Donald Trump could happen in Canada. It’s already begun.

Donald Trump’s angry, populist surge is already beginning to infect Canadian politics. But will it take root?

Conservative leadership candidate Kellie Leitch says her enthusiasm for Donald Trump does not make her a racist. Leitch arrives at the national Conservative summer caucus retreat, in Halifax in a Sept. 13, 2016, file photo. (Andrew Vaughan/CP)

Conservative leadership candidate Kellie Leitch says her enthusiasm for Donald Trump does not make her a racist. Leitch arrives at the national Conservative summer caucus retreat, in Halifax in a Sept. 13, 2016, file photo. (Andrew Vaughan/CP)

UPDATE: On Thursday, Sandra Jansen announced she is crossing the floor of the Alberta legislature to join the governing NDP. She said the legacy of former premier Peter Lougheed, who brought a moderate, more cosmopolitan outlook to the Progressive Conservatives, has been “kicked to the curb by extremists who are taking over the PC party.”

Sandra Jansen is no delicate flower. The Progressive Conservative MLA for Calgary–North West has survived a scandal that brought down her premier, the resulting chaos in her party and the so-called “orange crush” with which the NDP ended the Tories’ 44-year reign in Alberta. Now in her second term, she thrived before entering politics in the full-contact world of television journalism, anchoring shows on local stations and CTV’s national news channel.

But the brickbats the 53-year-old absorbed last week have knocked her flat. Jansen had tossed in her hat for her party’s leadership, positioning herself on the progressive side of the PC tent with proposals to protect LGBT and abortion rights, departing for a PC convention in Red Deer prepared for a frenzy of glad-handing. Instead, she was greeted with a barrage of invective, harassment and intimidation. Someone scrawled “I hope you die!” on her nomination forms, while supporters of her rivals subjected her to harrowing encounters in the corridor, haranguing her about her liberal social views. “Volunteers from another campaign chased me up and down the hall,” she later said in a note to supporters, “attacking me for protecting women’s reproductive rights, and my team was jeered for supporting children’s rights to a safe school environment.”

FROM THE ARCHIVES: Everyday Americans on why they support Trump

The worst offenders, according to members of Jansen’s team, were supporters of Jason Kenney, the former federal cabinet minister who’s running for the Alberta PC leadership. “They’d close in, get into your personal space and say, ‘You can’t not answer me!’ ” says veteran strategist Stephen Carter, who was guiding Jansen’s campaign. “Sandra would have to turn her back and walk away, and they’d yell at her down the hall.” And if the idea was to drive an unwelcome presence from the contest, it worked: on Tuesday, a badly shaken Jansen withdrew, retreating to her home in Calgary to take stock of her political future.

Kenney issued a statement voicing regret over her withdrawal, but it did not address her specific complaint. The whole experience has left Carter—who has worked for Alberta politicians of all stripe—pondering similarities between these zealots and those who propelled a certain U.S. presidential nominee to the White House. “Never underestimate the importance of being given permission to behave in a certain way,” he says. “We’ve seen videos every day of people chanting ‘lock her up,’ or screaming at the media. That kind of face-to-face confrontation has become normalized.” Asked simply whether a Donald Trump equivalent could succeed in Canada, Carter says: “I’m convinced it’s going to happen.”

The scenario no longer seems far-fetched. Trump’s improbable ascent to the Oval Office has inspired populist movements around the world, lending an aura of acceptability to ideas once relegated to the political fringe—in Canada as surely as in other countries. In the days before the election, more than three-quarters of Canadians polled by Ipsos said they’d be likely to consider voting for a Canadian candidate with a Trump-style platform of stricter immigration control, review of international trade agreements and getting tough on crime. Immediately after the U.S. election, 67 per cent of respondents said they understand the “underlying anger” that led to Trump’s win.

Protesters hold a rally against U.S. President-elect Donald Trump outside the still under construction Trump Hotel, in Vancouver, B.C., on Thursday November 10, 2016. (Darryl Dyck/CP)

Protesters hold a rally against U.S. President-elect Donald Trump outside the still under construction Trump Hotel, in Vancouver, B.C., on Thursday November 10, 2016. (Darryl Dyck/CP)

That’s not the same as liking the man. Poll after poll suggests Trump’s race-baiting, and his claims heard on that infamous leaked tape that he can get away with sexually assaulting women, were disgusting to Canadians. Yet the potency of his platform, and the euphoria induced by his disregard for political taboos, hasn’t escaped the notice of would-be imitators. Even before last week’s events in Alberta, Ontario MP Kellie Leitch had shot to the forefront of the federal Conservative leadership race by proposing a “Canadian values test” for prospective immigrants—a striking echo of Trump’s promise to institute “extreme vetting” of newcomers to the United States. Then, Leitch insisted she didn’t endorse Trump’s candidacy. But the morning after his victory, she hailed his win in an email to supporters as “an exciting message” that “we need delivered in Canada.”

