Monthly Archive: April 2017

Kevin, we hardly knew ye

In my January predictions for 2017, I said Kevin O’Leary would become leader of the Conservative Party. Got that wrong. I believed with the backers he had – a lot of formers like former Ontario Premier Mike Harris and former Senator Marjory LeBreton – that he was a shoo-in. But it turned out not only could he not campaign, he didn’t even try. Yesterday he pulled out. Call him Kevin O’Leery. O’Leary didn’t show up for debates, spent too much time out of the country, and demonstrated that he didn’t really know policy from pinochle. His big idea was to cut taxes...

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Cicero, thou shouldst be living at this hour

Ten years ago, when last I bought a television, I had the installer hook up my VHS machine just in case I might need it. It’s never been used since. The time is still blinking 12:00, 12:00, 12:00. But I did use the DVD player. At least for a while. Today I realized I couldn’t remember the last time I actually watched a DVD. In fact, when I bought my most recent iMac, it didn’t even come with the necessary slot for DVDs or CDs. The sales associate kindly told me that if in time I found I needed one, I could buy an...

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Bury my heart on bended knee

Don’t you find it passing strange that every company, government, think tank and farm boy is trying to convince U.S. President Donald Trump just how important we are to them and how no changes should be made to free trade? Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has been suitably deferential, dispatching cabinet ministers, and even inveigling former PM Brian Mulroney to come out of retirement to pour maple syrup into the ears of anyone in Washington who will listen. In addition, onetime civil servants such as Derek Burney as well as provincial premiers like Saskatchewan’s Brad Wall have either volunteered or been dragooned to the cause. The...

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The two solitudes encore une fois

I freely admit to having a brain cramp about the debate surrounding Andrew Potter, the former director of the McGill Institute for the Study of Canada. Potter wrote a feisty column in Maclean’s about the “social malaise” of Québec, calling it a “pathologically alienated and low-trust society.” The outrage was immediate and he quickly resigned his post. Was he pushed or did he jump? We do not know. Part of me says, “Well, what if his observations were accurate?” At least, in his experience. No less an individual than Québec Premier Jacques Parizeau blamed losing the 1995 referendum on “money and the ethnic vote,” another...

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