Archive for the ‘Politics’ Category


September 22, 2016

Exchange on CJAD with host Neil McKenty


Today’s show is on Quebec politics in the 50’s and in more modern time with guess Gérald Pelletier and of course the live callers.

Visit the Bookshop: click here.

Jean P.


September 19, 2016



Exchange on CJAD with host Neil McKenty.



The subject of the show today is, Lemons and Laurels.





Jean P.


January 12, 2016



Lets continue last week’s writing conversation.


Building Community


Much to my surprise, I received a letter back from Neil within a week.  He just assumed that my husband and I had the necessary strength of spirit that it takes, and would manage through this rather frightening time.   His words gave us hope, and his assurance that the Montreal Children’s Hospital was a wonderful health care facility gave us confidence.  We began our journey through the process of repairing Erin’s lip.

As time went on, I would update Neil on Erin’s progress.  I sent him pictures of my beautiful girl.  Life has a way of getting in the way, and years slipped by.  Then I was looking at wedding pictures of Erin and her husband, and remembered Neil, and that it had been a while since I had had any contact with him.  I sat down, put pen to paper, and filled Neil in on what had transpired, and how we loved our new son-in-law.  Neil always replied to my letters and appreciated the pictures and updates.  I felt that he was my friend.

Neil touched my life as I am sure he did with many of his friends and listeners.  His letters showed compassion and understanding and encouraged me when I needed encouragement.  Watching your child disappear into an operating room, spending hours in the waiting room, can leave one feeling helpless.  Having support is vital.  I was blessed in that I had a strong connection with my husband and family.  But having support from someone outside that circle is important too.  The whole process was foreign to us.  Today, when I look at my lovely daughter (artist, wife, and mother), I know how lucky I am.  That Neil took such an interest in an anonymous caller added to our coping skills.

In 1982 Frank Gallagher nominated Neil as a ”Great Montrealer.”  ”He is the host of one of the city’s leading talk shows.  His ability to handle all types of subjects, and give his audience the time to express their opinions, is always handled in the most gracious manner.  His tolerance with the senior citizens, who are often very nervous when on the radio, is very heartwarming.  Whenever he speaks with children, he never talks down to them and always treats them as equals.  May callers keep his lines blazing.  May he never run out of fuel.”

A Christmas to Remember

One morning just before Christmas 1983, Neil was having breakfast when he heard that, as a result of corporate funding cuts, Ville Marie Social Services would be unable to provide food baskets for about 4,000 families.  Neil immediately decided to do something about it.  But he was aware of the risk.  What if he raised the issue on ”Exchange” and no one called in?  Among his first callers were his neighbours, Gail and Gerald Fellerath, who had both served in the Peace Corps.  They phoned in to say they would open a drop-off food depot at their store called Folklore on Sherbrooke St. in Westmount.  Then the superintendent of an apartment building in the east end said he would do the same.  A woman from Rosemere said she would drive people down to that depot.  (A third of Neil’s listeners at the time were francophone).  The appeal snowballed.

Stoph Hallward, a grade school student, volunteered to go door-to-door with a friend to collect canned food.  He recalls that Neil’s efforts set off a chain reaction throughout the city.

”Neil McKenty stood out among my parents’ friends when I was growing up,”  Hallward wrote.  ”It was exciting to know someone I could hear on the radio, but when I think back on it, he never sounded any different hosting his own show than he did challenging my family in friendly banter around the dinner table.  His being so so himself was probably what gave me the confidence to call him on his show, once.  My friend Roddy and I, who went door-to-door in our neighbourhood collecting canned food.  It was an easy sell and everyone gave generously.  Neil and Catharine drove down to Ville Marie headquarters where they were met by a social worker, tears streaming down her face.  ”I’ve never seen anything like it,” she said.  That Christmas, thanks to Neil, four thousand families were fed.”

Jean P.








December 16, 2015


Hosted by Neil McKenty on CJAD.

This episode focused on child day care.

* Adjust your volume.



Jean P.


December 9, 2015

Brand New Edition


Neil McKenty Live! The lines are still blazing.

