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Monthly Archives: December 2012
Brian Dijkema  |  December 21, 2012  |  Parenting, Religion

The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. This verse is often read at Christmas, and it means a great deal to those of us who live in the North where the December months are dark and cold. The passage says that the “darkness” has not overcome the light. But I often think—as I do about many passages in Scripture—how … MORE »

Janet Epp Buckingham  |  December 20, 2012  |  Culture, Fashion, Justice, Religion

It was another day of reckoning for religious Canadians. On a small stage, Paula Celani was back in court this morning fighting a fine for an “illegal” Catholic Mass in Montreal (first discussed here and here by my colleague Peter Stockland). But the spotlight, of course, was on the Supreme Court of Canada today, as it ruled on the touchy subject of court witnesses obscured … MORE »

Ray Pennings  |  December 19, 2012  |  Death, Philosophy, Religion

The “No Regrets” slogan makes me cringe. The t-shirts are bad enough, but it’s the #NoRegrets Twitter hashtag that really gets me. #NoRegrets is a way to rationalize why short-term pleasure can trump long-term prudence, or a way to look back and see unwise or immoral behaviour as really not that bad after all. It’s just a slogan, I know. But ’tis the season for … MORE »

Peter Stockland  |  December 18, 2012  |  Death, Media

I am utterly incompetent to comment on, much less offer pseudo-diagnosis of, the latest U.S. school shooting. I cannot watch the television reportage. My eyes dart past the web and newspaper stories/commentary like a man sprinting to avoid being hit by a bus. I’m not confident I even know the correct name of the town where the killings occurred. Frankly, the unavoidable hits of coverage … MORE »

Peter Menzies  |  December 17, 2012  |  Religion

It has been a bit of a habit lately to grumble and mumble about the “war on Christmas,” as some commentators have labelled it. Maybe it’s just me, but I’m not feeling the tension this year. Yes, yes, the bulk of my corporate e-cards still just happily pronounce season’s greetings and something about being happy over the holidays but dare not speak their name. But … MORE »

Brian Dijkema  |  December 14, 2012  |  Business, Industrial Relations, Vocation

Michigan is now a right to work state. Let the market rejoice, and let unions weep and gnash their teeth. Let prognosticators wait a few minutes before prophesying. The legislation gives workers covered by a collective agreement in their workplace the option of membership (and subsequent dues payments) in the union responsible for negotiating that agreement. Needless to say, the debate around this law has … MORE »

Robert Joustra  |  December 13, 2012  |  Foreign Policy, Politics

Ottawa’s foreign policy community has long been divided on the effectiveness of formal, often long-winded foreign policy reviews. At the Canada International Council, Roland Paris is not a fan (“little more than an articulation of the government’s current policy”), but Jennifer Welsh says it’s long overdue. The sitting government seems to have agreed with critics of a formal review, until quite recently. Now we have … MORE »

Ray Pennings  |  December 12, 2012  |  Culture, Institutions, Politics

I am a monarchist. That doesn’t mean my loyalty is defined by a willingness to line the streets when the royals come to town to swoon at the passage of their limousine. Nor do I share the compulsion that seeks to stamp “royal” on everything as if that magically transforms it into something meaningful and of value. My loyalty in fact, has the opposite effect. … MORE »

Peter Stockland  |  December 11, 2012  |  Business, Games, Industrial Relations

I have a confession that may lead to me following the lead of Conrad Black and abandoning my Canadian passport. Nothing criminal, I must hastily stress. But definitely something that would currently qualify as un-Canadian. Every morning when I read the sports pages, and during the day as I browse the web for news updates, I feel enormous relief—nay, deep satisfaction—that the NHL lockout continues. … MORE »

Peter Menzies  |  December 10, 2012  |  Journalism, Media

Over the past few years there has been an interesting and, particularly for old-schoolers, troubling trend in journalism commentary. Back in the day, the ideal for most of us in the newspaper business was that we should provide a platform with a diversity of views that fairly represented opinion within our communities. At the highest moral end, this meant service to the people of one’s … MORE »