Babel-on-the-Bay: Who’s congratulating Trudeau?

Stephen Harper’s PMO had a revolving door for communications people, so it is not too surprising if we do not remember one of them. This is in reference to an op-ed in the Toronto Star last week by someone named ‘MacDougall.’ What was noticeable about the article was that he claims to be a Tory ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Is there any hope for Horwath?

Every once in a while, we are reminded that there are three parties at play for the right to hold the lease on the Pink Palace looking down University Avenue from Queen’s Park. We know lots about the Liberals that currently hold the lease. We know more than we want to know about the Conservatives ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: It’s always controversy for PC leader Brown.

The leader of Ontario Conservatives has too many balls in the air. Here he is trying to run the strategy, organize the electoral districts, pick the candidates and run the nomination meetings. The only jobs he has forgotten is to show leadership and to help the party choose policies. Since the party seems to have ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: The history of image politics.

It must be your age that determines when history began. Reading an op-ed in the paper last week, there was a public relations guy who thought that image politics only went back to the time of American President Ronald Regan. He must have missed the lecture on the image of President Theodore Roosevelt. Teddy, as ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: ‘Chuckles’ leads from the rear.

It is embarrassing. ‘Chuckles’ Scheer showed up on television last week from the Calgary Stampede to blast the federal government for its generosity to Omar Kadr. It was a classic illustration of a political brain fart. It was bigoted, it was inaccurate, it was mean-spirited and it was knee-jerk Conservatism from the newly chosen Conservative ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Picking preferred politicians.

This is not really about Donald Trump. It was just when reading the complaints of an academic about the choice of Trump that it became obvious that all he was saying was that we need to have smarter voters. In many years of working on elections for political parties or for the returning officer, you ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: On being nice to Premier Wynne.

It could be hard to get used to doing this. The problem basically is that as a liberal all my life, it is very difficult to accept Kathleen Wynne as a liberal. She is not a liberal and I do not like the way she has been running Ontario. But…(life is full of ‘Buts’ isn’t ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Alberta’s Right, Hard Right and Extreme Right.

Former right-hand man for Stephen Harper, Jason Kenney has his “do or die” vote on July 22. It’s his chance to “unite the right” in Alberta. Conservative Party and Wildrose Party members will vote whether or not to come together as the United Conservative Party of Alberta. There are a few stumbling blocks along the ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: The Prince of the Past.

Prince Charles, Prince of Wales will be a pathetic pallbearer likely to be tasked to shut down the House of Windsor. As a family business, the House of Windsor inherited a somewhat convoluted history going back to Alfred the Great in 871. Charles will have more than a few royal ghosts with whom to make ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: A purchased presidency.

Is it possible to place a price on the American presidency? Can its worth even be determined? Whatever the price might be, it probably is nowhere near the damages being done to America’s honour and reputation by Donald Trump. And why nobody has thought to sue him remains a mystery. Does the American president have ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: NDP searching for succour

Every once in while, we look in on the New Democratic Party’s sputtering national leadership discussion. It is really more of a crawl than a race. And when you look at the four remaining candidates in the selection process for this fall, you wonder why they are bothering. The basic problem is that none of ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: The NRA’s ‘Call to Arms.’

Anywhere but America, this would be considered an act of treason. Why anyone involved in directing the National Rifle Association of America is not locked away at this time is the question? Instead the argument rages as to the truth of a recent advertisement created to support the NRA. To understand the argument, you need ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Rule of law beats bigotry.

We should all get down on our knees and thank whatever God we worship that we live in a land ruled by law. This argument over a multi-million-dollar settlement and an apology for Omar Kadr is a disgrace. It is not a political decision. It is a legal settlement for years of torture and mistreatment ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Getting to know Patrick Brown.

Thank goodness for Newton’s third law. It is the law of physics that says for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. It also seems to be a law of politics. It just works differently. It is like those commercials being given intense exposure on Ontario television recently to introduce provincial Conservative leader ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Are these the summer doldrums?

Why do the talking heads of television shut down for the summer? While we know that it is just our hardcore readers who drop by during these months, we are not going to let them down. There is lots to discuss. That takeover by Jason Kenney in Alberta has yet to be resolved. The attempt ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: A land big enough for a rubber ducky.

That churlish little man, Conservative leader Patrick Brown, stood in the Ontario legislature a while ago to make fun of a rubber ducky he had never even met. That rubber ducky has now arrived and that silly man can quack all he likes, that rubber ducky adds something to an otherwise dull harbour. And that ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Expo 67: A sharp turn for Canada.

It was 50 years ago that the wife and I went to Montreal and camped for a week at my brother’s house while we spent our days at Expo 67. It was in glorious summer weather and we had a wonderful time in line at exhibits with people from all over the world. We met ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: The tremors of Trump.

Each year at this time, we do a little introspection. While Canada Day 2017 is as joyous as ever, we feel it is the impact of the American President that causes those ground tremors we are feeling. The man seems to stomp a lot. At first, we were under the impression that he might just ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: ‘Chuckles’ Scheer is no attack dog.

It was two Regina MPs who helped Vassy Kapelos to wrap up her West Block show on Global TV for the summer. As she had Prime Minister Justin Trudeau the week before, she brought on the new Leader of the Opposition Andrew Scheer this week. She also took another shot at asking Public Safety Minister ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Duking it out over hydrogen power.

Smart politicians stay out of arguments over technology. This was the point we were trying to make in our June 20 comments on the multi-billion-dollar plan to electrify Ontario’s Toronto-area commuter train services. It was never our intent to put down the idea of hydrogen-powered trains. It is very important to realize that the billions ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Inviting President Trump.

In politics, you are not always able to dine with people you like. All to often you have to deal with the position rather than the person. And in the case of someone such as the President of the United States of America, the position outranks the person. And what would you ever expect to ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Harry says nobody wants the crown!

That was the good news the other day. In an interview with American Newsweek Magazine, Prince Harry of the House of Windsor said that nobody in the royal family really aspires to being King or Queen. What Harry probably meant was that it would be unseemly for any royal to want the crown while it ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Spring clean out for Ontario booze.

Have you got it figured out yet? Every few years, the Liquor Control Board of Ontario (LCBO) thinks it will be a good time to clean its warehouses. To facilitate this house cleaning, it tries to clear all its warehouse shelves. It makes it easier to dust them. But you never see the LCBO doing ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Granny Wynne knows best.

The current argument between Ontario’s New Democrats and the Ontario Liberals is like a school yard spat over who did what. It is not only childish but it makes both sides of the argument look foolish. They are arguing over who thought of having a mediocre pharmacare plan first. Neither side has much of which ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: The political position in public protests.

One of the most important classes you attend in the reality school of politics is that of the public protest. You have to learn your lessons fast. You learn how people can organize and lead and maximize the media value. You also learn to find the other guy’s organizer and how to neutralize the person ...