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50 Canadians Who Changed the World: this really happened!

Hard to believe that four years have passed since we boarded a west-bound train called The Canadian in Toronto. We were celebrating 50 Canadians Who Changed the World – both the book and the individuals so designated, most of whom are alive and thriving -- by following in the tracks of those who linked this nation from the Atlantic Ocean to the Pacific. We called this endeavor The VIA-Rail, Cross-Canada, Ocean-to-Ocean, Book-Tour Extravaganza.
Faithful readers of this blog (hi, mom!) will know that Our Hero made stops in Winnipeg, Saskatoon, Calgary, Canmore, Banff, and Jasper. After enduring many hardships and overcoming countless obstacles (ahem), he reached Vancouver, made his way to English Bay and, carrying a copy of his new book (which paints a vivid portrait of cutting-edge Canada, if I do say so myself), waded into the Pacific Ocean.
Then came the second leg of the train journey, traveling on VIA-Rail’s “Ocean”: Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal, Halifax. One afternoon, acting on the advice of locals, and assisted by a trio of volunteers, Our Hero made his way to Point Pleasant Park. There, despite a steady rain and a rocky shoreline that would have deterred a less intrepid author, he waded into the Atlantic Ocean, thus accomplishing his declared objective: ocean-to-ocean.  He was tempted to build a cairn, but decided to wait until he next visited the third ocean.
Of those I wrote about in this book, let's see. Sheila Watt-Cloutier has since published a bestseller called The Right to be Cold. Naomi Klein is preparing to launch a new book, No is Not Enough, in which she argues that Trump is extreme . . . but not a Martian. And Leonard Cohen has left the building. You know he would want us to party on!
(Pix by Sheena Fraser McGoogan)

Ken McGoogan
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The Canadian future of Scotland links UK, Quebec, China, Estonia

The Canadian future of Scotland? The 23 links below show how this idea played out. Do we have a take-away? Well, apparently you can write more than a dozen books, each of them running between 90,000 and 140,000 words, and find yourself beating through a starless night to find an audience. OR you can spin off 600 words and watch them spiral into the cyber-sky like fireworks. Who knew?

CTV Videos: 

From Toronto . . .
From Scotland, Ontario. . . 

Original blog post (170 words): Let's invite Scotland to join Canada
Globe and Mail (600 words): It’s time for Scotland to find a new home – in Canada

BBC News #1: BBC Trigger warning: 'previously unthinkable' ideas 'may shock some'
BBC News #2: Scotland could join Canada, but should it? Your responses
The Scotsman (first version). . .
The Scotsman (second version): A prominent author [says] Scotland should be invited to become a province of Canada.
The Weather Network: With talk of Scotland as 11th province, weather might be why

Quebec . . . 
Montreal Blog . . .
Estonia . . .
China . . .
Spain / castellano. . .
Spain / catalan
Brazil / Portuguese

The Independent / UK. . .
Daily Mail / UK . . .
The Week / UK Scotland should ditch the UK for Canada following second referendum
100.3 the Q Scotland As Canada’s 11th Prrrrovince? Och Aye, Says Ken McGoogan 


News Hornet. . .
Huffington Post. . . .

Ken McGoogan
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Scotland to join Canada? Ken, do you remember Turks & Caicos?

A savvy interviewer will always hold the toughest questions until near the end of a conversation. So it happened this morning on CTV's Your Morning. Host Lindsey Deluce waited until the final moment. We had been talking about why Canada should invite Scotland to become this country's eleventh province. Then she said, "Ken, do you remember Turks & Caicos? That whole thing?" She was alluding, of course, to an idea that has been kicking around for a century. In 1917, Canadian prime minister Robert Borden asked Great Britain to cede the tropical islands to Canada. The response has been lost in the mists of time. But the proposition
resurfaced in 1974, in a private member's bill, and then again last year, when it turned up as a resolution at the NDP's national convention in Edmonton. To date, the federal government has not acted on the idea. For Deluce, as it happens, I had an answer ready. But you can see for yourself by going here.

Click here to see bonus video from CTV News in Scotland, Ontario.

