Talk:Governor General of Canada

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Former good article nominee Governor General of Canada was a good articles nominee, but did not meet the good article criteria at the time. There are suggestions below for improving the article. Once these issues have been addressed, the article can be renominated. Editors may also seek a reassessment of the decision if they believe there was a mistake.

Discussion of hyphenisation of Governor General[edit]

Consolidation of earlier discussions[edit]

The entries in this section have been moved from other pages. I have not attempted to fix the chronology in any way, but leave that as an exercise to the reader (or an editor with more time or motivation to do so)

From User talk:Adam Bishop[edit]

The Governor General of Canada is NOT hyphenated, as it clearly states on her official website. As well, there isn't a Governor General or Governor-General of Ireland. Some Governors General use the hyphen and others do not. In this case, the GG of Canada does not.

Hi Adam, I hope I haven't caught you too late. There is an error in the Governor-General template. It is missing the hyphen in Governor-General. (It is in as Governor General!). lol FearÉIREANN 21:28 27 Jul 2003 (UTC)

I'm afraid it definitely is hyphenated. (I've recently had to write 50,000 words on the Irish Governor-General, and that title was taken directly from Canada.) Basically the key word in the title is governor. The general is a qualifier which means in effect overall, ie, superior in rank and constitutional to all over governors (provincial, state, local etc). In modern english if being created now it would probably be general governor. But the words were reversed and hypenated. (As in president-elect, Attorney-General, etc, the key word being president and attorney). In contrast Lord Deputy or Lord Lieutenant aren't, because the key word isn't Lord but Deputy or Lieutenant. Some hypenated words have lost their hypen over time (through illiteracy rather than a deliberate decision) but Governor-General hasn't.

As to the official website, that sounds a classic case of what some Irish civil servants call the OSMS meaning Oh Shit Mistake Syndorme. What happens is an outside expert is commissioned to do something (usually design a website). A mistake is made. The civil servant spots it, presumes it would be dead easy to fix, so easy that it would be embarrassing to have to ask for it to be fixed. Except that in reality he doesn't have a goddamned clue how to fix it. So, like someone who dinges their partner's car and is too embarrased to admit it, he walks away and hopes that no-one will notice or that if they do, they will know how to fix it. Or else a junior civil servant who doesn't know about the hyphen or doesn't think it important had the site designed and has never spotted the mistake. And the senior civil servants who would know aren't very computer-literate and so haven't visited the site and so never noticed. I've lost count of the number of major websites I have come across with monumental errors because of this. As a result I have learned never to trust websites and treat Google searches not so much with a pinch of salt as a bucket of salt! (eg, a user on wiki tried to put on a ludicrous definition of the terms Royal Prerogative and Divine right of kings on wiki. He was blocked so he had now put it on a separate website. So a google search will throw up his nutty theory as a real definition.

Even a google search shows clear evidence of the OSMS. Some documents use a hypen, others don't. Some have spelling mistakes. GG is hypenated in some parts of a document, then loses it in others. The 1982 Constitution Act in some versions hypenates it, others don't. Some bizarrely even have a Governor general, one I found governorGeneral!!!

The site called Governor General of Australia contains he following paragraph:

In 1936, the Commonwealth reopened Admiralty House as a Sydney Residence for the new Governor-General, Lord Gowrie. Successive Governors-General have since used Admiralty House as their residence when in New South Wales. Formal title to Admiralty House finally passed from New South Wales to the Commonwealth by Crown grant in 1948 on condition that the House be used only as a residence for the Governor-General.

So the article is de-hypenated, but the text hypenated! The 1996 installation of the Aussie GG uses governor-general. An earlier one doesn't.

So as in some many technical areas, the net is unfortunately a very poor source of information. (It would be nice if google had an authenticated sources search as opposed to a anything written on the topic no matter how much bullshit it contains search.) But technically and grammatically the words are hypenated and were so in hard-copy versions of the primary sources. We should aim to achieve primary source accuracy where possible rather than contribute to net confusion, at least in theory! :-) FearÉIREANN 23:10 27 Jul 2003 (UTC)

The official web site of the Governor General of Canada does not use a hyphen. I would think that Her Excellency (and her staff) would know her proper title. - Cafemusique 21:38 28 Jul 2003 (UTC)

I checked the hardcopy version of the two reports of Australia's Republic Advisory Committee. Volume II does into detail on international governors-general and presidents. It was prepared by a professional secretariat for then Prime Minister Paul Keating. (A copy also went to the Queen). It also contacted each state and quotes and refers to various commonweath constitutions. All GGs are hypenated, including the Canadian governor-general, in the document. Given the document's importance and prestigé and the fact that it dealt directly with governors-general directly, it is unlikely that they would have used the wrong form.

BTW it is more than likely that a state would use either the same outside agency or the same in house team to computerise all their records so there is nothing that surprising about all state web pages in Canada you found not using hypens if the same team of people had had the task of computerising all the major constitutional documents and setting up websites.

