George Brown on Confederation, 1865

George Brown was the founder and editor of the Toronto Globe and leader of the Reform Party. Brown was a fierce opponent of John A Macdonald and the Conservatives and he advocated free trade and representation by population. Brown also believed that any close union with Lower Canada (Quebec) was an obstacle to the future... Continue Reading →

Matthew Coon Come at Burnt Church, August 2000

In 2019, some Indigenous leaders in northern British Columbia refuse to allow workers into traditional territory to carry out pre-construction work on a pipeline carrying liquefied natural gas to the coast. Disputes over land and resources between Indigenous peoples and others are nothing new. Back in August 1999-2000, there was a conflict over Aboriginal fishing rights in New Brunswick.... 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 →

Lawrence J. Burpee and Canadian Eloquence

In 2001, I had never heard of Lawrence Johnstone Burpee, but he was to become an inspiration for me. I was writing speeches for Saskatchewan premier Lorne Calvert, who maintained a prodigious schedule. When I broke for lunch after a morning of composing, I would often wander over to the nearby public library in Saskatoon... Continue Reading →

Tommy Douglas, Notes on Public Speaking

Tommy Douglas was one of Canada’s great political orators. He first honed his technique as a university student in Brandon participating in debating clubs and drama. He became an ordained minister and perfected his craft from the pulpit before going on to become a Member of Parliament and then Saskatchewan’s premier for 17 years, and... Continue Reading →

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