Ken McGoogan
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'Obscure' Canadian writer declines to don kilt for CTV appearance

Ken McGoogan, identified recently by the BBC as an "obscure Canadian writer," has declined to don his kilt to appear on CTV's Your Morning show. McGoogan, who recently caused an international ruckus by suggesting that Canada invite Scotland to become this country's 11th province, was quick to add that nobody at the flagship TV show -- or anywhere else, for that matter -- had asked him to wear his kilt. "But a debate has been raging in my mind," he said. "Finally, I took a stand. I respectfully declined.'"
The author, whose recent books include Celtic Lightning and How the Scots Invented Canada, contends that the BBC allusion to his obscurity was gratuitous and hurtful. He is on record as preferring "insufficiently celebrated." McGoogan will appear on the CTV show, which is hosted by Ben Mulroney and Anne-Marie Mediwake, this Wednesday (April 19) at 7:45 a.m.
The author is taking an equally hard line as regards his illustrated presentation at the Enoch Turner Schoolhouse. Slated to talk about Celtic Lightning, McGoogan said, "Yes, I will also elaborate my Scottish proposal. But don the kilt to perform? No. As I told the voices in my head, you do have Scottish roots, but also Irish and French. People would accuse you of over-representing. Who do you think you are?" McGoogan will speak at the Schoolhouse in the heart of historic Toronto on Tuesday, April 25.
Four days later, during the nation-wide Authors for Indies celebrations, McGoogan will appear kiltless, though not without trousers, at Book City in the Beaches. He pledges to wear his kilt, however, to give a St. Andrew's Night presentation in Embro.  About that, more anon.

Ken McGoogan
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Author's "previously unthinkable" ideas surface in the UK's Independent

The U.K.-based Independent has served up a slick, professional rewrite of the BBC piece on my "previously unthinkable" ideas, drawing also on my column in the Globe and Mail. Gotta love it! But does anybody know how to monetize this kind of thing? Newfoundlanders, especially, will enjoy the newspaper's situating of the city of St. John's. For the "previously unthinkable" trigger warning, see the next post down.

Scotland could leave the UK and join Canada instead, says author . . .

'Even as a typical Canadian province, it would have more powers than it does now,' says Ken McGooganics
Scotland should join Canada if it decides to leave the UK after Brexit, an author has suggested. 
Ken McGoogan said the idea made sense as in the modern era technological advancements made geographical boundaries “irrelevant”. 
If Scotland was to become a province of Canada it would be the third largest and make up 12.6 per cent of the population, compared with the eight per cent it represents in the UK, the Canadian author wrote in a comment piece for The Globe and Mail newspaper. 
He added that the country would have much more autonomy under the Canadian provincial system.
“No, Scotland would not become fully independent," he wrote. "But even as a typical Canadian province, it would have more powers than it does now."
He added: “Provincial legislatures have jurisdiction over their internal constitutions and direct taxation for provincial purposes, including for municipalities, school boards, hospitals, property and civil rights, administration of civil and criminal justice, and the list goes on".
Under the terms of the Canadian Constitution, Scotland would be able to keep its oil revenues from the North Sea because provinces control their own natural resources, he said. 
If they included the 4.7 million Canadians who claim Scottish descent they could make up a “power block” of nearly 25 per cent of the country’s population, he added. 
He also pointed out that Edinburgh is closer to St John’s, a city on an island off Canada’s eastern coast, than it is to Athens in Greece
To read the rest, away you go here. . . .

Ken McGoogan
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BBC Trigger warning: "previously unthinkable" ideas "may shock some"

