Cancel culture leading to an exodus of universities’ free-thinkers

Knowledge dies when starved of criticism

Cancel culture leading to an exodus of universities’ free-thinkersUniversity administrators and student unions are tearing down something more important than statues. These self-appointed censors are dismantling the dialectic method bequeathed to us by Socrates and generations of scholars, triggering a brain drain away from academia. Neither arcane nor novel, the rigorous, timeless methodology at stake means examining, discussing, and arguing opposing ideas to…

Just the facts? Don’t count on fact-checkers

A closer look at almost every fact-checking organization shows a great deal of politics and vested interests involved

Just the facts? Don’t count on fact-checkersFact-checking takes us past the spin and straight to the truth. Or maybe not. A closer look at almost every fact-checking organization shows a great deal of politics and vested interests involved. Years ago, I went to Snopes.com whenever someone sent me an email thread I wasn’t sure about. I even recommended to others that…

In crisis, radicalism works against balance and progress

Far-left activists and politicians are recruiting and radicalizing in the same way far-right groups did back in the 2008 crash

In crisis, radicalism works against balance and progressCOVID-19 lockdown measures are opening the door to extremists, not just because people are spending more time on the internet at home, but because of the huge impact lockdowns had on the economy and employment. Much like the 2008 stock market crash, which facilitated a substantial rise in far-right extremism, lockdown measures impacted low-wage workers…

The congested logic behind congestion taxes

Vancouver is considering a tax on vehicles entering the downtown. It may well reduce pollution, but at what cost?

The congested logic behind congestion taxesOne definition of insanity is to keep doing the same thing and expecting different results. Another definition might be to do something different and not expect any changes. We all have a tendency to do this. For example, we get married and wonder why we no longer have the same services we had in our…

Federal Clean Fuel Standard is all smoke and mirrors

As proposed, the CFS will do little to reduce GHG emissions, will hike the cost of energy and undermine Canadian energy security

Federal Clean Fuel Standard is all smoke and mirrorsBy Jock Finlayson and Denise Mullen Business Council of B.C. Amid the worst economic and public heath crisis in Canadian history, the federal government has decided to proceed with a major new regulatory initiative that promises to add billions of dollars to the cost of energy for households and businesses in every corner of the…

Don’t blame wildfires on climate change

Fueled by decades of forest mismanagement policies inflamed by radical environmentalist ideology

Don’t blame wildfires on climate changeIn what has become an annual summer tragedy, wildfires again destroyed western U.S. forests this year. Millions of acres and millions of animals have been incinerated, hundreds of homes reduced to ash and rubble, dozens of parents and children killed, and many more people left missing, injured or burned. Air quality across wide regions and…

Shortchanging the essentials while making the court jesters rich

When did you last hear anyone complain “Where is a Women’s Studies professor when you need her?”

Shortchanging the essentials while making the court jesters richThe academic world was all a-twitter a few weeks back with the enormously humorous idea of a “Scholars’ Strike.” The idea was that over two days, university professors would put down their intellectual tools. By doing nothing – or indulging in ever-so-intelligent talking about doing nothing – they would advance the cause of social justice.…

New legislation will end 25 years of CRTC net neutrality

New powers will crush consumer freedom, tax and regulate content on the internet, stifle investment, and increase the cost of streaming subscriptions

New legislation will end 25 years of CRTC net neutralityA federal government that only a few years ago spoke brightly about innovation and embracing the 21st century has sadly lost its way. That was made apparent this week when – smuggled in on U.S. election day when it would get the least attention possible – Heritage Minister Steven Guilbeault unveiled legislation giving the Canadian…

Why traditional schooling fosters better results

Most students learn best in a structured and orderly school environment that’s directed by a good teacher

Why traditional schooling fosters better resultsPicture a school in an underprivileged part of north London, England.  One-third of nearby families live in poverty, a significant percentage are visible minorities, and the neighbourhood crime rate is twice the national average. What kind of academic results would you expect from this school? If you expected this school to score below average, think…

The hazards of pursuing a green power utopia

The federal government’s plan to replace fossil fuels with wind and solar is technically impossible and economically disastrous

The hazards of pursuing a green power utopiaThe combination of wildfires along the U.S. Pacific Coast, two simultaneous hurricanes in the Gulf of Mexico, melting glaciers and peat bog fires in Canada, and an unusually hot summer in Europe has raised global warming fears to frenzied proportions. Environmentalists are urging political leaders to legislate the rapid phase-out of fossil fuels. Curiously, the…

The ugly truth about democracy in decay

Perhaps it’s not democracy that has been corrupted, nor the democratic process, but rather the electorate itself

The ugly truth about democracy in decayIf the majority of the electorate is not already disillusioned and alienated by the extreme partisanship of politics, the upcoming United States elections will likely push another generation of voters into the void of disillusionment, apathy and abdication of franchise. The U.S. is the so-called beacon of democracy. Yet the two political extremes have become…

Trudeau’s infrastructure announcement raises red flags

Every dollar spent on white elephant vanity projects reduces the money that could be spent on schools, hospitals

Trudeau’s infrastructure announcement raises red flagsIf a door-to-door salesman pitched you on a “win-win” sale, your first reaction would probably be skepticism. Unfortunately, a similar level of skepticism is called for whenever a politician declares their latest spending project to be a “win-win.” That’s exactly what Prime Minister Justin Trudeau affirmed was the case when he announced that the “independent”…

Canada doesn’t need Mark Carney’s divisive advice

Canada doesn’t need Mark Carney’s divisive adviceCanadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has brought in economist Mark Carney as an adviser to assist with mapping out the government’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The CBC reported how Carney left his position as governor of the Bank of England “after guiding it through Brexit uncertainty.” But it seems the media is as clueless…

COVID-19 and scientific fallibility

The pandemic has underlined that we should neither disregard nor worship uncritically at the altar of science

COVID-19 and scientific fallibilityIn addition to upending 21st century normalcy, the COVID-19 pandemic has shone the light on science itself. Just how reliable is it? It’s an interesting question. First, though, let me be open about my default settings. I’m generally very big on medical science, believing that without it I mightn’t be alive today. Ireland, where I…

COVID-19 shows modern politics lacks common sense

Placing trust in the public has become an alien idea. Our governments have become too large and self-serving

COVID-19 shows modern politics lacks common senseIf there is one thing the COVID-19 pandemic has taught us – and it has taught us many things – it’s that partisan politics has completely taken hold of public discourse and, in effect, banned common sense. This truth was made most clear in early May when United Kingdom Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced the…
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