Greetings, I'm now officially a PGSS Councillor for AHCS at McGill, which should make representing this letter on Thursday all the more interesting. [McGill Daily story]

For the most part, the student unions have accepted the latest deal, which is to return funding levels of student loans and bursaries to their current levels by 2007. Let's put this in perspective: 2004-2006 are a real bummer for any low-income student. Strike action did generate the return of the funds (although there is no guarantee) but gained no long-term increase pegged to inflation. Nor did the broader issues of funding education as a public resource gain significant attention.

The energy is what mattered. It's the largest demonstration of student power since 1968. And one senses this is far from over. Medicare and transportation are now on the privatization agenda for the Provincial Liberals. It's unfortunate that the link between students and labour couldn't have been connected in time. Labour has become the slow moving dinosaur.. on the verge of extinction. If BC is any precedent, they won't know what hit them when the real union-busting hammer comes slamming down.

It's also unclear where the money is coming from. It appears that the funds aren't being supplied by the Province but in fact are Federal education transfer monies meant to supplement Provincial funding. All kinds of things we aren't hearing about, like the savage handling of student loans by the banks.

One hopes that Quebec wakes up to what Charest and Co. are trying to pull off here. This is the "Quiet Revolution of Neoliberalism." And it began with the Parti Quebecois, which now slinks around like a wolf in sheep's clothing, waiting for the next election. That the students noticed and acted signals hope but also despair: for the general public rarely listens to its own youth. Despite popular opinion, it appears that the class in power isn't, any longer, the baby-boomers (said boomers are on verge of retirement). It's the post-60's nothing-generation. The coming-of-power-age Reaganites. Dot-com may have been the last gasp of Boomer idealism and techno-utopianism. Now we face the return of the neo-Yuppie revival. As usual this hit the "youth" five years ago. That's what electrocla$h and cocaine is all about.

Well, on to other things. Awhile back Mr. Mojo Martin sent me a Free Cascadia t-shirt. Does anyone know where I can get a "Vivre Le Quebec Libre" equivalent? Ah, I miss my fellow Cascadians .. They have their own money now.


HST's ashes will be shot out of a cannon. I was hoping this was going to happen. In the late '70s documentary "Fear and Loathing on the Road to Hollywood" (available on the Fear and Loathing DVD) he and Ralph Steadman visit a funeral director to sketch out the massive "gonzo fist" that will shoot out his ashes. You can't tell if the whole thing is a put-on or HST is being deadly serious. Apparently he was being deadly serious.

August. Woody Creek. Road trip.

posted. Wed - April 13, 2005 @ 11:17 AM           |