Highlights of this day in history: Arab oil embargo fuels energy crisis; Americans clinch revolutionary victory at Saratoga; Deadly quake hits northern California; Mobster Al Capone convicted of tax evasion; Playwright Arthur Miller born. (Oct. 17)
It was supposed to be a dream vacation.Taylor Jones had purchased two round-trip tickets to Orlando, Fla., to visit Disneyworld — a surprise birthday and graduation present for his girlfriend Marissa Lyne-Boehm."We're both big kids at heart," said Lyne-Boehm, as Jones chuckled in agreement.But then, the flights were cancelled by WestJet due to the pandemic, signalling the beginning of a four-month battle to get a refund of the more than $1,000 spent on tickets instead of receiving a travel credit.In the wake of COVID-19, the airline industry has been rocked, with many companies opting to offer credit instead of refunds despite that being illegal in B.C., Canada and the United States.Consumer complaintsThe tickets were purchased in February before the pandemic. But as the virus spread, international borders closed, travel bans were enacted and the airline industry saw mass cancellations.In June, Jones began to contact WestJet, first through an agent at Expedia, where he had purchased the package, then independently. Each time, he says he was told to call back at a closer date to the trip and the refund would be issued.A week before the Sept. 27 departure date, Jones received an email that the trip was officially cancelled, but when he called to request a refund, he says he was told that WestJet would only provide WestJet Dollars — travel credits with a 24-month expiration date."This is tough times for everybody. [I've been] trying to be understanding," said Jones. "I really tried to work with them, but it just felt like a big betrayal."And the couple isn't alone in their frustration. The Canadian Transportation Agency [CTA] says it has received almost 11,000 complaints since mid-March.Although it hasn't been able to categorize all the grievances yet, it said "we expect a portion of these will relate to vouchers and refunds."Airlines aren't above the law: advocateThe rules on flight refunds are clear in both Canadian and American law."WestJet's position is based on the misconception that somehow the airline can override the law," said Gábor Lukács, an air passenger rights advocate, who points to B.C.'s Consumer Protection Act as the first line of defence.It says that if a contract is cancelled, the supplier has 15 days to issue a refund after the notice of the cancellation.As well, Canada's Air Passenger Protection Regulations says that if an airline is unable to provide a reasonable alternative itinerary, refunds "must be paid by the method used for the original payment and to the person who purchased the ticket or additional service."Finally, by law, WestJet must follow the rules set out by the U.S. Department of Transportation [DOT] because the round-trip flights travelled either to or from the country."Airlines must obey the law. If they don't like the law, they can lobby parliament to change the law. Until the law is changed, they have to obey the laws as they are today," said Lukács.In April, the DOT issued an enforcement notice to all air carriers operating in the U.S. that reinforced the rules."The longstanding obligation of carriers to provide refunds for flights that carriers cancel or significantly delay does not cease when the flight disruptions are outside of the carrier's control," it said.Keeping the cash and the customerIt's no secret that the airline industry is currently in crisis mode. There have been massive layoffs at the Vancouver International Airport, regional airports are pleading for federal aid and, earlier this week, WestJet retreated from Atlantic Canada."I think it's dire ... is the simple word," said David Gillen, YVR professor of transportation policy at the University of British Columbia.He says there are a few simple reasons why airlines choose to offer credits over refunds, chief among them: cash flow."Airlines operate on cash flow. This allows them to keep the cash," he said.As well, it allows the airlines to keep the customer."If the customer has WestJet dollars, rather than Canadian dollars, then they don't have the freedom to spend it on other activities."In a statement to CBC News, WestJet said its decision to offer credits is backed up by CTA's announcement that airlines can temporarily offer credits due to the pandemic.But the CTA clarified that it was a suggestion to airlines, adding that anyone unhappy with a refund could file a complaint."To be clear, it did not relieve any airline otherwise obligated to pay refunds from doing so," it wrote in a statement.While WestJet believes it is covered for Canadian flights, it did say that it is in the process of offering some refunds."We have been processing refunds to the original form of payment for guests holding some international itineraries that were cancelled by WestJet due to the COVID-19 crisis," it wrote.Fortunately, Jones and Lyne-Boehm would appear to fit that criteria, however, when asked if they would be issued a refund, WestJet failed to respond."It's not the consumer's responsibility to help bail them out on this and the fact that they didn't even give us an option was even more frustrating," said Lyne-Boehm.Now, the couple will continue to wait and fight for their refund.CBC Vancouver's Impact Team investigates and reports on stories that impact people in their local community and strives to hold individuals, institutions and organizations to account. If you have a story for us, email email@example.com.
BC Ferries has banned a dozen anti-mask protesters from sailing for the day after they caused a disturbance and verbally abused other passengers Saturday morning. The disturbance happened on the 8:30 a.m. PT sailing from Departure Bay to Horseshoe Bay according the the corporation."BC Ferries has a mandatory mask policy," said BC Ferries spokesperson Deborah Marshall. "We don't tolerate this type of behaviour."The group was believed to be travelling to the B.C. Freedom Mega Rally 2020 event, which is being held Saturday and Sunday at the Vancouver Art Gallery. Marshall says the corporation called West Vancouver police, who met the ship at the Horseshoe Bay terminal. Corporal Neil Schafer says the initial report from BC Ferries indicated there were 12 anti-mask protestors, but when officers arrived they said the group was about 50 people.Schafer says multiple officers responded to the group when they disembarked from the ferry, but Schafer says by then things had calmed down. "Our officers had a couple interactions with a few of the protestors. Again nothing much of note, and really had de-escalated into a non-incident," said Schafer.No arrests"There were no arrests. There was nothing violent, no weapons from the protestors and our officers just stood by and kept the peace."Schafer says the participants in the disturbance were permitted to continue on their way.BC Ferries said they banned approximately 12 of the participants for at least the rest of today. It also said the ban could be extended.The Queen of Oak Bay was delayed about 45 minutes as a result of the incident. According to the Facebook page for the B.C. Freedom Mega Rally, the group is opposed to censorship, lockdowns, mask and vaccine mandates, social distancing and contact tracing, among other things.
