What Is A Nation?

January 30, 2018 Uncategorized Comments (0) 488

Canadian nationalism has historically had a difficult relationship with the idea of the nation itself. Are we a nation? Or a land of many nations? Most prominent in this discussion has been the question of French Canada.

In this essay, I will argue that both Quebec and Canada are nations. I will examine what the definitions of ‘nation’ are. I will then argue which types of nation, or combination thereof, are more robust than others. The central question can then be answered as to what type of nation Quebec and Canada each are, and how they fit together; answering this question will draw on defining the past of each nationhood, and follow into speculating on their future.

One will usually see a ‘nation’ defined as roughly ‘a large aggregate of people with common characteristics’, and this is generally correct – but of course leaves much to be defined. ‘Nation’ is derived from the Latin natio, which translates to ‘birth’, and is related to concepts such as people, tribe, race, class, stock, breed, etc. As one can see, the rough definition fits the etymology insofar as it denotes classifying large groups of people. Continue Reading

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The State of Arms: Evaluating Canada’s Military

January 25, 2018 Uncategorized Comments (2) 846

It will come as a surprise to some that the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) are to this day regarded as a qualitatively good military by our allies. In 10 years of counter-insurgency in Afghanistan, Canada successfully managed to contain the Taliban threat in the Kandahar province, one of the more troubled provinces in Afghanistan’s volatile south. However, such success happened despite governmental mismanagement which had our troops insert themselves within a desert theatre of operations wearing green camouflage and without adequate heavy equipment. It would be a truism to state that our forces have now made a science of doing more with less given the government’s propensity towards a slash and burn approach when it comes to the military.

One might also note, not without a hint of sadness, that the incessant round of cuts turned a once respectable pillar of the allies – that could go toe-to-toe with Waffen SS divisions – into a bit player, capable of bringing nothing more than a few good men to the table. It wouldn’t be altogether cynical, as we mentioned in an earlier article, to also assume that the debasement of the Canadian Armed Forces as a pillar of Canadian culture and tradition was a wholly deliberate move by the progressive forces in Canada incarnated in the Liberal Party.

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Book Review: The Other North America

January 2, 2018 Book Reviews Comments (0) 1192

In order to understand Canada, it is essential to understand North America. The vast continent on which Canada and its neighbours stand is the geopolitical reality which has shaped our history. Settlement, ideological conflict, and the competition between British-Canadian and American expansion westward shaped the development of both cultures and institutions. This means that deep ties of heritage, culture, and political traditions continue to exist between the various regions of Canada and the United States. Our branch of global European civilization is continental in nature.

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Disdain And Mismanagement: A Century in the Life of Our Armed Forces

December 21, 2017 Uncategorized Comments (0) 551

Another week, another defense procurement blunder by the Liberal Party of Canada (LPC). This time it is the much-maligned jet procurement file. After unwisely canning the F-35 acquisition plans as per their election promise, the government found itself in a bind. Trudeau’s puzzling electoral announcement came back to bite them in the hind parts. While a free and fair competition would be held, the F-35 would not be included in such competition (for whatever reason). This commitment was nothing more than blatant electioneering, an attempt by the then third party to capitalize on the generally negative public perception of the F-35 file helped along by a healthy dose of disinformation by our state media. Excluding the contradictory aspect of this statement (how can a competition arbitrarily exclude one product and still be called fair and transparent), it created a rather complex problem for Harjit Sajjan’s DND. While the F-35 is likely the only reasonable option if we wish to operate a fifth-generation fighter and keep Canada current in the air power department, the boss just eliminated that option for the sake of differentiating himself from the opposition.

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Canada and the Geopolitics of Restoration

December 18, 2017 Uncategorized Comments (0) 509

Photo credit: A night time shot of the Toronto skyline. Photo/Timur Gabaidulin. Follow Timur’s work here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/tgiam/7756964304/in/dateposted/

One of the results of North America’s security between two oceans has been a lack of geopolitical thinking. There is even a school of thought – encouraged by Alexander Dugin and similar writers – that America and the Anglosphere receive cultural traits like individualism and ideological thinking from their oceanic existence. On the flipside, Russia and other land civilizations think religiously and geopolitically, analyzing in terms of power and not ideology. But let’s dig beyond that. In fact, Canada has always by necessity thought more geopolitically than its southern neighbour. This is to no small extent because of the proximity of said neighbour – we are Pierre Trudeau’s mouse in the shadow of the elephant. Our whole policy from the American Rebellion, through the Imperial era, up until the turning focus on Pacific relations, has been forwarded with the fact of our continental neighbourhood in mind. Unfortunately, geopolitics in the Canadian mind has been reduced primarily to military and economic matters. Since the end of the cold war, the latter has dominated. But in this age of strife across global borders, we must increasingly consider a more civilizational approach to geopolitics. In this piece, we will consider Canada’s position as an opportunity.