Leitch has promised to be the bearer of that message, notwithstanding her shortcomings as an anti-elitist candidate (she’s a pediatric orthopedic surgeon and a protégé of Jim Flaherty, the late federal finance minister). Others have followed her lead, calling into question the ideals of diversity and tolerance cherished by the country’s urban political class. Steven Blaney, another candidate for the federal Tory leadership, has called for language and “core Canadian principles” tests for would-be immigrants, along with a ban on federal officials who deal with the public wearing face-covering niqabs. The former public safety minister says such changes are needed to stem the “slow and steady erosion” of Canadian values, and promises to use the notwithstanding clause in the Constitution to protect his new rules from Supreme Court challenges.

MORE: How Kellie Leitch touched off a culture war

The question, say experts, is whether support for such ideas could galvanize into a Trump-style movement. Ice-breakers like Blaney and Leitch are exploiting the same rural-urban cultural divide that Trump did in the U.S., acknowledges Clark Banack, a Brock University political scientist who studies populist movements. But the kind of anti-elitist discontent that moves votes is seldom seen in Canada outside the West, Banack notes, and when it arises elsewhere, it tends to be short-lived. “We have sporadic examples of people emerging for a short time around a specific issue,” he says, citing Rob Ford’s rise to the Toronto mayoralty on the strength of working-class, suburban anger. “But overall, Canadian political culture is less susceptible to populism than American political culture.”

Donald Trump is joined by his daughter Tiffany, left, and son-in-law Jared Kushner as he speaks during a news conference at the Trump National Golf Club Westchester, Tuesday, June 7, 2016, in Briarcliff Manor, N.Y. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)

Donald Trump is joined by his daughter Tiffany, left, and son-in-law Jared Kushner as he speaks during a news conference at the Trump National Golf Club Westchester, Tuesday, June 7, 2016, in Briarcliff Manor, N.Y. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)

Another mitigating factor: the relative absence in Canada of a dispossessed working class in a mood to punish its leaders. David Green, a professor at the University of British Columbia’s Vancouver School of Economics, believes Trump’s support base of white men with no college degree would be hard to replicate in this country because the commodities boom sustained Canada’s blue-collar workers, even as the financial crisis crushed the dreams of their counterparts in other countries. Between 2003 and 2015, he notes in a forthcoming paper, mean hourly wages for Americans with a high school education or less fell by six per cent; for the same demographic in Canada, they climbed eight per cent. The effect, he says, was to slow the growth of the economic gap that has fed voter rage in the U.S., the U.K. and parts of Europe. Last year, our top 10 per cent of earners made 8.6 times on average what the bottom 10 per cent pulled in—a ratio that, while high, falls beneath the OECD average and far below the U.S. ratio of 19 to one.

MORE: Trump’s speechwriter on why the American dream moved to Canada

But all that could change, Green warns, if oil prices remain low—especially if the housing market weakens at the same time. The country’s residential construction boom, he notes, has maintained job centres around the country’s large cities, putting more than a few displaced oil patch employees to work. “What do you do with that set of less-than-university-educated guys—the demographic that switched over to Trump?” Green asks. “That’s a potentially worrying connection.”

More so, agrees Banack, if you have a high-minded central government that overlooks their misfortune while pursuing its own pre-occupations. Running against Ottawa, he notes, is a time-tested stratagem for populist movements in Canada, and these days, few national governments are more closely identified with the globalist program of trade, labour mobility and climate-change action than Justin Trudeau’s Liberals. Something like Trudeau’s promised national carbon tax, which will be felt keenly in the West, could be enough to trigger a populist insurgency in Alberta, he says, though it’s safe to assume the federal Conservative party would do everything it could to stop such a movement, given the outcome of the Reform party experiment: “Another vote split, and you could forget about a Conservative federal government for another 10 or 15 years.”

Maybe, but experienced political players are no longer sure economic logic and conventional political calculus are in force. Carter, the Alberta strategist, notes that the online communities where so-called “alt-right” voters congregate—Facebook groups, or conspiracy-fuelled sites like Infowars—don’t traffic in that sort of information. In its place: a strain of fanaticism typified by the onslaught that ran Jansen off the PC stage, which Carter believes is sure to spread. “I don’t know if it’s Trump or social media or just belief that they’re correct that gives a sense of permission,” he says. “But this is not normal.”


Donald Trump could happen in Canada. It’s already begun.

  1. gee … Albertans behaving like mouth-breathing dinosaurs … call me surprised….

    • Albertans have always acted like troglodytes. They have just been able to hide it with the money that came with their dirty oil. Now that nobody is buying their oil, their true nature reveals itself, in all of its ugliness. Maybe Alberta should separate. We need French culture more than pointed-toed boots and hubcap belt buckles.

      • I’ll certainly agree with that!

        • Now that Alberta will not be able to(
          forced ) support the East with “dirty oil money”, you have the gall to be rude to them. I don’t live in Alberta but support them ahead of ignorant,arrogant and rude Easterners.Shame on the two of you.

          • Don’t worry about the two brain dead sheep known as George and Mellor.

