Monthly Archives: February 2012

Fisheries & Oceans: Pseudoscience in the service of imperialis

Beware the facile use of climate change explanations


A FEBRUARY 20 REPORT in the Vancouver Sun, reprinted by other monopoly media, states that well-known British Columbia marine scientist, Villy Christensen, told the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, held this year in Vancouver February 16-20, that there is a need to do “more research on predicting the impact of climate change on oceans to better manage fisheries and stocks.” The impression left by the article is highly misleading; Christensen is actually engaged in a major research project, the Nereus Project, which is investigating the effect of three factors on ocean fish stocks: climate change, human activity, and food web dynamics (fish eating fish). Continue reading

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Harper agenda: Top 10 incidents of politicization and political interference in science in Canada

THE suppression of scientists and scientific research by the Harper dictatorship, as of March 2009, from the website Politicization of Science in Canada. Continue reading

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Muzzling of scientists: Open Letter to Prime Minister Harper

THE FOLLOWING LETTER was jointly issued by the Professional Institute of the Public Service of Canada and several associations of scientists, science writers and journalists to coincide with the panel entitled “Unmuzzling Government Scientists: How to Re-Open the Discourse” at the American Association of Advancement of Science’s 2012 meeting in Vancouver, BC.

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Muzzling of Canadian scientists opposed at international conference

CHARLIE VITA reports on the suppression of scientific research

ON FEBRUARY 17, a panel was organized by Canadian scientists entitled “Unmuzzling Government Scientists: How to Re-Open the Discourse” at the American Association for the Advancement of Science’s annual meeting, held this year in Vancouver. The panel brought together science writers and scientists who are opposed to the Harper government’s ongoing attempts to prevent government scientists from speaking to the media. Continue reading

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Halifax transit strike: interview with ATU Local 508 president Ken Wilson

The Halifax Media Co-op’s Miles Howe interviewed Ken Wilson, president of Local 508 of the Amalgamated Transit Union, at the February 12 rally in the Grand Parade. Our transcription of the interview follows: Continue reading

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Flashback: The 1998 Halifax Transit strike

THE disinformation blaming the current Halifax trasit strike on the 763 workers and their union, Local 508 of the Amalgamated Transit Union Local (ATU), presents their struggle for their just demands as a unique local event in isolation from the neo-liberal, anti-social offensive by the state across Canada against public sector workers. The transit strike is also presented in an ahistorical prism, as if it is something entirely new. For the information of our readers, we are reproducing an article written at the conclusion of the summer 1998 strike from Nova Scotia’s Shunpiking Magazine. Continue reading

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USAID contractor work in Cuba detailed by Associated Press

[AP, February 13, 2012) – PIECE BY PIECE, in backpacks and carry-on bags, American aid contractor Alan Gross made sure laptops, smartphones, hard drives and networking equipment were secreted into Cuba.

The most sensitive item, according to official trip reports, was the last one: a specialized mobile phone chip that experts say is often used by the Pentagon and the CIA to make satellite signals virtually impossible to track. Continue reading

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Support the Halifax Transit workers!

Community Solidarity Rally for Transit and Water Workers

Sunday, February 12 — 1:00 pm

Grand Parade Square, in front of City Hall

The Halifax-Dartmouth & District Labour Council has called for a Community Rally in support of the striking Halifax Transit workers, on Sunday, February 12 at 1:00 pm at Grand Parade in front of City Hall. After the rally, everyone is invited to the Amalgamated Transit Union office in Dartmouth for a solidarity BBQ.

In their call for the rally the Labour Council writes: “The transit strike is still ongoing, and it appears Halifax Regional Municipality’s Water Workers may be heading toward a strike as well in the very near future. We want to show support for our transit workers and water workers and tell Halifax Regional Municipality to protect public services and sign a fair deal.”

All Out to Support the Halifax Transit Workers!

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Lockout of Newfoundland trawlermen – mass police arrest of workers

FFAW members picket near the OCI headquarters in Paradise Thursday. In foreground is Greg Pretty, FFAW spokesman for the workers. — Photo by Gary Hebbard:The Telegram

The role played by the RCMP in Bay Roberts on the north east coast of Newfoundland on February 8, to protect the scabs recruited by Ocean Choice International (OCI) after it locked out its trawlermen on February 6, should be denounced by all. The RCMP were brought in to ensure that company scabs could board OCI’s groundfish trawler the Newfoundland Lynx. Though it is not at all unexpected to see police mobilized to defend private corporate interests against the workers and assaulting workers for defending their rights, it is outrageous nonetheless. The Newfoundland Lynx has since set sail. Continue reading

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Race and Revolution: Lessons from Cuba

A James Robinson Johnston Chair in Black Canadian Studies Distinguished Lecture by Isaac Saney, scholar on Cuba and author of the acclaimed book, Cuba: A Revolution In Motion.

7:00 pm, Wednesday, February 15

Room 303, Dalhousie Student Union Building

6136 University Avenue

Prof Saney will address why Cuba has exercised such a profound hold and influence on the worldwide Black struggle for equality, freedom and self-determination. Examining the more than 53-year history of the Cuba Revolution (encompassing its successes and setbacks), Saney will discuss the meaning and relevance of Cuba for present-day struggles and imaginings of a world centred on social justice, human dignity and genuine emancipation.

A reception starting at 6pm will be held prior to the public lecture.

The James Robinson Johnston lecture series aims to create dialogue between the African Canadian community and Dalhousie University on issues that impact the African Diaspora locally, nationally and internationally. Following the mandate of the Chair to increase the profile of Black Canadian Studies, the lecture series creates bridges between the university and wider African Canadian communities.

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After a seven-month absence due to the necessity to deal with various issues, I am resuming this weblog with both current as well as postdated materials. Readers may also be interested in WordPress’s ranking of the articles of greatest interest (below). There are presently 362 articles posted, of which 101 are from 2011, along with 345 images. There have been 6,448 views since the launching of the site in April 2011. Most visitors came from Canada. The United States and the United Kingdom were not far behind.

The busiest day of the year was June 23rd with 99 views. The most popular post that day was Lock out at post office: All out to defend the rights of postal workers!. The most commented on post in 2011 was Tony Seed again stands as anti-war candidate in Halifax.

Most viewed posts for all days ending 2012-02-02 (Summarized)

1 Lock out at post office: All out to defend the rights of postal workers! June 2011

2 The politics of assassination – Flanagan & Harper style April 2011

3 Shipbuilding yes, but not the militarization of shipbuilding May 2011

4 War criminals are not welcome in Halifax November 2011

5 Tony Seed again stands as anti-war candidate in Halifax April 2011

6 Stop the warmongers! Reject the Halifax Chronicle Herald’s call for the invasion of Africa!

7 Reality check: The Windsor family wealth

8 U.S. bridgehead: Are the Canary Islands becoming the Miami of Africa?

9 The Michelin File: Drive to empire

10 Pensions: N.S. Government Retired Employees Association

11 Harper, military monopolies sell arms & Innu land in Paris; Newfoundlanders organize Mayday rally against cratering search and rescue sub-centre

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Issues in the Halifax transit workers strike

Metro Transit workers employed by the Halifax Regional Municipality walked off the job in the early hours of February 2 resisting demands for concessions in their collective agreement. The 763 unionized employees are represented by Amalgamated Transit Union Local (ATU) 508 and they provide and maintain bus and ferry service to some 50,000 commuters daily. They have been without a collective agreement since September 2011. Continue reading

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