Commentary

Abandoning the flawed “corporate rights agreement” would free up Canada to pursue a low-carbon future, argues U of A political economist.

19
June
2018

If Donald Trump says NAFTA is the worst deal ever, it must be good. Right?

Not necessarily.

Before Trump came on the scene, Canadians were evenly split on NAFTA. Every time he speaks or tweets, Canadians love NAFTA more. Its popularity probably jumped over the moon after Trump’s drive-by, virtual shooting of the prime minister at the G7 summit.

NAFTA: point/counterpoint

This article is one of two opinion-editorial pieces published in the Toronto Star that examine opposing views on Canada and NAFTA.

Read the opposing view

They may like it, but Canadians don’t know what’s in NAFTA. They think it’s about free trade—no tariff barriers among the three North American countries. Wrong.

Tariffs between Canada and the U.S. were very low before the 1989 Canada-U.S. Free Trade Agreement (FTA) and 1994 NAFTA b...

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22
June
2018

COMMENTARY || Why it’s so difficult to prove what causes cancer

U of A epidemiology expert explains the real-world complexity that is difficult to replicate in scientific studies.

Last month, the Quebec court authorized a class-action suit against two brands of baby powder that alleges that regular use of talc powder by women in their genital area is linked to a higher risk of
21
June
2018

COMMENTARY || Supporting GSAs is in Canada’s best interest

GSAs foster diversity, educate about human rights and support equality for LGBTQ and allied students, argues education expert.

Across Canada there has been much support for, but also consternation against, gay-straight alliances in publicly funded schools. Currently, Ontario, Manitoba and Alberta all have government
20
June
2018

COMMENTARY || Canada is turning its back on Central American refugees

By adhering to the Safe Third Country Agreement, the Canadian government is willfully ignoring the plight of refugee families being separated, argues historian.

Today, on World Refugee Day, Canadians might see yet another news story about the traumas of young Central American girls and boys being separated from their asylum-seeking parents by U.S.
15
June
2018

COMMENTARY || How to manage information overload

Researchers find using a dashboard interface helps prevent overreactions and avoid biases.

We live in a world with a lot of data. In fact, we’re bombarded by it. Estimates suggest that today we take in about five times as much information as we did 25 years ago, and that we process as
05
June
2018

COMMENTARY || What did the faked death of a Russian journalist really achieve?

Faked assassination of Arkady Babchenko casts doubt on credibility of Ukrainian reporting and Russian culpability, says U of A historian.

The faked assassination of Russian journalist Arkady Babchenko has polarized analysts of Ukraine. Within the country, the “sting” operation staged by the Ukrainian security services (SBU) seems to
09
May
2018

COMMENTARY || Trump is biggest unknown in looming North Korea summit

U.S. president’s unprecedented decision to meet with North Korean leader sets stage for a summit where “anything is possible,” says UAlberta historian.

Heartwarming pictures of North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un being greeted at the border by South Korean president Moon Jae-In dominated news last week. While the summit—the first time a North Korean
08
May
2018

COMMENTARY || Will wildfires threaten Alberta and B.C. communities again this year?

Wet spring is no guarantee against forest fires, says UAlberta expert.

As winter finally relaxes its icy grip on Canada, we start thinking about the upcoming wildfire season. Will we have another record-breaking fire season in B.C.? Will there be another Fort
04
May
2018

COMMENTARY || Courts will look to strike the right balance between unity and diversity in constitutional challenges

Inherent contradiction between provincial diversity and national unity can spark sharp disagreements, but it’s also what makes Canada work, argues constitutional law expert.

It has been a busy spring for the Constitution. Although Canadians have become used to court battles concerning the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, it has been an older version of Canada’s supreme
27
April
2018

COMMENTARY || Energy industry must not be allowed to bully universities

UAlberta must resist demands to rescind honorary doctorate to David Suzuki, say signatories to open letter.

Despite recent media attention to the contrary, there is broad support at the University of Alberta, and among alumni and Albertans, for the honorary doctorate being granted to David Suzuki for his
24
April
2018

COMMENTARY || Suzuki controversy shows U of A champions freedom of thought

Take uncomfortable ideas, debate, and conflict out of the university and its fundamental role in society disappears, says U of A president.

David Suzuki is a controversial figure. A companion of the Order of Canada in recognition of his promotion of science literacy and education, he has been an inspiration to many around the world and a
18
April
2018

COMMENTARY || Did the West rush to judgment on the Russian spy poisoning?

Expelling Russian diplomats may have been the right move but it was too hasty given lack of conclusive proof, says UAlberta historian.

On March 4, former Russian double agent Sergei Skripal, a British resident, and his daughter Yulia, visiting from Russia, were found slumped on a park bench in the quiet town of Salisbury, Wiltshire,