The C2C Ideas Archive

Where Merit Still Reigns

Closing the gender gap, breaking the glass ceiling and achieving pay equity are well-worn buzzwords denoting social engineering obsessions across many fields. They often fall short, however, without the imposition of hiring quotas. The RCMP finds itself facing this dilemma. While decades of coaxing have brought several thousand females into its ranks, Josh Dehaas’s research reveals the gentle approach has stopped moving the needle. For now at least, the RCMP and its female Commissioner are sticking stoutly to merit in hiring.

Finding Our Best and Brightest

The Daughters of the Vote’s most recent get-together in Ottawa in April descended into a toxic mix of identity politics, name-calling and virtue-signalling. Although we are mistaken to see women as the redeeming angels of popular myth, writes Tasha Kheiriddin, we still need their unique voice and political talent. Fortunately, Canada has a long tradition of capable female politicians to serve as models for our aspiring leaders of both sexes.

Choosing between Trudeau’s Election Propaganda and the Truth

With every serious but hardly unprecedented weather event getting blamed on human-driven climate change, including in histrionic government press releases, some suspect the federal Liberals are laying the groundwork for a viciously moralistic election campaign. Gwyn Morgan is one, but he still sees a practical way out of the mess for Canadians and, perhaps, for the federal opposition as well.

Atheism, Scientism And The Lingering Of The Numinous

Disasters – natural or otherwise – have a way of bringing out extremes in human behaviour and emotions. And so it was with the Easter Week fire at Cathédrale Notre-Dame in Paris: from the Catholic priest who risked his life to save irreplaceable relics and artwork, to French businessmen pledging grandiose sums for rebuilding, to the almost psychotic architecture some proposed for the restoration. For Patrick Keeney, the near-catastrophe triggered deep reflection on our era’s tense relationship between science and spirituality.

Think Globally, Act Profitably

Raising Canada’s carbon emissions could be a good thing – if it drove far bigger cuts to emissions elsewhere in the world. Rather than fixating on forcing domestic emissions reductions and thereby beggaring Canadian industries, Michael Binnion wants Canadian climate change policy to look at the big picture. Doing so, he explains, could not only generate jobs and wealth at home but maximize the worldwide environmental benefits.

Does Cortés’ Conquest of Mexico Require an Apology, Or a Thank-You?

Official regret – often delivered with a perfectly moistened eye and quavering voice – has been expressed by our prime minister for a seemingly endless parade of old injustices. Native schoolchildren, gays and lesbians, Sikh immigrants, Jewish refugees, six British Columbia chiefs hanged following the Chilcotin War and Inuit populations suffering from tuberculosis have all received a mea culpa from Ottawa. But does such federal self-abasement correspond to what actually happened? Peter Shawn Taylor casts a gimlet eye at Mexico’s efforts to blame 16th century Spain for present-day complaints and finds that the truth sometimes comes down on the side of colonialism.

Surviving Childhood Eco-Brainwashing

Earth Day triggered the usual round of apocalyptic warnings and crazed publicity stunts, this time accompanied by the sad sight of schoolchildren warning adults that the world is doomed and today’s kids are destined for an early death. The facts, however, speak powerfully in the opposite direction, writes Josh Dehaas. He too endured eco-brainwashing as a schoolkid but eventually grew out of it, living proof the affliction is survivable.

Missing the plot in Alberta’s election: What the media party missed

Mark Milke had a ringside seat in the Alberta election as the lead architect of the United Conservative Party platform. What he saw was a startling disconnect between media coverage and the issues that mattered most to Albertans. The economic focus of UCP policy earned the party a million votes and a huge majority. Through bias, ignorance, or both, the media often missed the story.

Conservative Optimism is Not an Oxymoron

During his decades of involvement in Canada’s conservative movement, Gerry Nicholls has seen the right lose cultural influence and suffer more electoral losses than wins. Yet even as leftist smear-and-fear campaigns reach new heights of slander, Nicholls is heartened by this month’s big victory for the united right in Alberta, and hopeful for a larger conservative political and cultural renaissance in Canada and beyond.