New Brunswick should further seal the Atlantic bubble by eliminating blanket quarantine exemptions for those who work outside the province, say two epidemiologists who have been following the success of the bubble. "You've got a good set-up, don't mess it up," said Raywat Deonandan, a global-health epidemiologist and an associate professor at the University of Ottawa. Infection control epidemiologist Colin Furness had similar advice."If you keep that policy in place, you're going to see cases."But how can New Brunswickers know what to think?Private informationA travelling worker is one possible source of the outbreak in Moncton at the Manoir Notre-Dame special care home, where 19 people — residents, workers and family members — tested positive for COVID-19 the first week. And the public isn't being told how the outbreak started. Citing privacy, Dr. Jennifer Russell, the chief medical officer of health, has refused to divulge the nature of the transmission at Manoir Notre-Dame, including whether it began with a traveller who didn't self-isolate properly or with a travelling worker who was exempt from self-isolation.Without having to self-isolate, an infected traveller could have gone about his or her business and unknowingly infected someone who then visited the special care home. Deonandan said it's important for the public to know how the Moncton outbreak began so that people can adjust their behaviour if necessary. Knowing will help prevent repeating it in the future, he said. "There is something to be said for making public the mechanism of transmission so that people understand the seriousness of it," said Deonandan. He said it's a balancing act that Public Health has to master — between protecting the public at large versus protecting an individual's privacy. "I'm sympathetic to Public Health's job here, but if you were to ask me, I would err on the side of being transparent about the pathway of infection."Graphic transparencyOttawa Public Health has been more forthcoming — and graphic — with the information it releases. The belief is that the public should fully understand how not following the rules can impact so many. A recent graphic tracks the spread after a person with mild symptoms attended a wedding in September, where there were no masks and no physical distancing.Fifteen days later, 207 people were self-isolating and required testing. There were 22 confirmed cases and one presumptive. That outbreak from a single case at a wedding infected eight households — including five members of one home — a school, and a group home. It also forced the self-isolation of students in a second school because of a presumptive case. "Kids missed school, their parents couldn't work & testing lines were longer. Our. Actions. Matter," stated the tweet. All of that information was released publicly, said Katie Bourada, a registered nurse who does communications for Ottawa Public Health.She said the intent is to educate the public and illustrate how one person can affect hundreds of others by not following the rules. Doctor shares good newsRussell has been asked at recent briefings how the virus got into the Manoir Notre-Dame, but has only ever said it's travel-related. She said the only reason she shared that information was because it was good news — it means the case wasn't community-transmission, which would mean they don't know the cause. Russell hasn't always taken such a firm position. For months, she announced almost every new case by saying it was travel-related and the person was self-isolating.But not in the case of the Manoir Notre-Dame. Reporters have never asked Russell to identify the person, only to describe what the person did wrong.As recently as Friday, the Department of Health was asked to clarify the source and specify whether someone hadn't properly self-isolated.Public gets what's 'pertinent'Department spokesperson Bruce Macfarlane responded by email on Friday afternoon, saying Russell had provided what the public needs to know and has been as transparent as possible, while protecting private information. "Throughout this pandemic, Public Health always provided the pertinent information the public needs to take measures to protect themselves," Macfarlane wrote. Public Health's stance, which is backed by Premier Blaine Higgs and three other political party leaders, doesn't address whether the public is getting enough information to know if government measures to protect people are adequate. More knowledge about the Moncton outbreak, for instance, might help the public consider the travelling worker exemptions.Higgs dropped requirements in June for people to self-isolate after returning to New Brunswick from working in parts of Canada outside the Atlantic bubble.But even a returning worker who doesn't have to self-isolate isn't supposed to visit any kind of long-term care facility. The province's rules say they have to "avoid contact with vulnerable individuals." Deonandan said blanket exemptions such as those given to travelling workers are risky. > Parents had to miss work, kids had to miss school & 105 more people in line for testing. All from a BBQ. Our actions matter \- Ottawa Public Health"You want a bowl, not a sieve," he said. "You want a solid barrier with controlled access, not leaky borders that introduce potential super-spreading events."Furness called the exemptions "reckless." In fact, he said, there's an argument to be made that travel for work is even more dangerous than travelling to visit family. Travelling for work usually involves taxis, staying in hotels, eating in restaurants. And if it includes air travel, the risks are even greater, he said. "Travel for work is one risk after another, all piled on top. If anything, I might suggest that people should be more compelled to self-isolate." Self-isolation done incorrectly is another possible source of the Notre-Dame outbreak.Regardless of what the local rules are for travellers when they return home, Furness said people should self-isolate for 14 days. Ideally, they would leave their car at the airport and avoid contact with taxi drivers and even family members. He said they should also really take self-isolation seriously — that means absolutely no contact with anyone else. For those who live with others, it can become tricky, especially with shared bathrooms and confined spaces. If contact can't be avoided, the entire household should self-isolate, he said. 7 days better than noneFurness acknowledges the financial and mental health toll that such an approach can take. At the very least, he said strict self-isolation should last seven days. "There might be an argument for lessening the quarantine period," he said. After all, he said, the majority of people who catch COVID-19, show symptoms within the first seven days. The second week acts as an extra precaution to catch all possible cases. "If the current guidance says don't isolate at all, then seven days is infinitely better," said Furness.And, regardless of what rules are in place, travellers should "not go visit grandma."What happened at a barbecue"You need to think about your obligation to people around you. And that's where going above and beyond guidance would be a good idea."The stakes are just too high, he said. After all, according to another graphic from Ottawa Public Health, this is what community transmission looks like: "a 40-person BBQ in a park led to 105 high-risk contacts in schools who had to self-isolate for 14 days & be tested. Parents had to miss work, kids had to miss school & 105 more people in line for testing. All from a BBQ. Our actions matter."That, too, was a real case, with all of the details shared by public health officials.
Friends and family spent Saturday searching Fredericton for New Brunswick writer Richard Vaughan.They put up posters to raise awareness about his disappearance. "I think for a lot of members of the community, they were very concerned about Richard being missing," said Jenna Lyn Albert, who helped organize Saturday's search for Vaughan."This is all a way of feeling like we're helping and gives us a chance of finding information that would help find Richard."Fredericton police posted on social media on Tuesday that the 55-year-old author was last seen the day before on Aberdeen Street.The police don't suspect foul play, but would like to locate Vaughan or verify that he's safe. Albert said volunteers met at the Fredericton public library on Saturday morning and about 20 people went out from there to search. More were expected to join the effort in the afternoon. The search will focus on the city's trail system and some places Vaughan spent time, like UNB. Volunteers will also put up posters in the city's downtown, uptown by the mall, the north side and along the trails. Albert is the current poet laureate for the city of Fredericton. She met Vaughan when he was artist in residence at UNB and has been working with Vaughan on an anthology of queer writers from New Brunswick. "He also emceed a few events that I took part in and his bubbly personality and charisma was immediately noticeable," said Albert. "He's not only an important part of the writing and artistic community. He's a crucial member of the queer community here in Fredericton and across New Brunswick." Albert said it's been a stressful past few days. "I think there has been a lot of anxiety for those who are seeking Richard out, wanting to have answers, and we're just trying to ease some of that anxiety and rule things out by doing some searching," said Albert.Volunteers will be at the library until 5 p.m. and Albert expects people will continue to search after that.
