The Plague-Ground – Save the performing hearts

This Sunday, you can't have dinner in a restaurant in Toronto, but you can in New York City. Governor Andrew Cuomo decided last week to allow partial- capacity indoor dining there because Valentine's Day is one of the biggest restaurant…
Cayce Clifford

The Plague-Ground – Most Seers See Wrong

That doesn't stop us from believing them, and acting on their pronouncements as if they were wrapped in a bodyguard of truth. I'm not talking about fake newshounds and grifters. I'm speaking of experts - economists, heads of think…

The Plague-Ground – Why Justin Trudeau Drives Me Nuts

By a large margin, most Canadians voted against Justin Trudeau in the last election. Or at least the Liberal Party he leads. They won only 33% of the popular vote, the lowest percentage for any governing party in Canadian history. I'm…

The Plague-Ground – How baked-in bias cooks chaos

Back in 2018, Barack Obama claimed publicly that “President Trump is a total and complete dipshit.” No, he did. Really. Watch it here. That was one of the very first Deep Fake Videos in the world. But in the past two years, the technology…

The Plague-Ground – Are you an elite, or a professional, or neither, or both?

Right now Roland King is in the woods behind our cottage, clearing brush in the bitter cold, sawing it, stacking it and selling it back to us as firewood. Roland just turns up, often working in the dark, always working for cash. Few people know…

The Plague-Ground – One Way to Close the Power Gap

Four years ago, Robyn Doolittle wrote a series for the Globe and Mail called Unfounded. That word is stamped on sexual assault cases closed by police for lack of evidence. After a 20-month investigation, Doolittle found that one in five reported…

The Plague-Ground – “Give me your tired and your poor…”

In just a few hours last week, Joe Biden began dismantling what Donald Trump took four years to build up. This made Sleepy Joe one of the fastest 78-year olds in America. His 30 executive orders included rejoining the Paris Climate Accord,…

The Plague-Ground – The Girl With the Speech Impediment

Amanda Gorman is as different from Donald Trump as any American can be. She’s young and Black and smart and funny and self-effacing and beautiful. She was raised by her mother, a middle school teacher, in Los Angeles. She got into Harvard…

The Plague-Ground – A Primer on Pedophiles

Sexual perversity is not what I thought I’d be writing about on this morning in America when the Presidency passes from a mentally-ill person to a sane and decent one. But the QAnon Movement has grown since its birth in 2017 from an unhinged…

The Plague-Ground – I see you. I know you. I jail you. I kill you.

We’ve all met someone we instantly dislike – even before they open their mouths. It’s not that you’re total strangers. A mutual friend is introducing you. But as the three of you stand there, there’s just something about him (or…

The Plague-Ground – How to divert – and defend – yourself this weekend.

Enough of reality. It makes my head hurt. We’re all locked-down. It’s not even February. So rather than writing about plagues and insurrections, today’s Plague-Ground will be unimpeachably and giddily about you. Here are some ways to…

The Plague-Ground – Stupid White Men

Remember the shirtless, horned rioter who carried his 6-foot spear into the US Senate chamber last Wednesday? Jake Angeli is 32-years old and lives in Phoenix. He’s an unsuccessful actor and voice-over artist who’s now an entrepreneur,…

The Plague-Ground – Trump in the Bunker

No, Donald Trump is not Adolf Hitler. The Republican Party is not the Nazis, and America is not the Third Reich. But in these fiery last days of America’s first seditious President, there is a sense that The White House will become the President’s…

The Plague-Ground – Strike 4. We’re out.

“Where were you when….?” Yesterday was one of those days. I’d chalked up two of them in the past four years, to balance the two engraved in my brain for many years: November 22, 1963, when President John F. Kennedy was assassinated,…

The Plague-Ground – A Masterclass in Thuggery

I urge you to set aside an hour of your life to listen to a man whom you likely disdain and whose predations account for untold misery in America today -- especially this very day. I want you to listen to Donald Trump’s phone call last…

The Plague-Ground – A shot in the arm

The vaccine’s no longer coming. It’s here. The trouble is, its presence is as spotty and enduring as our response to the pandemic itself. And by “here,” I don’t just mean Canada, but the world. EU leaders on the weekend rushed…

The Plague-Ground – We’re seeing other people.

What one word sums up your year? Mine isn’t ‘COVID’ or ‘coronavirus’, even though those words appeared in half the stories in the New York Times and four-fifths of them in The Economist – by late March. No, the word that sums…

The Plague-Ground – Where will you be in the hour after sunset today?

I urge you and your family to go outside, point your eyes to the southwest sky and behold something no human has seen since the year 1226, and none will see again until 2080. Jupiter and Saturn will be so close together, as wide as a toothpick…