          • Listen up you guys…

            a) Oil has never supported this country

            b) Albertans behave like Trogs so that’s what they get called

        • Gosh, what a condescending pretentious trio. Did Rob Ford get elected in Alberta by the “mouth breathing dinosaurs” or in the Ontario which some people for some reason like to call the Centre of the Universe? No, Alberta’s two largest cities elected well educated, free thinking, diverse mayors like Naheed Nenshi, the first Muslim mayor ever elected in Canada. That’s what you get from “troglodytes” who hide their behaviour with “dirty oil money.” Now let’s remember that Alberta has only been a province since 1905 so where exactly do you think all those dirty dinosaurs came from? My own ancestors came from the what we in Alberta call the east…..a province called Ontario… Now if we are going to talk about political ugliness, I do believe I read about a bribery trial going on in Ontario involving your premier’s deputy minister and the alleged bribing of the MPP who is currently the energy minister. That makes your comments kind of a pot meet kettle situation. Given you don’t have dirty oil, you can’t really you can’t even use the dinosaur defence for your political ugliness but then I wouldn’t be the type to judge a whole province on the ugly discourse the three of you seem to love to steep yourselves in sort of like hogs in a pig pen. Some of my best friends are from Ontario and it is of course the place where my ancestors landed when they arrived in Canada so I wouldn’t want to generalize about a whole province of people based on three bad apples.

          • Careful Gage or Emily will say nasty thing to you.
            She’s the resident troll.

          • Yungphart…and right on cue comes the whining, and victim routine

          • Dear old Em is delusional. She is a nasty bigot, in no way different than Donald Trump except she picks on people from a province in her own country vs women, Mexicans and Muslims. It really doesn’t matter who you target Em. Hatred aimed at people based solely on fact that they live in a certain area of the world is bigotry and it is ugly and you flaunt like a badge of honour. People like you and George and Mellor are the reason “The Donald” and others of his ilk such as Kellie Leitch thrive. You are pretentious isolationists. You attempt through your vitriol to make others feel less worthy than you when the opposite is true. I am no victim. I actually pity you.

      • well well – no pun intended. {The story goes that the expression goes back to the sourcing of fresh water historically in the dry landscapes of the Middle East at large.
        That Alberta’s oil should be matched to the French (f)actor in Canadian politics is to say the least a surprise and an encouraging one at that.
        whereas we continue drying up natural resources (oil, water…) as if there was no tomorrow does not mean we should overlook cultural (French, histry…) as if there was no yesterday.
        a bon entendeur, salut
        merci pour votre contribution, monsieur Shaver

  2. There’s a valid reason for anger. Vast swaths of legislation exist solely to make legislators feel good about themselves. Far too much legislation is top-down nanny statism, imposed in efforts to reshape our society in a fashion that certain legislators and their favorite pressure groups feel we need to emulate. We expend huge amounts of tax dollars and legislative energy trying to force Canadians to be more like the Swiss, or the Dutch, or the Bosnians, or the Swahili. We legislate and tax in efforts to please unelected legislators in far off trading blocs, and speakers at symposiums, and lobbyists at global confabs, all in the faint hope that pleasing them will somehow make us more palatable to reprehensible bureaucrats for reasons no one can really explain.
    It goes on and on. We anoint self-appointed elites whose entire adult existence can be summed up thusly- high school, university, government service- to make decisions about industrial or energy or transportation policy, even though they’ve never set foot in an industry, or traveled anywhere that didn’t involve a jet aircraft.
    When we make comments on the obvious stupidities that many of them exhibit (see: Dion, Stephan), they circle the wagons, and demean us. When we suggest that many of them are overpaid and grossly so, they trot out their multiple degrees, and their impeccable pedigrees and credentials, and remind us that it is only their good graces and willingness to make tremendous sacrifices on our behalf that we are able to keep the mere pittances of the products of our own labors that we do. If not for them, they proclaim (often from an airport as they prepare to jet off to some place far warmer than Saskatoon on that same February day), why we would likely starve as we freeze in our log huts. No matter that most of them are unaccomplished in anything except elbowing their way to the front of the public trough (see: Trudeau, Justin; Chretien, Jean; Charest, Jean: etc) as opposed to actually being part of the society that actually works, that actually does the heavy lifting and builds, creates, or maintains the things that make our world go around.
    Many are learned, but without understanding. They have advanced degrees in governance, but have never been led themselves. They have multiple degrees in economics, but have never actually applied their theories by putting their name on a bank note and guaranteeing someone’s paycheque.
    It’s getting closer to the high time that we banish many of our so-called elites to the great lake they call Gitche Gumee when the winds of November come early.

    • Very reasoned argument documenting a commonly held view. However I don’t necessarily agree with your foundation arguments You say “There’s a valid reason for anger. Vast swaths of legislation exist solely to make legislators feel good about themselves. ” then you say “Many are learned, but without understanding. They have advanced degrees in governance, but have never been led themselves. They have multiple degrees in economics, but have never actually applied their theories by putting their name on a bank note and guaranteeing someone’s paycheque.”
      So while I understand your view that “a Trump like change” will be coming here I am not happy that this is the solution to the problem that you describe. But how else can I convince you because I am in the group that you feel are so out of touch. I possess critical thinking. I don’t need to have been poor or a businessman or whatever to understand the angst. It is not enough to get someone outside of the “intellectual elites” and one with “real life experience” ……to be your savour. But I agree with you that this is a very real possibility. Too bad it must come with a show of incivility for street creds. Makes for terrible role models for everyone. Can you respect Rob Ford? Can you respect Donald Trump?

