Monthly Archive: August 2020

Machine politics

The sound you heard over the weekend at the Conservative Party leadership convention was not only machines mutilating ballots but also the last gasp of the Red Tory wing of the party. There was a time when Red Tories dominated under leaders Robert Stanfield, Joe Clark, and Brian Mulroney. With the defeat of Peter MacKay they’re no longer even a wing, barely a prayer. What exactly is a Red Tory? Well, someone who is pro-choice, favours intrusion by the state, and might even lean towards a guaranteed annual income. She is a caring person, not someone who thinks everyone can...

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The world within

Six months into the pandemic, where do we stand? In Canada, 9,000 are dead; in the U.S. it’s 170,000. Did anyone really think it would hit this hard and last this long? Worse, no one knows how much more is to come. A friend remarked recently that we will be dealing with Covid-19 for the rest of our lives. It was a jarring thought. I worry about students returning to school. Too many will be taught virtually. Anybody who suffered through online lectures during the spring term knows that method doesn’t work very well. Moreover, there isn’t the same socializing...

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Roots and wings

My daughter Alison and I recently spent a day visiting Guelph, my home town. We began on Wyndham Street, walking from the train station to the cenotaph and back. The main street still includes a few restored architectural gems such as the Petrie building with its unusual metal facade but all the retailers from my youth are long gone. No more Treanon, Vorvis or Peacock restaurants. No more Ryan’s or Budd’s department stores. No Marshall’s or Stewart’s drugs. Only the Big Five Banks still do business there, a sure sign of their eternal life. Two places where I worked summers...

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