George Marsland, RIP

More terrible news. This is just an awful, awful week. RIP, George.

Update: Toronto Division April 29th 13 found George and brought him to hospital where he later passed away. He was found at a park at 335 St. Clair West on a path leading to the ravine. There was no sign of a dog. An autopsy is being performed. No additional information. Please pass this information on to whoever knew and loved George. I will continue updating this site as more details come in

“Played no roll in this transaction.”

Last night, the Mango Mussolini’s own lawyer did him in.

Appearing on Fox, Rudy Giuliani said Trump was the one who paid a porn star hush money, not his attorney – as he’d previously claimed.  In so doing, Rudy tossed his client under the Campaign Finance Laws bus, big time.  A panicked Trump thereafter went on a Twitter-Tourette-like Tweetstorm.



He is now officially up Shit Creek without a paddle. And – amazingly – it increasingly looks like he will be taken out not by a former G-man named Robert Mueller, but by a porn star named Stormy Daniels.

Best part: even when fighting for his life, he can’t remember how to spell “role.”


At Carleton, my closest political pals were James Villeneuve, Bob Richardson, Jim Watson and Gordie Brown.  I haven’t stayed in touch with the other guys as much, over the years, but I always did with Gordie.  Despite our different political allegiances, despite living in different places, we always remained very close friends. He was loyal to me, and me to him.

I last saw him on November 30, when he came to my Recipe for Hate book launch in Ottawa.  He was the only Ottawa friend who remembered and who came.  That was the kind of guy he was.

A few days ago, Gordie called me, after visiting James in L.A. I didn’t call him back.  I kept putting it off.  I was busy.

This morning, Gordie died of a massive heart attack.

I am in shock and don’t know what to say, other than just two things. One, I loved him as a friend and will miss him as a brother.

Two, when you reach a certain age, and your friends call, call them back.

University of Calgary’s comms for lawyers course being noticed worldwide!

Kind of cool – the Aussies have noticed what we are doing at U of C!  Maybe it’s time for me and Lisa to move Down Under?

Media course should be taught to Australian law students

A new university course that teaches Canadian law students how to better interact with the media should be introduced in Australia, according to a leading crisis communications practitioner.

The subject, ‘Crisis Communications for Lawyers’, is an initiative of the University of Calgary to better educate law students to understand the connection between the law and public relations.

Managing Director of Mercer PR, Lyall Mercer says it’s long overdue in Australia because there are still far too many lawyers who provide advice that ignores the changing media world, and this advice often adversely affects their clients.

“During a crisis a company or organisation usually engages with two key outside consultants, being lawyers and public relations companies,” he explained.

“The ideal situation is for both to be working together to assist their mutual client to achieve the best possible outcome from both legal and reputational perspectives.


Statement by Lisa Kinsella

It’s May 1 – the first day you can register as a candidate in Toronto’s upcoming municipal election.

I am a strong proponent of urging women to run for office. We women – and particularly women of colour – are gravely underrepresented in politics. Municipally, just 14 of 45 seats are held by women. In a city our size, with such a diverse community, where women represent half the population, it is just not good enough that we fill only 31 per cent of the seats.

I have been seriously considering running in this election – and I’m grateful for all the support and encouragement I’ve received from neighbours, friends, family and even strangers. I’m grateful to all of those who have offered to work on my campaign, and offered to donate money and time, too. But it’s a hard decision to make. Women often have more considerations to weigh – myself included.

I am a new grandmother and I want to be there for the baby, watching him grow and taking his first steps. I have begun studying for my MBA. I am a business partner in a consulting firm, which frequently takes me away to Ottawa to advocate for clients, like the many First Nations communities we proudly represent. And I am active locally in efforts to shut down a racist, anti-Semitic and misogynist tabloid that is distributed throughout Toronto – it’s this kind of hate that has no place in this beautiful, strong and resilient city.

Ultimately, my decision came down to whether I can be a more effective advocate as a private citizen or as a city councillor. And I believe that the answer is – for now – the former rather than the latter. One day I’m sure I will run; for what level of government, I don’t know yet. But, right now, is not my time.

I hope that my family in Ward 32 is well-served by a strong, capable woman. I hope women all across Toronto step up and run. This is how we change the culture of politics.

While this time it won’t be me, I will be sure to support women in this upcoming campaign.  And I hope you will, too.

Lisa Kinsella

One woman every other day

That’s how many women and girls are killed in Canada so far this year.  The Yonge Street massacre drove that grim number up even higher.

Fifty-seven women have been killed in Canada so far this year − a death toll that spiked by more than 15 per cent in a single day last week after eight women (and two men) died in a van attack in Toronto.

“That’s one woman or girl every other day in Canada that’s being killed,” said Myrna Dawson, a professor at the University of Guelph and head of the Centre for the Study of Social and Legal Responses to Violence.

The data came in a report published on Tuesday by the Canadian Femicide Observatory for Justice and Accountability (CFOJA), which was launched by the centre in December with the goal of cultivating a more nuanced understanding of why women are killed and how these deaths can be prevented.

As Lisa noted on the Kinsellacast last Friday, the killing of women, because they are women, is a hate crime.  (And, as you know, it was Lisa who successfully pushed police to lay charges against the editor and publisher of a neo-Nazi “newspaper” for wilfully promoting hate against an identifiable group – women.

