Tuesday, Sept. 1, 2015
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A VIEW FROM WASHINGTON, D. C.
Canada gets 'pass' on free speech in U.S. human rights report

Although the HRR no longer grades countries even with opaque language, analysts can easily intuit Canadians are among the world’s fortunate, writes David Jones.


  
Iran nuclear agreement in its current iteration akin to a half-completed skyscraper

It destroys nothing. Most of the centrifuges designed to enrich uranium at best are put into storage. There is no published agreement on the future of the overwhelming bulk of the already enriched uranium (10,000 kilograms supposedly to be reduced to 300 kilograms).   


  
Prime minister Jim Prentice, anyone?

Someday the Harper incumbency will end, either from electoral defeat or well-earner retirement. The Tories will seek new leadership and Jim Prentice has all the credentials.


  
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.


  
Parliamentary Calendar
Tuesday, September 1, 2015
HILL LIFE & PEOPLE SLIDESHOWS
MPs, federal candidates take part in Ottawa's Capital Pride Parade, Aug. 23 Aug. 24, 2015

The Hill Times photograph by Rachel Aiello

On Sunday, Aug. 23 Ottawa celebrated its 30th annual pride march through downtown. All four main political parties had a contingent in the parade, with the Liberals first in the line of marchers. Here Orleans candidate Andrew Leslie and a slightly hidden Ottawa South MP David McGuinty walk together, alongside dozens of supporters. 

The Hill Times photograph by Rachel Aiello

Ottawa Centre Liberal candidate Catherine McKenna. 

The Hill Times photograph by Rachel Aiello

More Liberal supporters march in the parade. Liberal MPP for Ottawa Centre Yasir Naqvi, Ottawa-West Nepean candidate Anita Vandenbeld, Kanata-Carleton candidate Karen McCrimmon, and Hull-Alymer candidate Greg Fergus were marching too. 

The Hill Times photograph by Rachel Aiello

The local Green party contingent in the parade threw their support around Kanata-Carleton candidate Andrew West. 

The Hill Times photograph by Rachel Aiello

The New Democrats making their way onto the parade route, flanked by local unions UFCW Locals 175 & 633, and the Public Service Alliance of Canada (PSAC). 

The Hill Times photograph by Rachel Aiello

NDP candidate for Orleans Nancy Tremblay was all smiles next to Ottawa Centre MP Paul Dewar. 

The Hill Times photograph by Rachel Aiello

Paul Dewar and the NDP supporters were yelling "Happy Pride" as they marched. Carleton candidate kc Larocque, Kanata-Carleton candidate John Hansen, Ottawa South candidate George Brown, and Nepean candidate Sean Devine were there, too. 

The Hill Times photograph by Rachel Aiello

Despite a petition looking to ban the LGBTory contingent from marching in the parade, about two-dozen supporters took part, holding signs that included "I kissed a Tory and I liked it," and "I am Conservative, I support trans rights." The latter was inspired by backlash over Bill C-279,  the trans bill of rights that was killed by Conservative Senators during the last session of Parliament. 

The Hill Times photograph by Rachel Aiello

Nepean Carleton MPP Lisa MacLeod, and Ottawa Centre federal candidate Damian Konstantinakos (far right) were the only politicians The Hill Times spotted among the LGBTory contingent.

Ontario Conservative MPP Lisa MacLeod. She also marched earlier this summer in the Toronto Pride Parade alongside Ontario PC leader Patrick Brown. 

The Hill Times photograph by Rachel Aiello

The LGBTorys were joined by Melissa Hudson, the chair of Trans-Action Group, a non-profit focused on Transgender health and employment. As well, some marchers carried signs, seen above, that list the 18 federal MPs past and present who "stand with" the LGBTorys. 

The Hill Times photograph by Rachel Aiello

The LGBTory contingent calls themselves the 'Rainbow Conservatives of Canada" according to a handout they had at their tent set up as part of the street fair alongside the parade. All parties had sign-up lists at their booths, looking to gain supporters and volunteers. On the handout, it says they want to "break the left wing monopoly on the LGBT community," and includes quotes from former Foreign Affairs minister John Baird, and former VP of the Ottawa Centre Conservative Association Fred Litwin

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