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By Elizabeth Dylan

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Cartoon



Seal Clubbing & Canada

Unfortunately the concept of seal clubbing has become synonymous with the image of Canada.

"Seal hunting, or sealing, is the personal or commercial hunting of seals. The hunt is currently practiced in five countries: Canada, where most of the world's seal hunting takes place, as well as Namibia, the Danish region Greenland, Norway, and Russia. Canada's largest market for seals is Norway " (Quote)

From this opening description on Wikipedia's definition of seal clubbing it is clear how, although there is an attempt to show that places have seal clubbing, Canada is presented as the major contributor of this activity. This idea of seal clubbing brings about a very negative image of Canada. It helps to promote the "primitive" ideas about Canada. It has brought about negative publicity for Canada from many animal activists.



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Activist Photo



http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7qrtdcz6ugU

Footage of Danny William's battling the McCartney's on Larry King live regarding the seal hunt.

By Elizabeth Dylan






Gordon Lightfoot, "The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald," Summertime Dream, 1976.


The legend lives on from the Chippewa on down
Of the big lake they call Gitche Gumee
The lake, it is said, never gives up her dead
When the skies of November turn gloomy.

With a load of iron ore - 26,000 tons more
Than the Edmund Fitzgerald weighed empty
That good ship and true was a bone to be chewed
When the gales of November came early

The ship was the pride of the American side
Coming back from some mill in Wisconsin
As the big freighters go it was bigger than mostexternal image gordon-lightfoot-sundown-424910.jpg
With a crew and the Captain well seasoned.

Concluding some terms with a couple of steel firms
When they left fully loaded for Cleveland
And later that night when the ships bell rang
Could it be the North Wind they'd been feeling.

The wind in the wires made a tattletale sound
And a wave broke over the railing
And every man knew, as the Captain did, too,
T'was the witch of November come stealing.

The dawn came late and the breakfast had to wait
When the gales of November came slashing
When afternoon came it was freezing rain
In the face of a hurricane West Wind

When supper time came the old cook came on deck
Saying fellows it's too rough to feed ya
At 7PM a main hatchway caved in
He said fellas it's been good to know ya.

The Captain wired in he had water coming in
And the good ship and crew was in peril
And later that night when his lights went out of sight
Came the wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald.

Does anyone know where the love of God goes
When the waves turn the minutes to hours
The searchers all say they'd have made Whitefish Bay
If they'd put fifteen more miles behind her.

They might have split up or they might have capsized
They may have broke deep and took water
And all that remains is the faces and the names
Of the wives and the sons and the daughters.

Lake Huron rolls, Superior sings
In the ruins of her ice water mansion
Old Michigan steams like a young man's dreams,
The islands and bays are for sportsmen.

And farther below Lake Ontario
Takes in what Lake Erie can send her
And the iron boats go as the mariners all know
With the gales of November remembered.

In a musty old hall in Detroit they prayed
In the Maritime Sailors' Cathedral
The church bell chimed, 'til it rang 29 times
For each man on the Edmund Fitzgerald.

The legend lives on from the Chippewa on down
Of the big lake they call Gitche Gumee
Superior, they say, never gives up her dead
When the gales of November come early.

The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald, Wikipedia

This is just one of the many Canadian song that helps to represent a larger image of Canada. Many different areas of Canada have their own unique culture, but there is an overwhelming sense of unity within it as well. Canada's devides are more based geographically and spacially, than with borders. 'The Rockies', 'The Praries', 'Central Canada', "Quebec :)" and then 'Atlantic Canada'. All social constructs based on geographical space. This division based on space has also allowed different variations on the 'Canadian Culture' to take place, but still there are certain aspects that make us "unmistakable Canadian". Drinking songs are one of those aspects. This is the type of Canadian musical culture that can be sung from British Columbia to Nova Scotia.

By Elizabeth Dylan



Some other examples of songs that represent the Canadian image:

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Great Big Sea "The night pat murphy died"


Spirit of the West "Home for a Rest"


Chumbawamba "Tubthumper"



The music of Canada is just as diverse as the people who live here. This diversity has helped shape our perceptions of who we are as Canadians, and projects a sense of unity while still maintaining regional and local differences. Canada is a major contributer to the international music industry, and many of those artists, composers, and musicians are proud to be from Canada. The concept of a Canadian home is a large influence on their music. The Canadian musical industry carries with it a representation of Canada itself and of the people who live here.

By ELIZABETH DYLAN




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I really enjoyed reading all of the Canadian poetry presented in class on Tuesday (Jan 18) but it made me constantly go back to the thought of the one Canadian poem that really has been the beginning of a true Canadian identity. When we see the first World War as a time where Canada really grew up to become its own country, this poem really helped solidify our identity as Canada, instead of just the British Dominion of Canada. The poem I am talking about of course is Flanders Fields by John McCrae. It really speaks to the growing up of Canada and especially the quick growing up we had to do during the first World War. I think every Canadian knows that poem and what it means for Canada, but it is also amazing to think how international that poem has gone. I have personally heard the poem recited in the United States, Australia and England during various remembrance ceremonies.

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie,
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.