Even if perhaps for linguistic reasons to do with French speakers, it was decided in Canada to de-hypenate the governor-general, it probably would make sense to apply the same standard spelling to the office worldwide. Otherwise you could have a repeat of the czar/tsar mess or the problem with two methods of westerning Chinese names. The Irish gg was 100% written as governor-general not governor general. The formal document installing the last governor-general of Australia used a hypen. Formal state documents in New Zealand use a hypen. Hypenating some governors-general and not others would produce a textual nightmare on wiki, with someone seeing a de-hypenated gg in Canada and removing the hypen in Ireland. Then someone reinstating it in Ireland and installing it in Canada. People constantly de-hypenating and re-hypenating governos-general in Ceylon, Belize, New Zealand, Australia, etc. On balance, even if the Canadian GG is de-hypenated, (and I'm not convinced!) it would probably make sense to keep a general wiki standard wiki-wide. FearÉIREANN 22:56 28 Jul 2003 (UTC)

FROM [[User talk:WillA

See: in regard to the Governor General of Canada 'role' constitutionally - there is some question raised by the commons - specifically the PMO's office - although the PMO has higher official status than the PM, so his refuting the GG is not per se accurate. (talk) 20:43, 9 October 2009 (UTC) WillA

From User talk:Jtdirl[edit]

Hmm...well, the official website doesn't have a hyphen ([1]), and I didn't put it in when I made all those templates because the List of Canadian Governors General page didn't have one. Of course, that page then says "governors-general" with a hyphen, so now I don't know... Adam Bishop 21:43 27 Jul 2003 (UTC)

Alright, it should just be a simple matter of making List of Canadian Governors General redirect to a page with the hyphen in it. I've seen the hyphen used officially in Canada, and I would have used it myself, but I figured it would be easier just to link to the page that already existed. Adam Bishop 23:29 27 Jul 2003 (UTC)

As I've already posted on User talk:Adam Bishop, the [Governor General's own site] does not use a hyphen. I also point out to you Consolidated Statutes and Regulations from the Canadian Department of Justice, checking out the Constitution Act, 1867, checking out section 18(2) of the Interpretation Act, for example. Every current official source I've checked has come up without the hyphen. (Because of its inaccuracy, I haven't even run it through Google.) - Cafemusique 22:11 28 Jul 2003 (UTC)

OK. Almost time to put this together...I went to the library. They've (apparently) thrown out their Revised Statutes of Canada and refer folks to the online site at I did check the provincial statutes, and found that they used "Lieutenant Governor" (without hyphen). And the online version put out by the Government of Canada of all their statutes uses "Governor General". So, I think the evidence is pretty clear that Canadian usage is without the hyphen. - Cafemusique 22:30, 29 Jul 2003 (UTC)

From User talk:Cafemusique[edit]

I know the GG's website uses no hyphen...I mentioned that to Jtdirl, but he feels that's a mistake. Personally I have always written it with a hyphen, and I have seen it written like that. I've also seen it in various capitalizations (G-G, GG, G-g, Gg, g-g, gg). The only reason I didn't use a hyphen in the first place was because the List of Canadian Governors General page didn't have one, at the time. I didn't know it was going to cause all this trouble :) Maybe we'll have to dig around some more for the right way. Adam Bishop

I'm afraid websites are a worthless source of information on such matters as the hypenation of the office of Governor-General (and GG is hypenated, because it is made up of two conjoined words, of which the critical one is the first one, governor, the second, general merely the qualifier to indicate pre-eminence). Websites are rarely the work of experts in their non-computer content. The text is written by someone but the typesetting is done by the designers of the website and they are notorious for their screw-ups. Senior civil servants are rarely computer literate enough to correct mistakes and too embarrassed to request changes for fear that the mistake is in fact not a mistake at all but a technical necessity.

I have lost count of the number of horrendously awful websites I have come across in websites of governments, presidents, monarchs, with prime ministers' names incorrectly spelt (as happened in an Irish government website), double-barrelled names without hypens (Vatican website), three word names hypenated when they should not be (Buckingham Palace website, where someone also made some horrendous clangers over history facts because a junior official got the facts wrong and it was not noticed for two years by anyone senior, by which time any belated correction would only draw attention to the mistake, so they just hoped that no-one who knew the facts visited the website, and as 90% of people who visit the website go there with no background info, it was an understandable mistake). So just because the GG of Canada's website doesn't use a hypen doesn't mean there should not be one. (The Irish parlamentary website is littered with inaccurate typesetting, for example.) It may just mean that some illiterate dunce did the typesetting and nobody senior has seen it or if they have know how to change it. (That why google searches are equally unreliable, because the most of its stuff is not written on professional put personal contributors, and even the professional pages are typeset by computer people.)

