Equalization and You

Equalization is a federal program where they spend more money in regions that are economically depressed. Full stop.

This five minutes 30 seconds is the best description I’ve heard of how equalization payments work in Canada. It’s two Albertan political strategists .

The Strategists: Episode 564

I’ll start you at 31:40 into the episode. Listen at least to the 37:10 mark.

We pay the exact same taxes (federal rate) in Alberta as they pay in Quebec…there’s no “I’m paying more because I’m a rich Albertan — you’re paying more because you’re rich.
Every province does a form of equalization…every city does a form of equalization, because we don’t make the same money and the reason we do a taxation system to begin with is to redistribute funds to those who need them.

Bonus quote, from later in the episode:

Ralph Klein was the one who started to establish this idea that we’re sending a cheque somewhere down East. Well I’ll tell you something — before the 1970’s, we needed it too. People have to remember that in Alberta we were a have-not province. Then we got a little bit of oil an gas going our way and things started to work for us. But it didn’t really start to work for us until the late 1960’s and the 1970’s.

Link Roundup – 2016 03 02

Some things worth looking at from the past week or so:

Kids These Days

Congrats for making me hate both sides of this argument.

A millennial complained about her job; the Internet responded by complaining about millennials. This guy actually had some great things to say.

He is what’s missing from most “conversations” on the Internet.

A series of bad choices, published for all to see online, goes viral and like magic, old and young people alike start rattling off all that’s wrong about kids these days.

Listen, assholes: You made mistakes when you were young. So did I. We still make mistakes.”

Sometimes, it’s not just the kids’ fault. We don’t have to coddle her mistakes while still admitting that it’s kind of a screwed up world out there for anyone looking to forge a living as a young adult.

.:.

Starkers

Why are we so obsessed with the human form that we’ve become paradoxically indifferent to it? — Patrick Kirk-Smith, from his review of Starkers

Starkers, by Davy and Kristin McGuire. Take a look at their projects page for a ton of other incredible projector-based work, such as The Icebook.

(via Prosthetic Knowledge)

.:.

Air Fountain

So mezmerizing.

By Daniel Wurtzel.

(via Prosthetic Knowledge)

.:.

The man who made ‘the worst video game in history’

An interesting insight from a game developer turned psychotherapist:

Programmers and therapists are all systems analysts. It’s just that I’ve moved on to a much more sophisticated hardware.

The article is mainly a history of Atari, and nothing like that quotation.

Death, the Prosperity Gospel, and Me

Kate Bowler — a professor at Duke Divinity School — has been diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer.

But one of my first thoughts was also Oh, God, this is ironic. I recently wrote a book called “Blessed.”

A few years ago she wrote a history of the prosperity gospel, and this article is a sort of mini history, particularly looking at how it shaped the ways in which Christians respond to “bad things” including impending death.

The prosperity gospel has taken a religion based on the contemplation of a dying man and stripped it of its call to surrender all. Perhaps worse, it has replaced Christian faith with the most painful forms of certainty. The movement has perfected a rarefied form of America’s addiction to self-rule, which denies much of our humanity: our fragile bodies, our finitude, our need to stare down our deaths (at least once in a while) and be filled with dread and wonder. At some point, we must say to ourselves, I’m going to need to let go.

Many of her points also permeate the non-prosperity North American church. She deals with the religious, the cultural, and the personal with depth, humour, and frankness.

Cancer requires that I stumble around in the debris of dreams I thought I was entitled to and plans I didn’t realize I had made. But cancer has also ushered in new ways of being alive.

Read it.

On the inevitable cannibalization of tech by those who monetize a public good

But here’s object lesson number infinity on how handing over all the software to somebody else with a datacenter is the Law of Unintended Consequence’s best friend.  — brennen, on MetaFilter

The whole thread is quite good (not surprising on MeFi – the corner of the internet where comments are good).

exercises in missing the point

Power & Politics podcast from February 17, 2012

It was disappointing how neither the host nor the NDP MP saw (or, at least acknowledged) the political and satirical value of the Vikileaks30 account. Yes, it was personal information. Yes it was so-called “private” information. Yes, its publication was unwanted. That’s the point.

I did enjoy the general tone of the conversation, though.

Canada’s "Dutch Disease"

Will Oremus:

It’s well known that America’s dependence on foreign oil forces us to partner with some pretty unsavory regimes. Take, for instance, the country that provides by far the largest share of our petroleum imports. Its regime, in thrall to big oil interests, has grown increasingly bellicose, labeling environmental activists “radicals” and “terrorists” and is considering a crackdown on nonprofits that oppose its policies. It blames political dissent on the influence of “foreigners,” while steamrolling domestic opposition to oil projects bankrolled entirely by overseas investors. Meanwhile, its skyrocketing oil exports have sent the value of its currency soaring, enriching energy industry barons but crippling other sectors of its economy. Yes, Canada is becoming a jingoistic petro-state.

He could have dialed it back at times, but overall worth reading.