Babel-on-the-Bay: “Nice suits and empty slogans.”

That comment about suits and slogans was in the last line of the Toronto Star’s pompous editorial on “The challenge for Singh.” The newspaper editorialists want Singh and Trudeau to square off on progressive policy issues in the 2019 federal election. Lot’s of luck on that! But the problem is that the Star writers think ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: It is time to fire Bill Morneau, Justin.

Bill Morneau has a straight-forward job. As complex as the Finance Department might appear to the average Canadian, the Member of Parliament for Toronto Centre has the credentials that say he should be capable of handling the finance portfolio. He is also considered to be a generally good guy. It is really too bad that ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Netflix should be told to “Get Stuffed.”

Canada’s heritage minister needs a better understanding of Canada’s heritage. Another of the junior grade ministers in the Trudeau cabinet, Mélanie Joly, defended Netflix last week. It was a betrayal of Canadian actors, production capabilities and our French-speaking citizens as well as a allowing a leach to defy Canadian broadcast and tax rules. Joly welcomed ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Americans bomb Bombardier.

Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard and the prime ministers of both the United Kingdom and Canada are furious and have spoken out angrily about the proposed 219.6 per cent duty on Bombardier planes purchased by Delta Airlines. This is a direct and brutal attack on the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and on the very ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: The problem for political pundits.

While waiting to hear the New Democratic Party leadership tallies yesterday, I was reading what Mainstreet Technology’s Quito Magi had to say about the race. Having worked with Quito in the past, I have often had the feeling that he should forego all this technology and make an arrangement with a healthy young groundhog, to ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Singh misreads Canadian acceptance.

Ontario MPP Jagmeet Singh is heading for some disappointment. It would really be better if he faced it this weekend instead of in the next federal election. As the obvious frontrunner in the announcement this weekend of the first vote in the New Democratic Party leadership race, it would be better if he did not ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Is NAFTA circling the drain?

You always assume there is hope as long as negotiations continue—as they are for the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) this week in Ottawa. The only problem is that the negotiators are not the decision makers. The final solution rests with an incompetent occupant in the White House. And you should not try to ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Trudeau’s terrific travels!

Canadians sure get full measure when they send their prime minister on a personal appearance tour. He did more in two days in New York than most rock stars can do in a week.  The British prime minister and that New Yorker who currently occupies the Washington White House were also in town but the ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: ‘Chuckles’ cheers the cheaters.

There are two types of people who take advantage of Canada’s tax laws and form private corporations. There are those who legitimately pay family members (and others) for their work and there are those who sprinkle the income among family to avoid taxes. It is this second group that is so delighted that Conservative Opposition ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: What ‘New’ Democratic Party?

We are hearing that ‘Love is in the air’ and the New Democratic Party of Canada is facing the future to the beat of new drums. Everyone anticipates that this new day will start with the election of the new leader of the party. And if you believe all this guff, I have a fine ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Canada’s NDP: In the eye of the storm.

It is that period of calm before all hell breaks loose. Everything you could have done, has been done. Everything you have set in motion is now in motion. You are waiting for the results. You cannot sleep. All possible scenarios seem to slip unwished for into your mind. You are waiting for the decision ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Frum, from hunger!

The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation news used to have balanced panels to help Canadians understand issues. That idea seems to be gone along with Peter Mansbridge. Instead we can now get a biased, neo-conservative David Frum being lobbed soft-ball questions by an admiring news reader. And who trusts that? What is even more annoying, Barbara Frum’s ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: The water of life.

A handful of snow melting on a peak in the Rockies can become part of a torrent by the time it reaches the ocean. It is the water of life for the creatures of both land and sea. It is a place for salmon to spawn, the creatures of the forest to drink and humans ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: The reluctant reformers!

It must have confused Justin Trudeau’s campaign team in the 2015 federal election when they realized that Thomas Mulcair and his New Democratic Party were running to the political right of them. Their first problem in that overly long election campaign was how to stretch out their planned promises. And obviously more supposed reform promises ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Hébert hails the Hair.

It is unlikely that many of political commentator Chantal Hébert’s fans read her Toronto Star columns for the humour. It is only occasionally that she writes with her tongue firmly in cheek. If you missed her most recent column, you missed a gem. She actually wrote of how the Hair (Stephen Harper) saved Canada from ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: How’s the kitchen coming Chrystia?

Though not sure if the analogy of NAFTA negotiations being like renovating a kitchen comes from Canada’s foreign minister, by now she would disown the quote anyway. After meetings in Washington and in Mexico City, it is obvious that the discussions of North America’s trade agreements are going nowhere. By the time the three amigo ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: For love of country.

Travel in Europe, Asia and throughout North America has helped strengthen my love for Canada. When people in other countries tell me how much they admire our country, I rarely try to explain that we are still a work in progress. There is no need to tell them that we could certainly ratchet up our ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: The Morning Line: Canada’s NDP Leadership

Our best advice to the New Democratic Party is that they forget the next Federal election and concentrate on finding a modern direction for their party. And we have no idea whose membership numbers we were looking at when we assumed that the NDP had closer to 200,000 members in 2016. With the party growing ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: French fuss over makeup for Macron?

In France, they are fussing over the cost of makeup and makeup artists to keep their new president Emmanuel Macron looking good for his public appearances. If they had any idea what it cost Canadians for the Harper hair and makeup during his regime as Canada’s prime minister, they would consider Macron’s costs reasonable. The ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: What’s wrong at NDP HQ?

There was a promise that Babel-on-the-Bay would publish its Morning Line on the New Democratic Party leadership today. That is hardly possible when we have been stalled by the party not yet releasing its new membership figures. Without these figures to analyze and compute along with our knowledge of the people involved, we have no ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Lottsa’ Luck Senator Duffy!

Senator Mike Duffy already has his payoff. He is still being paid as a member of Canada’s parliament. The report that he wants to sue the Senate and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police is an insult to both bodies. And the suggestion that Duffy’s case is anything like that of Omar Khadr is erroneous, disgusting ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Justin Trudeau doesn’t have the chops.

It is often amusing when Canadian writers try to compare Prime Minister Trudeau with American President Trump. They seem to think that Justin Trudeau has been understudying for his current role all his life, while Donald Trump is an accidental politician and is only now learning that the job requires some serious time and attention. ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: In Beautiful Barcelona.

Barcelona is one of the finest cities for tourism in Europe. Its excellent hotels, broad boulevards and beautiful buildings also provide an excellent venue for international meetings and conferences. In the time I spent in Spain, the Spanish earned my deep respect for their civility, industriousness and kindness. It is to be regretted though that ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Pollyanna goes to Washington.

They gathered in Washington this week to start renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). Canada’s foreign minister Chrystia Freeland took along her plans for a new NAFTA. Just to throw another opinion into the mix, I think we might have sent our Pollyanna foreign minister to an autopsy. While we all listened to ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Jagmeet’s ‘means test.’

It is a trap that more and more New Democratic Party spokespeople are falling into. By denying universality of programs, they think they are attracting voters from the right. They are not. They are setting themselves up for failure with their traditional supporters. It is a losing proposition. And when Jagmeet Singh poses his challenge ...