Wednesday Night #2007

Written by  //  September 2, 2020  //  News about Wednesday Nighters, Wednesday Nights  //  No comments

Seventy-five years ago, on September 2, 1945 aboard the USS Missouri in Tokyo Bay, Japan formally surrendered to the Allies, bringing an end to World War II.

We continue to follow news of Lebanon avidly and John Buchanan supplements our feed. Of greatest interest to friends of John and Joumane is the story from The Sunday Times
Beirut asks the question: is it really worth rebuilding? as Joumane appears in an opening segment of the video. We are delighted to see that she is her usual articulate self.

In other news of Wednesday Nighters:
Michael Judson, is now CEO of Record Gold Corp, which explains why we have not seen him lately (with or without Zoom). We look forward to updates.
Hosein Maleki writes that he is presenting a paper at the conference on Political Economy of Finance 2020: Should Corporations Have a Social Purpose?. The paper discusses Conservative TV and Corporate Social Responsibility (with Mahsa Kaviani and Lily Li). Hosein and Mahsa have moved on from Temple. He is now at Florida State University (Tallahassee) and she is with the University of Delaware.
The next generation is taking flight: Noah and Seamus Matthews, sons of Kyle and Céline Cooper, are more articulate than many adults debating the pros and cons of school openings. Kids from kindergarten to high school share how they feel about their return to school

Which offers us a convenient segue to Covid-19
The Globe & Mail editorial board cautions: To reopen schools safely, governments need to be ready to close them, too
From one of our favorite authoritative sources,
We Can Solve the Coronavirus-Test Mess Now—If We Want To
The key to taming the pandemic will be both a new commitment to “assurance testing” and a new vision of what public health really means.
The Munk Debates podcast: Swedish Model
Be it resolved, Sweden is the model for how to fight this pandemic and the next.
Guests: Jonas F. Ludvigsson and Lena Einhorn

The news that the Statue of Canada’s first prime minister toppled by protesters demanding police defunding has unfortunately spread internationally while opinion at home is sharply divided over whether monuments to flawed historical figures (which historical figure is not flawed?) should exist. A welcome voice of reason is history teacher J.D.M. Stewart who writes in the Globe & Mail “Canada’s continuing work toward reconciliation with Indigenous peoples, as well as the systemic racism and violence in all its forms that has been a part of the lived experience of many Canadians, are the issues of our times. But defacing and vandalizing statues of a former prime minister is not going to advance any of those causes. Nor is it justified by history – although it may make some feel better.” When we debate complex legacies such as Sir John A.’s, we must not be ahistorical. Michelle Lalonde makes the point that some educators see it as a golden opportunity to rethink how history is taught.
We know that Wednesday Nighters do not all agree about this event, so look forward to hearing from Andrew Caddell and Doug Sweet among others.
Andrew’s initial comments on Facebook provoked much un-civil discourse, including personal attacks, which led him to muse in this week’s Hill Times column Facebook is no longer fun and games about the good, bad and ugly of social media’s evolution “there are many voices which skew the debate on social media.“, along with the trolls and bots. The issue is not limited to Trump twitter, but extends around the world and there are no obvious solutions.

Shall we all watch for (Canadian) social media reaction to Wednesday’s announcement that Trudeau defends Payette, says he is not considering replacing GG ‘right now’, and the Privy Council Office already has launched an external review of working conditions at Rideau Hall – the contract is valued at more than $88,000 and the review’s results are expected later this fall. Then what?

In local news, the ridiculous two-bike-lane project on Terrebonne Avenue has been recalled, a victory for the residents and their neighbours.
We wish that Mayor Plante -and fellow mayors across the country- would take inspiration from what has been done in Finland where, guided by the principle that housing is a human right and sensible, compassionate policies are quickly eradicating homelessness.

For those following the Navalnyi poisoning, Novichok nerve agent used in Alexey Navalny poisoning, says German government
An astute European friend of Wednesday Night comments:
“As this poison has not until now been available to others than Russian government agencies, this casts [doubt] that Putin was not behind this. Now it looks as if he was. However, there still is the possibility that some other operator has got one of the official services to do the job without consulting Putin. Best to wait until the BND has done their job.”

While we are all looking the other way:
Gwynne Dyer: Greece tries to keep Erdogan at bay
The quarrel between Greece and Turkey is mainly about control over the waters and seabed of the Aegean Sea that separates them. … Since last year, Turkish seismic exploration and drilling ships, escorted by warships, have been searching for gas in waters off Crete and Cyprus that no other country in the world regards as Turkish. In reply, French and Italian warships and fighter aircraft from the United Arab Emirates have taken part in joint exercises with Greek and Cypriot forces.
The European Union has given Turkey until late September to stop its “illegal activities” in the eastern Mediterranean, after which sanctions may be imposed. And last Thursday Greece declared that it was going to extend its territorial waters in the Ionian Sea from six nautical miles to the maximum permitted twelve miles.

Of course, the dominant topic is -and will be for the next nine weeks- the US election campaign and the violence encouraged by Trump and his administration in a desperate attempt to deflect attention from the bad news surrounding their mismanagement of the Covoid pandemic.
In their weekly Diplomatic Community discussion, Jeremy Kinsman and Larry Haas look at what Trump may or may not do on the international scene vis à vis China, other countries, and what, if any, actions  may affect Canada. Both Jeremy and Larry Haas foresee further prolongation of the recently extended border closures.

Once again, for balanced round-ups of US daily political news and thoughtful, substantive, commentary, I cannot recommend more highly Heather Cox Richardson’s daily newsletter Letters from an American.

Finally, Donna Logan called our attention to this from the New York Times Trump Books Keep Coming, and Readers Can’t Stop Buying – White House memoirs, journalistic exposés, full-throated defenses of the president: Publishers are producing books for every partisan and wondering if the gravy train ends on Election Day. She adds: “Trump has at least one success he can boast about but likely won’t. He has been good for book sellers. The same could be said of television ratings and often when I am watching CNN and MSNBC, I think to myself that the guys in the business office must be rooting for Trump because they know ratings are going to go down if he loses!”

This is not only inconvenient, it is scary, but we will persevere!
Zoom is now critical infrastructure. That’s a concern
It’s a cybersecurity vulnerability that would have been unimaginable as recently as last year: A single California-based company, Zoom, is now the foundation for education access from elementary school up through graduate school. It has also become a critical tool for many businesses. When Zoom goes down, teachers can’t teach, students can’t learn, and business meetings, conferences, and webinars grind to a halt.

Leave a Comment

comm comm comm