1. The Students Versus the Banks
Considering that a loan of $28,000 paid back over 10 years will cost the student $42,563, federally chartered private banks are cashing a profit of $14,563. The plan to make repayment proportional to income will, certainly, let students pay less each month, but we know that the longer it takes, the more interest accumulates on the student debt.
The banks must salivate at the idea of this new niche for securitization of commercial paper backed by student loans that they cannot dispose of even if they are bankrupt, and are guaranteed by the government. For the banks, no risk, higher profits!
Jean-Pierre Lord, Social work student – UQAM
President of the local association of Sainte-Marie-Saint-Jacques PQ
2. The Students Versus Les Autres
It is no secret that the supporters of the protest movement in Quebec are principally made up of people who are white, Francophone and sovereigntist. There are, of course, exceptions to that sweeping generalization, but one needs only to attend a rally to see the copious Quebec flag waving and chants for independence to really get a taste for one of the many underpinnings of the movement.
Supriva Dwivedi, Law student, Université de Montréal
Source: Huffington Post Canada, June 2
3. The Two Solitudes and Bill 78
On May 19, on the morning after Premier Jean Charest’s government passed its controversial anti-protest Bill 78, a Montreal anglophone named Anna woke up to coverage in English-language media that struck her as being totally out of tune with the reality in the province.
“Le Devoir had this editorial in which the entire editorial staff of the newspaper expressed their formal condemnation of the law,” she said this week. “Then we looked at the English media and found a bunch of defences of a law we think is repugnant.”
The moment crystallized a difference she’d noted all the way along, in outlets that included the Montreal Gazette, the CBC and The Globe and Mail: here were the two solitudes, manifest in divergent coverage of the same event. “A lot of us had personally been witnessing the police violence against protesters, and we were reading the English media that was always reporting that students were attacking the cops, and the cops were just responding the way they had to,” said Anna. (She didn’t want to give her last name, in part because she fears the reach of Bill 78.)
Simon Houpt, What the Printemps Erable Really Means, The Globe and Mail, June 3