Tuesday, March 29, 2011
Monday, March 28, 2011
It said the average employee had seen the value of their take-home pay dive by five per cent in real terms since the middle of the recession.
Friday, March 25, 2011
Monday, March 21, 2011
What happens in the Arctic in the coming years and decades is everyone's business. The Far North has a decisive impact on the climate of the entire planet. Temperatures in the region are rising at higher rates than elsewhere in the world, which affects people and the environment far away from the Arctic. The German scientists' data are urgently necessary to understand these changes.
"This is why we need access to allow our scientists to move about and work throughout the entire Arctic," says polar scientist Lochte. She is now getting prominent support for her demand. German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle, a member of the pro-business Free Democratic Party (FDP), is hosting an international conference on the Arctic in Berlin on Thursday, where the key topic will be future polar research.
However, unfettered access for scientists isn't the only interest Germany is pursuing in the Arctic. From fish to natural resources to shipping routes, the region is of great interest for Germany, according to officials at the Foreign Ministry. The diplomats are worried that the five countries bordering the Arctic -- Russia, Canada, the United States, Norway and Denmark -- plan to divide up the previously ice-covered ocean among themselves. They argue that there is a risk that the Arctic could be completely nationalized when the sea ice melts, providing access to the sea floor. Germany argue, however, that Germany and other countries should also be given a say in what happens in the region. Natural resources that will become much more accessible when the Arctic ice melts are of critical importance for a high-tech country. A similar argument holds true for the possibility of transporting German goods to Asia through the Northwest Passage and the Northern Sea Route off the Russian coast. Germany wants the five countries bordering the Arctic to recognize that other countries have an interest in using the Arctic. For this reason, a representative of China, which pursues interests similar to Germany's, was also invited to the Berlin conference.
Saturday, March 19, 2011
Thursday, March 17, 2011
Tuesday, March 15, 2011
Monday, March 14, 2011
Saturday, March 12, 2011
Friday, March 11, 2011
Thursday, March 10, 2011
(Capital, Vol. II, p418 Penguin Classics edition)
they can hand them to without it being 'other people' is beyond most people's comprehension, and what they will be expected do when the child gets to school age when they are handed over to teachers is not yet clear! John Ayers
Wednesday, March 09, 2011
Letter to The Toronto Star (12/Feb/2011)
"Behold democracy in Canada, a nation where a government rejected by two-thirds of the voters, continually lies to us and withholds information from us as it serves the interests of those who finance and control it. It spends millions of our tax dollars on self-promotion and misinformation and billions more in the service of its masters. It views democratic principles as obstacles to the goals of its hidden agenda, it undermines the sources of truth by withholding access to it, dismantling the census and promoting broadcast journalism that is nothing more than a propaganda machine designed to cloud our minds while serving the rich and powerful. And then it assures us of its commitment to transparency, accountability, and democracy."
The function of the educational system
"It (the school) was a Victorian building with pointed windows like a church. It had been built by the Fitzherbert family, as the headmaster never tired of reminding the pupils. The earl still appointed the teachers and decided the curriculum. On the walls were paintings of heroic military victories, and the greatness of Britain was a constant theme. In the scripture lesson with which every day began, strict Anglican doctrines were taught There was a
school management committee, of which dad was a member, but it had no power except to advise. Dad said the earl treated the school as his personal possession." ("The Fall of Giants" by Ken Follett, p11).
For socialism, John. Ayers
Tuesday, March 08, 2011
Monday, March 07, 2011
Sunday, March 06, 2011
But wait! A solution has just arrived. The dean of the Rotman School of Management at Toronto University has commented on the latest figures showing that Canadian workers are low on the productivity scale. If we can match the high producers such as Luxembourg and Norway, we can expect our mortgages to be paid off and have enhanced social programs such as a national day care program, and, presumably, be in a position to eliminate poverty. He was unable to explain, however, why workers in those above mentioned countries still have mortgages and social programs just like ours, or why, in the last 50 years and longer we have increased our productivity many times over and we still have every government chipping away at our services and the banks are still giving out mortgages to workers. John Ayers
Saturday, March 05, 2011
On the environmental front, it has been revealed (Toronto Star, 19&26/Feb/2011) that Ontario Hydro sprayed enough agent orange, the deadly chemical, to cut a 30 metre swath four fifths around the world. There was no regard to streams, soils or the mostly student workers who did the job. It continued until 1979 and, not surprisingly, is turning up a lot of people involved with a variety of diseases. John Ayers
Friday, March 04, 2011
In the 'futility of reform' category, The Toronto Star reported (12/2/2011) that the provincial government, which has continually stated that it will reduce poverty (25% reduction in five years) froze minimum wages at$10.25. Premier Mcguinty commented that Ontario's minimum wage is the highest in the country (except for the territory of Nunavut, to be correct) and that freezing it would help employers to recover from the economic meltdown. To add insult to injury, the provincial government also brought in new rules to make it harder for welfare recipients to access funding for food. This, of course, will affect the already meager diets of their children nice guys. Strange when minimum wage earners must sacrifice to help the economy after billions of dollars were given to the auto industry!
Thursday, March 03, 2011
"The remaining way for kleptocrats (Diamond's excellent term for societies where the surplus value is stolen!) to gain public support is to construct an ideology or religious justification for kleptocracy. Bands and tribes already had supernatural beliefs but the supernatural beliefs of bands and tribes did not serve to justify central authority, justify transfer of wealth When supernatural beliefs gained those functions and became institutionalized, they were thereby transformed into what we term a religion." On the advantages of states over tribes,
" Second, the official religions and patriotic fervour of many states making their troops willing to fight suicidally. The latter willingness is one so strongly inured into us citizens of modern states, by our schools and churches and governments that we forget what a radical break it marks with previous human history.
Every state has its slogan urging its citizens to be prepared to die if, necessary for the state: Britain's "For King and Country", Spain's "Por Dios y Espana" and so on.
" Many Eurasian states and empires had official religions that contributed to state cohesion, being invoked to legitimize the political leadership and to sanction wars against other peoples."
For socialism, John Ayers
The worker advances his labour to the capitalist; the capitalist does not advance money. Marx says, " It should be noted here that the capitalist 'advances' the capital laid out on wages, to use the mode of speech peculiar to political economy, for different periods, according to whether he pays wages, by the week, by the month, or every three months. In point of fact, the opposite happens. The worker advances the capitalist his labour for a week, a month, or every three months, according to the intervals at which he is paid. If the capitalist did actually buy labour, instead of simply paying for it later, i.e. if he paid the worker for the day, week, month, or three months in advance, then we could speak of an advance for these periods. But since he pays only after the labour has lasted for days, weeks, or months, instead of buying it and paying for the time it is to last, the whole thing is a capitalist quid pro quo, and the advance that the worker makes to the capitalist in the form of labour is transformed into an advance that the capitalist makes to the worker in money." (Capital, part II, p.295, Penguin Classics edition). Another reason capitalism owes its continued existence to the worker!For Socialism
Tuesday, March 01, 2011
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