All entries by this author

Don’t get too excited re Mueller testimony July 17 — US Democratic debates (& Mitzie Hunter’s Canada Day) better bets

Jun 28th, 2019 | By | Category: In Brief

Everything that has happened in American politics since the fateful day of November 6, 2016 tells we progressives of one sort or another (especially in Canada) to suppress any big expectations about the good news that “Robert Mueller To Testify In Open Hearings On July 17 Before House Committees.” The former special counsel Mr. Mueller […]



Taking time out from current madness to consider one woman’s brilliant writing more than 2500 years ago

Mar 14th, 2019 | By | Category: Entertainment

When relief is needed from Canada’s intermittent bouts of feeling that, to stay relevant in the global village, we must do a bad job of imitating political craziness elsewhere, the editors on this site turn to me. Or so it all too often seems, waiting for the eccentric winter of 2019 to end. Lately I […]



On the edge of 2019 : will Trump jump? ; Fats Waller ; Trudeau’s Senate ; CANZUK still crazy after all these years

Dec 17th, 2018 | By | Category: In Brief

On the third-last Monday of 2018, here are four short notes on the world as it looks up close in We the North of the North American Great Lakes : 1. Is Trump getting ready to jump (what would Machiavelli think?) This past Saturday morning Maggie at “Hear Me Roar” — who specializes in “The […]



Happy Canadian Thanksgiving 2018 … Kavanaugh confirmation in USA, NAFTA Mark II, & Doug Ford’s Ontario

Oct 8th, 2018 | By | Category: In Brief

MONDAY, OCTOBER 8, 2018. GANATSEKWYAGON, ON. We came back from coffee Saturday just as our local TV news station was tweeting : “BREAKING: US Senate votes to confirm Brett Kavanaugh to the US Supreme Court.” Sometimes, C. Wright Mills from Waco, Texas is alleged to have said, just describing what’s happening can be a radical […]



Does anyone in Canada today really care what happens with Brexit in the UK? (& why we should, sort of .. )

Jul 20th, 2018 | By | Category: Countries of the World

Nowadays not even anglophone Canadian political junkies follow the domestic politics of the United Kingdom with anything like the interest that was common enough 100 years ago (judging from early 20th century newspapers). And the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC)’s old role as a distributor of British TV programming to North American audiences, going back only […]



Has Donald Trump pushed us into a new age of political mendacity, like Orwell’s time between the two world wars?

Jun 20th, 2018 | By | Category: Crime Stories

[UPDATED JUNE 21 (& happy summer solstice) & JUNE 22]. Something Donald Trump tweeted this past Monday morning illustrates one of the many things wrong with his view of the real world I live in. In Mr. Trump’s own words : “The people of Germany are turning against their leadership as migration is rocking the […]



Jill Lepore’s three lectures in Toronto .. in the shadow of the new Ontario Progressive Conservative leader Doug Ford ..

Mar 21st, 2018 | By | Category: Key Current Issues

The thing to remember about the United States of America when it intermittently seems on the verge of civil war (metaphorically at least?) is that it is in the end a very complex place, full of many different real-world human beings. For every “Ugly American” there are at least a few and often enough many […]



Canadian Thanksgiving 2017, Catalonia capers in Spain, and the unbearable lightness of Mélanie Joly

Oct 11th, 2017 | By | Category: In Brief

[UPDATED OCTOBER 13, 14, 15, 16, 20, 21]. Just when I start to conclude that the younger generation running things these days has lost all interest in the literary graces that disciplined my own heyday, I come across a headline like : “Fall features fail to fully unfurl” — in the free metro news tabloid […]



August for the people 2017 : two top 10 lists Canada & global village + CelebJihad.com

Aug 23rd, 2017 | By | Category: In Brief

TORONTO. AUGUST 22, 2017. It has been a strange-weather summer in the city this year. Right now we’re waiting for yet more rain. (I spoke too soon. It has just come. And now the question is : when will it come again? Can we go for coffee later, across from the park?) Meanwhile, it is […]



Trying to escape the spectre (specter) of Donald Trump in southern ontariariario on a [Sunday] afternoon

Jun 26th, 2017 | By | Category: In Brief

One thing I’ve done today (well … yesterday really) is finish reading Jeff Madrick’s review of two recent books on poverty in the USA,  in the June 22, 2017 issue of The New York Review of Books. (The two books are :  The Financial Diaries: How American Families Cope in a World of Uncertainty, by […]