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Player's Own Voice in Studio: Politics and play with Adam van Koeverden, Pam Buisa –



2020 will go into the almanacs as the year that athletes, en masse, blew up protesting for social change. 

Olympics watchers might say that fuse was lit 50 years ago by the on-podium Black power salutes of Tommie Smith and John Carlos in Mexico City. Heroes now, they were widely criticized at the time. It was similar to Colin Kaepernick’s decision to protest police violence against Black men that cost him his 49ers career, before gradually shifting opinion came closer to Kaepernick’s side.

With more players protesting than ever before, and more podiums becoming platforms for progressive causes, it’s high time for a conversation about the rise of the athlete activist. Player’s Own Voice in Studio hosts Anastasia Bucsis and Signa Butler bring two thoughtful, challenging guests to the table.

Adam van Koeverden, four-time Olympic medallist and eight-time world champion in canoe/kayak, was elected Liberal Member of Parliament in Oct. 2019. He is the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Diversity and Inclusion and Youth, in addition to the Minister of Canadian Heritage’s Sport portfolio. As both athlete and politician, he encapsulates the issues at hand.   

Pamphinette Buisa, member of Canada’s national rugby 7s team, has become a leading figure in the west-coast Black Lives Matter movement. She organizes and speaks at rallies and events advocating for better BIPOC circumstances. Buisa asserts that every one of us is a political being, whether we like it or not, and as such, we all have responsibility to act.

WATCH | Buisa, van Koeverden discuss politics’ place in sports:

Player’s Own Voice in Studio is the newest way that CBC Sports audiences can get to know the inner life of athletes, following in the path of Player’s Own Voice podcast and the Player’s Own Voice personal writing series.

Each digital video episode takes a single topic-driven approach, with our two co-hosts joined by two guests for substantial conversation about issues at the core of modern sport.

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EDITORIAL: Straight talk, not politics –



Let’s just put it plainly: it’s tiresome.

Not only that, but, during a global pandemic, it’s counter-productive, and is increasing the amount of fear Canadians already live with every day.

If you’re having a hard time figuring out when vaccines will arrive in Canada, and what order will be used to set the priority for the first vaccinations, you’re far from alone.

And Canada’s federal politicians aren’t helping, because they’re using the same old tricks and tactics to turn the pandemic into a cheap way to score political points.

Here’s a sample from the House of Commons question period on Tuesday.

Opposition Leader Erin O’Toole: “The prime minister has suggested that only a few Canadians will be vaccinated by September.”

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau: “As experts have said, we expect most Canadians to be vaccinated by September of next year, but we hope it will be much sooner than that.”

O’Toole again: “This morning, the deputy prime minister announced that only a handful of Canadians will be vaccinated by next summer. This government’s delays are putting lives in danger, and Canadian families want to see a plan.”

Canada’s federal politicians aren’t helping, because they’re using the same old tricks and tactics to turn the pandemic into a cheap way to score political points.

Trudeau: “Mr. Speaker, this government worked hard throughout the summer and secured access to tens of millions of doses of vaccines for Canadians.”

O’Toole: “Why did the prime minister put the lives of Canadians in the hands of Communist China when it came to a COVID vaccine?”

Trudeau: “Mr. Speaker, the leader of the Opposition should not just make stuff up.”

And it’s not just the leaders of the federal parties.

Conservative MP Pierre Poilievre: “Mr. Speaker, Canadians want their lives back, but yesterday they got no plan to fix the vaccine mess that the government has made.”

Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland: “Mr. Speaker, let me start by setting the record straight on what I said about vaccines this morning since the leader of the official Opposition misconstrued my words, something which is becoming a bad habit of his. As Moderna’s chief medical officer said this week, ‘Canada’s in the front row’ on vaccines.”

Back and forth it goes, and somewhere in the middle of all that lies the truth. Congratulations to you if you have any idea where.

The Conservatives claim the worst-case scenario, while the Liberals, if they actually have a plan, are being far too coy about telling us what it might be.

This is not a political football. It’s too serious to be kicked back and forth for marginal political points.

If there’s one thing that Canadians deserve as they suffer through both the broad range of impacts of the pandemic economic downturn, as well as the personal health dangers of COVID-19, it’s the absolute truth about where we are, and what we can expect.


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Politics Briefing: Liberals table UNDRIP bill – The Globe and Mail




The Liberal government has tabled a bill to implement the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

The legislation would provide a framework to ensure that future laws take into account Indigenous human rights.

