Tuesday, March 31, 2015
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PM Harper to ask Parliament to extend, expand Iraq war

Harper winning the PR war, but support for Iraq war is uneasy and provisional.

Nothing to fear but fear-mongers themselves

Prime Minister Stephen Harper, rather than uniting Canadians, is fuelling Islamophobia—aimed, ironically and explicitly, at Muslim women, whom he claims to be protecting from the excesses of their religion.

Are we in tinfoil hat territory, or justly concerned?

This is a government that doesn’t need more tools, or encouragement, to crush its many, many enemies— or is it paranoid to say so? In fact, if anyone is wearing tinfoil hats, it is Harper and his friends in the RCMP.

Extreme politics crushes all, and it’s getting worse

Prime Minister Stephen Harper kicked off the new Parliamentary session, for instance, by insisting the NDP doesn’t want to stand up to jihadists, that the opposition ‘thinks it’s a terrible thing that some of these jihadists got killed when they fired on the Canadian military.’

Mulcair, Trudeau need to stop being so afraid

If you add the number of Canadians who loathe Stephen Harper to those disappointed in, or exasperated by, the major opposition parties, you have a world of hurt.

BREAKING: Nothing new about ‘The News’

The truth is complicated, solving problems takes years, most people live peaceful and productive lives. But The News isn’t in the business of reporting the truth, just the facts. Deep down, we know that. No wonder all but the hopelessly addicted tune out.

Santa Harper’s candy cane economics

Canadians like ‘strong’ leadership in a troubled world, pollsters report. That means standing up to tyrants, autocrats, and bullies (except when on an important trade mission, of course.)

We don’t need more pipelines, we need more truth about oil

Parliament Hill is another world, with other rules: Susan Riley

Anti-harassment measures, covering all public servants, do not apply on Parliament Hill. In 2014, our national legislature is bereft of policies and an independent body to handle complaints.

Violence begets harmony, even love for a moment

Ottawa is not an innocent city and never has been. What the attack did, in the immediate aftermath, was unleash an unprecedented display of warmth and solidarity among politicians, as remarkable as it will be fleeting. For a few astonishing hours, love really was stronger than anger.

New book turns a fictional fire hose on Senate’s cynical shenanigans

The book is exceptionally timely, dealing as it does with spending scandals, Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s Supreme Court reference and the abrupt dwindling of the Red Chamber’s stature and seriousness.

Ottawa distracted by trifles, while real trouble looms

An election about policy? Look no further

Real problems are only lamented and never seriously addressed. Unfortunately, we have an election to get through first.

Canada pretends to do something about ISIS

Unfortunately, history suggests these militias are unreliable allies; partners of convenience, at best, driven by sectarian rivalries but united in mistrust of the West.

Everyone wants ‘action,’ no one ready to act

Justin The Inevitable

Trudeau promises relief from the tiresome and hateful bickering that constitutes political discourse—a discourse grown more crude and savage during the Harper years.

Harper’s foreign doctrine: the responsibility to object

As a response to villainous foreign regimes and their brutal suppression of women, and detested minorities it is pretty anemic.

Trudeau should think twice before legalizing pot: Susan Riley

Early polls suggest Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau will win youth support, but lose seniors with his support for legalization—but that, for a significant majority, pot will not be a ballot box question in 2015.

Northern Gateway too illogical to survive: Riley

Of all the oil pipelines on offer these days, none are as politically provocative, environmentally menacing, difficult to build, and—to use the technical term—totally nutty, as the Northern Gateway.

Harper ‘couldn’t care less’ and that works: Riley

Prime Minister Stephen Harper doesn’t waste time explaining. His leadership style is authoritarian, arrogant, and sometimes hostile. It shouldn’t work, but, so far, it has.


Parliamentary Calendar
Tuesday, March 31, 2015
A preview of Parliamentary precinct renos March 30, 2015

Photograph courtesy of Public Works
An artist's rendering of what the outside of the Sir John A. Macdonald building will look like when construction is complete. A new addition has been built, connected to the main heritage space by a glass atrium. Public Works says work wraps up this month, aside from a few finishing touches.
Photograph courtesy of Public Works
A cut-away view at the glass-walled atrium that will connect the historic Sir John A. Macdonald building space, formerly the Old Bank of Montreal building, to its annex addition.
Photograph courtesy of Public Works
An artist's rendering of the interior of the Sir John A. Macdonald building's historic space, which used to house bank tellers and will soon host special Parliamentary events.
Photograph courtesy of Public Works
A look at the multi-purpose room space that will be located in the new addition to the Sir John A. Macdonald building.
Photograph courtesy of Public Works
A digital overhead shot of the West Block as it will look after construction. The building’s courtyard is topped by a glass-domed roof.
Photograph courtesy of Public Works
The temporary House Chamber will be in an infill inside West Block’s courtyard, but MPs will be able to access the space without stepping outside, as the entire courtyard will be topped with a glass-domed roof.
Photograph courtesy of Public Works
An artist’s rendering of the inside of the temporary House Chamber to be located in West Block’s courtyard.
Photograph courtesy of Public Works
A rendering of a lobby area to be located near the West Block’s temporary House Chamber.
Photograph courtesy of Public Works
The House of Commons is set to add 30 new MPs after this year's election, meaning 30 new seats are needed in the Chamber. Pictured is a prototype of the new seating arrangement, which will be installed in the current Chamber after this year's election. West Block's temporary House Chamber will accommodate all 338 MPs.
Photograph by Public Works
A prototype of the new seating arrangement was set up in the House Chamber last year for some MPs to test out. Having theatre-style seats in the back two rows of the Chamber will allow 30 more MPs to sit in the current House Chamber.
Photograph courtesy of Public Works
A blueprint of plans for the West Block, including the temporary House Chamber, which will be converted to committee space when renovations to Centre Block are complete. Workers have to dig down about two storeys to build up a foundation to support this new addition.
Photograph courtesy of Public Works
West Block will have fully renovated committee rooms once complete, similar in appearance to this rendering.
Photograph courtesy of Public Works
A view of part of the Wellington Building’s lobby, set to include a green wall.
Photograph courtesy of Public Works
An artist’s drawing of a common space to be located in the Wellington Building.
Photograph courtesy of Public Works
An example of what the Wellington Building’s committee rooms will look like, of which there will be 10 total.