This week on Open Sources Guelph, it might get ugly. We’re coming off a very bad week south of the border, and it only seems to promise to get worse if you-know-who has his say. Worse still, that style of politics seems to be spreading, so we’ll make a pit stop in Brazil before heading home where fighting action on climate change has become a way to bring the country together it seems. We’ll also play catch-up with what will hopefully be a more positive development in democracy.
This Thursday, November 1 at 5 pm, Scotty Hertz and Adam A. Donaldson will discuss:
Tree of Strife. A shooting at the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh was the final leg in a hattrick of hate in the last week in the United States. Letter bombs sent to prominent critics of U.S. President Donald Trump, and a shooting of two black men at a grocery store by a gunman that first tried to break in to a black church were the other two, and America must once again confront a legacy of hate that does, unfortunately, trace back to Trump himself? Is America finally posed to break the cycle of hate, and will this have any effect on the outcome of Tuesday’s midterm elections?
“Trump of the Tropics.” That’s what they’re calling Jair Bolsonaro, the far-right politician and now president-election of Brazil, the biggest country in South American, and third biggest in the western hemisphere. He’s pledged to give the police in Brazil more powers and to plough through the rain forest and whatever Indigenous tribes that get in his way; he’s said on the record that a woman was “too ugly” for him to rape, and that fathering a daughter was “a moment of weakness.” Cool guy. But hey, he might be super good for Canadian businesses, according to this deeply cynical CBC piece. We’ll talk about all the implications.
Deniers Unite! “Nothing more than a complete scam.” That’s what Ontario Premier Doug Ford called Ottawa’s plan to impose a carbon tax starting next year, and he did it at an announcement with Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe as the two formalized an alliance to fight the federal legislation in court. Later in the week, Ford met with Conservative leadership Andrew Scheer, which, for environmental activists, means there’s a full court press to rewind action on climate change even as the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change is sounding the alarm that time’s running out. Will the climate deniers be successful in their push to cease action?
Electoral Maelstrom. Sure, we just had an election, but the time has come to talk again about how we hold elections. For this discussion, we head out again to the coast where British Columbia is counting down to the time to vote on their electoral reform referendum. Residents are being asked to choose between First Past the Post and Proportional Representation, and then to choose the preferred form of PR. Just one hiccup though as the ballots have started to arrive in mailboxes: the proponents seem to be having a hard time explaining the new systems. We’ll try and do better as we look to see if B.C. can change the way we vote.
Open Sources is live on CFRU 93.3 fm and cfru.ca at 6 pm on Thursday.