From the category archives:

Canada eh

Google searches for “moving to Canada” rose by 1000% after the US primary “Super Tuesday” results:

In the four hours around the close of polls across Super Tuesday states, searches for “how can I move to Canada” on Google spiked by 350%. By midnight, the query had risen to more than 1000% its normal search volume. It was especially high in Massachusetts, where Trump dominated the field with just under 50 per cent of the vote.

It’s trendy for Americans to talk about moving to Canada if their candidate loses an election. It’s far less common for them to actually do it. According to Statistics Canada, about 9,000 Americans move to Canada per year, compared with about 33,000 Canadians who move to the US annually. And the US has 10 times as many people as we do, so the discrepancy is even bigger when you look at per capita numbers. Politics aside, most people move for more practical reasons, like jobs.

… But if this time you really, really mean it, I’ll be considering marriage applications as of September.

Criteria:

  • Any gender (this is Canada after all)
  • Any socioeconomic status (we have socialized healthcare and a considerable social safety net; I don’t need to marry you for your money)
  • Preferably a nice person (’cause we’re nice in Canada, eh?)
  • Must love snow
  • Must hate guns
  • Must be able to quote John Oliver at length. And eventually Rick Mercer, though I’ll allow you some time to brush up first.
  • Bonus points for sending me chocolate with your application
  • Bonus points for witticisms about Drumpf’s hair

Please forward all applications to getmeoutofhere@greatwhitenorth.eh

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There are petitions going around urging Justin Trudeau to appoint Elizabeth May as Environment Minister.

I think that’s a terrible idea. Here’s why:

After a decade of Stephen Harper’s “war on science”, we finally have a government committed to returning to evidence-based decision making. Trudeau wants to bring back the long form census. He wants to make scientific committees independent again. He’s committed to bringing knowledge and scientific literacy back into public policy.

Elizabeth May and the Green Party, on the other hand, are a fringe party with a strong fringe lunatic contingent. Yes, they’re shiny and feisty people are prone to like them, and May in particular.

But when you chip away at the surface a little bit, you discover that this party supports or has supported all sorts of The Crazy: Anti-GMO, anti-vaccine, worried about cell phone radiation, pro-public health coverage for “alternative” medicine such as naturopathy or homeopathy. It goes on and on:

“After reading the above, I suppose what follows is less of a shock, but it’s still pretty bad. The following points are all part of the Green Party’s health care platform:

Provide funds to expand provincial health insurance to cover proven alternative therapies that are less expensive and invasive such as chiropractic, massage, acupuncture. (p. 68)

We will promote complimentary health care – through support of chiropractic, naturopathic, homeopathic, and other non-western practices. The Green Party of Canada recognizes the value of good health as a fundamental human right, and also the key to the most vibrant, inclusive and sustainable Canadian society possible. (p. 71)

Expand healthcare coverage to include qualified complementary/alternative health professionals such as naturopaths, acupuncturists, homeopaths, licensed massage therapists, chiropractors, and dietitians. (p. 73)

And sure, the above was from their 2011 platform. Since then, the Green Party has backpedaled on some of that nonsense. But not all of it. Which makes sense when you consider that it’s a fringe party, and has to pander to its fringe base for votes. If the party were to grow to become more mainstream, it’s likely that the fringe element would be calmed. But that’s not enough.

I want someone as environment minister who finally is going to make real, evidence-based policy decisions about the environment and fight climate change based on actual science. There’s just no room for woo in this job.

While I applaud the spirit of reaching across the aisle, I think Elizabeth May is wrong for the job. I’d think she was wrong for the job if she were a Liberal, too.

In my opinion, someone like Stephane Dion would make a terrific environment minister. There may be other places where Trudeau could reach across the aisle. But please don’t do it at the expense of science.

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It’s a Liberal majority!

10.20.2015

Wow. Just wow. Prime Minister Trudeau. It’s been a long time since Canada has heard those words. Before my lifetime, anyway. I dared hope for a Liberal minority. I never in my wildest dreams could have predicted a Liberal majority. The Tories have been turfed out. Stephen Harper has announced he will step down as [...]

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Pollwatch: Dirty tricks as Canadians vote

10.19.2015

#Pollwatch: I’ve been hearing reports of people having difficulty voting, despite being on the voter registration list and showing up with multiple forms of ID. Via the Orwellian-named “Fair Elections Act“, Stephen Harper is trying to make it more difficult for people to vote, and I fear he may be succeeding. Don’t let him get [...]

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John Oliver on Canadian Election: Don’t vote for Harper

10.19.2015

John Oliver is one of my favourite comedian-slash-pundits. Last night, he took on the topic of the Canadian federal election, as only he could: Now, it’s true that this is a bit of a lighthearted treatment of the topic, with plenty of room for moose jokes and Canadian stereotypes. But remember that Oliver is addressing [...]

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Let’s do this, Canada!

10.18.2015

Well, it’s been a really long slog of a campaign. But either way, it all ends tomorrow. So I’ll just leave you with this plea: Please get out and vote — it CAN and WILL make a difference. If you’re not sure where or when to vote, visit www.elections.ca. If you aren’t sure who to [...]

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Pre-election thoughts

10.16.2015

Thoughts heading into the weekend before the election: ‪ Polls showing a Liberal surge are going to help Trudeau‪‬, as anti-Harper voters get off the fence and hop on the bandwagon of the party they perceive as most likely to beat the Tories. Having said that, recent polls don’t reflect the Dan Gagnier resignation over [...]

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The Guardian on Stephen Harper

10.15.2015

The Guardian has published a damning, point by point account of how the Harper‬ government has cheated, lied, blustered and outright steamrolled over democracy on their way to three consecutive election victories.   An unkind cartoon this summer showed the Canadian prime minister, Stephen Harper, kneeling before the statue of another politician, asking: “What now, [...]

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13 thoughts after watching the Vice interviews with Trudeau and Mulcair

10.14.2015

Stephen Harper is an idiot for refusing to do this interview. They lobbed softballs for the most part, and he might have even scored some points with young Canadians. His silence speaks volumes about how little he cares about anyone under the age of 35. Then again, we already knew that. Holy crap, I’m not [...]

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Tories, Israel, and Chutzpah

10.09.2015

Two weeks ago, like Jewish people around the world, I went to my local synagogue on Yom Kippur for Kol Nidre prayers. I saw a giant “Shana Tova” campaign poster just outside my shul in Westmount proclaiming the Conservatives as the only party that will stand by Israel “through fire and water”. It wasn’t just [...]

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