A brand new edition is now available get it here:click here


A special thanks to Light Messages Publishing in Durham, North Carolina.

Here’s a link to their website: Light Messages



Jean P.


December 2, 2015



Here is one of the many episode of Exchange, Neil’s radio talk show on CJAD.  A two hour show that he hosted from 1977 to 1985 to go pursue other interests.

This one was on dirty politics or hovering around that.


* Adjust your volume



Jean P.





November 25, 2015

7 Things Trudeau’s pot legalization must include

We now have a prime minister who has promised to legalize marijuana in Canada. But what will legalization look like? Here’s seven things the cannabis community wants to see happen before we consider prohibition to be truly over.

7. Don’t increase penalties

In some of their campaign literature, the Liberals were promising to create “new, stronger laws, to punish more severely” people who sell cannabis to minors, or to anyone operating outside of their undefined new system.

Considering we already have Harper’s strict mandatory minimums for cannabis offences, we do not need to be punishing anyone “more severely” for anything related to cannabis.

The laws and penalties against selling cannabis to minors should be very similar to those relating to alcohol. The whole legalization system for cannabis should follow the wine model, not some new system that includes even more harsh punishments for cannabis.

The Liberals must reject the idea that they need to add new, harsher cannabis laws to balance out legalization.

6. Allow personal growing

Any model of legalization must include the right to grow some cannabis for personal use. Colorado allows every adult to grow up to six cannabis plants for their own use, or to share with friends and family. That would be a good start for Canadians.

People with a doctor’s recommendation for cannabis should be allowed to grow whatever quantity they need for medical purposes. The Conservatives tried to shut down the current home-garden program for patients, but were stopped by a court injunction. That injunction needs to remain, and be expanded to make it easier for patients to grow their own when needed.

Growing cannabis indoors under lights should be subject to municipal bylaws if it is a complex, multi-light system. But growing a few cannabis plants on your porch or in your backyard should not be subject to any special rules or restrictions.

If home cultivation is not allowed, then cannabis is not truly legalized in Canada. Canadians must have at least as much right to grow their own cannabis as they do to brew their own beer and wine.

5. Allow dispensaries

There are now hundreds of cannabis dispensaries open across Canada, and we can expect a huge rush of them to open over the coming months with the change in government.

The Liberals need to recognize the important role that community-based dispensaries are playing, and to incorporate them into any legal access system.

Most of the needed regulation of dispensaries will happen at the provincial and municipal level. But the federal government needs to frame their legalization legislation in such a way as to allow these dispensaries to become fully legitimate.

Any system of legalization that tries to shut down the existing network of cannabis dispensaries will face strong opposition from Canada’s cannabis community.

4. License more producers

Along with the dispensaries, there needs to be a much larger amount of legal cannabis available. The two dozen currently licensed producers that exist to supply the medical market should be able to enter into the retail market. More importantly, the hundreds of applicants who have been waiting into limbo need to be quickly processed and approved.

Whatever the details of the system, it is important that there is equal access to the cannabis market, and that anyone who meets the quality standards can legally grow and sell cannabis.

Growers who currently supply dispensaries should be able to receive a licence and continue what they do, as long as they meet some minimum safety and quality standards.

Ultimately, the federal government should get out of licensing large-scale production and leave that to the provinces. But whoever the regulating and licensing authority is, the system needs to be fair and equal. Any attempt to limit production to a few major companies or create some kind of monopoly or cartel will be met with resistance, and will ultimately fail.

3. Ditch the medical program

Cannabis is a wonderful medicine with a wide range of therapeutic benefits, but we don’t need a specialized medical cannabis system in Canada. Cannabis extracts should be available as non-prescription drugs for all Canadians to access.

When cannabis or a cannabis extract is prescribed by a doctor then it should be exempt from GST, like other prescription drugs. But we don’t need the current complex system of restricted access for medical patients once all Canadians have access to legal cannabis.

Doctors should become more knowledgeable about cannabis medicines, and legalization should mean that all sorts of new cannabis extracts are readily available for research and medicine. But since cannabis is generally safer than products like aspirin, most cannabis medicines should be sold over the counter, without a need for a prescription.

