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Welcome to the new BlogsCanada.ca

Hello Canada. My name is Ben and Allan has kindly passed me the reins of BlogsCanada.ca – I have big plans for the website so please stay tuned.  I’m still getting used to the back-end of the website so please bear with me for the next few weeks as I slowly figure everything out.  Over […]

206 - Copy (2) Allan's Perspective

Goodbye!

Dear Readers……., and friends! It has been an interesting time, as well as a time that saw major changes in my personal and working life, but now it is time to let others take on the responsibility of populating these pages with interesting and informative news and gossip. Ben Clarke is the new owner of […]

c97c789ad66845da7da30c6830a5d3cd1c321a26 Allan's Perspective

Saturday Morning Confusion # 477

Dear Readers: There is a lot of confusion about whether Monty Python is really funny …………., or not! What I mean is that some sketches like “The dead Parrot” are among the funniest things I have ever seen, and some other stuff is just plain stupid. BUT. I have to admit that when they ARE funny, […]

images Allan's Perspective

Ontario Place!

Dear Readers: Hey kids, I ran across this article today and since Ontario Place opened when I was still quite young, (teens) and these photo’s and video’s brought back a whole bunch of memories! Any kid who spent time in Toronto during the 1970s, 80s and 90s surely fostered blissful, orange-soaked memories at Children’s Village […]

images Allan's Perspective

This n’ That!

Dear Readers: The Washington Post hit the nail right on the head (Or did they just kick the cat?) when they published this article today! By Michelle Singletary How much is your cat’s life worth? Or your dog’s? Would you take out a credit card specifically to pay for veterinarian care for your cat? Would […]

images020L9QY7 Allan's Perspective

Earth Day 2015!

2015 is shaping up to be a monumental year for the international climate movement, and Earth Day Canada wants to show the world that Canadians are supportive of meaningful climate action. As such, Earth Day Canada is creating a 2015 Earth Flag on which we will collect signatures from people across the country who are […]

msdemst_ec017_0_1429532437 Allan's Perspective

Any Yoda of yours is a Yoda of mine!

Dear Readers: Aficionado’s of online medieval manuscripts—whoever you are—may be intrigued to know about a 14th-century image of  Yoda, wide-spread ears and all, NPR reports. (That’s right kids, Yoda lived for over 900 years, so this was a drawing of him when he was middle-aged!) But is it really him? “I’d love to say that it really […]

Two-talking-parrots Allan's Perspective

What a bird brain!

Firefighters desperately trying to locate voices crying “Help” and “Fire” trapped in an inferno found the desperate pleas came from two parrots. Crews in Boise, Idaho were called to the blaze on Friday night. After arriving on the scene they heard cries of “Help” and “Fire” from inside leading them to believe several people were […]

drama5 Allan's Perspective

Sunday Morning Funnies #7766

The woman’s husband had been slipping in and out of a coma for several months, yet she had stayed by his bedside every single day.  One day, when he came to, he motioned for her to come nearer.  As she sat by him, he whispered, eyes full of tears, “You know what? You have been […]

mealrefundbday Allan's Perspective

Saturday Morning Confusion #3966

Dear Readers: Lots of things confusing me today bunky, including a bit of confusion about how ya can get a free meal just for being old! There are many perks of growing old — seeing your kids have kids, wearing shirts that say “World’s Best Grandma,” calling rowdy youngsters “whippersnappers” and more — and getting discounts […]

Project1 Allan's Perspective

Having kids is hereditary!

Dear Readers: Today we have a couple of stories from opposite ends of the spectrum that show just how crazy things are getting in this world! The Meitiv family, who is once again battling CPS in Maryland over allowing their children to go to the playground unsupervised. (Photo: Facebook) The Maryland parents investigated by Child […]

untitled Allan's Perspective

Wag the Dog!

Dear Readers: You usually forgiving reporter is slowly getting fed-up with individuals and special interest groups who hold society to ransom with whatever stupid bullshit they go on about! The latest case is about a certain Alain Simoneau of Saguenay Quebec who went to a local council meeting seven years ago and decided he didn’t like them saying […]

57RENV14P39900CN-rsz320x320-cp0x80x320x240 Allan's Perspective

Some Type of Necrophilia?

Dear Readers: Your ever faithful servant and reporter tries to keep up with all the latest news so that we can supply you with the latest poop on what’s going on in your world ………., and this one takes the cake! “Hey, wanna go see the body?” may seem like an odd thing to hear at […]

carina-messina Allan's Perspective

The French are at it again!

Dear Readers: Your long suffering reporter fervently believes in that old axiom, “The French are the best second raters in the world” and this article does nothing to dispel that belief! A Montreal man is criticizing Quebec language laws after a clerk at a local Toys “R” Us told him he was wasn’t allowed to purchase […]

GRENDI9G9BTGB7NC-rsz320x240-cp0x40x320x200 Allan's Perspective

Eat cheese, get laid!

