Globalization

  • Lest We Forget Lebanon

    Despite historic pacts between Israel and its Arab neighbours, Middle East peace remains a chimera if Lebanon is left behind, Susan Korah writes.

    World media attention has shifted from the horrific explosion in Beirut on August 4 to the historic Abraham Accord that is normalizing relations between some Arab states and Israel.

    But speakers at a recent webinar on the region stressed the importan...

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  • Unmasking the Benefits of Globalization

    COVID-19 has sparked calls to recover domestic production of goods from pharmaceuticals to personal protective equipment. Raising a contrary voice, Matthew Lau argues for recognizing globalization as the good that comes from economic interconnection.

    There has been, as Sean Speer noted recently in the National Post, a broad consensus in most countries on the benefits of globalization – th...

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  • Am I My Brother’s Keeper?

    Matthew Kaemingk, recently named Hamilton-based Redeemer University College’s 2019 Emerging Intellectual, challenges Christians to defend the religious freedom of all faiths as they do their own. 

    Christians are really good at defending their own religious freedoms. When it comes to other faith traditions, however, Christians often seem quite ill-prepared to defend the religious freedoms of non-Christians. 

    This discrepancy was one of two key ...

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  • Division and Hope

    On the feast of Pope St. John Paul II, we need to heed his messages of hope, courage and conviviality in the aftermath of a divisive election, writes Convivium's Rebecca Darwent.

    A country divided in blue, red, orange, turquoise and a splash of green. The top-two parties’ popular vote divided with a margin of a mere 1.4 per cent, other ballots cast towards a split up of three other parties, radically different and yet, unequivocally...

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  • The Rooted Wanderer

    The advent of digital nomadism, Josh Nadeau writes from experience, opens the door to home becoming pilgrimage, and roots becoming spirit to stretch instead of matter that restrains. 

    When one speaks of the omnipresent Millennial, a number of well-formed stereotypes come to mind. You have your vinyl-laden cultural connoisseurs, for example, or your selfie mavens (complete with seasonal latte) or experts in ‘90s nostalgia. While it’s ulti...

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  • Beaming At The Vatican

    Editor in Chief Father Raymond J. de Souza reports on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's recent visit to the Vatican, delivering an insightful reflection on judgement, truth, and values. 

    Three weeks ago, Justin Trudeau knelt in the Sistine Chapel before The Last Judgement, Michelangelo’s depiction of the Risen Christ returning in awesome glory to render final judgement upon the saints and the damned. It is both sobering and salutar...

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  • Emptied Out of Egypt

    Convivium Editor in Chief Father Raymond J. de Souza reflects on the significance of Pope Francis and Bartholomew, Patriarch of Constantinople, addressing a peace conference hosted by the Al-Azhar mosque in Egypt tomorrow. 

    On Friday, Pope Francis and Bartholomew, Patriarch of Constantinople, will be together in Cairo to address a peace conference hosted by the Al-Azhar mosque and university, sometimes called the “Vatican” of the Sunni Muslim world. For the leadership of globa...

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  • Revenge Is Sour

    Father Tim McCauley points readers towards the necessity of recovering an approach towards politics which prizes perspective over personality. 

    Hate is in vogue.  During the latest American election campaign, it was an entirely acceptable position, among certain conservative Republicans, to hate Hillary Clinton. Now it is not only commonplace but perhaps even expected among certain liberal Democrat...

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  • True Patriot Love

    On this fourth of July, our American friends are celebrating 237 years of their founding fathers declaration of independence from the "tyranny of repeated injuries and usurptions" that King George III had imposed on the colonies, declaring that "they are also absolved from all allegiance to the British Crown." As a loyal subject of Elizabeth II, Queen of Canada, (we share her with 15 other countries including Great Britian), I suppose the red, white, and blue bunting that decorates the parades, fireworks, and concerts south of the 49th today should provoke resentment but this isn't the case.

    I will confess to being among the 86% of Albertans who experience "an upwelling of emotion when singing" the Canadian national anthem...

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  • A Quiet Battle in an Echo-ocracy

    "Help is needed to support a young girl who was recently rescued from human traffickers. She was bought and sold into the sex trade for nine years. Now she is free. She needs food, clothing, shelter, medicine, counseling, and rehabilitation. We would also like to provide her, when she is ready, funds for education courses to help her restore her life.

