Fault Lines

I was honoured to chair the Council Of Canadian Academies panel on misinformation. How can we hope to agree on where we are going if we can’t even agree on where we are? How can we solve those problems we can only solve together if we cannot even agree on what the problem is? How … Continue reading

There are no economic laws

In just the last few months we have had a number of elections in which we reelected incumbents who had performed, at best, somewhere within the zone of mediocrity. We received a timid federal economic statement that makes gestures in the right directions – on inequality and climate and helping those already struggling to get … Continue reading

The Politics of Inflation

If democracy is always a battle for who decides, the powerful few or the many, inflation is the current battleground. And what we are getting is what we have always been getting at least since the 1970s: rapidly higher interest rates, pressures to cut back public spending, concerns about rising wages. In other words, another … Continue reading

Canada needs proportional representation

Here are both sides of the debate on electoral reform, the right one (written by me) and the one opposed. Electoral reform is not a side issue: it goes to the heart of who and what government is for, of who gets to shape the future, the many or a powerful few. We cannot be … Continue reading

Inflation: austerity is not the solution, it’s the problem

SURELY WE HAVE ENOUGH TO worry about without renewed warnings about runaway inflation. But even amid all our various crises, inflation continues to make its way into the headlines: “Canada’s inflation rate hits a three-decade high”; “Is Canada’s inflation rate out of control?”; “Trudeau must act to ease worsening inflation.” We don’t need economists to … Continue reading

Interregnum: finding hope and solidarity in times of crisis and division 

Notes for a CCPA (national) planning session, April 25, 2022. I chair or sit on a number of boards all of which have been going through exercises much like this one. I must say taking stock in this age of multiple crises can be pretty unsettling, depressing. Virtually every day I’m reminded of Antonio Gramsci’s … Continue reading

“Hope and Enlightenment in Dark Times”

https://modernpoetryintranslation.com/alla-gutnikovas-speech-from-court-friday-8-april-2022/ Alla Gutnikova’s speech from the Russian court as she is to be sentenced for standing for peace, for our shared humanity, for hope, for art, for our emancipation.


I recently posted a piece I did for CCPA’s The Monitor recommending five readings on big change. Here I will try to distill some of what I gleaned about what it might take. Know the barriers: Big change is hard so it makes good sense to know the obstacles and have strategies for overcoming them. … Continue reading


Big change is hard though of course big change is just what’s needed. The experts warn and our leaders confirm that we are in the midst of a climate emergency, an existential threat. Every day we see too many vivid and horrifying examples of the tragic costs of colonialism to treat the need for decolonization … Continue reading