs of public goods they’d otherwise share with poorer and darker Americans.
Judge Steven W. Rhodes of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Michigan is now weighing Detroit’s plan to shed $7 billion of its debts and restore some $1.5 billion of city services by requiring various groups of creditors to make sacrifices.
“What we’ve started and what we’ve become—it’s the same idea, but it’s branched out,” said Shantel Walker, who works as a shift manager at Papa John’s for $8.50 an hour. Standing with the crowd across the street from a McDonald’s, she said it was her sixth strike since joining the movement. “So [our] strength is growth.… We’re so proud of each other.”
The prime minister found himself offering up a defence Friday in the face of an onslaught of criticism from Mulroney over foreign affairs policy, Canada's relationship with the U.S. and Harper's public fight with the Supreme Court.
On the 30th anniversary of his historic majority election win this week, the 75-year-old Mulroney suggested the Tories weren't in step with Canadian traditions and history because of their strained relationship with the United Nations.
Author: By Stephanie Levitz
Author: By Stephanie Levitz
ICYMI: Here’s a fantastic documentary series produced by CBC's Doc Zone and worth viewing as we mark the sixth anniversary of the 2008 financial crisis that hit global markets in August of that year.
It's also timely to watch this four-part series considering we've just observed another Labour Day in North America.
After all, the economic crash was as much about the trampling of workers' rights as it was about the greed and lawlessness of capitalists on Wall Street and around the world.
The Mayor of Burnaby has long opposed the oil sands pipeline project through the city. And lately, city staff have made appearances wherever Kinder Morgan workers have tried to do their activities on Burnaby Mountain.
This is not the first time that Clark has attempted to “shift the balance of control back.” As a university student in 1988 Clark became the internal relations officer at SFU and immediately went to battle with the unionized staff of the student society. She won, claiming to want to “shift the balance of control back.” After becoming student body president in 1989 she was disqualified for not following campaign rules.
"I struggle with binding arbitration - period."
"It takes the responsibly of the parties away to make the hard decisions, and do the hard bargaining - we need to do that," said Fassbender from the Victoria legislature, in a media briefing that took few questions from reporters.
Hillary Clinton often plays the hawk card: She voted for the Iraq war, dissedPresident Barack Obama for not being tough enough on Syria, and comparedVladimir Putin to Adolf Hitler. This is to be expected from a politician who has angled for a certain title: the first female president of the United States. Whether her muscular views are sincerely held or not, a conventional political calculation would lead her to assume it may be difficult for many voters to elect as commander-in-chief a woman who did not project an aggressive and assertive stance on foreign policy. So her tough talk might be charitably evaluated in such a (somewhat) forgiving context. Yet what remains more puzzling and alarming is the big wet kiss she planted (rhetorically) on former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger this week, with a fawning review of his latest book, World Order.
Some 8 per cent of the world’s virgin forests were degraded between 2000 and 2013, according to the study. That’s 104 million acres, or an area about three times the size of Germany, Forest Watch said.
“That means human activities disturbed 20,000 hectares of pristine forest every day for the past 13 years,” the group said.