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Hong Kong protests test China’s resolve

The crowds of protesters in the streets of Hong Kong continue to grow, and they have spread beyond Central (the business district) to Kowloon and Causeway Bay.

The police are already using tear gas and pepper spray, and rubber bullets will be next. READ

We are living in the dark

What should we make of the tear-stained apology given by the prime minister’s parliamentary secretary for his bizarre behaviour last week in the House during question period? Was Paul Calandra’s apology sincere or an attempt to downgrade his circus performance into mere soap opera? READ

Blue Dot Movement rolls across Canada

As an elder, I’ve watched Canada and the world change in many ways, for better and worse. Thanks in part to cheap energy and technological growth, the human population has more than tripled, from 2.2 billion in 1936 when I was born to about seven billion today. READ

Social media busts crime

It’s a bird. It’s a plane. Nooooo, it’s Super Social Media! — the crime-fighting hero cracking down on stolen vehicles in Red Deer. And fighting crime around the world. A new Facebook page, Red Deer Stolen Vehicles, has joined the Internet detective forces springing up across North America to catch the bad guys. And it’s getting results, according to a recent account in the Advocate. READ

Who will show leadership on climate change?

The news on climate change keeps getting worse, yet Canada continues to keep its head buried in the (oil) sand. There is now no hope of meeting our international commitment to lower annual greenhouse gas emissions in 2020 by 17 per cent below the 2005 level. In fact, Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s government has never even tried to keep its promise. READ

An imperfect but workable Afghanistan

“We have to recognize that Afghanistan will not be a perfect place, and it’s not America’s responsibility to make it one,” said President Barack Obama last May. No, it isn’t, and Afghanistan is a strikingly imperfect society in almost every respect: politics, economy, security and human rights. READ

Coming in from the cold

We Canadians are not perfect. Among our flaws, we say “Sorry” too much, say “Have a great day” too much, hold doors open to strangers too often. And, while it hasn’t been documented, it’s been reported some us say “Thank you” to banking machines. READ

Rising from the ashes

One doesn’t have to cast back very far to the time when the future of the tarnished Liberal brand in this country could reasonably be questioned. READ

Gap in the TFW logic

Red Deer city council got it right with their extraordinary resolution calling to place foreign worker issues onto the agenda of the Alberta Urban Municipalities Association annual convention. READ

Worst to come in Scotland?

A week ago, the Kurdistan Times warned that “the British are exercising the old colonialist tongue to control the minds and dampen the aspirations of Scottish people who want to vote Yes (to independence).” And lo! It came to pass just as the Kurdistan Times predicted. The silver-tongued colonialists lured the Scots into voting No, and by a fairly healthy margin, too: 55 per cent No, 45 per cent Yes. READ

More judges needed for justice to be served

Two years ago, an Ontario Superior Court Justice slammed the Canadian justice system, saying lengthy court delays are eroding our rights under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. But apparently nobody was listing — and still is not listening, as witnessed Monday in Red Deer’s Court of Queens’s Bench when Justice Monica Bast entered a stay of proceedings in a case of three people charged in a home invasion. READ

Coalition of the unwilling

“If Hitler invaded Hell, I would make at least a favourable reference to the Devil in the House of Commons,” said Winston Churchill in 1941, defending his decision to regard Stalin as an ally after Germany invaded the Soviet Union. READ

‘Islamic States’ on growth curve

A coalition of imams and organizations representing British Muslims has written British Prime Minister David Cameron asking him to stop using the phrase “Islamic State” when talking about the new country carved out of Iraq and Syria by Islamist terrorists. That’s what Abu Baqr al Baghdadi, who has proclaimed himself “the caliph of all Muslims and the prince of the believers,” calls his newly conquered territory, but it’s giving ordinary Muslims a bad name. READ

Scotland pushes U.K. to the brink

If the Scots vote “yes” to independence on Thursday, as one opinion poll now suggests they will, three things are likely to happen in the following week. READ

Why the big secret?

If you had a wealthy, powerful friend who constantly lied to you, spied on you and selectively applied arbitrary rules of engagement against you in secret, would you marry that person? READ

What is a good job?

When politicians promise to create more jobs, they typically promise ‘good jobs’ or ‘good middle-class jobs.’ But what do they mean by a ‘good job?’ READ

Healthy land, healthy people

What if we could reduce worldwide deaths from disease, starvation and disaster while improving the health of people everywhere? According to the World Health Organization, we can. READ

Consistently inconsistent politics in Brazil

You mustn’t expect politicians in a democratic system to come up with ideologically pure, intellectually consistent policies. Their job is to put together a winning coalition of voters who have different and even conflicting interests, and if that requires compromises and even contradictions, so be it. READ

PM busting with pride

Sometimes political analysis need go no deeper than a simple image on a screen. Tuesday offered two of them. One, of course, was the stunning image of one of the ships from the Franklin expedition lying on the seabed where it had rested, undetected, for almost 170 years. READ

Prentice sees big picture

Jim Prentice, who became Alberta’s premier-designate by virtue of a first-ballot Conservative leadership victory last weekend, has more history with Prime Minister Stephen Harper than any of his past and present provincial colleagues. READ

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