From BBC North America:
As Scotland pushes for a second referendum on independence, one man is asking the previously unthinkable - if you're going to quit the UK, why not join Canada?
Canadian writer Ken McGoogan says the unorthodox alliance makes sense.
"I think it would be terrific for both Scotland and Canada," he says.
McGoogan first laid out his proposal in an opinion piece published in Canadian newspaper the Globe and Mail, where he argued that advancements in telecommunication technology and transatlantic travel have rendered pesky things like geographical boundaries "irrelevant".
Besides, he points out, Scotland is closer to Newfoundland than Hawaii is to California.
Last week, the Scottish Parliament voted in favour of asking the UK government to allow a legally-binding referendum on independence.
Prime Minister Theresa May has said the vote should wait until after Brexit.
Mr McGoogan says he sympathises with the angst that many Scots are feeling over Britain's decision to leave the EU.
"The Scots aren't happy right now, and I don't think they're being treated especially well."
Mr McGoogan says that if Scotland were to join Canada, it would enjoy a lot more independence and hold a lot more power than it currently does with Great Britain.
Scotland would be Canada's third largest province, with 5.3 million people, which would give it significant political sway. Add to that the millions of Canadians who, like Mr McGoogan, have Scottish ancestry, and you'd have a national-ethnic bloc about 10m strong, he reasons.
More importantly, Canadian provinces are in charge of more aspects of governance than Scotland has been afforded as part of the UK.
Canadian provinces are in charge of their own courts, health-care, systems and educational institutions. Some provinces also have their own immigration programmes, a fact that has already piqued the interest of a number of British and Scottish MPs.
Brexit "would never happen in Canada," Mr McGoogan argues, without the permission of all the provinces.
But the arrangement wouldn't only benefit Scotland, he argues. By making Scotland Canada's 11th province, Canada would gain a foothold in Europe. Far from abandoning any future Scottish bid for the EU, Mr McGoogan argues that Scotland could apply to join with Canada.
Mr McGoogan's ideas may shock some, and would certainly require years of back-and-forth negotiations with both Scotland and the UK, he readily admits.

Ken McGoogan
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It’s time for Scotland to find a new home – in Canada

The initial blog post (April 1) ran 170 words. Your
enthusiastic response -- now more than 5,500 views and counting -- encouraged me to pitch the Globe and Mail, where I got the go-ahead for 600 words. This 610-word version will turn up tomorrow (April 5) in the Globe's print edition. Meanwhile, you can read it online, starting here.

Let’s invite Scotland to join Canada. The Scots aren’t happy with the rest of Britain. They aren’t happy politically with Westminster’s shift to the right. They aren’t happy with Brexit, and with being frog-marched out of a multinational alliance they don’t wish to leave. The Scots, certainly as represented in Edinburgh, want to hold a second referendum on independence. But they’re hitting a brick wall.
Now is the time for the Canadian government to extend an invitation. Would the Scots consider becoming a province of Canada? I know, I know. Some Scottish nationalists will throw their hands in the air – as will some Canadians. Please, hear me out.
With a population of 5.3 million, Scotland would become Canada’s third largest province, after Ontario (13.9 million) and Quebec (8.3 million). Our country’s current population is 36.5 million. With Scotland, in a country of 41.8 million, the new province would represent 12.6 per cent of the population, as compared with 8 per cent of the 65 million people in the U.K. And it gets better. Add the 4.7 million Canadians who claim Scottish heritage and you’ve got a cornerstone population of 10 million – nearly 25 per cent of the country’s total. Isn’t that what they call a power block?

Scotland is not contiguous with the rest of Canada. . . .

To read the rest, go to the Globe by clicking here. 

(Photos by Sheena Fraser McGoogan)

Ken McGoogan
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Let's invite Scotland to join Canada

Let's invite Scotland to join Canada.
The time to act is now. The Scots aren't happy with the Rest of Britain. They aren't happy politically with Britain's shift to the right. They aren't happy with Brexit, and with being piped out of a multinational alliance they don't wish to leave.
The Scots want to hold a second referendum on independence, but they're hitting a brick wall.
Time to extend an invitation. Would the Scots consider becoming a province of Canada? With a population of 5.3 million, Scotland would become our third largest province, after Ontario (13.9 million) and Quebec (8.3 million).
Canada's federal system of government already accommodates one officially "distinct nation." We could easily welcome a second.
These days, distance is no barrier. Scotland is closer to Canada (2085 miles) than Hawaii is to California (2471 miles).  And culturally? Well, I've already made that case in How the Scots Invented Canada and Celtic Lightning.  Yes, you can see where this is going: first we invite Scotland, then we call for Ireland. Is anybody with me?

Ken McGoogan
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Before turning mainly to books about arctic exploration and Canadian history, Ken McGoogan worked for two decades as a journalist at major dailies in Toronto, Calgary, and Montreal. He teaches creative nonfiction writing through the University of Toronto and in the MFA program at King’s College in Halifax. Ken served as chair of the Public Lending Right Commission, has written recently for Canada’s History, Canadian Geographic, and Maclean’s, and sails with Adventure Canada as a resource historian. Based in Toronto, he has given talks and presentations across Canada, from Dawson City to Dartmouth, and in places as different as Edinburgh, Melbourne, and Hobart.