Categories for Musings

Recipe for Hate is a finalist in a national literature contest!


I don’t think I could ever win against such amazing authors, but it’s an honour to have Recipe for Hate described thusly:

“Welcome to the birth of Punk – when ‘misfits’ took to the streets to speak up for themselves and others like them, through art, music and clothes…. Recipe for Hate is an intense and sometimes uncomfortable read, especially knowing the story is based on real events… A great look into the history of music and what it means to be an outcast.”

Wow. Gala is at the end of October. Pretty cool.

Get your copy here!


Column: Leaky McLeakface

There’s leaks, and there’s leaks. And then there’s the leak the New York Times got.

It was splashed across last Wednesday’s paper, to the extent that the Old Gray Lady “splashes” anything on its front page: “I AM PART OF THE RESISTANCE INSIDE THE TRUMP ADMINISTRATION.”

Wow. Like, wow.

To ensure that no one missed the significance of the piece, the Times’ editorial board – who are the only ones who reportedly know the identity of the leaker – topped the resister’s tale with this:

“The Times today is taking the rare step of publishing an anonymous Op-Ed essay. We have done so at the request of the author, a senior official in the Trump administration whose identity is known to us and whose job would be jeopardized by its disclosure. We believe publishing this essay anonymously is the only way to deliver an important perspective to our readers.”

You don’t get onto the front page of the most influential newspaper on the planet by being the West Wing janitor. While we don’t presently know the author’s name, we can be reasonably assured that he or she holds a position of power.

And his or her essay spilled the proverbial beans, and then some. Here are some of the juicier bits:

“Senior officials in his own administration are working diligently from within to frustrate parts of his agenda and his worst inclinations. I would know. I am one of them.”

And:

“We believe our first duty is to this country, and the president continues to act in a manner that is detrimental to the health of our republic.”

And:

“The root of the problem is the president’s amorality. Anyone who works with him knows he is not moored to any discernible first principles that guide his decision making.”

And:

“The president’s leadership style, which is impetuous, adversarial, petty and ineffective. From the White House to executive branch departments and agencies, senior officials will privately admit their daily disbelief at the commander in chief’s comments and actions. Most are working to insulate their operations from his whims.”

It was the biggest White House leak since Watergate, pretty much. And its significance was underlined by the reaction of no less than the Mango Mussolini himself. On his cherished Twitter, Donald Trump screeched: “Does the so-called “Senior Administration Official” really exist, or is it just the Failing New York Times with another phony source? If the GUTLESS anonymous person does indeed exist, the Times must, for National Security purposes, turn him/her over to government at once!”

There was time when it would be news for a President of the United States to invoke “National Security” to justify “turning in” an American citizen who had exercised their First Amendment free speech rights. We are in those times no longer. President Pisstape has violated so many political conventions – he has moved so far from the most basic societal and legal norms – no one is surprised anymore.

But the White House resistance leak? That should surprise us all.

Not because a senior official is the source: senior officials leak all the time (some would say that’s all they do, along with planning their next junket). Not because it was on front page of the august New York Times (leaks have made their way onto that coveted piece of news real estate before). And not because the leak contained salacious, get-even stuff (that’s what leaks are, most of the time: the bleatings and screechings of someone who lost a political fight). Not because of any of that.

No, the I AM PART OF THE RESISTANCE INSIDE THE TRUMP ADMINISTRATION story was shocking for this reason: it details a high-level mutiny against a sitting President of the United States. It describes what can only be fairly regarded as a constitutional crisis, one that will shake the world’s most powerful democracy to its foundations.

As a leak of Bob Woodward’s book Fear detailed the day before the resister’s tale was told, senior officials are now actively and regularly bypassing and overruling the decisions of the President. They are even snatching documents off the top of his desk in the Oval Office, so he doesn’t see them.

The ramifications of the New York Times’ bombshell will be felt beyond the United States. With the mid-terms just weeks away, with the Democrats maintaining a double-digit lead over Republicans, and with the Trump Administration falling apart at the seams, the resisrtance story will oblige Donald Trump to mostly give Canada what it wants in the byzantine NAFTA negotiations.

Ten days ago, Donald Trump was promising to exclude Canada from a trade deal, and mocking us. Ten days later – and after the revelation in Woodward’s book, and the Times’ account of the resister’s palace coup – Trump cannot afford to lose the few Republican allies he has left in Congress. The moment that leak was published, Canada’s trade ambitions were rescued.

There’s leaks, and there’s leaks like the one the Times had. And it’s a leak that has helped Canada, big time.


“Crickets:” Huge news for Toronto and the city-province relationship, across Canada

From the actual judgement from Justice Belobaba.  Read to the last line.  That’s something I’ve never seen before:


Hill Times writes about Tire-gate

Right here.

Kinsella nearly gets involuntarily, er, re-tired


Hill Times columnist Warren Kinsella looks forward to retirement, he says. But not that kind.

Last weekend, Mr. Kinsella was returning to his Toronto home from London, where he had helped one of his sons settle in at Western University. The author and former special assistant to Jean Chrétien was in the fast lane on Highway 401 when disaster struck.

“I first heard this unsettling woosh sound, kind of like the sound Andrew Scheer made when Max Bernier announced the formation of a second conservative party,”said Mr. Kinsella. “And then there was rapid and dra- matic depressurization, not unlike Jagmeet Singh’s hopes to be prime minister.”

He wrestled his new Jeep to the side of the highway, avoiding any other motorists and — perhaps regrettably from the perspective of his many critics in the Prime Minister’s Office — somehow survived.

“I called for roadside assistance, but they never came. Kind of like what happens when you call the federal government for help,” Mr. Kinsella said. “So I changed the damn tire myself, with my bare hands. I’m from Calgary, after all.” 

The brand new Goodyear all-season tire wasn’t flat — it had completely blown out, resembling a big black rubber band wrapped around Mr. Kinsella’s axle.  It was only later he realized how serious it had been.

“I could have bought the farm,” Mr. Kinsella said. “I apologize to my detractors for not having done so.”

His blow-out attracted some media attention. Global TV’s Sean O’Shea filed a report on the incident. Corus’ Charles Adler had also reported on the incident. The Hill Times, too, has now reported on Mr. Kinsella’s tire blowout, and will stop doing so right about now.