Category Archives: Politics

Because it’s 2015

There are a lot of symbolic things that Trudeau and his new government have done today, especially when it comes to telegraphing that they will be serious about issues which have faced aboriginal Canadians.  But the best soundbite of this morning’s ceremonies was his answer to the question of why the cabinet should be comprised of 50% women and 50% men.

“Because it’s 2015.”

I’m fairly realistic, I don’t expect this new government to be that dramatically different from other Liberal governments in the past, but it is pleasant to see them bowing to reality and facts for a change.  The fact that women are underrepresented in leadership positions is something that was within their power to address at the top level so it is refreshing to see some action.

Go Vote on Monday

It’s that time again.  Whatever you do or whoever you support, make sure you get out to vote in this Monday’s federal election.

If you aren’t sure where your closest polling station is or if you have any other questions Elections Canada has a set of helpful tools and an FAQ on their site.

http://www.elections.ca/

Mulcair: C-51

This is an interesting article linking the NDP’s fate to their stance on C-51.  While undoubtedly this is one of the worst pieces of legislation that has been proposed since I have been a qualified elector, I’m a bit surprised that Mulcair appears to be benefiting from taking a strong position here.

I’m going to keep my eyes on it, depending on where things go this could become a single issue election for me.

Postal Service

As I mentioned, I went on a recent camera gear bender and bought a couple of lenses which I’ve had my eye on for a long time.  One of them, a fast telephoto lens, I decided to buy used on eBay from Japan.  It was a stressful decision since I was worried about all kinds of things (am I going to get ripped off, will it be damaged, etc.) but one thing not to worry about is shipping.  The seller shipped it using Japan Post’s Express Mail Service and between them and Canada Post it’s been nothing short of amazing.

The package was dropped off on the 13th at 20:13 local in Tokyo and I came home tonight to a Canada Post slip on my door saying they tried to deliver but needed a signature.  It landed at Pearson this morning at 08:46.

Considering this cost less than $20 shipping that’s pretty much as good as it gets.  Anybody who tells you that we don’t get a great service from Canada Post doesn’t really know what they’re talking about.  In fact over the past few years, something I’ve noticed consistently is that the national postal services in the countries I’ve shipped to and from (Germany, UK, Sweden, US, Canada, and Japan) are near the top every time and their ability to ship between services and across borders is every bit as good as any commercial parcel service.

Dying with Dignity and Judicial Freedom (or Activism)

So Canada will soon have a legal framework for euthanasia despite the fact that Harper fought it tooth and nail.

I’m not 100% certain how I feel about this, but I think that’s normal.  Like many issues relating to life and death it’s complicated so this is a pretty normal feeling I suppose.  In fact, I tend to distrust people who don’t have any ambiguous thought at all when it comes to political-medical issues.

In either case, it’s good to know that even under one of the most right wing governments Canada has had in the past half century, the framework of the Constitution is standing up for fundamental freedoms in a way that evolves with the times.  This has had me thinking a lot about the long term effect of having a modern legal framework which is based on 20th century norms of justice and human rights.  As controversial as some elements are, we have a lot to be thankful here and we should be happy that the court under McLachlin has managed to remain largely free of interference from both Chrétien and Harper.

I know that some on the right have portrayed this as judicial activism (and not in a positive way) but I’m very happy that our legal system at the judicial level at least, still seems to be largely aloof of the government.  I really can’t imagine that the country would be a better place if it weren’t.

Vox: Canada legalizes physician-assisted suicide

Margot Wallström is Heroic for Speaking the Truth

I came across this article tonight on Reddit.  It’s worth a read, I was unaware of the story.

The Spectator: Sweden’s feminist foreign minister has dared to tell the truth about Saudi Arabia. What happens now concerns us all

It’s a long headline but it certainly doesn’t bury the lede.  I only wish that Canada’s Foreign Minister was of Margot Wallström’s calibre.