Monday, September 25, 2023
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Politics Briefing: Marketing of opioids winds down

Good morning, As prescription opioids are blamed for fuelling a crisis that has killed thousands of Canadians, five pharmaceutical companies including Purdue Pharma have heeded a call from the federal government to stop marketing those painkillers. Purdue’s introduction of OxyContin in 1996 is seen as the root of the current crisis, as the company promoted the drug as safer and less addictive than other opioids. In February, Purdue’s parent company stopped promoting prescription painkillers in the United States, where it has previously acknowledged misleading marketing and paid more than US$600-million to settle criminal and civil charges. Ontario’s newly elected premier, Doug Ford, has already set work dismantling some of the previous government’s policies. Mr. Ford’s campaign promise to cancel cap and trade is prompting the federal government to say it’s reconsidering $400-million in funding. Francisco Valencia, the activist, has been a major voice for improving the South American country’s health-care system, which has collapsed. The Globe and Mail Editorial Board on gun crime in Toronto: “The mayor’s belief that “answers are easy” if the city just throws enough police at the problem is indicative of a failed mindset that has prevailed in Toronto for too long.” Kent Roach (The Globe and Mail) on self-defence: “We need to examine whether the 2012 changes to our self-defence laws have made it too easy for people to use guns to defend property, self and others. The CBSA says detention is used as a last resort, in situations where, for example, officers need to complete an examination, or have security concerns, or have grounds to believe the individual will not appear for an immigration proceeding. It is well past time to accept that the Supreme Court is a political institution and deal with it accordingly.” Help The Globe monitor political ads on Facebook: During an election campaign, you can expect to see a lot of political ads. The Globe and Mail wants to report on how these ads are used, but we need to see the same ads Facebook users are seeing.

Politics Briefing: U.S. criticizes Canada on defence spending

Good morning, It’s the Fourth of July, so there will be plenty of fireworks today – both literal and metaphorical. Of the latter variety, U.S. President Donald Trump continues to butt heads with his allies, this time on the subject of military spending. In letters sent to many countries, including Canada, Germany and Norway, the Trump administration criticizes the fellow NATO members for not living up to their goals of spending 2 per cent of their GDP on defence. Canada, which has no plan to meet the 2-per-cent target, is focusing on the other ways it is supporting the military alliance. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will visit the mission in Latvia next week on his way to a meeting of NATO leaders in Belgium. Canada’s tariffs on U.S. goods – triggered in retaliation of other moves made by the U.S. – are affecting the American mattress industry. If you’re reading this on the web or someone forwarded this email newsletter to you, you can sign up for Politics Briefing and all Globe newsletters here. Police and politicians in the Toronto and Vancouver areas are struggling to contain gang violence, as the number of people killed in shootings grows in both regions. The city plans to step up programs aimed at steering young people away from a life in gangs. He will also deal with a Canadian federal government that may be in precampaign mode when bilateral discussions ensue.” Help The Globe monitor political ads on Facebook: During an election campaign, you can expect to see a lot of political ads.