Politics and its Discontents: Two Bright Spots For Democracy

I have to admit that on most days, I am darkly pessimistic about the efficacy of democracy. With a federal government whose members are but drones of a martinet Prime Minister, and a domestic populace that seems to be asleep, indifferent, easily manipulated, divided or defeatist the majority of time, I see little basis for ...

Politics and its Discontents: Chief Bill Blair’s Gambit

It is difficult to know exactly what the repercussions will be for Chief Bill Blair, who attempted to go over the heads of his civilian overseers, the Toronto Police Services Board, and appeal directly to Mayor Rob/Doug Ford in trying to stop the mandated 10% reduction of the police budget. In his most recent meeting ...

Politics and its Discontents: The Power of the People

Despite our almost legendary passivity as a people, one small part of Canada is offering an example of what can happen when citizens shed the mantle of political disengagement that our politicians have long cultivated and counted on in order to push through their misguided policies unchecked. The small part of Canada to which I ...

Politics and its Discontents: Score Another One For Rick Salutin

Consistently able to ‘think outside the box’ of the current North American mindset, Rick Salutin, one of my favorite critical thinkers, has a column in today’s Star well-worth perusal. Entitled The sector that dares not speak its name, the thesis of his argument can be summed up by the following excerpt: “We are a society ...

Politics and its Discontents: Willful Ignorance in the Ford Administration

Toronto Mayors Rob and Doug Ford and their minions, like so many of the extreme right, tend not to let facts, reason, and data interfere with the purity of their ideological vision. Someone who describes city employees as ‘the gravy‘ and denies that eliminating daycare subsidies are cuts, but rather ‘efficiencies‘ will likely be unfazed ...

Politics and its Discontents: Christopher Hume’s Modest Proposal To The Ford Brothers

Although my right-wing friends seem to have neither an understanding nor an appreciation of irony (I’m lying – I don’t have any right-wing friends), more centered people will enjoy The Star’s Christopher Hume who, in today’s paper, has a modest proposal for Toronto’s mayor and his brother to raise revenue for the allegedly cash-starved world-class ...