When Cheryl Shellenberg checked in on her horse Jonesy as she was racing him to a veterinarian, he was dead in his trailer, his eyes rolled back and his tongue sticking out. The 18-year-old quarter horse had died in agony of colic as Shellenberg, 62, was stuck in Powell River, B.C., waiting in line to get on a ferry across the Salish Sea to Comox on a Sunday morning in late September. "I felt terrible that I'd let him suffer," Shellenberg said, choking up. "Had I known this was how his life was going to end, I would have got somebody out on Saturday with a gun and we would have shot him."For Shellenberg and others on the Sunshine Coast, a bullet to the head is the most humane emergency care they can access for their horses. The Society of B.C. Veterinarians says there has been a shortage of veterinarians throughout the province for years, but the issue has gotten worse during the pandemic as more people take in new pets and COVID-19 protocols restrict the number of people inside clinics. "We know for sure that animals are suffering for lack of veterinary care," said Corey Van't Haaff, the society's executive director. "And we know for sure they're dying."The problem is most acute in rural areas, but urban pet owners have noticed it as well. Some veterinarians in Vancouver are reporting wait times of up to six weeks. 'We're busier than ever'Inside Dr. Rob Ashburner's 900-square-foot clinic near the intersection of Cambie Street and King Edward Avenue, veterinary technicians and assistants dodge a 12-pound tabby named Hugo as they take calls, set out treats and ensure all their supplies are stocked in time for the first appointment of the day. "We're busier than ever," Ashburner said, standing in the examining room at the West King Edward Animal Clinic."From a business point of view, that's good. But we feel badly because our patients go without proper care, or have to delay care."Most of Ashburner's patients have to wait about two weeks for an appointment. Urgent matters are referred to the emergency hospital, which costs more. Ashburner says he would love to hire another veterinarian for his clinic, but in B.C. that task is "almost impossible." According to a report the Society of B.C. Veterinarians commissioned two years ago, there is a growing shortage of about 100 vets each year in B.C.To help solve the problem, Ashburner and other veterinarians want the Ministry of Advanced Education to pay for more spots for B.C. students at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine in Saskatoon — the closest place in Canada where B.C students are eligible to train. 20 new spots availableCurrently, the province pays the college for 20 B.C. students each year at a cost of about $2 million. The students pay $11,000 for each year of the four-year program.Twenty new spots became available this fall because Alberta has chosen to invest more in its own program, for Albertan students, freeing its seats up. But B.C. declined to take advantage of the opportunity, choosing instead to renew its current level of funding. The ministry said it couldn't comment on the situation because of the upcoming election. Van't Haaf says she has tried for at least two years to meet with Melanie Mark, the minister of advanced education in the last government, but said Mark did not return her calls. "We did not understand why she would not provide these extra seats for very necessary veterinarians," Van't Haaf said. Some of the extra spots did get taken up by 16 students from B.C., Ashburner says, but because they're not funded students need to pay about $60,000 in annual tuition. Ashburner says not only is that unfair, it's unsustainable because the average salary for veterinarians in B.C. is about $85,000 per year.The society is looking at other avenues to attract more veterinarians to the province. One of them is making it easier for foreign-trained vets to become accredited here. But for Ashburner and his colleagues, funding more training and taking advantage of the 20 new spots at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine is one of the clearest solutions available. "We as veterinarians feel the shortage is a very correctable problem," he said.
"I am deeply concerned about the suspicious fire and confident that investigators will find the answers they need to hold those responsible to account", Blair said in a statement. "I have now approved a request from Nova Scotia's Attorney General to enhance the presence of contracted RCMP resources as needed in that jurisdiction in order to keep the peace", he added. Earlier in the day, the fire led to a man being admitted in hospital with life-threatening injuries, the RCMP said.
VANCOUVER — Police in West Vancouver were called to meet a BC Ferries vessel as it docked in Horseshoe Bay on Saturday after people opposed to public health restrictions aimed at fighting the spread of COVID-19 caused disturbances on board. BC Ferries spokeswoman Deborah Marshall says the group of so-called anti-maskers departed from Nanaimo at 8:30 a.m. on Saturday and it's believed they were heading to an event in Vancouver dubbed the "freedom rally." She says members of the group were verbally abusing mask-wearing passengers, so police were called to meet the vessel when it arrived. Marshall says anyone identified as being part of the group was banned from making a trip with BC Ferries for at least the rest of the day, so they would have to find a different way home. She adds the remaining sailings between Departure Bay and Horseshoe Bay have been delayed about 45 minutes because of the incident. Videos posted to Twitter show a crowd bearing anti-mask and anti-vaccine messages rallying outside the art gallery in Vancouver and the Facebook page for the event indicates a second rally is planned for Sunday. Const. Jason Doucette says the Vancouver Police Department estimates the crowd reached about 1,000 people at its peak on Saturday. Police in West Vancouver could not immediately be reached for comment. This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 17, 2020. Nicole Thompson, The Canadian Press
Kids and seniors have some different options this year when it comes to getting vaccinated against the flu in B.C., and that could mean an extra dose of protection or avoiding the needle altogether.For most of us, the standard influenza shot from a pharmacist or doctor will be the only choice.But if you're a child or over 65 and living in long-term care or assisted living, things could be a bit different.CBC spoke to Monika Naus, medical director of the communicable diseases and immunization service at the B.C. Centre for Disease Control about the different options for the 2020/21 influenza season.Here's what she said:What are the options for kids?A needle isn't necessarily the most comfortable experience for anyone, but children between the ages of two and 17 have the choice of receiving their vaccination through a nasal spray called FluMist."In the studies that have been done of this product [...] it seems to perform very well in kids, but less well in adults," Naus said.The spray hasn't been available in recent years, but it's back for this season and can be obtained from your local health unit, as well as some pharmacies and doctors' offices.However, it's not an option for toddlers under the age of two, who will still require a shot from their doctor.What about seniors?For people over the age of 65 who live in long-term care or assisted living facilities, an extra-potent version of the vaccine called Fluzone High-Dose is available and fully covered this year.This shot contains four times the concentration of antigens in a normal inoculation — these are the molecules that provoke an immune response.For seniors who don't live in care homes, though, this particular vaccine likely won't be available for purchase."What we've heard from the company that distributes this product is that they don't anticipate a private market," Naus said.However, there is a vaccine called Fluad that is specially formulated for seniors, with an ingredient called an adjuvant that has been designed to promote a stronger immune response in older people.Watch: Here are your flu shot options in B.C.And everybody else?For all other adults, the standard flu shot is the only option. It's available for free to pregnant women, health-care workers, people with certain medical conditions and front-line emergency workers — among others.The demand for the flu shot is unusually high this year in B.C. because of the COVID-19 pandemic, but Naus says that everyone who wants to be vaccinated will get their chance."We've certainly heard that pharmacists are saying that they're running out of vaccine," she said."But this program typically runs until about the middle of December, so there is lots of time to get vaccinated."Naus said supplies will be arriving throughout flu season, but it can take time to trickle down to health-care providers.
