Open Sources Guelph - July 18, 2019


This week on Open Sources Guelph, we're going to get election ready! The Federal Election is just a few weeks away, so we'll check on the status of some of the major parties, plus talk in-depth about one party's very particular move that made headlines locally and nationally. And on top of all that, we'll welcome another member of Guelph's City Council to the studio for another substantive chat about local issues.

This Thursday, July 18, at 5 pm, Scotty Hertz and Adam A. Donaldson will discuss:

Warren Piece. We're probably just  little over a month away from the kick-off to the 2019 Federal Election, and moves are being made. The so-called "master of the dark arts" Warren Kinsella has been hired by the Green Party in a rare power move, polls show that Ontarians might rethink voting Conservative because of Doug Ford, and the Liberals have mostly been able to come back in the polls after SNC-Lavalin. What do we make of the latest moves in the Federal arena as we countdown to E-Day?

Maxime Overdrive. People's Party of Canada leader Maxime Bernier was schedule to take part in a town hall at the Guelph Youth Music Centre this Friday, but concerns about (checks notes) "antifa violence" forced the People's Party riding association to cancel the event. Guelph groups were planning a protest, prompted by a new allegation about Bernier's support of white supremacists, but the cancellation has prompted a local debate about Free Speech, and who gets to use it, so let's talk about that!

Return of the Mark. Guelph City Council will rise for the summer on Monday, but not before they deal with just a bit more controversy. The City is going to have dig into the financials to find cost savings, while it looks like the new new main branch of the Guelph Public Library will be the first victim of Bill 108 in Guelph. To talk about this, and other issues around the horseshoe, we'll be joined this week by Ward 6 Councillor Mark MacKinnon, who will talk about what council is doing this summer.

Open Sources is live on CFRU 93.3 fm and at 5 pm on Thursday.

End Credits - July 17, 2019 (Midsommar)


This week on End Credits, we're going for a kind of scary, maybe confusing, trip into the woods with Midsommar. Speaking of maybe scary, we're also going to talk about Momo the movie, the waning career of Woody Allen, and the issues with Dwayne Johnson's career choices. On top of that, we'll talk about the 20 years since another high-profile trip to the woods.

This Wednesday, July 17, at 2 pm, Adam A. Donaldson and Vince Masson will discuss:

Rock Direction. Dwayne Johnson is one of the world's biggest movie stars, but he's bizarrely loyal to a few directors who seem to not really do his talent any justice. As the AV Club pointed out, Johnson needs better directors, but does he really want to expand on his craft so much as continue to be a global brand, especially with all his success?

Allen Wrench. Last week, we talked about the pending retirement of Quentin Tarantino, and while he's thinking about leaving the movie business, Woody Allen is talking about re-upping. He'll die on a movie set, he says, and that's despite the fact that he's having to self-release his own movie after years of persistent #MeToo style allegations. So Woody, retirement?

Momopoly. Momo may not have been driving kids to suicide, but the creepy internet meme is about to become a movie star, not bad for something that started out as an art piece in Tokyo. Still, we have to ask the question, can internet memes be transferred to movie characters? It didn't work for Slender Man, or The Bye Bye Man, so what chance is there for Momo?

Blair House. It's been 20 years since The Blair Witch Project opened in theatres everywhere. At the dawn of the internet, you could sell a found footage movie as a potentially salvaged documentary about three missing hikers, so it's easy to see how the phenomenon was born. We'll look back at the chilly legacy of the Blair Witch.

REVIEW: Midsommar (2019). Ari Aster made a splash last year with Hereditary, and he looks to be exploring even more controversial ground in Midsommar. It's a horror movie without any jumpscares, it's a drama but with an underline and building sense of tension, and it's also, occasionally, blatantly funny. How do you make heads or tales of a movie like this? And do you even want to sit through what may be the worst movie vacation to Europe since Hostel?

End Credits is on CFRU 93.3 fm and Wednesday at 2 pm.

GUELPH POLITICAST #177 - Aisha Jahangir, NDP Candidate


The slate of major party candidates for the riding of Guelph is complete, and of the five, just two of them have never before been a guest on the Guelph Politicast... Until now.  Well, one of them gets scratched off the list this week, at least. Prepare to say "Hello" to Aisha Jahangir, who is one of those five people trying to become Guelph's next Member of Parliament.

