All posts by Julius

IT IS TIME TO NATIONALIZE SCIENTIFIC PUBLISHING IN CANADA

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Scientists for Socialized Publishing

The State of Scientific Publishing in Canada

· Scientists are publically-funded yet most scientific publishers are for-profit. None are democratic.

· Scientists are exploited into providing peer-review without any financial remuneration.

· Copy-editing and formatting is outsourced to the Global South, where workers are paid less than $1 an hour.

· Scientists pay scientific publishers and often are forced to give up their copyright.

· Most scientific journals are closed-access, and scientific articles are hidden behind paywalls.

· Canadian research libraries are forced to spend $80 million CAD a year in subscription costs to scientific publishers.

· The biggest scientific publisher, Elsevier, publishes 16% of scientific literature, and boasts annual profits of over $10 billion CAD with profits margins of 36%.

· Canadian scientists spend $500 million CAD a year in publication fees.

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PRINCIPLES AND TACTICS: SOCIALISTS UTILIZING THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY BALLOT-LINE Contributions to a Debate

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Paul Le Blanc, Rob Lyons, Matthew Strauss

Preface

With the one-sentence preface “these ten points indicate where my thinking is now on certain questions,” I initiated a tempest in the little teapot of my FaceBook page, although the storm – such as it was – swept through other sites and beyond the virtual reality of the worldwide web.

What generated the debate were ten fairly succinct points on how I felt revolutionary socialists should respond to socialists running on the ballot-line of the Democratic Party (the most famous so far being Congressional representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez) and the related question of the Bernie Sanders campaign. Many had assumed I would express “revolutionary rejection” – and the fact that I expressed something different astonished many.

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The Indian Act in Canada – An Act of White Racism, Legal Status … and Paradox

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by Gary Porter

 

The Gradual Civilization Act, passed by Parliament of the Province of Canada (pre-Confederation) in 1857, sought to assimilate Indian people into Canadian white settler society by encouraging “enfranchisement.” Enfranchisement meant giving up recognition as an Indian and the special relationship of Indians to the government in order to become an ordinary Canadian citizen. The act was a failure — only one person voluntarily enfranchised.

 

The federal government then enacted the Gradual Enfranchisement Act which established the elective band council system that remains in the Indian Act to this day. This was an attack on hereditary chiefs who were much more difficult to deal with because their status was not up for periodic reaffirmation, and it is not subject to white men’s corrupting inducements and acts of intimidation.

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Independent Jewish Voices Canada condemns NDP removal of federal candidate for tweets criticizing Israel

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The federal New Democratic Party has removed noted Halifax activist Rana Zaman from the party’s candidacy in the Dartmouth-Cole Harbour riding, which she won on May 1 by a vote of party members. The ostensible reason for her removal is several tweets that Zaman made in August 2018 when Israeli forces were shooting thousands of unarmed Gazans during the “Great March of Return.”

Although Ms. Zaman’s tweets did contain comparisons to the Holocaust that Independent Jewish Voices Canada does not condone, her statement of apology, sent within less than 24 hours, acknowledged the inappropriateness of those comparisons and showed her commitment to learning from her Jewish allies.

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CSIS Violates Democratic Rights, says BCCLA

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by Gary Porter

The Canadian Security and Intelligence Service (CSIS) is a heavily funded spy agency. With a $500 million (CDN) annual budget, it operates gunslinger-style, spying on Canadians and others it considers a security risk, gathering information from the dozens of innocent people their suspects contact, such as friends, relatives, neighbours and co-workers. This information is fed into a data analysis program where CSIS purports to develop an understanding of the lifestyles and personality profiles of “targets”.

CSIS collects intelligence information and conducts open and covert investigations and operations within Canada and abroad. As a measure of their objectivity, in 2017, several CSIS members accused the organization of having a racist and homophobic workplace culture.

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