NEW YORK — Savannah Guthrie did more than just display her journalistic chops at NBC News' town hall with President Donald Trump. She changed the subject for her bosses. NBC was reeling heading into Thursday's event, under widespread criticism for scheduling it at the same time as ABC's town hall with Democratic opponent Joe Biden. NBC was accused of rewarding Trump for rejecting the debate commission's plan to do the second debate virtually. That was quickly forgotten when the president sat opposite Guthrie, who questioned him specifically on when he last tested positive for COVID-19 (he said he didn't remember), whether he had pneumonia (didn't say) and his personal finances. The Georgetown Law School graduate had clearly done her homework, seemingly prepared for each response. When the president recited a statistic from a study on the effectiveness of masks in spreading COVID-19, Guthrie had read it, too, and countered him. As host of the “Today” show, Guthrie knows the importance of time and how to stop an interview subject from filibustering. That background also teaches how to crystallize what an audience is thinking in a plain-spoken way, as evidenced in her most-quoted moment. She was incredulous when, after asking why Trump had retweeted a false conspiracy theory that American special forces didn't really kill Osama bin Laden, he said that he “just put it out there” to let people decide for themselves. “I don't get that,” Guthrie said. “You're the president. You're not like you're somebody's crazy uncle who can just retweet anything.” Similarly, Guthrie described the theory promoted online by QAnon that Democrats are running a satanic pedophile ring and that Trump was the saviour meant to stop them, and asked why he didn't denounce it. Trump said he knew nothing about it. “I just told you,” she said. Just because she says something doesn't mean it's true, the president retorted. “There's not a satanic pedophile cult," she said. “You don't know that?” Trump is “hands down” the most difficult public figure to interview, said Axios reporter Jonathan Swan, who with Fox News’ Chris Wallace and now Guthrie have received the most praise of any TV journalists to take him on this election cycle. “The biggest challenge with President Trump is that it’s never a linear conversation,” Swan said. “It’s like riding a bronco. The crafting of the questions doesn’t really matter because he responds to topics.” It requires enormous homework, both to know the facts and anticipate how Trump will respond, he said. Even then, it’s possible to become so absorbed in fact-checking that it disrupts the flow of conversation, he said. When Guthrie asked Trump about his personal finances and taxes, the president tried to cut off the conversation by saying what he has since 2016, that he couldn't talk about it because he was under audit. Guthrie said there was no law that prevented someone being audited from discussing his taxes, and pressed on: “Who do you owe $421 million to?" she asked. She jumped in when, during a discussion about White House events where masks were not worn, the president mentioned how he was touched by people at a reception for relatives of military members killed in service. “Do you believe a grieving military family gave you COVID,” she asked. She took an unusual amount of time for head-to-head questioning, given that the format called for questions from the audience to dominate the event. She followed up audience questions, too: When Trump talked about health care and maintaining protection for preexisting conditions, Guthrie pointed out that his administration was trying in court to eliminate that. One look online provided an illustration of Guthrie's effectiveness. Words like “condescending,” “badgering,” “argumentative" and “bully” were used on social media by supporters of the president. Memes popped up with Guthrie's face made to seem like a vampire or devil. “Why does anyone take Savannah Guthrie seriously?” tweeted conservative talk show host Buck Sexton. “She was clownish and shrill last night. Just awful.” Before an appearance in Florida on Friday, Trump called his experience with Guthrie “small potatoes.” “If you can't handle Savannah, you cannot handle Putin and President Xi and Kim Jong Un,” he said. But it clearly stuck with him. He brought the interview up again at at a second rally in Macon, Georgia: “Last night, she was out of line, I mean, in my opinion. She was out of line." The Nielsen company said Friday afternoon the Biden town hall reached 14.1 million people on ABC between 8 and 9 p.m. and Trump had 13.5 million combined on NBC, CNBC and MSNBC. Tim Murtaugh, spokesman for Trump's campaign, said even though the commission-sponsored debate was cancelled on Thursday, “one occurred anyway.” He said Guthrie played the role of debate opponent and Biden surrogate. Yet in declaring Guthrie one of the winners in Thursday's night of politics on television, the Vox website said her quick line of questioning, pushbacks and fact checks “probably made the White House wish they had just done the debate.” Besides giving NBC News executives a reprieve from dealing with online critics' call for a boycott, Guthrie helped restore the honour of the “Today” show. Her former partner, Matt Lauer, received wide criticism in 2016 for his questioning during back-to-back interviews with Trump and Hillary Clinton. NBC News said it wouldn't make Guthrie or network executives available to speak Friday about the performance. More than anyone, Axios' Swan understands the high stakes involved when interviewing Trump. “There's no question, because the scrutiny of every interview he does is so intense, that you can do enormous damage to yourself if you're not well-prepared," he said. ___ Associated Press writer Darlene Superville contributed to this report. David Bauder, The Associated Press
As Canada’s legal cannabis industry turns two on Oct. 17, 2020, licensed stores across the country are celebrating a jump in sales, with one retail expert saying the COVID-19 pandemic has been a “boon” for the industry. Jasmine Pazzano explains.
Ontario reported 805 new cases of COVID-19 and 10 new deaths related to the virus Saturday, as another Toronto-area public health unit imposed tighter restrictions on local long-term care homes. The new ban on all but essential visitors and caregivers went into effect in York Region amid what Health Minister Christine Elliott called an "alarming upward trend" in COVID-19 cases there. The government issued a statement saying the only visitors now allowed at the facilities in the region north of Toronto are those deemed essential.