2. Amnesty for past convictions

Legalization of cannabis must also include an amnesty for past cannabis convictions, so that those criminal records are erased from the system.

All possession convictions should be erased and pardons granted without question. This would be the bare minimum to begin undoing some of the harm that prohibition has caused.

For trafficking and cultivation convictions, there should be a simple process for people to apply to have those criminal records erased as well, as long as no violent or other significant crimes were also committed.

1. Don’t overtax it

There will be a temptation to tax cannabis very heavily, so as to maximize government revenue and limit consumption by keeping the price high. This would be a mistake.

Legal cannabis needs to be cheaper and better than what is currently available, or else no-one is going to buy it. The only way to extinguish the black market is to substantially reduce the price of cannabis.

Like wine or beer, there should be different prices or cannabis, depending on where it is sold. Plants grown at home for personal use should be untaxed. A cannabis brownie for dessert at a fancy restaurant could be considerably more expensive.

Any plan for legalization must not include extremely high or punitive taxes, as the result will be a thriving black market and no real change to the status quo.

If Trudeau’s Liberals stick to these seven principles then legalization will be a success.

But if they try to legalize cannabis in the form of a highly taxed product grown only by big corporations, while banning home gardens and increasing penalties for underground dealers, then legalization will not succeed, and we will still have to keep fighting for a better system.


Source: Huff Post

Dan Larsen, Director, Sensible BC Campaign for Marijuana Reform, Vancouver’s medical cannabis dispensary.


What do you think?




November 9, 2015

Originally posted on may 5th 2011.

In the wake of Michael Ignatieff’s sad resignation, names are already being bruited about as to who might succeed him.  These include Dominic Leblanc  from the Maritimes, Ralph Goodale from Saskatchewan, Bob Rae from Toronto and a couple of  back-benchers from British Columbia.  With the possible exception of Rae, none of them are household names.

But there is a household name.  It’s Trudeau, Justin.  He is 40 years old and already has one session of parliament under his belt.  He shares his father’s underpinnings and general liberal philosophy.

If ever the Liberal party needed a bolt of lightning to regenerate what was once boastfully proclaimed “Canada’s natural governing party, it is now.  The only  one who might be able to create the cult of leadership that Canadians so crave is Justin Trudeau.  It will not be the likes of Bob Rae, or Denis Coderre, or Frank McKenna.

Is Justin  Trudeau up to it?  With a  young family, is it worth it?  Does he have what  his father had?  Will he be true to his father’s ideals?

By the time of the next federal election, four years hence, Justin Trudeau will be 44, at the height of his powers?  Should he throw his hat in the ring?

Is it Trudeau’s time?

What do you think?



October 21, 2015

Here is a post from Neil on elections

We are now in the home stretch of the Canadian.  We vote two weeks from today.

Do you detect a rising enthusiasm in the electorate as we approach the finish.  I must confess I  don’t.

Consider the debates.  Up there behind the podium were four dark suits, four tasteful ties, four grey beards, four middle-class white men.  No women, no ethnic groups represented.  Our only choice is to put another middle-aged white man in charge of our government.

Wouldn’t a woman candidate or a person of colour shake up that drab picture.

No major issue has emerged during the campaign unless it is Harper’s drive for a majority.

Is our election dull?  Compared to the Americans.

Remember their 2008 campaign.  Hillary Clinton and Sarah Palin fighting it out for women, a man of colour emerging as the first black president in the United States.

Or consider the would-be candidates thinking about running for 2012.  Palin again, Michele Bachman, Trump and several others.

Why is there so much colour in American politics, so little in ours?

Is our election dull?

What do you think?

originally posted 18/04/2011


September 9, 2015

The other night three of us where spellbound listening to the song ” Harperman ” that is going viral on the internet.

In June of this year, Tony Turner, an Ottawa folksinger recorded a song out of protest against the Conservative government of S. Harper. Along with Ann Downey on bass and the Crowd of Well Wishers choir.


Have you heard it yet?

Have you ever in your life heard of a political song like it?

What’s your opinion?



View the video here:click here