Wednesday Night #2112

Written by  //  September 7, 2022  //  Wednesday Nights  //  No comments

Delighted to share the good news announced by the Dean of the Faculty of Engineering, University of Windsor
“Please join me in welcoming Dr. Peter Frise as the inaugural Associate Dean – Professional Programs in the Faculty of Engineering. Peter has accepted a five-year term starting September 01, 2022.”

Bye, Bye, Boris at least for now.  ‘This is it, folks’: Boris Johnson bids an ambiguous goodbye
As Axios points out, it will not be an easy gig for the new PM   U.K.’s Liz Truss inherits an economic nightmare; at least expectations are not high “Only 5% of Britons expect Truss to be a great prime minister, while 35% think she will be terrible.”
Welcome to Liz Truss’ Britain. Everyone’s going on strike
Soaring inflation is triggering workers to walk out en masse, just as Britain’s new prime minister takes the reins.
We hope that with the appointment as Foreign Secretary of the promisingly-named James Cleverly, relationship with the EU can be sorted

Putin’s War continues with some good news and some bad. In the first column, The chips are down: Putin scrambles for high-tech parts as his arsenal goes up in smoke and reports of an apparently successful  surprise counterattack in the north-east Kharkiv region, stretching Russian forces who are also facing attacks in the south. In the second column, Putin’s bellicose speech during which he stated he wants to revise the agreement allowing  the export of Ukrainian grain, while also threatening to cut off all deliveries of gas, oil, and coal to Europe if they imposed a price cap on Russian energy imports, adding “No matter how much someone would like to isolate Russia, it is impossible to do this,” he added, claiming that Russia would pivot toward Asia as its ties were cut with Europe.”

The U.S.
Between news about the nuclear secrets discovered in the Mar-a-Lago raid and vast disagreement over the wisdom of President Biden’s attack on ‘MAGA Republicans’ in his Philadelphia speech Continued Battle for the Soul of the Nation (Ian Bremmer believes the president’s new strategy should win Dems more seats but could also empower Trump and his allies), the U.S. media is rich with editorial and opinion pieces. We suggest this as a balanced view: Biden’s speech walks a fine line in its attack on MAGA Republicans. We also note a cautious optimism regarding the Democrats’ chances in the midterms and lo! The Economist Today newsletter has this headline: The Democrats are likely to keep their majority in the Senate with this sub Republican candidates are doing much worse than they should. It’s still early days.

Canada
The Liberals began 3-day cabinet retreat focused on cost of living, economy on Tuesday.
As they attempt to hash out the government’s fall playbook, with the rising cost of living and the state of the economy topping the agenda, there is lots to worry about, including reaction to Wednesday’s hike of the benchmark interest rate again, to 3.25% by the Bank of Canada, continuing quantitative tightening.
A positive announcement on Wednesday came from Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry Champagne that the Major telecom companies have signed a deal to keep some phone services running during future outages. He described the new binding agreement as merely the “first step” in Ottawa’s plans to improve reliability and accountability in the industry. That’s a pretty swift response to the Rogers débacle.

We can breathe a sigh of relief now that Myles Sanderson, suspect in Sask. stabbing rampage, has been arrested. The horrific events have gripped the nation. There will be much more for the next days and weeks – ranging from condemnation of the authorities who were so lax in his supervision to analysis of underlying problems including alcohol and opioid addiction. Let us hope that reforms will follow swiftly.

Why does Pierre Poilievre appeal to young Canadians? It’s all about economics – noting that the voting behaviour of young voters is highly volatile when it comes to both turnout and party preference, the author adds Since 2015, Trudeau’s Liberals have lost most of their support among young voters as younger Canadians either supported other parties, became undecided or stopped voting entirely. Currently, most voters under 34 are, as with most other Canadians, likely to express a lack of confidence in the performance of Trudeau as prime minister.

Quebec elections
André Pratte: Quebec’s political parties acting as if province suddenly awash in cash
Forget Quebec’s desperate pleas to Ottawa to help the province finance its health-care system. Forget that we have not enough money to improve the quality of education and renovate our schools. Forget that our infrastructure is crumbling. Finally, ignore the danger signals flashing on the world’s economy dashboard. Miraculously, Quebec is awash with billions of dollars!
The Quebec Community Groups Network (QCGN) is hosting a series of virtual (Zoom webinar) Meet the Leaders town halls with provincial party leaders moderated by Royal Orr. Dominique Anglade led off the series, followed by Colin Standish, Canadian Party of Quebec and, on Tuesday (6 September), Éric Duhaime. All three may be viewed on QCGN’s YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TtNJ2RO9LFs  .
It will be the turn of Bloc Montréal Leader Balarama Holness on Thursday, 15 September from 7-8 pm.

Media matters
The Lisa Laflamme story is not going away gently…
Canadian TV news is inept at the top
John Doyle, Globe & Mail TV critic
There is no misperception or mystery clinging to the story. CTV News bosses revealed themselves to be inept and strangely small-minded. If they couldn’t see the controversy coming, they shouldn’t be in charge at a news outlet. CBC News bosses have also made horrendous errors and looked incompetent, and we’ll get to them in a minute.
Al Jazeera denounces Israeli probe findings in Abu Akleh killing
The network has decried Israel’s attempt to ‘evade criminal responsibility’ for the killing of journalist Shireen Abu Akleh. Israel says ‘high possibility’ its army killed Shireen Abu Akleh
Israel says it will not launch a criminal investigation into the killing of Al Jazeera journalist who was shot in the head.
Quebecor and Pierre Karl Péladeau’s little succession problem
Succession is inevitable, but PKP is decidedly short on heirs, and a sale of Quebecor to one of Canada’s telecom giants is unlikely to get a green light from regulators.
Politico’s new German owner has a ‘contrarian’ plan for American media
Mathias Döpfner has global ambitions for what he calls a more ‘nonpartisan’ kind of journalism — even as his own politics are hard to pin down
“We want to be the leading digital publisher in democracies around the world,” he said.
… He’s concerned that the American press has become too polarized — legacy brands like the New York Times and The Washington Post drifting to the left, in his view, while conservative media falls under the sway of Trumpian “alternative facts.” So in Politico, the fast-growing Beltway political journal, he sees a grand opportunity.

Long reads
Russia’s Conspiracy-Theory Factory Is Swaying a Brand-New Audience
RT is banned in the US and Europe—but winning friends in the developing world.
(Bloomberg) Its direct viewership was always modest. But the disruptive conspiracy theories pushed by its hosts—including questioning official accounts of the Sept. 11 attacks and claiming the Ukrainian government was riddled with Nazis—energized the political fringes in Europe and North America. It appealed equally to partisans of the hard right and hard left, united by their skepticism of establishment politics.
The Right-Wing War on Free Speech Could Backfire
Progressives aren’t the only ones who need free-speech protections.
Jonathan Montpetit: Inflation emerges as main issue in Quebec campaign. Whose plan will help you more?
Five things that economists know, but sound wrong to most other people
A curious thing about our profession is that when we academic economists largely agree with each other on something important, the rest of the world often completely ignores our conclusions. Are these findings too counter-intuitive, too impractical, or something else? Here are five examples so that you can decide for yourself:
John Buchanan forwards CJPME Report: Voting Against its Own InterestsCanada’s pro-Israel voting record at the UN contradicts its own values and interests and harms its international reputation according to documents released via Access to Information legislation.

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