Public Safety Minister Bill Blair has greenlighted a request for additional RCMP support in Nova Scotia amid criticism that Ottawa has not done enough to protect community members embroiled in a bitter conflict over a First Nations lobster harvest in that province. "Policing in Nova Scotia is within provincial jurisdiction," Blair said in a statement released Saturday. "I have now approved a request from Nova Scotia's Attorney General to enhance the presence of contracted RCMP resources as needed in that jurisdiction in order to keep the peace."The minister added that Nova Scotia RCMP had "increased their police presence in the affected area each day."His office told CBC News the request was approved on Friday and that the number of officers sent to the region will be determined by the province and its RCMP.RCMP spokesperson Sgt. Andrew Joyce would not provide specific numbers to CBC News, but said officers from local detachments, members from across Nova Scotia and officers with special training from Prince Edward Island were on the scene.The announcement comes after a fire levelled a lobster pound in Middle West Pubnico, N.S., Saturday morning. Nova Scotia RCMP have deemed the blaze suspicious and said a man is in hospital with life-threatening injuries. Joyce said the injured individual is an "adult male who is considered a person of interest." The fire broke out at one of two facilities in the province's southwest region that were targeted by commercial fishermen on Tuesday protesting the "moderate livelihood" fishery launched by Sipekne'katik First Nation last month. The fishery is operating outside the federally mandated commercial season, causing many commercial lobster fishermen to worry about its impact on lobster conservation. The Mi'kmaw, who were storing their catches at the facilities, say they are exercising their treaty right to earn a moderate livelihood from fishing, a right affirmed by a 1999 Supreme Court ruling. WATCH | Violence over lobster fisheries a disgrace: Indigenous services minister:"When Canadians see events like these, rightfully they act with disgust and they expect those in positions of authority to act, and that is what Minister Blair has done," Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller told CBC News. Miller reiterated that nation-to-nation talks are ongoing behind closed doors and said federal conversations with the commercial fishing industry will also need to happen.Sipekne'katik chief: 'Maybe it's time for the military'Sipekne'katik First Nation Chief Mike Sack said in a statement late Saturday that he is "grateful" in response to Blair's announcement. "While I believe some of the damage, destruction, racist behaviour, harassment and intimidation could have been addressed much earlier as we had repeatedly requested a greater police presence to protect our people and operations, we remain thankful for any and all support we receive."Earlier on Saturday, Sack had called on Ottawa to beef up the number of officers in the area.WATCH | Chief Mike Sack 'at a loss' after fire destroys N.S. lobster facility:"We're not told numbers in general, but very understaffed. Like, 300 commercial fishermen on the wharf, 40 or 50 of us [and] 12 officers," Sack said during a news conference Saturday. "Maybe it's time for the military to come in and assist."Sack has been increasingly critical of the federal government's failure to intervene in the conflict."You know, they're sitting in their office, safe as can be, saying we need safety out here. Send enforcement down. Like, do your job. Protect Canadians. We're all Canadians. Come here, protect us and don't just tweet about it," he said Thursday. In a tweet, National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations Perry Bellegarde said his office had contacted the RCMP and the federal government "to express First Nations' deep concern" in the wake of the blaze.Investigations into week's incidents ongoingThe RCMP's response to the week's events — which included an assault on Chief Sack on Wednesday — initially came under fire for failing to arrest those responsible for the violence."We are expecting the RCMP and police services to do their jobs and keep people safe," Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Friday."I think there's been some concern that that hasn't been done well enough and that's certainly something we will be looking at very closely."On Saturday, a Digby County, N.S., man was charged and arrested in relation to the assault. Investigations continue into Tuesday's lobster pound raids, which left vehicles vandalized and facilities damaged.Joyce defended the force's efforts to keep the peace rather than carry out arrests, telling CBC News Saturday that officers simply "did what they were trained to do in a position of being severely outnumbered."Blair said investigative teams are currently gathering evidence "to support any additional criminal charges necessary" and said provincial authorities will release further details as they become available.
A group connected to a local church in Prince Edward County is converting a school into a seniors home to relieve a growing problem that it says is due to the area's rapid transformation into a tourist attraction. Volunteers from Emmanuel Baptist Church have formed a registered not-for-profit organization that's started the project to turn the school into LoveSong Seniors Housing and Community Hub.Ken How, the project facilitator, said it's a response to the "massive impact" the county's popularity is having on the availability of housing for seniors."It's become a real tourist, Airbnb-type location," How said."Homes have doubled, almost tripled in value in the past five years. It's hard to believe how rapid change has occurred."He says while short-term rentals, craft breweries and wineries are proliferating in Prince Edward County, affordable housing is getting harder and harder to find, especially for the elderly.How and other volunteers went through the process of acquiring the property from the school board.The project has the full support of the Prince Edward County municipal government, which first purchased the property from the school board before transferring it to the LoveSong group for $375,000. Pinecrest Memorial School in Bloomfield was closed by the Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board in 2017.Government support"It was something that we felt we had to jump on," Prince Edward County mayor Steve Ferguson said in an interview."The popularity of this place has put pressure on our housing resources. The seniors population, which is disproportionately large, has felt the impact of that popularity," Ferguson said.LoveSong is now seeking seed and grant money from other levels of government. "I hope the federal government is receptive to their requests," Ferguson said.The sale to LoveSong was finalized earlier this month. The group is now working with local developers and architects to move into the next stage of the project: raising funds to renovate the vacant school.Although it will be costly — the goal is $10 million — How says it will be easier and cheaper than building a new seniors' home from scratch.The school has terrazzo floors and 10-foot wide hallways. They plan to keep the gym for fitness classes and other activities, both for residents and the broader community."It's in great shape," How said. They aim to open the complex for occupancy in 2022.The development will include 50 units, 25 of which will be affordable housing. The school property is 20 acres in total, and will also have a community garden. 'Outside the box'This isn't the first time an Ontario school has been converted into a seniors' residence. How says he toured several, including homes in Peterborough and Owen Sound.Some are privately run. But How believes LoveSong's community-based, not-for-profit approach to re-purposing surplus schools is an "outside the box" model that can catch on elsewhere."We've got to be looking at how we can do a better job," he said."I think the model is applicable throughout the province."
