History

Canadian Healthcare: Creeping Privatization

Canadian Healthcare: Creeping Privatization

February 1, 2023 at 12:08 pm

Last week,  in Part I of my article on Canada’s healthcare system, I cited the Canadian Encyclopedia entry on “health policy” written by the late Toronto Star medical reporter Marilyn E. Dunlop. In my initial draft, I noted that the Canadian Encyclopedia is kind of wacky (see the “David Dingwall”Read More

Cartoon of the MacCormack family's backyard rink by Jack McCann

Rooted in Whitney Pier

February 1, 2023 at 12:06 pm

The year before I started school in 1960, there was a field at the bottom of Matilda Street in Sydney with a path that led to the back door of an old house on the next street over, Dominion. One of my earliest memories is of escaping the backyard ofRead More

The Sound of War

The Sound of War

February 1, 2023 at 12:04 pm

If the dull roar of a nuclear warhead ever mutates to a deafening and life-ending roar of a nuclear explosion, humanity will be extinguished. Tom Unterrainer, END Info 30, Bertrand Russel Peace Foundation, March 2022   In 1935, retired US Marine Major General Smedley D. Butler (1880-1941), a veteran ofRead More

From Commanders to Campaigners (Part I)

From Commanders to Campaigners (Part I)

January 11, 2023 at 11:49 am

Author’s Note: On 3 May 2019, a Thanksgiving Service was held in Westminster Abbey, attended by senior members of the Government and Royal Family, to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Continuous At-Sea Deterrent (CASD)—charmingly known as ‘Operation Relentless’—of the Royal Navy’s nuclear-armed submarines. As you read this, one ofRead More

From Commanders to Campaigners (Part II)

From Commanders to Campaigners (Part II)

January 11, 2023 at 11:47 am

Author’s Note: In December, I interviewed Robert Forsyth and Robert Green, who served for many years in the Belly of a Beast—the British naval nuclear war machine—they now devoutly wish to see dismantled. I’ve told their stories in a separate article and you can find my entire email exchange withRead More

A Christmas Message from the Ghost of Labor Past

A Christmas Message from the Ghost of Labor Past

December 14, 2022 at 11:49 am

Editor’s Note: What follows is one of the earliest compositions attributed to the legendary Cape Breton labor leader of a century ago, J.B. McLachlan. Published in December 1906 as a letter to the editor in the Halifax Herald, it was sent along to the Spectator by David Frank, author ofRead More

The Darkest Hour Before Detente?

The Darkest Hour Before Detente?

December 7, 2022 at 1:49 pm

“War is not the only thing that, to occur, must be waged.” —Judith Lipton and David Barash, Strength Through Peace   It now seems like a bygone age, but it was only on December 15 last year that the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs presented a draft Treaty on ‘SecurityRead More

Fast & Curious: Short Takes on Random Things

Fast & Curious: Short Takes on Random Things

December 2, 2022 at 11:05 am

Key changes I know nothing about music but, as with pretty much all subjects, I like to hear what people who do know something about it  have to say, which is why this week I’ve been following a discussion about the demise of the key change in popular music. ToRead More

Politics on the Edge: Remembering Paul MacEwan

Politics on the Edge: Remembering Paul MacEwan

November 30, 2022 at 11:45 am

In early April 1974, on an unusually pleasant morning that promised to help deliver a big voter turnout, Pat and Roy and I, young volunteers all, began working Polling Station 16 in Cape Breton Nova. The poll was at the bottom of Matilda Street in Whitney Pier, where I hadRead More

December 1984: Now We’re Arguing About the Canada Games

December 1984: Now We’re Arguing About the Canada Games

November 9, 2022 at 12:49 pm

Editor’s Note: This is Part IV of a series that will continue until I find some answers or give up, whichever comes first. You’ll find Part I here and Part II here and Part III here.   I spent my Sunday afternoon looking at microfilm at the CBU library. IRead More