Dominion Revival Party

Hello and welcome back to my blog. Our most recent project in PLP, is to think up a new political party with a group. The party my group has come up with, is the Dominion Revival Party. Our party is for the people. Our primary policy and goal is governmental reform so all Canadians have a more equal voice, and we can eliminate regional preferences. The name stems from the fact that we are trying to revive the founding principles of our dominion, one of which is representation of all people/regions.

One of our biggest policies is senate reform. This is relevant to one of my most recent posts which was about the 2021 Federal Election, in which I talk about many issues with the Senate of Canada as it is. The biggest thing that we think needs to be changed in the senate is the seat distribution. Currently BC, Alberta and Ontario are significantly underrepresented. We vow to change that. As for the appointment aspect of the senate, we do not wish for an elected senate as to not cause a battle for power and legitimacy between the two houses.

Another issue of regional representation that we would like to fix is Supreme Court appointment quotas, as by guaranteeing an overly large amount of seats to one region, you deny others their fair share, as well as potential talent a chance.

Lots of people like to use proportional representation as their buzz word for electoral reform, but we actually see the issues with it, and wish for better changes to our system. Our party believes in a maintenance of first past the post ridings as they better represent the constituents in them, and allow MPs to bring up localized issues. However, we will implement a system where all federal ridings are reviewed every five years (every census) to ensure they are fair, and redone if they have large population disparities. Also in regard to MPs representing their constituents, we believe that having a set social policy in our party is a negative, so we maintain that party politics should stay out of social policy and those matters should be proposed and voted on with freely by MPs representing their constituents rather than parties as a whole.

Our party is based on a centrist economy policy, but we do believe in responsible spending by government. Part of this, along with being more fair to all regions, is to reform the equalization payment formula, as it unnecessarily gives extra money to certain provinces when it isn’t needed, and they can cover more of their own expenses.

If you want to hear our other members takes on our policies, you can check out their blogs too. They are Alexee, Grace and Owen.

Election 2021

Image Source: National Post

Hello and welcome back to my blog. As most of you reading this post probably know, Canada has just had another federal election, and it is my task here today to write about it.

To sum up this election I would just call it wasteful, seeing as it has provided nothing to any party apart from minute regional gains for the Liberals in the west, and conservatives in the Atlantic, cancelling each-other out, with the NDP doing ever so slightly better. The Bloc Québécois saw virtually no change, and that shows that the division in Quebec isn’t going anywhere fast. This all seems to prove true what pundits were describing when they said it was a “600 million dollar Cabinet Shuffle”, but it very well could have ended differently.

Justin Trudeau could thank a lot of people for his ability to retain government after what has happened, after all, just a couple weeks ago he was polling at several points below the Conservative party, but I think that there is one man who has done more than any liberal to save the Liberals themselves this time around. That man is the leader of the People’s Party of Canada, Maxime Bernier.

Now, Bernier’s party didn’t win a single seat, and Bernier actually did quite a bit worse than last election in his own riding of Beauce, however after capitalizing off of the lack of opposition to policies like vaccine passports, he managed to grow his federal support, garnering over 5% of the popular vote federally and into the teens percentage wise in parts of the prairies. This had one crucial effect on the election, it split the right wing vote, something not seen at this level since before the Canadian Alliance and Progressive Conservative merger in 2003.

I ran through every riding using the CBC results tracker, and created a map to show just how important the split was. By adding the Conservative and PPC results together I found out that the PPC had single handedly potentially lost the conservatives 24 ridings, as their combined votes would have won that many more. Here is the map with the 24 ridings in blue that would have had different results should this little experiment have actually happened.

Taking into account the parties currently winning the aforementioned ridings as of time of writing, that would give us a conservative minority government rather than liberal. The composition in the House of Commons would look like this:

CPC: 143 (up 24 from 2021 results)

Lib: 140 (down 18)

Bloc: 33 (down 1)

NDP: 20 (down 5)

Green: 2 (same result)

Here is a juxtapose I made of the parliament seats without the vote split on the left and with it on the right. You can slide the bar in the middle to see how the results change.