      • I’ll give you a simple example. What is the real point of the carbon tax? When you dig right down, what’s the purpose? We Canadians could vanish, leaving an empty nation, and it would matter not a whit to “climate change”, correct? Will adding additional taxes to the energy we already use actually improve our lives? No. Taking billions of dollars from the productive sectors of society, filtering it through the payroll and pensions of handsomely paid government employees, and then dispersing it back into the economy via endeavors hand-picked by the bureaucracy as the “winning formula” for carbon reduction is somehow supposed to help us? No, it won’t. This is an exercise that we have engaged in solely to please climate alarmists, and the increasingly anti-Western forces at the UN and the EU.
        No one can point to any aspect of carbon taxation and say that this will help Canadians. It won’t help them start and build profitable businesses, or grow better crops, or increase their ability to grow their income for the betterment of their families. It will do the opposite, and why? Because Al Gore, or David Suzuki, or Ban Ki-Moon say we must because we’re reprehensible, that’s why. We’re not even doing it because there is any indication that Canadian lives and incomes are in peril because of it.
        After all, if Calgary was as warm as, say Denver, we would use less energy. If Saskatchewan was as warm as Kansas, farmers would grow more grain, and plant a more diverse variety of crops. If Toronto was as warm as St. Louis, what would really be wrong with that? Nothing. We’ve decided to engage in a war on carbon, but the leaders of that war will never wade ashore under fire, a la “Dutch” Cota or Teddy Rooosevelt, JR.. No, the leaders of our war on carbon will still jet off to Antigua at Christmas, secure in the knowledge that their access to tax dollars for income assures them the ability to increase their own pay and perks to stave off the brutish effects of actual income loss.
        Justin Trudeau, a handy whipping boy if there ever was one, has stated quite succinctly that he believes that climate change is a tremendous crisis, one worth expending vast energies on. However, not only did he jet off with his entourage for a tropical Christmas vacation, but he flew his family across the country for a surfing vacation only a few months later. His actions are the opposite of his expressed beliefs, and great numbers of our media establishment give him a free pass on a lot of it.
        Don’t even get me started on his visit with Fidel…

    • Gee, 2000+ words to say that you don’t like “elites”, but not one specific example of the policies you disagree with.

      • You exaggerate. Barely more than 1900…

        • A lot of Libertarian BS. You must be from down south.
          As for Leitch, she should be shipped south to set table for Donald.

          • Hear! Hear!

            Total agreement Blacktop!

    • Very Ayn Rand of you. Unfortunately, her philosophy has been debunked over and over again. There is no fountainhead, there is no John Galt. It is time to move forward from your days of pining to be with your fellow troglodytes. It is time to embrace your human side.

    • You’re ignoring the fact that some Canadians are of Swiss, Dutch, Bosnian or even ‘Swahili’ background – no one forced them to be that way. I’ve never met anyone who wanted me to be more Dutch nor any governmental pressure to do so but a I have faced a hell of a lot of institutional and governmental pressure to be more English – it’s only in careful consideration that one can discern the residual colonialist pressure. I’ve worked in many productive jobs including some requiring ‘heavy lifting’ if that means either physical labor or just plain hard work and those in the trenches with me were of diverse ethnic backgrounds – I never observed a correlation between ethnicity and ability or effort such as you allege. Madam Mao did what you said sending the ‘elites’ and/or intellectuals to the hinterlands while Stalin did the same with those with theories he didn’t agree with – arguably it did nothing to advance their society or economy; we even have a good direct comparison in East and West Germany. Perhaps you would like to be among the first to wait in the line where we don’t get any shoes.

      • You fail to grasp that those people didn’t leave Switzerland, Bosnia, or South Africa in order to recreate their homeland here. The English and Scots surely did, no doubt. But, those who came after did so because they wished to live in a land illuminated by British liberty.
        Why would you go to all the trouble of fleeing some place like Latvia just to recreate it here? Seems like a waste of air fare to me.

        • “a land illuminated by British liberty”??? More likely, a land where there was no entrenched cultural norm (or so they thought) where they would be free to live as they pleased, including aspects of their culture they felt were being stamped out at home by whichever invaders were currently at the door, whether they be home-grown aristrocrats enclosing the commons, religious fundamentalists overthrowing a secular state, or invaders from a neighbouring country.

