The Parallel Parliament

Glen Pearson

Posts tagged “internationalism

Paris and Avoiding the Human Cost

Posted on December 10, 2015

THOSE MEETING IN THE ONGOING SESSIONS at the climate change summit in Paris have a number of impending tragedies hanging over their heads. They talk in urgent terms about floods, drought, heat, cold, ocean currents, wind directions, and desertification, but the ultimate concern they face in the next few decades is really about people – millions and millions of them. Worst of all, global leaders still don’t know how to handle the coming onslaught. We’d be foolish think this will be a future phenomenon. Already a few million such souls are migrating over the earth in search of sustainability and security. It’s just that their numbers are about to get a whole lot bigger … and troubling. We talked about this before, but it…

Election 2015: What in the World?

Posted on September 29, 2015

IT WAS SUPPOSED TO REMAIN CONFIDENTIAL, and was even marked “secret” on its cover page, but the contents were obtained by the Globe and Mail. It wasn’t pretty. Neither was it inconsequential. In a presentation prepared by senior Foreign Affairs officials for a high level meeting two weeks ago, the analysis could be wrapped up in one sentence: “Despite Canada’s reputation as an active player on the world stage, by many measures, its relative influence has declined or is under threat.” It wasn’t a conclusion the government would have liked to hear, and so it sought to keep it quiet. And yet we know it; Canadians have felt the slippage over recent years, but because these issues are at a global level they have felt there…

“Election 2015: The World is Watching”

Posted on August 18, 2015

“WHAT WOULD BE THE POINT,” Jesus asked his generation, “if you gained the whole world but lost your soul in the process?” It was a timely reminder, but there are increasing numbers of Canadians who wonder if their country might be in the process of losing both. There’s no better time than an election to focus on what we’ve gained and what we’ve lost. While it seems like everyone is focused on jobs, the middle class, debt, and taxes at present, we need to remember that a world is watching and that the stakes are higher that just the domestic arena. Former Conservative Prime Minister Joe Clark has provided a timely reminder of just what our nation has lost in the past few years.…

Taking Civil Society Global

Posted on April 14, 2015

SO, THE WORLD DOESN’T SEEM TO BE DOING SO GREAT. As Henry Kissinger reminds us in his latest book, World Order, the dominant governance system developed during the Cold War is giving way to outright confusion around the globe. No one knows quite how to pick up the pieces and fashion something more equitable and prosperous. Brazil, China, Russia, even Iran, are challenging the status quo in everything from nuclear power to climate change. The traditional players, like Canada itself, seem to be in some kind of holding pattern, preferring to hold their cards close than actually get out there and assist in developing a better global order. The European Union has 28 members, dismal economic growth, a troubling economic decline, and a badly…

A Woman’s Place Is In The …

Posted on January 15, 2014

  IN A COUPLE OF DAYS, JANE HEADS TO SOUTH SUDAN with two other formidable women to oversee our projects in that troubled region of Africa.  It happens every year, regardless of circumstances either here at home or over there.  Commitment like Jane’s knows no irregularities. I was asked for coffee by someone last week who wanted me to know that I wasn’t fulfilling my role as a husband because I was letting my wife head into a conflict region.  “She needs you there to take care of her, Glen, in case something happens,” he observed. For the next 30 minutes I took him through Jane’s remarkable exploits around the world, in places like Rwanda, Bosnia and Somalia.  I told him of when she travelled…

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