The poem in its essence is a message that all Canadians should listen too. No matter what generation we belong to, we have all taken up the torch from the previous generation, and is our responsibility to carry on with the traditions and customs of Canada.

By Ken Butterworth

*Flanders Fields, Wikipedia; TriBoomer: Flanders Fields Picture



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Canada Denies MS treatments...
When i got to thinking about Canadian image one of the most troubling stories I have recently come across is one challenging Canadian healthcare. A new multiple sclerosis (ms) treatment available that has had pretty significant results. Recently local within Nova Scotia's south shore area have embarked on a journey to the United States for this 'experimental' treatment. Why would Canadians be forced to travel abroad for this treatment? Is Canada not known to be a model country for its heathcare? When I think about one of the Canadian benefits that adds to our countries image, healthcare is on the top. I have heard many remark about being glad they live in Canada because of its healthcare benefits. So why is Canada not living up to this image? Because of a lack of research into this treatment. So therefore while other countries have already done the research and have started performing the treatment, Canada is laging behind while its MS patients suffer.
This now news making story has worked against the projection of Canada as a warm arms open wide, take care of all image. This is a more realistic look into the reality of medical procedures of Canada and how the policies that were put in place to protect us have now hindered us. Prolonging MS patient treatment, that may just be a true cure. Who knows how many other experimental treatments are being withheld from Candian patients because of policy and procedure. Canada according to its image shoule be at the forefront of the medical expedition, according to its reputation as being a frontier. But instead we are laging behind, holding onto to old policy that may no longer be the best for Canadian residents.

THIS IS THE TREATMENT AND MEDICAL BREAKTHROUGH THAT CANADA IS WITHHOLDING FROM ITS CITIZENS:


HERE IS A 10K RUN TO TRY AND GET CCSVI TO CANADA:

Here a great video about a woman in Germany who had this treatment and the improvements it has made in her life:
WATCH ME!

http://ccsvi.balconyblog.com/?p=263
http://ccsvi.balconyblog.com/?p=52
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BY ELIZABETH DYLAN

THIS DAY IN CANADIAN HISTORY:
January 29. 2011


1967
Ottawa Ontario - Terrorists bomb Yugoslav Embassy in Ottawa and Consulate in Toronto.

1985
Fredericton NB - New Brunswick Premier Richard Hatfield found not guilty of possession of marijuana; drug discovered in his bag during Royal Visit security search Sept 25th; he claimed it was planted.


1897
external image otd.98.01.29.b.gifOttawa Ontario - Ishbel, Lady Aberdeen, wife of the Governor General, helps found the Victorian Order of Nurses at the request of the National Council of Women; name chosen to recognize Victoria's Diamond Jubilee. Here she is (centre, book) with her husband and the Council in 1898.


1946
external image otd.98.01.29.a.gifHaiti - Racing schooner Bluenose sinks after striking a reef off Haiti; built by Smith and Rhulandat at Lunenburg, and launched March 26th, 1921, the ship was invincible in races. She was sold as a Caribbean cargo ship in 1938. Here is a MacCaskall photo of her in her glory, signed by her captain Angus Walters.
On this day...






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THE IMPORTANCE OF CANADIAN HISTORY AND THE CHALLENGES TO HERITAGE



Canadians prize themselves and their image on knowing where they have come from and use it to project themselves in present day. History is important to Canadians and there is a large emphasis put on what young Canadians should learn about. Canada has various groups of minorities which were not properly represented in early textbooks. Many leaders of these minority groups have made a conscious effort to correct the mainstream history and gain more representation. The course of high school Canadian history is a complex one as more and more groups are arguing for a place in an already growing text book.
History is not just being debated in the school systems, it is also being argued over as a part of factuality in Canadian Heritage. As more emphasis on minority groups grows so does the amount of interest from historians. Historical evidence that was taken at being fact, is not being disputed. Many Canadians are upset by this because of how important personal history and heritage is to the Canadian population. The largely white Canadian population has long had the final say it what is released to the public. People feel personally threatened by this when their own heritage is threatened, mainly the white population. As minority groups, such as the Native Canadians, bring out issues concerning mistreatment and inequality, some groups do not except these concepts. Residential schools and genocides are largely ignore, this could partially be due to the lack of representation these event had and have in mainstream Canadian history.

BY ELIZABETH DYLAN

JANUARY 30TH, 2011


1868
Halifax Nova Scotia - Nova Scotia legislature opens first session after Confederation



1966
Ottawa Ontario - Government announces that over 100,000 Canadians aged 69 are now eligible for $75 Old Age Security pensions.



1985
Ottawa Ontario - Federal government states that metric measurement will continue to be mandatory, but retailers can use the imperial system at the same time



1991
Toronto Ontario - The Hudson's Bay Company announces it is selling its fur business due to declining sales; the HBC was originally founded as a fur trading company in 1670.



1948

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St Moritz Switzerland - Canadian team attend opening of the fifth Winter Olympic games in St Moritz. Among those attending is Barbara Ann Scott, who will win the Gold in Figure Skating, and the RCAF Flyers ice hockey team, who will also take home the gold.
On this day...

