National Newswatch

Liberal COVID-19 vaccine policy: Sticking it to Canadians

May 26 2021 — K.W. Grafton — COVID-19 headlines for May 14 included the following: “Canada could be mixing and matching COVID-19 vaccines by the summer: Tam” Mixing COVID-19 vaccine doses leads to more reactions, study finds, which may be ‘first sign of success’ Canada reports 28 cases of rare blood clots following AstraZeneca vaccinations As some provinces halt the use of […]

Quebec Bill 96: Sovereignty wolf in autonomy sheep’s clothing

May 14 2021 — K.W. Grafton — A new bill tabled in the National Assembly of Quebec legislature by Coalition avenir Quebec (CAQ) member (Borduas) Simon Jolin-Barrette, minister responsible for the French language, aims to amend the Constitution of Canada and establish Quebec as a sovereign nation – with French as it’s official and common language (which most Canadians thought was the case already). […]

The Income Tax Act vs. heritage conservation: How the federal government encourages demolition of Canada’s built-heritage assets

Mar 22 2021 — K.W. Grafton — Like the grim reaper of Python fame, the taxman stands hooded in black cloak, his deadly scythe sweeping over Canada’s dwindling built-heritage assets. If you have ever been perplexed by the argument that it was cheaper to “tear it down and build a new one” in defence of the demolition of a cherished heritage building […]

Bill C-14 is an Amex “Black Card” for Liberals

Mar 7 2021 — K.W. Grafton — Bill C-14 “An Act to implement certain provisions of the economic statement tabled in Parliament on November 30, 2020 and other measures” was introduced into parliament on December 2, 2020 by Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland to the Liberal government’s “Fall Economic Statement 2020”. The bill is in second reading, with the most recent […]

City of Ottawa demand for federal heritage protection should be clarion call to other municipalities across Canada

Mar 5 2021 — K.W. Grafton — The four-year battle between concerned citizens and Chateau Laurier owner Larco Investments Ltd. of Vancouver – over a proposed controversial neo-modernist addition to the landmark Chateauesque style hotel – reached another milestone on February 24, as City of Ottawa Council ignored public opposition and voted 14-10 to approve Larco’s Heritage Permit application. The saga began in December […]

C-minus good enough for Chateau Laurier says City of Ottawa: City will request Parks Canada strengthen heritage protection

Feb 27 2021 — K.W. Grafton — In a 14-10 vote Wednesday, despite designation as a National Historic Site of Canada, Ottawa City Council approved the long-controversial Chateau Laurier Heritage Permit application described by heritage architect and Built Heritage Sub-Committee member Barry Padolsky as “not a great piece of architecture”. Padolsky graded the latest Larco design a C-minus. While City Councillors are […]

Not a great piece of architecture: Calls for federal protection of National Historic Sites

Feb 11 2021 — K.W. Grafton — The long saga of “Battle Chateau” continues. During an unprecedented virtual City of Ottawa Joint Meeting of Planning and Built Heritage held on February 5, local heritage architect and Built Heritage Sub-Committee member Barry Padolsky awarded the current Larco design proposal a C-minus to C-plus grade for architectural merit, saying authorities had failed to protect and enhance […]

Politics or science? Quebec COVID lockdown by the numbers

Jan 25 2021 — K.W. Grafton — As the World Health Organization (WHO) pleads with world leaders to end COVID-19 lockdowns globally, Quebec Premier Francois Legault instituted a full lockdown and curfew across the province. Now the federal government is urging Quebec to ease restrictions. Following the recent death of Raphael Andre outside a homeless shelter in Montreal – closed (somewhat counterintuitively, given it’s […]

Prime Minister defers Chateau Laurier nationalisation to Anand

Dec 14 2020 — K.W. Grafton — In response to a letter from local heritage advocate Robin Collins and former City of Ottawa Councillor Peter Harris of the “Protect the Chateau Laurier Group (PTCL)”, requesting that the federal government bring the landmark Ottawa heritage hotel back into the Crown portfolio through nationalisation, the PMO says that the Prime Minister is deferring the […]

Protect the Chateau Laurier group fronting effort to nationalize historic Canadian landmark

Dec 5 2020 — K.W. Grafton — A new roots activist group “Protect the Chateau Laurier (PTCL)”, founded by former City of Ottawa councilman Peter Harris and built heritage advocate Robin Collins, are spearheading a movement to have the historic landmark Chateau Laurier hotel adjacent Parliament Hill in Ottawa brought back into the Crown portfolio. In June of 2019 the City of […]

November election will be a referendum on America

Oct 30 2020 — K.W. Grafton — If character keeps homo sapiens from the abyss, it often seems to desert us when we reach the top of the mountain. This unfortunate reality of human nature seems inescapable for many in Washington. Pennsylvania Avenue is paved with good intentions gone, and campaign promises sold to the highest bidder. It is also the road to power […]

E pluribus unum Praeses: Trump fails American Values 101

Oct 17 2020 — K.W. Grafton — With perhaps the only presidential “debate” this election cycle in the rear-view mirror – described politely on MSNBC by ex-Trump lawyer/fixer and felon Michael Cohen as a “fecal-display” – and a November 3rd election looming on the near horizon (unless the President can find some creative way to delay it), it is timely to look back over the […]

‘National Security Leaders 4 Biden’ highlight threat to democracy

Oct 7 2020 — K.W. Grafton — Many watching the first Trump-Biden debate on September 29th were haunted by the words of outgoing president Barack Obama in 2016, who described Donald Trump as, “uniquely unqualified to be President” and “unfit”. Unfortunately, more than mere partisan hyperbole, Trump has vindicated Obama’s remarks daily over the past four years – tweet by presidential tweet. With […]

Canada First: Will O’Toole have to put the “Progressive” back into “Conservative?

Sep 24 2020 — K.W. Grafton — Newly elected Conservative Party of Canada (CPC) leader Erin O’Toole, MP for Durham and former Minister of Veterans’ Affairs, released a video on Labour Day announcing his new “Canada First” policy with the broad statement “It’s time for economic policy that puts Canadian workers first.” While specifically targeting Canada’s ravaged auto, energy and forestry sectors, […]