What if the Canada-China investment treaty is unconstitutional?

The Canada-China investment treaty (a.k.a. the Foreign Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement) is a questionable deal for Canada, wrote Gus Van Harten, a professor at York’s Osgoode Hall Law School, in The Globe and Mail Oct. 23. Most important, it has key implications for the constitutional role of the provinces, first nations and superior courts.

Lincoln Alexander, 90, Canadian Trailblazer
Lincoln Alexander, the son of a hotel maid and railway porter who became Canada’s first black member of Parliament and first black cabinet minister, died on Friday in Hamilton, Ontario. He was 90, reported The New York Times Oct. 23. After working as a machinist and being a wireless operator for the Royal Canadian Air Force, he studied history and economics at McMaster University in Hamilton, graduating in 1949. He earned a law degree in 1953 from Osgoode Hall Law School of York University. He was a partner in one of Canada’s first interracial law firms before winning election to Parliament.

Charbonneau Commission: Some promising anti-corruption measures have already been put forward
It may be true, as Montreal executive committee chairman Michael Applebaum said recently, that in a city with 29,000 employees there are bound to be a few who are corrupt and dishonest, reported The Montreal Gazette Oct. 23. Or as York University law professor and organized-crime expert Margaret Beare put it, “Whenever you’ve got an opportunity to make a lot of money, people are going to be corrupt.” 

Masked critters still get a pass in Toronto
The trouble is, writes Margaret Wente in The Globe and Mail Oct. 23, we have unwittingly bred the most successful, most competitive raccoons in the history of the species. York University’s Suzanne MacDonald, an expert in animal behaviour, calls them über-raccoons. “Urban raccoons have had many generations of dealing with opening garbage cans, prying open windows, eavestroughs, pet doors, garages and the like,” she told me. Thanks to these evolutionary pressures, they’re getting smarter faster than we are.

Psy In Toronto: Gangnam Style Star Coming To Canada
Better get your bowties and wind machines ready. Psy, the Korean pop star behind huge hit Gangnam Style, is making his debut in Toronto on Oct. 30 at a concert to celebrate the release of Samsung’s Galaxy Note 2, reported The Huffington Post Oct. 22. We also hope that York University’s infamous Gangnam Style dancer David Kim makes an appearance. Ten years ago, Martha Jack’s profession didn’t exist.

Man and machine: GenY combines creativity and passion with technology
Catering to the demands of the marketplace can have a profoundly negative effect on Canada’s postsecondary education, according to Paul Axelrod, professor in the Faculty of Education at York University, reported The Globe and Mail Oct. 22. Axelrod’s book, Values in Conflict: the University, the Marketplace, and the Trials of Liberal Education, stresses that the constant focus on being technologically advanced and producing “knowledge workers” has put liberal arts education at risk – and these degrees have great value.

Do employers recruit from your school?
Canada’s biggest schools, such as the University of Toronto, York University or the University of British Columbia, appear to have better opportunities to connect with employers – they can simply reach more students from more programs on one campus, reported The Globe and Mail Oct. 22.