LISPOP in the news

One less newspaper really does matter

"A good newspaper, I suppose, is a nation talking to itself." — playwright Arthur Miller, 1961

The Guelph Mercury, which died last week at age 149, was a good newspaper. Sister paper to the Waterloo Region Record, the Mercury may not have had the reach of the Globe and Mail or the Toronto Star, but in its best days the "Merc" was the information lifeblood of Guelph and environs.

Nations of Middle East must do more to help their region

As U.S. President Barack Obama enters the final year of his presidency his popular support level has slipped below the 50 per cent mark overall, but in the area of foreign policy it is significantly lower, and has regularly registered below 40 per cent in public approval for some months.

Much of the problem seems to stem from international events and the ubiquity of terrorism pursued by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), among others, that do not comport with the kind of world that the president aspires to.

Trudeau had it and Stanfield did not

Luck is a precious thing in politics.

To take a couple of examples among Canadian leaders, Justin Trudeau has had good luck, oodles of it, in his short career, while Robert Stanfield had none when he needed it most.

Let's start with Bob Stanfield, the man they called the "best prime minister Canada never had." Stanfield was the immensely popular Progressive Conservative premier of Nova Scotia. Folks in his province contended he could keep getting re-elected as long as he lived — and maybe for one election posthumously.

Don’t change how Canadians vote

There's an old saying in Canada that if it ain't broke, don't fix it.

According to Prime Minister Trudeau and many others, however, our electoral system is broken.

The fact that a political party can win 100 per cent of the power with less than 50 per cent of the vote is a huge problem for those who worry about the tyranny of majority governments and wasted votes.

But does this mean our electoral system is broken and needs to be replaced?

The answer is no.

Trump has not gone unnoticed among Canada’s Conservatives

They say nature abhors a vacuum. So do political parties. We are seeing that this season in both the Republican party in the United States and the Conservative party in Canada.

Let’s start south of the border. Since losing their second consecutive presidential election in 2012, the Republicans have been reduced to a shell of their former selves. They have no leader, no direction and no policies other than to use their muscle in Congress to obstruct any initiatives advanced by Barack Obama and the Democrats.