Holmes and the puzzling case of Trump’s misplaced modifiers

Sherlock Holmes and Watson attempt to crack the case of Donald Trump's tendency to make confusing and illogical speeches

Holmes and the puzzling case of Trump’s misplaced modifiers“I say, Holmes. It’s been less than a minute, and I already miss the comforts of our humble abode on Baker Street.” The great detective faintly smiled at his faithful companion, Dr. Watson. He also sensed it was a future that seemed unclear, uncertain and rather unstable. “Well, Watson,” said Sherlock Holmes, “I think we…

Identity politics Conservatives’ biggest Achilles’ heel

Kellie Leitch’s decision to enter the lion’s den of identity politics has pushed the Tories into a conversation best avoided

Identity politics Conservatives’ biggest Achilles’ heelTory leadership candidate Kellie Leitch’s proposal to screen would-be immigrants for “anti-Canadian values” has started a national conversation. For all the wrong reasons. Every right-leaning and left-leaning political party has an Achilles’ heel or two. There are proposals, plans and policies that, no matter how well intentioned, just don’t sell with the general public because…

Canada really is back – to mediocrity

Canada, which never looked stronger than under the Harper Tories, looks much weaker under the Trudeau Liberals

Canada really is back – to mediocrityDear Justin, Hope that you’re having a nice summer with Sophie and the kids. I’m sure that heeding the advice of a longtime conservative columnist, political pundit and speechwriter to former Prime Minister Stephen Harper isn’t at the top of your list. Even so, I hope you’ll give some consideration to the free advice I’m about…

The political legacy of Stephen Harper

Harper never wanted to accept being second-best in any capacity, and that went double for our nation

The political legacy of Stephen HarperWhen Stephen Harper resigned his seat in the House of Commons last Friday, it was seen as the end of an era. I readily concur. My history with the former Prime Minister goes back much further than my tenure as one of his speechwriters. We first met in December 1996. He was a first-term Reform…

Tragically Hip put their love of Canada ahead of fame

The band’s powerful ties to Canada cost them dearly in the international market

Tragically Hip put their love of Canada ahead of fameIt was a memorable final bow for Canada’s quintessential band, The Tragically Hip. CBC estimates that 11.7 million people tuned in to this group’s live farewell concert in Kingston, Ont., either on TV, radio or the Internet. That’s close to one-third of this country’s population, if you can believe it. For nearly three hours, including…

Don’t be surprised if May abandons Greens for the Liberals

The Green Party leader’s opposition to BDS, and frustration with her party’s position against Israel, leaves her with little option

Don’t be surprised if May abandons Greens for the LiberalsIs Elizabeth May going to abandon the Green Party of Canada? Ever since her party adopted the controversial message of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement during its recent policy convention – which she opposed – the longtime leader has been strongly tilting in this direction. May told the CBC on Aug. 12, “I…

Russia’s Olympic pass a blow to IOC’s credibility

The IOC made a spineless decision that could set a bad precedent

Russia’s Olympic pass a blow to IOC’s credibilityIf anyone still has a modicum of respect left for the International Olympic Committee, their blinders must surely be wide and thick. The IOC’s decision to treat Russia with kid gloves at the Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, after a major doping scandal is, to put it mildly, shameful. Last November’s 323-page World Anti-Doping…

A candidate’s (ghost-written) words are not enough

Ideology and anecdotal content can't save a politician's speech if the candidate doesn't have the oratory skills to sell it all

A candidate’s (ghost-written) words are not enoughCrafting a political speech is a fine art. Many valiantly attempt to conquer the hearts and minds of an audience, but scant few succeed. It’s not simple. The speechwriter has to take himself or herself out of the equation, and create stirring words, sentences and phrases in the voice of the intended orator. This often…

Pokémon Go . . . Away

With so many problems confronting the world, why are so many people obsessing about something as insignificant as Pokémon Go?

Pokémon Go . . . AwayOur world has recently experienced some significant tragedies. We’ve witnessed several racially motivated/anti-police shooting deaths in the U.S., a horrific attack in Nice, France, by a rampaging truck driver, and a failed political coup in Turkey that’s led to thousands of arrests. That’s why it’s been frustrating to watch many people spending enormous amounts of…

Raonic has the makings of a tennis champ

Canada is on the cusp of becoming a great tennis nation, but the path to glory needs a champion, not another also-ran

Raonic has the makings of a tennis champCanadians have recently had a great deal to cheer about in – of all sports – tennis. Eugenie Bouchard’s magical run to the 2014 Wimbledon women’s final caught our attention. Meanwhile, Milos Raonic’s surprise appearance in this year’s Wimbledon men’s final took this country by storm. There was hope that Raonic could win the title,…