Graham H. Cox

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Graduate student issues and the academy | Graham Cox

A version of this article was presented to the Canadian Federation of Students-Ontario 2018 general meeting. The domination of the neoliberal view for the previous nearly four decades has meant that all public spending has to be couched as supporting the private economy. Even for something as basic as higher education cannot be described as having an inherent value, it must be commodified and linked to some private sector profit. In the case of university, public funding is only available because it is part of the private sectors desire to have skilled workers. As such, a post-secondary education degree is only talked about as a pathway to a job, and not as a valuable process by itself.

Alberta Conservatives Start Governing by Attacking Worker Rights and Future Generations

The newly elected United Conservative Party under Jason Kenney announced in the speech from the throne that their main priority is to drive wages down for workers, remove protections for workers at work, defund their political opposition, and undermine future generations in Alberta and around the world. Bill 1 is to attack the environment – kicking them while they are down. Bill 2 is going to attack workers, their unions, wages, youth, and health & safety for employees.

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Ontario Budget 2019 undermines the academic system | Graham Cox

The Ford Government’s cuts to the university sector puts additional strain on an already stressed funding system. The new budget drives an aggressive free-market agenda obsessed with short-term results that does not work in a university setting and will undermine teaching, learning, and research in Ontario. The announced direction for Strategic Mandate Agreement’s (SMAs) will drive universities to align their teaching and research priorities with short-term labour market demands. This will undermine of the long-term research and teaching objectives at the heart of quality academic education and research. In short, the budget is a disaster for the academy and will bring hardship to the workers, students, and faculty on our campuses.

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The Green New Campaigns in Canada | Graham Cox

In the US, the Green New Deal has gained deserved momentum because it is being promoted by charismatic elected officials, propelled to power on the basis of their broad left-wing credentials – and not only because of their focus on climate. We cannot bypass this step in Canada. This means that unapologetic socialist elements in our labour party must also be propelled into a position to promote such an agenda.

Ford's cynical politics and higher education | Graham Cox

The announcement on post-secondary education by the Ford government was a showcase of the new cynical politics of the right-wing. It was painful to watch. The minister, looking as excited as a drowned cat, delivered an announcement of massive and destructive change to higher education in this province using an ugly caricature of Orwellian language.

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Student power through their unions | Graham Cox

Any challenge to the stability of student unions — one of the last independent democratic structures left in society — is an attack on democracy.

Conservatives in Ontario start their attack on workers' rights today

Doug Ford and his conservatives attack the rights of workers in Ontario with the repeal of Bill 148 provisions. This brings us back to the regressive position workers were in before Bill 148. For workers seeking union protection, the law removes all of the provisions that brought some balance back to workers. The new legislation will tilt labour law drastically in favour of employers and capitalists.

The Canadian Union of Postal Workers (CUPW) will begin rotating strikes

The Canadian Union of Postal Workers (CUPW) will begin rotating strikes at 12:01 am tomorrow in Victoria (British Columbia), Edmonton (Alberta), Windsor (Ontario), and 1:01 am in Halifax (Nova Scotia). All times listed in local time. The strikes will last for 24 hours with locations striking daily.

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Section 2 of the Canadian Charter. Or, what Ford has trampled.

Section 2 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms – The Charter – lists your fundamental freedoms under the Constitution of Canada. The fundamental freedoms are freedom of expression, freedom of religion, freedom of thought, freedom of belief, freedom of peaceful assembly and freedom of association.

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