Recent Entries in Can-con

A backbench politician from Nova Scotia wants to give her province a long weekend in February, joining the chorus of Canadians clamouring for a midwinter break.

Albertans already enjoy such a holiday, and have done so since 1989. The third Monday in February is Family Day in that province, giving many people a statutory holiday "to recognize the values held by the pioneers who built Alberta and the values of home and family."

CBC News: Push on for February long weekend

Two executives meet at a function and exchange business cards. This makes the information public and allows it to be exchanged freely without worrying about contravening any privacy laws. Right?

Not so, says the Privacy Commissioner of Canada, who has ruled that a business e-mail address is personal information protected under the federal privacy legislation in a landmark decision involving spam last December.

"The case surrounded whether business e-mail is personal information and the commissioner found that it did not fall within the exemption �€“ many people call it the business card exemption," said Ottawa lawyer Dan Palayew, who specializes in labour, employment and privacy law at Ogilvy Renault.

Ottawa Business Journal - Home Page

[Z] - I sadly wonder about people who fight *against* the Charter of Rights and Freedoms :

Canada's largest movie-theatre chain will no longer run ads supporting same-sex marriage after opposing groups boycotted its theatres.

Famous Players will no longer run any "issue-driven advertising" in its 79 theatres, The Globe and Mail reported, after staff received death threats and movements against same-sex unions boycotted theatres for running ads in support of same-sex marriage.

The two pre-film 15-second ads that were sponsored by Canadians for Equal Marriage, will not be running as of this weekend, said Nuria Bronfman, the Toronto-based vice-president of corporate affairs for Famous Players. | Famous Players cuts same-sex ads after threats

Security at two of Canada's most important electricity generating plants is so lax that terrorists would have no trouble at all getting in, according to a television report.

A team from the French-language RDI channel wandered around the Manic-5 and Robert Bourrassa hyrdo-electric plants in the remote James Bay area of French-speaking Quebec without seeing a single security guard.

The plants, linked to a series of giant dams, supply power to Quebec and the north-eastern United States.

In a special report, which was aired on Tuesday night, the RDI team drove in an unmarked van to the center of the Robert Bourassa generating station. They then passed through an unlocked door and made their way to the control panels without once being challenged.

Reuters | Latest Financial News / Full News Coverage

Deputy Prime Minister Anne McLellan shot back at critics of the government's anti-terrorism legislation yesterday, saying the tough measures are popular and any evidence of racial profiling by officials is considered a firing offence.

Three years after Ottawa quickly passed anti-terrorism legislation in response to the Sept. 11 attacks, the law faces a mandatory parliamentary review. But Ms. McLellan told senators tasked with the assignment that the government managed to get it right the first time and no major changes are needed.

The Globe and Mail: Anti-terrorism law effective as it is, McLellan insists

  Gay MP says foe 'idiotic'

A Conservative MP has been accused of getting personal over the same-sex marriage debate after referring to a gay NDP MP's personal life. The exchange between Tory MP Jason Kenney and openly gay NDP MP Libby Davies comes as MPs get ready to begin debate in the Commons on the controversial issue.

"I don't think it should be personal at all. I approach this issue with enormous respect for both sides. The debate should be conducted with great tolerance," Kenney said yesterday.

CANOE -- CNEWS - Canada: Gay MP says foe 'idiotic'

Some members of Parliament say they're getting pressure from their constituents, and from Americans, over the same-sex marriage legislation, currently before Parliament.

"They're phoning, they're sending e-mails and they're faxing," said Liberal MP Beth Phinney.

"It doesn't concern me, because I'm just going to listen, certainly just listen, to people in Canada and hopefully just listen to people in my riding," she said. "I tell them it won't make a difference in my vote."

CBC News: U.S. campaign putting pressure on Canadian MPs over same-sex vote

A clinic in Vancouver began recruiting heroin addicts to give them free drugs, as part of a national study that's the first of its kind in North America.

The North American Opiate Medication Initiative plans to enroll 470 hard-to-treat addicts in Vancouver's Downtown Eastside, Toronto and Montreal -- about 157 people at each site.

