Tag Archives: Canadian politics

I’m on a Boat, Y’all! (With Canada’s Hyper-Conservatives)

Ricky Brigante via Flickr ((CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

In The Walrus, Canadian writer Peter Norman spends a week with followers of Canada’s fear-mongering conspiratorial conservative Ezra Levant to explore how Trump’s nationalistic fervor has taken hold across the border, and what it portends.

How does an ordinary Canadian become a Rebel? During my week at sea, I began to classify Rebels according to the issues that made them angriest—the ones that had originally brought them into Levant’s orbit. Fear of Islam and a distrust of mainstream climate-change science were the most prevalent. Rebels might start out as temperate conservatives, centrists, or even leftists (Faith Goldy said that her conservatism had emerged from the ashes of a youthful hard-left zeal). But at some point, a gateway issue draws them in.

Maybe a sudden spike in a tax bill is what enrages them, or they lose their job. It could be a workplace incident in which they’re accused of exhibiting some stigmatized trait—racism, sexism, transphobia—that they don’t believe they possess. Or, watching the news, they are overcome by the horror of an Isis terrorist attack.

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Canada, Who Are You?

In a box in my basement, I keep a small bag of letters from my Canadian friend Dayna. We got tight in high school in Phoenix, Arizona, but after she moved back home to Calgary, Alberta, we corresponded by mail. Growing up, cars with Manitoba and Saskatchewan license plates filled my city’s streets during the mild desert winters. “Another snowbird,” my dad would say from behind the wheel. “Be nice to them. They’re good for the economy.” Dayna was the first Canada I actually got to know.

For four years, Dayna and I kept in touch by exchanging mixtapes and letters filled with our teenage obsessions. Hers also contained tantalizing visions of a foreign land. She called dorks “knobs” and heavy-metal kids “bangers.” In the photos Dayna and her friends sent, their cars shimmered with a crystalline sheen and you could see their breath. It all seemed so exotic. Read more…

Who Is Justin Trudeau? Four Stories About Canada’s Next Prime Minister

While we Americans were busy debating the latest in Joe Biden’s will-he-or-won’t-he status and trying to keep track of just how many Republicans are still in the race, Canada went ahead and elected* their next Prime Minister. So who is the soon-to-be resident of 24 Sussex?

Justin Trudeau, the leader of Canada’s Liberal Party, is a boxer, a self-described feminist, and a former high school teacher. He’s also “young, handsome, [and] charismatic,” according to The New York Times. He’ll be the second-youngest Prime Minister in Canadian history and the very first to follow a parent into office (his father was former Prime Minister Pierre Elliott Trudeau, making him the scion of Canada’s only political dynasty). But those are just the headlines; together, these four stories help paint a richer picture of the man who will soon lead our northern neighbors. Read more…