BY ELIZABETH DYLAN



CANADIAN FILM INDUSTRY
It is not surprising that Canadian films take in less that 3 % of the box office earnings per year in the North American box office. It is mostly because the distribution companies around the world are American controlled. The fact that our films take in a fraction of the box office earnings in the run of a year, doesn’t accurately paint the picture of Canadian film industry. Internationally we are known for being creative and for always pushing the boundaries. Not only are we the ones who make this aggressive content, we are the ones who usher in new genres as well. The ‘camp movie’ genre in which our poor helpless children are being watched over by a group of slackers/jocks/cocky adults/ etc. Was created and pioneered by Canadian film maker Ivan Reitman starring Canadian actors in a distinctly Canadian atmosphere. There are a few concepts in film and television that most would not know had Canadian origins. The first being the realistic teen high school show. This of course being Degrassi, it pioneered not only the genre but the careers the young Canadian actors as well.
Next is a genre that we didn't necessarily create but we carved our own piece of. The genre I am referring to now is the horror genre. Directors such as David Cronenberg have created horror sci-fi classics with cult followings. Videodrome is a journey into the mind but through a TV and it makes a striking comparison to big networks vs. Canadian networks. As well as that observation he also inserts characters based of famous Canadian theorist Marshall McLuhan. While the faux civic TV station used in the movie is also based off city TV of Toronto which used to air edgy and provocative content in the 70's and 80's. While these examples are from the last 20-30 years the distinct Canadian film identity has not been lost.
Dartmouth Nova Scotia director Jason Eisener has been setting a violent pace with the release of his first feature film “Hobo with a Shotgun”, which premiered at the 2011 Sundance film festival and is getting raving reviews. Is it possible that a distinctly Canadian film is going to be somewhat of a financial success yet again? Only time will tell if this film will make any money. Regardless the Canadian film industry and its identity are still as strong as they were even compared to the 70's Canuck-spoliation era.
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Source: Toronto Star News Article
Audio Commentary

BY KYLE LARKIN



HOCKEY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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If there ever was a single thing that should go along with the "Invention of Canada" it would have to be the wonderful sport of Hockey. While not our official sport here in Canada, many Canadians consider it to be our unofficial official pastime. Hockey is a sport that brings Canadians everywhere together. This is done through championships such as the 2010 Olympic Gold medal in hockey, cheering on our favorite Canadian teams or players and through playing minor league or for us older people "beer" hockey. The traditions of hockey can be best exemplified by this song by Stompin' Tom Connors that i'm sure every Canadian knows off by heart:



By: Ken Butterworth




TODAY IN CANADIAN HISTORY

FEB 10 2011

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maple leaf

Today's Canadian Headline...
1763
FRANCE GIVES UP CANADAParis France - France signs Peace of Paris ending the Seven Years War. France gives up Canada, keeping only St. Pierre and Miquelon and part of Louisiana; Spain cedes claims in the northwest, gets California.
1939-

And in Today's Canadian Birthdays...

Adrienne Clarkson 1939-external image otd.98.02.10.a.gif
broadcaster, born Adrienne Poy on this day at Hong Kong in 1939. Clarkson came to Canada with her parents in 1942 following the Japanese invasion. After getting an MA from the University of Toronto, she attended the Sorbonne in Paris, then returned to Toronto in 1965, where she started her TV career as a CBC host of such shows as Take Thirty, Adrienne at Large and the Fifth Estate. After stints as a novelist, diplomat and publisher, she returned to broadcasting in 1989 as host of the arts show, Adrienne Clarkson Presents. [Photo: CBC, Fred Phipps]

BY ELIZABETH DYLAN



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CANADA'S MULTICULTURAL POLICY FROM A SOCIOLOGICAL POINT OF VIEW

This commentary questions the sociological credibility of Canadian multiculturalism policy. It is argued that most ethnic groups lack the structural resources to transmit their cultural heritage. The notion of symbolic ethnicity is introduced to explain the type of ethnicity persistent in Canada today. It could be argued by the points in this article that there may not be an overarching Canadian culture. Canada is a mesh of cultures and ethnicities, each bringing their own cultural perceptions of Canada with them. Minority groups do not seem to have penetrated into a Canadian culture, but is that because they lack the structural resources or because Canadian culture is not culture but just a romanticized image of the Canadian people. If this were true then the image we have of Canada may be true, but the culture of Canada may be something deeper and less defined. It would incorporate the various ethnic groups that make up Canadian society.


Canada's Multicultural Policy From A Sociological POV
Canada's Image of Multiculturalism or Immigration?
Canada's Image of Multiculturalism or Immigration?