Hardcopy documents and primary sources regularly hypenate governor-general. It is possible that some change was made to the spelling of governor-general in Canada, but websites and google searches on their own are a worthless source of evidence to rely on unfortunately. FearÉIREANN 22:18 28 Jul 2003 (UTC)

Google doesn't distinguish between a search with a hyphen and a search without, so that doesn't matter anyway. There are no pages on the Canadian governments websites that do have a hyphen there, though, and it's hard to believe they would make the mistake every single time. Historically it should have a hyphen, but maybe they officially got rid of it. Adam Bishop 22:23 28 Jul 2003 (UTC)
It is quite possible. Many governments set up their own computer people to computerise all their records. The Irish parliamentary and presidential websites are disasters; the same set of people did them both and made mistakes all over the place, including in such areas as wrongly capitalising the 'd' in de Valera. Buckingham Palace is similarly littered with inaccuracies.

I checked a lot of stuff on the web and came across a mixed bunch of hypens and no hypens. (But the one very respectable site said that Canada had a prime minister called Pier Trudeaux! In any case, as the office of governor-general is a worldwide office, it makes sense to apply the worldwide spelling. Otherwise you can open up a hornet's nest of problems (as with czar and tsar, tsaritsa and tsarina, etc). I have also checked with the hardcopy contents of the Australian Republic Advisory Committee reports, Vol. I and II. It quotes from the constitution of every single Commonweath of Nations state that has a governor-general, and every single one, including Canada, is hypenated. That document was prepared by senior academic and lawyers who double-checked every single fact and spoke to the government of every single state. As it was a formal state document that was going into the parliamentary library, to the Queen and the Prime Minister, they had to get it 100% accurate. And not once can I find an unhypenated governor-general. FearÉIREANN 22:40 28 Jul 2003 (UTC)

I noticed that too...the Austrlian one was always hyphenated. But then the Canadian one wasn't. Perhaps this should be moved to the List of Canadian Governors General talk page, or the Governor General page? Adam Bishop 22:45 28 Jul 2003 (UTC)

Actually the Australian one is regularly unhypenated on most government websites but hypenated in formal documents relating to the installation of the governor-general, which again shows the uselessness of websites. FearÉIREANN 23:04, 29 Jul 2003 (UTC)

In response to Adam Bishop @ 22:23 UTC Agreed. Adding more resources: a style guide from the printing office of the US government, a print document which happens to be available online, does not use the hyphen. I remember hearing that the hyphen's use was common but erroneous. I am making specific citations, could you provide something more specific, Jtdirl, to back up your contention that there ought to be a hyphen? - Cafemusique
In response to Jtdirl I think that quotes are often altered in matters of spelling and punctuation for editorial reasons. I hardly think one document produced by an Australian committee shows that every official Canadian government web site and one resource from the United States government is incorrect. In any event, I'll visit my public library in the next day or two to check out the answer in the Revised Statutes of Canada, 1985 which is the official version of all federal legislation as of that date. I'll report back when I've done so. - Cafemusique

It was not one Australian Committee. It was a very highpowered committee that included Malcolm Turnbull, a top lawyer, Dr. John Herst, the Reader of History in Las Trobe University, Mary Kostakidis, a member of the Constitutional Centenary Foundation, Susan Ryan, a former Minister for Education, Professor George Winterton, Professor of Law in the University of New South Wales, Dr. Glyn Davis, Senior Lecturer and Research Fellow in the School of Politics and Public Policy, Griffith University and Namoi Dougall, a senior Solicitor. It was advised by Professor Berhard Raschauer, Professor of Public and Administrative Law, University of Vienna, Professor Klaus von Beyme, Professor of Political Science, University of Heidelberg, A.G. Noorani, formerly of the Centre for Policy Research, Jim Duffy, author of comparative studies on heads of state, Madun Gujadhur, QC, barrister in the English, Indian and Mauritian bars and Chairman of the Mauritian Law Reform Commission and Sir Ellis Clarke, former Governor-General and first President of Trinidad and Tobago. Its secretariat was provided by the Australian Government from the higher echelons of the Australian Civil Service. Its report was given to the Prime Minister, Paul Keating and Queen Elizabeth II. It was put in the Library of the Australian Parliament for MPs and Senators, was debated in parliament and debated in depth in the Australian Constitutional Convention. Some mere Australian Committee! FearÉIREANN 23:04, 29 Jul 2003 (UTC)

