Susan on the Soapbox: Go to Scotland, learn about Canada

Ms Soapbox and her eldest daughter “Missy” just returned from a 10 day trip to Scotland.  We explored Edinburgh (refined and dignified), Glasgow (gritty and boisterous) and the Highlands (majestic and dangerous). Urquhart Castle, Loch Ness Along the way something magical happened.  We learned about Scotland, but we learned even more about Canada. Cherish your ...

Montreal Simon: Scottish Independence and the Brexit Nightmare

In a few hours I'll be leaving the country and setting off for Edinburgh, to attend the wedding of one of my oldest friends.And since I'll be racing between that city, and my family home in the north of Scotland, I probably won't have time to blog until I return.Read more »

Montreal Simon: Samantha Bee On The Original Trump Haters

Scotland is a small, peaceful country, but one with a proud history of resistance dating back about two thousand years.The people of that land have had to battle all kinds of invaders, from the Roman legions of the Emperor Hadrian, to in more modern times, the vulgar presence of the mad would be Emperor Donald Trump.So ...

Montreal Simon: Justin Trudeau, Scotland, and the Values That Define Us

It was only a tweet, but it was like a flash of decency in a darkening world.It has been favourited more than 500,000 times already.And it did send a powerful message to the bigot demagogue Donald Trump.Read more »

Montreal Simon: Donald Trump’s Insane War on Wind Turbines

Of all the horrible things Donald Trump is threatening to do, and there are so many, his promise to end the war against climate change is the worst.For there is no greater threat to the future of humanity, and his claim that climate change is a hoax is not just wrong, it's insane.And if you want to ...

Montreal Simon: Why the Independence of Scotland is More Necessary Than Ever

About four years ago I made three political wishes. The first one was that Stephen Harper and foul regime be totally destroyed.And that one was granted.My second wish was that the Republican Party suffer the same fate. And whoever wins the U.S. election that also seems likely to be granted.Which leaves me with my third wish, ...

Things Are Good: Portugal Joins Other Countries by Running Only on Renewable Energy

Portugal reached a very significant milestone on its path to being fully powered by renewables by consuming energy only from sustainable resources for four days. Other countries are on similar paths. In 2012 Germany got 50% of it’s power from renewable sources, Scotland powered itself exclusively on renewables for a week earlier this year, but ...

Montreal Simon: Scottish Independence and Some Lessons For Alberta

Last Sunday was the second anniversary of Scotland's independence referendum, which as you may know, was for me a day of great disappointment.And one I'll always remember.But I haven't dared even mention the anniversary when talking to my family in the Scottish highlands, because for them it's a day best forgotten.They don't want to talk about it. ...

Montreal Simon: Scotland and the Battle to Free Canada

Every year when I return to my family home in Scotland I find myself doing the same things. Reliving my childhood on the massive beaches that line the north east coast. Returning to the bay where I first learned to sail, as the jet fighters from the nearby RAF base scream overhead.Read more »

Things Are Good: Scotland Generated Enough Renewable Energy to Power Itself

This past weekend Scotland generated enough electricity from wind turbines to meet all its power demands. A day of strong winds and low demand combined to make this the first time Scotland has achieved this renewable milestone. For a compression, in 2012 Germany got 50% of it’s electricity from renewable sources, and today Germany gets ...

Montreal Simon: My Highland Journey and Bernie Sanders’ Message of Hope

In just a few hours I'll be leaving Canada and heading for my family home in the Scottish highlands.And since I won't be able to do much blogging, and because the news is so grim these days, I thought I'd leave you with a message of hope.A message from Bernie Sanders.Read more »

The Tory Pirate - Politics & Policy: Brexit: How Not To Do Referendums

In a semi-surprising move Britain voted to leave the European Union late last week.There has been endless discussion on how bad this might be for Britain, where thecampaign to remain in the EU went wrong, and what this means for the Union’sfuture (both of them actually). What has received less attention is the fatal flaw ...

Montreal Simon: Can Scotland Really Stop Britain From Quitting the EU?

As Britain tries to recover from the shock of the Brexit referendum result. With its economy and its political scene in a turmoil.And its racist bigots on a rampage.I'm sure many of its REMAIN supporters were glad to hear Nicola Sturgeon, the First Minister of Scotland, vow to try to block Britain from divorcing the ...

