David Akin - May 23rd, 2014
The current exhibition at the Karsh-Masson Gallery at City of Ottawa features an exhibit by Palestinian-born artist Rehab Nazzal. The exhibit has been strongly condemned by Rafael Barak, Israel’s Ambassador to Canada. [An article at MuslimLink profiles Nazzal and the exhibition] Here is the press release issued this morning by the Embassy of Israel:
Exhibit at Ottawa City Hall Glorifies Terror
Ottawa, Canada – May 23, 2014: An exhibit at Ottawa’s City Hall Karsh-Masson Art Gallery reflects a culture of hate and incitement that contradicts the values of Canada as a guardian of peace and champion against terror. Although the exhibit claims to present “portraits of lost artists, activists, writers and leaders,” this deceitful description is cover for what is a “who’s who” of international terrorists: suicide bombers, masterminds of massacres, terrorist operatives and the hijackers of planes, buses, and schools. Many of those glorified are individuals connected to organizations that appear on Canada’s official list of terrorist entities. Read more…
David Akin - September 25th, 2013
David Gilmour, novelist and former broadcaster, and currently teacher at the University of Toronto:
I teach modern short fiction to third and first-year students. So I teach mostly Russian and American authors. Not much on the Canadian front. But I can only teach stuff I love. I can’t teach stuff that I don’t, and I haven’t encountered any Canadian writers yet that I love enough to teach.I’m not interested in teaching books by women. Virginia Woolf is the only writer that interests me as a woman writer, so I do teach one of her short stories. But once again, when I was given this job I said I would only teach the people that I truly, truly love. Unfortunately, none of those happen to be Chinese, or women. Except for Virginia Woolf. And when I tried to teach Virginia Woolf, she’s too sophisticated, even for a third-year class. Usually at the beginning of the semester a hand shoots up and someone asks why there aren’t any women writers in the course. I say I don’t love women writers enough to teach them, if you want women writers go down the hall. What I teach is guys. Serious heterosexual guys. F. Scott Fitzgerald, Chekhov, Tolstoy. Real guy-guys. Henry Miller. Philip Roth.
via David Gilmour on Building Strong Stomachs | Hazlitt | Random House of Canada.
UPDATE: Is David Gilmour a sexist? David Gilmour says, of course not.
UPPERDATE: Lest you believe Gilmour was taken out of context or misquoted, the transcript has been published.
EVEN MORE UPDATES: I put together a Storify — “Twitter is such a bore …”
David Akin - May 26th, 2013
The country’s librarians and archivists never had a good feeling from the start about Daniel Caron, the economist appointed in 2009 by Heritage Minister James Moore to be Canada’s Librarian and Archivist of Canada, partly because, they felt, his professional training and pedigree was as an economist. (He did a postgraduate degree in economics at Laval and then a doctorate in “applied human sciences” at the Université de Montréal.) Caron, in 2009, was also taking over what was described as a newly “unified” institution. Rather than have separate two separate positions — a national Librarian and a Chief Archivist — both jobs were going to “unified” in one office and Caron was picked to make it a success.
David Akin - May 15th, 2013
Hot off the presses ..
Not only did the French- and English-speaking Caron bill taxpayers more than $4,000 in 2011-12 so he could take one-on-one Spanish lessons, he signed a $10,000 contract last year for another year’s worth of lessons though a spokesman said no charges were ever actually incurred on that second contract.
Still, Caron appeared to enjoy the taxpayer-funded perks of the job.
Caron enjoyed dining, for example, at the swanky Rideau Club in downtown Ottawa, billing taxpayers more than $2,100 for his 31 visits to the members-only club over the last two years. And if he wasn’t eating at the Rideau Club, taxpayers still paid: He expensed more than $8,700 for 35 business lunches elsewhere over the last two years.
Researchers with the opposition NDP calculated that Caron’s total bill to taxpayers for his travel and hospitality was more than $87,000 last year alone, including six trips to Europe so he could meet with international archivists. By comparison, his boss, the heritage minister, spent about only half that – $47,755 – on travel and hospitality.
via Sun News : In hot water for big spending ways, Canada’s top librarian quits.
The opposition NDP is on to this:
David Akin - March 23rd, 2013
TORONTO – Canadian legend Gordon Lightfoot in performance in November, 2012 at Toronto’s Massey Hall, a venue he’s been playing every year in the fall for 45 years. The federal government, in its budget last week, promised $8 million to fix the place up. (Jack Boland / Toronto Sun)
From Budget 2013, tabled Thursday by Finance Minister Jim Flaherty: Read more…