Scott Vrooman for Senate

Following Canadian news can be a challenge and a half. Mainstream sources are easy to find, but about as reliable as a gauze condom. Alternative sources are a chore. Sometimes it takes a comedian to make sense of Canadian politics. Read the rest of this entry

On Canadian Atheist: What do Canadians think about publishing images of Muhammad?

Shortly after the murders of the Charlie Hebdo cartoonists, the Angus Reid Institute conducted a survey to see how Canadians felt about the balance between freedom of expression and religious sensitivity. The results were uplifting. Canada is often stereotyped as a country full of people who don’t want to step on anyone’s toes. It’s refreshing to see that we do recognize that some things are more important that protecting religious egos. For more details, check out the post on Canadian Atheist.

The stories we don’t hear: Michael Harris’s talk

I consider myself fairly non-partisan, politically. I’d vote for any party with a platform that was rational. There is no such thing in Canadian politics, of course, so I am forced to vote for the party with the least irrational platform, but I hold no strong attachment or animosity to any particular political party. All parties disappoint me to some degree or another. Nevertheless, it seems I am finding myself more and more viscerally disgusted with the Conservative Party of Canada – and in particular, Stephen Harper – the more information I discover about them. Read the rest of this entry

Voting for pizza: electoral reform illustrated

So electoral reform is on my mind again – no, not for that reason, but because the next federal election is coming up. Last year I wrote a post for Canadian Atheist about electoral reform, and I was shocked and horrified to discover how little most Canadians know about the issue. My goal this year is to shine a little more light on it. Read the rest of this entry

How right-wing bigots are ruining science fiction

I’m a huge science fiction fan – science fiction, please, hold the fantasy – and have been for as long as I can remember. One of the biggest events of the year for me is the Hugo Awards; for me, they’re bigger than the Oscars. I’m subscribed to get announcements of major Hugo Award news, and – as a kind of yearly tradition I have – I was thrilled to hear that the 2015 nominees were announced. But… there was something fishy about the nominations. Read the rest of this entry

On Canadian Atheist: Angus Reid survey on religious identity, beliefs, and attitudes in Canada

The Angus Reid Institute conducted a fairly comprehensive survey, commissioned by Reginald Bibby, of religious identification, beliefs, and attitudes in Canada. Much of the results won’t be surprising to anyone who reads atheist blogs, but the survey did suggest that while nonbelievers are not considered to be representative of mainstream Canada, mainstream Canada’s attitudes and opinions are more inline with nonbelievers than with believers. For more details, checo out the post on Canadian Atheist.

I make public domain ebooks

It occurs to me that I’ve never mentioned this here, but I make public domain ebooks. I take public domain texts, mark them up using modern, semantic technologies, package them as EPUB ebooks, then release them back into the public domain. Read the rest of this entry

Feminist is not what I am, it is what I aspire to

There’s a post up at Brute Reason that I think every male feminist should read. The title is “The Importance of Self-Awareness for Men in Feminism”; a fine title, though it grossly understates the conceptual scope of the post. Read the rest of this entry

Entering the public domain in Canada in 2015

There’s been a lot in the news recently that’s depressing, to say the least. I’ve kept up with covering it, but I really need a break to blog about something a little more positive. So, here’s 2015’s version of last year’s post on what’s entering the public domain in Canada this year. Read the rest of this entry

On Canadian Atheist: The Canadian English-language news media has betrayed Charlie Hebdo, again

In the wake of the Charlie Hebdo shooting, news media has been predictably flooded with details of what happened, and why. What’s been noticeably missing from virtually all English-speaking media, however, are any images of Charile Hebdo cartoons that feature Muhammad. CBC News, for example, showed highly blasphemous cartoons skewering Jesus and the Pope, but blurred out even the most benign image of Muhammad. This shouldn’t come as a surprise however; English-speaking media has always been shockingly cowardly when it comes to this issue, and part of the reason Charlie Hebdo was targeted can be traced back to their cowardice. For more details, checo out the post on Canadian Atheist.