Aisha Jahangir is the NDP candidate for Guelph this election year. She ran to be trustee for Ward 6 and Puslinch on the Upper Grand District School Board last year, but her day job is as a registered nurse specialized in Labour and Delivery, and Mental Health. She's also been a labour organizer for her local Ontario Nurses Association, and that's just the kind of background that made her such an appealing candidate for local New Democrats.

So consider this a getting to know you kind of podcast. Jahangir will talk about the changing face of politics, and her hopes for a positive campaign based on love and compassion. She also discusses her experiences and career as a nurse, and how that’s come to inform her politics and what she thinks medical professionals need in terms of political support. And she talks about what she learned from her last campaign, and what she hopes to accomplish by the end of this one (aside from being Guelph’s next MP).

A note before you hit 'play': this podcast was originally going to be a double-bill with a separate interview with Conservative candidate Dr. Sachan, but he unfortunately had to cancel at the last minute due to an unforeseen circumstance. Stay tuned because he will be featured on an upcoming episode of the Politicast shortly.

So let's get into the mind of the 2019 NDP candidate for Guelph, Aisha Jahangir, on this week's edition of the Guelph Politicast!

You can learn more about Aisha Jahangir and her candidacy at the Guelph NDP website here. You can also follow Guelph Politico for all the latest from the election campaign, especially as we get closer to Election Day, which, this year, is October 21.

The host for the Guelph Politicast is Podbean. Find more episodes of the Politicast here, or download them on your favourite podcast app at iTunes, Stitcher, Google Play, and Spotify.

Also, when you subscribe to the Guelph Politicast channel and you will also get an episode of Open Sources Guelph every Monday, and an episode of End Credits every Friday.

Open Sources Guelph - July 11, 2019


This week on Open Sources Guelph, we're getting into the weeds. It's summer, after all, and our politicians aren't making a lot of news like they should, so let's get into the issues. For instance, since when did protesting pipelines make you a target for our own spies? Why is everyone so angry about a movie? Why isn't everyone more angry about the treatment of children in U.S. government custody? And what if most of us are wrong about our own thoughts on immigration here in Canada?

This Thursday, July 11, at 5 pm, Scotty Hertz and Adam A. Donaldson will discuss:

Spies on Us. The B.C. Civil Liberties Association released thousands of documents from the Canadian Security Intelligence Agency (CSIS) that showed that the spy agency was watching people peacefully protesting the Northern Gateway Pipeline, and more than that, they were taking tips from oil and gas companies. It seems incredibly dangerous that our national spy agency is watching people protesting public policy, especially at the behest of industry, so who is CSIS really working for?

Movie Fight. This weekend, the movie Unplanned opens on 24 of Canada's 2,500 some-odd movie screens, and boy is it controversial. The film, which comes from the Christian-influenced Pure Flix, is about the true life story of a Planned Parent volunteer turned anti-abortion activist, and many have attached themselves to it for purely political reasons, including some Conservative MPs. But do we continue to focus too much on the politics and not the real issues of abortion access?

The Kids. The picture at detention facilities along the U.S./Mexico border keeps getting darker and darker. New allegations paint treatment as cruel and unusual in these facilities, from kids being unable to find someplace to lie down to sleep, to punishment for those with the courage to complain, to even some allegations of sexual assault. Politicians seem stymied and unable to intercede for the migrants while the allegations of cruelty compound every day, so what will it take to get any action?

But What if You're Wrong? The CBC released a pre-election survey that showed 57 per cent of Canadians thought that we should accept no more refugees, and that 24 per cent thought that Canada had too many immigrants. The feeling is that immigration is going to be a third rail in the coming Federal election, but the fact of the matter is that Canada's population is only growing under immigration. Are we allowing an anti-immigrant bias to proliferate by not challenging popular assumptions?

Open Sources is live on CFRU 93.3 fm and at 5 pm on Thursday.

End Credits - July 10, 2019 (Spider-Man: Far From Home)


Another week on End Credits means another superhero movie. At least that's the way it seems sometimes, but this week it happens to be true with a review of Spider-Man: Far From Home. In other unsurprising developments, there's casting controversy for a Disney remake, and Tarantino's talking about retirement again. We've got some new trailers too, and we're going to celebrate two-and-a-half decades of Gump! 

