Geoffrey Stevens's blog

Why did the unicorn lose his job?

In Canada, prime ministers do not publicly fire ambassadors.

From time to time, they are removed from their posts for reasons of job performance or policy differences, but the axe is wielded by the foreign affairs minister or, more likely, by the deputy minister or a subordinate.

And the cause, if any is given, will be obscured in a fog of bureaucratic opaqueness.

Until John McCallum, that is.

Trying to find sanity in the wacky world of today’s politics

Do you get the sense that political world has gone off its rails?

In Washington, the president has shut down a good part of the federal government for a month because he is in a snit over the refusal of Congress to give him $5.7 billion for a 30-foot wall to protect the United States from its southern neighbour, friend, ally and trading partner, Mexico. It’s a wall that everyone, except Trump and his core supporters, agrees will do nothing to achieve its stated purpose of keeping illegal drugs out of the U.S.

It’s time to Make Ontario Great Again

Hon. Doug Ford,
Queen’s Park,
Toronto, Ontario

My dear Premier Ford:

It’s me again, Sir, your faithful fan out here in the foothills of Ford Nation.

I’ve already written to you a couple of times, first to commend your efforts to return Ontario to the glories of the 1950s, and subsequently to endorse your invocation of the notwithstanding clause to subdue that twit, John Tory, the mayor of Toronto.

Why not ring in the New Year with a Senate seat?

A new year is the time for new beginnings, isn’t it? A time to accept new challenges and seize new opportunities.

So, if anyone is interested in a really new beginning in 2019, here is a suggestion.

Why don’t you apply for a seat in the Senate of Canada?

Yes, you can! It is no longer your grandfather’s Senate: a refuge for defeated candidates and clapped-out cabinet ministers and a reward for generous donors to the party in power. But it’s still a good gig, with an annual salary of $150,600 plus expenses and a pension on mandatory retirement at 75.

2018 was a miserable year. Will 2019 be any better?

The headline in Saturday’s Toronto Star made no bones about the newspaper’s verdict on the year that ends today:

“That’s enough, 2018. Don’t let the door hit you on the way out.”

The Star was reflecting on the miseries experienced in 2018 in the Greater Toronto Area, but a similar verdict could be rendered just about anywhere. It was a year to be forgotten, a year when we were pounded day after day by bad, often alarming, news.