The U.S.-Canada Beyond the Border agreement is wide-ranging in its impact. Indeed, Prime Minister Harper referred to it Wednesday as "the most significant step forward in Canada-U.S. co-operation since (NAFTA)". This deal promises regulatory alignment (including the food and automotive sectors), quicker border crossings for business or travel (with pre-clearance options), and "screened once, accepted twice" cargo. Perhaps the biggest concern for Canadians however are the changes this agreement could have for their privacy. [more inside]
Keeping wildlife, an amphibious rodent, for uh, domestic, you know, within the city — that ain't legal, either. But in the outskirts of Calgary, that's just adorable.
The history of Toronto in photos is 90 some odd posts linked to provide a thematically organized visual overview. The vast majority of the photographs featured derive from the Toronto Archives. Should you be interested in a less visually oriented take on Toronto history, there is also the Nostalgia Tripping series, which was designed to be a bit more about storytelling than just the photos.
The Canadian government has put a negative spin on the state of emergency and situation at Attawapiskat, in northern Ontario. A Plains Cree speaking Metis woman in Montreal has prepared an excellent series of responses to the major comments being generated by the crisis at Attawapiskat. (Via:âpihtawikosisân)
"The best way I can describe our predicament to someone outside our culture is to call up the sensation of orgasm. You lose control of your destiny, and you are grateful for the loss. Time dissolves. Nothing that came before matters. You lose all sense of consequences and would sacrifice anything to safeguard the moment. Then, just seconds later, the blighted past and an uncertain future rush back in to drown you." Michael Harris writes in Walrus Magazine about coming of age in the long shadow of the AIDS epidemic. via utne. [more inside]
Street Skiing in Nelson, BC. Gorgeous cinematography of skiing down the snowy climbs and alleyways in city of Nelson BC. Watch the sparks fly. [Vimeo]
It's smooth, it's stretchy, it's waterproof - Canada's new currency feels a lot like the celluloid film you used to load into your old-fashioned camera. [more inside]
This year the CBC Massey Lectures celebrates fifty years with bestselling author, essayist, cultural observer, and famed New Yorker contributor Adam Gopnik. His subject is winter - the season, the space, the cycle. Gopnik takes us on an intimate tour of the artists, poets, composers, writers, explorers, scientists, and thinkers, who helped shape a new and modern idea of winter. Listen to Winter: Five Windows on the Season Streaming files for this years lecture will be available until Friday, November 18. [more inside]
lululemon athletica, the "yoga-inspired athletic apparel company", has rapidly become a brand fixture in the Pacific Northwest since its founding by Chip Wilson in 1998. Recently, a strange ode to Ayn Rand appeared on their website, and a "Who Is John Galt?" advertising campaign has adorned company packaging this November. Meanwhile, one of their employees has been convicted in the bizarre murder of a co-worker, in which the employees of a neighbouring Apple Store ignored the victim's cries for help.
Esi Edugyan wins the Giller Prize, the richest prize for English fiction in Canada ($50,000 to the winner). Those on the shortlist get $5,000 each.
Vintage photographs of Toronto at night is brought to you by the same people who put out Toronto in photos from the 1850s to the 1990s, and several other sets linked within.
While Occupy Wall Street has captured the attention of major American politicians, its counterpart in Canada has been mainly a municipal headache. Despite inequality north of the border rising at a comparable rate, and similar political sentiments, most Canadians also believe the movement is ineffective, though their hearts are in the right place. As the movement slows as winter weather sets in, cities are taking various measures to discourage the protests, hoping a combination of inconvenience and weather will disperse the encampments. [more inside]
Global British Columbia Sports Anchor Barry Deley wins lotto home draw, live on his own TV channel. But it turns out he's got an even more personal connection to the lottery.
Vancouver aims to "end homelessness by 2015". Officials have been working over the years to reduce the city’s homelessness, and in July passed an ambitious plan that targets eliminating street homelessness by 2015 and creating nearly 40,000 new units of social, rental, and condo housing by 2021. The plan is aimed at building multiple types of housing to address shortages, but the first three years focus mainly on supportive and social housing. It calls for 3,650 units of such housing, 1,700 of which are already funded and in either the planning or construction phase. According to city councilor Kerry Jang, the need for this type of supportive housing has skyrocketed in recent years.
