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Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: Canada Post writes its own obituary

Headline news this week: Canada Post moves to end home delivery. End home delivery? For me, both as a writer, a lay historian, and growing up in an era where letters were important for communication, business, family and for art, that’s just crazy. I mean really, seriously, way-more-insane-than-the-OLG crazy. But, in an age of declining letter […]

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: What’s it all about, Alfie?

“What’s it all about, Alfie?” sings Cilla Black in the title song for the eponymous 1966 movie. But it could be the anthem for the human race, or at least those with a philosophical bent. “What’s it all about?” is certainly a question that springs to my mind daily as I listen to the news, […]

Chadwick's Blog & Commentary: Believing is Seeing

“He who permits himself to tell a lie once,” wrote Thomas Jefferson (in a letter to his nephew, Peter Carr, from Paris, France, 1785), “finds it much easier to do it a second and third time, till at length it … Continue reading →

Chadwick's Blog & Commentary: How should a municipality deal with cigarette litter?

I was sitting on a decorative rock on the landscaping west of Loblaws, this weekend, waiting while Susan was inside and amusing myself at the bad driving habits of our city visitors in the parking lot. I happened to look … Continue reading →

Chadwick's Blog & Commentary: But is it news?

Toronto Mayor Rob Ford seems to get more than his fair share of headlines these days, most of them negative. The stories that follow are full of allegation, innuendo and “unnamed sources.” Gripping tabloid stuff. Real time soap opera. But … Continue reading →

Chadwick's Blog & Commentary: Quackery and Big Bucks Infect Health Canada

Health Canada has allowed an increasing number of useless “alternative” healthcare (alternative TO healthcare in most cases) products to be sold in Canada over the last decade, despite the lack of proper (or in some cases, any) research data to … Continue reading →

Chadwick's Blog & Commentary: Understanding the Municipal Conflict of Interest Act

Another of the Acts that direct municipal governance is the Municipal Conflict of Interest Act. While considerably shorter than the previously-discussed Municipal Act – eight pages, 15 sections and less than 3,500 words – it is of perhaps equal importance. While … Continue reading →

Chadwick's Blog & Commentary: Propaganda, PR and Spin

What is propaganda? The word gets thrown around easily by people who obviously mean “anything we dislike or don’t agree with.” It’s a pejorative often used by a small group to describe anything official that any level of government puts … Continue reading →

Chadwick's Blog & Commentary: Musings on representational democracy

Representational democracy, says Wikipedia, is “…founded on the principle of elected people representing a group of people, as opposed to direct democracy. All modern Western style democracies are various types of representative democracies…” And so is Canada, and by extension … Continue reading →

Chadwick's Blog & Commentary: The Art of Worldly Wisdom

Published in 1637, The Art of Worldly Wisdom is a collection of 300 aphorisms about life, behaviour, politics, morality, faith, philosophy and society. One comment, on Amazon.ca called it, somewhat unfairly to Machiavelli, “Machiavelli with a soul.” I have been … Continue reading →

Chadwick's Blog & Commentary: Is Tar Baby the new N-Word?

As far back as I can recall, the term “tar baby” was a metaphor in common political parlance for a “sticky situation.” It has no racial meaning in that context, any more than saying “honey trap” or “sticky wicket.” Both … Continue reading →

Chadwick's Blog & Commentary: The Hidden Costs of Gambling

Let’s start 2013 with a sober consideration of the social and economic costs of gambling. Back n 2006, the Canadian Medical Association noted that, “Provincial governments may be glossing over the societal and health costs of problem gambling, including depression and … Continue reading →

Chadwick's Blog & Commentary: Gambling and the local economy part 2

Seventy three dollars. It’s not a large amount if you’re middle class, certainly not if you’re Conrad Black. But for others it can be significant. If you’re on minimum wage, it’s a full day’s wage, before taxes. If you’re a senior on a … Continue reading →

Chadwick's Blog & Commentary: Tax the Rich – a video

You really should watch this video. It explains in clear, simple terms the argument of the billionaires and the rest of us. I like it because – while it’s simplistic – it is succinct and presents its argument in a … Continue reading →

Chadwick's Blog & Commentary: Mayors Under Siege: Why Laws Must Change

Toronto Mayor Rob Ford is planning to appeal the recent judicial decision that ousted him from office for failing to obey one of the basic rules of municipal governance. In fact, during the hearing, he admitted never having read the Municipal … … . . . → Read More: Chadwick’s Blog & Commentary: Mayors Under Siege: Why Laws Must Change