As results are still coming in as of the time I am writing this, I cannot be sure things will not change, and I could have missed a riding, but this is the most comprehensive look I have seen on the topic thus far.

On a slightly different topic, another observation that can be made about these results is that the Conservative party has once again won the popular vote nation wide, like in 2019.

Senate seats by province and territory.

Another thing that has remained constant through the election, and seems like it will always be is the crazy system within the Senate of Canada. Looking back at the historical debates for confederation, you can see the senate was initially meant as appeasement towards Quebec in order to be able to implement proportional representation in the House of Commons, with a complimentary role in allowing good politicians in the country be able to serve in Parliament without worrying about being kicked out because their specific electoral division does not agree with their party or policy. On the topic of the former, it seems to have failed. On the topic of the latter, it also seems to have failed. The reason I say this is because the Quebec senate issue isn’t mainstream at all, and there are two reasons I say the other is a failure, and one is quite connected to the current administration. The first is that by basing senate seats on regions rather than population, it really just prevents regions like BC and Alberta from being able to send anywhere close to the number of politicians to the senate which represent them. This can easily be seen when you look at the fact they have around 800,000 people per senator when the Atlantic provinces are around 100,000 per senator. The second reason I eluded to earlier is that the Liberals in 2015 had a plan to bring in a non partisan senate, which would really help in theory with the local partisanship issue, but the Independent Senators Group which they brought in turned out to just be a lie. The group votes with the Liberal Government 94.5% of the time, and the government uses a Liberal party database to look at candidates for appointment. A continued liberal government, regardless if minority or majority will allow unimpeded appointment to the senate, which is partially why I brought up this topic.

In the end, this election really hasn’t changed much, but it has sent a message to both Prime Minister Trudeau and Erin O’toole, that neither of them are providing what Canadians want in order to get on board with either party and pull off a majority. 

Deep Cove and 1950s Canada

Hello and welcome back to my blog. This will be the summative post for the most recent project we have done. This project was focused on the 1950s, the history of Deep Cove, and Canadian identity. Join me, as I reflect on the work I created for this project, and how it connects to the core competencies and driving question. Also, be sure to have a listen to the podcast episode I made, embedded right below.

The driving question for this project was “How did Canadian life develop after WW2”. My thesis statement that I would use to answer this is that: The effects of the Second World War influenced Canadians of all walks of life. The effects were substantial in both economic and social nature, and lead to prosperity but also political tension with the orient.

I think that this can be supported by the various examples shown in my evidence work for the competencies shown below.

For this project, there were two main competencies. Those being “continuity and change” and “discuss, listen and speak”. Both are quite self explanatory. I will break each of them down below, and the work I did that represents them.

The first competency is continuity and change.

The first example I would like to bring up is the final podcast, which is embedded above. I think that this is a good example of continuity and change because that is basically what the focus of the episode itself is. In this episode, I go over the ways that deep cove has changed over the last 100 years, and how it had stayed the same. Rather than take the traditional route of finding an interview for this episode, I used what I think was actually a better source as a solution to the problem. Instead I used clips from an interview from 1987 conducted by the Deep Cove Heritage Society, with whom we collaborated with for this project as a whole. I think that this was a better alternative for a couple reasons. The first is that the amount of potential interviewees with relevant information to natural resources in Deep Cove is dwindling if not nearly or fully extinct as is, so this provides more first hand information. The second is that it allowed me to use more of the material provided by the Deep Cove Heritage Society, which I think they would be happy about. Please take a listen to the podcast above if you haven’t already.

The second example of continuity and change that I will bring up, is a milestone we did at the beginning of the project. For this milestone, we all conducted interviews with different prominent Deep Cove residents. I think this represents continuity and change well, as most of the topics discussed in these interviews were relevant to how the community had evolved over time, and people’s thoughts on it.

My third piece of evidence for this competency is a writing activity we had to do where we had to write a few paragraphs summing up all the things we learned to answer the driving question, which is mentioned at the start of the post. Here is what I wrote.

The next competency was “discuss, listen and speak”.

