This year marks the 30th anniversary of the Salman Rushdie Affair. After the publication of his 1988 novel The Satanic Verses, many Muslims accused Rushdie of blasphemy and the next year Iran’s Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini issued a fatwa ordering his death. Among Rushdie’s most vocal defenders was Christopher Hitchens, whose full-throated defense of free speech reminded us of what is at stake. After Hitchens’ untimely death in 2011, Mark Milke penned this tribute to Hitchens and why he mattered.
With opinions polls indicating that on many policy issues Quebecers have conservative stances, the best way to explain the election of 59 MPs for the NDP is to consider how confused voters are because of the politically correct discourse that has dominated the history of province.
The Quebec conservative scene has been shaken-up by the emergence of a new political movement — and now official political party — called the Coalition pour l’avenir du Québec (CAQ). Paul Beaudry argues that despite media spin, the coalition is not to be considered “conservative” in any sense of the word, and that the right-of-centre Action démocratique du Québec (ADQ) should rebuff attempts at a merger.
Support for free trade has tended to be high in Quebec: federalists supported it for economic reasons and sovereignists because it would allow the province to be less economically dependent on the rest of Canada. Will this change with the rise of the NDP? Bradley Doucet and Jasmin Guénette believe it could…
Is Quebec’s province-wide embrace of the NDP just more evidence that the two solitudes are as alienated from each as ever, or merely a fluke? Brendan Steven worries that language issues and the Quebec vs. the Rest of Canada divide will play a more prominent role in the next few years of Canadian politics.
A recent paper revealed that employees with selfish, deceitful, and aggressive personality traits were no more likely to succeed than those who were generous, trustworthy, and generally nice. But does this apply to politics? Grant Morgan reviews Elusive Destiny, about former Liberal leader (and, very briefly, Prime Minister) John Turner. Hint: Turner was generally thought of as a nice guy.