About half the volunteers in the $8.1-million study will receive free, pharmaceutical-grade heroin for 12 months, which they will administer themselves in a clinic under medical supervision.

CBC News: Vancouver clinic offers free heroin in North American first

Canada's response to the tsunami disaster was "amateur," according to the head of one of the biggest Canadian relief organizations.

John Watson, president and chief executive of CARE Canada, was particularly critical of the decision to send the military's Disaster Assistance Response Team to Sri Lanka last month.

CBC News: Canada's tsunami response 'amateur,' CARE chief says

John Vernon, who starred in CBC-TV's 1960s drama Wojeck before moving on to a career in Hollywood, has died. He was 72.

According to his family, the Saskatchewan-born Vernon -- who became known for playing villains, sinister officials and unsympathetic authority figures -- died peacefully at his Los Angeles home Tuesday.

Born Adolphus Raymondus Vernon Agopsowicz, he started acting while attending high school in the community of Zehner, located northeast of Regina. He went on to study at the Banff School of Fine Arts and at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London.

CBC Arts: Wojeck star John Vernon dies

The Liberal government introduced its same-sex marriage bill in the House of Commons Tuesday, kicking off the next stage of a fierce debate that will spur some MPs to vote against party lines.

Justice Minister Irwin Cotler tabled what he called the "landmark legislation" shortly after 10 a.m. EST.

At a subsequent news conference, Cotler described the Civil Marriage Act as protecting both minority rights and freedom of religion, so "that no religious officials will be forced to perform marriages that are contrary to their beliefs."

CBC News: Cotler tables 'landmark' same-sex law

Fox News commentator Bill O'Reilly has lashed out at a CBC documentary featuring guests who were highly critical of his show.

"Vicious attack on Fox News by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, totally out of any kind of bounds," said O'Reilly in his response Friday night to the Fifth Estate broadcast on Jan. 26.

"How low will they go? We'll show you the tape and you won't believe it!" was another response found on the Fox News website.

The Fifth Estate's website says the documentary examines the "war of words that's pitting conservative against liberal."

"It's loud, it's raucous, but does it have anything to do with the truth?" the site asks about the new kind of hard-hitting political debate on U.S. television.

CBC News: Fox News host slams CBC documentary

Canadian rocker Neil Young confirmed on Wednesday that he will perform at this year's Juno ceremony, which will be held in Winnipeg on April 3.

Born in Toronto, Young -- known for songs like Old Man and Rockin' in the Free World -- spent part of his childhood in Winnipeg.

A year ago, when Winnipeg was chosen as the site of the 2005 Juno Awards, the city's then-mayor, Glen Murray, said it was his "dream" to have Young attend the show.

CBC News: Neil Young to rock the Junos

The Liberals have the support of enough MPs to pass controversial same-sex marriage legislation scheduled for introduction next week, Justice Minister Irwin Cotler said Wednesday.

"The way I read the numbers, we have the support for the adoption of this legislation," Cotler told reporters as Liberal MPs met in Fredericton.

Cotler had spent part of the day walking MPs through what will be in the bill, which some backbenchers oppose because they believe in the traditional definition of marriage as being between one man and one woman.

CBC News: Cotler predicts MPs will pass same-sex bill

A B.C. lesbian couple, who accuse a Catholic men's group of discriminating against them by refusing to rent them a hall for their wedding reception, took their case to a human rights tribunal Monday.

The hearing is sure to further inflame passions over the issue, given that the Supreme Court of Canada ruled last month that religious officials opposed to same-sex marriages do not have to perform them.

CBC News: B.C. lesbians fight to hold wedding reception in Catholic hall

U.S. President George W. Bush strongly pressed Prime Minister Paul Martin to support the missile defence program during his recent visit to Ottawa, according to a report in the Washington Post.

The newspaper cites a "top Canadian official who attended the meeting between Bush and Martin" as saying Bush brought up the subject on Nov. 30 despite assurances that he wouldn't do so from Secretary of State Colin Powell and National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice.