O.K. folks, read the following article, and then remember ……., ya heard it here first! A survey by dating social network site Skout, cheese heads get more action. Skout surveyed a total of 4,600 people. Grilled cheese yields more sex, better people! Thirty-two percent of grilled cheese lovers reported having sex at least six times […]

17865-Clipart-Illustration-Of-A-Nude-Middle-Aged-Cacuasian-Woman-With-Black-Curly-Hair-Preparing-To-Take-A-Shower Allan's Perspective

Sex?

The Ontario government tried to introduce a new sex education course to public school kids a few month ago and it included such things as discussions about masturbation, trans-gender issues, same sex couples and much more. Now I’m bringing this up for a couple of reasons kids. First of all, we’re not sure if some […]

april01 Allan's Perspective

Sunday Morning Funnies # 32

A man turns to his wife in bed and whispers “Did you know it’s National Orgasm Day?” “Oh, what a pity,” she smiled, “Right in the middle of National Headache Week !!” ———————————— SENIOR TRYING TO SET PASSWORD WINDOWS: Please enter your new password: USER: cabbage WINDOWS: Sorry, the password must be more than 8 […]

imagesCAVCNRT6 Allan's Perspective

Saturday Morning Confusion # 49

Seems I don’t know who to believe anymore kids! The CBC is on a campaign to flog what they call the missing and/or murdered native women across Canada and it makes the news every night. You would think there is a vat network of guys like Robert Pickton who are abducting and killing girls left right […]

untitledvn v Allan's Perspective

AN AIRLINE PILOT SPEAKS HIS MIND!

  No name calling, no hatred, no political agenda. CANADIAN COMMENT  APPEARS AT THE END OF THE ARTICLE AND IS MEANINGFUL. THERE IS ALSO SOME RECENTLY ADDED BRITISH COMMENT.   This pilot hit the nail right on the head in his open letter.   A newspaper stated that some Muslim doctor is saying we are profiling […]

death-row-inmate-eat-kitten Allan's Perspective

Kitten a la carte!

Well boys and girls, here is a woman who would make Alf the Alien proud! Serial husband killer and North Carolina death row inmate, Blanche Taylor Moore, requested this weekend that her last meal be a kitten — a live kitten The prison administration is required to accept all last meal demands of any kind. Thus, they will obtain […]


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The 8th Annual Canadian Book Challenge – June Roundup (Sticky Post— Scroll down for most recent post)

Posted  June 30, 2015  by  John Mutford

How to add your link:
1. Click on the icon above
2. Add a link to your review. (Please link to your specific review, not an entire webpage.)
3. Add your name and in parentheses the title of the book, such as John Mutford (Anne of Avonlea)
4. In the comment section below, tell me your grand total so far. (ex. “This brings me up to 1/13″)

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Liberals would bolster National Energy Board reviews

Posted  June 29, 2015  by  Anonymous

Liberals would bolster NEB reviews

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Ian Mulgrew: City’s pot bylaw ignores major concerns

Posted  June 29, 2015  by  Vancouver Sun - News

Vancouver City Council and the police department have clouded the national debate on cannabis with their approach to pot and are pumping money into the pockets of organized crime.

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Surrey Six killer Matthew Johnston posts ad on prison dating service

Posted  June 29, 2015  by  Vancouver Sun - News

Surrey Six killer Matthew Johnston is looking for love while serving his life sentence. The former B.C. man has posted an ad on the prison dating service Canadian Inmates Connect, seeking female companionship.

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Medium ditches passwords for single-use email links

Posted  June 29, 2015  by  Anonymous

Passwords are, by many accounts, quickly going the way of the dodo. And while many sites now allow users to log in via social media, they’re not always a viable option. That’s why (as an alternative to logging in via Facebook or Twitter) blog-publish…

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B.C. mine in the works since 1950s gets building permit for underground mine

Posted  June 29, 2015  by  The Province - News

VICTORIA – British Columbia has approved a construction permit for a proposed $50-million silver, lead and zinc mine just south of the Yukon border after the project’s economic and environmental plans helped win support from an area First Nation.

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Politics and its Discontents: Robert Reich’s Warning About the Trans Pacific Partnership

Posted  June 29, 2015  by  Lorne

Although directed to an American audience, these warnings are equally applicable to Canada:

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The Trans Pacific Partnership is a zombie that refuses to die no matter how many stakes are driven through its heart. Today the Senate voted 60 to 37 in favor of “fast track” negotiating authority, and final passage of fast track is expected tomorrow – laying the groundwork for an up-or-down (Read more…)

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Trudeau says Liberal government would bolster National Energy Board reviews

Posted  June 29, 2015  by  The Province - News

VANCOUVER – Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau says restoring a “gutted” environmental review process would be part of his vision for strengthening Canada’s economy.