    As Ottawa's echo-ocracy worked itself into stage five incoherence over a backbench MP's motion on sex-selection abortion, the following words quietly appeared on another MP's website:

    "Help is needed to support a young girl who was recently ...

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  • The Peril of Christian Humanitarianism

    In many ways, it is neither wrong nor entirely mystifying why one religious group would draw attention to the abuses or suffering of their co-religionists. Christian groups draw attention to the suffering of other Christians in part because they are often more naturally familiar with these groups, as a result of global networks, but also because there is an implicit self-identification with the victimized.

    It is only just beginning to come to light that one of the most powerful forces for global good can be the formal and informal networks of faith-based and religious organizations. These are the people that are, in the words of CBC correspondent Brian Stewar...

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  • When Yoga Chases out the Blue Collars

    Almost everything he says, of course, turns out to have the predictable burble and sulphur of the primeval class-warrior. You can tell and smell it from three blocks away. There's no normal need to move in for exact identification. "The (condo) boom is gobbling up land almost as fast as it sucks up mortgage debt.

    Jim Stanford sports an economist's badge on his white-collar shirt front, yet works for the Canadian Auto Workers. This combination gets him punditry gigs on CBC and in the Globe and Mail.

    Almos...

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  • Quinoa Strikes Help No One

    The newest food for fret is quinoa. The Guardian warns, "There is an unpalatable truth to face for those of us with a bag of quinoa in the larder." The article continues, "The appetite of countries such as ours for this grain has pushed up prices to such an extent that poorer people in Peru and Bolivia, for whom it was once a nourishing staple food, can no longer afford to eat it."

    Fretting is the hot new side dish, but it's not healthy. I'm sure there are many in wealthy North America who eat their oatmeal every morning blissfully unaware of the controversies around whether their porridge is fair-trade, organic, local, steel cut or m...

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  • Needed for Rebooting Conservative Aid Policy: Less Fox, More Foxes

    During the Cold War, the party of Eisenhower, Richard Nixon, and Reagan was strongly anticommunist, but these presidents took foreign policy seriously and executed their grand strategies with a healthy degree of tactical flexibility. Since 9/11, however, Republicans have known only one big thing—the "global war on terror"—and have remained stubbornly committed to a narrow militarized approach.

    "The fox knows many things, but the hedgehog knows one big thing" -Archilochus

    American foreign policy rock star Dan Drezner ...

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  • Window Taps

    This is especially so later in the evenings around Christmas when the white noise of the city softens and the temperature falls. Then, the smack of sticks on ice and the ricochet of frozen rubber discs zipping off the boards rattle around my brain like flash card memories of high school girlfriends that—unsolicited and about which we may not speak—refuse to disappear from the subconscious.

    Sometimes when it's quiet the sounds from the outdoor rink over by the Catholic school carry across the snow after dark and tap on the window outside my bedroom.

    This is especially so later in the evenings around Christmas when the white noise of the...

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  • Who's Serving Whom?

    For instance, Canada's women recently lost their Olympic semi-final football (soccer) match to the USA (4-3 after extra time), due in large part to a couple of quaintly creative decisions by Norwegian referee Christiana Pedersen. My initial reaction to this was that Canada should scramble the CF-18s pronto and launch an invasion of Norway or at the very least make some bold incursions into its airspace as an expression of outrage. Given the sense of injustice I was feeling at the time, this felt like a moderate approach. What did inspire, however, are some thoughts about service that were prompted by the fact Canada's team contained one dual Canadian-American citizen, Chelsea Stewart, while the American team contained another, Sydney Leroux. This is not unusual. Canadians have for years played hockey and other sports for foreign countries and as we are all aware, Team USA swimmer and gold medalist Missy Franklin is also a Canadian citizen with Canadian parents. I don't think these matters should be controversial, particularly in the case of Franklin who was born and raised in the USA and always dreamed of representing the land of her birth; the nation that nurtured her.

    The beautiful game, as it is known, can inspire some frightfully ugly reactions.

    For instance, Canada's women recently lost their Olympic semi-final football (soccer) match to the USA (4-3 after extra time), due in large part to a couple of quaintly ...

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  • America Is Not The Greatest

    Aaron Sorkin is an Academy and Emmy award-winning American screenwriter, producer, and playwright, whose works include A Few Good Men, The American President, The West Wing, Sports Night, Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip, Charlie Wilson's War, The Social Network, and Moneyball. He has presided over some of the greatest moments in TV and he did it again recently in the opening episode of The Newsroom.