LOS ANGELES — Actress Rhonda Fleming, the fiery redhead who appeared with Burt Lancaster, Kirk Douglas, Charlton Heston, Ronald Reagan and other film stars of the 1940s and 1950s, has died. She was 97. Fleming’s assistant Carla Sapon told The New York Times that Fleming died Wednesday in Santa Monica, California. From her first film in colour, “A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court ” (1949) with Bing Crosby, Fleming became immensely popular with producers because of her vivid hues. It was an attraction she would later regret. “Suddenly my green eyes were green. My red hair was flaming red. My skin was porcelain white,” Fleming remarked in a 1990 interview. “There was suddenly all this attention on how I looked rather than the roles I was playing. “I’d been painted into a corner by the studios, who never wanted more from me than my looking good and waltzing through a parade of films like 'The Redhead and the Cowboy.' ” Before Reagan entered politics, the actress co-starred with him in “Hong Kong,” “Tropic Zone,” “The Last Outpost” and “Tennessee’s Partner.” “He surprised everyone because he never looked in a mirror,” she once said of Reagan. “How many actors can you say that about?” Fleming possessed a fine singing voice, and later in her career sang onstage in Las Vegas and in a touring act. In the big-studio era, many new personalities were publicized as having been discovered in quirky ways: Kim Novak while riding a bicycle past an agent’s office, Lana Turner spotted in a malt shop. In Fleming’s case, young Marilyn Louis was reported to have been headed to class at Beverly Hills High School when a man followed her in a big black car and told her, “You ought to be in pictures.” She eluded him, but he turned up at her home and offered to be her agent. Legend or not, at 19 Louis was awarded a six-month contract at the studio of David O. Selznick and a new name: Rhonda Fleming. She played a bit part in the 1944 wartime drama “Since You Went Away,” and then Alfred Hitchcock chose her to play a nymphomaniac in “Spellbound,” starring Ingrid Bergman and Gregory Peck. “I rushed home, and my mother and I looked up ‘nymphomaniac’ in the dictionary,” she recalled. “We were both shocked.” “Spellbound” led to another suspense film, “The Spiral Staircase,” in which she was strangled by the villain, George Brent. With Selznick concentrating on the career of his wife, Jennifer Jones, he lost interest in his contract players, and Fleming left the studio to freelance. Her next films: “Abilene Town,” a Randolph Scott Western; “Out of the Past,” a film noir with Robert Mitchum; and “Adventure Island,” a tropics thriller starring Rory Calhoun. She won a role in “A Connecticut Yankee,” a Crosby musical based on the Mark Twain story, after Deanna Durbin dropped out to retire to France. Crosby was so impressed that he recommended her to Bob Hope, with whom she starred in “The Great Lover.” Ironically, the Crosby/Hope films that established her as a luminary proved to be ones she was never able to top. She remained a star for 15 years, but except for the Lancaster-Douglas “Gunfight at the OK Corral,” most of her performances came in B pictures that exploited her looks. “I made the mistake of doing lesser films for good money,” she reflected in a 1976 interview. “I was hot — they all wanted me — but I didn’t have the guidance or background to judge for myself.” Among her 1950s films were “While the City Sleeps,” directed by Fritz Lang and co-starring Dana Andrews. She played Cleopatra in the 1953 film “Serpent of the Nile.” But many titles were forgettable: “The Eagle and the Hawk,” “The Last Outpost,” “Little Egypt,” “The Killer Is Loose,” “Slightly Scarlet,” “Crosswinds” and “Pony Express” (with Charlton Heston), “Inferno,” “Those Redheads from Seattle,” “Yankee Pasha,” and “Gun Glory.” After her film career cooled off, Fleming took a singing act to Las Vegas, appeared in TV shows and commercials, starred on Broadway in a revival of “The Women” and sang as the temptress Lalume in “Kismet” for the Los Angeles Civic Light Opera. She was born in Los Angeles in 1923. Her mother, Effie Graham, had appeared in a 1914 Broadway musical with Al Jolson, and her grandfather was a theatrical producer in Salt Lake City. She studied acting, but as a backup also took classes in shorthand, typing and bookkeeping. While still in her teens, Fleming married her high school sweetheart, Thomas Lane. A son, Kent, was born in 1941. When Lane returned from Army service, Rhonda had become a star, and the marriage ended in 1947. Three other marriages also ended in divorce, to Beverly Hills surgeon Lewis Morrill (1952-1958); actor Lang Jeffries (1960-1962); and producer-director Hall Bartlett (1966-1972). In 1977 Fleming married mogul Ted Mann, who built the Mann Theater chain, and the marriage lasted until his death in 2001. For many years, they lived in matching 4,300-square-foot condominiums, one on top of the other in a Century City high-rise. “I treasure my privacy, and Ted needs his,” she once explained. “We love each other very much. I’m much more fulfilled today than at any time in my life.” After Fleming’s sister, Beverly Engel, died of cancer in 1991, Fleming and her husband established the Rhonda Fleming Mann Resource Center for Women with Cancer at the UCLA Medical Center. They also was active in various other charities for cancer patients, children and the homeless. A couple of years after Mann died, Fleming married for a sixth time, to Derol W. Carlson, who died in 2017. ___ The late Associated Press correspondent Bob Thomas compiled material for this story. The Associated Press
WASHINGTON — Gone are the days when President Donald Trump held forth daily at the White House podium flanked by members of his coronavirus task force. And the days when Vice-President Mike Pence and other task force officials would head to Trump’s office to brief him immediately after their meetings. The White House won’t say when Trump last met with the task force. In the week since he emerged from coronavirus isolation, Trump has demonstrated new determination to minimize the threat of the virus that has killed more than 215,000 Americans and complicated his chances of winning another four years in the White House. “The light at the end of the tunnel is near. We are rounding the turn,” Trump told supporters Friday at an event in Fort Myers, Florida, one of many moments during a week of campaigning when the president tried to play down the virus threat. “Don’t listen to the cynics and angry partisans and pessimists.” In word and action, he is pushing an optimistic outlook even as coronavirus infections are spiking in Europe and public health officials are raising alarm that the infection rate in the U.S. is climbing toward a new peak. In the past week he has spread misinformation about the virus, undercut the nation’s leading infectious disease expert and kept up his practice of shunning mask use. The effort to diminish the virus has gone into overdrive as Democrats try to frame the race for the White House as a referendum on Trump’s handling of the worst U.S. public health crisis in over a century. The U.S. economy is still roughly 11 million jobs short of recovering all 22 million jobs that were lost when the pandemic struck in early spring. The nation averaged more than 50,000 new coronavirus cases per day over the past week. National and battleground public opinion polls suggest that Trump faces stiff headwinds in his bid for a second term. Olivia Troye, a former aide to the task force who has emerged as a harsh Trump critic, says that early in the crisis Trump was “asking the right questions” when doctors spoke to him about their concerns that the country could face a surge of cases in the fall and winter. “That’s why it so completely reckless of him, after having COVID himself, to turn around this week and double down on taking the mask off and parading around like it’s not a necessary thing, calling himself immune,” she said. “He’s doubling down on misinformation that has been coming out of his mouth for the entire tenure of this pandemic.” At his NBC News town hall on Thursday night, Trump was asked whether he should have known better than to announce his nomination of Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court with a Rose Garden ceremony and indoor reception where few guests wore masks and social distancing was nonexistent. He responded by incorrectly citing