National

Ban on imported seal products upheld; Ottawa to appeal

Ban on imported seal products upheld; Ottawa to appeal

The European Union (EU) will continue its ban on imported seal products, despite the Canadian government's appeal that it violates fair trade agreements. 

Doing Time

Doing Time

Many Norwegians responded in disbelief and anger when it was announced that convicted mass murderer Anders Breivik had enrolled in a political science course at the University of Oslo. Allowing a mass murderer to enroll in a university course was going too far. The university’s rector, Ole Petter Ottersen, explained that Breivik will not be admitted to campus, and that he will pursue his studies in his cell. Ottersen held that changing the law which allows convicts to further their education, reacting to his crimes with a lex Breivik, would place Norway on a slippery slope.

Toronto police bring down international child pornography ring

Toronto police bring down international child pornography ring

At least 386 children have been saved from child exploitation around the world, thanks to Project Spade – a massive, international investigation headed by the Toronto Police Service (TPS).

The TPS started investigating a Toronto-based individual that was suspected of sharing graphic images of children being sexual abused in 2010.

This investigation led officers to uncover a company called Azov Films, which allegedly created and distributed images and videos of child pornography.

Moving Beyond Our Obsession with Stephen Harper

Moving Beyond Our Obsession with Stephen Harper

Remember Brian Mulroney, the PM so many people loved to hate? We need to remember him so we can learn a lesson from that period in our political history: there is a real danger in demonizing prime ministers to the exclusion of other longer term political objectives. Mulroney’s unctuous manner, his arrogance and his shameless toadying to the U.S. and to corporate CEOs made people crazed with anger at the man.

COMMENT: What would a trade agreement intended to benefit all Canadians look like?

COMMENT: What would a trade agreement intended to benefit all Canadians look like?

This is of more than academic concern right now as the Harper Conservative government will eventually unveil the full details of the Canada-European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA).

From what we know about it now this agreement is little more than a ‘corporate bill of rights’. It gives corporations even more power to shift investment as they see fit and directly strengthens their interests in everything from public procurement to patent laws.

When lives are lost, have we taken deregulation too far?

When lives are lost, have we taken deregulation too far?

The history of regulations goes back to the early civilizations of Greece and Egypt. Their purpose then as it is now is to protect society from the negative consequences of risks and hazards. Regulations, backed by the power of laws, govern what we wear, what we eat, where and how we live, and all but the most benign of our daily activities. From seat belts to light switches, from milk cartons to band aids, almost everything we touch, look at and do is subject to regulations of one kind or another.

The Crisis of Extreme Capitalism

The Crisis of Extreme Capitalism

Our current incarnation of capitalism — variously referred to as savage capitalism, extreme capitalism or euphemistically as the “free market” (free of any constraints) — is in one of its periodic crises. For years many assumed that the smart people who ran the system and benefitted from it would find a practical way to fix it. The problem is that the solutions are all framed within an ideology that makes that extremely unlikely. That ideology, neo-liberalism, is like a religion. Once you are a true believer you see other solutions as heresy.

OPEN LETTER TO THE PM: Leave our British past...in the past

OPEN LETTER TO THE PM: Leave our British past...in the past

Mr. Harper:

I write about your directing our military to revert to the use of British military rank insignias and designations after 45 years of a home-grown Canadian system. I also note that you previously had directed our services to revert to 'Royal' services in name, indicating service under the Queen of England.

My wife and I spent 16 years out of country and were delighted when we came back to find how Canadian identity and pride had grown noticeably. To us, this was a very good thing.

Reinventing progressive politics

Reinventing progressive politics

We are so accustomed to the connection between political parties and democracy that to question the relationship between the two might seem absurd. But for those who recognize the multiple crises faced by humanity — the destruction of our environment, climate change, the ravages of unfettered finance capital, the undeniable limits to growth — the failure of our liberal, multi-party democracies seems increasingly obvious.

To many people, the millions who can’t even be bothered to vote, they are simply irrelevant.

BC’s Election Stunner: Five Lessons for the Left

BC’s Election Stunner: Five Lessons for the Left

The NDP’s stunning loss in B.C. is being deconstructed, dissected, analyzed and mourned over not only here but across the country. Every pundit and political junkie, including me, thought the NDP would win, even after their lead suddenly dropped. But unfortunately, most of the analysis won’t be very helpful for those individuals and organizations hoping and fighting for a better country.

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