Despite all those big names it still managed to come up with a minimalist model despite opinion polls indicating ~60% in favour of popular election. Oh well, 20/20 hindsight, I guess. At least it was useful for something: it gave John Howard something to hide behind whenever he was accused of rigging the referendum. -- Tim Starling 05:34, Aug 6, 2003 (UTC)
Hm? This appears to be one Australian committee even from your description. This committee appears to have been made up of highly respected Australians who were advised by worldwide experts. I would still suggest that an Australian committee, no matter how respected its composition, is a poor choice for attempting to determine what the proper punctuation of a Canadian term is. As I mentioned in my latest addition to your talk page, I've done more research into hard copy references to the Canadian Governor General. I would expect that Canadian laws and government publications would be more likely to be accurate than even the one illustrious Australian committee to which you have made mention in terms of the title of the Queen's representative in Canada.
My point has been that I have brought forward several references both online and, now, print, from the country we are discussing which you seem to be disregarding based on a report published on the other side of the world. Presumably the proofreaders used would have been more familiar with Australian English usage than Canadian and might have missed this error. Are you willing to concede that the proper title of the Canadian Governor General does not contain a hyphen? If not, what more can I produce to convince you? If you can concede that point, perhaps we could take a step back (because I'll admit I'm getting more frustrated than I'd like), and then return to discuss what effect that concession might or might not have in titling of articles. (I suspect we'll still be in disagreement, but if we can come to agreement on the proper punctuation of GG in Canada, it removes one issue to sidetrack us.) - Cafemusique 00:00, 30 Jul 2003 (UTC)
They communicated with constitutional experts in each state as to the constitutional technicalities and terminology used in each state before putting together the report. Its terminology was also checked by international experts on international nomenclature. Yes the committee was made up of Austrialians but many of them are experts on international topics and not just Australian topics. A committee report prepared for posterity, after direct communication with international experts, written by experts and proofread by experts is much less likely to be wrong than websites and texts prepared by middle or lower-ranking civil servants being proofed by other middle-ranking civil servants. I still have not seen any clear documentary evidence of a qualitative as opposed to a quantitive nature that shows that there definitively is no hypen. FearÉIREANN 01:36, 30 Jul 2003 (UTC)
I still think the easiest solution is just pick one and make the other redirect. It doesn't affect searches... Adam Bishop 03:28, 30 Jul 2003 (UTC)

I've been in contact with the GG of Canada's office, the AG of Canada's office and Buckingham Palace to see if they can shed some light. They are due to get back to me. FearÉIREANN 03:34, 30 Jul 2003 (UTC)~

I e-mailed the Canadian GG's office as well, but I haven't heard back from them yet. Adam Bishop 03:36, 30 Jul 2003 (UTC)

Discussions which took place here[edit]

Process to follow[edit]

It seems there are two issues that should be settled: what is the proper title of the Queen's representative to Canada (does it contain a hyphen or not), and what should be the proper usage in titles of Wikipedia articles? My opinion is that: the proper title is Governor General, without a hyphen, and that the titles of pages should reflect that. But as I say in the last submission prior to this, I think it is helpful to separate the two, first deciding what the correct hyphenisation of GG is in regards to the GovGen of Canada. Then, once we've come to a consensus on that, decide finally on its effect on titling.

I visited Rideau Hall today and took the tour (unfortunately forgetting to ask the question of the hour), but did notice that the carved list of all the former governors general on the wall inside the entrance had no hyphen, and I do not recall singing the hyphen used once. Which still doesn't explain why or when Canada dropped the hyphen (if that's what happened). - Cafemusique 05:11, 6 Aug 2003 (UTC)

I finally got a reply from the Governor General's website, they say that they officially spell it without a hyphen, and suggested some documents to look at for justification:

I guess that answers the question, for Canada at least! Adam Bishop 16:08, 9 Sep 2003 (EDT)

Here, here! Alex756 06:30, 10 Sep 2003 (UTC)

>< Hyphen- to be or to not to be. Is it REALLY that crucial? Why aren't you guys reviewing articles that need serious retooling or enlarging stubs instead of crapping verbatim on whether its a hyphen or not? Do you really think that someone will scream bloody murder because on the test that determines their future career asks them if its hyphenated, and they saw it hyphenated on Wikipedia, and then got it wrong? >< Solid work researching it.. even though its about as helpful as a roll of toilet paper going up Shit Creek without a paddle..

Ryan K. June 7th 08.

Is it as helpful as dropping a lame comment into a discussion that ended five years ago? --G2bambino (talk) 04:48, 8 June 2008 (UTC)

Windsor uniform[edit]

The Governor General did not wear the Windsor uniform. The Windsor uniform was a non-military outfit worn by ambassadors, diplomats, Prime Ministers, and such. The GG wore a colonial military uniform. Look at the photo on the governor general page and then look at a picture of the Windsor and you will see they are quite distinct. user:J.J.

Powers of the Governor General[edit]

It seems to me the article could make clearer that the GG has acquired most of the Queen's powers, and that this is clearly the intention of successsive governments, to reduce the Queen's role as much as possible. The Queen may be de jure head of state, but there can be no denying that it is the wish of the government that she be as invisible as possible (down to the coins and $20 bill, and the occasional stamp), and Adrienne is de facto head of state. I also think the article takes a legalistic view of how the GG is appointed. This obfuscating of the obvious is characteristic of British constitutional history. Let's face it - he/she is selected by the Prime Minister, not the Queen, and the rest is paperwork. Does anyone honestly think the Queen would say no to any nominee, or even consider it in her strongest moments?