CBC'S WHO WE THINK WE ARE:





By ELIZABETH DYLAN





The Internet is the new forum of change in the world. It is a medium in which today’s most important messages are spread. Weather it be official news sites like the BBC, or a social media platform such as facebook if you want news to spread all you need to do is plant a seed and the online communities will flourish and an important story will spread.With the increasingly low cost of high speed Internet it is no wonder that the Internet is the new medium of spreading popular news. What happens when the amount of time, or specifically the amount of information that one can view in a month is limited? The Canadian public seems to be up in arms about the newly imposed CRTC ruling that will force smaller Internet service providers to put caps on their bandwidth per customer. The argument is that the larger companies, who own the infrastructure in Canada and are supposed to lease their resources to the smaller Internet Service Providers (ISP’s) in order to encourage competition. The larger companies reason that usage based Internet billing will save people money because it will charge heavy Internet users more and those who just surf and use email will have lower bills saying that it is more fair to the consumer. The problem with this reasoning is that many services that are becoming more popular, such as Cable alternatives like Netflix require bandwidth to stream their content to your living room. Say your limit is 25 gigabytes per month, and you watch one hour long show from Netflix every night. If your program is in high definition, which most are because of the availability of high definition televisions, you cant expect 1-1.2 gigabytes of Internet used for that show. You can begin to see the problem that the caps might impose on even “light” Internet users who just surf and watch the occasional show on their computer or entertainment device. Recently the ruling made by the CRTC has been overruled because of pressure to the conservatives from the public, but it is our responsibility as the public to ensure the option for unlimited Internet usage so we can maintain the forum in which our world is changing.

source:
http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/article/932571--ottawa-to-reverse-crtc-decision-on-internet-billing

Heritage Moment Critical Analysis- Alexander Keith's

The Pride of Nova Scotia. Alexander Keith's has provided Nova Scotians with a brand of beer that mirrors the heritage of a large portion of Nova Scotia's Scottish descendents. While this heritage moment reflects in large part only the Atlantic Canadian citizenry, its following is loyal. Alexander Keith's has been distinguished by its commercial campaign devoted to the creation of a brand representing commonalities shared by its following; a love of beer, a distinct society, and an element of patriotism. Some examples include Keith's legendary "Spilly-beer drinker" and "label peeler" commercials featured below. They attempt to mimic the loyalty of Keith's Nova Scotian and growing international consumer body by placing the beer on a pedestal. By shunning those who de-label a bottle or spill even a drop of the "Pride of Nova Scotia" Keith's as promoted an element of prestige around the beverage.
As I'm sure all Nova Scotians are aware, alexander Keith's Brewery was opened in 1820 and has survived confederation, the Great Depression, and two world wars. Its brand has been consistent, and apart from the recent decision to move a portion of its brewery to other parts of Canada has remained the beverage ambassador for Nova Scotia for almost two centuries. Alexander himself played a role in Nova Scotian history serving as the mayor of Halifax between 1843-1844. This element of longevity has strengthened the patriotic symbolism associated with the brand.

By Mathias Durnford




A NEW MOMENT IN HISTORY...

DEAR CLASSMATES,
I THINK THAT IN LIGHT OF WHAT HAS TAKEN PLACE IN JAPAN IN THE LAST FEW DAYS, I THINK THAT AS CANADIANS IT IS IN OUR NATIONALISM TO HELP OTHERS. PLEASE DO ALL THAT YOU CAN TO SUPPORT THOSE WHO ARE HELPING OUT AND THOSE WHO HAVE SUFFERED. THESE PLACES MAY BE THE HOMES OF OUR FELLOW CLASSMATES.
PLEASE LET’S PAY THEM THE BEST OF OUR ATTENTION, EVEN IF IT IS JUST A POST ON THIS BLOG. I WILL BE POSTING UPDATES ON THE “SEAL CLUBBERS” PAGE TO KEEP ON TOP OF CANADA’S INPUT INTO THIS DISASTER. I READ THE EFFORTS THAT CANADA PUTS FORTH TO HELP THOSE IN NEED; IT IS AID EFFORTS LIKE THIS THAT MAKE ME PROUD TO BE A CANADIAN. THIS COURSE HAS HELPED US ALL TO BRING AWARENESS TO WHAT IT MEANS TO BE CANADIAN. IF YOU ARE FROM HERE, BE PROUD. IF YOU’RE FROM AWAY, YOU GET TO VIEW A GREAT ASPECT OF CANADA’S NATIONAL IDENTITY. IT IS ONE OF THE PASSION FOR OTHER HUMANS AND ATTEMPTS TO RELIEVE HUMAN SUFFERING.
THANKS SO MUCH

-LIZ DYLAN

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It is within the Canadian image to help out those in need, and to project a positive image of reconstruction. Canada reinforces and maintains this image each time it comes to aid of an ailing area. The questions here are the motives, Japan is a large economic player and supplies Canada with many goods as well as buys many goods. It is in the best economical interest to get Japan back up in working order. It is disguised as Canadian generosity but really supports many hidden motives. For example conditions are still desperate in Haiti, an area that when hit covered Canadian newspapers and televisions. Canadians kicked into action to help out, but after the news cameras were gone so was the emphasis on humanity to those in need. Things are terrible in Haiti, but because it was a poor country to start out with, and does not support Canada or the economy with anything of great significance, it was ignored. Japan on the other hand will be back in the economical market faster than imagined.

