Minister Barrette wants to act quickly (Le Devoir)

By Jocelyne Richer – La Presse canadienne à Québec
Originally published on February 6, 2015
See original French text here: http://www.ledevoir.com/societe/sante/431148/projet-de-loi-10-le-ministre-barrette-veut-agir-rapidement

The anticipated adoption of the project of Bill 10 before the end of the day, thanks to a gag [literal translation, meaning to “invoke closure”, a parliamentary procedure limiting debate to force the passing of a law] decreed by the government, is only one of three steps seeking a major transformation in the health network in the coming months.

Before the parliamentary session even begins next Tuesday, MNAs had to present themselves in the chamber early Friday morning as part of the government’s decision to impose a term on the usual procedure to force the immediate adoption of Bill 10, which would abolish the health agencies and reduce the number of establishments in the network from 182 to 33.

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To Pay for One CHUM per Year (Le Journal de Montréal)

Taxes should be paid where economic activity is generated.

By Ianik Marcil
Originally published on January 28, 2015
See original French text here: http://www.journaldemontreal.com/2015/01/28/se-payer-un-chum-par-annee

Apple just announced record profits of $18 billion for the last three months of 2014. This represents $200 000 per day. Of profits. Despite all of this, the business manages to only pay 2% taxes on these earnings.

The last few years, some journalists have brought to light the fiscal strategies that allow Apple and some other very big businesses, notably the giants of the technology sector, to pay almost no taxes, despite their formidable profits. They do not falsify their declarations of revenues any more than they hide bundles of bills in safes in their basements. Rather, they have recourse to what we call “fiscal optimization” – a euphemism for tax avoidance.

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A Referendum on Austerity? (Le Journal de Montréal)

By Josée Legault
Originally published on January 6, 2015
See original French text here: http://www.journaldemontreal.com/2015/01/06/un-referendum-sur-lausterite 

This past Tuesday, my colleague André Pratte at La Presse proposed to the Couillard government that they should hold a referendum on his “plan to redress public finances”. In effect, a referendum on austerity. 

This referendum, according to Mr. Pratte, would serve to “nip in the bud mobilisation” against austerity that has been announced my unions, among others. It is also a question, he adds with a hint of irony, to give back “voice to the silent majority, the Québécois who use pots and pans [casseroles] to cook with.”

It is evident that – and I say this with full respect for my colleague – a substantial portion of québécois elites never fully recovered from the student strike of the spring of 2012. This very same social movement of dissent that the prestigious British daily newspaper The Guardian had described as the most powerful symbol of the calling into question of neoliberalism in North America.

Which is where their worries about seeing Québécois “streets” inflate with protesters once again come from. Even though in democracies – including ours – the right to peaceful protest is a fundamental right.

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