"We’re now in the home stretch of Canada’s federal election campaign — at seventy-eight days, the longest in modern Canadian history and the most important since 1988, when free trade with the United States was the defining issue. For the first time in Canadian history, it is a close three-way race between the ruling Conservatives, the centrist Liberals, and the social-democratic New Democratic Party (NDP)." [more inside]
"The Conservative government is not afraid to defend Canadian values." Welcome to the home stretch of the Canadian election! [more inside]
Man in Blue Suit Thanks Firefighters
For a second straight day, firefighting efforts at the Westside Road fire were the backdrop for political photo ops. Today, several federal politicians stood around waiting, occasionally wiping dirt from their clothing while sweaty, ash-covered, exhausted-looking firefighters surrounded them for the tightly controlled photo opportunity. Helicopters carrying empty buckets buzzed overhead and a steady stream of wildfire fighting aircraft circled prior to the event.via: HuffPoCanada
"I think we might have made a little bit of history tonight." Alberta, Canada's most conservative province, the home of the oil/tar sands, and most of Canada's oil and gas industry, has elected a majority NDP government. And one run by a woman, at that. [more inside]
Canada's government on Friday introduced its new anti-terror legislation, a sweeping range of measures that would allow suspects to be detained based on less evidence and let CSIS actively interfere with suspects' travel plans and finances. [more inside]
Over the past three decades, a Canadian archaeologist found compelling evidence of a Norse settlement in the Canadian Arctic. Then she was fired. [more inside]
Excellent Dissent magazine article on Rob Ford that looks beyond his disastrous single term as Toronto's mayor and examines the neoliberal strain in Canadian politics that has caused the larger problems facing Toronto, of which Ford's 2010 election is only a particularly appalling symptom.
Les érections de Stephen Harper. (SL video) (SFW). Speaking in French, Prime Minister Stephen Harper asks the hard questions about Canadian "érections". (Via MontrealMemes)
Canada's Harper government has introduced an ACTA compliance bill at the behest of the USTR, despite the treaty being dead elsewhere. [more inside]
Canadian contemporary dance icon Margie Gillis gets interviewed by right-wing network "Sun TV". Perhaps "interview" is too kind a word. (and as there is reference to it in the interview, a little background on the current PM's views on the arts)
Shit Harper Did Does exactly what it says on the can. Example: "Canadian PM Stephen Harper weakened regulations so that more pesticide residue could be left on your fruits and vegetables." "Harper decorated the government lobby in parliament with photos of just himself, instead of the traditional portraits of former Prime Ministers." And much more.
The Government of Canada has fallen after a 156-145 contempt motion passed in Parliament. The contempt motion came after a Parliamentary committee found (PDF link) that the government failed to provide adequate information on the costs of crime legislation. Stephen Harper will go to the Governor-General on Saturday to request an election.
Public servants from four different departments have confirmed to The Canadian Press that they received a directive late last year that the words "Government of Canada" in federal communications be replaced with "Harper Government." [more inside]
"I would, Mr. Speaker, indicate to you that the way in which this case has been handled, including by myself, has been unfortunate."
The power of three letters "N - O - T". Canada's "International Cooperation Minister Bev Oda on Monday admitted she was behind the mysterious “not” that was handwritten on a government document that ended funding for church-backed aid organization KAIROS and its international relief work. Reversing her earlier testimony at a Commons committee — where she had claimed not to know who penned the extra word — Oda revealed she had, in fact, directed an unnamed official to add the word “not.” “The funding decision was mine. The ‘not' was inserted at my direction,” Oda said in a surprise statement in the Commons." Opposition parties claim that Oda is shielding the PM's office.
Stephen Harper, Canada's Prime Minister, sings "With A Little Help From My Friends" at a gala last night in Ottawa with Yo Yo Ma and the National Arts Centre Orchestra. Harper survived a confidence vote this week with a little help from his former sworn enemies.
Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper has found himself in a bit of an imbroglio this week. Having attended the state funeral of former Governor General Romeo LeBlanc, the evangelical Harper has been accused of pocketing a communion wafer, an action considered "seriously offensive" by Catholics [scroll down for explanation]. But as professor of Internet and E-commerce law Michael Geist notes, the confusing thing about the controversy isn't whether the PM did or didn't eat the wafer (or even whether he should have been offered it in the first place), but rather why Societe Radio-Canada (the French name for the government-owned Canadian Broadcasting Corporation) has yanked a video of the incident from YouTube. [more inside]
Harper has called a federal election in Canada for October 14, 2008, ignoring his own fixed election date law. Polls predict another minority Conservative government. It will be the third national election in just over four years. [more inside]
A coworker hipped me to this, and I found it quite astonishing that I'd heard nothing about it.
It's a great irony that, while the United States has probably never been less popular among Canadians than in the era of George W Bush, plans to integrate Canada more deeply into the US have been proceeding at a brisk clip. The threat of Canada being absorbed into the US has traditionally provoked strong reactions here, as the pitched electoral battles over the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) and the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) in the 1980s and '90s attest. But the issue seems to have largely disappeared in recent years, leaving the impression that the push for deeper integration has stopped or that Canadians no longer care about it. Neither is true.It seems that a goodly number of politically active groups are aware, however, and are organizing protests. How effective will those protests be when they won't be able to get within several kilometers of the site? > Has anyone got any thoughts about this?> How will they fit 52 stars on the Star-Spangled Banner?> Should I don my tinfoil hat?> Is the protest even relevant, given that most of the news reports I can find are calling it a fait accompli?
Good grief. First, tips on how to write, now this. Yann Martel, award-winning author of Life of Pi (previously), believes the Canada Council for the Arts is not getting a fair shake from the Canadian government. The solution? Send Prime Minister Harper a book to read. Every couple of weeks, mailed on a Monday. In case you were wondering, the first book on the list is Tolstoy’s The Death of Ivan Ilych (SparkNotes here). The Prime Minister’s office has not yet responded. Meanwhile, President Bush already has his own reading list.
"Unfortunately the press gallery has taken the view they are going to be the opposition to the government."
Prime Minister Stephen Harper says he'll no longer give news conferences for the national media, after a dispute led a number of journalists to walk away from an event when he refused to take their questions.
Trekkergate escalates! Canadian blogger J. Kelly Nestruck puts out the call for pics of Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, closet trekkie. (I wonder if Harper has has an autographed photo of William Shatner?)
Arguing the ceremony is only for the families, newly-elected Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper has forbidden the media from attending today's arrival of the remains of four Canadian soldiers killed in action in Afghanistan. Mr. Harper has also declined to lower the flag on Parliament Hill to half-staff. Defence Minister Gordon O'Connor, retired soldier and former lobbyist for various defense contracting firms, says his government is returning to the tradition of honouring dead soldiers on November 11, Remembrance Day. Meanwhile, residents of the northern aboriginal community of Kashechawan, plagued by flooding and drinking water problems, are being evacuated, after government promises to repair a dike went unfulfilled. God Bless Canada.
(CanCon Newsfilter): The vacant seat on the Supreme Court of Canada will be filled by Marshall Rothstein of the Federal Court of Appeal. Interesting enough, as he's the fellow that ruled that Harvard was entitled to patent a mouse (which was overturned by the SCC) and was involved in banning Ernst Zundel and David Irving from Canada. However there's a twist. For the first time in Canada, Stephen Harper's new Conservative government has decided that an all-party committee will question the nominee and provide recommendations to the PM (although the final decision rests with Harper, and the committee has no veto power).
Harper wins Tory minority government. Conservative Leader Stephen Harper will become Canada's next prime minister, as Canadians have elected a Tory minority government and ended a 12-year reign of Liberal rule.
An election will soon be taking place in Canada and the party led by Stephen Harper may form a minority government. Might as well know what these Conservatives stand for.