Corporations and corporate power

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Farmers’ market in Toronto’s David Pecaut Square (Tom Flemming, Flickr Creative Commons)
Source: Barrie and District Raging Grannies
Ontarians heading to the polls on June 7 face a stark choice between two visions of government and two styles of governing. The choice they make could reverberate across the country. A Progressive Conservative victory under the leadership of the right-wing populist Doug Ford would almost certainly usher in another period of harsh and unnecessary austerity, and has the potential to set racial and economic justice back decades.
Canada is only months away from legalizing and regulating the production, sale and use of cannabis for medicinal and recreational purposes. Yet, as we explore in our cover story this issue, the plan is rife with contradictions: a fledgling industry populated by former police chiefs; the fact bills C-45 and C-46 will create dozens of new pot-related offences in the process of removing some of the old ones; the continued prohibition on growing more than four or five plants at home while Canada's "licensed producers" are expected to make billions.
Despite being better educated than previous generations, there are fewer decent jobs for younger workers, even after they have paid their dues working entry-level jobs or unpaid internships. They’re taking on considerable student debt only to find a fractured labour market that denies them access to full-time jobs with decent pay and benefits. And it doesn’t seem to matter which sector of the labour market they turn to.
It’s hardly surprising, given the size and market power of today’s internet giants, that questions about their impacts on public life and governance are rising fast and furious. What is surprising, however, is how consistently we refuse or neglect to acknowledge one of the central pillars of these entities’ private success: the public sector itself, in the form of public services, government support and a mass citizen consumer base.
  Photo by Memphis CVB (Flickr Creative Commons)
Illustration by Katie Raso

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