Canada’s Moral Obligation to the World

As billions of people in developing countries demand more of everything, especially cheap energy, Canada can help meet the need and improve the global environment by exporting liquefied natural gas. So why are some Canadians trying to thwart the idea, insisting we fight climate change all by ourselves? Not only would this further hobble our economy but, Steve Larke and Adam LeDain contend, exporting LNG represents the much stronger environmental and moral case.

The Canaries in the Coal Mine

In the early hours of November 10, 1938, Nazis attacked Jewish people and their property throughout Germany. “Kristallnacht” was a direct prelude to the Holocaust. Barbara Kay reminds us that how a nation treats its Jewish minority is a signal of the wellbeing of the broader polity, and warns against what she calls the “third wave of anti-Semitism.”

My Platonic Conversion

Like many young people, Johnathan Strathdee got his progressive ideals from the public education system. In high school he learned that capitalism is unfair, oppression is endemic, and environmental catastrophe is imminent. Then he read Plato and learned that the world is not so simple.

Adam Smith Meets Big Bear

Tom Flanagan’s new book The Wealth of First Nations comes at a time when more and more Indigenous leaders and communities are embracing the market economy, resource development, and entrepreneurship. Across every social and economic metric, the Makers are outperforming the Takers, which points the way to less dependence, more integration, and even, perhaps, true reconciliation.

Wrecking the Federation to Save the Planet

The federal carbon tax came into effect this week in Ontario, Manitoba, New Brunswick and Saskatchewan. It may soon be imposed in Alberta, depending on the outcome of this month’s election. Starting with Saskatchewan, the provinces are taking Ottawa to court over who has the right to regulate greenhouse gases under Canada’s constitution. The much larger question is how the case will affect the balance of powers within the federation.

The Trump Era So Far

The Mueller report icing the Russian collusion charges did not end Trump Derangement Syndrome. You can still trigger an argument just by wearing a red baseball cap with a certain caption on it. But a new book about the Trump era so far, by American conservative scholar Victor Davis Hanson, is mercifully TDS-free. Hanson’s bias in The Case for Trump is that whatever the failings of the disruptor, the Deep State needed disrupting. As the SNC scandal lifts the veil on Canada’s own Deep State, Barry Cooper wonders if it will be the harbinger of our own disruptor.

Killing the ‘Tar Sands’ with American Money and Canadian Saboteurs

Slowly Canadians are awakening to the fact that their country’s oil and gas industry, an essential part of the national economy, has been targeted for destruction by an alliance of American money and Canadian eco-activists. Together they have blocked pipelines, swung elections, and installed their agents in positions of power, including the office of the prime minister. B.C. researcher Vivian Krause, who exposed this decade-long campaign and the tens of millions of U.S. dollars that financed it, deserves to be recognized as a “true Canadian patriot.”

The New Hatemongers

For those who seek to divide and conquer Western culture, the ends always justify the means. Hence the rise of “hate crime hoaxes,” exaggerated or invented incidents of racism. Recent fake villains include the Covington high school kids in the U.S., and, here in Canada, a Fort McMurray minor hockey team. There are fake victims too, notably actor Jussie Smollett in his worst performance yet. Making up stories to ignite race war takes a special kind of evil. Believing those stories, as so many in the media and positions of authority are wont to do, abets it.

1979 Starring Joe Clark as Jimmy Stewart

2019 marks the 40th anniversary of the election of Prime Minister Joe Clark. “Joe Who?” millions will ask. Don’t worry. That’s what he was called in 1979 too. There is a modest effort underway to try burnish his legacy by Central Canada’s few remaining Red Tories. It includes a play which portrays Clark as more honest than Brian Mulroney, much nicer than Stephen Harper, and less vulgar than Pierre Trudeau. 1979 had a Clark-like run – i.e. short – on a Toronto stage in January. Neil Hrab attended and found the play marred by earnest overreach, rather like the man.

Who Pressured Whom?

Most of the media coverage of the SNC-Lavalin affair followed the same script: Jody Wilson-Raybould tried to uphold the rule of law and Justin Trudeau fired her for doing so. This story was one of very few to challenge the conventional wisdom about Wilson-Raybould’s motives and objectives. Judging from the traffic and feedback Brian Giesbrecht’s piece is getting, a lot of Canadians share the concern that the former Attorney-General had another agenda, and it put the advancement of Indigenous rights, claims and sovereignty ahead of the rule of law.

