Archive for November, 2007

Just found this site: Canada Free Press


Anything with the words ‘Free’ and ‘Press’ in it usually attracts my attention as I think it means ‘independent’ and ‘unbiased’. After a quick browse through the site, though, my initial impression is that the Canada Free Press is the Canada NeoCon Press.


OK, that may be a little harsh, but feel free to visit the site and form your own opinion.

November 30, 2007 at 8:26 pm 4 comments

Canada: One of the Best Places to Live?

Canada is ‘recognized’ internationally, again:  UN ranks Canada in top 5 best places to live.

This is based on health, education and economic indicators.

So, why should we care?  Why should anybody care?  Will we actually use this data to try to help countries that are low on the list?

November 30, 2007 at 7:54 pm Leave a comment

The Changing Sensibilities of Canadians

One of the biggest news stories of the past week has been about a bench clearing brawl between two teams of eight-year old hockey players. Those who aren’t Canadian may be surprised to learn that this isn’t a regular occurrence; and by that I mean brawls making the news and not the brawls happening.


I distinctly remember being involved in a bench-clearing brawl when I played hockey at that age. What I don’t remember – because it never happened – is the subsequent hoopla over the situation. We didn’t get any media attention for our brawl. Of course there also weren’t camera phones in every pocket when I was that age either.
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But there is also a change in the average Canadian’s opinion on fighting and aggression in hockey. The debate about the role of fighting in hockey has grown louder year by year. One camp feels that fighting has no place in the sport and something needs to be done to eliminate it from the game. The other side runs over to the ‘pacifists’ and proceeds to smack them around in an extremely visceral argument. The pacifists then feel morally superior. And so it goes…


One side feels that Don Cherry is the devil incarnate. The other side embraces Don Cherry for being the devil incarnate. At least the two sides can agree on something.

November 30, 2007 at 4:27 pm Leave a comment

You Know You’re Canadian When…

You wake up at 7:00 a.m. to go to Tim Horton’s for a Double-Double and there’s already a line-up ten people deep.

November 29, 2007 at 11:32 pm 5 comments


From the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy:


The term “nationalism” is generally used to describe two phenomena: (1) the attitude that the members of a nation have when they care about their national identity and (2) the actions that the members of a nation take when seeking to achieve (or sustain) self-determination. (1) raises questions about the concept of nation (or national identity), which is often defined in terms of common origin, ethnicity, or cultural ties, and while an individual’s membership in a nation is often regarded as involuntary, it is sometimes regarded as voluntary. (2) raises questions about whether self-determination must be understood as involving having full statehood with complete authority over domestic and international affairs, or whether something less is required.


And, from the same site, a particularly Canadian example:


It is traditional, therefore, to distinguish nations from states — whereas a nation often consists of an ethnic or cultural community, a state is a political entity with a high degree of sovereignty. While many states are nations in some sense, there are many nations which are not fully sovereign states. As an example, the Native American Iroquois constitute a nation but not a state, since they do not possess the requisite political authority over their internal or external affairs. If the members of the Iroquois nation were to strive to form a sovereign state in the effort to preserve their identity as a people, they would be exhibiting a state-focused nationalism.


I find it interesting that the Iroquois, a people found in Canada, were used as an example. Canada, and Canadians are fond of introspection with regards what we are. What is Canadian culture? What is the Canadian Nation, as opposed to the Canadian State? Is there even such a thing as a Canadian Nation?

November 29, 2007 at 6:54 pm 4 comments

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