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Northern B.C. port blames abandoned pipe for fuel leak into ocean

Posted  June 29, 2015  by  The Province - News

PRINCE RUPERT, B.C. – The Prince Rupert Port Authority says workers are trying to stop an abandoned pipe from slowly leaking fuel into the ocean in northwestern B.C.

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Greece prepares for economic darkness

Posted  June 29, 2015  by  Anonymous

Unless money falls from the sky or a last-minute agreement is struck between Greece and its creditors, the country will most certainly miss its €1.6-billion payment ($2.2 billion Cdn.) to the International Monetary Fund on Tuesday.

Skipping a debt repayment of this size to one of Greece’s three creditors — the IMF, European Commission and European Central Bank — pushes the country closer to a return to the drachma and an abandoning of the euro.

Greece has entered a period of financial and political chaos.

Banks have shut for the next six days to prevent a further loss of cash from accounts. Greeks have access to ATMs but are restricted to withdrawing only €60 ($84) a day. Athens grocery stores and gas stations are also experiencing long lines as stoic Greeks prepare for the worse.

The defiant anti-austerity Syriza government of Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras pulled back its negotiators from securing a last-minute bailout deal late Friday in Brussels. Tsipras insists the deal’s terms be put to Greeks on Sunday in a national referendum.

“The Greek people have a right to decide on their future,” Tsipras said Monday, urging Greeks to reject the deal “with all our strength.”

He added on Twitter as tens of thousands of Athenians took to the streets to show their support of Greece: “Our people have remained calm in the face of blackmail.”

European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, in a passionate speech aimed directly at the Greek people, said he felt “betrayed” by what has happened. For the last five months, the EU gave Greece a lifeline by extending the $340-billion bailout while talks continued to find an acceptable way forward.

Juncker implored Greeks not to commit suicide because they are afraid of dying.

“What is at stake here is the essential spirit of European shared solidarity and responsibility. Other European countries went through very difficult times — Ireland, Portugal, Spain, Cyprus and Latvia — to name only these few countries,” Juncker said in Brussels.

“All governments took very difficult decisions; some of them paid a very high political price for their solidarity and their financial support to help the most vulnerable countries.”

Juncker suggested Greeks were not being told the truth regarding negotiations. Contrary to what they have been told, he said, neither wage nor pension cuts were on the table.

With the abandoning of negotiations and the expiry of the current bailout package on Tuesday, it is unknown what exactly a Yes or No vote would mean.

Nick Kounis, head of macro and financial markets research at the Dutch bank ABN AMRO, said one of the many strange things about this referendum is that, in theory, the deal being worked on last week is off the table.

“The most important thing is if the Greek people support the idea of staying in the euro and going forward with that deal. If they do, I think the practical issues of under which plan — an extension or a new one — can be resolved. But what can’t be resolved is if they vote no,” Kounis said.

Tsipras is actively campaigning for a No vote — he believes the shackling terms of the bailout agreement will plunge his people further into poverty.

European leaders say a No vote is a vote for Greece to leave the euro.

A Yes vote could open the door to further negotiations, suggested German Chancellor Angela Merkel. Also, creditors could release emergency liquidity to let the banks reopen, along with controls.

But a Yes vote could also lead to Tsipras and the Syriza government falling. If Greeks indicate, through a positive vote, that they are willing to accept austerity measures imposed on them, then that vote could be interpreted as a lack of confidence in Syriza’s campaign platform.

Regardless, Greece is in a no-win situation.

Without the possibility of a secure cash flow, Greece is expected to miss a €3.5-billion ($4.8-billion) payment to the European Central Bank on July 20.

European leaders moved Monday to mitigate the damage to their own economies.

George Osborne, the British chancellor of the exchequer, said his country’s attitude to the developing Greek crisis is clear: they hope for the best but are preparing for the worst. He warned that a Greek exit, or “Grexit,” from the euro should not be taken lightly.

“This Greek crisis has, in one form or another, been with us for five years. It has been one of the biggest external economic risks to the British economy,” Osborne said, noting Britain did not join the euro.

“And the situation today shows that these risks remain.”

European countries go hard-line on Greece

Greece isn’t the only European country to suffer painful austerity policies in order to straighten out its finances.

Does austerity work? That is questionable — government leaders often say yes but those left in poverty disagree. One thing is for certain: countries which have subscribed to the European Union’s painful medicine of tax hikes and job cuts are doing far better than Greece.

Latvia: This Baltic nation is understandably a bit angry with Greece. Latvia, population 2.1 million, suffered through severe economic cuts — one-third of government workers were laid off — after the economy tanked in 2008, largely due to a bank failure. Latvia received a €7-billion loan ($9.75 billon Cdn) from the International Monetary Fund and a healthier Latvia joined the single currency euro on Jan. 1, 2015.

