Shopping for votes: How politicians choose us and we choose them by Susan Delacourt
A witty, insightful, and provocative look at the inside world of political marketing and its impact on democracy Inside the political backrooms of Ottawa, the Mad Men of Canadian politics are planning their next consumer-friendly pitch. Where once politics was seen as a public service, increasingly it's seen as a business, and citizens are considered customers. But its unadvertised products are voter apathy and gutless public policy. Ottawa insider Susan Delacourt takes readers onto the world of Canada's top political marketers, explaining how parties slice and dice their platforms according to what polls say voters' priorities are in each constituency, and how parties control the media.Provocative, incisive and entertaining, Checked Out is The Age of Persuasion meets The Armageddon Factor .
This changes everything: Capitalism vs the climate by Naomi Klein
FINALIST 2014 - Hilary Weston Writers' Trust Prize for Non-Fiction Forget everything you think you know about global warming. The really inconvenient truth is that it's not about carbon--it's about capitalism. The convenient truth is that we can seize this existential crisis to transform our failed system and build something radically better. In her most provocative book yet, Naomi Klein, author of the global bestsellers The Shock Doctrine and No Logo , tackles the most profound threat humanity has ever faced: the war our economic model is waging against life on earth. Klein exposes the myths that are clouding the climate debate. We have been told the market will save us, when in fact the addiction to profit and growth is digging us in deeper every day. We have been told it's impossible to get off fossil fuels when in fact we know exactly how to do it--it just requires breaking every rule in the "free-market" playbook: reining in corporate power, rebuilding local economies and reclaiming our democracies. We have also been told that humanity is too greedy and selfish to rise to this challenge. In fact, all around the world, the fight back is already succeeding in ways both surprising and inspiring. Climate change, Klein argues, is a civilizational wake-up call, a powerful message delivered in the language of fires, floods, storms and droughts. Confronting it is no longer about changing the light bulbs. It's about changing the world--before the world changes so drastically that no one is safe. Either we leap--or we sink. Once a decade, Naomi Klein writes a book that redefines its era. No Logo did so for globalization. The Shock Doctrine changed the way we think about austerity. This Changes Everything is about to upend the debate about the stormy era already upon us.
Happy city: Transforming our lives through urban design by Charles Montgomery
Charles Montgomery's Happy City will revolutionize the way we think about urban life. After decades of unchecked sprawl, more people than ever are moving back to the city. Dense urban living has been prescribed as a panacea for the environmental and resource crises of our time. But is it better or worse for our happiness? Are subways, sidewalks and condo towers an improvement on the car-dependence of sprawl? The award-winning journalist Charles Montgomery finds answers to such questions at the intersection between urban design and the emerging science of happiness, during an exhilarating journey through some of the world's most dynamic cities. He meets the visionary mayor who introduced a "sexy" bus to ease status anxiety in Bogotá; the architect who brought the lessons of medieval Tuscan hill towns to modern-day New York City; the activist who turned Paris's urban freeways into beaches; and an army of American suburbanites who have hacked the design of their own streets and neighborhoods. Rich with new insights from psychology, neuroscience and Montgomery's own urban experiments, Happy City reveals how our cities can shape our thoughts as well as our behavior. The message is as surprising as it is hopeful: by retrofitting cities and our own lives for happiness, we can tackle the urgent challenges of our age. The happy city can save the world--and all of us can help build it.
Extreme mean: Trolls, bullies and predators online by Paula Todd
From one of Canada's foremost investigative writers, a groundbreaking exposé on the motives and machinations behind cyberabuse - tormenting, trolling, harassment, cyberbullying, stalking, and sexual extortion - and the toll it is taking on children, youth, and adults around the world. nbsp; It seems as if each week our news broadcasts, newspaper headlines, Twitter feeds, and Facebook timelines are dominated by stories of cyberbullying and other digital abuse. This isn't the playground teasing and name-calling of generations before the Internet. This new abuse's unique characteristics - anonymity, permanence, and viral audience - can relentlessly exacerbate the humiliation, pain, and danger of its victims. nbsp; Ugly rumours that once snaked through school hallways and around the office water cooler are now delivered at lightning speed to the world, while sexual extortion and revenge-porn sites target those who've shared intimate images or had them stolen by hackers. Cyberstalkers who target adults destroy reputations and careers. And the splendid connectivity of social media, such as Facebook and Twitter, also makes us vulnerable to "interpersonal terrorism," while apps that promise privacy and rapid deletion are ridden with loopholes. nbsp; With vivid reportage, Paula Todd goes deep into the world of "extreme mean," uncovering the people who use the Internet to undermine lives rather than improve them. Through exclusive personal stories of online abuse from around the world, including the suicide of Amanda Todd and the untold costs of Rebecca Black's experience as "the most hated girl on the Internet," as well as interviews with troll-tormentors, accidental abusers, victimized kids, and adults, Extreme Mean explores the often surprising roots of online abuse, challenges current academic thinking, and offers new ways of understanding the nasty and the nefarious who erode humanity andnbsp; threaten Internet freedom. nbsp; Provocative, astute and compelling, Extreme Mean is a shocking yet inspiring illustration of behaviour that affects all of us. It's a call-to-arms for change, and a search for ways to turn a moral panic into a moral possibility.
Boundless: Tracing land and dream in a new Northwest Passage by Kathleen Winter
In 2010, Kathleen Winter was offered a ride on a ship sailing through the Northwest Passage, the same route that took the lives of Sir John Franklin and his crew in 1844. On board, Winter comes face to face with the impressive beauty of Canada's north and with her unforgettable fellow passengers. She chronicles it all in Boundless, which is both a travel journal and a meditation on Canada's relationship with the North and the people who call it home.
Filled with elegance and insight, Boundless is an important contribution to the conversation about Canada's north.