Alberta Politics: Jason Kenney’s bizarre ‘Brexit’ broadsides: the explanation is in the dog-whistle

ILLUSTRATION: Press Progress’s take on Jason Kenney’s “Brexit” broadsides Thursday night and yesterday morning (Press Progress image). Below: The Acme Professional Dog Whistle, now commanding attention all over the world. It is made in U.K. You don’t even have to make this stuff up! Below that little gem, former Alberta politician Thomas Lukaszuk and Postmedia ...

Montreal Simon: Donald Trump’s Incredibly Idiot Day in Scotland

In one of my last posts I tried to explain why most Scots hate Donald Trump so much.And why so many are planning to protest his visit. And now that he has arrived in that country, there was more evidence that Trump just doesn't get it.And why he is unfit to be President of the United States.Read more ...

Montreal Simon: Scotland Prepares to Give Donald Trump a Rough Reception

It's hard for me to imagine a more disturbing image. This file picture of Donald Trump screaming like a maniac at one of his two Scottish gold courses. With a piper beaming behind him.And in the background the grass covered dunes, that line the shore of the North Sea, that I used to play on ...

Montreal Simon: Donald Trump and the Money Pit

It's the ultimate irony. Donald Trump the billionaire, who is always boasting about how much money he has.The man who claimed he could self finance his own campaign.Now finds himself in a really embarrassing position.Up to his big mouth in a money pit of his own making.Read more »

Montreal Simon: Why Nova Scotia Should Stop Honouring a War Criminal

For eighty-five years the statue of Lieutenant General Edward Cornwallis has loomed over a park in Halifax.To honour him for being the first governor of Nova Scotia, and the founder of Halifax.In recent years native groups have tried to have the statue taken down and his name removed from other parks, streets and buildings in Nova ...

Montreal Simon: The Syrian Refugees and the Friendly Holiday Isle

The other day I told you how Scotland was getting ready to welcome its first group of Syrian refugees, and how that small country had been working hard to try to make them feel at home.In a country so different from the ones they were coming from.Well now they have arrived, on a miserable cold ...

Montreal Simon: Brad Wall and the Phoney Con Refugee Scare

I like to think that in some refugee camp in the Middle East, a mother and her children have just found out that they could be in Canada in just a few weeks.And that they are a lot happier than they are in this photo.For they have been living in hell.So you can imagine how ...

Montreal Simon: Stephen Harper and the Refugee Trap That Could Destroy Him

They buried little Alan Kurdi, next to his brother and his mother yesterday, in the shattered Syrian town of Kobani. Just a week ago he was apparently jumping up and down with excitement at the thought of going to Europe, in a boat.But as we know, like so many other Syrian refugees, he never made it… But ...

Montreal Simon: A New Poll Suggests the Cons Are In Third Place

It's never easy for me to leave Scotland, the idyllic little country where a progressive government has driven the Cons to extinction.And it wasn't easy for me to blog as I biked from one small fishing village to another with my lap top in my haversack. But I did my best, for this time I couldn't wait ...

Montreal Simon: Stephen Harper and the Insanity of Harperland

I'm glad I'm leaving Canada for a while because I really need to get away from this ghastly political monster.Who is now so desperate, he is turning his depraved Harperland into a mad house.For there he was in a Bloomberg interview claiming that he was a Great Economist Leader, the steady hand on the wheel.And ...

Montreal Simon: How We Can Help Defeat Stephen Harper’s Fear Campaign

As you know, I have a dream. One that I hold tightly to my chest in this dark Harperland, where hope goes to die.The dream of defeating Stephen Harper and his foul Cons who are trying to scare Canadians into voting for them.By helping to create a Great Stop Harper movement, and using hope to ...

Bill Longstaff: Oh my God! The Japanese make better whisky than the Scots!

A year of firsts for whiskey. For instance, it’s the first time in the 12-year history of the World Whisky Bible’s rankings that a Scottish malt has failed to make the top five. Depressing news for the Scots. And it gets worse. Much, much worse—it is also the first time the top whisky was distilled ...