In This Corner: The Return of Stuff Happens, week 1: The taxman cometh

Here in the Glorious People’s Republic of Alberta, we have begun the process of saving the Earth, 4.5 cents a litre at a time. The NDP government introduced its Climate Change Plan Jan. 1 , slapping taxes on the stuff that we use to drive our vehicles and heat our homes. The fuel tax is ...

In This Corner: Stuff Still Happens, week 8: Deficits, drugs and death

The big issue of the week in Canada, where we worry about these things for some reason, was deficits. The new Liberal government, which promised to run a $10 billion deficit to boost the economy, is instead going to be about $30 billion in the hole. Here in the People’s Republic of Alberta, the provincial ...

In This Corner: Stuff Still Happens, week 3: The slow death of the daily newspaper

And so, the era of competitive newspapers in Canada has come to an end. This week, the wretched Postmedia group consolidated the newsrooms in four cities where they own both papers, including Edmonton. The Edmonton Journal and the Edmonton Sun — once bitter foes whose rivalry benefited Edmonton — are now together in one newsroom, ...

In This Corner: Stuff happens, week 8: Alberta election assured; Harper spins terrorism

It’s gloom and doom in Alberta these days, what with falling oil prices and all. Time to tighten the belts, Premier Jim Prentice says, because we’re going to be billions of dollars short in the ol’ piggy bank. Hmmm…. so how come the government is predicting a $465-million surplus for the end of the fiscal ...

In This Corner: Stuff Happens, Week 2. Target misses the mark, Roxy razed.

The big story of the week in Canada was the departure, with its tail between its legs, of U.S. retail giant Target. The purveyor of so-called ‘cheap chic’ clothing is a big hit in the U.S., but its venture into Canada was a disaster of New Coke proportions. Empty shelves, so-so prices, and the store’s ...

LeDaro: Rob Ford Goes to Hollywood

 Rob Ford is gone Hollywood and is also going to the Oscars, he is quite the actor and his performance deserves an Oscar. He has been a train-wreck as a  mayor but very entertaining. Ford does love the attention – even if it is for drug use and crass behaviour. He must have enjoyed the ...

In This Corner: The Oscars: Look no further, here are the winners …

Like millions of other Canadians, I will watch the Academy Awards on Sunday, and like millions of other Canadians, four hours later I will hate myself for watching it. So, for those of you who don’t want to watch it, but want to know the winners, here they are … Director: Easy one. Nine of ...

Art Threat: Bowling for Columbine turns ten

Editor’s note: Art Threat has launched a cultural archaeological project that involves digging up previously published but now inaccessible film reviews and cultural musings from Montreal-based writer and teacher Matthew Hays. We’re calling it The Hays Files, and to get things rolling, we’re republishing a review Hays wrote of Bowling for Columbine when the documentary ...

drive-by planet: Argo: American propaganda wins best picture at the Oscars

The Hollywood-White House embrace was front and center when Michelle Obama was beamed into the Oscars, military personnel behind her, to announce the best picture pick. Surprise, surprise… Argo, replete with revisionist pro-American propaganda, was the Oscar winner. The Hollywoodization of entertainment is bad enough, what’s worse is Hollywood-as-political-tool. Argo is loaded with a cargo ...

Art Threat: Low-class Oscars leave the ladies booing

To this day the most difficult thing I’ve ever had to do in my career was stand in front of a group of 300 university students in my role as president of an student newspaper organization – my peers at the time – and explain to them that they needed to rise above sexist  (or ...

Politics and Entertainment: Why a completely unremarkable film called Argo won the Oscar

How ironically fitting that Michelle Obama announced the Oscar for the winning picture. Argo is a putative “true” story from the not too distant U.S. past – a past to which American viewers can easily relate – a feel good story of American perseverance, ingenuity, courage, an inspiring version of U. S. exceptionalism resulting in a bloodless American victory ...

Politics and Entertainment: Why a completely unremarkable film called Argo won the Oscar

How ironically fitting that Michelle Obama announced the Oscar for the winning picture. Argo is a putative “true” story from the not too distant U.S. past – a past to which American viewers can easily relate – a feel good story of American perseverance, ingenuity, courage, an inspiring version of U. S. exceptionalism resulting in a bloodless American victory ...

Politics and Entertainment: Why a completely unremarkable film called Argo won the Oscar

How ironically fitting that Michelle Obama announced the Oscar for the winning picture. Argo is a putative “true” story from the not too distant U.S. past – a past to which American viewers can easily relate – a feel good story of American perseverance, ingenuity, courage, an inspiring version of U. S. exceptionalism resulting in a bloodless American victory ...

The Scott Ross: The Awe Of Oscar

Nothing seems more of a waste of time and money than the Oscars. Last night for over three hours millions of people, statistics of which show 7-9% of them unemployed and most of the others barely scraping by in menial labour, watched wealthy celebrities in designer dresses get out of limos, walk down red carpets, ...

A Novelist's Mind: Lilian Nattel Online: And the Winner Is…

Me! Because I got to watch the Oscars last night with the 2 most amazing kids in the universe. H stayed up for the first half. (And had trouble getting out of bed this morning. It required several loud Uh Oh’s on my part and “your nose has grown to the size of a pumpkin. ...