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The bill is the second time that Parliament will be looking at the issue in recent years. A private member’s bill introduced by former NDP MP Romeo Saganash in 2016 passed the House of Commons, but died in the Senate due to opposition from Conservative senators.

This is the daily Politics Briefing newsletter, written by Chris Hannay. It is available exclusively to our digital subscribers. If you’re reading this on the web, subscribers can sign up for the Politics newsletter and more than 20 others on our newsletter signup page. Have any feedback? Let us know what you think.


Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland is vetting at least five people to take over as deputy minister of her department, including three current DMs, and officials at the International Monetary Fund and the Bank of Canada.

Why the timing of the COVID-19 vaccine is so crucial to containing the virus’s spread.

How Newfoundland and Labrador’s rookie Premier, Andrew Furey, is trying to turn the province around.

The Liberal government has introduced a number of legislative initiatives recently to get tough on the tech giants, and a new Nanos poll shows support for the agenda, including requiring Netflix to charge sales tax and to fund Canadian content.

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Canada has joined its Five Eyes allies in condemning a tweet from a Chinese government spokesperson that falsely depicts an Australian soldier holding a knife to a child’s throat.

Health experts say a House petition sponsored by Conservative MP Derek Sloan that refers to the COVID-19 vaccine as an example of “human experimentation” spreads dangerous misinformation.

And former U.S. presidents Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama are teaming up to say they would take a COVID-19 vaccine on TV, if it would help boost vaccination rates.

Campbell Clark (The Globe and Mail) on Trudeau sending out a cabinet minister to explain a broken promise on clean water for First Nations: “The political value of the promise, in fact, was that it was clear, easy to understand, specific, and made by the person who would be PM. And what we are supposed to get in return is accountability. On Wednesday, [Marc] Miller said he takes responsibility. But this was about prime ministerial accountability. Accept no substitute.”

Avvy Go, Debbie Douglas and Shalini Konanur (The Globe and Mail) on pushing back on the Liberal claim that the fiscal update was feminist and intersectional: “Statistics Canada’s most recent labour-force survey confirms that Canadians in Arabic, Black, Chinese and South Asian communities experienced much higher unemployment rates and much higher increases in unemployment rates over the past year compared with white Canadians. The government promised to create more jobs through massive infrastructure investments, but it did not guarantee these jobs will be made equitably accessible to those under-represented in the labour market due to structural racism and other forms of discrimination.”

Margaret McCuaig-Johnston (National Post) on why the Chinese state’s practice of kidnapping other citizens must stop: “This horror has befallen other Canadians, as well as citizens of other countries. It is time for liberal democracies to come together to show China that there are consequences for such actions.”

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Fariha Naqvi-Mohamed (Montreal Gazette) on why small businesses need our help: “For my family, shopping locally has, most of all, meant being mindful about where we buy our takeout food. Since the start of the pandemic, we have made a point of supporting locally owned restaurants. We want to see them still there when (one day) COVID-19 is behind us. That means they need our support now.”

Ralph Nader (The Globe and Mail) on Canada’s inadequate investigations into the crash of 737 Boeing Max jets: “Transport Canada and Parliament are affected by Washington’s unwillingness to require Boeing to divulge the information necessary to evaluate Boeing and FAA claims about the justification for ungrounding. An arrogant Boeing refused even to respond to a parliamentary committee’s belated invitation to testify.”

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Indian movie superstar Rajinikanth to launch political party – CP24 Toronto's Breaking News



Ashok Sharma, The Associated Press

Published Thursday, December 3, 2020 1:12PM EST

NEW DELHI – Indian movie superstar Rajinikanth has announced plans to launch his own political party in southern India in January, ending years of speculation by millions of his fans on his political future.

He said in a tweet that he will make an announcement on December 31st — apparently in relation to legislative elections in Tamil Nadu state expected around June next year.

He started taking an active part in politics in 2017.

The 69-year-old Rajinikanth is one of India’s most popular stars.

He’s made more than 175 films since 1975, mostly in the Tamil and Telugu languages.

He tweets that in the upcoming Assembly elections, “the emergence of spiritual politics will happen for sure — A wonder will happen.”

His political prospects appear bright following a vacuum created by the deaths of Jayaram Jayalalithaa, an actor-turned politician with the governing party in the state, and Muthuvel Karunanidhi, the leader of the opposition Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam party.

Cinema has always influenced Tamil politics by turning actors into popular politicians.

Born Shivaji Rao Gaekwad, Rajinikanth worked as a bus conductor for three years before joining an acting school.

He started in small roles as a villain in Tamil cinema and worked his way up, landing roles in Bollywood, the Hindi-language film industry based in Mumbai.

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