Monthly Archive: July 2015

Flora MacDonald 1926-2015

There aren’t many people you can call pathfinders, but Flora MacDonald was certainly among them. Born in North Sydney, Nova Scotia, she worked her way up through the ranks of the Progressive Conservative Party in an era when women were not accepted as equals to men in political back rooms. Flora achieved great heights because she was smart, hard-working, principled and a consensus-builder. Of all the people in the party over the years, she’s one among a very small number who was known to everyone by her first name alone. Hired to work as secretary in the national office of the party, Flora...

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Slugging it out

With the PanAm games more than half over, what will be the legacy beyond a few new buildings and some additional housing on the waterfront? Why not take this opportunity to change forever the traffic patterns that have been clogging Toronto by making permanent the temporary HOV lanes? Toronto must be one of the last major cities in North America without HOV lanes. Now that drivers have had to deal with them on the Don Valley Parkway, Gardiner and Queen Elizabeth Way, let’s continue HOV and press on with forced driver retraining. Otherwise, traffic woes will only get worse. For me it...

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The road to immortality

One of the best definitions of immortality I’ve ever heard was told to me by Bill Mulholland, CEO of Bank of Montreal in the 1980s. “The question is, can you mass-produce? Do you want to achieve a self-perpetuating process, one that goes on after you walk out? The ultimate accolade is when they say, ‘Mulholland, we don’t need you anymore.’ Like man’s earliest effort, you have created a tool that can be used over and over again. In fact, there’s no way of knowing how you did until after you’ve left.” Mulholland rescued the bank from oblivion, launched ATMs in Canada...

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The dining room revolution

Bad enough for the Conservative Party to run an ad showing Justin Trudeau wearing a singlet at a fund-raiser and pass him off as some sort of pervert. My grandchildren certainly took a scunner to him as a result and are forever asking me what I see in a man who would act so foolishly. These days, I must admit, I see more faults. Trudeau’s a good retail politician but he can’t tap-dance. By that I mean he comes poorly prepared for major speeches and media scrums. I put it down to bad staff work. But no one in public life deserves...

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