John W. Dean (Nixon’s lawyer) on the current President

Remember John Dean, from the old days? At the time he struck me as one of the (rare) good apples in a bad bunch.
Dean’s observations here, from the CBC’s “Power and Politics” show, are excellent. Inquiring minds will be rewarded by waiting till the end of the interview (or advancing the tape to 7:12)….”How’s this going to end?”
http://www.cbc.ca/player/play/895330883682

(For better or worse, CBC’s video player includes several non-skippable public service messages.)

North Korean leader’s half-brother murdered in Malaysia: Reuters

I noticed this tid-bit in the details of the story.

The portly and easygoing Kim Jong Nam was believed to be close to his uncle, Jang Song Thaek, who was North Korea’s second most powerful man before being executed on Kim Jong Un’s orders in 2013.
Sometimes being second-most-powerful just isn’t good enough.

Source: North Korean leader’s half-brother murdered in Malaysia: source | Top News | Reuters

How to protect Ontario from Trump’s America First plan: Cohn | Toronto Star

Editorial writer Martin Reg Cohn concludes that “while economics dictates [trade] relationships at the subnational level, politics intrudes at the national level.”

And offers a nice comparison of Trudeau’s political tactics compared with Wynne’s…

“As Trump took power, Trudeau … moved decisively to dump former Liberal leader Stéphane Dion as his foreign affairs minister, replacing him with Chrystia Freeland, who has stronger American affinities.

“By contrast, Ontario’s trade envoy in Washington is a Wynne crony, former Liberal MPP Monique Smith, with no discernible talent for cross-partisan engagement. Smith worked on the premier’s transition team in early 2013, but didn’t know when to transition herself out — prompting Wynne’s advisers to use Washington as an exit strategy. All these years later, she seems as ill-suited for American diplomacy as Dion was, occupying a post too vital to be a dumping ground.”

“…while economics dictates those relationships at the subnational level, politics intrudes at the national level.”

https://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2017/01/26/how-to-protect-ontario-from-trumps-america-first-plan-cohn.html

As Trump stresses ‘America First’, China plays the world leader

I find it hard to argue with this conclusion, but I didn’t see it coming.

” ‘If anyone were to say China is playing a leadership role in the world I would say it’s not China rushing to the front but rather the front runners have stepped back leaving the place to China,’ said Zhang Jun, director general of the Chinese Foreign Ministry’s international economics department.”

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-trump-china-analysis-idUSKBN1590KJ

The Liberal Democratic World Order Is Falling Apart – Democracy is for suckers

A short post by Errol Mendes, Professor, Faculty of Law, Common Law Section, University of Ottawa. My take-away: democracy is for suckers.
Prof. Mendes proposes three ways for liberal democracies to fight the tide or authoritarianism:

  • “First, they must use all their powers of political, economic, and social persuasion to shine a bright light on the “post-truth” fabrications fuelling [sic] the new authoritarianism;
  • “Second, they must examine their own glasshouses to see how the so-called Washington Consensus liberal order has produced too many losers, too many corporate robber barons, while creating a level of social inequality, job loss, and poverty that begs the title “neo-feudal.”
  • “Finally, progressive leaders, parties, and governments must use the human rights agenda to promote the lives and interests of all.”
Very quaint.  We’re doomed.

http://www.cips-cepi.ca/2017/01/13/the-liberal-democratic-world-order-is-falling-apart/

Source: The Liberal Democratic World Order Is Falling Apart – Centre for International Policy Studies

Anti-pipeline protestor tosses pumpkin seeds at Canada’s Trudeau

Pumpkin seeds? Next thing you know it will be sunflower seeds, watermelon seeds, grape seeds….when will this madness end?

OTTAWA (Reuters) – Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is usually greeted by cheering crowds when he goes out in public but received a less pleasant welcome in Hamilton on Friday – a handful of pumpkin

Source: Anti-pipeline protestor tosses pumpkin seeds at Canada’s Trudeau | Top News | Reuters