a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study to falsely suggest that mask wearing doesn’t mitigate the spread of the virus. The study did not say that. Trump also has been guarded in releasing information about his health and wouldn’t say whether he had tested negative on the day of his first debate with Democrat Joe Biden, two days prior to his positive diagnosis, allowing only, “Possibly I did, possibly I didn’t.” After first lady Melania Trump revealed this week that their son, Barron, had tested positive for the illness, Trump used his child’s health scare and recovery to try to make the case that the virus is no big deal for young people. “It happens. People have it, and it goes,” Trump said at a rally in Iowa. “Get the kids back to school.” Earlier in the week, Trump undermined the nation’s top infectious disease expert, Dr. Anthony Fauci, who has at times contradicted the president’s commentary about the virus. “He’s a nice guy so I keep him around, right?” Trump mused at a rally in North Carolina, adding of the studiously non-partisan Fauci: “He’s a Democrat. ... He’s (New York Gov. Andrew) Cuomo’s friend.” While campaigning, Trump and his team often go without masks, a return to the status quo for a president who earlier in the crisis suggested that some people wore masks just to signal their disapproval of him. In one striking moment this week, senior adviser Hope Hicks returned to campaigning with Trump more than two weeks after she tested positive for the virus. Hicks, the president and other aides climbed aboard Maine One wearing no masks. Trump defends his decision to go mask-less by saying that doctors tell him he isn’t shedding virus anymore and he remains “immune” for at least four months. Public health experts say that by refusing to wear masks, Trump and his advisers are missing an opportunity to model behaviour that is essential to keep the rest of America safe. Dan Eberhart, a prominent Republican donor and Trump supporter, said the president’s rhetoric since leaving the hospital isn’t easing jitters among conservative contributors. Several GOP senators in tough races are having difficulty keeping up with an avalanche of Democratic campaign contributions that’s being driven in part by liberal anger over the president’s handling of the pandemic, Eberhart said. “Keeping up the veneer that everything is fine may soothe the president’s ego, but it isn’t motivating donors,” Eberhart added. Trump’s interest in engaging with Fauci and other top medical officials on the coronavirus task force waned long ago. Fauci said in an interview with the Skullduggery podcast this past week that the task force was meeting seven days a week in the spring, but now typically holds one virtual meeting per week and a weekly call to update governors on the state of the virus. Dr. Deborah Birx, the task force co-ordinator, continues to spend most of her time travelling, frequently by car, between hot spot states trying to help governors and public health officials handle their epidemics. Neither Fauci nor Birx has appeared with Trump in public in months. As recently as Friday, Fauci contradicted Trump, saying he was “concerned” about the president frequently describing the country as “rounding the corner” on the virus, a notion at odds with the data. Tensions on the task force continue between Trump’s science adviser, Dr. Scott Atlas, who is not an expert in public health or infectious diseases, and the other professional scientists. The latter view Atlas, who joined the White House in August, as promoting dangerous theories around “herd immunity” and resisting more aggressive calls for Americans to wear face masks. They see Atlas as reinforcing Trump’s worst instincts and lending the veneer of science to rhetoric they see as fundamentally dangerous. ___ Madhani reported from Chicago. Associated Press writers Kevin Freking in Washington and Darlene Superville in Fort Myers, Florida, contributed reporting to this report. Aamer Madhani And Zeke Miller, The Associated Press
NEW YORK — Andrew Orkin was taking a break from his evening jog to sit by Prospect Park Lake when he turned around and was startled to see a tangle of wriggling snakes. “And quite a big pile — fully alive,” said Orkin, a music composer who lives near the Brooklyn park. They turned out to be eels that had escaped from one of two large plastic bags that split open as a man dragged them to the shoreline. After dumping the eels in the lake, the man walked away, explaining to bystanders that “I just want to save lives.” The illegal release late last month became a curiosity on social media, but the dumping of exotic animals in urban parks isn’t new. In cities across the country, nonnative birds, turtles, fish and lizards have settled into, and often disturbed, local ecosystems. New Yorkers free thousands of non-native animals every year, many of them abandoned pets that quickly die. But others can survive, reproduce and end up causing lasting harm. “People like animals and they sometimes think they’re doing a good thing by letting them go,” said Jason Munshi-South, urban ecologist at Fordham University. “Most will die. Some will become a problem, and then there’s no going back.” New York state and city officials say it’s too soon to know how the eels in Prospect Park might affect local species. But based on photos taken by bystanders, officials identified them as swamp eels native to Southeast Asia like those that have been found in at least eight states. Once introduced — often after being purchased at local live fish markets, officials say — the eels eat almost anything including plants, insects, crustaceans, frogs, turtles and other fish. And they could prey upon or compete with the park’s native species for however long they survive, said Katrina Toal, deputy director of the New York City Department of Parks & Recreation’s Wildlife Unit. There are no plans to eradicate the eels. Since they’re nocturnal and spend most of their time burrowed in the sediment of lakes, rivers and marshes, spotting and removing them from the lake could be impossible. “This kind of species is a little tricky. They’re well hidden,” Toal said. “We’ re not going to go out there and try to trap any of them.” Without having witnessed the release, officials from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, which is investigating the incident, could not specify the number of eels released last month. Bystanders described seeing more than 100 of them. DEC officials say they will look for swamp eels during the agency’s next survey in the spring, but don’t expect them to make it through the winter. However, said University of Toronto freshwater ecologist Nicholas Mandrak, “Even if they don’t survive, they could have negative short-term impacts.” If some Prospect Park transplants survive for a few years, climate change could feasibly warm up city waters enough to render them hospitable for swamp eels, Mandrak said. “We shouldn’t come to an immediate conclusion that because they’re found in Asia they couldn’t survive in New York City,” he said. The exotic species previously has shown up in western New York state's Hemlock and Canadice lakes in 2019 and Queens’ Meadow Lake in 2017. Elsewhere, biologists have found Asian swamp eels in waterways in Hawaii, Georgia, New Jersey, Maryland, Michigan, Florida and Pennsylvania. New York City has a long history of people introducing exotic species into its parks. In 1890, Shakespeare enthusiasts released a flock of about 60 European starlings in Central Park that grew into a current population of hundreds of millions nationwide that outcompete native birds, destroy crops and occasionally snarl jet engines. For decades, pet Red-eared slider turtles have been abandoned in city ponds, creating a major nuisance that has crowded out local painted turtles and fueled green algae blooms. Voracious, sharp-toothed Northern snakehead fish — introduced by way of pet stores, live food markets and aquarium hobbyists across the U.S. — have been spotted in New York's Harlem Meer and Flushing Meadows Corona Park. And descendants of escaped or released monk parakeets and Italian wall lizards are scattered across the city’s boroughs. The eels are just the latest episode. “This is an unusual and eye-catching story," Toal said, “but something that happens far more often is people release one unwanted pet." ___ Follow Marion Renault on Twitter: @MarionRenault ___ The Associated Press Health and Science Department receives support from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute’s Department of Science Education. The AP is solely responsible for all content. Marion Renault, The Associated Press
