On April 2nd, political economist and giant of the Canadian left, Mel Watkins, passed away.
Digital and social media technologies are transforming democratic society. But even as technologies changes how we do things, they reproduce old problems in new forms. Hacking, trolling, micro-targeting, and the monopolization of public and semi-public space by large firms present the same sorts of challenges that democratic societies have been dealing with for decades. The difference today is that digital versions of these practices of exclusion, exploitation, and manipulation are backed by greater speed, reach, volume, and force than before. The digital realm has also lowered both the difficulty and risk of influencing public discourse in dishonest and untransparent ways, whether it be through armies of fake accounts on social media or the capacity to infiltrate state and private servers and accounts to steal information.Read more
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is breaking new ground and hitting international air waves in her recent win of the democratic nomination over a 20 year sitting Congressman in New York's 14th Congressional District (Bronx and Queens), where a majority of residents are immigrants and working class people. At the age of 28, Ocasio-Cortez, is not only the youngest candidate for congress, she also comes from a working class background, and being the first Latina to represent her district is a victory in and of itself.Read more
What is the true nature of the Liberal Party of Canada? Is it a genuinely progressive party of the centre-left, worthy of the support of those pushing for a more equal and inclusive society? Or is it essentially a party of the status quo which campaigns from the left but generally governs from the right? These questions have a rich historical dimension which remains relevant today.Read more
The Broadbent Institute's new project, Change the Game, takes a critical look at the history of social democracy in Canada, with the intention of learning from the successes and challenges of the past in order to build the best possible path forward. We invite you to join us in rethinking and renewing social democracy by reading other entries in this series.Read more
The Broadbent Institute's new project, Change the Game, takes a critical look at the history of social democracy in Canada, with the intention of learning from the successes and challenges of the past in order to build the best possible path forward. We invite you to join us in rethinking and renewing social democracy by reading other entries in this series.
Fifteen years ago today, Jack Layton became the Leader of the federal NDP at the Toronto Convention Centre. While delegates did not know it at the time, he would go on to become the most electorally successful leader of the federal CCF-NDP and bring the party closer to its dream of forming the federal government than it had ever been.Read more
The Broadbent Institute's Change the Game project takes a critical look at the history of social democracy in Canada, in order to learn both from the successes and challenges of the past and to educate Canadians on new approaches for a better future. The Broadbent Institute is committed to reinvigorating the fight to expand and improve social programs and greater social investments, so that all Canadians can live in dignity.
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1. Fight for equality and fairness.
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Last month I got to spend some quality time with my fellow social democrat, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders.
As you may know, for decades, Bernie has been leading the fight for a universal healthcare system in the U.S. - a fight that was at the core of his inspiring campaign to be the Democratic Presidential nominee.Read more
Employment Insurance or EI flies beneath the political radar much of the time, but remains an important and relevant part of the Canadian social safety net. Changes are needed to respond to new labour market realities, but the program should not, as some argue, be folded into a universal basic income.Read more