Is Kevin O’Leary the Nowhere Man today’s politics craves?

They come out of nowhere sometimes, but few come out as late in life as Bernie Sanders, the senior (age-wise, at 75) junior senator from Vermont who took a run at being the Democrats’ presidential candidate.
Now he is everywhere.
One minute he is on CNN talking about those pesky Russians allegedly interfering with the presidential election, and the next he is on CBS’s Face the Nation, talking about, well, those pesky Russians allegedly interfering with the presidential election.
Not that long ago, however, he was as much a political unknown to Americans as a one-time Alaskan governor named Sarah Palin who, as we all now know, could see those pesky Russkies from her backyard.
Here in Canada, we have few such characters. While we are large in planetary mass, we are small in numbers, and it is therefore rare when someone suddenly appears in the spotlight and dances well …
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It’s time to teach money grubbing politicians a lesson

The most controversial money grabs unfolding right now in Canadian politics are being done without the people’s permission. It’s wrong and it has to change.
In Alberta, thousands of regular people are protesting an incoming carbon tax that will undeniably increase their cost of living.
NDP Premier Rachel Notley got into office in the spring of 2015. She never campaigned on introducing the carbon tax. Yet only months later, that November, Notley rolled out a major policy that’ll have a very real impact on Albertans and their entire provincial economy.
Similarly, Ontario voters had no say in whether or not the forthcoming cap-and-trade would be implemented in their province. It wasn’t a part of Premier Kathleen Wynne’s platform.
Nor have Ontarians had a direct say in the various green scheme deals that have been implemented over the past decade, which have been the primary cause of …
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George Pyle: After fake news wins the day, Knowledge People look to Canada, California for sanctuary

Like Sherlock Holmes noting the significance of the dog that didn’t bark, Jason Chaffetz may, or may not, hope that we notice the award he was not nominated for. This year.
Near the close of 2015, an embarrassingly misleading chart that had been held up by the congressman from Utah’s 3rd District was a finalist for the more serious version of Esquire’s Dubious Achievement Award, PolitiFact’s Lie of the Year.
That was Chaffetz’s clumsy attempt to play gotcha with the head of Planned Parenthood by basically lying about how many abortions it was performing contrasted with how many cancer screenings it had provided.

In the national, though highly unscientific, survey conducted by the Pulitzer-winning PolitiFact, Chaffetz’s fib placed a distant fourth. Behind Donald Trump (American Muslims cheered 9/11). And Donald Trump (81 percent of white murder victims are killed by black people). Aaaaaand Donald Trump (The Mexican government sends criminals to the United …
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‘Trump bump’ spikes many Americans’ interest in Canada

They’re calling it the “Trump bump” that led to a significant increase in Americans seeking refugee status and seeking information about moving to Canada.There has also been a huge spike in online traffic from the U.S. of more than 200,000 users that crashed Canada’s citizenship and immigration website prior to the election.As well, Canadian jobs, real estate and even dating sites have had significant jumps.Some dating services suggest that perhaps a quicker way to immigrate to Canada is to marry a Canadian.It’s not so easy to be approved as a refugee coming from a democratic country such as the U.S.Even so, refugee claims from Americans amounted to 170 in the past 11 months compared with 73 a year earlier.It’s not unusual with political changes and concerns, said Toronto immigration attorney Mario Bellissimo.“I saw some of this when Bush assumed office (in 2000),” …
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Local politicans travel to Ottawa for Columbia River Treaty discussions

It’s kind of like a giant poker game.
Before the U.S. and Canadian governments can sit down to renegotiate the Columbia River Treaty in the coming years, they’ll have to do multi-faceted preparations with a variety of different provincial, regional, federal and First Nations groups, juggling conflicting priorities and taking stock of who’s holding what cards.
And it could go a whole variety of ways, especially now that the U.S. has elected Donald Trump.
“There is no road map for this process,” Nelson cultural ambassador Eileen Delehanty Pearkes, author of A River Captured: The Columbia River and Catastrophic Change, told the Star.
“It could go on for years and years.”
At its most basic, the CRT is an agreement between countries in which the U.S. compensates Canada for the privilege of damming the river north of the border to provide flood control in the …
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Patty Hajdu, Status Of Women Minister, Spent $1.1-Million On Office Renovation

OTTAWA — Status of Women Minister Patty Hajdu approved a $1.1-million price tag to build a new suite of offices for herself and her staff earlier this year, even though she was told the cost might raise some eyebrows.Hajdu wanted her new office to be in the same building as the rest of the agency — located at 22 Eddy St. in Gatineau, Que., according to documents obtained by The Canadian Press through the Access to Information Act.Those documents also show that senior management fast-tracked the expensive renovation project to get her there, even before knowing how they would pay for it.Before Prime Minister Justin Trudeau appointed a full-time status of women minister — part of his commitment to gender equality around the cabinet table — there had been no need for an office of that size in the building.Minister of Status of Women Patty Hajdu stands in the House of …
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Rebuilding Ottawa: an overdue political metaphor or party planning?: Delacourt

Many times over the past year, I have been tempted to apologize to tourists visiting Canada’s capital.

The downtown area around Parliament Hill is a mess of construction and closed streets. A giant sinkhole that opened at the corner of Rideau and Sussex just before Canada Day seemed a fitting symbol for 2016: the year of getting around dangerously in Ottawa.

Within one block or so of that sinkhole (now fixed) several massive renovation projects were under way in the past year, and many of them promise to linger into Canada’s 150th birthday year, 2017, or even beyond. They include:

• Excavation of streets and construction of transit stops to make way for light-rail transit, all along the routes just in front of Parliament Hill.

• Major transformation projects at the West Block and the Government Conference Centre, to create temporary new homes for the House of Commons and the Senate.

• A …
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Caravan giant Parkdean sold to Canadian Onex for £1.35bn 

Senior managers at Britain’s largest caravan park operator will share a £70m windfall after the company was sold to a Canadian private equity house. 
Britain’s biggest holiday parks business Parkdean Resorts sold to the Toronto-based Onex Corporation for £1.35bn amid rising demand for UK-based “staycations” after sterling’s slump. The managers owned a minority stake in the business.  
The private equity firm agreed to purchase the camping and caravan specialists in a deal that hands ownership and operation of 73 holiday parks across England, Scotland and Wales to the Canadian business. 
Parkdean Resorts owners Alchemy and Epiris, formerly Electra, previously shelved plans …
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Snowfall and extreme cold warnings across Canada this weekend

Winter is making its presence known across Canada this weekend, with many areas of the country under extreme cold or snowfall warnings.
In B.C., up to 20 centimetres of snow is expected for parts of the Central Coast in the coming days, with 10 to 15 centimetres expected along much of the south West Coast and inland areas.
Homeless advocates all over the province urged officials to provide more help, from blankets to warming shelters.
And cold temperatures have frozen ponds and lakes in the Vancouver area that have not seen skaters in years.

Another couple heads out onto Trout Lake despite …
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