Cyprus: The economy of Cyprus fell apart in 2013 after, ironically, an investment in Greek bonds. Cyprus’s banks shut. Capital controls were imposed; bank accounts with big deposits (many held by Russian oligarchs) were shaved and in the end, a €13-billion ($18-billion) bailout deal was struck to keep the island nation solvent.

Portugal: Prime Minister Pedro Passos Coelho has little sympathy for Greece’s attempts to change the terms of its debt repayments. Portugal suffered through austerity and exited a €78-billion ($108.6-billion) bailout in 2014. Coelho has even labelled Greece’s renegotiation wishes a fairytale.

Ireland: Irish Taoiseach Enda Kenny does not support a Greek debt writeoff. The Irish received a €67.5-billion ($93.6-billion) bailout from the International Monetary Fund and the EU in 2010. Once dubbed the Celtic Tiger, its economy has improved, but a new report says 750,000 Irish live in poverty.

Spain: After Spain’s real estate bubble bust, it secured a €100-billion ($139 billion) deal to bail out its banks, but only used half the money. They exited their bailout program in 2014 but unemployment remains consistently high; hovering at 23 per cent. The economy still struggles and the Spanish people still demonstrate against harsh austerity policies.

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Yelp study claims that Google ‘knowingly’ worsens search results

Posted  June 29, 2015  by  Jon Fingas

Yelp really, really isn’t a fan of Google’s search rankings, and it’s making sure that you know it. The location-based service has partnered with net neutrality pioneer Tim Wu on a study alleging that Google is “knowingly degrading” search results by…

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Calgary firefighters mourning death of one of their own who drowned in B.C. lake

Posted  June 29, 2015  by  Vancouver Sun - News

Calgary’s firefighting community is “devastated” after a 32-year-old Calgary firefighter drowned in B.C. early Sunday morning when the canoe he was fishing in capsized.

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Coquitlam teen took ‘sadistic delight’ in tormenting people online, court hears

Posted  June 29, 2015  by  The Province - News

A Coquitlam teen who “swatted” and harassed people across the U.S. and Canada last year took “sadistic delight” in his crimes and is a high risk to reoffend, according to psychiatric reports. The 17-year-old, who cannot be identified under the Youth Criminal Justice Act, has pleaded guilty to 23 charges, including extortion, public mischief and criminal harassment. He was initially facing more than 40 charges.

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Smyth: TransLink kept news under wraps until plebiscite voting was over

Posted  June 29, 2015  by  The Province - News

Elections B.C. had hoped to release the result of the Metro Vancouver transit-tax plebiscite by the end of June, but they were still counting votes on Monday morning. Officials have promised to give 48 hours’ notice before announcing the winner. And since Canada Day falls on Wednesday, it appears the earliest the result will come is this Thursday, Friday or even next week.

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Couple walks out of B.C. backcountry just as families were saying ‘their last goodbyes’

Posted  June 29, 2015  by  The Province - News

They were dehydrated, bug-bitten and bruised. But otherwise, Lynne Carmody and Rick Moynan were in surprisingly good shape for people everyone assumed were dead

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The kneejerkers

Posted  June 29, 2015  by  Garth Turner

Planning a Greek holiday later this year? Cool. Book the flight now. But not the hotel or the car. Just show up with cash. Haggle your way to epic low prices. Pick up a villa while you’re there. And get used to the idea that all your gain is some Greek’s pain. So stock markets […]

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Justin Trudeau unveils Liberals’ environmental platform

Posted  June 29, 2015  by  Anonymous

VANCOUVER — Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau has unveiled his party’s environmental platform, saying it would be vital to a strong Canadian economy though some groups said his policies don’t go far enough.

Trudeau said phasing out fossil fuel subsidies and making investments in clean technologies would be among the Liberals’ top strategies if he unseats Prime Minister Stephen Harper in October.

“The only way to build a strong economy is to protect the environment,” he said Monday. “The old saw of picking one or the other, which Mr. Harper seems to believe, no longer works,” he told reporters while standing before a backdrop of the ocean and massive ships at Jericho Beach.

He said formalizing a moratorium on tanker traffic in northern British Columbia would protect marine coastal areas and provide benefits for international trade.

Trudeau said he would work with the provinces to map out a plan to reduce Canada’s collective carbon footprint within 90 days of taking office.

He said he would also invite premiers across the country to join him at the UN Climate Change Conference in Paris at the end of this year and put “teeth” back into the federal environmental review process.

He said increasing consultation on projects such as the proposed Northern Gateway pipeline, which would increase tanker traffic in Vancouver’s harbour, would be part of the revamped measures.

Groups including ForestEthics Advocacy called some of Trudeau’s proposals a “good first step,” but argued the environmental review process needs to be beefed up even further.

The group lauded a tanker ban as the “final nail in the coffin” for Enbridge’s Northern Gateway pipeline, which would see Alberta crude flow westward to Kitimat, B.C.

