Tag Archives: Rob Ford

Shame Day: Sun News

Sun News and New Prosperity Mine

Some of you may remember the report I wrote this past summer describing the debate over the New Prosperity Mine application in Williams Lake. I attended a few debates over the mine with my mother-in-law and there was a very strong division in the room. Supporters of the mine wore blue scarves, were primarily white, and mostly discussed the economic benefits. Most of the individuals speaking out against the mine were from the reserves surrounding the mining area, where they would be most closely affected.

Why do they want to kill off these poor guys? But seriously, according to what I heard in the presentation, even losing a few grizzly would be a huge problem.

There were also several very detailed environmental reports brought forward after the general public discussion. While I wasn’t able to make every one due to work, I was able to sit in on a report by a grizzly bear specialist. They shared exactly how the mine project would harm the already threatened grizzly bear community in the area. Again, that was only one one of many other extensive environmental reports.

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Shame Day: Rob Ford and the Enbridge Pipeline Project

Well, you’ve probably all heard about Rob Ford by now. You know, smoking crack, allegations of domestic abuse, recently said this while defending himself to a crowd of reporters [Warning: for mild language]:

I’m not actually a Torontonian, in fact, I live on the other side of the country so other than my irritation that people like Ford are able to retain leadership in our country, the Ford story doesn’t really affect me. I’m not even going to get into the embarrassing antics of Ford since I’m sure you’ve heard most of them already, but if you would like all the details I’ve heard thus far, you could check out this episode of the Fifth Estate. It features practically all the allegations against Ford that are out there, and delves into the danger this controversy has caused for the community where it took place. Continue reading

An American Invasion

Attending college in the States means that I’ve missed a lot of goings-on in Canada. Apparently Toronto Mayor Rob Ford is a terrible mayor. I did not know this. On May 1st came to another realization, but one that filled me with far more trepidation than a mayor who has given up on his diet.

Driving through an old neighbourhood, my family and I saw that Canadian superstore Zellers was having a 50-80% off liquidation sale. A well-known chain in the country, the chain is a subsidiary of the Hudson’s Bay Company (HBC). After trying on a few jeans my brother asked the woman in charge of the change room what was happening, and she told us that this branch was becoming a Target.

Fastforward to me doing research on Wikipedia, and it turns out that in January of last year the Target Corporation purchased lease agreements for 220 Zellers stores for almost 2 billion dollars. The end result was 189 stores for the company, and of these 39 were resold to Walmart Canada. I was shocked by the idea of a prominent Canadian chain being bought out by an American company, but it doesn’t stop there.

The HBC is currently owned ( as of 2008) by New York-based company NRDC Equity Partners. This is a company that has its roots in the Canadian fur trade, the foundation of this country. Grade school children all over Canada learn from a very early age in history classes that it was the fur trade that brought people to this country, and that The Bay is the oldest commercial corporation in North America and one of the oldest in the world.

What bothers me is the knowledge that this country faces a sort of invasion coming from south of the 49th parallel. It’s no mystery that American companies have more money and sway than those in Canada, but it’s terrifying that they’re establishing themselves so firmly here. Just walking around in the heart of downtown yesterday and I saw a Panera Bread, yet another company that has spread into the north within the past five years.

Canada isn’t a world power in terms of military, but our impact on popular culture has been steadily increasing. I may be blowing this whole thing out of proportion, but I just don’t see a world that takes us seriously when all of our businesses are run by America.