  • I would certainly deny that the government wishes the Queen to "be as invisibile as possible." If that were so, they'd fund other subjects for coins, $20 bills, and stamps, and we would not have royal tours from time to time. The article takes a legalistic view of how the GG is appointed because that's how the GG is appointed. If the Prime Minister chooses an appropriate candidate, there is no way the Queen would say no; if the PM chooses a somewhat dubious candidate, there's no way the Queen would say no. If the PM chooses a clearly inappropriate candidate for GG, I think the Queen would certainly consider saying no. In any case, no matter what the PM does, his nominee does not become GG until the Queen makes the appointment. By all means, the fact that the PM's choice has been invariably appointed can be mentioned, but we cannot be accurate without mentioning what you call "legalistic" information. - Cafemusique 01:49, 6 Dec 2004 (UTC)
  • Cafemusique is correct about the legal mechanism of how the GG is appointed. However, if one quits law and moves to the realm of political science, it would be equally valid (depending on your point of view) that "The Prime Minister selects and nominates a candidate, and the monarch approves and appoints". But this is hardly worth quibbling over. It might, however, mislead non-Canadians into thinking the Queen selects the GG. As to the future of the monarchy in Canada, who knows. Only the fear of re-opening the constitution prevents discussion of the issue raised by Deputy Prime Minister John Manley a couple of years ago. However, as someone a lot older than Cafemusique, I can tell you from six decades that the monarchy has gone from being very important in the 1940s to relative oblivion in the 2000's. You were not around to see the Royal Mail, Royal CAF, Royal CA, Royal CN disappear, all gone now (Canada Post, Canadian Forces). We sang God Save the Queen and Land of Hope and Glory - gone now. We made scrapbooks in school of every royal birth, marriage and death. Do elementary and secondary schools spend much time on the royal family now? I could go on. Need we mention the Québécois, our fellow citizens, (especially the PQ) who laugh at the very idea of an English monarch "heading" the country. That said, I concede there is no movement to dispose of Queen Elizabeth as there is in Australia. It might well be because our constitutional history tells us that we could never agree on how to replace the British monarch with a Canadian head of state. -- 22:29, 6 Dec 2004 (UTC)

The whole section titled "The Future of the Office" in my opinion lacks the NPOV which ALL Wikipedia articles are supposed to have. It seems to have been written by someone who is *obviously* republican, and there is no reason to even have it here at all. --Maxwell C. 02:57, 8 Feb 2005 (UTC)

I'm not sure if putting this here the right thing to do, but, with the possibility of the Governor General firing the Prime minister and government at that behest of the opposition looming, the issue of the actual powers of the GG is going to be hot and bothered will into the new year. Remember the Kerr/Witlam thing in Austrialia in 1975. This could be worse, especially if Dion becomes Prime Minister or Jean declares herself dictator for a brief time. Ericl (talk) 14:12, 29 November 2008 (UTC)

You clearly have no idea how the Canadian constitution works, adn your speculations here are clearly POV/"spin" in nature, as with other edits you've made using terms like "depose" and "coup" and your confabulation taht the G-G would or even could rule as dictator. Either you are an undereducated sophomore, or you're a Tory spin doctor. Or perhaps, given your edit history, a GOP spin doctor trying to stir some babble up north of the border. You're out of your depth, as I told you elsewhere, and I'll be on the watch for more politically-flavoured edits and opinionations from you. And yes, putting your twaddle here is NOT the thing to do. This is not a blog, nor is it a "what-if" page. And there's no comparison to the Kerr/Whitlam thing in Australia, nor to the Byng-Meighen comparison you amde elsewhere. And in both cases you couldn't spell the name of teh protagonists; Meighen is such a well-known Canadian name it's one of the things that leads me to think you're American, i.e. your misspelling of it, likewise Witlam/Whitlam.....if you are American and are genuinely interested in Canadian politics, I suggest you read up more and not just recite the Tory spin as if it were some kind of valid perspective. it's because it's not, in fact, that they're going down the tubes this week. "How to blow an election win with one stupid policy" will be Harper's final legacy (as he's not likely to survive a leadership challenge within the Tories after all this os over)Skookum1 (talk)

Template & lack of text at beginning of article[edit]

The Canadian politics template appears to be breaking up the text, and I can't find a way to fix it. Ingoolemo (talk) 04:52, 6 Jan 2005 (UTC)

The same thing seems to have happened to all of the similar templates, including the following:

All of the articles with these templates were fine until a technical change was made on the server a couple of weeks ago. Where would be the right forum to raise this issue and find someone who understands what's going on? Iota 03:08, 19 Jan 2005 (UTC)

Monarchists: confident but deleted?[edit]

Deleted unsupported opinion. You're welcome to restore this passage if you can support it with comments from the committee members or federal government.

I don't follow. Aren't the sentiments attributed to monarchists, of some unspecified sort, not specifically to the above individuals? Alai 06:54, 8 Feb 2005 (UTC)


Yes, true. But is an encyclopedia the right place for opinions with no base in fact? The author's passage attributed the failure to implement the committee's original recommendations to the members' acknowledgement that "Canada's constitutional monarchy was fine as it is." If that's true, let him back it up with a reference. MC Rufus 07:33, 8 Feb 2005 (UTC)

Republican claim on Canadian Governor Genral page[edit]

In this section:, it is claimed that "Since Australia’s 1999 referendum failure was mainly attributed to a division in opinion on a republican formula, not procedure (many wanted their head of state elected popularly while the referendum asked for a parliamentary vote), Canadian republicans favour removing the divisive aspects beforehand since these changes require only parliamentary approval to implement."