I think the biggest example of this competency is a milestone called “Canadian Connections”. For this we had to create a keynote presentation about a topic of our choice, as long as it was related to the 1950s and our podcast topic. For this presentation I focused on the 1940s-50s Alberta oil boom, and continuity and change with the industry today. I then of course, presented it to the class, which I think was quite successful in communicating most of my points, and fitting within the allotted time frame. Here is the slideshow if you’re interested.

My next examples are also presentations I did in class. The first, was a presentation we had to do about the different topics related to the Canadian Bill of Rights. My group’s presentation was about the Charter of Rights and Freedoms that came after. My slide what about the absence of property rights in the charter and the reasons for that. I think I was able to discuss these topics well with my group and present quite well.

 

Later on, we had to do another presentation. This time it was on any current event in the news. My group did ours on the unfortunate recent discovery at the former Kamloops residential school. I think that our presentation for this also went quite well.

I also think the podcast mentioned before represents this competency quite well.

All said, the importance of the change during or caused by this period in Canada’s history cannot be understated, and affect us significantly today.

Thank you for reading my post about this recent project. Hope you enjoyed.

Cans, Puzzles and the 1950s

Last week, as we slowly began to wrap up our studies of the 1950s, we delved into several of the aspects of everyday life for those at the time. As one of the activities during the week, we looked at and played examples of games and to some extent toys of the 1950s, and how children used them. Some examples of the ones we looked into were kick the can and hopscotch.

Though quite indirect, I did make somewhat of a personal connection to this as it reminded me of a baguenaudier puzzle made as a pastime for and by one of my relatives who worked in the stables in Cranbrook, BC in the early 1900s. I unfortunately don’t have a photo but I will put a very similar one below.

Image of a similar puzzle:

I think that this connects to the topic of games in the 1950s, because it embodies the primary fundamental aspects of games in both times. Those being material and/or mechanical simplicity, affordability, and being a good way to pass time. Two of these points stick out as major examples of life in the 1950s as a whole, or at least how we recognize it now, those points being the first and third one. I think that the first is relevant, because our entire interpretation of the 1950s tends to be based on the uniformity and ease of life in the period, as opposed to the more technologically advanced and sedulous modern day. The third thing mentioned earlier ties into this, as the less assiduous and advanced times of the period left much more spare time to waste, which seemingly silly games can attest to the presence of.

Thanks for reading my blog, hope you found it interesting.

A-Z in Canadian History

Recently in class last week, we had an interesting activity, where, in groups, we had to come up with one thing for each letter of the alphabet that we thought make us proud to be Canadian and that war relevant in the 1950s. This lead to lots of examples like names and government legislation in the era.

I found this activity rather enjoyable as I’m very interested in the history of Canada, as my podcast can attest to. For this reason, I thought that I should come up with my own list, but far more broadly focused on the history of Canada, and more based on importance to Canadian identity, or importance to the world rather than what would be popular. Here is the general list I came up with. Items like insulin are ones invented or made practical to use by Canadians. I’ve tried to avoid areas of bias in my examples that may have came up due to my own family’s experience and history in Canada since the 1700s.

A: Agricultural History (Because of immigrants and the World Wars)
B: British Common Law
C: Confederation
D: David Thompson
E: Étienne Cartier (Father of Confederation)
F: First Nations
G: Gold Rushes
H: Hudson Bay Company
I: Insulin
J: John A. MacDonald
K: Kerosene
L: Laurier (Prime Minister)
M: MackenZie King (Prime Minister)
N: Northwest Passage
O: Ottawa
P: Protestantism
Q: Queen Victoria & Elizabeth
R: Rebellions of 1837–1838 and Responsible Government which resulted from them.
S: St. Lawrence River
T: Tommy Douglas
U: Uranium (Mining and development of nuclear technology)
V: Vancouver (explorer)
W: World Wars
X: Camp X (Covert military training facility)
Y: Yukon
Z: /Zed/ (pronunciation)

I ran into several possibilities for several of the letters, so I had to cut some things out. I think that that list gave a very well rounded sample of important people, places, inventions etc from all eras of Canadian history, and all areas of Canada.

