340 meters per second

Trust only movement. Life happens at the level of events, not of words. Trust movement.

&mdash Alfred Adler (1870-1937)

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Labouring under illusions.

Just cause someone lowers the bar, you don't have to limbo along with them.
- Synner

A few days ago, Vidanges du Diable wrote about the Québec government's plan to offer tax rebates on the purchase of 'environmentally-friendly' vehicles and the stunning mendacity of automakers who mis-represent their products in order to qualify for these rebates. Lesson for the day: anything can (and will) be subverted, so stay sharp.

* * *

NK has a beautiful pair of posts up where she writes about her own personal "History of Smoking," using one particular aspect of her self--in this case, an iteration of addiction--as a lens through which she refracts her life and, choices she's made. Check out parts I and II, then ask her for more.

* * *

The Globe & Mail reports on the latest developments in the BC teachers' strike: a much larger one-day labour strike shut down the provincial capital...

The dispute is beginning to spread beyond the teachers' picket lines into a confrontation with the province's entire labour movement.

B.C. Federation of Labour president Jim Sinclair called yesterday's organized-labour protest in Victoria, which shut bus service, mail delivery and many other government services, just the taste of things to come if the conflict is not resolved.

... while at the same time,

[A] special prosecutor was appointed to determine whether criminal contempt charges should be laid against the B.C. Teachers' Federation and its members.

In court yesterday, special prosecutor Len Doust said it is already apparent that some of the teachers' conduct "comes perilously close" to criminal contempt of court.

Whatever ends up happening, this entire debacle has clearly had an impact on the British Columbian (and, to a lesser extent, Canadian) labour movement.

Ms. Sims was right when she stated that the provincial labour movement "will not be broken": the show of solidarity in Victoria served as a powerful reminder to the government and civil society at large that when push comes to shove, organized labour can and will get each others' backs. Meanwhile, the BC Supreme Court's ruling--which effectively froze the union's assets--demonstrated that while the traditional issues of wages, conditions and hours remain largely the same, the methods of fighting these battles have evolved. Should be some interesting times ahead...


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