“The Liberal party platform should be clear on whether their review of upstream greenhouse emissions would include the proposed Kinder Morgan and Energy East pipelines,” said Karen Mahon, director for ForestEthics.

Greenpeace Canada called the announcement a disappointment that was “too weak, vague.”

But the group joined the Pembina Institute in welcoming commitments to including upstream carbon emissions in amendments to the environmental review process. It also echoed ForestEthics’ approval for formalizing the moratorium on crude oil tanker traffic on B.C.’s north coast.

Trudeau said his government would reopen the Kitsilano Coast Guard station next to English Bay, a promise that NDP Leader Tom Mulcair also made in April after a vessel dumped 2,700 litres of bunker fuel into the bay.

The Conservative party criticized Trudeau’s platform, saying he “does not understand” the implications of his policies.

Natural Resources Minister Greg Rickford and Environment Minister Leona Aglukkaq said the carbon pricing scheme will “increase the costs of everything including gas, groceries, electricity.”

The New Democrats said the announcement contained “few details” but borrowed plenty of policies from its own platform.

Trudeau also said the Liberals would increase the amount of protected marine and coastal areas to five per cent by 2017, and 10 per cent by 2020.

He also promised that his government would cancel admission fees at national parks in 2017 to commemorate Canada’s 150th anniversary.

What the other parties are promising

Conservatives:

  • Put Canada on a low-carbon footing by 2050, with an eventual halt in the use of fossil fuels by the end of the century.
  • Potentially buy international credits to meet greenhouse gas emissions goal.
  • $200 million over two years for Environmental projects such as cleaning up federal contaminated sites and protecting species at risk.
  • NDP:

  • Cap-and-trade emissions reduction plan that puts a price on carbon.
  • Cut subsidies to the fossil-fuel industry and reinvest the money in environmentally sustainable initiatives.
  • Put the right to a clean environment into law.
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    Canucks not part of free agent frenzy

    Posted  June 29, 2015  by  Vancouver Sun - News

    When the National Hockey League’s biggest shopping day of the year arrives on Wednesday, Jim Benning will likely be scouring the aisles of Dollarama, not Sak’s Fifth Avenue.

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    Lots to do in Vancouver and area on Canada Day

    Posted  June 29, 2015  by  The Province - News

    It may be hard to turn Canada Day into a long weekend this year, but no matter, there’s lots of festivities — fun, food, floats, fish, freebies, families and fireworks — in town July 1 to celebrate our 148th birthday. Here’s a sampling:

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    Trudeau’s green shift for votes

    Posted  June 29, 2015  by  Anonymous

    Justin Trudeau stood on a park overlooking Vancouver’s English Bay Monday to make the case that when it comes to battling climate change the Liberal Party he leads today will not do what the Liberal Party under Jean Chretien did which was precisely nothing.

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    Samsung is launching ‘several’ more Tizen smartphones this year

    Posted  June 29, 2015  by  Jon Fingas

    It’s tempting to think of Tizen as an also-ran in the smartphone world next to powerhouses like Android and iOS, but that’s not entirely true when Samsung has sold 1 million Z1 phones in India since January. In fact, there are now signs that the Kore…

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    Microplastic particles move up marine food chain on B.C. coast: research

    Posted  June 29, 2015  by  Vancouver Sun - News

    Plastic fibres and particles in West Coast waters are being consumed and passed up the food chain by tiny marine creatures that apparently mistake them for food, according to a new study from the Vancouver Aquarium Marine Science Centre. Researcher Pet…

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    Let’s work to stop the crackdown on domain privacy

    Posted  June 29, 2015  by  David Christopher

    Have you ever wondered just how many domain names there are out there? Turns out, there are a lot! According to Verisign’s Domain Industry Brief, there were a whopping 288 million domain names registered by the end of 2014, with 16.9 million new domains registered in 2014 alone.

    read more

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    OpenMedia.ca: Let’s work to stop the crackdown on domain privacy

    Posted  June 29, 2015  by  David Christopher

    Have you ever wondered just how many domain names there are out there? Turns out, there are a lot! According to Verisign’s Domain Industry Brief, there were a whopping 288 million domain names registered by the end of 2014, with 16.9 million new domains registered in 2014 alone.

    read more

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    Lawrence Park residents fight potential removal of 349 trees

    Posted  June 29, 2015  by  Anonymous

    Lawrence Park might be known as the “garden suburb,” but that’s not stopping the city from considering ripping down 349 of the neighbourhood’s trees — some more than 50 years old.

    The plan that tree removal authorities are mulling over isn’t without cause. It’s part of a stormwater management project that would involve replacing roads and sewers to mitigate the flooding that plagues Lawrence and Bayview Aves. — notably during the 2013 flood and ice storm.

    It’s not quite a done deal yet. City staff say assessments continue and when a plan is chosen, they’ll do their best to keep from removing trees that aren’t obstructing the project.

