Public services and privatization

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First published by the Winnipeg Free Press January 16, 2019
In advance of the Ford government’s first Ontario budget, this report examines the fiscal implications of the government’s actions so far, and the contradictions between those actions and repeated declarations on the need for fiscal prudence. The 2019 Ontario budget will reveal where this government is taking public services and finances. While the Ford government has announced that balancing the budget and reducing the province’s debt is a top priority, it has reduced revenues rather than increase them.
The Trailer Overdose Prevention Site (TOPS, as its usually called, or Area 62) in Vancouver. Photo by Travis Lupick.
Ten years ago the political geographer David Harvey wrote, “The freedom to make and remake our cities and ourselves is…one of the most precious yet most neglected of our human rights.” With roots in 1960s civil rights struggles, Henri Levebvre's concept of a "right to the city" was revitalized by Harvey and others in the heat of the 2008 financial crisis and Occupy Wall Street.
Picture this. You find your latest bank statement in the mail or search for it online and curse audibly when seeing retail account fees have gone up a few dollars a month—again.
A version of this first appeared in the Winnipeg Free Press October 26, 2018 An October 18th provincial news release advises that former BC Premier Gordon Campbell will be heading an economic review into the Keeyask Generation Project and Bipole III Transmission and Converter Stations Project.
In Part 2 of our feature on the state of the economy 10 years after the crisis, the Monitor heads to the bank. With radical ideas for reforming finance's retail, mortgage and investing functions from John Anderson, Michal Rozworski, Kevin Young and Alper Yagci, Roxanne Dubois and Brett Scott. Here's a sample of what you'll find inside this issue:
A decade after the worst financial crash since the Great Depression, a fragile recovery is obscuring threats—some new, some as old as capitalism—to Canadian workers and the broader economy. In this first part of a two-part feature on the fallout of that crisis, the Monitor looks at the financial flows, government revenue shortfalls and austerity plans that undermine our ability to handle another sudden shock. Here's a sample of what you'll find inside this issue:
Illustration by Katie Raso Ten years from the onset of the Great Financial Crisis, and eight after the “turn to austerity,” provides a useful vantage point. From here we can clearly see how austerity quickly succeeded the panic-driven experimentation with economic stimulus of the 2008-09 period.
Illustration by Katie Raso

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