Less than three weeks remain before American voters head to the polls to choose four more years of U.S. President Donald Trump or a new administration headed by former vice-president Joe Biden.And whatever happens Nov. 3, it isn't just the future of America that's at stake.In Alberta, discussion about election implications have largely centred around Biden's promise to cancel the Keystone XL pipeline if Democrats win the U.S. presidential election.But as experts see it, the stakes of a Biden victory — which would be the likely outcome were the election held today, according to CBC's Presidential Poll Tracker — can't be fully judged solely on the fate of the beleaguered pipeline or the future of fracking."I think it's still a question about whether he would actually reverse Keystone," Mount Royal University political scientist Duane Bratt told CBC's West of Centre podcast. "I think it's more complicated, but Albertans are making it much simpler."Despite that uncertainty, recent polling from Léger for 338Canada discussed on West of Centre showed that Alberta was an outlier when polling on Trump's support, suggesting that 32 per cent of Albertans would support the president compared with 68 per cent support for Biden.Support for Biden across Canada was somewhere between 82 and 90 per cent, everywhere except Alberta. * Listen to this week's full episode of West of Centre here:Keystone future 'not a foregone conclusion'Speaking at a news conference on Thursday, Alberta Premier Jason Kenney said he was still hopeful about the future of the $8-billion US project, even should Biden win the election."We are working with many people in the United States who support this project, including many people in the Democratic party," Kenney said.The pipeline, should it move forward, would transport up to 830,000 barrels of crude oil per day from Alberta to Nebraska — approximately one-fifth of all of the oil transported daily between Canada and the United States.Alberta said in March that it had agreed to invest $1.1 billion US as equity in the project, saying at the time that over the next two decades it would take in an estimated $30 billion in tax and royalty revenues.Scotty Greenwood, a specialist in Canada/U.S. relations with Crestview Strategy in Washington, D.C., told West of Centre that there was still "every possibility" Keystone XL goes forward given Biden's reputation as a centrist."He's very thoughtful on questions of energy, infrastructure — just public policy generally," Greenwood said. "So I don't take it as a foregone conclusion that he has it deep in his soul that he needs to eliminate the permit."Greenwood said that the pipeline, the cross-border section of which has already been completed, has faced a number of challenging court rulings as of late and will face a "very delicate dance" after the election."I don't think it's a foregone conclusion," she said. "I know that Biden's transition team, his advisors, are all really thoughtful and are looking at a balanced approach."Trump's executive orders aimed at moving Keystone XR forward may make him seem the preferable ally to the pipeline by some Albertans. But Carlo Dade, director of the trade and investment centre at the Canada West Foundation, said the pipeline presently remains in flux despite efforts of the Trump administration."Trump was not able to move the pipeline despite taking executive action," he told West of Centre.Alberta as a sustainable producerOpportunities may also arise for Alberta in a potential Biden administration, Greenwood said, when it comes to investments in sustainable projects."There's all sorts of innovation around carbon utilization, carbon capture and utilization, not just carbon capture and storage," Greenwood said. "So I think there's going to be a phenomenal conversation, actually, if you've got a U.S. that is open to collaborating again with its neighbours."Greenwood cited various examples in the Canadian private sector which have a fairly large stake in U.S. energy projects, such as Stantec or Capital Power."Capital Power, for example, has this carbon reduction program that they've invested in that is a finalist for the Carbon XPRIZE," she said. "That's exciting, and that is an Alberta story that people here are hearing and listening to."It's not just the old debate of 10 or 15 years ago about oilsands."Earlier this month, the provincial government released its new natural gas strategy, a vision the province hopes would see Alberta hosting large-scale hydrogen production facilities and be a continental leader for recycling plastics, among other initiatives.Such an initiative could be another opportunity for collaboration down the line, Greenwood said, adding that a new administration could see Canada and the U.S. working together on critical minerals and rare earths."There's an opportunity for Alberta in it, in something like that to really help its own economy," Greenwood said."Use the engineering experience it already has, use the infrastructure its got and process critical minerals and rare earths in a way that would be extremely relevant to the United States."Trump and AlbertaLast month, Trump tweeted that he had approved construction of a $22-billion railway between Alberta and Alaska that could move oil, grain, ore, container goods and potentially passengers.If built, ATA Rail said the project would create more than 18,000 jobs for Canadian workers and bring in $60 billion to Canada's GDP through 2040.Such a project, or Trump's efforts towards Keystone, could suggest why the president sees relatively higher support in Alberta compared to the rest of Canada, according to Léger polling. But Dade said that may just be perception. "Even misinformed perception, can drive politics and can, unfortunately, occasionally, drive policy," he said.While some Trump policies may seem to be net positives for Alberta, Greenwood said recent unpredictability of U.S. policy — paired with Trump's adversarial nature — can lead to negative impacts on markets."Removing the spectre of steel and aluminum tariffs, or other punitive tariffs that could come at any moment, which is the way Trump rolls, getting rid of that is a real positive," she said."It's a real positive for business, it's a positive for the government to government relations, and it'll help markets."In Bratt's view, Trump's first term has been "disastrous" for Canadian foreign policy given Canada's strong ties with international organizations."Whether it's the Trans-Pacific Partnership, whether it's the attacks on the World Trade Organization, whether it's pulling out of [the] Paris [climate agreement], whether it's seeing NATO as paying dues to the United States," Bratt said. "These are all hits to fundamental aspects of Canadian foreign policy."And a second term, he'll be even more unbound by that. That's incredibly damaging to Alberta. It's incredibly damaging to the rest of Canada."And though a re-elected Trump may pose difficult challenges to Alberta and Canada, Greenwood said it could also provide an opportunity for Canada to "stitch the global coalition back together.""I'm not predicting his re-election, by the way — it's really close," she said. "But if [Trump] wins, I think Canada could play a very important role in explaining to the world how important it is that we hang together with these global coalitions."
When President Donald Trump told the world that “bad things happen in Philadelphia,” it was, in part, a blunt assessment of his party's struggles in the nation's sixth-most populous city. For decades, Philadelphia has been the cornerstone of Democratic victories in the battleground state — producing Democratic margins so massive that winning statewide has been a longshot for most Republican presidential candidates.
Highlights of this day in history: Arab oil embargo fuels energy crisis; Americans clinch revolutionary victory at Saratoga; Deadly quake hits northern California; Mobster Al Capone convicted of tax evasion; Playwright Arthur Miller born. (Oct. 17)
Iguanas are seemingly everywhere on the Island of Ambergrise Caye in Belize. These little fellows bask in the sun during the day when they are not hunting for food. They will eat insects, small crabs, many types of plant, and even scraps of food that are dropped by the residents and tourists here.