There is no documented proof that the Australian referendum failed because of disagreement over the model of republic. Rather, this is only opinion, mainly of Australian republicans.

To sate anything other than such is to sway the 'information' in favour of the republican side of the debate, thereby going against Wikipedia's 'neutral point of view' policies.

Therefore, the sentence should read as follows:

"Some Australian republicans opine that Australia’s 1999 referendum failure was mainly attributed to a division in opinion on a republican formula, not procedure (many wanted their head of state elected popularly while the referendum asked for a parliamentary vote), Canadian republicans favour removing the divisive aspects beforehand since these changes require only parliamentary approval to implement." gbambino


Try these:

1) [Martyn Webb, Professor Emeritus at the University of Western Australia] “The ARM’s failure to compromise with their fellow republicans was the root cause of their eventual defeat. Had the ARM high command adopted the Constitutional Convention’s parliamentary nomination and popular election Model A as proposed by Geoffrey Gallop and supported by the direct electionists, there is no doubt that the referendum would have passed in all States with possibly a 60 – 70 per cent majority in its favour.”

2) Australian Court Justice Michael Kirby:“if the republicans were to put forward another version with a president elected in some way by federal parliament (or any other group including politicians), it seems likely that such a proposal would face the same fate as the 1999 proposal.”

3) Kim Beazley – Leader of the Australian Labor Party and Leader of the Opposition: “It was opposed by an alliance of dyed-in-the-wool monarchists who ran a well-organised campaign, and direct-elect republicans who did not like the model on offer in which the president would be appointed by a two-thirds majority of the Parliament.”


Here are some more:

- [Britain’s Guardian/Observer] : “The monarchist No supporters had been joined on the left flank by unlikely allies in the shape of the 'direct electionists', led by former Independent MPs and angry that the electorate would not be able to vote directly for a president - and a true 'people's choice' could never be made.”

- Opinion polls that showed in the week running up to the referendum, [only 9 per cent of Australians actively wanted to maintain the monarchy]. MC Rufus

The essay by Martyn Webb is invalid as it is a) not a government document (it is a Working Paper pubished by the Institute of Governmental Studies), and b) is written by a self confessed republican (pg. 4: "What follows is an attempt to explain, from the perspective of one who, as a true republican, took an active part..."). Therefore, it is the theory (or opinion) of a republican.
Justice Michael Kirby, a monarchist, is opining only that if another 'president by parliamentary election' form was put forward, the referendum would still fail. He is still not proving proof that the 1999 referendum failed due only to disagreement amongst republicans, and that if a directly elected presidential system were put to the vote it would succeed. It is still only opinion.
Kim Beazley's comments are also skewed as he too is a staunch republican, and he is still only offering his opinion as one. His words too do not verify that disagreement amongst republicans led to the failure of the referendum. After all, he has no numbers to say just what the proportion of "dyed-in-the-wool monarchists" was compared to "direct-election" republicans. The votes of a majority of monarchists would still overshadow those of a minority of direct-election republicans.
The Guardian newspaper articles are again only opinion, and published in a newspaper with strong republican leanings (they advocate the abolition of the monarchy in Britain). In fact, the word "opinion polls" (notoriously unreliable, see those on the Canadian monarchy!) says it all.
Also consider this take on the results of the referendum from Australians for Constitutional Monarchy: It shows that the monarchist side too has its opinions on the failure of the republic referendum.
Basicly, the only factual numbers available are the results of the referendum: 54.10% NO, 45.13% YES However those numbers were distributed amongst monarchists, direct-election republicans, parliament-election republicans, those who didn't trust either republican side, those who said "if it ain't broke don't fix it," and those who just didn't care is completely unknown. Any analysis of the results is pure opinion.
Therefore, to say "Australia’s 1999 referendum failure was mainly attributed to a division in opinion on a republican formula" is nothing more than opinion. AKA, point of view.
Thus, the sentence should read as such, and not claim to be (pro-republican) fact. It should clearly say: "Australian republicans opine that Australia’s 1999 referendum failure was mainly attributed to a division in opinion on a republican formula..." gbambino

Michaëlle Jean succeeds Adrienne Clarkson as governor general on October 1, 2005[edit]

more detail in this news feed from CBC

and on the PMO's website:

photo of GG's flag incorrect[edit]

Please add new photo of revised flag (without lion's tongue out).