A Bigger Man on Campus

Dalhousie University interim president Peter MacKinnon is a rare bird – a blue-chip member of the Canadian academic establishment who is standing up for free expression against campus social justice bullies. The mob is trying to get him fired, writes Josh Dehaas, because of the politically incorrect opinions expressed in his new book University Commons Divided. But MacKinnon has the stature and courage needed to take them on and, perhaps, the ideas needed to restore true academic freedom on the nation’s university campuses.

Obstruct, Cover up, and Fearmonger

Jody Wilson-Raybould’s account of a PMO-PCO plan to spike the SNC-Lavalin criminal prosecution and cover it up with planted media op-eds is gobsmacking enough. But it’s the simultaneous fearmongering about fake news and political violence that escalates this way beyond a garden variety Liberal corruption scandal. After all, the Trudeau government is also planning to invest $600 million in pliant media and promising to filter election news coverage. Tony Soprano, meet Joe Stalin. Grant Brown reports.

Canada’s Pension Plan? Make the Kids Pay

CPP premiums keep increasing to pay for the rising tide of retirees, a growing army of bureaucrats managing an increasingly politicized investment portfolio, and lately an ad campaign celebrating the mandatory national pyramid scheme. Matthew Lau has some better ideas for your retirement security, mainly from the privatized pension plan pioneered by the former dictatorship in Chile, which proves that no form of government can do everything wrong all of the time.

Homage to the Booksellers of Yangon

A tour of Southeast Asia brought Patrick Keeney to the city of Yangon in Myanmar and its clutch of used bookstores on Pansodan Street. He writes of the joy of his literary discoveries there, in language echoing Orwell’s beautiful prose in Burmese Days.

But for a ‘Basic Dictatorship’

When Justin Trudeau pined for autocracy in 2013 he was thinking of China and climate change. He has a far more pressing reason to wish for it today, writes Paul Stanway, as the pesky rule of law keeps interfering with his government’s best-laid plans in the SNC-Lavalin affair. The distinctly unhelpful election-year allegation is that first they bent the rule to spare the Montreal firm prosecution for corruption; when that failed they tried to break it. But former Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould got in the way, and another Quebec Liberal scandale was born.

A Plan for a Catastrophe That Never Comes

Seems like everyone has a plan to save the planet from Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming. Naomi Klein has her Leap Manifesto and Alexandria Octavio-Cortez a Green New Deal. Justin Trudeau has a carbon tax – sorry, “price on pollution” – and Andrew Scheer has his, er, whatever. Unfortunately, all of them are economically catastrophic. Grant Brown is a climate change skeptic and borderline heretic, but nevertheless as a public service he has developed an affordable Climate Change Survival Guide.

The Enemy of Free Speech Is Us

Canadians are polite to a fault, and it may be our undoing as a free people. Where we once allowed free expression to be suppressed in the name of traditional morals, we now allow it to be trampled in the name of victims. Government, academic and media complicity in this suppression is rampant, warns Fergus Hodgson, in a stirring call to impoliteness. Government, academic and media complicity in this suppression is rampant, warns Fergus Hodgson, in a stirring call to impoliteness. But pushback against free speech suppression is migrating from the fringe to mainstream, and the market for free speech is creating new channels to give it voice.

The Terrors Of Dr.Suzuki

For decades professional catastrophist David Suzuki has called humans “maggots” and a “cancer” on the Earth. His misanthropy is celebrated and taught in schools. His favourite mangled metaphor casts humans as bacteria. But the doctor of doom ought to know that we are more complex and creative organisms than microbes. The arc of human progress – for all its fits and starts – proves his “science” is hogwash, write Pierre Desrochers and Joanna Szurmak, as it was with all the Malthusians before him.

