The Niagara Psalter
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The Niagara Psalter

Ever since I was a young man I have been obsessed with the biblical Psalms. Perhaps it has something to do with sharing my name with the archetypal Israelite king to whom many of the Psalms are attributed. Or it may be that my love of music predisposed me to a book whose contents were expected to be sung from ancient times.

Trudeau strikes again
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Trudeau strikes again

In the absence of a popular consensus on an issue, there is much to be said for party leaders permitting their members to vote their conscience. Whether the controversial measure passes or is defeated, the party as a whole does not have to assume collective responsibility and can focus instead on other potentially less divisive issues. It can thereby avoid alienating potential voters.

The colours of the globe: Iraq and Ukraine
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The colours of the globe: Iraq and Ukraine

This autumn I will once again bring my increasingly out-of-date globe into the classroom. But I will advise my students not to take the colours they see as a guide to what they will find if they travel the surface of the real thing. Take your passport, but be prepared for the unexpected, especially if you are heading to the Middle East or Eastern Europe.

Like father, like son: The Trudeau legacy
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Like father, like son: The Trudeau legacy

Trudeau famously asserted that “there’s no place for the state in the bedrooms of the nation” and that “what’s done in private between adults doesn’t concern the Criminal Code.” As a belated recognition of the intrinsic limits of government, this statement would appear indisputable. After all, a law against non-marital sexual activity could hardly be enforced with any consistency and would necessitate something close to a totalitarian surveillance state.