The GG's flag did not have the tongue sticking out from 1999-2002. Before 1999, and since 2002, the tongue sticks out. See Canadian Mike

Romeo LeBlanc removed the tonge for some reason. see this page [2]
The flag currently depicted on the Governor General's website, and the cimier (the crest) uptop on the national coat of arms, retains that favourite tissue of ours; moreover, upon visiting Rideau Hall earlier, they left the tongues in place on the stained-glass windows, et al. As a segue: LeBlanc's decision infuriated me (sticks tongue out!). :) E Pluribus Anthony 00:42, 18 November 2005 (UTC)

Dispute: First female GG[edit]

Under appointments, it says Catherine Tizard was the first female GG in the commonwealth, but Jeanne Sauvé held the office long before she did. --20px Spinboy 23:55, 27 September 2005 (UTC)

Books by former GG's[edit]

I have created a section on the page to list the autobiographies of former Governor General's. From what I can tell there are only two, Buchan, Massey with Clarkson's forthcoming. I figured since several GG's like Frederick Hamilton-Temple-Blackwood, 1st Marquess of Dufferin and Ava wrote a books they could also be listed on this section but since its not really revelant to their time as GG perhaps not. I would like some feedback before I keep adding. Dowew 03:28, 21 November 2005 (UTC)

Adrienne Clarkson effort[edit]

I am currently working on bringing Adrienne Clarkson's page up to FA status and would appreciate any help anyone interested could provide. As it stands now the section on her time as GG and controveries are a HUGE mess - also I was working on bringing the refernces up to stuff and had them sectionalized so that they wouldn't get out of order - and then someone went and put them in a Notes section with all of them out of order (like #1 is listed as #11 !!!! that just driving me crazy ! ) thus far I have beefed up the section about her early life and it looks pretty good ) - like I said, if anyone cares to help out come on over Dowew 20:16, 26 December 2005 (UTC)

Precedence re:St. John of Jerusalem.[edit]

"knight of justice/dame of justice cross of the order and prior and chief officer in Canada of St. John of Jerusalem". This reads very awkwardly. Using this and Venerable_Order_of_Saint_John as sources, I am going to change it to: "Knight/Dame of Justice, Prior, and Chief Officer, of the Most Venerable Order of the Hospital of St. John of Jerusalem in Canada and wearing the white cross of the order." Capitolization is on purpose. Exit2DOS2000TC 08:20, 17 October 2007 (UTC)

Fair use rationale for Image:Can-pol w.jpg[edit]

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GA Review[edit]

Hi, I'm doing the GA review according to the criteria in Wikipedia:What is a good article?. I haven't read the article yet so it may take a day or two. Cheers! Wassupwestcoast (talk) 03:23, 13 December 2007 (UTC)

  1. Prior to reading this article, I read the Canadian Encyclopedia entry to get up to speed. This article does not compare favourably. For example, there is an abrupt ending of the history part - 'The wars and beyond' - with Michener. The next section is labelled 'Controversy'. Shouldn't the article finish bringing the history up to date before going on to 'Controversy'. In other words about forty years of history is missing. The article is also unbalanced. There is a lot of trivial 'controversy' - at least it reads that way - from 2000 to Nov 2007: be careful of recentism. Another problem is the references.
  2. The references must give full citations. For example, Ref 5 "^ E. Hoxie, Frederick (1996). Encyclopedia of North American Indians, 284." has neither publisher nor ISBN. Likewise, Ref 8 "^ Judd, Denis (2001). Empire: The British Imperial Experience from 1765 to the Present, 287." Refs 7,9 and 10 "MacNutt, W. Stewart (1955). Days of Lorne, Chapter 2.", "Borden; Memoires, 1:601-2" and "Hubbard. Pages 141-142." are minimalist to the extreme. What is Borden? I don't see a full reference anywhere. Hubbard is only partially at Ref 33. Ref 37 "Unless noted otherwise, source for information in this section is found in: Hubbard, R.H.; Rideau Hall; McGill-Queen’s University Press; Montreal and London; 1977 " would work in a printed work but this is Wikipedia. An editor can come along at any time and insert text into this section breaking this reference.
  3. There are numerous sections where in-line citations ought to be. I indicated one with a 'fact' tag. In other words, the article is under referenced.
  4. Out dated references."Emerich Edward, John; Dalberg Acton Acton, Ernest Alfred Benians, Sir Adolphus William Ward, and George Walter Prothero (1909). The Cambridge Modern History, 346-34. " This reference is from 1909!
  5. The contributing authors need to consult printed books from their local library. There must something other than news websites.

According to the Wikipedia:What is a good article?, I am GA Failing the article based on 2(a) and 2(b). and 3(a) and 3(b).

2(a) The article does not provided references to all sources of information.
As stated above, the references are not fully expanded.
2(b) The article does not provide in-line citations from reliable sources for counter-intuitive statements.
"Samuel de Champlain became the first unofficial Governor of New France" where unofficial is counter-intuitive.
3(a) The article does not completely cover the major aspects of the topic.
example: The missing forty years of history form 1960 to 2000
3(b) The article goes into unnecessary details
Lots of details on controvsies since 2000 but only a token from before.

I think there is too much work still to do on this article. I did enjoy reading it. If you disagree with my assessment (and remember it is just me reviewing) you could submit it for GA Review. Or, you may submit it for a fresh GA nomination at any time. Perhaps, you'll get a reviewer that isn't as obtuse as me :-) Cheers! Wassupwestcoast (talk) 04:20, 14 December 2007 (UTC)

Image copyright problem with Image:GG-OC.jpg[edit]

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Resident vs. citizen, place of birth[edit]

The "Appointment" section has repeated references to residents vs. non-residents. This seems an odd emphasis. GGs prior to 1952 by virtue of their post usually became residents of Canada even if they'd never set foot there before. In fact the issue was one of citizenship: what makes Vincent Massey noteworthy is that he was the first Canadian citizen to hold the post of Governor General. See:

Related to this, the fact that Adrienne Clarkson and Michaelle Jean were both born outside Canada is not really relevant (although it is somewhat noteworthy), as they are both Canadian citizens.