The government of Canada has decided to end the Canadian Wheat Board's single desk system for the sale and export of wheat and barley. This has been on the Conservative agenda for some time now, despite some claims that farmers support the Wheat Board. Many are suggesting that the repercussions could stretch beyond wheat farmers; including concern for the town of Churchill, known mostly for the local bear population, which does 95% of their port business through the Wheat Board.
A history and primer of the Wheat Board.
It's co-op week on metafiler?
A history and primer of the Wheat Board.
It's co-op week on metafiler?
With the Ontario provincial election campaign still extremely close (warning: PDF link) in its last days, the Conservative party sends out a gay-baiting and trans-baiting direct-mail ad. [more inside]
A series of emails released through a Freedom of Information Act request shine light on collusion between the United States government and TransCanada, a corporation building a controversial pipeline from the Canadian Athabasca oil sands into its southern neighbor. The controversy extends beyond the currently poor safety record for delivering oil between the two countries, and beyond the environmental and health consequences of the oil extraction process for locals and the cost of climate changes it will contribute to, all the way to legal wrangling between Canadian media and Saudi Arabia over the "death panels"-like term "ethical oil", based upon a conservative group's advertising that argues that the purchase of Canadian-sourced oil is a morally superior act, because of oppression of women and human rights violations by the Saudi kingdom.
In Canada, "Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes" is sung to the tune of London Bridge is Falling Down, and is super depressing..
SCC approves safe injection sites. The Supreme Court of Canada today ordered the federal government to stop its efforts to shut down a safe injection clinic in Vancouver, opening the door to more clinics opening across the country. [more inside]
Frédéric Back was born in 1924 in France, where he studied drawing and lithography. He was lured to Canada by Jack London's stories and Clarence Gagnon's paintings, as well as correspondence with a Canadian pen-pal. Back moved to Canada in 1948, married his pen-pal Ghylaine Paquin, and was hired by Radio Canada at the birth of their television network to create still images for display on and to promote moving pictures. The drawings lead to experiments with animations, which lead to a series of animated shorts, starting with the wordless short Abracadabra (9:23, YT) in 1970. You can read and see more about Frédéric Back on his extensive website, and see more animations inside. [more inside]
Human foot washes up on beach near Vancouver for 11th time in four years Previously - The DNA matchup - previously again
Realtors in Cars is one of the strangest sites I've seen in some time. I have no idea how these agencies got their realtors wedged into their cars, or why.
Comic Syrup. A Blog About Canadian Comic Books.
First Air flight 6560 crashed yesterday in Canada's High Arctic. Fifteen passengers were on board, including four crew and eleven passengers. All the crew members were killed in the crash, while three pasengers survived. The plane crashed five miles from the airport in Resolute. Rescue efforts began immediately, as hundreds of military personnel were in Resolute participating in the annual Arctic military exercise Operation Nanook, an operation which includes an exercise in which military personnel respond to a mock air disaster. As a result, military helicopters, medical personnel, Canadian Coast Guard, and local fire and medical crews were on site and ready to respond immediately.
Yonge Street: Toronto Rock & Roll Stories. This documentary series by Bravo tells the story of Toronto's early rock scene, when "the Devil's music" stormed Toronto and Yonge Street became an essential destination for musicians, singers and music fans not only in Toronto but across Canada and beyond. [more inside]
Today is a holiday across most of Canada, though there's little agreement as to why we get the day off. [more inside]
"I'm going to fight this cancer now, so I can be back to fight for families when Parliament resumes"
CanadaFilter: Jack Layton, Leader of the Official Opposition following the New Democrats historic electoral victory this spring, announces he will step aside temporarily after second cancer diagnosis. Nycole Turmel recommended as interim leader. [more inside]
Still, Expo is regarded as the best world's fair ever. Its success changed the world's view of Canada, and more importantly, it changed the way Canadians viewed themselves. For the first time the country basked in the pride and the glory of its talents and accomplishments. A nation had come of age. (previously) [more inside]
Why I Quit My Job Kai Nagata on why he just quit his job as CTV's Quebec City bureau chief at age 24: a critique of Canadian government and media.
The Supreme Court of British Columbia decided that the BC Adoption Act is unconstitutional "because it treats adopted children differently from children of sperm donors. Adopted children are provided information about their biological parents, whereas the children of donors are not." [more inside]
"There are no national standards or regulations regarding forensic pathology and practices vary widely from place to place."