Japanese centre will meet to map out earthquake aid


While officials at North York's Japanese Canadian Cultural Centre are urging people to give money immediately to the Canadian Red Cross in the aftermath of Friday's earthquake and tsunami in Japan, they will meet Tuesday to determine what more they can do to help victims of the devastating natural disaster.
"We're going to do our best to raise funds and help them out, like we did with the Kobe earthquake (that killed more than 6,400 people in 1995)," said Sid Kiyoshi Ikeda, the centre's special ambassador.
Ikeda is also founder of a Japanese-Canadian network of 19 organizations, which will meet Tuesday evening at the cultural centre at 6 Garamond Ct., northeast of Don Mills Road and Wynford Drive.
They will determine what fundraising efforts they can launch to send aid to Japan.
While Ikeda was born in Canada and has no family or friends living in the region hit by the earthquake and tsunami, he said his and everyone's hearts go out to the victims.
He likened the situation to the tsunami on Boxing Day 2004 that left more than 230,000 people dead in 14 countries.
"It (the devastation of Friday's earthquake and tsunami) is just shocking. It is just unbelievable. It is just unimaginable, the horrors of natural disaster," Ikeda added.
The cultural centre was almost empty Friday morning as staff and residents stayed home to watch the disaster unfold and to try to contact loved ones in Japan, executive director James Heron said.
While not of Japanese origin, he lived in the country for 11 years.
His wife, Masayo, is Japanese. She has two sisters and a brother who live in Tokyo and her parents live in the southern part of the country.
Her family is safe but she is worried about the whereabouts of a close friend, Heron said.
One of Masayo's sisters told them she was sitting under the kitchen table worried about aftershocks while she waited for her husband to make it home.
"I'm very anxious" about destruction unfolding in Japan, said Heron, adding many of his friends in Japan have posted messages on Facebook saying they are OK.
"It is so early in the game and the images we're seeing are so devastating. My concern is, what will the loss of life be? What will be the damage to Japan?"
In the wake of the earthquake in Japan, which measured 8.9 on the Richter scale, St. John Ambulance sent out a statement advising Ontario residents to have an earthquake plan.
"The widespread damage and loss of life (in Japan) has prompted St. John Ambulance to remind Ontarians that despite our geography, we are still vulnerable to earthquakes," it said.
"Each year nearly 5,000 mostly small earthquakes are recorded in Canada, and over the last 100 years, Canada has registered at least nine with a magnitude greater than 7. A magnitude 6 earthquake has the potential to do extensive damage in developed areas. It is believed that a strong quake near one of Canada's major urban centers would likely be the most destructive natural disaster our country could experience.
Tips include bolting heavy furniture to the wall, installing latches on cupboards and drawers, finding safe spots such as under sturdy furniture to go in the event of an earthquake and having a 72-hour survival kit and stocked first aid kit.
For more information, visit www.emergencymanagementontario.ca
The cultural centre can be reached by visiting www.jccc.on.ca or calling 416-441-2345.
To contact the Canadian Red Cross, visit www.redcross.ca or call 416-480-2500.
REFERENCE: http://www.insidetoronto.com/news/local/article/966073--japanese-centre-will-meet-to-map-out-earthquake-aid


THE GLOBE AND MAIL REPORTS...
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/world/asia-pacific/japan-rocked-by-powerful-earthquake-and-tsunami/article1938072/

THE METRO...


Canada offers aid, sympathy to stricken Japan



Canada offers aid, sympathy to stricken Japan
Canada offers aid, sympathy to stricken Japan



Published: March 11, 2011 4:50 p.m.Last modified: March 11, 2011 4:52 p.m.
GUELPH, Ont. - Prime Minister Stephen Harper is extending Canada's "heartfelt condolences" and a helping hand to the people of quake-stricken Japan.


Harper spoke Friday with Japan's ambassador to Canada to say the country's thoughts and prayers are with his people after a powerful earthquake that triggered a devastating tsunami.


"I offered any support and assistance that may be needed by that country," Harper told a news conference in Guelph, Ont.


"Our officials at the Canadian embassy in Tokyo are working with Japanese authorities to determine whether any Canadians have been injured by the earthquake or the tsunami."


Harper also acknowledged the potential risk of the tsunami's waves reaching Canada's west coast; residents of Vancouver Island spent the morning under a tsunami advisory as they kept a wary eye on the shoreline.


Although the advisory was still in place, it appeared as if the worst had already passed, Harper said.


"My understanding is there are good emergency plans in place, particularly in that part of the country for this particular type of event," he said.


"I'm told by people who have lived on the west coast that there are tsunami plans and there are regularly exercises to test those out. It does look as if the worst has passed."


Authorities are on notice and prepared to deal with any emergencies, he added.


Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty was also among those political leaders who extended their sympathies to the families of the victims.


"We have strong ties with Japan and its people," McGuinty said in a statement.


"When a natural disaster happens on the other side of the world, our global ties remind us of how connected we are."


The 8.9 magnitude temblor, one of the worst in modern history, erupted off the northeastern coast of Japan near the city of Sendai, promptly unleashing a seven-metre tsunami that left a swath of devastation deep inside the island nation's eastern shoreline.