    • I quit my office job and now I am getting paid 98 Dollars hourly. How? I work-over internet! My old work was making me miserable, so I was to try-Something different. 2 years after…I can say my life is changed completely for the better.X#1..
      Check it out what i do……..>>>>>

  3. Yer slow off the mark Charlie……we already had Harper…..and tossed him

    Leitch is just trying a publicity stunt

    Catch up, awready

    • “Yer” a little slow off the mark as well Em. The truth birth place of this bigotry in Canada was Quebec or are you denying that Parline Marcois ran on a platform to rid civil servants of the right to wear their religious head coverings? Further, are you denying that the laws in Quebec stop a Muslim woman from entering a public building with her ceremonial face covering? It is really rich how you and your condescending friends can call Alberta backward and conveniently ignore what is occurring in La belle province or perhaps that is what George Shaver was referring to as “French culture” when he was suggesting Alberta separate.

  4. I guess it helps article clicks to pretend and sensationalize, but there’s not an actual possibility, here. If she becomes the next Conservatives’ leader, it will guarantee that the Liberal party remains the governing party for elections to come. It’s a bit entertaining watching the Conservatives fall every which way in hysterics, since their party-of-one was dumped by the Canadian electorate.

    • There was another government in power before the one led by S. Harper. As I recall they barely survived the election which brought Harper’s party to power. Every government has a best before date.

      • @D.H. Nicely put.

      • True. But we also have a three-party system (well, multi-party, but three that get decent votes). If the Cons offer up the likes of Leitch, when Trudeau’s crew run out of time we just might see our first federal NDP government.

        Of course, if we actually get election reform, we may see radically different governments going forward; no more false majorities, and coalitions galore.


          If we try to delude ourselves that Canada hasn’t seen bigotry and ugliness before in provincial politics, starting with ugly and divisive language laws and continuing on with restrictive and ridiculous laws about expressions of religion, we are kidding ourselves. Canada has a long history of hate waves toward First Nations, the Chinese, the Japanese and most recently Muslim and Sikhs as the Quebec govt. tried to limit what head wear they could wear to work and stopped Sikh men of wearing their ceremonial swords in the legislature. To pretend this is a new idea from an Alberta based politician is BS. It is years old…not that this makes any less reprehensible but let’s face it, Trump might have stumbled on the idea to employ it from Canada and not the other way around.

  5. I’m sorry that Sandra Jansen was subjected to this type of behaviour, and I’m sorry that she’s withdrawn from the race. These goons who treated her so badly have now discovered they can win by harassment & intimidation instead of offering policies the majority of voters want. We need to stand up to these people & let them know they can’t get away with it or they will overtake our political systems.

    • Agreed. If people wonder about why it’s hard to find good leaders in politics, here’s a perfect example. It’s like running a business where you allowed your employees to be regularly subjected to verbal abuse, bullying, and threats; and not just by yourself, but by their own co-workers, and then wonder why no one good or qualified wants to work for you. SMH.

      No one should be treated that way. And the argument that “that’s just how politics goes” is BS. Unfortunately, it’s up to the rest of us to stand up for that type of bullying behaviour, as the people who should be doing it (eg, Kenney, as it’s his supporters guilty of these actions), appear to lack the courage to do it themselves.

      • Politics is a blood sport, kids. It’s a battle to be the guys who get to determine how much money they’re going to confiscate, and who they’re going to bestow it upon. That’s it in a nutshell. It requires wearing your big-girl panties. People are increasingly resistant, and viscerally so, to the intrusion of the state largely because the state has grown far too intrusive and confiscatory.
        Many of us are realizing that the path to shrinking government, and getting it to withdraw it’s ravenous and rapacious maw, is to get down and dirty, and refuse to fight nice. If the nanny staters are going to run and hide because we hurt their feelings, I’m down with that. If we’d have known that all it took for them to pack up their crap and go home was to make them cry, we’d have done that a long time ago. But, hey, now we know. Right?

        • Yeah, that would be why Harp is long gone, and Justin is popular.

          10 years Bill ….probably 8 now that Trump is in there.

          • I am confident that once Canadians see that Trump’s policies to grow the US economy work extremely well, our man child in Ottawa will be gone in 4.
            All we’ll get from Trudeau and his gang is a Canada that looks like Ontario-pathetic growth and massive debt-another great Liberal success story.



          • An infection has hit this site. Could it be Americans who now live in Calgary? Jerome has lost his credits with me as far as his admiration for Trump is concerned but I still like him for his opinion of Trudeau II.

          • Justin tried to limit debate in the House of Commons, got caught and then blamed it on the previous government’s bad example. How is he so much better than “Harp”, Em? The guy got in a physical tussle in the HOC. At least Harper never got physical on camera.

        • What nonsense, Greenwood; you just proved my point. People want their civil servants to be serious minded, reasonable, and willing to work with others for the betterment of their constituents ie the opposite of how they’re perceived currently. If you make a work environment too caustic and toxic, then, guess what? Those type of people that are desired the most for public office are going to be driven away. It’s not that complicated.

          And, again, the idea of “well that’s just the way it is” is simply being ridiculous and stupid. Just because something is the way it is doesn’t make it right.

        • American politics is a bloodsport. In Canada, we are more refined. Harper tried to make it into a bloodsport, and we sent him packing. Maybe, you might want to follow him.