This Wednesday, July 10, at 2 pm, Adam A. Donaldson and Peter Salmon will discuss:

Open Seas-on. Disney announced that they've found their live-action Little Mermaid, and she's a young actress named Halle Bailey. While she's undoubtedly talented, and is an experienced singer/songwriter, the one thing she's not is a Caucasian redhead, which has, predictably, brought out racist trolls online. Why are so many people so mad about who plays a mermaid?

Quentirement Plan. It's been known for years that Quentin Tarantino was going to retire after 10 movies, but might he retire sooner? Technically, since Kill Bill was released as two movies, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood would be Tarantino's 10th film, but let's ask the real question: Isn't it just time for Tarantino to s**t or get off the pot with all this retirement talk?

Rabid Knives Out the Next Level. This week in new trailers, there's a lot to get excited about. The Last Jedi director Rian Johnson goes back to basics with the whodunit Knives Out, while the Twisted Twins remake one of their inspirations with the update Cronenberg classic Rabid. In the meantime, there's a new Jumanji coming out because of money reasons.

Gump Up the Volume. This week marks 25 years since the release of Forrest Gump, the Academy Award winner for Best Picture in 1994. It seems timely for a re-examination of the film, so is it a harmless stroll through Americana in the mid-20th century, or is it an overwrought tale of a white guy winning while everyone around him struggles?

REVIEW: Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019). Fresh from a five-year break in existential nothingness following the events of Avengers: Endgame, Spider-Man is ready for a vacation, but Nick Fury has other plans. This latest Spider-adventure is a chance to catch up and reset from the world-shattering consequences of Endgame, but you can't catch your breath too long because your friendly neighbourhood hero from Queens has new bad guys to stop!

End Credits is on CFRU 93.3 fm and Wednesday at 2 pm.

GUELPH POLITICAST #176 - Aid for Legal Aid


There are a million stories in the Doug Ford era of provincial governance, and covering them all isn't easy. One of the stories that has perhaps fallen through the cracks is the cuts to Legal Aid Ontario. In April's provincial budget, funding to legal aid was cut by 30 per cent, and all $133 million of that took effect immediately. So now what?

Thousands of people who count as Ontario's most vulnerable - including drug addicts, people with mental health issues, victims of domestic abuse, and people who live in poverty - desperately needed the access that legal aid provides. Without quality legal assistance, these cuts could mean a greater chance of miscarriages of justice, and a much slower court system as more people are forced to represent themselves.

The quality and speed of our justice system should be a major cause for concern to everyone in Ontario, at least that's what the lawyers themselves are trying to make us understand, and two of those lawyers are guests on this week's podcast. First, you'll hear from criminal lawyer Michael Spratt, a partner at Abergel Goldstein & Partners LLP in Ottawa, and then you'll hear from Anthea Millikin, the executive director of the Legal Clinic of Guelph and Wellington County.

From Spratt, you'll hear about the negative consequences of legal aid cuts from his point of view as a criminal attorney who argues cases for clients who receive legal aid. You'll also hear about the complexities of being a legal aid attorney, what people may not understand about the legal system, and why it’s full speed ahead on these cuts even though the government is full of lawyers that should know better. After that, you'll hear from Millikin about how the cuts are directly affecting the work being done out of our own legal clinic.

So let's dive into why our legal aid system is needing some aid of it's own on this week's edition of the Guelph Politicast!

You can read more of Spratt’s writings about the law and politics on his blog. You can also listen to his podcast, The Docket, by downloading it from Soundcloud, or subscribe on iTunes. To access the services of Legal Clinic of Guelph and Wellington County, you can find them online, call them at 519-821-2100, or visit their office at 176 Wyndham St N.

The host for the Guelph Politicast is Podbean. Find more episodes of the Politicast here, or download them on your favourite podcast app at iTunes, Stitcher, Google Play, and Spotify.

Also, when you subscribe to the Guelph Politicast channel and you will also get an episode of Open Sources Guelph every Monday, and an episode of End Credits every Friday.

Open Sources Guelph - July 4, 2019


This week on Open Sources Guelph, everyone loves a parade. This could be a reference to the Fourth of July sideshow that Trump is putting on today, but it could just as easily be a reference to his parade of embarrassments and scandals in the last week alone. Along with that, we'll talk about the protests in Hong Kong, the politics of cartooning, and a Supreme Court case that should have a positive effect on victims of rape seeking justice in Canada.

