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The Great Flag Debate

The long and often bitter debate over the new Canadian flag began in the House of Commons on 15 June 1964. It ended by closure on 15 December 1964. Feelings ran high among many English Canadians. Opposition leader John Diefenbaker demanded that the flag honour Canada’s “founding races” and feature the Union Jack. Prime Minister Lester B. Pearson insisted on a design that conveyed allegiance to Canada while avoiding colonial association. A prolonged, heated debate ensued. Historian Rick Archbold described it as “among the ugliest in the House of Commons history.” The new flag, designed by George Stanley with final touches by graphic artist Jacques Saint-Cyr, was approved on 15 December 1964 by a vote of 163 to 78. The royal proclamation was signed by Queen Elizabeth II on 28 January 1965. The national flag was officially unfurled on 15 February 1965.

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Société des Fils de la liberté

Founded in Montréal on 5 September 1837, the Société des Fils de la liberté was a paramilitary group affiliated with the Patriotes, formed in response to growing frustration among the Parti patriote and its supporters that political reform in Lower Canada was taking too long. Their aim was to support and protect the Patriotes. Borrowing their name from the American revolutionary secret society known as the Sons of Liberty, the group included some of the most important members of the party, including Louis-Joseph Papineau and Edmund Bailey O’Callaghan. In Montréal, the group was opposed by the English-speaking paramilitary group the Doric Club, which led to a violent confrontation on 6 November 1837. The group disbanded shortly afterwards and many of its members went on to participate in the Canadian Rebellion.

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Department of Finance

The Department of Finance Canada is the federal government's main engine of research, advice and analysis on national economic and financial affairs, including fiscal policy, debt management and taxation.

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Finance Act

Finance Act, August 1914, emergency measure ending Canada's GOLD STANDARD and giving the Department of Finance new powers.

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Filibuster

Filibuster, the use of delaying tactics, used most often by the Opposition, in a parliamentary body. Opposition filibusterers speak as often and as long as possible, raising many points of privilege and order to prevent votes they expect to lose.

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Durham Report

In 1838, the British politician Lord Durham was sent to British North America to investigate the causes of the rebellions of 1837–38 in the colonies of Upper and Lower Canada. Durham's famous Report on the Affairs of British North America (1839) led to a series of reforms and changes. These included uniting the two Canadas into a single colony, the Province of Canada, in 1841. (See also: Act of Union.) The report also paved the way for responsible government. This was a critical step in the development of Canadian democracy. The report played an important role in the evolution of Canada’s political independence from Britain.

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The Donnellys

Early in the morning of 4 Feb 1880, a party of armed men brutally murdered James Donnelly, a farmer living near the village of LUCAN, Ont, his wife Johannah, his sons Thomas and John, and his niece Bridget Donnelly.

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Dower

Dower refers to a form of marital property right. In its ancient form dower entitled a widow to a life interest in a portion of the lands owned by her deceased husband. Widowers were accorded similar rights, known as "curtesy.

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Fascism

Fascism is a term often loosely used to describe military dictatorships and extreme right-wing governments and organizations (or individuals) known to be either violently anticommunist or violently anti-Semitic, or both.

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Film Distribution in Canada

Film distribution is one of the three main branches of the film industry. It provides the link between film production and exhibition. It is also the most profitable of the three sectors and is dominated by large multinational conglomerates. Film distribution companies supply movies, television programs, videos and new media to outlets such as cinemas and broadcasters. They do so in territories where they have acquired rights from the producers. Traditionally, distribution companies are the prime source for financing new productions. The distribution sector has been called “the invisible art.” Its practices tend to only concern industry insiders and go unnoticed by audiences. American companies dominate film distribution in Canada. They have controlled access to Canadian screens since the 1920s. (See also: Canadian Film History: 1896 to 1938.)

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Federal-Provincial Relations

Many of the concerns of modern government cut across the loose jurisdictional boundaries found in the constitution. National purposes can often only be achieved with provincial co-operation; provincial goals often require federal assistance.

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Estey Commission

The Estey Commission was an inquiry into the collapse of the CANADIAN COMMERCIAL BANK (CCB) and the Northland Bank. The Honourable Willard Z.

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Farm Law

In Canada more than 90% of farm businesses are family-owned operations; these operations involve about one million people.

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Electoral Behaviour

Not infrequently, elections in Canada produce results that surprise. A volatile and unforgiving electorate can quickly humble parties and politicians that take its support for granted. The 1993 federal election is one such example of a sudden and dramatic reversal of political fortunes.

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Defence Counsel

Defence counsel, lawyer who advises accused (defendants in civil cases) and presents their case to the court, ensuring that clients have a fair trial. If a client is convicted, the defence counsel speaks in respect of sentence.

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Crown Land

Crown land is the term used to describe land owned by the federal or provincial governments. Authority for control of these public lands rests with the Crown, hence their name. Less than 11% of Canada's land is in private hands; 41% is federal crown land and 48% is provincial crown land.