          • The idea that we’re more refined is so much tripe. In the end, it still boils down to the powers of taxation, which are backed by the spectre of state violence. There’s no way of making the case that our brand of confiscatory taxation is any more refined than theirs.
            Now, I can take some of the blame for this whole discussion, although it’s not much of a discussion when most of the commentariat fails to try and put forward a case, the Macleans home page is deeply illustrative of the divide between the Canadians paying the frieght and the self appointed elites who have commandeered the train.
            There’s four stories on Leonard Cohen on the front page. The average Canadian tasked with paying the taxes in this country went “Leonard who?” when we heard he died. If asked to name a Canadian musical icon, I would posit that the names Anne Murray, Shania Twain, Burton Cummings, Randy Bachman, KD Lang, and of course the great Gordon Lightfoot all precede Leonard Cohen. He’s not the icon you think he is.
            Cohen is like Margaret Atwood. If you want people to think you’re an intellectual,you have to have a few Atwood books and Cohen CD’s up on your shelf. The difference usually boils down to this: people who pay taxes don’t listen to Cohen and read Atwood. People who spend taxes do. Believe it or not, the consequences of that difference are bode very poorly for the future of our society.

          • No,in Canada it is an elbow to the ribs of Opposition MP and the media tries to blame the victim. Mr. Harper never behaved in any way compared to Trudeau where he told the Opposition to “f…. off” We are so refined now that we accept bad behaviour.George, please read some thing other then CBC or Star.

      • It would be really nice to think that women and men would never have to be subjected to harassment and bullying ever in the work place. As the RCMP and the Military have shown us, it is rampant so I don’t believe we can expect politics to be so much different. We know it goes in the entertainment industry given the actions of people like Bill Cosby and Jian Ghomeshi. We know it goes on the corporate world. We know it goes on in federal politics because obviously the PMO’s office was indulging in it under Harper and we had some physical tussles in the house when Trudeau was trying to limit debate.

  6. “Donald Trump’s angry, populist surge is already beginning to infect Canadian politics”.
    The word “infect” is an interesting and telling choice of words. It implies that there is something contagious and pathologically dangerous in President-Elect Donald Trump’s political stance. It might even be incurable and fatal, God forbid. It must be eradicated before it reaches pandemic proportions.
    I’m afraid this is but another example of the psychotic hysteria and panic which characterizes the Trump Derangement Syndrome.

  7. “I don’t know if it’s Trump or social media or just belief that they’re correct that gives a sense of permission.” Listen to this Carter guy. “Sense of permission.” What a mewling pussy.

    • The only mewling pussy are the sTrumpettes who have been waiting so many years to unleash their own brand of hate and divisiveness. Kinda like you.

  8. Ewww, she’s revolting. A big terror attack in this country and it all changes. Non-elites such as Kellie the Surgeon will soar.

    • Never would happen here. Canadians are much more inure to this kind of politics. You might not be, but then you might just not be Canadian.

      • Canada’s personal fable….

  9. Mr. Greenwood, it is becoming increasingly clear that you prefer not to pay your fair share for the social network that we, as Canadians, enjoy. If that is your stance, I would say that your only recourse would be to become American. That way, you won’t have to pay as much in taxes as all Canadians do. Beware if you get sick though. My American cousin had a heart attack in Houston Texas, and required quadruple bypass. He eventually had to sell his house to pay the hospital bill.

    As for your argument that Canadians are better than Americans, I would say that we are not better but different, in a more socially evolved sort of way. It is somewhat akin to comparing a trilobyte (you) and a modern human (the rest of Canada). Additionally, there is no political elite in Canada. If you had studied political history in Canada, you would know that elitism had never taken root in Canada, like it has in America. That is why an immigrant has more of a chance to become a billionaire in Canada than in America (on a per capita basis). Maybe that is the source of anger, the fact that an immigrant who works hard can become better than you.

    I would say that your ideas are very narrow minded and totally without thought any educational background. Your thoughts seem to be the vague ramblings of an out-of-date, out-of-touch mind; full of bluster but devoid of intelligence.

    • @G.S. I do not believe that other Canadians have given you permission to speak on their behalf (“we”). Your opinions would be more readable in the singular (IMHO).
      Nevertheless, I do think that Bill’s thoughts on Leonard Cohen do reveal his lack of education.

      • George, what’s my fair share? In the last 5 years, I’ve paid out close to $200k in federal income taxes. As an Albertan, my federal tax burden, in relation to federal commitments and spending in the province, is the highest in the country by a very large margin. I’d say I’ve spent about 30 years being way more than fair with the tax dollars that I have earned. I haven’t noticed you earning them. So, what’s my fair share?

        • “Fair share” is in the eye of the beholder. I earn about $100K yearly. Over the last 5 years on that income I’ve paid about $80K in Federal Income Tax, plus provincial income taxes. I live a pretty comfortable life with that income level & don’t begrudge the higher tax rate I pay which goes to support others who are less fortunate than I’ve been.

