Sunday, December 30, 2018

Courage Over Hope

This got a little out of control, so I added in pictures! But there is suddenly tons in the news about climate change, and many excellent videos to watch.

Jeremy Deaton wrote in the Huffington Post last week:
Ultimately, the idea that regular people can’t be told the full implications of climate change is condescending. Scientists, writers and advocates might consider that they go to work every day understanding the enormity of climate change, and yet they are able to do their jobs. The men and women who work on climate change are not made of tougher stuff, and they need not obscure the awful truth about the carbon crisis. People can take it. In fact, they’ll have to. Perhaps what makes it possible for advocates to continue their work is not a surplus of hope or an absence of fear, but a sense of duty. They respond to their grief with a righteous anger, to their panic with bravery, to their desolation with solidarity.

Saturday, December 15, 2018

Ontario's Education: Call for Ideas

Today's the last chance to tell Rob Ford and the Minister of Education, Lisa Thompson, what we should do with the educational system.

As if it matters.

At least it presents the illusion of being heard. People revolt less if they have a chance to speak to the political elites. For hundreds of years, commoners were allowed to speak at assemblies without any actual voting power to affect change there, yet it kept people relatively content. Plus ça change....

Fighting for Midwives: The Personal is Political

Peter Beinart recently wrote a perceptive article in The Atlantic: "The New Authoritarians are Waging War on Women," that argues that the one thing in common with all the authoritarian-type regimes sprouting everywhere, is keeping women in place:
"The problem with both American-born story lines [that Trump was voted by the  impoverished fearing immigrants taking their jobs] is that authoritarian nationalism is rising in a diverse set of countries. Some are mired in recession; others are booming. Some are consumed by fears of immigration; others are not. But besides their hostility to liberal democracy, the right-wing autocrats taking power across the world share one big thing, which often goes unrecognized in the U.S.: They all want to subordinate women. . . . it’s vital to remember that for most of human history, leaders and their male subjects forged a social contract: 'Men agreed to be ruled by other men in return for all men ruling over women.' . . . Many revolutionaries and counterrevolutionaries have used the specter of women’s power to discredit the regime they sought to overthrow. Then, once in power themselves, they have validated their authority by reducing women’s rights. . . .