One thing I noticed that was consistent with the in class activity was the dropping of many historical names, which I think reflects the importance of certain individual, but also people’s strong interest and admiration for leaders in key periods.

After writing the list, one interesting thing I’ve seen lacking in my own is examples from the 1950s, which was the topic of the original activity, and I’m not quite sure the reason.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this post and look into historically important things to Canada, and connecting it to my learning in class for the last week.

Change and the Storybook Land Canal Boats

Over the course of the last month, we’ve focused on two main topics. Continuity and change, and how they relate to post WW2 Canada and the world. Last week we had a look at an exceptional example of such. That being the rise of Disney, and what it represented to America and the world.

In this process of looking at such, we had an activity. This was to look into a certain Disneyland attraction, and get an idea of what has changed in that single thing over the years. The ride my group focused on was the Storybook Land Canal Boats. In our initial search, we found some information on some of the basic changes to the attraction, such as the addition of “Frozen” themed miniatures to the ride.

But upon digging deeper, we found a more interesting fact about the ride. This being the segregation of the employees by sex who worked at the attraction. Initially, the employees working at the ride were all male, for two primary reasons. The first being more technical, was that the early boats lacked the ability to go in reverse, so had to be manually pulled from the canal at night, which was quite difficult. The second reason, was that Walt Disney though that the cast members/employees were a sort of metaphor for a father telling a fairy tale to his children. Later on, women were slowly allowed to be assigned to the attraction, and oddly enough, there was a period where only women were assigned to work there, until 1995 when it became coed once again.

Romeo and Juliet

Hello and welcome back to my blog. Today I will be talking about my latest project in humanities. This project, was about the Shakespeare play Romeo and Juliet, and many aspects of it.

To begin off the project, we started to learn the storyline of Romeo and Juliet. Our milestone to show our understanding, was to create our own more modern rendition of Romeo and Juliet, that still kept the essential elements of the story. For this, I decided to write a story about children of Mexican drug kingpins laundering money in Caribbean tax havens and accidentally fall in love. This idea proved very popular among the class for our radio play, which I will discuss later in the post.

Next we moved into looking into certain aspects of the story, and others like it. The big focus for the next bit was on what exactly a classic was, and how we could apply it to our podcast topic. For this, we were put into groups of two, and tasked with having a discussion that relates to identity, what a classic is, and our podcast topics. We were then supposed to craft a cohosted podcast episode using that discussion. My first draft of this, I edited it so much that there wasn’t a conversion, but in my second draft I think I made some good points relating to my podcast topic, and included much of the conversation. You can listen to this episode below.

 

Our next leg of the project was focusing on two movie renditions of the play that we watched in class. A version from 1968, and one from 1996. For this we were put into groups. Our task was to collectively discuss and note down how each movie used the events and perspectives of its time to influence the setting, variation, and other aspects of the play. We were able to effectively come up with relevant connections to all sorts of stuff from the Vietnam War to the US crack epidemic.

After that, it was time to make another podcast episode, this time about adaptations. This episode was also supposed to be in the cohosted format. We were put into the same groups as the last episode, to help us build on our strengths and weaknesses from the last episode to make this one much better. I was able to connect this to my podcast topic relatively effectively like the last one, and better incorporated the cohost format in this episode.

 

 

Next was the largest part of the project. For this, our whole class had to collectively work together to create a filmed radio show rendition of the play, which relates to a modern audience. My primary task for this, was to come up with and create sound effects to be used in the play, from random objects. I also ended up playing male Juliet in the play after the original Juliet supposedly got knocked out in the play. Overall I think that the play went quite well, and there were no unscripted issues.

I believe that through all of this parts of the project, I have been able to effectively make the story of Romeo and Juliet relevant to modern audiences, prove it’s place as a classic, and connect the story to my podcast topic to the story in a relevant manner.

The Manhattan Project and WW2

Hello and welcome back to my blog. Today I’m going to talk about another podcast related topic. This time, about the Second World War.