          • You are dead right about the eye of the beholder. I don’t disparage high taxes simply because I’m a tightwad. I disparage high taxes because for my entire adult life, governments have increasingly rigged the system against the private sector taxpayers who fund it.
            Wages and benefits account for 3/4 of all tax expenditures, and wages and benefits are out of control at all levels of the public sector. They’re out of control because the self-styled elites have either chosen to encourage it in the name of labor peace, or have chosen to ignore it while they expend vast amounts of political energy on issues that are only important to them. (see: climate change, or: same sex marriage)
            We pay salaries of several hundred thousands per year to public administrators whose only decisions are to grant the wishes of the public sector unions, and ramp up public debt when tax receipts don’t match expenditures. Then we excuse it by saying we need to pay well to get “good help.” Frig, this is the opposite of good help.
            We pay salaries, at the top, comparable to the private sector, but don’t impose the same demands of fiscal responsibility. We don’t, apparently, expect that half-million dollar bureaucrats should have to undergo the stresses that are imposed upon people making way less in the private sector when the money runs out. If a guy making 75 or 80k per year can bite the bullet and lay off half his staff when the local economy craps the bed, why do we not expect the same from our senior bureaucrats? Why do we expect GM or Ford to have to shed staff, or Syncrude or Precision Drilling, when the money gets tight, but never seem to expect that job losses and pay cuts should have to occur in the public sector when the money runs tight?
            Then there’s the unfunded pension liabilities that have been laid at our feet. Politicians, and the unelected bureaucracy, have over promised pensions that the taxpayers can’t afford to fund. Can you, or would you, accept an immediate 10% increase in your overall tax bill (not just on income taxes, but on your civic and provincial taxes too) just to get the public sector pensions back on track? What would that tax jump do to your retirement plans? How many extra years would you have to work, or vacations would you have to forego, or other plans would have to go on the back burner or into the trash heap simply so that the guys who fill the potholes or the lady who is in charge of your city hall’s “diversity program” would be spared the same concern? Again, it is the so-called “elites” who have largely created this mess.
            Time and time again, we see attitudes and beliefs of “elites” that are out of step with the Canadians who are burdened by them. “Climate change is a crisis!” they cry from their ivory towers. Yet, it’s down near 15 or 20 on the lists of things Canadians actually give a rat’s ass about. “Gay marriage is high on the list of Canadian concerns!” Yeah, but deal with it after you send a high angle rescue squad to retrieve the Syrian family from the pothole down the street from my house. “Canadians demand action on jobs!”. Sure, then why don’t you let them build a pipeline? “High food prices are a major concern!” I’m sure a carbon tax’ll fix the hell out of that. “Canadians believe in justice!” Try telling that to the couple hundred thousand Cubans who have died trying to escape from the prison called Cuba while you extend the hand of friendship to the Castro’s.
            The bottom line is simple: When I see actual effort expended in bringing down deficits, and making government pension funds solvent, that approach it from an expenditure reduction point of view FIRST, I’ll believe that the “elites” are not actually in government solely for their won interests.

  10. Donald will build a wall: he uses the not unprecedented meme of making an ethnicity a race for all practical purposes and then by applying derogatory characterizations justifies discrimination. Kellie Leitch also wants to build a wall: it’s just more of a technical barrier requiring only the hire of a racial purity task force and enhanced infrastructure for internment and deportation of non-caucasian Catholics. Let’s be very clear: ‘old stock Canadians’ does not mean aboriginals nor Polish mine workers nor Mennonites; like Trump, she is willing to put down long established Canadian minorities. The concept of Un-Canadian activities newly hatched by the CPC is a latter day echo of Un-American activities.

    • It must be realized that the future policy with regards to immigration by Ms. Leitch, et al, is simply a matter of rejecting any possibility of future Sharia laws. Anything else is a Red Herring.

  11. Once all the whining is finished and people realize they dodged a bullet with Hillary, they will acknowledge that the U.S.desperately needs changed. In Canada anyone that cant see the Sharia law for example does not embody Canadian values needs to look again. I expect that people who believe in honour killing and domination of women will eventually challenge the courts that they were not read their rights when they entered Canada. Leitch will have my vote.

    • What are you talking about? There is no Sharia Law in Canada, nor will there ever be. Anyone making those claims is simply engaging in fear-mongering.

      • you have no idea who are the radicalized muslims first they will come so innocently in time ou will know the true colours It has started in All e.u countries go check under muslims in E.u countries and its affect No Go zones and Sahriya la what started and soon in Cannad once they have enough people in the parliament its going tom happen wake up before its too late

      • Of course, not in your life time. Is that your probable reason for lack of fear?

