For the last year I've been speaking and writing at length about the issue Bill C-13 claims to tackle. While the bill's name in the press is the "Cyber-bullying Bill," the more specific problem addressed by components of Bill C-13 is known as "revenge porn," a term I hate for both its inaccuracy and sexualized sensationalism. After a year of arguing for legislation that criminalizes cyber-sexual assault, I cannot support the legislation as written. I cannot trade one set of civil rights for another. We should separate the components of Bill C-13 that deal directly with cyber-sexual assault from those that do not, and debate them as different pieces of legislation.
It was not until the media began covering the story that the number of robocalls complaints exploded. A whopping 3597 articles were written in 2012 about the "robocalls" affair, leading to Elections Canada receiving over 40,000 "complaints." But those "complaints" didn't come from electors reporting that they had received a call.
What if all Senators, save for the 20 needed to make quorum, simply resigned en masse tomorrow? In the beginning of his mandate, Harper refused to appoint non-elected Senators to the Upper Chamber. He ended up doing so because the dwindling numbers compromised the Senate's functionality. This time around, the Prime Minister may very well stop appointing Senators for good.
The federal Conservatives are finally backing off on some of the measures in their proposed so-called "Fair Elections Act" (Bill C-23). Minister for Democratic Reform Poilievre is trying to claim he has listened with an open mind, but this is yet another misleading spin statement from him about the bill. The truth is much more that playing games with democratic voting issues was hurting the Conservatives with their soft supporters, and with swing voters, and they realized they would only recover by compromising.
Climate change is an environmental crisis like nothing we've ever faced because it transcends environmentalism -- it is not a fight against pollution, but a fight against polluters. It is a struggle to change the economic and political systems that uphold business as usual. The climate movement needs more out of each us -- we can't simply click, sign or wish this problem away.
One year ago this week, a girl named Tahmina went to work. That morning, the Rana Plaza factory where Tahmina worked collapsed. She survived, but her supervisor and over 1,100 other workers were killed in one of the worst industrial disasters in history. We all want to know what we can do -- individually and collectively -- to prevent a future tragedy.
My mottled and confusing clump of skills, best set in service of those around me and my community, are crying out for me to contend. My capacity for leadership, diplomacy and frankness have the potential for good effect in my city, which I hold so dear. Then that is it, dear reader. It is settled. I will run for Mayor of Toronto.
Employers are not "hooked" on temporary foreign workers because they provide critical skills on an emergency basis (as the program was intended) but because they work hard (and presumably for cheap). So who's to blame? It's time for management to look in the mirror. For the last 50 years organizations have invested in just about anything except their employees, who are increasingly treated as replaceable widgets. The federal government is also complicit. Why should employers bother to train, motivate and engage their workers when they can simply replace them with foreign "temporary" workers?
Nomination battles are fascinating to watch and if you are part of one it is an exhilarating experience. The hype of "open nominations" will continue as all parties try to prove to the media and public that there is a new way of doing business now. Let us see how long it takes before we start hearing complaints from potential challengers about how they were dealt with during this "open" process.
Policies that restrict competition ultimately act to the detriment of Canadian firms and their workers. Free trade agreements like CETA open new markets for Canadian companies, but also force them to compete against foreign entities at home. It is that competition that spurs innovation and productivity.
Free and fair votes are the basis of any truly democratic system, something people of faith have a long history of promoting. Yet Christians in Canada have been relatively silent on some of the details. If our approach to politics is rooted in love of neighbour, we will recognize that these issues have moral implications and are worthy of periodic review and revision.
There seems to be some confusion as to the difference between open nominations and the commitment in the Liberal Party for open and fair nominations. In 2009, when we presented the "Change Commission" report to the Liberal Party of Canada, we really wanted to call it "Stop Rewarding Bad Behaviour." From coast to coast to coast we had heard stories of 'bad behaviour' in nomination and leadership races that were seriously turning people off the political process.
In the fight against Quebec separatists, its often insisted that Canadian politicians need to "speak with one voice." And that might be true. Everywhere else, however, politics would improve immensely if we could choose between two clear ones. Canada is long overdue for a fundamental re-calibration of provincial politics. Perhaps at the next Manning Centre Conference, all of Canada's supposedly "right-of-centre" politicians can get together and agree to forge a new provincial political brand (say, the "Conservative Party") that's present in all provinces. And then maybe all the left-wing people can meet at, I don't know, David Suzuki's next garden party or something.
They say that truth is one of the first casualties of war, but it should not be a casualty in the daily war of words we see in the House of Commons. The public may disagree with what you say, we may argue about the facts you tell us or how you interpret them, but remember that your words will still be there for others to see and read decades from now. We are listening, so at least tell us the truth.