- Electric Landlady (talk) 00:09, 4 December 2008 (UTC)

Who chose them?[edit]

The article is pretty unclear on the historical changes in who chose the governors-general. In particular, it does not explain when it flipped from their being chosen by the British prime minister (as it certainly was in the 19th century) to being chosen by the Canadian prime minister. Was this in 1931, with the Statute of Westminster, or in 1947, at some point before 1931? john k (talk) 23:12, 11 January 2009 (UTC)

De Gaulle's Speech[edit]

Why it is written that Charles de Gaulle's "Vive le Québec libre" speech was delivered in Quebec City? As he said, "Vive Montréal ! Vive le Québec ! Vive le Québec libre ! Vive, vive... Vive le Canada français ! Et vive la France !" Jusfiq (talk) 03:45, 30 August 2009 (UTC)

First off, don't be rude. Secondly, you haven't removed anything, and shouldn't; Michener's presence at the event is verified by a reliable source. [ed. following retraction of rudeness and claim] If the city is incorrect, simply fix it; nobody's here to do your bidding. --Ħ MIESIANIACAL 03:38, 30 August 2009 (UTC)

chronological list anyone?[edit]

Could someone please put a chronological list of GGs in the page ?

Also, could someone add explanations on how long a GG is supposed to stay in office, why each change happened ?

Also, why GG and not "viceroy" ?

Any links to provincial lt.Govs ?

Thanks (talk) 02:50, 3 October 2010 (UTC)

List of Governors General of Canada
Lieutenant Governor (Canada) --Ħ MIESIANIACAL 15:06, 3 October 2010 (UTC)

Advice to the Sovereign[edit]

The article claims that GG is appointed by the Queen "on the advice of her Canadian prime minister only" however the web page cited (the Queen's official website) to back that up doesn't actually say that, it says the GG is appointed on the "advice of the ministers of Canada" not the prime minister alone. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:29, 27 June 2011 (UTC)

File:Massey-Diefenbaker-1958.jpg Nominated for speedy Deletion[edit]

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This article, like the GG office, is trying to "Canadianize" the monarchy. This may be noble, but it is worrisome that the office (and many commentators that support this movement) can ignore the constitution's crystal clear determination on the matter. The claim that the Militia Act give the title of commander-and-chief to the GG may be true, but that Act cannot trump the constitution. Before 1982, it was possible to argue that the Militia Act and the British North America Act were of equal status. After the repatriation in 1982, this ambiguity was no longer possible. Likewise, the royal proclaimation by the King indicating that the GG as commander in chief is also of no legal effect as a royal proclaimation cannot change the law or the constitution. If the King could change the constitution unilaterally it would no longer be a constitutional monarchy! The two absolutely clear and relevant constitutional passages are as follows:

1. The Constitution Act, 1867 "s. 15 The Command-in-Chief of the Land and Naval Militia, and of all Naval and Military Forces, of and in Canada, is hereby declared to continue and be vested in the Queen."

2. Constitution Act, 1982: "s. 52. (1) The Constitution of Canada is the supreme law of Canada, and any law that is inconsistent with the provisions of the Constitution is, to the extent of the inconsistency, of no force or effect."

The Governor General's Office and wikipedia should reflect what the constitution says, rather what some wish that it said. — Preceding unsigned comment added by CaperBill (talkcontribs) 18:47, 9 May 2012 (UTC)

Canadian English[edit]

I recently changed the article to normal Canadian English spelling, since it has strong national ties to Canada, but since my change was reverted, I would like to start a discussion on it. Specifically I would like to the article to use -ize instead of -ise. See WP:ENGVAR, WP:CANSTYLE and Canadian English#Spelling and dictionaries for why -ize is preferable in articles relating to Canada. Indefatigable (talk) 01:54, 13 May 2012 (UTC)

Unnecessary source[edit]

One issue that is quite special to be worth an entry if it meets the guidelines below, or if an acceptable subject of specific standards included in the base, this does not guarantee that an issue needed to manage as a separate, stand-alone page! The authors may at their option to merge or to group two or more related topics in a single section and Only if an item has received significant coverage in reliable sources that are independent of the specific matter, is considered to be encyclopedic. By the other way, verifiable information and content that is not supported by many independent sources may be suitable for inclusion in another section. -- (talk) 02:10, 12 July 2012 (UTC)

Adrienne Clarkson - visible minority[edit]

She was the first from a visible minority,. It's of interest which minority. If we're going to mention it at all, there's no reason to be vague and require people to go elsewhere to look it up. I've added a few words explaining it. (talk) 18:24, 12 December 2013 (UTC)