Key Current Issues

Quebec’s new man in Ottawa has a very big job .. and you do have to wonder — is he up to it?

May 30th, 2011 | By | Category: Key Current Issues

The 41st Parliament of Canada has not even held its first meeting quite yet. But already Jack Layton’s new Quebec-majority NDP official opposition is showing just how different it is from anything the federal New Democrats have ever known before. Former Ontario NDP leader Stephen Lewis, son of former federal leader David Lewis (silent partner […]

Cry me a river .. why is flooding suddenly such a problem .. and for the economy too?

May 12th, 2011 | By | Category: Key Current Issues

Several years ago I was at a conference on Canadian disaster management, where provincial representatives agreed that flooding was a recurrent problem shared by everyone — and quite arguably the first priority for any joint cross-Canada disaster mitigation policy. It never makes business sense to offer insurance against something almost bound to happen. And in […]

Canadian federal election 2011 is its own economic action plan!

Mar 25th, 2011 | By | Category: Key Current Issues

[UPDATED MARCH 30, APRIL 5, 8, 11, 13, 22, MAY 1, 3]. There now appears no escape from the spring election “skillfully brought on by Mr. Harper” (despite his seven-year-old protests otherwise). For the tedious technical details, see, eg: “Harper government set to fall Friday, setting stage for vote in early May” and “Harper government […]

LSE-TMX merger/takeover .. how many debates about the economics of the Canadian future can we have in 2011?

Feb 10th, 2011 | By | Category: Key Current Issues

In 1933 the incomparable Percy Robinson published his still too-neglected minor classic, Toronto during the French Regime, 1615–1793. In the book’s last chapter he noted how, in the 1930s, the capital city of Ontario (then still only the second-largest city in Canada, behind Montreal) was “the citadel of British sentiment in America.” Over the subsequent […]

What’s going on with the Canadian economy (does anyone really know)?

Jan 11th, 2011 | By | Category: Key Current Issues

It is probably quite politically clever that “Conservative MPs will soon be asking their constituents for advice on what to do about the economy … Prime Minister Stephen Harper has sent a letter to the Tory caucus asking each MP to proactively seek out ideas on the next phase of the government’s economic action plan.” […]

Harper’s stacked Senate defeats elected Commons bill .. it ought to be a constitutional crisis, but ..

Nov 18th, 2010 | By | Category: Key Current Issues

Not quite eight weeks ago, an article posted here raised the question: “Would the emerging new raw-patronage Conservative majority in the still unreformed and unelected Senate of Canada actually defeat even a private member’s bill duly passed by a clear majority of MPs in the elected Canadian House of Commons?” (See “More ironies of Canadian […]

The strange new Canadian citizenship guide: forcing the 19th century relic of the “constitutional monarchy” down our throats

Nov 14th, 2009 | By | Category: Key Current Issues

The prize-winning economist Paul Krugman recently wrote: “Every once in a while I feel despair over the fate of the planet.” Earlier this year he also wrote about his “Financial Policy Despair.” One of the arguably good things about Canada has been that nothing quite important enough to despair over ever quite happens here. But […]

We may have almost forgotten the principles of our parliamentary democracy, but they’re ruling us anyway

Sep 12th, 2009 | By | Category: Key Current Issues

In the midst of all the current Canadian electoral hyperbole, I was disappointed to hear that “Ignatieff rules out coalition with NDP, Bloc.” If  Canadians are now facing a federal “election that seems increasingly inevitable,” the opinion polls at the moment suggest we are likely enough to elect yet another minority government. And a recent […]

Calgary stampede busts monarchy and renovates our website!

Jul 6th, 2009 | By | Category: Key Current Issues

The big Canadian national event July 3-12, 2009 is the Calgary Stampede. This year’s marshal for the July 3 Stampede parade was Canada’s most painstaking (and expensive?) TV handyman, Mike Holmes. He at least “lives outside of Toronto, ON.” And so a further blow of sorts was struck for national unity. East is east and […]

Passport please .. does it matter that ex US presidents don`t know new border rules for June 1?

May 30th, 2009 | By | Category: Key Current Issues

TORONTO. SATURDAY, MAY 30, 2009. [UPDATED MONDAY, JUNE 1]. According to Time magazine, there was a crowd of 5,000 inside the Metro Toronto Convention Centre yesterday, listening to former US presidents George W. Bush and William Jefferson Clinton share their experiences … as commander-in-chief. Meanwhile, only a few hundred protesters gathered outside …. Most of the […]