    But Lawrence Park residents aren’t waiting for the axe to fall. Even the thought of having their precious trees hacked at has them up in arms, so they are plastering lawns with “Save Our Trees” signs and tying yellow ribbons around the 349 trees the city figures might have to come down to make way for sidewalks and better sewer infrastructure.

    Anne Riley’s children played basketball for many summers on their Lewes Cres. driveway, where one of those trees provided much-needed shade. The kids have moved out, but the magnificent tree still stands. Riley hopes to keep it to preserve the “rural, country feel” that attracted the family to the corner lot. “If you lose the greenery, then it looks like a city road,” she says. “You lose the character of the neighbourhood.”

    Rick Hutcheon and Kim Stewart, the couple who spearheaded the intense sign and tape bombing campaign, agree that removing trees threatens the area’s rustic charm.

    They have lived here for more than 20 years, and the foliage was a big part of why they chose the neighbourhood, Hutcheon said.

    “I am certainly not against sidewalks if they are necessary, and I am certainly not against sewers,” Hutcheon said. “All we want is for the canopy to be maintained.”

    Councillor Jaye Robinson (open Jaye Robinson’s policard), whom Hutcheon and Stewart targeted in their signs by encouraging people to call her with their complaints, agreed.

    A longtime “tree hugger,” Robinson said she was shocked to see the signs directed at her as she drove along Lawrence Ave. East one weekend. “Usually, I am the one who is fighting for the trees,” she said. “I drive developers crazy because I want them to move driveways to save trees.”

    She is pushing the city to follow a similar model to the nearby Hogg’s Hollow neighbourhood, where crews hand-dug around trees and streets were narrowed to reduce the number cut down.

    She would also like to see the city research innovative and creative reconstruction techniques to protect their root structures. But she says, “staff won’t commit to anything.”

    “They won’t say there won’t be one tree that won’t come down because it is the actual construction of the storm and sewer system that will have a big impact on the number of trees affected,” Hutcheon said, noting the city has yet to choose a plan. “With some work, I think we can find a solution.”

    Michael D’Andrea, the city’s executive director of engineering and construction services, is also hopeful the city will find a way to spare more trees by the time a final report is presented in fall.

    “We put forward all the options and came up with 349 trees, but we are looking to reduce that number,” he said. “At this time, we know there is going to be an impact on trees, but we just won’t know how many until a couple of years from now.”

    At the Brasseur home, at least, if the chainsaws come out, there will be a vigorous defence. Jeremy Brasseur grew up on Mildenhall Rd., watching small trees grow into goliaths. When he and his wife Andreana moved their family to nearby St. Leonards Ave., they were thrilled to take possession of an enormous silver maple 94 centimetres in diameter.

    “I and my family,” Jeremy vowed, “will chain ourselves to this beautiful tree when the city comes to cut it down.”

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    Environment

    The Canadian Progressive: Pope Francis offers hopeful perspective on global crises, says David Suzuki

    Posted  June 29, 2015  by  Anonymous

    Pope Francis’ recent encyclical on climate change contains a “scientifically and morally valid call for radical change”, says environmentalist David Suzuki.

    The post Pope Francis offers hopeful perspective on global crises, says David Suzuki appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

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    New public-Catholic school to be built at City Place

    Posted  June 29, 2015  by  Marco Chown Oved - Staff Reporter

    They say it takes a village to raise a child, yet people living in the forest of condo towers at City Place have found their vertical village lacks one thing: a school.

    Last week, local parents who are forced to put their school-age kids on buses every day heard about a plan to remedy the situation, with the downtown core’s first split public/Catholic school. The schools will be part of an innovative complex that integrates them with a community centre and daycare, to form a hub that planners hope will become the centre of life for all residents, young and old alike.

    Many of the thousands of units in the City Place towers are so small they weren’t intended for families. But the city’s skyrocketing real estate prices have kept many who moved in years ago from being able to afford to move out as their families grew. The 500-square-foot family is now a reality, and the city must find a way to provide more community spaces to accommodate parents and kids.

    “This community is space-challenged,” said Peter Duckworth, a principal at ZAS architects, who helped design big, multi-use spaces for people to meet, hang out, check their email and hold meetings. “It’s all that stuff that would have happened in a suburban rec room.”

    Lacking backyards, the 20,000 residents of City Place have flocked to Canoe Landing Park, with its signature oversized red canoe, to walk their dogs, work out and host picnics. When it opens in September 2019, the adjacent community hub, tentatively called “Block 31” will form the heart of the new neighbourhood, where people can hang out informally, take classes or organize events.

    “It’s the kind of thing they’ve been doing in London, New York and Chicago forever,” said Duckworth. “You’re sharing space, but you’re also sharing programming opportunities and bringing together community.”

