Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, left, speaks with Governor General David Johnston following the speech from the throne in the Senate Chamber on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, Friday December 4, 2015. Sean Kilpatrick/The Canadian Press.

Canada's top men

Between superannuated supremes and eminent Canadians, our federal politics can sometimes feel like a collegial class of old friends swapping favours and extending to each other a presumption of trust and goodwill that very few ordinary Canadians think they deserve.

Miss Talavera Bruce 2017, Mayana Rosa Alves, right, takes a cigarette break with two contestants before the start of the 13th annual Miss Talavera Bruce beauty pageant in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Dec. 4, 2018. Silvia Izquierdo/AP Photo.

Is smoking cool again?

Old habits die hard, apparently. While it may not be as ubiquitous a habit as it once was, smoking cigarettes appears to be the new retro, taboo-flouting trend of Gen Z’s It crowd.

People wait to enter the Museum of Fine Arts in Montreal, Saturday, June 6, 2020. Graham Hughes/The Canadian Press.

Do we live in a civilisation?

We live in the valley between civilisations, in the shadow of a peak still visible behind us but unable yet to see the peak in front of us. This should not be cause for despair. Although the history of man has been the story of the rise and fall of civilisations, the most important thing is that civilisation has never yet died out altogether; it has always been preserved somewhere.

Asylum seekers walk down Roxham Road to cross the border from New York into Canada on Friday, March 24, 2023 in Champlain, N.Y. Ryan Remiorz/The Canadian Press.

The Roxham Road deal is a good first step

The revised Safe Third Country Agreement is a good start, but there are still too many loopholes and the revised STCA will require determined enforcement if it is going to be the deterrent that both countries hope it will be.

Former Governor General David Johnston waves as guests in the Senate chamber applaud his tenure in the position during the installation ceremony for Canada's 29th Governor General, Julie Payette, in Ottawa on Monday, October 2, 2017. Fred Chartrand/The Canadian Press.

God save us from the eminent Canadians

The eminently special David Johnston may be expert in many things, but he is not an expert in the areas relevant to this investigation. The problem here is not Johnston, it’s the whole class, nay the very idea, of “eminent Canadians”.