This Thursday, July 4, at 5 pm, Scotty Hertz and Adam A. Donaldson will discuss:

Ivanka Was Here. It was another successful trip abroad for U.S. President Donald Trump, and by "successful" we mean utter and complete embarrassment. While Trump palled around with three of the world's most despicable dictators, his daughter Ivanka pretended that she was her own world leader much to the confusion of actual world leaders. Meanwhile, Trump will finally get the military parade he's always wanted, as he looks to be turning a national celebration of American Independence into your average Trump rally. So how do we like winning now?

Street Fight. Meanwhile, in Hong Kong, people are in the streets for the worst civil disobedience seen in China since the pro-democracy protests  in 1989. The problem is a controversial new bill that would give China the ability to send accused criminals in Hong Kong to the Chinese mainland for trial. The government sees this as a way to ensure that Hong Kong doesn't become a safe haven for criminals, while the people of Hong Kong see this as an erosion of their rights. Is there a path to resolution, and what does this say about the place Hong Kong holds in China?

Backhand Drawn. You've probably never heard of political cartoonist Michael de Adder, but you've probably seen his work, including his latest cartoon which features Donald Trump callously playing golf next to the bodies of a father and daughter who perished while trying to flee to the United States. After the cartoon went viral, the New Brunswick paper de Adder drew for told him his services were no longer required, de Adder says it's because of the conservative leanings of the paper's owner, the famous Irving family. So what does this say about our press freedoms?

History Test. The Supreme Court of Canada ruled that in the case of an Edmonton rape trial, the complainant's past sexual history cannot be used as evidence. Rape shield laws are supposed to prevent that from happening, but the Supreme Court sent the case back for a new trial because the victim's previous "friends with benefits" relationship with her accused rapist was brought up by the defence. How will this ruling change the way rape cases are tried, and is it the victory for victims that it seems to be?

Open Sources is live on CFRU 93.3 fm and at 5 pm on Thursday.

End Credits - July 3, 2019 (Toy Story 4)


This week on End Credits, you've got a friend in us, and since we're such good friends, you can trust our opinions on this week's review, which is the new Pixar movie, Toy Story 4. We'll also talk about the never-ending quest for the so-called "Snyder Cut," the end of the quest to make a Mouse Guard movie, the future of fakes, and some cool (or not) new trailers.

This Wednesday, July 3, at 2 pm, Adam A. Donaldson and Vince Masson will discuss:

Snyder Web. For nearly two years, Zack Snyder fans have been petitioning for the release of the director's cut for Justice League. Circumstances forced Snyder to leave the project in post-production, and many see the finished film by Joss Whedon as something of a commercial failure, but is this fan obsession well placed? And does it matter if the "Snyder Cut" exists at all?

No House for Mouse. One of the projects slayed by the Disney/Fox merger is Mouse Guard. Based on the comic book series about mice as medieval protectors, about $20 million in pre-production and test footage was sunk into the project before it was cancelled, and then director Wes Bell released it online. Might his gambit save the potential Mouse Guard film?

Deepfake Impact. A YouTube creator posted a video replacing Arnold Schwarzenegger with Sylvester Stallone in a clip from Terminator 2: Judgment Day using the software Deepfake. Many are concerned about the use of Deepfake to create fake news, but what opportunity is there for Hollywood to use the technology to fulfill their craziest casting expectations?

Angels, Planes, and Liars. In trailer news this week, Roland Emmerich finally takes a break from the end of the world, to dive into one of the biggest aerial battles of World War II. Meanwhile, three L.A. private detectives make a comeback, but they still only answer to a man named "Charlie." And Ian McKellan has a secret that he doesn't want Helen Mirren to know.

REVIEW: Toy Story 4 (2019). Although it's been nine years since the supposed end of the series, the toys of Toy Story are back with one last adventure, this one with a turn to the existential. Far from Andy's room, Woody must deal with the possibility that for once he's not the favourite toy, until into his life comes Forkie, an invention of popsicle sticks, clay, and a spork who becomes a reluctant member of the gang. But is that the end of the story? Far from it...

End Credits is on CFRU 93.3 fm and Wednesday at 2 pm.