    Local city councillor Joe Cressy (open Joe Cressy’s policard) held two community meetings to get input on the project and couldn’t believe how many young families showed up.

    “There are already families there and there are people who want to start families, so it’s incumbent upon us to provide the necessary amenities,” he said. “We need to make sure we’re building neighbourhoods and not just adding density.”

    Both schools will have their own gymnasium and classrooms, but will share outdoor recreation space and have access to the dance studio, practice kitchen and indoor playground housed in the community centre. There will be underground parking and a green roof, a massive lobby with Wi-Fi, and space that can be booked for community events as small as birthday parties.

    While some of the towers have been up for the better part of a decade, ground has yet to be broken on the schools because the three funders — the Catholic board, the public board and the city — all waited until they had collected enough money from developers to get the project funded, said Paul Stevens, another principal at ZAS. But now that the project has a green light, each funder will benefit from being part of the bigger complex.

    “That’s what people want to see: public agencies working together to get the most out of their investments,” Stevens said.

    While the budget is still dependent on a few more towers yet to be built, the complex will probably cost about $55 million to build, he said.

    Each school will be big in its own right, with an estimated 550 students, and the daycare will host 52 children, bringing the daytime population to more than 1,100 kids — all of them close enough to home to head upstairs for lunch.

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    Right must drop anti-gay talk

    Posted  June 29, 2015  by  Anonymous

    Last Friday was a troublesome day for economic conservatives. It was the day the Supreme Court of the United States essentially made gay marriage legal.

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    Greenhouse gas emissions from B.C. forests on dramatic rise

    Posted  June 29, 2015  by  Vancouver Sun - News

    B.C.’s forests experienced heavy carbon losses between 2003-2012, a dramatic change from the previous decade whey they were absorbing carbon, an analysis by the Sierra Club of B.C. shows. The province’s forests emitted an estimated 256 million tonnes of carbon dioxide to the atmosphere between 2003 and 2012. In the previous 10-year period, they absorbed 441 million tonnes from the atmosphere, according to a report released this month by the environmental group.

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    Parchment in the Fire: Will the Greek Referendum Bring the Troika Back to the Bargaining Table? (2/2)

    Posted  June 29, 2015  by  geofftkennedy

    Filed under: Austerity Tagged: Eurozone Crisis, Greece, Syriza

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    Parchment in the Fire: Will the Greek Referendum Bring the Troika Back to the Bargaining Table? (1/2)

    Posted  June 29, 2015  by  geofftkennedy

    Filed under: Austerity Tagged: Austerity, Eurozone Crisis, Greece, Syriza

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    What’s on your HDTV: Women’s World Cup, ‘Zoo’, ‘Vanilla Sky’ Blu-ray

    Posted  June 29, 2015  by  Richard Lawler

    This week the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup will conclude, and the USWNT is taking on Germany Tuesday night. Beyond that, Cameron Crowe fans (still sticking around since the release of Aloha) can finally see Vanilla Sky on Blu-ray complete with an exte…

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    Minister Nicholson Saddened by Death of Egyptian Prosecutor General

    Posted  June 29, 2015  by  Canada News Centre - National News

    “Canada condemns today’s terrorist attack in Cairo, Egypt, and the apparent targeting of Prosecutor General Hisham Barakat, who died from injuries sustained in the attack. On behalf of Canada, I extend my sympathies to the family and friends of the Pro…

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    Doctors’ group proposes assisted death protocols in absence of rules from government

    Posted  June 29, 2015  by  Vancouver Sun - News

    The proposed scheme calls for several cooling off periods, and two doctors would have to agree the person is competent, acting voluntarily and has made an informed decision

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    New York State Ban On Fracking Made Official

    Posted  June 29, 2015  by  Anonymous

    After years of exhaustive research and examination of the science and facts, prohibiting high-volume hydraulic fracturing is the only reasonable alternative.”

    Those were the words many activists in New York never expected to hear from Joe Martens, head of the state’s Department of Environmental Conservation, but they were included in a statement released today as New York made the state’s ban on fracking official.

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    In their 80s, the Sewells are new Canadians

    Posted  June 29, 2015  by  The Province - News

    Ellie and Michael Sewell are both more than 80 years old, so when they become Canadian citizens Wednesday atop Grouse Mountain, high above their North Vancouver home, they are likely to become some of the oldest new Canadians. “He’s my toy boy,” jokes the 88-year-old Ellie of husband Michael, who is just 83.

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    Accidental Deliberations: On delay tactics

    Posted  June 29, 2015  by  Greg Fingas

    Following up on this post, let’s look in a bit more detail as to how the Cons might try to make excuses for a delay in this fall’s expected federal election – and why they might be happy to use the more questionable means to do so.