The Hardest Cases: When Children Die, Justice Can Be Elusive A joint investigation by PBS Frontline, ProPublica and NPR has found that medical examiners and coroners have repeatedly mishandled cases of infant and child deaths, helping to put innocent people behind bars. (Via. (Article contains descriptions of children that have been killed by abuse. May be disturbing / triggering to some readers.) [more inside]
While outside Parliament it is 2:00 AM EST, Friday June 24, inside it will remain the "Thursday June 23 Chamberverse" until the Canadian House of Commons rises. Canada's new Official Opposition, the New Democratic party is currently filibustering the Conservative majority government over Bill C-6 - An act to provide for the Resumption and Continuation of Postal Services brought forward to force postal workers at Canada Post, an arms-length Crown Corporation back to work. [more inside]
It's all about the Bordens. The Bank of Canada unveils its new series of polymer bank notes. Because no one wants soggy bills when you're makin' it rain.
CN Tower EdgeWalk, June 2011; YouTube, 2.00. For CAD175 you can harness up and walk around the five-foot-wide edge of Toronto's CN Tower, 356 metres/1,168 feet above ground level. [more inside]
The Biggest Losers. Liberal strategist Warren Kinsella explains the disastrous defeat of the party in Canada's recent general election.
Book rescue turns nightmarish. A Saskatchewan couple saved 350,000 books from being burned by a neighbor, but now the house they bought just to store the collection is collapsing from the weight. What to do?
Giving new meaning to "Contributions of employees have brought about visionary strategies that have defined not only our company, but an entire industry."
Is American law enforcement colluding with Cisco? A quick lesson on how to abuse the law and quiet whistleblowers.
"Juno" was the beachhead for Canadian forces during Operation Neptune (D-Day). 1/10th the size of the British and American forces, the Canadian units were the first to break through German lines; by the end of the day, Canadian soldiers had penetrated deeper into Normandy than any other Allied force. Storming Juno tells their story via an immersive Flash experience that interweaves live recreation, documents, and oral history from veterans. (Flash, interactive, sound)
Canadian contemporary dance icon Margie Gillis gets interviewed by right-wing network "Sun TV". Perhaps "interview" is too kind a word. (and as there is reference to it in the interview, a little background on the current PM's views on the arts)
The Supreme Court of Canada ruled today, in a 6-3 decision, that a person cannot give advance consent to sexual activity while unconscious. [more inside]
On the same morning that Dane County Circuit Judge Maryann Sumi struck down Wisconsin's infamous union-busting bill on the grounds that it violated the state's Open Meetings Law (PDF of decision, previously), Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin signed America's first state-level single-payer legislation into law. [more inside]
A bridge builder, a student of how societies hold together; an advocate of dialogue. Standing against polarized and simplistic styles of thought. Canadian philosopher Charles Taylor is Canada's best known and most widely read contemporary thinker. In books like Sources of the Self and A Secular Age, he has attempted to define the unique character of the modern age. He maps the fault-lines in our modern identity, and points to both the pitfalls and the promise of our condition. Learn about his life, history, upbringing, and... ideas. Now available, CBC IDEAS in five one-hour parts: the malaise of modernity (this special program has the same title as the 1991 Massey Lecture of the same name, but is not the same [MP3's, get them now, they will go away, and then you can only stream them]). One, Two, Three, Four, Five. [more inside]
Political shifts mustn’t threaten Canada’s unity, vision. An opinion piece by (the much loved and/or hated)Preston Manning about the recent Canadian election, and how it will affect Quebec's relationship with the rest of Canada.
Recognize Immigrant Credentials is a series of Canadian PSAs that are at once funny and heart-breaking.
Montreal-born actor William Shatner, 80, sings the National Anthem of Canada to show his appreciation for getting a Lifetime Achievement Award from Canada's Governor General, the greatest honour given to artists in the country (and yeah, in fact it comes with some cash).
Chester Brown's autobiographical works such as I Never Liked You (1.3 MB PDF) placed #38 on The Comics Journal's list of the 100 Best Comics of the 20th Century. In his new graphic novel, Paying For It, he "calmly lays out the facts of how he became not only a willing participant in but also a vocal proponent of one of the world's most hot-button topics--prostitution".