The Parallel Parliament

Glen Pearson

Posts tagged “progress

Sunny Ways? It’s Up To Us

Posted on September 26, 2018

A lot has changed in the three years since Justin Trudeau’s government came to power, promising to deliver on the “sunny ways” he promoted during the campaign.  A few big things got in the way – a court ruling on Trans Mountain pipeline, struggles with the provinces, including the Doug Ford victory, carbon pricing troubles, Maxime Bernier, and, inevitably, Donald Trump – leaving Trudeau’s re-election chances a year from now in the “unsure” category. The promises of a brighter day now seem almost passéin the turmoil of recent years. But maybe not. Gradually, perhaps inevitably, an increasingly number of citizens in this country, America and Europe are casting a cautious eye on all the chaos fulminating from identity politics, an inflammatory social media, hyper-partisanship, and the…

The Third Place (Chapter 9) – Rebuttal

Posted on August 9, 2018

Eventually what was rumbling through Finn’s mind emerged, not in speech but in words. He had kept his anger and channelled it into something more creative.  What resulted was a piece of brilliant writing that seemed to set the universe right again. The local print newspaper responded quickly to Finn’s request to write a column on the need to see the Third Place for the remarkable operation that it really was. He told us nothing about it, but the newspaper had offered him a feature column in its Op-Ed section on a Saturday a few weeks following the online publishing of the university’s piece. It was Daisy that had risen early that morning and collected the paper from the front doorstep.  After sitting down for a…

The Time For Tinkering Is Over

Posted on May 25, 2018

Writing posts like this is never easy.  Partisans of one stripe or the other relentlessly claim that their party’s policies will do the trick, introduce a new era of prosperity, or restore voter confidence in politics and democracy.  We’ve heard all this before, numerous times, and in diverse fashions, but the net result always seems the same – loss of voter confidence that leaves many wondering if anybody can really turn things around. Yesterday I did an interview with our local paper on a Toronto Star story that concerned how government interventions at various levels have helped the city’s food bank – the country’s largest – see their numbers decline somewhat.  It true – all of it.  Remedial efforts through things like tax credits,…

Progress Despite All That Negativity

Posted on April 14, 2018

This week I posted a quiz compiled by Hans Rosling regarding our knowledge of the broader world, specifically the strides made in global health and poverty.  You can find that post here.  I heard from a number of folks taking the quiz that they failed – miserably.  We laughed when I told them I only got half of the questions right.  Inwardly I chastised myself for my own lack of knowledge. Rosling, in his book Factfulness,takes that quiz a little further and talks about the results.  The findings are fascinating and troubling – especially in a series of questions that are neither trick queries or realities that can’t be found thousands of times on the internet.  In some research of 12000 respondents, here’s what…

Our Frail Craft

Posted on March 8, 2018

Former UN Secretary General Ban ki-Moon once voiced a perceptive observation concerning humanity’s potential and its limitations:   “We are the first generation to be able to end poverty, and the last generation that can take steps to avoid the worst impacts of climate change.” He went on to talk of how future generations will judge us on the strength or weakness of our moral vigor to manage change. And that’s just how it’s playing itself out.  We’ve learned in a previous blog about how the world is making important strides in fighting destitute poverty in the developing world.  Much of this is due to governments rising to the challenge of the UN’s Millennial and Sustainable Development Goals and also for the abilities of…

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