    As noted in the previous post, the fixed election date set in October was set by an act of Parliament, and could easily be changed through the same process given the Cons’ well-whipped majorities in both chambers. So why then might Stephen Harper prefer to ignore or flout legislation rather than changing (Read more…)

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    Facing Autism in New Brunswick: Conor After Another Seizure

    Posted  June 29, 2015  by  H L Doherty

    Conor has been on  a good run for the previous 7-10 days and today was pretty much the same until 6:15 this evening when we heard a loud thump uupstairs.  His mom ran upstairs and screamed for help when she saw him convulsing on the floor with thick fluids oozing out of his mouth.  We had to keep him on his side with his head away from any corners or hard objects.   This was Conor’s 4th grand mal seizure since Christmas. Conor’s convulsions did not appear to last too long compared to some previous seizures ..  approximately 2 minutes. (Read more…)

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    WATCH: Teen arrested after beating a classmate holding infant

    Posted  June 29, 2015  by  Anonymous

    Teen arrested after beating a classmate

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    Loblaw’s Superstore rolls out a diverse approach

    Posted  June 29, 2015  by  Anonymous

    When it comes to discount grocery stores, saving money often means a warehouse setting, indifferent lighting and a lackluster fresh-food offering.

    Loblaw Companies Ltd. is challenging that idea with a newly renovated pilot store in Mississauga re-opening on Friday, bringing an elevated shopping experience to a Real Canadian Superstore.

    “Retail is as much about evolution as anything. If you stay in any one place for too long, you’ll be overtaken,” said Andrew Iacobucci, president, discount division, Loblaw Cos. Ltd.

    “We felt it was time to take the business up to another level.”

    The new motto is fresh, value and global flavours.

    Much of the inspiration for the renovation came from the Asian T&T grocery chain Loblaw purchased in 2009 and from Arz Fine Food, a Middle Eastern bakery and grocery retailer purchased by Loblaw last year.

    The Real Canadian Superstore at 3050 Argentia Rd. in Mississauga, renovated over six months, adds many of the labels and foods carried by T&T and Arz, as well as some of the merchandising practices.

    The new superstore has a roasted nut and dried fruit counter; a wider variety of ingredients used in Middle Eastern and Asian cuisine; an entire aisle of rice in large-format sizes; and it carries Parle-G, a popular cookie manufactured in India that is largely unavailable in regular grocery stores.

    The move is meant to serve the area’s increasingly diverse population, and the growing number of people who are becoming more adventurous when it comes to food.

    Whether or not the pilot is rolled out into other superstores will depend on how the store performs over the next year or so, said Chris Fisher, vice-president on the project.

    “It is a pilot for us. We’re going to learn. You’ll know when you see them in other stores, what is working,” said Fisher.

    Veggies on a stage

    Fresh is the star of the newly renovated superstore, beginning with fragrant cilantro inside the main doors leading into an abundantly stocked produce section lit up like a stage, featuring bitter melon, durian and fresh curry leaves, along with more routine fare. More than 700 items have been added to the fresh selection, which includes fruit, vegetables, seafood, meat, baked goods, take-out meals and sushi. According to research from Nielsen, 63 per cent of Canadians are eating more fruits and vegetables in an attempt to minimize future health problems.

    Seafood & fish

    To the left of the main doors are 28 feet of fish and seafood on ice. Beside that, 18 clear tanks are filled with live sea food and fish, including Barramundi, jumbo lobster, Dungeness crab, mussels and clams. The tanks are digitally filtered and temperature controlled. Seafood is a popular ingredient in Asian cuisine, and the new store configuration adds 25 per cent more space to the category. The first day after the seafood section re-opened the store did a week’s worth of sales, said Iacobucci.

    Pita bakery

    Enclosed in glass, a 1,200-square-foot machine will bake pitas onsite daily, selling for $1 for a bag of six. Shoppers will be able to watch as the pitas wind through the production process before being bagged and sold.

    Teppenyaki grill

    Never shop on an empty stomach, personal finance advisors say. Now customers won’t have to. They can buy T&T sushi to eat in-store or at home, or watch as a chef puts together a hot meal at the Teppenyaki grill. They can pick veggies, a starch (noodles or rice), a protein (beef, chicken or shrimp), and then the chef will chop it all up and cook it on the spot. Customers who want to keep shopping will be given a buzzer to alert them when their bowl, priced starting at about $6.50, is ready.

    Cosmetics

    At a second store entrance, shoppers will find an entire section of Asian skin and hair care products, including hennas and the popular My Beauty Diary face masks. “These are very important customers to us. We are very excited about this area of the store,” said Fisher.

    The full shop

    The Real Canadian Superstore is a food-led one-stop shop; a place where customers can buy groceries but also buy wine, drop off dry-cleaning, fill a pharmacy prescriptions, see a doctor, buy a toy, or squeeze in a work out at the gym. The superstore at Argentia Rd. also offers an expanded Joe Fresh section and a baby and infant section that sells diapers, strollers and car seats and a variety of home wares and some electronic goods.

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