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Vriend v Alberta Revisited: A Road to Constitutional or Judicial Supremacy?

The Supreme Court of Canada  has on numerous occasions insisted upon the primacy of the written text of the Constitution.[1] In the Reference Re Secession of Quebec, the Supreme Court explained that the recognition of underlying constitutional principles “could not be taken as an invitation to dispense with the written text of the Constitution”. It noted that “[a] written constitution ...

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Not Just A Pillowfight: How the SCC Has Muddied the Standard of Review

Recently, Justice David Stratas of the Federal Court of Appeal released an extremely helpful summary of almost every aspect of administrative law in Canada. Administrative law students, practitioners, and academics would be well-served to carefully read the document. But Justice Stratas’ piece is far from merely descriptive—in it, he provides a number of recommendations for a return to sound and ...

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Why I am Not a Conservative Either: Thoughts on Chief Justice Joyal’s Address

Glenn D. Joyal, Chief Justice of the Court of Queen’s Bench of Manitoba, gave the keynote address at last January Canadian Constitution Foundation’s recent Law and Freedom Conference. His talk, “The Charter and Canada’s New Political Culture: Are We All Ambassadors Now?”, was interesting and thought-provoking. Although the prepared text has been available on the website of Advocates for the Rule ...

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Parting with Pardy: A Review of Ecolawgic

Professor Bruce Pardy has written an enjoyable and thought-provoking book entitled Ecolawgic: The Logic of Ecosystems and the Rule of Law. He argues from a familiar libertarian perspective, but his thesis is original in that he compares markets to ecosystems. His argument is summed up nicely in the abstract to the full text on SSRN as follows: Ecosystems contain their own immutable logic: ...

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Ecolawgic: The Logic of Ecosystems and the Rule of Law

The following is an excerpt from Professor Bruce Pardy’s book, Ecolawgic: The Logic of Ecosystems and the Rule of Law. The footnotes from the original version have been omitted. The full text can be accessed here. Bruce Pardy is Professor of Law at Queen’s University. He has written extensively on a wide range of legal topics, taught at law schools ...

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The Paradoxical Presumption of Constitutionality

INTRODUCTION Should the courts, in judicially reviewing legislation, employ a presumption constitutionality? Should they, in other words, presume that a law enacted by Parliament or the provincial legislatures is constitutionally valid, rebutting that presumption only in the face of convincing evidence? The answer to this question is not as clear as one might suppose. In the context of the division ...

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