After nearly two years of blood, sweat and tears – and frequently with a gone-too-soon death notice – the Reform Act received royal assent last week, officially making it the law in Canada. The baby of Wellington-Halton Hills Conservative MP Michael Chong, the Reform Act aimed to put more power in the hands of backbench members of Parliament and create more independence and less partisanship. Although high-minded ideals were contained in the Act, it was always far from a done deal, even right up to the end of the legislative session when more divisive and more controversial bills like C-51 sailed through the senate. With the Reform Act now the Reform Law, Chong joined us on Open Sources Guelph recently to do a victory lap. Continue reading
Monthly Archives: June 2015
With the arrival and equally quick dismissal of HarperPAC this week, another big election story was missed as the Conservative Party of Canada launched an online ad meant to delegitimize Liberal leader Justin Trudeau’s plan to pull Canadian troops from the fight against ISIS in Iraq and Syria. Posting an online ad to YouTube is nothing new, especially with an election campaign waiting to begin this fall, but the controversy here is that the Conservative Party used sound and video from ISIS’ own media to make the case against Trudeau. You might think that’s in bad taste, or that it even contravenes provisions in the Conservatives’ own recently passed Bill C-51, but it’s okay because according to Conservative spokesman Kory Teneycke, they’re more truthful than the news. Continue reading
Liberal leader Justin Trudeau, long chastised by media and politicians from opposing parties for not seeming to have much in the way of policy, delivered a staggering amount of policy last week. Amongst Trudeau’s announcements was his intention, if his party forms the next government, to do away with the current electoral system of First Past the Post (FPTP). What it will be replaced by will be the determination of an all-party panel, but whether it’s ranked ballots, proportional representation, or something as yet unthought-of, many Canadians agree that change is good.
But while considering change, there’s still the small matter of the Canadian senate. Trudeau’s policy brief included a proviso for creating a committee to oversee Senate nominations, thus, hopefully, avoiding any future senatorial selections that seem like party payback for raising money or doing political favours. NDP leader Thomas Mulcair meanwhile has been emphatic, the Senate has got to go, and it’s not like it does any work anyway. I’m sure some senators would beg to differ in that appraisal, and even Mulcair’s own supporters, at least those who wanted Bill C-51 defeated, saw value enough in the senate to try and petition senators to use their constitutional power to stop its passage into law.
But while we consider electoral reform, and senate reform, I propose a simple question in regards to the process: why not both? Continue reading
On this week’s episode of Open Sources Guelph, we have concerns. Can the House of Commons be reformed into something a little bit more functional? Have race relations in the United States reached a breaking point? Will a corporation be held responsible for its own short-sightedness? Will Greece survive (financially)? And is there a new threat by money to our democracy, one that will be very familiar by fans of The Colbert Report? Those are the questions, but will we have any good answers? The answer is ‘Yes.’ At least there’s a good chance…. Continue reading
This week’s Open Sources Guelph is going to be epic. It will have the best topics as discussed by the best hosts of the best community radio station in Canada. Seriously. No one is more committed to workers rights and social justice than Scotty Hertz. And Adam A. Donaldson? Clearly the best political mind in the Royal City, without a doubt. If you’re not listening to Open Sources, you’re fired! You might as well export all your national pride to China, along with our manufacturing, because this week’s episode is going to be epic. Or didn’t I already mention that. [The preceding was meant to be read in a bombastic, egocentric vaguely New Jersian accent.] Continue reading
You may have heard this interview on last Thursday’s Open Sources Guelph, but even if you’ve heard it already, you may now be interested in watching it. As you may recall, Green Party of Canada leader Elizabeth May was in Guelph a week ago Monday for the nomination meeting to choose Guelph’s candidate in the upcoming Federal Election. Former Environmental Commissioner of Ontario Gord Miller took the nomination easily running unopposed, so the mood was understandably jubilant. The reason? Greens in Guelph, and across the country, are banking on the idea that May’s 2011 victory in Saanich-Gulf Islands will be the first of many more electoral victories in 2015. After the night’s business was done, Open Sources got a few minutes to talk to May about electoral strategy and Green ambitions for Guelph this October. Continue reading
Canada may be five hockey rinks surrounded by bears, but we have feelings too. It’s always big news when Canada gets a mention on an American political satire show like The Daily Show, it’s like we made it, but usually it’s when the bus goes completely off the cliff, like with the case of a certain Toronto mayor. And that’s why it was surprising that our little senate scandal got the attention of John Oliver, and he remarked on the Canadianness of our political scandals on his show Last Week Tonight. Continue reading