As the start of this post would suggest, we were making our episodes about WW2. But not just any topic about WW2. We had to find a WW2 topic that was relevant to our podcast topic as a whole. This was very difficult for some, but natural resource use was plentiful during the war, and an easy topic to cover. My issue came when trying to find an expert on the topic, who are quite few and far between. For this reason, my topic has deviated towards the Manhattan Project as a whole, which natural resources were critical in.

The first big part of this project, was to explore nationalism. This is of course a key factor for the entirety of the Second World War, so it was very relevant to the topic. We had to write a paragraph about nationalism, and I think a did a good job at using historical examples to proved the significance of it. This was important to show one of the big causes of World War Two. Here is my paragraph.

The next milestones for the project, just involved setting up he structure, and make up of our podcast episode. I explored many sources related to natural resources during the war, and uncovered some very interesting things, to construct the best amount of information to work as evidence for what my episode is trying to speak/represent. At this stage I also began scripting my episode, which was difficult at first because I didn’t have my interview. This was also about where it wad decided that I should focus my episode around the history of the Manhattan project.

For my interview for the episode, I interviewed my uncle, who is very knowledgeable on the topic of nuclear energy, the history of the Manhattan Project, among other things. He gave me plenty of information regarding the background, and entire process to develop the atom bomb.

And now, let’s talk about the end result. I created my episode to include as much of the relevant information from the interview that I could, to fully tell the story of the Manhattan Project. I also started the podcast out, talking about the war prior to the Manhattan Project, and how Canada took advantage of its natural resources to keep Britain supplied and fed. After a few revisions of the episode, I was able to get the music just right, so that it wasn’t too repetitive or too loud. Here is my podcast.

Another milestone that went on over the course of the project, was one about analyzing and connecting to stories. For this we read, and listened to several stories, that ranged from an American reaction to a war declaration, to a WW2 vet who was one of the men who landed in Normandy on D-Day. These not only showed us different experiences of war, but also showed us the effects it had on different people and their families.

Over the course of the project, I believe I have shown my understanding and provided evidence to show the extremely influential consequences of the Second World War, and the Manhattan Project, along with the key roles Canada played in both.

I think that I’ve shown my understanding of the global collaborator competency as I have used both domestic and international sources across the length of the project, and had my interview with somebody, who may be a relative but do live in another country.

Thank you for reading about my latest project. This wasn’t an easy project, but I think that I have been able to learn a lot about the Second World War by completing this, and hope to share it with you if you listen to my podcast episode. If you want to see my podcast’s page click either the Anchor or Spotify links here.

Weekly Post November 2-7

Hello and welcome back to my blog. This is now my second weekly learning portfolio post. This will be a quick little reflection post about the week.

I think that this has been a very productive week for me for The Greatest Canadian project. This week I got my interview recorded, recorded my podcast, and edited it. However one thing I think I should improve on is my interview preparation, as I had to re-record my interview several times to get my recording to actually get the audio, and need to record my side of the audio again. I should also find a way to use a better mic while doing things like online interviews.

Something interesting we did this week was watch the “Greatest Canadian” TV show episode for Tommy Douglas, and compare it to the episode for terry fox. I think that episode could be extra relevant to my podcast and relate to it as it was a discussion about the political accomplishments of Tommy Douglas. I think that I may be able to use my experience watching that to reform my podcast slightly to use some of the ways the show communicated its point so I can communicate mine better.

Thanks for reading my post this week.

Weekly post, Oct 26-30

Hello and welcome to my first weekly blog post. This is for the week of October 26rd to October 30th.

The first thing I would like to talk about was an assignment on Monday, to look up Canada’s international involvement throughout history. We were told to read a section of a textbook, and pick a part to make a keynote on. I did one on Canada in Yugoslavia. Looking into that assignment reminded me of a CBC documentary I had watched a while back about one of the incidents I talk about in my keynote. I found it interesting that I was able to connect my previous experience learning about these topics to our current assignments and the curriculum.

Here is my keynote and the documentary:

I would also like to give an update on my podcast project. For this I have arranged an interview, and made a final script, and am well on my way to completion.

I think this has been a quite productive week, and I have shown my commitment to my contract grade.

Thanks for joining me for this quick reflective post for the week. Hope to see you next week.