Wednesday Night #1797

Written by  //  August 10, 2016  //  Wednesday Nights  //  No comments

Please note that the abnormally hot temperatures have driven PM Trudeau to go shirtless to the shock of columnist Barbara Kay (How dignity lost its shirt in high office) – if that is the gravest of our worries, we are indeed fortunate.

Brexit, terrorist attack in Pakistan,  Brazil’s political drama, ditto Turkey including rapprochement with Putin, humbling of the ANC in South Africa,  the circus of the US presidential campaign and now the Rio Olympics – and those are just the major non-Canadian headlines.

Brexit: Theresa May confirms to Danish and Dutch counterparts that UK won’t trigger Article 50 until next year

PA reports that UK Prime Minister Theresa May has confirmed to her Danish and Dutch counterparts that the UK will not invoke Article 50 of the EU Treaties – the formal process for leaving the EU – until 2017 to allow all member states to prepare for the negotiations. Meanwhile, London Mayor Sadiq Khan has suggested that the Article 50 process should not begin until after the French and German elections, to allow the respective governments more “latitude” particularly on the issues of single market access and free movement. He told Sky News, “If we serve notice too quick to quit, there’s no guarantee jobs won’t leave…At the moment, businesses aren’t leaving. At the moment, they have hope – they are being reassured by myself and others that we have a plan in relation to getting the best deal possible.”
Separately, Finnish Finance Minister Petteri Orpo told Bloomberg in a phone interview, “The risk I see is that we can’t find solutions between Britain and the rest of the 27 EU countries and that the question [of UK-EU relations after Brexit] will remain open. That will create uncertainty for the euro area for a long time and pose a bigger risk to the growth of the area and Finland.”
So there’s obviously time to maneuver.
If you are still confused, we highly recommend the brilliant  Yes Minister reprise Yes Minister Brexit special – Sir Humphrey explains all More on Brexit

Another horrendous terrorist attack – this time suicide attack on a hospital in Quetta, Pakistan. Quite rightly, the social media audience is asking Where are the hashtags for the Pakistan hospital attack? Lack of response to bombing criticised on Twitter

Brazil’s political drama plays out (Brazil Senate votes for Rousseff impeachment trial)  in the background of what appear to be (against all odds) a successful and relatively trouble-free Olympics. We admit it, we were hooked by the Opening Ceremony (Rio’s Olympic opening ceremony was as diverse and divided as Brazil is right now )  and remain dazzled by the incredible feats performed by the (mostly) exceptionally attractive and talented athletes. And who could resist the flag bearer from Tonga, whose gleaming torso was due to a generous slathering of coconut oil  (we are informed by an impeccable source)?
Turkey & Russia, or at least Erdogan and Putin (good analysis from Bloomberg of who got what from whom)  appear to have made up – all that is missing from this jolly pairing is the portrait of The Donald.

Which brings us to the political circus aka the US presidential campaign. Just when we think Donald Trump has reached the depths, he simply gets awfuller (Donald Trump Suggests ‘Second Amendment People’ Could Act Against Hillary Clinton).  You will find much more on our election campaign pages. Meanwhile, we suggest a good dose of John Oliver on RNC Convention, Destroys Newt Gingrich and Donald Trump .

With so much focused on the U.S., there has been little recognition of the importance of the South African election results. South Africa has broken the post-colonial narrative. It’s a thrilling turning point

Montreal is hosting the World Social Forum this week

Myron Frankman informs us that all are welcome to attend an award presentation and expert discussion on: “From Global to Local: The Importance of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples to Reconciliation in Canada”
The World Federalist Movement – Canada’s 2016 World Peace Award honours Senator Murray Sinclair, former Chairperson of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada.
Remarks by Senator Sinclair, will be followed by expert respondents  and audience discussion.
Date: 11 August 2016
Time: 6:00 to 8:30 pm
Location: McGill University Faculty of Law, Moot Court Room, 3660 Peel St., room 100, Montreal.

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