When Justin Trudeau said last week that he had a "level of admiration" for China's "basic dictatorship," the understandable knee-jerk reaction from some politicians and pundits was to kick the federal Liberal leader. But while that gaffe was reprehensible, it was hardly incomprehensible and perhaps entirely understandable given the structure of our own political system, the parties within it and how some Canadians feel about dictatorships.
I'm no John Ivison, Christie Blatchford, Chantal Hebert, Ezra Levant, Christopher Hume, Andrew Coyne or Margaret Wente. Heck, you could find bloggers...
All countries with adequate resources have intelligence agencies like CSEC and CSIS. Countries have oversight mechanisms to assure these agencies' political masters -- including legislators from both government and opposition parties -- that the agencies are not breaking the laws of their country or otherwise operating outside their mandate. Canada has no such oversight mechanisms. Or, rather, Canada's mechanisms are so feeble and after-the-fact that nobody can assure ordinary Canadian citizens that their own intelligence agencies are being held to account.
Tim Knight writes the regular media column, Watching the Watchdog, for HuffPost Canada. Program: Premiere of The Zoomer, Vision TV Subject: Radic...
What do you do when your opponent has the potential to challenge you in some hard-won ridings, possibly putting your majority at risk? That's the question Prime Minister Harper and his advisers are grappling with. Like it or not, the emergence of Justin Trudeau and his staying power has changed the political dynamics in Ottawa.
Yawn: I see the NDP held a virtual Question Period on Twitter in an attempt to hold the Harper government to account. That effort was even less interesting than watching them try to do that live in the House of Commons.
If the goal was to make us forget he existed, it quite clearly didn't work. I'm referring to Thomas Mulcair's weird habit of never calling Justin Trudeau by his full name. Judging from the polls, there doesn't seem to be any evidence that this gimmick is paying dividends for the NDP.
The outlines of the Justin Trudeau Liberal election strategy are now appearing. Purposeful or not (and I think it is), he is getting Canadians to first look, then think, and finally accept him and, by extension, his party as the natural voting alternative to Mr. Harper. Voters do not all wait till election day to make up their minds.
It's an interesting dilemma for the opposition. They largely wasted the summer months and only once in a while popped up to remind the public about Conservative scandals. Come September they will have to make up for lost time and lost opportunities, but they won't have Question Period to do that in.
A cabinet shuffle can be a means to revive a political brand. In the case of the Harper Conservative government, the recent cabinet shuffle was an at...
Since the start of his campaign for the leadership of the Official Opposition New Democratic Party of Canada, there has seemed to be a subtext of waiting whenever Thomas Mulcair is the topic of conversation. You would often hear panelists talk about his temper or hosts of political shows bring up the "angry Mulcair" meme. What has been striking is his composed and controlled demeanour in the face of anger-inducing situations. But if he wants to win the country, Mulcair must find a way to translate that legendary anger into passion.
Hopefully the summer break will allow all the parties to reflect on the good and the bad of this past session. When they return let's hope they can tone down the hyper-partisanship a bit and work in the best interests of all Canadians. After all that is why we sent them there.
Justin Trudeau is our ink blot, a psychological device that lets us project our beliefs onto him, letting us think he stands for us. While he speaks in broad platitudes, his name is also a powerful symbol of Canada, so he is able to bring along voters regardless of substance.
Fiscal responsibility has been the hallmark of the Harper government from day one. It's therefore quite interesting to see in year seven of his reign that the opposition is focused on trying to destroy the credibility the Tories have on that front. It's a good strategy on their part, enabled by some help from the government side.
Sometimes it feels like the NDP MPs are still nursing their hangover from the election-night party two years ago. They need to sober up, and soon. Canadians are still waiting for the full weight of the Official Opposition to be pressed against the Conservatives.
What was supposed to be an exercise in showing how good the NDP could be at managing the public purse and proposing sensible, balanced policies turned into the usual radical, job-killing, tax-raising, disorganized chaos for which the left wing has always been known.