Aaron Sapiro, Prairie wheat pools, August 1923

By the early 1900s Western Canadian farmers believed they were being exploited by private grain companies. Aaron Sapiro, an American lawyer from California, had helped to set up marketing cooperatives among farmers in the US.  In 1923, he did a speaking tour in the Prairies promoting cooperatives as a vehicle for farmers to buy and... Continue Reading →

Thomas Homer-Dixon, system failure, 2002

Thomas Homer-Dixon is a professor in the Faculty of Environment at the University of Waterloo, Ontario. His research, writing and speaking is focused on threats to global security including economic instability, climate change, and energy scarcity. He believes that human society and ecological systems are under multiple stresses occurring at a rate that is too... Continue Reading →

Richard Bedford Bennett, Great Depression, 1935

In January 1935 Prime Minister Richard Bedford Bennett delivered a series of dramatic radio addresses to the nation while Canada was in the grip of the Great Depression. Bennett had been staunchly conservative and anti-interventionist, but the country was in deep trouble. Bennett’s brother-in-law, W. D. Herridge, convinced him that he should follow the lead... Continue Reading →

Peter Lougheed, Alberta’s oil, October 1980

Controversy between Ottawa and Alberta over oil is nothing new. In the 1970s there was a spike in international oil prices which enriched Alberta but drove inflation in Canada. Alberta feared what Pierre Trudeau's Liberal government would do in response. Premier Peter Lougheed outlined the issues as he saw them during an October 1980 speech... Continue Reading →

David Suzuki’s 30 years of global warning

Hundreds of government representatives are meeting in Katowice, Poland to agree on how to enforce action to limit further global warming. Sadly, some of the world’s largest oil and gas producers -- the US, Saudi Arabia, Russia and Kuwait -- are trying to block progress at Katowice. Canada’s most prominent environmentalist David Suzuki has been... Continue Reading →

Goldwin Smith on Canada’s joining the U.S., 1888

U.S. President Donald Trump has imposed tariffs on Canadian steel and aluminium and is threatening to do the same on automobiles. He has attacked Prime Minister Justin Trudeau as weak, dishonest and worse. Back in the 1880s, Professor Goldwin Smith of Toronto acted as a self-appointed proponent of Canada's full commercial and political union with the... Continue Reading →

Bob White on free trade, February 1988

Free trade is a timely topic in 2017 as Canada renegotiates NAFTA with the United States and Mexico. Back in 1998, Bob White was prominent ilabour leader in a citizens’ movement opposing the Free Trade Agreement with the United States.  White made this speech to the convention of the United Fisherman and Allied Workers Union in... Continue Reading →

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