The press is aiding and abetting the PMO's strategy of image first, substance second, to the point that we can't seem to go a few days without seeing our country's leader in that all too common, casual photo op, reassuring Canadians that he is unlike his predecessor, Stephen Harper. We get it. Trudeau and Harper are different. Only, they do have one huge leadership component in common; both men have taken an element of public relations and used it as their main mechanism to influence public perception. In fact, both men have staked out their preferred piece of PR and taken it to heights previously unknown in the stale world of federal politics.
Manners are increasingly taking a back seat and it shows. What stuns me is how completely oblivious people are to their own lack of manners in a given situation, but how quick they are to point out ill-mannered others. Time to take an etiquette selfie. You might be aghast at what you see.
Does the inevitable stagnation that comes with a decade in power automatically cast a departed leader as the worst in history? Many will point at Harper's dictatorial approach to governance, his deficits, his disregard for science or his political gamesmanship as proof that he was. I don't think this type of hyperbole is worthwhile nor productive.
Kevin O'Leary premiers his new reality show this weekend -- an all-too real show, in fact. The man who made a name for himself as the loudest and most offensive cast member of the Dragon's Den reality TV show will be testing the waters at the Conservative Party convention this weekend for a possible leadership bid. He would be a terrible leader. Terrible for the Conservatives and terrible for the national debate in this country. Being offensive and insensitive to the very real needs and wishes of Canadians is not leadership and it's certainly not prime ministerial.
If Conservatives are shrewd as they convene in Vancouver this week for their party's convention, they will plead with Ambrose to run for the party's permanent leadership while requesting a not insignificant change to the party's constitution that would allow the party's interim leader to contest the permanent leadership.
We should never get over it. With the apology, we risk the ability to raise the issue of the Komagata Maru with "old stock Canadians" who likely would not want to hear the issue brought up again. With this, we potentially lose the ability to make the point that the Komagata Maru continues to be as relevant today as it was in 1914.
Don't forget, way back in January 2014 Trudeau said about Kinder Morgan, "I certainly hope that we're going to be able to get that pipeline approved." Unless we make things uncomfortable for him politically, the prime minister will force this pipeline through our communities against our will -- the public's will.
A preferential ballot system levels the playing field for all candidates. Like the per-vote subsidy, it will promote more party/candidate loyalty on the first vote. Unlike the last election, strategic voters won't need to choose between voting for the party they like and voting for the party they think can beat party/candidate X. They can do both.
I'm proud of Mrs. Grégoire Trudeau's involvement and support of causes. I just think she chose the wrong audience at the wrong time. Most parents who work full-time or more would be over the moon to have one helper. To want to have two plus an office of staff comes across as tone-deaf and elitist, even if it is warranted by the purposes you are taking on. I think I speak for the majority of the average families out there when they would say that if you can't handle the workload you're taking on, you're going to have to consider cutting back or looking at taking some money out of your pocket to find a workaround.
Mike Duffy won. Two and a half years after warning Canadians he "violated no laws" and "followed the rules," the senator from Prince Edward Island was vindicated Thursday when an Ontario court judge acquitted him of all 31 charges laid against him. What's more, Justice Charles Vaillancourt sided with Duffy. It was he, the Old Duff, not the Prime Minister's Office, the judge said, who had been the victim of a "mindboggling and shocking" series of events. Duffy's "free will" had been "overwhelmed" and he had "capitulated" as a result of the PMO's -- Prime Minister Stephen Harper's office, that is, -- "threatening efforts," the judge said.
At 27 years old at the time, I had never lived through a month of below-average global temperatures. The second was the realization that Stephen Harper had been my prime minister for all of my adult life. Taken together, these painted a striking portrait of the challenge ahead -- the pervasive climate crisis.
This weekend, the NDP is meeting in Edmonton to decide their direction moving forward. Eugene Levy once complained about filming a season of SCTV in Edmonton because "It's Edmonton." While I'm sure it's a great city, this is a party who is dreading at the Big E. The election of the past year saw an early lead blown, notable key members of the party lose their seats in the House of Commons, and a third place finish for Tom Mulcair's rookie federal election run. As the NDP head to the Gateway to the North, it's time to begin paving the highway towards the future.
As Toronto was getting ready in the first week of March to commemorate the fifth anniversary of Pakistan Minority Minister Shahbaz Bhatti's assassination, the Government of Pakistan hanged a man, Mumtaz Qadri, for the brutal murder of Punjab province's governor, Salman Taseer.
Former prime minister Stephen Harper's government issued 14 permits for work on the $9-billion Site C dam during the writ period of the last election -- a move that was offside according to people familiar with the project and the workings of the federal government.
To Canadian eyes, there is something both familiar and strange about the controversy surrounding President Obama's authority to name a replacement for Antonin Scalia. The issue is familiar because, last year, then-Prime Minister Stephen Harper appointed Russell Brown to the Supreme Court of Canada only 6 weeks before the federal election (having announced that he would do so a few days before Parliament was dissolved). Examining both cases can help us learn key differences between our two governments.
Rather than engaging in a robust post-election rebuilding process and seeking to broaden its base, the Conservative party has decided to retreat into their comfort zone of regional grievance politics. Under the leadership of Rona Ambrose, the Conservatives appear to be abandoning any attempt to repair the national coalition that swept them to power in 2006. Indeed, today they look more like the Canadian Alliance of the early 2000s than the governing Conservatives of the last 10 years. The latest and most obvious example of this is the party's recent opposition day motion on the Energy East pipeline.