Spending Thanksgiving with Rumpole of the Bailey

Leo McKern transforms into the barrister with personality, magnificent inflection and dry wit

Spending Thanksgiving with Rumpole of the BaileyThanksgiving in Canada is a wonderful, relaxing time. Turkey dinner with family. Football games and baseball playoffs. Listening to music. Catching up on reading. How could you ask for anything better? As it happens, I can add one cherry on top of the proverbial sundae. I was able to go through my DVD collection of…

AUKUS may create as many problems as it solves

The planet is watching as China and the U.S. prepare for all possibilities

AUKUS may create as many problems as it solvesThe hasty new geopolitical alliance of Australia, the United Kingdom and the United States (AUKUS) is clearly a change of strategy designed to enhance security in the Indian and Pacific Oceans. The alliance envisages the United States and Great Britain providing Australia with the technology to develop nuclear-powered submarines, among other things. The U.S. is…

William of Orange was no charmer but he left a lasting legacy

Inspired the founding of the Orange Order

William of Orange was no charmer but he left a lasting legacyAs the marching season in Northern Ireland rolls around again, William of Orange (1650-1702) comes to mind. The memory of William – or King Billy – inspired the founding of the Orange Order almost a century after his death. Steadfast and stubborn in its championing of Irish Protestant identity, the Order remains committed to maintaining…

Canada-U.K. trade links more important than ever

Brexit can also be an opportunity for members of the Commonwealth to strengthen their trade, social and military ties

Canada-U.K. trade links more important than everBrexit has allowed the United Kingdom to establish an independent trade policy outside the expectations of the European Union. European law and treaties signed by the EU no longer apply to the U.K. Accordingly, the British government signed the Trade Continuity Agreement with Canada. The agreement, which took effect on April 1, maintains the intent…

Is Scotland poised to push forward with separation?

Recent election results provided a comfortable majority for parties committed to a second referendum on Scottish independence

Is Scotland poised to push forward with separation?An early May column took an advance look at the May 6 elections in the United Kingdom. Now that the results are in and the dust has settled, let’s review what actually happened. And of even greater import, let’s consider where things might go from here. There were two topics of particular interest in the…

Building back better through a new Canada-U.K. trade deal

Could lead to a more effective and co-ordinated response to China’s expansionist agenda

Building back better through a new Canada-U.K. trade dealThe phrase “build back better” has drawn ire globally after Western politicians seemingly relished the damaging impact of COVID-19 lockdown policies and the opportunity offered to radically change our economies. Extremist, insensitive and ill-timed policy initiatives from world leaders have effectively destroyed any hope of the general public getting behind measures designed to genuinely improve…

Will the tide turn on Scottish independence after May 6 election?

If Brexit has put wind in Scottish nationalist sails, it has also upped the complexity. Pulling off a successful secession has gotten tougher

Will the tide turn on Scottish independence after May 6 election?May 6 will be an interesting day for anyone following politics in the United Kingdom. Along with various local council votes, there’ll be an election for all 129 seats in the Scottish Parliament and a byelection for the vacant Westminster seat in Hartlepool. The results of the last two will be keenly watched. There’s not…

Uneasy lies the head that wears a crown

Queen Elizabeth must juggle her duties with her family responsibilities. But in her case, the stakes are higher and the scrutiny is intense

Uneasy lies the head that wears a crownThe House of Windsor is making headlines around the world for all the wrong reasons. “The Firm,” as Prince Philip is fond of calling the British Royal Family, doesn’t look kindly on bad publicity. Ringing in my ears is a line from William Shakespeare’s play Henry IV: “uneasy lies the head that wears a crown.”…

In crisis, radicalism works against balance and progress

Far-left activists and politicians are recruiting and radicalizing in the same way far-right groups did back in the 2008 crash

In crisis, radicalism works against balance and progressCOVID-19 lockdown measures are opening the door to extremists, not just because people are spending more time on the internet at home, but because of the huge impact lockdowns had on the economy and employment. Much like the 2008 stock market crash, which facilitated a substantial rise in far-right extremism, lockdown measures impacted low-wage workers…

The tricky – and often absurd – business of trading with the EU

Since Canada established its agreement with the EU, the EU's nonsensical barriers have stood in the way of businesses trading internationally

The tricky – and often absurd – business of trading with the EUThe United Kingdom is inching closer to the end of its transition period between leaving the European Union and officially dropping its trading relationship with the remaining 27 member states. As of Jan. 1, the U.K. will make its way in the world on its own, trading off the back of entirely new deals already…
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