This chart shows the horrible reality:

The final days are closer, now

It’s happening. It’s happening.

WASHINGTON — Robert S. Mueller III, the special counsel investigating Russia’s election interference, has at least four dozen questions on an exhaustive array of subjects he wants to ask President Trump to learn more about his ties to Russia and determine whether he obstructed the inquiry itself, according to a list of the questions obtained by The New York Times.

[Read the questions here.]

The open-ended queries appear to be an attempt to penetrate the president’s thinking, to get at the motivation behind some of his most combative Twitter posts and to examine his relationships with his family and his closest advisers. They deal chiefly with the president’s high-profile firings of the F.B.I. director and his first national security adviser, his treatment of Attorney General Jeff Sessions and a 2016 Trump Tower meeting between campaign officials and Russians offering dirt on Hillary Clinton.

But they also touch on the president’s businesses; any discussions with his longtime personal lawyer, Michael D. Cohen, about a Moscow real estate deal; whether the president knew of any attempt by Mr. Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, to set up a back channel to Russia during the transition; any contacts he had with Roger J. Stone Jr., a longtime adviser who claimed to have inside information about Democratic email hackings; and what happened during Mr. Trump’s 2013 trip to Moscow for the Miss Universe pageant.

Column: men who hate women aren’t men

It is a Monday, April 23, and it is beautiful.  Clear, warm.  A big blue sky.

Exiting a Traveler’s Canada panel on distracted driving at the Economic Club, I stepped onto Yonge Street and ran into Mark Warner, one of Canada’s best trade lawyers.  We talked about how Chrystia Freeland and team were doing with NAFTA (exceptionally well), and how Kathleen Wynne and team were doing with avoiding a third-place finish (exceptionally badly).  I then went down into Toronto’s subway system, heading North, towards Sheppard.

We hadn’t gotten very far when a female announcer came on.  Everyone would have to get off before we got to the Sheppard-Finch area, she said.  Buses would take us where we needed to go.  “Police action,” she said, giving no other explanation.

On the subway, we all looked at each other.  Some of us had never heard an announcement like this before.  Switch trains, sure.  But get off the Yonge-University line altogether?  That was unusual.

What was happening a few minutes to the North, of course, is now known to the world.  A homicidal monster – a “man” who wasn’t a man, a “man” who apparently hated women because they wouldn’t have sex with him – had commandeered a rental van and used it to kill ten people, and maim many more on Yonge Street.

Most of those he killed, most of those he hurt, the police would later say, were women.

Twenty-nine years earlier: it is around four o’clock in the afternoon, on a bitterly-cold Wednesday. I am a lawyer at an Ottawa valley law firm, and volunteering for Jean Chretien, who is also working as a lawyer, at the firm next door.  We are preparing for Chretien’s announcement, in just over a month, that he is going to seek the Liberal Party leadership.  And then the news starts to trickle in.

A “man” with a rifle has started shooting up the Ecole Polytechnique in Montreal.  He has wounded dozens of people – and he has slaughtered 14 young women.  Because they are women.

Stunned, we listened to Michael Enright interview a student at the school, Genvieve Cauden, on CBC Radio.  What happened, Enright asks her.

“We all go on the floor and we go under the desks. After, he shot people. He shot girls. I just closed my ears and closed my eyes. I didn’t want to know what’s going on. I received a shot in my head,” and then she paused. “But it’s not bad. It’s OK.”

“It just grazed your head,” Enright says.

“Yeah, that’s it,” Cauden says.  “After, the guy killed himself.”

The guy in Toronto, who was apparently following the precisely same Satanic, women-hating manifesto, didn’t kill himself.  As the entire world saw, he wanted a Toronto cop to do that for him.  The cop – amazingly, bravely – refused, and arrested the alleged mass-murderer without firing a shot.

After his arrest, the usual bullshit happened.  Politicians offering “thoughts and prayers,” instead of actual policies and measures to prevent something like Ecole Polytechnique and Yonge Street from happening again. Online losers, sitting in their mom’s basement and calling it Muslim terrorism – when it was decidedly neither.  Media lavishing attention on the alleged killer, instead of his many victims.  The usual bullshit.

So, on Wednesday, seventy-two hours later, another Economic Club panel takes place.  It has been organized – full disclosure – by my Daisy Group firm, and is called “Standing Together: Highlighting the Voice of Women in Canada.”  The panel is moderated by my partner Lisa Kinsella, and includes radio host Supriya Dwivedi, Mississaugas of Scugog Island First Nation Chief and lawyer Kelly LaRocca, and Conservative MP Michelle Rempel.

The subject of the Monday massacre in Toronto – and the killer’s apparent desire to kill women – doesn’t take very long to come up.  All four of the women have something to say about what happened, but it is clear they are also still processing it.

A “man” – the alleged killer – was angry that women wouldn’t have sex with him.  So he declared that he was something called an “incel” – an involuntary celibate.  And, on an apparently-genuine Facebook post made just before the slaughter, he declared his intention: “The incel rebellion has already begun!”

All of the women sound, in turns, angry and upset and shocked.  They struggle, a bit, to describe it.  Michelle Rempel, the MP, says it best.

“I am so, so sick of this,” she says.  “Sick of it.”

We all are.