  12. Yes it will for sure…Kellie will be our next Trump See we were right supporting Trump from here in Canada Where is Obama and Hillary who should be advising to be calm to these young rioters and teach them whats Democracy Is this what obama and Hillary called smooth transition even now they are plotting to disrupt the country with her relative soros who is also friend of our Canadian emigration minister who is plotting how to bring in more and more radicalized muslim refugees while ignoring nonmuslim refugees who will be a better choose. all will look bad.not gonna happen Parents of these young people have to tell them this si not th way Democracy works .Mr.Trump clearly said he will take care of everyones problems be patient an give him time.We are sure its the handy work of soras ,Middle east,donors all special interest people at work encouraging these people.As far as rest of Americans who didn’t vote for Mr.Trump &Hillary followers The media (who have to responsible) we are one all are Americans lets unite and build the country we want ,Debt free,Win In Trade again,Power fun military Jobs creation Good health reforms all this can be done only if w behave like a democratic country .we need to teach the young ones whats the meaning of Democracy and the time to heal and unite and support Our New President to do his Job. Now our great neighbour Canada we know you have been fed with all sorts of lies by the media about trump Try to understand this man we elected.he single handedly fought The entire Media,his own unfaithful party,Crooked hillary obama and their donors F.B.I, The State Officials,he said nothing about Legal emigrants or Moderate muslims He respects them it was all about Radical islamic jihadis and Illegals who are both not so good for our country.Now about his remarks about women please let us show you a video of Obama talking about P…y thats locker room talk you don’t tape that and use it after 11 years ? We are sure women talk somethings in private in their rooms thats called private anyway all the women who accused were all bias.8years of Obama was not enough.What can we do ion he didn’t take care of ..we dint call it Blackwash but now even CNN calls it Whitewash ?? we voted for him dammit
    soon Canada is ging to follow suite wait and see there are many in Canada who are fed up like us about political correctness and too sacred to speak out

  13. Is it really that hard for people across Canada to see that Trump like politics will come to Canada? There is a complete disconnect between the voter and the news medias and political elites of our country as well. We see Trudeau jetting around the world to rub shoulders with other elitist Liberals whom believe they are the “chosen ones” to lead the unwashed to the promised land. Canada will follow as all countries around the world realize the flaws to the globalization doctrine of the past thirty years. Yes it will be messy. Yes .. the Liberal media and their political buddies will have to experience the “Shock & Awe” of their lives as did their American counterparts.

  14. If you have some free time on your hands, why not make some extra cash every week

  15. For Blacktop’
    Let’s be clear-I didn’t say I liked Trump the man, I said I liked Trump’s economic policies. And, since you liked my stance on our man child in Ottawa who is trying to spend his way to happiness, you must agree.

    • Thing is, you can’t separate the two. To get his economic policies (and I’m not passing judgment on those polices here), you have to accept an insane racist / misogynist – a man who will have the nuclear codes, yet is childish enough to go ballistic over a speech at a theatre and at a sketch on SNL.

      I’ll be the first to agree that the US is long overdue for a complete overhaul of their political system. But Trump isn’t that. Trump is America committing suicide – and possibly taking the rest of us with them.

      • Keithbram:
        Basically you’re complaining that Trump is not behaving “politically correctly”.
        But Keithbram, get a hold, please. Is lack of political correctness enough for you to be like Chicken Little and claim the sky is falling?
        Give the man a chance before becoming suicidal.
        The Trump Derangement Syndrome has grabbed a hold of your brain.
        Please try and relax.

  16. I hope Donald Trump’s Presidency will be beneficial for Canada. Whether it is or not remains to be seen and only time will tell. As of today, however, the stock markets appear as optimistic as I am.
    But I do know with 100% certainty that the person most responsible for the Trump phenomenon is none other than current lame-duck President Barack Hussein Obama.
    Trump’s election victory is a confirmation of Sir Isaac Newton’s Second Law of Thermodynamics:
    “For each and every action there is an equal and opposite reaction”.
    Newton’s Law is also valid in the field of politics, apparently.
    To correct for Obama’s extreme left-wing Presidency, an extreme right-wing presidency, i.e. Trump, is required in order for the Presidency to return to the “Golden Mean”.
    God bless America.

    • Furthering your “pendulum” analogy, what might possibly be the “equal and opposite reaction” to the force of nature known as Donald Trump? It won’t rest at the “Golden Mean”, it’ll keep on swinging.

      Meanwhile, I also wish America well, and hope that his presidency will be good for Canada. Kelly Leitch will get some mileage out of this because xenophobia, and fear of others who are “different” seem to be the flavour of the year. My 2017 New Year’s wish is for a new flavor, and someone other than Leitch offering it.

  17. Canadian leaders and public should pay attention to what Canada ought to be and not be influenced by elements which emit jealousy, or hate. There was a satiring cartoon during Trump’s campaign of Native Indian saying ,he does not like immigrants. Every one here is immigrants who did not care for the natives, They were reduced to the status what we see today. Thanks to the present government which has started to pay attention to them.
    Immigrants ought to be allowed in measures that they are needed for and after looking after the job requirement of people already here, irrespective of their race,religion or color. Leaders and public who are venting ought their feelings against others because of their race ,religion or color are detriments to Canada. They must understand that immigrants are here to stay and these immigrants are the citizens of this country to be in succession . The Children of the immigrant citizens specially those of Muslims are in the third generation. They will not accept any discrimination if so treated. Canadians in general are very good people but some bad elements like to wrap them in the wave that has just arisen in our south. Let us stay as Canadians and look after ourselves. long live Canada!