Canadians obsess, non-neurotically in my view, about the influence of the U.S. on our reality. We're less aware of the American sense of Canada's impact there. In particular, they've often shown a kind of Canuckophilia. Left-wing filmmaker Michael Moore's 1995 Canadian Bacon was a love letter. He'd have clearly welcomed annexation -- though he's since been dismayed by the Harper era. The Rob Ford fascination in the U.S. isn't just another wacko mayor story; it's because he's Canadian. It has a man-bites-dog, Canadian-isn't-nice element.To the extent that national character exists, what accounts for it? How does the experience of occupying -- or of being occupied -- shape the development of a national personality?
"When in doubt tell the truth," Mark Twain famously advised. "It will confound your enemies and astound your friends."
No danger of anything like that ever happening out here in Alberta!
Now we have the scoop in detail on the former premier's airborne and architectural shenanigans, thanks to Alberta Auditor General Merwan Saher's full report, released yesterday. (The Reader's Digest version was published a week earlier by the CBC, with the assistance of a well-placed leaker.)
Astonishingly, it turns out not one minister in Alison Redford's cabinet, and not a single member of her caucus had the faintest suspicion, the remotest thought, not a single clue in a carload, about what was going on!
Mark Jaccard yesterday said he is "horribly let down" by Prime Minister Stephan Harper's failure to "competently" enact emissions regulations in 2007 which would have kept his Kyoto Protocol promises on track to 2020. Harper himself, Jaccard says, formally withdrew from the Kyoto processes while charging the previous Liberal government with "incompetence" in neglecting to set in motion adequate policies to reach Kyoto goals.
White people are obsessed with other peoples' finances. We love comparing ourselves to others. We want the newest thing. We assume our strange ways are normal and project our anxieties onto others.
For average white people, this can end with depression, feelings of inadequacy or an overconsumption of The Real Housewives ™.
When this collective illness is centrally located in parliament, it usually expresses itself in bizarre, even racist policies. The federal government is obsessed with how The Other lives. This, combined with a past that includes genocide, guides which policies they implement.
Enter: the First Nations Financial Transparency Act.
This week GroundWire was produced on traditional Anishinaabe and Metis territory at CKUW in Winnipeg Manitoba.
Hosted by: Raegan Hedley and Mathew Joseph
1:30 The Canadian Civil Liberties Association releases new report criticising pretrial detention and the bail system in Canada. | Catherine Fisher CJLY
3:15 The United Nations High Commission for Human Rights says Canada should release a man detained for eight years over immigration violations. | Sarah Newton, WhiStle Radio
6:25 A traditional indigenous Copper Breaking ceremony on Parliament Hill| Rachel Swatek , NCRA
"I hate war," Koji Hosokawa told me as we stood next to the A-Bomb Dome in Hiroshima, Japan. The skeletal remains of the four-story building stand at the edge of the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park. The building was one of the few left standing when the United States dropped the atomic bomb on Hiroshima at 8:15 a.m. on Aug. 6, 1945. Three days later, the U.S. dropped the second bomb on Nagasaki. Hundreds of thousands of civilians were killed -- many instantly, and many more slowly from severe burns and what would come to be understood as radiation sickness.Nuclear-weapon arsenals and nuclear power plants each pose separate, horrific risks to humanity, yet the two are connected, with the byproducts of power plants usable as material for nuclear warheads.
Former premier Alison Redford signed off from public life in Alberta yesterday morning with the words, "I truly believe we made a difference."
Well, if nothing else, Redford got that part right! In less than three years Hurricane Alison, the royal plural and all, shook the place to its foundations.
After the lingering Air Redford scandal, the astonishing Sky Palace affair, the war on public employees, the attack on post-secondary education, the plummeting polls, the palace coup by her panicked caucus, not to mention the incredible, serial ineptitude of her government, it's quite possible this province will never be the same again.
Is Alison Redford a rogue politician or does she belong to a rogue party?
A rogue is a dishonest or unprincipled man (or woman), a scoundrel, villain, miscreant, reprobate, good-for-nothing, ne're-do-well, wretch, louse, crook.
A couple of weeks ago I went to Pemberton Music Festival -- a music fest that takes place in a small village north of Whistler, in B.C. It was amazing and perfect in almost every way. Pemberton is overwhelmingly beautiful, even to someone like me, who grew up in B.C., surrounded by the kind of scenery most people only see on postcards. The lineup was fantastic. Watching Kendrick Lamar perform in front of a backdrop of spectacular mountains was mind-blowing. Chance the Rapper, Frank Ocean, and Outkast gave monumental performances. I have nary a critique for the whole festival. Except one thing:
I'm tired of the tits.
A century ago, Gavrilo Princip, a Bosnian Serb youth, assassinated Archduke Franz Ferdinand, the heir to the Habsburg throne, and his wife Sophie Chatek, and the dominos fell like thunder that forever resonates.
The F Word airs a roundtable discussion about the Temporary Foreign Worker Program in Canada that No One Is Illegal hosted on June 17 in Vancouver, Coast Salish Territories. The roundtable was with migrant justice and labour organizers. It was cleverly titled TFW - WTF?
I don't support the politics of Hamas, but I stand in solidarity with the Palestinian people up to and including engaging in armed struggle. As one of the principle political actors in the Palestinian fight for liberation and self-determination Hamas can't be brushed aside by the left for convenience sake. To stand in solidarity with the people of Palestine also requires us to formulate a clear understanding of Hamas in the Palestinian political landscape.
Uncritical and conditional solidarity
On August 21-24, 2014, dozens of social movement sectors from across the country will converge on Ottawa to attend the Peoples' Social Forum. At this critical moment in our history, social justice, labour, environmental and Indigenous social movements must answer the question: "Are we ready to do what it takes to stop the Harper government's aggressive neoliberal agenda?"
In recent years, two social movements have shown what we are capable of when we really organize.
The scary thing about Alison Redford's resignation today: It just might work for the decrepit Alberta PCs!
The reaction to former Alberta premier Alison Redford’s resignation as Calgary-Elbow MLA this morning among Opposition politicians was universal and predictable.
To wit: the problems with the 43-year-old Progressive Conservative Dynasty are bigger than just Ms. Redford's political failings, however spectacular they may have been, and there's no way the people of Alberta will ever forget that!
If you've been paying attention, it's hard to argue with the first part of that proposition. But are voters paying attention?
rabble.ca is currently seeking volunteer Beat Editors to assist with developing rabble's coverage in regions across the country, and helping to build contacts and networks among progressive activists, writers, and independent media networks. We are looking for editors for the following regions: Prairie Beat, Northern Beat, Quebec Beat, and Maritime Beat.
Canada followed Great Britain into war with Germany and its allied powers 100 years ago this week. Tens of thousands of young Canadians, most of British descent, enlisted either voluntarily or due to prevailing social pressures. By 1917, however, others had to be conscripted by the wartime government. Canada had a population of five million at the time. By war's end 420,000 Canadians had served in the military overseas and 60,000 of them died. Author and historian Gwynne Dyer says that loss of life would be comparable to Canada's losing one million dead in the recent war in Afghanistan.
Amid all the horrors unfolding in the latest Israeli offensive in Gaza, Israel's goal is simple: quiet-for-quiet, a return to the norm.
For the West Bank, the norm is that Israel continues its illegal construction of settlements and infrastructure so that it can integrate into Israel whatever might be of value, meanwhile consigning Palestinians to unviable cantons and subjecting them to repression and violence.
For Gaza, the norm is a miserable existence under a cruel and destructive siege that Israel administers to permit bare survival but nothing more.