National Newswatch

Ontario Liberals are missing a crucial opportunity on road to renewal

Mar 1 2020 — Jaime Watt — Two political debates in two countries, What a striking study in contrasts. The first was the Democratic debate in Las Vegas. I wrote last week how Bloomberg’s entrance to the ring has revitalized the primary race, and how his first debate was about worthy of Vegas. Americans, it seems, agreed. The broadcast smashed ratings records […]

Mike Bloomberg has woken up a sleepy primary contest

Feb 23 2020 — Jaime Watt — In his 1913 book, “Essays in Rebellion,” British journalist Henry Nevinson illustrated an issue facing the Atlantic fishing trade. The problem: when shipped in tanks overseas, cod tended to be “lethargic, torpid … prone to inactivity, content to lie in comfort … rapidly deteriorating in their flesh.” The solution, devised by an enterprising fisherman, was […]

Populism is alive and well in Canada

Feb 16 2020 — Jaime Watt — As a surge of populism sweeps the world, many Canadian commentators climb onto their high horses, pat themselves on the back and declare Canada immune to this short-sighted selfishness. Problem is, if you look below the surface, that notion simply doesn’t hold water. Canada is not unaffected by the factors that are driving this shift: […]

The perils and power of digital media

Feb 9 2020 — Jaime Watt — If there is one lesson we learned this week, it is that digital media continues to shape politics in ways we still do not understand. Since its inception, strategists and pundits have treated digital media as a tool: a way of better understanding constituents and expanding reach to them. The reality is very different. Over […]

Searching for a new consensus on grief in the digital age

Feb 2 2020 — Jaime Watt — Once upon a time, grief was something private. We took pains never to speak ill of the dead. When a person of some profile died, an obituary might appear in the morning paper. Early acts of public grieving were proper and decorous. One’s legacy was given time and space to settle, and the reckoning, if […]

The true cost of military conflict with Iran will be political

Jan 12 2020 — Jaime Watt — Over the past week, the world has watched, slack-jawed, as Western relations with Iran have slid precipitously from uneasy détente to open military engagement. Canadians, in particular, were stunned by the horrific deaths of our compatriots, shot down by an Iranian surface-to-air missile. As the world now knows, on Jan. 3, a U.S. airstrike killed […]

Don’t look for entertainment value in U.S. impeachment hearings

Nov 17 2019 — Jaime Watt — On Wednesday, the first public hearings began in an impeachment process that seems to have been crafted for our era of reality television. Watching the testimonies of Bill Taylor, George Kent and Marie Yovanovitch, I was struck by the soap-opera nature of the hearings. Speaker Nancy Pelosi and her House Democrats have, it seems, learned […]

In this election, small campaigns earned only small victories

Oct 27 2019 — Jaime Watt — So, just what happened on Monday night and how did we end up with the most divided and regionalized Parliament we have seen in recent memory? In my view, it was the utterly predictable outcome of the campaign our leaders chose to run. The result? For some Canadians, this was the “Seinfeld” campaign — a […]