Saturday, Dec. 20, 2014
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A VIEW FROM WASHINGTON, D. C.
Be careful what you ask for

A future PQ government could submit a list of prominent separatist lawyers for the Quebec-designate position. Although there are no (identified) separatists in the senior Quebec courts, all that is technically required is membership in the Quebec bar.


  
The Prime Minister and the Supreme Court

Prime Minister Stephen Harper has resolved his Senate issue (it cannot be done) and lays the groundwork for a new Supreme Court nomination.


  
U.S. State Department’s annual human rights reports Canada again golden

Although the Annual Country Reports on Human Rights Practices no longer grades individual countries even with opaque language, analysts can easily intuit the Canadians are among the world’s fortunate, able to elect leadership freely, speak, write, assemble, and worship in peace under essentially honest government.


  
Reducing inequality good for economic growth

And tax-and-spending policies can do a great deal to improve life chances for the many Canadians who are not doing well economically.


  
Don’t bet on a non-nuclear Iran

Reaching full agreement at the six-month mark is problematic.


  
What are we remembering?

But for all of the iconic nature of Veterans Day, Americans appear to have stepped back from previous wearing of poppies. In the Washington area, there is nary one to be seen. Last year, I got mine at the Canadian Embassy—a red one.


  
Grow up, Canadians

One is always amazed, as an observer from the southland, at what will start Canadian dovecots squawking.


  
U.S. State Department's international human rights report: reviewing 2012 globally and in Canada

While Canadian restrictions on free speech continue to be noted and national and provincial human rights commissions powers are identified, there is no comment on the chilling effect that ‘hate speech’ charges can entail.


  
Drones, the new poster child for the left

And for the professional pontificators, they are a godsend.


  
Forgetting history

There are fewer and fewer for whom Pearl Harbor is the relevant benchmark of their lives. Their ‘who-I-am-is-where-I-was-when’ touchstones are the Kennedy assassination, the Space Shuttle explosion, and—of course—9/11.


  
Soviet-U.S. Intermediate Range Nuclear Forces Treaty signed in 1987 provides lessons worth remembering

It was an unprecedented agreement as for the first time, it eliminated completely an entire class of weapons.


  
On the rail: Amtrak and America

We joined an ‘Adopt a Highway’ cleanup effort on the main highway into Vail. Illustrative of De Tochville’s American volunteer spirit, we dressed in protective clothing, gloved, with bright orange vests and ‘grippers’ for picking up.


  
Total war a lesson in hypocrisy

We all suffer from hypocrisy. Nations are no less culpable than individuals. It is hard to find a nation where the existing government regards itself as acting from other than principled virtue.


  
Just what are we doing in Asia?

  
Canadian human rights: 2011 in review

Although we no longer ‘grade’ human rights action, Canada qualifies for the equivalent of an ‘A.’


  
America declines ‘Americans Elect’

The current U.S. political deadlock is existential; it is not a question of making quick fixes with marginal manoeuvres.


  
Obsessing over the Iranian nuclear program

What to do about Tehran and how or when to do it? This is definitely a conundrum for which the answers are even more illusive than attempting to lever Syria’s Bashar out of power.


  
Harper and Asia: breaking more ground

Harper plays his ‘China card.’ This was a useful reminder to Washington that Ottawa has other market options.


  
Third thoughts about Syria

And to be sure Bashar is no choirboy. Syria is a nasty dictatorship with a decades-long record of vicious human rights violations. But neither are his opponents choirboys.


  
On becoming grandparents and eligibility for old age pensions

So as Canadians absorb and review the first public information on their 2011 census, some may want to stop and think of the microcosmic elements of reality behind the 5.9 per cent growth.


  

Parliamentary Calendar
Sunday, December 21, 2014
HILL LIFE & PEOPLE SLIDESHOWS
2014 in photos Dec. 19, 2014