    "Why is America the greatest country in the world?" a coed asks the assembled media pundits on season opener of HBO's The Newsroom.

    Aaron Sorkin is an Academy and Emmy award-winning American screenwriter, producer, and playwright, whose works ...

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  • The Race to the Top

    Take, for instance, the Canadian Auto Workers Union. Yesterday, the CAW launched a major paper entitled "Re-thinking Canada's Auto Industry: A Policy Vision to Escape the Race to the Bottom." The report outlines policy recommendations including "buy Canadian" measures, direct government investment in the auto industry, Central Bank tampering with monetary policy to lower the Canadian dollar and encourage exports, and a host of other measures intended to "protect Canada's share of this industry." The first community whose head gets stepped on is workers in developing economies.

    The race to the bottom is a full-contact sport full of cheap hits and thuggery. The thugs, however, are not always easy to spot.

    Take, for instance, the Canadian Auto Workers Union. Yesterday, the CAW launched a major paper entitled "...

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  • The Games of Yanks and Canucks

    Not long ago I was enjoying an evening meal with the monks at St. Gregory's in Three Rivers, Michigan, and the text being read for the evening was a cultural history of the Cold War as told through Monopoly. Over their spartan supper, I learned that Monopoly has become one of the most powerful, influential games in the world. The concomitant rise of its narrative, competitive capitalism, has mirrored American cultural and political ascent. It is a game predicated on the fictions of level playing fields, impartial chance, limited intervention, and the ingenuity of market competition. Victory in Monopoly also spells disaster for capitalism, an ironic tension that now seems to be eternally nestled in the American psyche.

    If there are two cultural artifacts that showcase the distinctives between Americans and Canadians, it is surely these two board games: Monopoly and Poleconomy. What the devil is Pole...

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  • Hidden Costs of Prosperity

    Mr. Crowley proposes a planned disintegration of North American borders in favour of integration of economies. To wit:

    Brian Lee Crowley's piece in yesterday's Financial Post is the most provocative piece I have read in some time. It not only contains one of the most open challenges to Can...

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  • White Bread Liberalism is Stale

    The city of Gatineau—best known for hosting Canada's Museum of Civilization and a host of public servants—has recently released a "values guide" for new immigrants. The guide is a veritable smorgasbord of helpful advice for new immigrants to ensure that they assimilate—sorry, transition—into Canadian society. On the one hand it's hard to dismiss outright the idea of such a document. I would like to know the various traditions and practices of the city I'm moving to too. It's hospitable.

    Things like this give liberalism a bad name.

    The city of Gatineau—best known for hosting Canada's Museum of Civilization and a host of public servants—has recently released a ...

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  • New Economies, Strange Christendoms

    The former statement has become commonplace in discussions about the world's economy. While the U.S. and Europe begin to experience the full weight of fiscal irresponsibility, and their national limbs strain to hold up the ever-increasing weight of debt, Brazil has sprung out of the global recession and appears poised to continue to grow as an economic power. The effects of this economic growth influences Brazil's social life in other ways as well. National Geographic recently featured an article describing the increasing sense of empowerment brought on by economic growth, going so far as to describe this new phenomenon as Machisma.

    Business is booming in Brazil. So is Christianity. What does the latter mean for the former, and vice-versa?

    The former statement has become commonplace in discussions about the world's economy. While the U.S. and Europe begin to experience the full ...

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  • Learning to love the long revision

    This is probably good advice for someone. It was bad advice for me. First, I have a job. Second, the concern about getting bogged down in a PhD for years doesn't apply to me. I grew up in a post-war Dutch immigrant home: missing deadlines is a sin second only to consumer debt.

    When I started my doctorate I was given two bad pieces of advice. First, check the job market to be sure you can find work. Second, focus and finish the damn thing before it finishes you. The only good dissertation, is a finished dissertation.

    This i...

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  • Tut Holland!

    When North Americans do think about the Netherlands, it's usually in favourable terms. The Netherlands is considered a bastion of progress. After all, the Netherlands was home to the great humanist Erasmus, and not a few of the godfathers of the Enlightenment, for instance René Descartes and Baruch Spinoza for instance. Back in the day, Holland was the place to escape from religious persecution and enjoy the tranquility of order which comes from a robust conception of religious freedom.

    The Netherlands does not get a lot of media play in Canada. Save for improbable World Cup runs where the orange adopt an almost Canadian approach to soccer (complete with bone-crushing body checks), Holland quietly ...

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