The official said Bush "leaned across the table and said, 'I'm not taking this position, but some future president is going to say, "Why are we paying to defend Canada?"'"

CBC News: Bush pressured Martin over missile plan: report

When President Bush flew to Canada in his first international trip following his reelection, the White House portrayed it as the beginning of a fence-mending tour to bring allies back into the fold after a tense first term. But after Bush left, the Canadians were more furious than before.

"If he's going to take that speech to Europe," said a top Canadian official who attended the meeting between Bush and Martin, "he's not going to get a good reception."

For all the talk of fresh diplomacy and rebuilding frayed alliances, Bush heads into his second term still demanding that the rest of the world meet him on his terms -- and now he has redefined those terms to an even more provocative degree with an inaugural address articulating a grand vision for spreading democracy and "ending tyranny" in "every nation." With his eye on history, Bush wants to change the world. The rest of the world is not necessarily so eager to be changed.

Bush Doctrine Is Expected to Get Chilly Reception (

Software that warns kids about online predators is coming to Ontario schools as part of an initiative to crack down on child pornography and Internet luring, Attorney General Michael Bryant said yesterday. "Sending our kids onto the Internet without cyberproofing is like sending them down a dark alley alone at night in the big city," said Bryant. "Danger lurks."

The program, called Cybercops, will show Grade 7 and 8 students how predators use chat rooms and websites to lure unsuspecting victims.

London Free Press: News Section - Internet predators targeted

Prime Minister Paul Martin said Friday that he's prepared to fight an election over same-sex marriage.

Martin told reporters in Beijing that he wasn't keen to hold an election, but said he was willing to go to the polls over the issue.

The prime minister's remarks followed Conservative Leader Stephen Harper's allegation on Thursday that the Liberals' support for same-sex marriage could evolve one day into support for polygamy.

CBC News: Martin would go to polls over same-sex marriage

There is another confirmed case of Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy in Alberta.

But there is a key difference in the latest case.

This time, the cow was under seven years old, which means it was born after the 1997 ruminant-to-ruminant feed ban designed to prevent the spread of mad cow disease.

Officials say contaminated feed is the likely source for the infection.

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency says that no part of the animal entered the human food or animal feed systems and there is no risk to the public. - Calgary news from CFCN, CTV

The Panavision delivery truck packing up camera equipment at the end of a "West Wing" shoot may be the last action that the Toronto Film Studios see for a while.

"After the holidays, it's going to be pretty quiet," said Kenneth W. Ferguson, the studio's president.

The rise of Canada, in particular Toronto, as a production site for Hollywood films and television series has long been a political issue in Hollywood and elsewhere in the United States. But a variety of factors, led by the soaring value of the Canadian dollar, have given Canada a runaway film production problem of its own. The Canadian dollar had hovered in the range of about 65 United States cents from the late 1990's to early 2003, when it began to rise to its present value, 81 cents, an increase of almost 25 percent.

The New York Times > Business > World Business > Fade to Black in Canada's Film Work

A week after the Supreme Court gave the government the constitutional go-ahead to expand marriage rights to gays and lesbians, a bitter battle has emerged in Parliament that is creating deep fissures in the Liberal and Conservative parties.

Polls indicate that a comfortable majority of Canadians actively support or passively accept legislation being prepared by Prime Minister Paul Martin to redefine marriage across the country. Already courts in six provinces and one territory, all told including 85 percent of the population of nearly 32 million, have struck down old marriage laws to allow gays and lesbians to marry. Only minor protests have occurred.

The New York Times > International > Americas > Internal Splits Emerge in Canadian Parties Over Gay Marriage

Nearly two-thirds of Canadians had an unfavourable view of U.S. President George W. Bush, even though most Canadians said they had a good opinion of Americans, suggests a poll done for The Associated Press.

Just over six in 10 said they were "worried" and "disappointed" by Bush's re-election last month, said the poll conducted by Ipsos-Reid Nov. 19-22., a little more than a week before his first official visit to Canada.

CNEWS - Canada: Poll: Majority of Canadians dislike Bush

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