I do not support Bill C-14 in its present state because I do not think that the final version of the bill reflects the intent of the Supreme Court of Canada's ruling on physician-assisted death (Carter case) nor do I think that it serves the patient's best interests. I did not come to this decision easily.
The most important thing is for the NDP to not limp along and slip into irrelevance, but to boldly rebuild. Canada needs the NDP. But it needs an NDP that is both inspiring and competent, visionary and responsible, principled and practical. The many dedicated NDP activists need to know what happens now. Where is the NDP headed and how do they fit in to the big picture? What are the concrete plans to rebuild? Which brings me to the leadership question. The Leader too has to share the blame and Tom Mulcair has acknowledged this.
The Alberta NDP provincial government is getting its ass kicked with Bill 6. Nowhere in the Alberta NDP election platform does it mention occupational safety on farms. So where did this major piece of legislation come from? The Alberta NDP is using an obsolete "you elect us, we govern you" style that was already rapidly dying 20 years ago -- a style that became highly ineffective under the information openness of the Internet.
Canada should open our doors in an expedited manner to asylum seekers. For well over a year, Citizens for Public Justice (CPJ) has join many other organizations in calling for Ottawa accept at least 10,000 Syrians. We have also opposed discrimination against refugees from that region on the basis of their religion.
Mulcair's image has been cleaned up by party strategists for the 2015 election, but we've seen enough of his behaviour and attitude over the years to make some judgement. Should Canadians judge Thomas Mulcair by his campaign image or by his character? Like any employer, Canadians need to know the man they're hiring for Canada's top job. Can Canadians trust Thomas Mulcair with being prime minister?
While Egypt was considered a role model for civilization once upon a time, its inability to put a stop against barbaric acts of FGM is painful. The human rights violations where infants, toddlers, children, teenagers, and women, are having their vaginas sliced, because the notion of a woman experiencing sexual pleasure is distasteful, are not dwindling.
By doubling the maximum contribution for a Tax-Free Savings Account (TFSA), which would therefore jump to $11,000 a year according to rumours surrounding next Tuesday's budget, the federal government is doing more than just encourage saving; it's taking a step toward the de facto elimination of the capital gains tax on financial investments for the great majority of Canadians.
The reason Canadians do not look at the NDP as government material is obvious. Its public role has been to shout, scream and protest from the sidelines and that reality has and should not change. I would never question nor discount their public contributions -- Medicare and minimum wage -- however these admirable ideals were achieved with the adult supervision of the traditional governing parties.
Judge Eliano Marengo has declared her Quebec courtroom "a secular place and a secular space", and has denied Rania El-Alloul a hearing because she wears a hijab. The judge proclaimed that there are no religious symbols in her courtroom. It is impossible for a judge who daily has witnesses place their hand on a Bible and swear to tell the truth to claim there are no religious symbols in her courtroom. So did the fact that Rania El-Alloul's attire was Islamic weigh more heavily on the judge's decision than the fact that she wore a religious symbol?
In a country as wealthy as ours, it is simply wrong to allow 4.8 million Canadians to struggle to make ends meet, leaving so many unable to participate in the building up of the new Canada we all desire. Why must over 840,000 of our neighbours need to turn to a food bank to feed themselves and their families every month -- among them over 310,000 children?
Time to focus on the two leading candidates who actually have a shot at, not just winning the leadership, but the premiership of Ontario in a few years. Both Vic Fedeli and Christine Elliott come from the political rich middle where most Ontarians reside in. They have had distinguished leadership roles in business, law and politics among them.
This week the eyes of the world are turned towards Lima, Peru, and the UN climate talks known formally as the 20th gathering of the Conference of the Parties (COP 20). The road to progress in Lima is full of pot holes and is poorly illuminated. For Canadians, progress on the road to Lima passes right through Langevin Block, home to the Prime Minister's Office. To date this road has been blocked.
In the past few years, I have made a handful of requests, dutifully paying my $5 in the hopes of receiving documents that will shed some light on Canada's human rights record. What has transpired is Kafkaesque. I requested information from the Department of Justice, Foreign Affairs, and Heritage Canada on our government's process for implementing human rights treaties. Between two departments, I was told that processing of my request would cost... wait for it ...more than $4,000 in search fees.