Friday Fill(ibuster)

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Political News Friday, August 15, 2014 View Count = 2426

Friday Fill(ibuster)

Robin Williams makes it to Washington in Man of the Year

We begin somewhere between comedy and tragedy. Robin Williams, who died this week, showed us how to take things seriously while also having a laugh. Here he is running for president in a clip from Man of the Year.

Also on the American side of things, a leaked political strategy manual from Georgia offers a “glimpse into the calculations and absurdities that drive modern campaigns.” Questionable grammar and the influence of money abound.

From America back to Canada–sort of. Yahoo News uses new polling data to provocatively ask whether Barack Obama is the most popular political leader in Canada. Is a run for PM in the works?

Also on the way back from the wider world, could foreign policy actually matter in the next federal election? John Ibbitson considers the possibility of a worldly perspective intervening in Canada’s typically navel-gazing politics.

Samara’s Alison Loat appeared on TVO’s The Agenda, explaining the diagnosis and prognosis for Canada’s democratic ills.

And elsewhere on the small screen: the top two characters on TV right now are politicians, according to the oh-so-authoritative Entertainment Weekly. But a blog entry from the archives of all-star Samara volunteer Steven Lee explains the possible dangers of small-screen depictions of larger-than-life politicians.

And without changing channels: do television and truth go together even a little? A fun philosophical dialogue in this summer’s Policy Options explains what television-era politics has in common with selling pastry.

And the plot thickens with swelling communications teams on and around Parliament HillThe Hill Times provides context, detail and history on the spin revolution.

What will it cost you to join a political party? In Alberta, leadership front-runner and former federal cabinet minister Jim Prentice explains why he hasn't been charging anything at all.

While urging readers to check out the Samara-researched Tragedy in the Commons, Rafe Mair proposes to give MPs back their voice through secret-ballot voting in the House of Commons. Dale Smith fires back, explaining why the idea won’t work.

And speaking of change, crowd-sourced polling could shake things up in Winnipeg’s mayoral race

Also on the municipal level, this TED talk from Eric Liu explains how citizens can rediscover power locally. Meanwhile, this week’s Everyday Political Citizen nominees show exactly what local engagement looks like: we’ve got a community organizer from Vancouver and a young activist from Toronto. Nominate your own EPCitizen today!

Political resources and opportunities

Do you have experience in politics or issue activism? Manning School of Practical Politics is looking for folks to teach or facilitate a course, lead a webinar or develop new course material.

And TownHall Social presents a way to leverage social media to make democratic decisions.

(Photo Credit: Ava Gerlitz)


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