BY ELIZABETH DYLAN


GET OUT AND VOTE: Political Participation and voter turnout in Canada
On May 2nd Canadians from coast to coast will cast a vote in favour of whomever represents their issues the most, well some Canadians will vote. The 2008 federal election boasted a whopping 58% of Canada's eligible voters, that's almost 25% less than the 1988 "Free Trade" vote which recorded approximately 75%. In fact, more people (80%) watched the men's hockey final during the 2010 winter olympics than voted in 2008. Although these numbers are troubling they aren't surprising; Canadians are becoming less politically engaged, issues of contempt (Poor Bev Oda), Corruption (Carson), and the issue of a lack of political difference in Canada makes most eligible voters shrug their shoulders.. "Why bother?" The issues associated with a lack of Canadian identity can be directly associated with a politically unengaged civil society. Western alienation, the constitutional underrepresentation of the Quebec nation.. Regionalism has plagued the Canadian political agenda for decades. We need to embrace this diversity, not shrug our shoulders. Head's up folks, especially those between 18-24, the less you vote, the less politicians care about your vote! Rick Mercer puts it beautifully in his March 29th rant.

By Mathias Durnford




ELECTION COMPASS HELPS YOU VOTE!!!


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The Canadian Broadcast Corporation (CBC), has unveiled an awesome online tool to help aspiring voters here in Canada decide who they should vote for. The tool asks 30 questions about various political issues that effect Canadians here. I encourage all of the readers here to click on the link bellow and take the quiz, you might be surprised what party you belong too!

And don't forget, on May 2nd, get out and VOTTTEEEEE!!!!!!!!!!!

Link: http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/canadavotes2011/votecompass/

Ken Butterworth




Will a Canadian Team lift up the Stanley Cup This Year????




If anyone is following the race for spots in the NHL playoffs, you would know that one two Canadians teams look like they will be making it into the post season. What does this mean for us Canadians? Well, having six of the 30 NHL teams up north, the probability of one of our teams winning is already low. When only two of our teams make it into the post-season, those chances go down even more! But wait, there is still a chance!

The Vancouver Canucks have secured first place in the league and are 10 points ahead of the next team! While our numbers in the post season may be low, having a strong team like the Vancouver Canucks is certainly something to cheer about! So when the NHL post season starts next week, put down your text books, forget about that exam and go cheer on your Canadian clubs! Its about time the cup was brought back to Canada!!!

by: Ken Butterworth


BLUENOSE: Canadian Legacy.
The iconic Bluenose (and its replacement Bluenose II) have been an important national monument for Atlantic Canadians since it won its first International Fishermans Race in October 1921. Its legacy has envoked a sense of pride revolving around its undefeated record while participating in the North Atlantic Fishermans Races, while simultaneously offering an element of escapism in times of strife. Although its fishing career was short, it recorded some of the highest recorded catches produced by schooners. While Bluenose's home port is officially Lunenburg Nova Scotia, it has acted as an international ambassador for Canada at several World Fairs and international events. The Bluenose legacy revolves around hard-work, courage and determination, characteristics valued by most Atlantic Canadians. The ship's Captain; Angus Walters, experienced a near celebrity status during his career aboard Bluenose due in part to his knowledge of the sea and his ship, as well as his bravery at sea. The Bluenose provided Atlantic Canadians with an element of escapism during the depression and into the 1930s when economic turmoil in the region limited the ability of its people to find and secure jobs.
Bluenose has since provided the region with a recognition of its history of sail, and thousands of tourists annually. Its is represented by an unnamed schooner featured on the Canadian dime that symbolizes its importance to the nation as a whole. While the age of sail has long past, Bluenose continues to remind Atlantic Canadians of a simplier time when economic dependence was centred on international trade, and fishing.

By Mathias Durnford

Canada: Peace-keeper or peace enforcer?
There is a common misconception among Canadians that revolves around our role in conflict resolution and avoidance. While our history boasts an impressive reputation as being committed to providing support in areas of conflict, such as the Suez crisis, we have since strayed away from being involved in U.N. peacekeeping missions in favor of a more interest based method of conflict selection. While Lester Pearson did play a major role in the invention of a U.N. peace-keeping force, our limited personnel resources in the armed forces have been divided in recent decades more in favor of North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) events than that of the U.N.. Although most military action in recent decades (Bosnia, Kosovo, Afganistan) have been justified by the Canadian population as being favorable to the citizens of the respective countries we assist, they have been at the disposal of NATO rather than that of the U.N..
This is an important fact to acknowledge because unlike the U.N. which is representative of a large portion of the countries of the world, NATO represents a much smaller group of nations mostly based in Western Europe and North America. While we as Canadians can easily justify being involved in conflict over seas, those uninvolved in NATO may not hold our troops in the same high regard that we as Canadians do, while the U.N. peace-keeping coalition might have more support from a much broader group of nations.

By Mathias Durnford

The Role of Social Media in the Upcoming Canadian Election
The upcoming federal election has provided candidates as well as constituents with a new medium through which they can project and injest political news, social media. While social media has been throughly used by a growing number of the Canadian population, its application since the last federal election has increased significantly. Twitter and Facebook especially have been harnessed by political parties to project their platforms, give voice to candidates, and allow citizens to participate in political rhetoric 24/7. The real-time updating application of Twitter enables leaders to debate with one another from opposite sides of the country while allowing Canadians to follow along, and even join in. Although the tool is seemingly benificial to the democratic process it has its drawbacks as well.
One major problem associated with social media and its political application is its tendency to further polarize political parties. The ability to effectively filter those you follow on Twitter or add as a Facebook friend allow the user to ignore other party's platforms and candidates. Another limitation posed by social media is its inherent ability to reduce the formal process of government to 140 characters. An example includes the debate between PM Stephen Harper and Industry Minister Tony Clement on the CRTC's decision to bill data customers based on usage rather than a flat fee. A debate that should have taken place in the House of Commons occured over Twitter.