Punching Below Our Weight

Wonder why China and Saudi Arabia are publicly berating Canada with seeming impunity these days? Well, who respects a country that is so blatantly unserious about defending itself, especially in a world where tensions are clearly rising among the major powers and their allies? As Ottawa prepares to take possession of some worn-out Australian F-18 fighters bought on the cheap, Mathew Preston undertakes a detailed comparison of Aussie and Canuck military capabilities and defence policy and comes up with mortifying answers to these questions.

Let Them Smoke Dope

A Canadian Press poll of the national media ranked the legalization of cannabis as Canada’s top business story of 2018. Pipeline paralysis and the crisis in the energy sector ranked a distant third. Hello? The birth of a $6 billion-per-year industry is more important than the death of one generating $117 billion annually? This is the worst misread of an economy since Marie Antoinette and, as Gwyn Morgan writes, it portends more bad news for Canada in 2019.

Stephen Harper’s Other Book: The Politics of Hockey

Stephen Harper’s new book about the populist uprising against globalization provides pithy insights into contemporary politics. But his lesser-known 2013 work about the early days of professional hockey reveals more about the author and his place in politics. Just as the Central Canadian elites once conspired to keep working-class players out of hockey, so they tried to keep Harper out of power, and failed on both counts. James Coggins detects a hint of gleeful revenge in the hockey-as-social-history writing of Canada’s 22nd prime minister.

Mob Rule on Pipelines and Grizzly Hunting

There was a time in “the true North strong and free” you could follow your dreams as long as you didn’t hurt other people. Then came “social licence” and suddenly, from energy pipelines to the B.C. grizzly bear hunt, things got banned for being unpopular, a.k.a. “socially unacceptable”. That ominous change sets Canada on the well-worn path to the tyranny of the majority, writes John Robson.

Power and Politics and Pedagogy

Max Bernier was reproached and ridiculed on CBC’s Power and Politics program because a candidate running in the Burnaby byelection for his “fringe” People’s Party of Canada opposes teaching the novel concept of “gender fluidity” to schoolchildren. The host and her kangaroo court of mainstream party partisans found the candidate guilty of “homophobia and discrimination”, and fingered Bernier as an accessory to the thought crime because he refused to condemn it. But honestly, writes Grant Brown, nothing could be more fringe than believing that human gender and sexual orientation are as changeable as the weather.

A Plea to End Canadian Apartheid

Only a small number of Canadian authors and thinkers publicly question the racial segregation underpinning Aboriginal law and policy. The latest to do so is northern Ontario lawyer Peter Best, in a passionate and wide-ranging book entitled There Is No Difference. In an age when the human equality lessons of Mandela, King, Lincoln and Gandhi have been turned upside-down by identity politics, Best warns that Canadian apartheid is plunging the country ever-deeper into racial division and economic paralysis. Despite its flaws, writes Brian Giesbrecht, Best has produced an important and hopeful work.

The Fake World Wildlife Wipeout

The CBC story on the World Wildlife Fund’s 2018 Living Planet Report read like a casualty count after a global thermonuclear war. “60 percent of the world’s wildlife has been wiped out since 1970,” shrilled the CBC. Mathew Preston went looking for the corpses and instead discovered selective, exaggerated and misleading propaganda about the health of flora and fauna. Habitat destruction and species decline are serious problems in many parts of the world, but it’s far from the Armageddon painted by the WWF and CBC, and in developed, democratic, free-market countries like Canada, most species are doing just fine.

America’s Fall from ‘Morning Again’ to ‘Great Again’

Ronald Reagan never wavered in his conviction that America was a great country that would prevail over enemies of democracy and freedom. His fundamental optimism and determination carried his nation to victory over the Soviet “evil empire” and his personal rags-to-riches experience breathed new life into the venerable American dream of limited government, personal liberty, and individual self-reliance. Sadly, Reagan’s current successor governs on the premise that America is no longer great, and he has no discernible, consistent convictions about anything. Mark Milke laments the loss of U.S. self-confidence, and leadership, in a review of a new book about the “Great Communicator”.

The Teepee of Babel

Ottawa’s promise to rescue many dozens of dying Indigenous languages and effectively give them equivalent status with English and French has billion-dollar boondoggle written all over it. Peter Shawn Taylor makes a powerful case for letting lost tongues die a natural death.

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