GUELPH POLITICAST #175 - In Conversation at Guelph Civic Museum


It's been three-and-a-half years since the Guelph Mercury last published, but for many people in our community, the loss feels as fresh today as it did on January 30, 2016. What a community looks like without a daily paper, and how it gets its news without that baseline has been a frequent topic of discussion, and it was again last week at the Guelph Civic Museum.

The Museum has two exhibits on now called “B&W and Read All Over" and “The Dailies: Front Pages & Frontispieces.” The former is about the Mercury itself, and the later reveals how the Mercury contextualized national and global events for local readers. For decades newspapers have provided this important context for our lives, but what do we do in a world with fewer and fewer newspapers?

This question, and many, many more, was put to a panel of local experts last Wednesday at the Guelph Civic Museum, and Guelph Politico's Adam A. Donaldson was one of them. Along with former Mercury and reporter Rob O’Flanagan, senior research associate at the Centre for International Governance Innovation and former Mercury journalist Stephanie MacLellan, Waterloo Region Record photojournalist Mathew McCarthy, graphic novelist and cartoonist Seth, there was a conversation about "Newspapers Past, Present and Future?” Former Guelph Mercury managing editor Phil Andrews moderated.

This week's podcast is the some 90-minute discussion that flowed from that question. The panel covered a wide variety of topics including what we lose with the closure of newspaper offices, the effect of losing community newspapers on our discourse and on our democracy, and what the future of local journalism might look like and how we’re going to pay for it.

So let's talk about the past, present and future of local media on this week's edition of the Guelph Politicast!

“B&W and Read All Over“ and “The Dailies: Front Pages & Frontispieces” can be found at the Guelph Civic Museum during business hours - Tuesday to Sunday from 10 am to 5 pm - from now until September.

The host for the Guelph Politicast is Podbean. Find more episodes of the Politicast here, or download them on your favourite podcast app at iTunes, Stitcher, Google Play, and Spotify.

Also, when you subscribe to the Guelph Politicast channel and you will also get an episode of Open Sources Guelph every Monday, and an episode of End Credits every Friday.

Open Sources Guelph - June 27, 2019


This week on Open Sources Guelph is no jaunty burger flipping affair. Of course, we weren't the ones demoted from being finance minister after just one budget, but it's hard to believe that's a cause for celebration. We're going to cover the upheaval at Queen's Park last week, and speaking of disasters, we'll revisit the Trump White House again. In the back half of the show, we'll look at the ongoing concerns of election security, and the potentially greater threat of nuclear power (or is it a threat?).

This Thursday, June 27, at 5 pm, Scotty Hertz and Adam A. Donaldson will discuss:

The French Disconnection. Late last week, Premier Doug Ford tried to hit the reset button on his barely one-year old administration by shuffling all but seven people in his cabinet, including some of its most high-profile members. Then he announced new economic envoys with plum six-figure salaries, and all was well until it was discovered that two of those people had personal connections to chief of staff Dean French, who suddenly realized it was time to go back to the private sector. What next for Doug and Co.?

Great Generals. The Iran situation has some how gotten both worse and better. In retaliation for the shooting down of an unmanned drone, U.S. President Donald Trump decided to launch a counterattack, but ended up scrubbing the mission with 10 minutes to spare when he asked out of idle curiosity what the casualty estimates would be. In the meantime, Trump is being pushed to act by chicken hawks in his administration, while some of his Fox News friends and other Republican urge restraint. So there's that, and we've ran out or room to talk about the new rape allegation...

We're Still Not Safe. Elections experts are warning (again) that this fall's Federal Election is going to be highly vulnerable to all sorts of social media interference. In all, it seems like Facebook, Twitter et al have not learned the lessons of 2016, and have still left us all vulnerable, through in-action, to the same fake news, fake players, DDOS attacks, and other sorts of bad actors on the internet be they domestic or foreign. How concerned should we be about the integrity of our election, and is anyone in authority going do anything?

Free Nuclear?Globe and Mail opinion piece tried to make the case to go nuclear, which is to say revisit nuclear power as a viable alternative to our energy concerns as we try and reduce our carbon footprint. It's been decades since nuclear has been seen as a viable method to solve future energy needs, but the recent HBO miniseries Chernobyl reminded us that the dangers with nuclear power are considerable, and its not entirely "clean" either. So what do we think? Is it time to reconsider the past and think nuclear for the future?

Open Sources is live on CFRU 93.3 fm and at 5 pm on Thursday.

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