Canada

Steve Paikin’s show on TVO is a video equivalent to CBC’s The Current, in that they both tackle matters of going political importance, tend to get into the substantive matters involved, and feature hosts that press guests to go beyond sound bites. The recent segment with author Chris Hedges on American decline – “The Collapse […]

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Climate change activists often (plausibly) assert that “the science is settled” and present themselves as the informed contrast to people whose lack of scientific understanding or manipulation by fossil fuel actors has left them with the false belief that climate change isn’t happening. At Toronto’s smallish Rise for Climate march on Saturday, I saw at […]

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One frequent talking point from people who see no problem with continuing to enlarge the bitumen sands is that action by countries like Canada is pointless as long as larger places like India and China continue to build large amounts of coal capacity. The Economist recently reported (in an issue with a cover story about […]

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There’s a lot that’s unnerving about the rise of China: their no-questions-asked support for authoritarian regimes, the worsening arms race they are in with the US and others, the surveillance state they have developed, and their massive contribution to climate change, to start with. One element that hits close to home is how their gaokao […]

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The question of control is a touchy one. No segment of the population feels powerlessness more acutely than Downtown Eastside drug addicts. Even the average citizen finds it difficult to question medical authority, for a host of cultural and psychological reasons. As an authority figure, the doctor triggers deeply ingrained feelings of childhood powerlessness in […]

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I got an email from Greyhound which confirmed recent headlines: We are permanently cancelling all Greyhound Canada services in the provinces of Alberta, Manitoba and Saskatchewan. In British Columbia, we are cancelling all services as well. This is a shame both for me personally and in general. It means the train is now the only […]

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Universal mail services are interesting to consider, both in terms of the relationship between universal social needs and the government provision of services and because of how they illustrate connections between public policy and technology. It’s important to define what I mean, because it’s distinct from the broader category of delivery services, which are provided […]

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Canada’s continued enthusiasm for new fossil fuel production not only helps undermine the world’s chances of dealing with climate change, but it also threatens Canada’s future economic prosperity as one of the dirtiest and highest-cost producers of a commodity that may see sharply declining demand. A recent special report in The Economist said: Yet the […]

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I cannot uncritically say “Happy Canada Day”. In part, that’s because of Canada’s genocidal and otherwise unjust history, but there is also my broader skepticism about nationalism itself. It seems a bit akin to following professional sports. It may not appeal to me personally, but I have no reasonable objection to people who support a […]

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Among environmental groups, Greenpeace has a reputation for being hostile to technologies like genetically modified foods and nuclear power, as well as of often saying poorly justified and hyperbolic things about them. As a civil servant, I remember learning never to trust figures or claims found only in a Greenpeace report, but to seek corroboration […]

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