National Newswatch

Trump lies. That makes negotiating NAFTA impossible

Sep 5 2018 — Neil Macdonald — It’s almost sad watching good journalists trying to report on this sewage backup of a negotiation in Washington. Because we are trained to think inside the box, to respect (even genuflect to) authority and processes, most mainstream media reporting has treated the NAFTA talks as a serious endeavour in a rules-based world: a give-and-take among […]

The Saudi temper tantrum could land one devastating blow — to Canadian health care

Aug 15 2018 — Neil Macdonald — Here’s a proposed Canadian reply to the escalating Saudi temper tantrum. Call in the kingdom’s ambassador and tell him: Sorry, Mr. Ambassador, but Canadian universities will never again accept Saudi medical residents. The government could explain that cancelling orders for relatively piddling amounts of wheat and maple syrup is the kingdom’s perfect right, subject of […]

Why wasn’t Jaspal Atwal on Canada’s no-fly list?

Mar 6 2018 — Neil Macdonald — Never mind the matter of why the failed assassin Jaspal Atwal would be invited to any sort of diplomatic reception, let alone one starring Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his wife. Political parties can be venal and willfully blind to ugly realities in pursuit of votes, and that should be no surprise.

When it comes to harassment in politics, powerful people are writing rules for themselves

Nov 29 2017 — Neil Macdonald — As required, I’ve read and consented to updates of CBC’s regulations covering sexual harassment and other venality. The rules are exceedingly clear, and similar to those governing employees at other Crown corporations or public servants in government departments. Basically, it spells out unacceptable behaviour: bullying, unwanted sexual advances, uninvited physical contact, sexual innuendo, demeaning language, […]

In Canada, the concept of ‘tax fairness’ is meaningless

Oct 31 2017 — Neil Macdonald — If I had Finance Minister Bill Morneau’s money, I’d buy a first-class ticket to Paris, then find the nearest Porsche dealership, acquire a loaded Carrera, drive straight to that villa in Provence he owns through a shell company, and send a note back to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and the Canadian public tendering my resignation […]

Donald Trump is operating straight from the white supremacist playbook

Aug 29 2017 — Neil Macdonald — The New York Times Daily podcast featured an interview last week with a fellow named Derek Black, who was suckled from childhood on white supremacy and even helped create a children’s page on Stormfront — his father’s website — which is variously described as “white nationalist,” “white supremacist” and “neo-Nazi.” His godfather was David Duke, […]

Canada’s review of arms sales to Saudi Arabia runs into a bit of a snag

Aug 24 2017 — Neil Macdonald — It’s hard to report this with a straight face, but Global Affairs tells me that its urgent and serious review of Canadian arms sales to Saudi Arabia is running into a bit of a snag. Apparently, despite images of Saudi troops using Gurkha combat machines, manufactured by Ontario-based Terradyne Armored Vehicles, in their campaign to […]

Canada needs to come to terms with the migration crisis Trump is creating

Aug 5 2017 — Neil Macdonald — The most tempting, obvious epithet for the enthusiasm with which the Trump administration is scaring displaced Haitians out of the United States is shameful. Utterly, debasingly, shameful. But you might as well scold a dog for farting. Trump and his cohort are shameless. They’re most likely proposing toasts, grinning and backslapping; waves of (black) foreigners […]

Sooner or later, the bill will arrive for Trudeau’s spending

Jun 13 2017 — Neil Macdonald — Setting aside the strange, faith-based alchemy of money-printing, government finances are pretty simple: if the government spends more than it takes in, it either has to borrow the difference, or raise taxes. Eventually, enough spending and borrowing will force it to raise taxes. And that is where Justin Trudeau’s government is heading. His ministers, most […]

Canada mustn’t roll over on trade for America’s bully-in-chief

May 16 2017 — Neil Macdonald — This is what Canada’s representatives in Washington have to put up with: “NAFTA … was so one-sided. Both from the Canada standpoint and from the Mexico standpoint. So one-sided. Wilbur [Ross, the secretary of commerce] will tell you that, you know, like, at the court in Canada, we always lose. Well, the judges are three […]