By Mathias Durnford




A Day in the Life of Our Canadian Soldiers


Have you ever wondered what a day in the life of on of our brave soldiers is like while he or she is on deployment in Afghanistan. While every soldier on deployment has a different job and different responsibilities, their schedules all reflect the fact that they are working 7 days a week, for 6-8 months. We owe a lot to these brave men and women in uniform. This exert is from a Toronto Star article in 2006:

FORWARD OPERATING BASE ROBINSON—Pte. Mark Brownell, going through the alphabet as he rattles off the names of singers and rock bands, is stuck at the letter "I.''

Then, triumphantly: "Iggy Pop!''

The 26-year-old driver of this LAV — light armoured vehicle — gets an approving whistle from his crew commander, Master Cpl. Tom Cole. It's the middle of the night in the Afghan desert, and these men are playing trivia games as tracer fire arcs overhead and the lumbering LAV dips precariously into a wadi.

Brownell, known as Brownie, has been driving for close on 20 hours straight. His eyeballs are rimmed pink from staring at his thermal video monitor, the only way he can navigate the forbidding terrain, keeping his vehicle within a military column more than a kilometre long.

It was Cole who seized upon this trivia quiz as a ploy to keep Brownie awake and alert. Machine-gunner Shaun Felix has already been hauled from his perch, replaced up top by air sentry Pte. Jason Joe.

Since this arduous land move begun, a Bison has been crippled, several LAVs have strayed off into the darkness and been corralled, two other LAVS have been seriously compromised by mechanical problems but slapdash-mended, a couple of young Canadian infantrymen have been injured in a bizarre sideswiping accident, and a donkey has been turned into roadkill. (Prompt compensation to its owner: $50 U.S.)

Just about everything that could go wrong has, save for a fatality, in the opening phase of Mission Dagger, the deployment of Charlie Company plus a battery of howitzers to a beleaguered forward operating base in Helmand Province, 180 kilometres west of Kandahar City.

On 20 of the past 45 days, Forward Operating Base Robinson has repelled attacks by well-organized Taliban fighters. This is where Pte. Robert Costall died last week. The northern gate of the satellite base, metres from where 22-year-old Costall fell, will be named for him.

Twenty-three hours after launching from Kandahar Airfield, this Canadian soldiers-to-the-reinforcement operation humps into the forward base, Charlie Company soldiers falling almost dead in their tracks upon arrival around 7 a.m. yesterday, collapsing around their vehicles, curling up in the dirt, arms flung over their faces to shield themselves from the sun.

The mission, as detailed in orders the previous evening, was deceptively simple but logistically complex: Show force, blunt the brash assaults that have been waged against Forward Operating Base Robinson by a hard-core Taliban militia, reinforce the satellite base that has been primarily manned to this point by Afghan troops and American special forces, render the base secure until the arrival in force, later this month, of British troops, and be prepared to move on, if necessary, for a similar bolstering assignment at the U.S. provincial reconstruction team base at Lashkar Gah.

"Domination of the battle space,'' as Maj. Bill Fletcher, company commander, had put it, when outlining orders on Saturday night.

Upwards of a hundred Taliban are operating from three clusters of the villages in the area under the command of four identified leaders. Tactics used already by the enemy: Indirect fire (mortar, rockets), ambush, clever exploitation of terrain, forays in weapons-armed Toyotas, improvised explosive devices, suicide bombers (of which, Canadian intelligence indicates, there are five now in situ, preparing to hit in Kandahar City).

A new wrinkle in the suicide bomber threat last week: The vehicle-borne suicidebomb and improvised explosive devices, which had been pressure-plated or wire-activated to this point. Thus, the Canadian column is under strict instructions to keep the vehicles close together.

It is the improvised explosive device (IED) and suicide bomber threat that will, under the plan as devised by Lt.-Col. Ian Hope, battle group commander of Task Force Orion, push the convoy off the risky highways and into the desert. But nobody could have foreseen the miseries that would befall the column.

Just beyond the outskirts of Kandahar City, privates Dawson Bayliss, 22, originally from Kirkland Lake, and his air sentry cohort, a 23-year-old Toronto native, Daniel (surname not released), were injured in a weird highway incident.

A heavy "jingle truck,'' veering too close against oncoming traffic, had hit the turret gun on a LAV, spinning the turret around. The cannon barrel swung 360 degrees, slamming into the faces of the two air gunners standing in their hatches. One, horribly bloodied, fell down into the lap of an embedded reporter. The other also crumpled into the interior.

The two were evacuated by helicopter, their injuries not considered life-threatening. Within minutes the military column was back on the move.

As the Canadians finally reached the forward base, Afghan army forces, who've been at this lonely outpost for ages, smile in greeting. They will be relieved of this assignment shortly, when the British deploy, hopefully taking over an area that has, by then, been pacified by the Canadians.