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Thanksgiving: A Common Inheritance

October 9, 2017 Uncategorized Comments (0) 634

It comes as no surprise that Thanksgiving should have taken root in North America. With similar festivals having deep roots across Europe, it was only natural for communities with their survival at stake to give thanks for what bounties they received. Today, it is one of the inheritances from old Europe which still binds together Canada and the United States. The date has varied between time and places, but the tradition has stood firm. Although less prominent in Quebec, similar days “l’action de grâce” were proclaimed on such occasions as peaces reached between France and England, and the anniversary of the 1837 revolts.

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Deus Ex Machina: Tradition and the Essence of Technology

October 4, 2017 Uncategorized Comments (1) 597

How is a traditionalist to treat his relationship to technology? For a tool destined to set us free and bring about world-wide enlightenment, technology has been largely a force of imprisonment for the masses. As the title of this essay suggests, technology was envisioned to be a literal “Deus Ex Machina”: our salvation and means to achieve peace here on Earth, and this is a point that the so-called “post-humanists” (Kurzweil, Zuckerberg, and so on) will not shy away from, although they stop just at the boundary of naming this force, this phenomenon, their own artificial Christ.

But those of us who yet retain or have salvaged some participatory and real relationship to the divine’s presence in the world are confronted with a reality in which we too are caught up within the bounds of this overwhelming and forward-seeking force. The technological is inherently tied to the philosophies which were its boon and nurturing soil. The hyper-rationalism and instrumentality of the Enlightenment has been so ingrained in the very operation and understanding of technology that it becomes very difficult for one to view the phenomenon from a non-technological perspective. Continue Reading

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Doorways to Restoration: A Reflection on Canada

August 6, 2017 Symposium 2017 Comments (0) 953

The following essay is part of Northern Dawn’s Symposium for Canada’s 150th anniversary. The theme is Canada: Who Are We? We hope these studies of Canada’s heritage will inspire readers to consider its future, and the broader civilization of which it is a part. Those who rule must know what they are ruling.

In this last essay, Mark Christensen gives final thoughts on the Symposium and reflects on the value Northern Dawn sees in the traditions of Canada.

When we decided to hold the first Northern Dawn symposium, we were shooting in the dark. After all, we’d just begun to set out some topics of investigation for Canadians who have apostatized from our world’s current orthodoxies. Would we be able to provide work of substance? Continue Reading

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More Than A Tory Touch: A Survey of Canadian Writing

July 31, 2017 Symposium 2017 Comments (1) 905

The following essay is part of Northern Dawn’s Symposium for Canada’s 150th anniversary. The theme is Canada: Who Are We? We hope these studies of Canada’s heritage will inspire readers to consider its future, and the broader civilization of which it is a part. Those who rule must know what they are ruling.

The following essay is by Ron Dart. In addition to regular contributions to the journal Clarion, he has written and taught widely about the High Tory tradition, its religious and cultural heritage, and its impact on Canadian life. His most recent book is The North American High Tory Tradition, reviewed here.

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The publication of Gad Horowitz’s “Conservatism, Liberalism, and Socialism in Canada: An Interpretation” in 1966 created an immense flurry and stir amongst political theorists and activists. Most had assumed that Canadian conservatism was just a variant of American conservatism and, in the USA at the time, the Goldwater-Kirk combination of conservatism would be much the same in Canada. Continue Reading

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Canada, Tradition, and Government

July 22, 2017 Symposium 2017 Comments (0) 1012

The following essay is part of Northern Dawn’s Symposium for Canada’s 150th anniversary. The theme is Canada: Who Are We? We hope these studies of Canada’s heritage will inspire readers to consider its future, and the broader civilization of which it is a part. Those who rule must know what they are ruling.

The following essay is by Cole Dutton. Cole blogs at The Dominion Standard about a variety of traditionalist and conservative themes.

The traditionalist Canadian often faces a certain type of assertion roughly analogous to ‘why is that the role of the government?’ Or ‘the government deserves no part in that.’ Now, aside from market considerations, it becomes very difficult to respond to such assertions in a succinct and cogent fashion. It is the aim then of this piece to take a glance backwards at Canada and its liberal political discourse and contrast it with the principal notion of intellectual and political conservatism: the assertion that government for conservatives has an end or purpose specific to it. This position enables one to see the importance of government in asking the critical question fielded by Northern Dawn in response to Canada 150. And that question is ‘who are we?’ Continue Reading

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