What's Left

What’s Left is the Citizens’ Press email newsletter.


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“Seriously, an email newsletter?” We know what you’re thinking: Grunge rock, Jean Chrétien, and email newsletters – all popular in the nineties, but not anymore. Who reads email newsletters anymore? Well, we’re betting you will read this one.

Important struggles are being fought across Canada, with unions, citizens’ groups and activist collectives on the front-lines. While social media has had a tremendous impact, tabloid-style content has become the status-quo.

In each issue we will round up the most significant developments in these struggles and highlight important things to watch for in the week ahead.

They are archived here for your convenience.


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Public debate, public governance: what's missing from the Sidewalk Labs project | What's Left Issue 110

The dog days of summer saw a new development in what some are calling a new world-historical event, and not in a good way. It is the creation of Sidewalk Labs on the Toronto waterfront through an innovative (one hears this word a lot) and perhaps unholy alliance between the Alphabet subsidiary (Alphabet is both Google’s and Sidewalk Labs’ parent company) and an odd bird of municipal governance, Waterfront Toronto.

What's Left 2018-03-22 Volume 105

Citizens’ Press sat down with five commentators to discuss the current Facebook scandal involving Cambridge Analytica. The dialogue has been edited and presented here to help inform the broader discussion of Facebook on the left.

What's Left 2018-04-22 Volume 106

Facebook, Data Mining, and Changing Childhoods, LECTURES D’HIVER, Ontario Liberals do not understand what universities are for

Apologists, failure, and always being wrong about privatization | What's Left 2018-01-21 Volume 104

The fight against privatization is framed by liberals and the right-wing as a clear and unsubstantiated ideological position of the left. And, no matter how much research is presented exposing how privatization of state services and programs costs more and has no positive (but, in many cases negative) impacts on quality of services, the dominant narrative is privatization works. But, at this point, believing that privatization leads to increased efficiency and lower costs is akin to the denial of climate change and thinking vaccines cause Autism. Decades of real life examples, economic analysis, and trial and error policy show that there are so many ways that do not work when it comes to privatization. So, why do people still believe this nonsense?

What's Left 2017-12-31 Volume 103

Reading my way through 2017 | Roxanne Dubois; State Power Apologists and Propaganda

What's Left 2017-12-11 Volume 101

For the republican Arab world, the past twelve years have been defined by foreign invasion, civil and proxy wars, revolution and counter-revolution. It has been devastating. However, it should be remembered that, within the republican Arab world, the twenty-first century began with the American backed crushing of the second Palestinian uprising (intifada).

Transfers of Wealth and Snake-Oil Promoters | What's Left

There is something not quite right with the regulation of the financial-technology world. The focus of regulation since the financial crisis was on risk (even if these have since been rolled back). However, the main problem in the end might have not been the high risk, but that the negative consequences of high risk are not borne by those taking the risk.

What's Left 2017-11-11 Volume 100

Reading the news today is like living through a poorly written dystopian novel, but without any of the exciting grittiness that comes with a real apocalypse or the fun of Zombieland. And, the current contradictions make it difficult to focus on a topic to write about. We have economic growth with rising inequality. Right-wing populism without a populist left-wing response. The decline of social democratic parties, but with a rising acceptance of democratic socialist values. Increased access to knowledge, but less real understanding. Increased politicization, but no clear path to political power. It makes one’s head spin.

What's Left 2017-07-01 Volume 97

150 years of resistance on Indigenous land

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