Alternative Person of the Year Award for 2013: Pipelines

The Institut de recherche et d’informations socio-économiques (IRIS) has released its third Alternative Person of the Year Award. In 2011, rating agencies had been its recipients whilst last year Chinese labour camps rose to the top. This year, competition was rough. After lengthy discussions, our jury did come to a…
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Public-Sector Employees in Québec: Fat Cats? Really?

It’s often said that public-sector employees are somehow privileged. That they are fat cats. That their wages are rather exceptional. Actually, some commentators even contend that working for the Québec government is synonymous with phenomenal wages and truly out of the ordinary working conditions. Let’s be honest: getting a government…
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Over-consumption is the new black

At the end of the week, the United States will celebrate their national holiday, or rather that of the American Dream in its most mercantile, superficial —and bloody— incarnation. At the end of the week, it will be Black Friday, the day which unofficially kicks off the Holiday shopping season….
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Stock, bots, and us: High-frequency trading

In a brochure published this week, IRIS researcher Caroline Joly shows that artificial intelligence (AI) is responsible for more than two-thirds of decision-making worldwide regarding stock buys and sells. It’s called algorithmic trading. We’ll probably hear “Who cares so long as it works?” The brochure nonetheless demonstrates that such a…
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Protection for our cheeses or protection from the Taliban?

In times like ours of accelerated islamization in Québec, we cannot possibly ask the government to do everything. Of course, in an ideal world, it would worry about the consequences of the pipeline through which Enbridge will transport dirty oil across Québec and it would put an end to austerity…
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Québec’s Economic Plan: Putting Jobs First?

The Québec government recently issued its new economic policy, “Putting Jobs First”. The Premier and her Finance Minister have realized that the long-awaited acceleration of economic growth still has not arrived. Hence, they have presented a stimulation plan meant to reinvigorate Québec’s economy and to create new jobs. Too little…
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Pipeline vs. Rail: A red herring

Ever since the Lac-Mégantic tragedy, there’s a question which constantly comes up with regards to oil transportation. Are we better off transporting oil by rail or using pipelines? That’s in fact a red herring. All the projected pipelines announced by the Canadian oil industry would be insufficient to transport all…
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$6,000 revenue shortfall per annum for workers

We are told that wealth must first be created before it can be redistributed. Put like that, it sounds like a truism. We can still ask whether the wealth created is indeed redistributed in the end. That’s the question to which IRIS wanted to find an answer in its latest…
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