"They're getting out of Dodge,'' noted Fletcher wryly.

Next time you see a soldier, think of this! and say thanks!

by: Ken Butterworth







TIM HORTON`S COFFEE FROM CANADA - WHEN GOOD TIM HORTONS COFFEE GOES BAD


external image tim-hortons-coffee.jpg



Tim Hortons... those of you who have never visited Canada might not be aware, but "Tim Hortons" is a national institution in the Great White North, with close to 3000 locations across the country. Tim Hortons coffee, named/founded after a former Toronto Maple Leaf hockey player, was first sold in 1964. Today, in addition to Tim Hortons locations in Canada, there are over 400 Tim Hortons stores located in the US. Just the other day, Tim Hortons opened up its first 12 new locations in New York City.

Many loyal customers however, are very concerned about a recent decline in the quality of the coffee we have been drinking. More specifically, we have been frequently subjected of late to burnt coffee.
On behalf of these good and loyal customers, the following letter was sent to Tim Horton's corporate headquarters in Hamilton, Ontario:......







Letter to Tim Hortons Customer Service


Dear Customer Service / Person in Charge of Calming Down Upset Coffee Drinkers at Tim Hortons:
Being a patriotic Canadian, I have been addicted to the life-affirming caffeine of Hortons coffee for many decades now. In fact, as an infant, I preferred to suckle on a pacifier dipped in a medium double-double, rather than on my mother's teat.
I have shunned the triple-grande-foam-mochalino-caramel-biscottichino of imported caffeine houses (like the one that uses a naked prostitute-mermaid for a logo), in favor of the java being sold in the name of the great former hockey star. As I do not serve in the military, I naturally feel that my loyalty to Tim Horton's is the most patriotic thing I can do. In fact, I planned to give out Tim Hortons gift cards for Xmas this year to all my family and friends (as well as a $200 gift card to my future wife as a wedding present in place of a less meaningful engagement ring).
Yet I have noticed a disturbing trend of late... burnt coffee.
Today, I waited in a typical Tim Hortons morning line up (approximately 7 and 1/2 hours) for my 1st of 17 daily coffees. I actually ordered two coffees: one for myself, and one for my boss at work.
I opened the lid of my coffee cup with the anticipation of an obese child opening the wrapper of a chocolate bar which had been smuggled into a summer camp fat farm.
What did I taste as I had my first sip? Not the taste of your near-orgasmic coffee, but something so burnt is seemed as though it had been brewed amongst the fluids of my 2001 Honda Civic's engine.




Mr. Tim Horton

If he was alive today, what would former hockey great and Tim Hortons Coffee chain co-founder Tim Horton say if he knew that his coffee was being cruelly destroyed?
If he was alive today, what would former hockey great and Tim Hortons Coffee chain co-founder Tim Horton say if he knew that his coffee was being cruelly destroyed?
If he was alive today, what would former hockey great and Tim Hortons Coffee chain co-founder Tim Horton say if he knew that his coffee was being cruelly destroyed?

Sadly, I have been conditioned to expect such disappointment, as the problem is not isolated to one Tim Horton's franchise, but is spreading across the land. I would estimate that at least 20% of the coffees I order from Timmy's has been burned (20% of $1000 = $200 worth of destroyed coffee) I shun to think of the sadness the Colombian coffee farmers would feel if they knew that the beans for which they toiled were so badly treated.
Worse yet, when I brought back the coffee for my boss, she took one sip, looked at me and said "THIS is exactly why you will never be promoted". I estimate that the fall out from this one burnt coffee will be responsible for a future salary loss of approximately $100,000 over the course of my career.
It is with great sadness I write to you in the hope that something can be done to easy my pain, as well as that of the thousands of loyal Tim Hortons coffee drinkers who rely on Hortons coffee each and every day.



COMMENTS
After reading this article it is not hard to see the devotion that Canadians have for their 'Timmies'. The donut is Canada's unofficial food, and is used to create an America equivalent.
"To criticize the donut, is to criticize Canada." - Steve Penfold.
Since the creation of Tim Horton`s donuts and coffee have become synonymous with its name. We can look at our history as Canadian consumers in comparison to the emphasis put on commodities such as Tim Horton`s. It is very hard to separate us from being a Canadian citizen and us being a Canadian consumer. Society says that Canadians love their Timmies, so to be a good Canadian we buy it. But then we are being a consumer. This concept of mass consumption makes it difficult for individuals to distinguish what it means to be a Canadian from what it means to be a Canadian consumer. Because of Canada`s history of being an exporter and its fight to become one in itself, we get the deep rooted notion that we must buy Canadian products. We are being a good consumer, but we are also being a good citizen. We are buying into the stereotype of Canadian lifestyle. Because Tim Horton`s is all around us it becomes incorporated into our daily lifestyle and becomes almost a rite of passage for those entering into Canada. Tim Horton`s has projected the image of itself as a place of refuge, a coming home for Canadians. The commercial message papers over the differences of the people.Tim Horton`s is a national symbol that creates a sense of community and obsession for Canadians.








By ELIZABETH DYLAN