The Week’s Links, May 16-22, 2020

As national and global events become more complex and threatening, the realities and relationships that underlie these events sometimes begin to reveal themselves with a new clarity. This is the case in these times, as the links shared here demonstrate.

The Death of the Central Bank myth
For decades monetary policy has been treated as technical, not political. The pandemic has ended that illusion forever.
by Adam Tooze, Foreign Policy, May 13, 2020
Read here.

Why East beat West on Covid-19
East Asia has handled and contained the pandemic far better than the West on nearly all metrics. The factors that likely contributed to this result are complex and dynamic.
by Andrew Salmon, Asia Times, May 15-16, 2020
Read Part 1 here.
Read Part 2 here.

America’s chilling experiment in human sacrifice
John Ruskin helps shed light on what it means to have an economy that demands we die for it
by Lynn Parramore & Jeffrey L. Spearm, Institute for New Economic Thinking, May 14, 2020
Read here.

Welcome to the USA: a place where bad ideas never die
Covid-19 reveals the disastrous effects of longer-term trends in American politics and culture.
by Ian Hughes, openDemocracy/Transformation, May 17, 2020
Read here.

Almost 90,000 dead and no hint of national mourning. Are these deaths not ‘ours’?
Americans collectively honor ‘warriors’ but that doesn’t extend to coronavirus casualties.
by Micki McElya, The Washington Post, May 15, 2020
Read here.

How private equity is ruining American health care
Investors have been buying up doctor’s offices, cutting costs and, critics say, putting pressure on physicians in ways that hurt patients. The pandemic could make things even worse.
by Heather Perlberg, Bloomberg Businessweek, May 20, 2020
Read here.

Canada’s COVID-19 blind spots on race immigration and labour
Over the long term Canada should collect better health data that looks closely at the intersecting issues of race and immigration.
by Aimée-Angélique Bouka & Yolande Bouka, Policy Options, May 19, 2020 
Read here.

Why we need a culturally responsive—not a colourblind—approach to COVID-19
Noel Ransome interviews Anthony N. Morgan, one of Canada’s leading racial justice lawyers, on how to achieve social reform in the face of COVID-19.
Noel Ransome, Urbanology Magazine, May 12, 2020
Read here.

COVID-19 and African Canadians: a festering unresolved problem
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau should establish a committee under the Inquiries Act to study the systemic problems in Canada that make African Canadians more vulnerable to COVID-19.
by Donald Oliver, The Hill Times, May 18 2020
Read here.

Why are there so many infections and deaths in Montreal?
Daraja Press Podcast: Organising in the Times of Covid19, May 22, 2020
Firoze Manji in conversation with Mostafa Henaway, a community organizer at the Immigrant Workers Centre in Montreal, which organizes with precarious im/migrant workers fighting for workplace and immigrant justice. 
Watch interview here.

The rise of the Chinese World Order
For better or worse, China is capitalizing on the Covid-19 crisis to rewrite the rules
by Ravi Kant, Asia Times, May 12, 2020
Read here.

US military hellbent on trying to overpower China
While some in China are urging against an arms race, relentless US saber-rattling makes a global peace movement crucial
by Vijay Prashad, Asia Times, May 13, 2020
Read here.

Trump’s ‘Uncreative Destruction’ of the U.S.-China Relationship
Trump’s economic war on China comes in the shadow of an even-deadlier military escalation. And it may not stop after November no matter who wins the election. 
John Feffer, Foreign Policy in Focus, May 20, 2020
Read here.

A moment of truth for Israel-Palestine
The story and logic behind Israel’s ‘annexation government’
by Marwan Bishara, Al Jazeera, May 10, 2020
Read here.

How Islamophobia And Trump are dividing major Jewish organizations
Real News Network, May 20, 2020
Read transcript or watch video of interview here.

Canada missing in action on Israel’s proposed annexation of the West Bank
by Michael Lynk, The Conversation, May 19, 2020
Read here.

Trudeau government seems to be taking an approach to Israel quite different from its policy on Crimea
by Evan Dyer, CBC News, May 21, 2020
Read here.

No, Canada does not deserve UN Security Council seat
Activists pen open letter to UN member states
by Jon Queally, Common Dreams News, May 19, 2020
Read here.

Protecting Canada: a dangerous justification for foreign aid
Advertising campaign launched by aid umbrella groups represents a “nationalistic, threat-based case for aid that verges on xenophobia, reinforces outdated stereotypes, and risks undermining foreign aid.”
by Stephen Brown, McLeod Group Blog, May 21, 2020
Read here.

Covid-19, a ‘supernova in human history,’ will need multiple perspectives to understand and manage 
Beyond epidemiology: managing C19 going forward requires a broad interdisciplinary approach
by Vinay Prasad & Jeffrey S. Flier, STAT, May 14, 2020
Read here.

Reducing COVID-19 cases can’t be our only public health goal
by Vivek Goel, The Globe and Mail, May 19, 2020
Read here.

And finally, some campaigns by national human rights and civil liberties coalitions that warn against surveillance over-reach in this era of intense preoccupation with public health.

Joint statement: Digital surveillance technologies and COVID-19 in Canada
International Civil Liberties Monitoring Group, 15 April, 2020
The ICLMG has joined a group of privacy experts and civil society organizations to release a set of principles for protecting the rights and privacy of people in Canada throughout the fight against COVID-19. 
Read the principles here.

Call for human rights oversight of government responses to COVID-19
International Civil Liberties Monitoring Group, 15 April 2020
Over 300 organizations, academics and former politicians from across the country call on all levels of government in Canada to take urgent steps to strengthen human rights oversight amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Read the statement here.

Protect privacy in response to COVID-19
International Civil Liberties Monitoring Group, 20 May 2020
The extraordinary actions that our governments take to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic need to avoid increased surveillance that threatens our privacy and undermines our rights. ICLMG releases Seven Guiding Principles for all levels of government to follow when making these important decisions. See the Seven Principles here.
Send a message to the Prime Minister and the federal ministers of Health, Justice and Public Safety, as well as to your provincial minister of health and local representatives, urging them to follow these principles in any decisions they make. You can send your message from here.
Want more information? A short video about the Seven Principles and how governments can protect our privacy and our health is available here.

DECLARATION: Digital tracing is not a cure for the public health crisis
Ligue des droits et libertés, Monday, May 11, 2020
The governments of Quebec and Canada are considering the use of digital tracing tools to respond to the COVID-19 crisis. We must not use the health emergency to implement such measures without public debate. Citizens here and around the world are telling governments that digital tracing is not a solution to the public health crisis. Ligue des droits et libertés calls on all individuals and organizations concerned about the use of digital tracing tools to sign this declaration and to share it widely.
Read statement here.
For more information about the campaign and Ligue des droits et libertés, click here.

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