Kathleen Wynne playing a dangerous game

Wynne should be running the province not trying to fix the federal election

Kathleen Wynne playing a dangerous gameOntario Premier Kathleen Wynne has jumped directly into the federal election campaign with her aggressive campaigning in support of Liberal leader Justin Trudeau and by taking shots not only at Prime Minister Stephen Harper but Tom Mulcair as well. Her strategy, however, is a neither winning strategy nor in Ontario’s best long-term interests. If this…

Corporations are the new sovereign power

Throughout the entire Western world the idea of a ‘sovereign’ public is being eroded

Corporations are the new sovereign powerThis electoral season in Canada has exposed a shocking truth: We don’t really know what a democracy is. The Canadian Press is no help. It has focused on, and become obsessed with, individual party leaders’ popularity as though they were covering a horse race. Behind the scenes a general malaise has settled over the political…

You want votes? Get off the script

The party that wins this election will be the one that finds a way to connect with Canadians in an authentic way

You want votes? Get off the scriptAn election campaign is a contest, not for the party faithful, but for the undecided voters who could tilt toward any of the major choices under the right circumstances. But, just as the outdated consumer loyalty to a certain automotive has gone out the window, so too has party loyalty. Votes are no longer passed…

Playing politics as an expression of personal identity

It’s easy for politicians to lose connection with the gritty practicalities of what makes a modern society function

Playing politics as an expression of personal identityIf you’re a political aficionado who was hoping for a summer respite, last week blew away any such hopes. With the first Canadian federal election debate and the inaugural Republican faceoff on the same evening, the temperature shot up by several degrees. Personally, I was disappointed by the Canadian offering. And although I hung in…

Media fails to provide perspective on Conservatives’ economic record

Canada remains the only G-7 nation besides Germany not facing a major deficit

Media fails to provide perspective on Conservatives’ economic recordSeveral years ago, a Globe and Mail Report on Business article highlighted the newspaper’s commitment to providing “perspective” in its news stories. I have long considered that a laudable and necessary component of professional journalism. Unfortunately, it’s all too rare in today’s print and electronic media. One of the most egregious examples of failure to present…

Early election battles give democracy a boost

The real winners of the first leaders debate were the viewers

Early election battles give democracy a boostAgainst all odds, this overly long summer federal election campaign is turning out to be a worthwhile exercise. The election-day outcome 10 long weeks from now is far from certain. Authentic issues are front and centre. And voters have the choice of three distinct parties which all have a prospect of forming a government. It…

Politics of fear is beneath Canadians

Harper is playing the fear card

Politics of fear is beneath CanadiansLet the games begin. Stephen Harper’s visit with Governor General David Johnston on Sunday dissolved the present Parliament, officially launching Canada’s 42nd federal election. This will be no electoral sprint; at 11 weeks, this is a marathon with time for several momentum changes – so campaign pacing will be critically important. The Conservative Party message…

Road map to a winning Aboriginal Canadian policy strategy

Implementing these recommendations may allow us to turn a corner in Aboriginal relations

Road map to a winning Aboriginal Canadian policy strategyThe recent release of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) report provides all political parties with an opportunity to renew policies regarding Aboriginal Canadian peoples as we go into a fall election. Not all 94 recommendations in the TRC report are achievable or practical, but parts of the report contain the start of a road…

Canada’s first “great political debate” was a dud

Held in 1968, just like today the parties manoeuvred for advantage in establishing the ground rules

Canada’s first “great political debate” was a dudWith the current controversy over the leaders’ debates for the upcoming federal election, it’s interesting to take a trip down memory lane and revisit our first televised confrontation. It all happened on June 9, 1968, before a vast audience – estimated at 14 million out of a population just shy of 21 million. But despite…

Young voters have no taste for old-school politics

Restoring faith in our electoral system will require a new style of politics that eschews much of the current orthodoxy

Young voters have no taste for old-school politicsOf all the victims to take a hit in the Mike Duffy Senate expenses scandal, there’s one that isn’t talked about much. Democracy itself. It’s hard to read the daily stories of ambiguous Senate expense rules, allegations of blackmail/payoffs and rampant disregard for the poor taxpayers who are underwriting this mess without asking yourself about…