I don't wanna go fighting in the tropical heat

Imagine being a nurse in Alberta, sitting in the Telus Convention Centre, waiting to give vaccines for a deadly plague, and your chair is empty for hours because qualified boomers are just like “nah”. Today they had security guards at the doors keeping second dose LINE JUMPERS out while jab stations sat empty. I would steal some vaccines and start a pirate vaccination clinic. If any nurses reading this want to break some “rules”, smash that reply button, I have a family vehicle I can borrow. It’s a Honda.

Here’s what I’m saying because we’re in the middle of a global medical emergency and I genuinely respect the professionalism and skill of Alberta health care professionals: Thank you doctors. You’re incredible and you deserve our gratitude. We owe you an incredible debt.

Here’s what I’d be saying if the air didn’t threaten to kill us with a novel coronavirus: Alberta doctors are absolute fucking cowards. What the hell is the matter with you? I’ve seen less belly from dogs that trust me. Your shame will taint three generations of your bloodline. Imagine working this closely to nurses and through contact acquiring none of their courage. Embarrassing.

Alberta is losing doctors at a pretty impressive clip since Shandro slipped his tiny face into his current office. Most importantly my own family doctor is bailing on a practice I can only describe as extremely busy at all times and I assume lucrative. I saw her early in the dual plagues of COVID and Shandro and she was already upset at the changes headed her way. “What is your professional group doing? If you guys did some sort of labour action you could bring this province to its knees in half a day,” I said. She nodded and shrugged.

They all fucking nodded and shrugged and called moving trucks instead of each other. They expressed displeasure in press releases and bought plane tickets. Can you imagine anything so pathetic? Canadian general practitioners make somewhere around five times the median Canadian household income. Even with their student debt loads, the constant flagstone tied to the ankle of our poor, oppressed doctors wearing iced-out Rolexes, these are some of the most strike-proof people in the country. They can’t even summon the grit of their social inferiors, like hospital janitors and laundry service workers, and that should haunt them to the end of their days. If the guy washing the floor can risk getting shit-canned doing a wildcat you could probably stand outside the Rockyview emergency room doors and tell a reporter that “more is coming, fucking watch”.

These learned pillars of our community can’t see the the kind of elite worker caste they inhabit. If they as a bloc decided to stop seeing patients I think they could get Jason Kenney to kiss their bare feet within 48 hours. If their demand was that he massage their bunions, I think they’d have it, even if he was trussed with electrical tape and forced to knead those hard little buddies by MLAs with sick kids.

Do we want that? Probably not. We love to see labour gains by working class people but I’m not sure I want to open the whole armoury to the heights of the professional class, lest we become a strange medocracy with white-coated senators, chuckling as they leverage prescription pads to effect a coup. But you can’t help but despair to watch groups with great power just pack up their caravan and hit the Oregon Trail. Perhaps if they were dealt a real blow instead of a haircut they might be moved to action instead of just Kelowna.

Or maybe they’re just too busy and tired. I’d buy that, honestly. If you added clinic and research hours to my regular Playstation-based fatigue I’d probably fold too. Why push back against a strong plurality of people, your own patients, who vote in governments that see you as a problem to fix? Is Alberta beautiful enough to fight for? Is it enough fun? Will the schools be cut too? Public services as a whole? Why stay in a place slated, PROMISED, to get worse? Maybe it’s less that doctors don’t want to fight than they don’t have to and aren’t moved to bother. That’s a possibility that should scare the less geographically mobile.

😺Just because we have a cool, new form of social murder doesn’t mean we stopped doing the older, out of fashion forms of social murder.

🐉Gender is a construct but the wildfires are very tangible.

⛄️The boy king is pretty much bad at everything.

🍩Oil companies say symbolic thing they will caveat into meaninglessness by the time their grandkids go to college, maybe.

🌌Public money saved this film studio in Calgary, so now that success is in the offing it’s time to sell and make sure profits go to private pockets. Wait, what?

🔥Federal Green party laughably stupid, water remains wet.

🤟Appendectomy with Prime shipping, coming soon.

🎓We gave a failing airline a bunch of money, didn’t fully nationalize it, and you’ll never guess what they did with regards to executive pay! Seriously, you’ll never guess! I promise!

🎒Sex workers lack labour protections in Taiwan and it’s leading to outbreaks of COVID.

👻Don’t talk about black soldiers, they’ll cut your microphone.

🍖Be on the lookout for austerity knives coming out for libraries hit hard by the pandemic.

🥞It’s very easy to predict the future.

🦾Cryptocurrency is awesome for doing crimes of every sort!

🍄Surveillance is making bosses shittier and more racist.

🦸‍♂️China and the U.S. measuring their missiles will set back scientific progress.

🦷Perhaps a human resources for…humans.

👺Peruvian man enters the zone of success that watchers of history refer to as the “High Risk for Assassination” zone.

🥽Frank Magazine made people read distressing things, which Canadians hate, but it needed to be done because an asset of the RCMP drove around murdering people while the Mounties fucked around like they were in an episode of Reno 911. Not complicated.

📉What has cake and gills and is in Alberta? No, not a trout who ate a birthday treat, it’s the Alberta Federation of Labour! The AA podcast crew breaks down some doings.

🎧Sweater Weather! Good! Watch! Do it!

🔇Good socialists build halls and host punk shows there. Half Past Capitalism is on it.

🎚️Canada has always been bad, you just haven’t paid attention. This week on 49th Parahell.

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Our editor is Clinton Hallahan. Newsletter subject lines are stolen from these songs.

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