Mark Burgess
Justice Minister Peter MacKay, NDP MP Mathieu Ravignat, and Patrick Brown at the Canadian Tire Canal Classic, a charity shinny game between parliamentarians and the press on the Rideau Canal in January. The MPs prevailed.
The Hill Times photo by Jake Wright
Labour Minister Kellie Leitch, Chris Frogatt of National Public Relations and Blue Sky’s Sandra Buckler at the Manning Centre party in February.
The Hill Times photo by Jake Wright
NDP MP Peter Stoffer in his Parliament Hill office in February.
The Hill Times photo by Jake Wright
Democratic Reform Minister Pierre Poilievre prepares to testify before the Procedure and House Affairs Committee in February.
The Hill Times photo by Jake Wright
Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau speaks at the party’s policy convention in Montreal in February.
The Hill Times photo by Jake Wright
Liberal MP Rodger Cuzner and Conservative MP James Rajotte at the Fuelling the dream Canadian Olympic team luncheon on the Hill in February.
The Hill Times photo by Jake Wright
Speaker of the House of Commons Andrew Scheer showing off his stickhandling skills at the February Fuelling the dream Canadian Olympic team luncheon on the Hill.
The Hill Times photo by Jake Wright
Liberal MP Wayne Easter and Conservative MP John Duncan at the Fuelling the dream Canadian Olympic team luncheon on the Hill in February.
The Hill Times photo by Jake Wright
Minister of Sport Bal Gosal at a Nature Canada event on the Hill on Feb. 3 alongside an owl.
The Hill Times photo by Jake Wright
The late Jim Flaherty pictured on Feb. 11 2014, the day he delivered his last federal budget.
The Hill Times photo by Jake Wright
The post-budget day party at Hy’s Steakhouse.
The Hill Times photo by Jake Wright
Prime Minister Stephen Harper heading out to greet Shi Ismaili Muslim spiritual leader Aga Khan on Feb. 27.
The Hill Times photo by Jake Wright
Laureen Harper, the Governor General’s wife Sharon Johnston, and Prime Minister Stephen Harper pictured Canadian as soldiers came home from Afghanistan on March 18, 2014. Also pictured, Defence Minister Rob Nicholson, and Chief of Defence Staff General Tom Lawson.
The Hill Times photo by Jake Wright
NDP MP Andrew Cash and Canadian songstress Serena Ryder at the 2014 Canadian Screen Awards in March, in Toronto.
The Hill Times photo by Jake Wright
NDP MPs Pierre Nantel, Rathika Sitsabaiesan, Peggy Nash and Laurin Liu on the red carpet at the Canadian Screen Awards in March.
The Hill Times photo by Jake Wright
Heritage Minister Shelly Glover and Gabrielle star Alexandre Landry at the Canadian Screen Awards in March.
The Hill Times photo by Jake Wright
Actor Viggo Mortensen shows his true colours with Heritage Minister Shelly Glover at the Canadian Screen Awards in March.
The Hill Times photo by Jake Wright
Conservative MP Michael Chong, NDP Leader Tom Mulcair, Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau and Green Party Leader Elizabeth attend the launch of the iVote-jeVote campaign at the University of Ottawa in March to encourage young voters to engage in the political process.
The Hill Times photo by Jake Wright
Conservative MP Michael Chong and NDP Leader Tom Mulcair talk democratic engagement at the University of Ottawa in March.
The Hill Times photo by Jake Wright
Transport Minister Lisa Raitt and NDP MP Megan Leslie, pictured on April 2, 2014, at the Politics & the Pen gala, which raised $350,000 for the Writers Trust. The two hosted the evening, cracked a lot of jokes and sang Gloria Gaynor's song, I Will Survive.
The Hill Times photo by Jake Wright
Prime Minister Stephen Harper delivering remarks to his caucus upon hearing of Jim Flaherty’s passing on April 10, while an emotion Laureen Harper looks on.
The Hill Times photo by Jake Wright
Conservative MP Susan Truppe comforts Labour Minister Kellie Leitch upon hearing of Jim Flaherty’s passing on April 10.
The Hill Times photo by Jake Wright
Conservative MP John Weston comes up for air while swimming laps at the Chateau Laurier’s pool in May. Mr. Weston is one of “The Chief Fun and Fitness Officers,” a group of MPs that take part in physical activities together.
The Hill Times photo by Jake Wright
A pro-choice protestor holds a sign reading “my body, my choice” during the annual National March for Life demonstration on the Hill, on May 8.
The Hill Times photo by Jake Wright
Conservative MPs John Williamson and Rob Moore.
The Hill Times photo by Jake Wright
NDP MP Megan Leslie.
The Hill Times photo by Jake Wright
Another lawn summer night at the Elmdale Lawn Bowling Club.
The Hill Times photo by Steve Gerecke
First Nations protesters on Parliament Hill as part of the Peoples’ Social Forum gathering in Ottawa in August.
The Hill Times photo by Steve Gerecke
Peoples’ social forum in August.
The Hill Times photo by Jake Wright
The Government Relations Institute of Canada’s board members took on the Ice Bucket Challenge outside of the Chambers building on Aug. 29.
The Hill Times photo by Jake Wright
CBC TV's This Hour Has 22 Minutes comedian Mark Critch interviewing NDP MP Pierre Nantel, his party's culture critic at the September edition of Movie Night on the Hill, the Canadian premier of Elephant Song.
The Hill Times photo by Jake Wright
Postmedia’s Stephen Maher dressed in his cowboy best, with Camille Labchuk, for the Jaimie Anderson Fundraiser at the Black Sheep Inn, in Wakefield on Sept. 26.
The Hill Times photo by Mark Burgess
At 9:52 a.m. Oct. 22, the first calls come in of shots fired at the National War Memorial. People try to save Cpl. Nathan Cirilo’s life.
The Hill Times photo by Mark Burgess
Mid-afternoon on Oct. 22, police head down Metcalfe Street to secure buildings that had been on lockdown for fear of a gunman on the loose. Reports later confirmed the lone gunman had been killed inside Centre Block.
The Hill Times photo by Steve Gerecke
Lysane Blanchette-Lamothe, NDP MP, had come to the Hill on Oct. 22 with her baby and was breastfeeding in the lobby when the gunman entered. She hid in a phone booth until Hill security brought them to a safer place
The Hill Times photo by Jake Wright
Sergeant-at-Arms Kevin Vickers carries the mace during the first Speakers Parade into the House of Commons following the shooting, on Oct. 23.
The Hill Times photo by Jake Wright
Flowers at the National War Memorial to honour Cpl. Nathan Cirillo.
The Hill Times photo by Jake Wright
A soldier stands guard at the National War Memorial on Nov. 11.
The Hill Times photo by Jake Wright
The Remembrance Day ceremony at the National War Memorial.
The Hill Times photo by Jake Wright
Canadian rock icon Burton Cummings backstage with Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau and his wife Sophie Gregoire at the Hope Live gala at the Great Canadian Theatre Company on Oct. 27.
The Hill Times photo by Jake Wright
Competing culinary team from the Lowertown Brewery at the 10th annual Gold Medal Plates on Nov. 17 at the Shaw Centre.

MICHAEL DE ADDER'S TAKE