Archive for May, 2006

Immigration musn’t “just happen”

Wednesday, May 3rd, 2006

Mike Colle, who last June became Ontario’s Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, engineered a historic immigration agreement with the Liberal government late last year. The accord was another first for Canada and entailed the promise of $920 million in federal funding to Ontario over five years. (more…)

Who benefits?

Tuesday, May 2nd, 2006

The “take note” debate in Parliament that wasn’t a debate at all has come and gone. But the fact remains that according to some polls, public support for the presence of Canadian forces in Afghanistan is evenly divided between the pros and cons.

It’s so easy for all of us here, thousands of miles from Kandahar, to pass judgment on what’s right and what’s wrong. Personally, as an ex soldier, my heart goes out to Canadians over there but my head asks the age-old question: Who really profits from war? (more…)

Will media turn up the heat?

Monday, May 1st, 2006

(Canscene) — May 3, World Press Freedom Day was scheduled to be celebrated at the National Press Club in Ottawa less than a month after Canada’s environment minister forbade Mark Tushingham, environmental scientist with the ministry to speak to club members on his new novel.

Hotter Than Hell

Speculation is rife as to the reason: (more…)

Can the “defence” mentality take hold here?

Monday, May 1st, 2006

(Canscene) — President Eisenhower at the end of his term of office warned  Americans about the growth of the military/industrial complex. Somewhere along the line, though, people stopped listening.

Somewhere along the line the much-reviled armaments game — which not only fuels wars but furnishes the fire power for gangsters to blow one another (and innocent bystanders) away — became the “defence industries.” (more…)

“Make sure they get it”: Justin Trudeau

Monday, May 1st, 2006

(Canscene) Last month in Toronto, Justin Trudeau, chair of the Katimavik Foundation presented a Nova Scotia student with one of Canada’s top environmental awards. His congratulatory remarks included the stern but hopeful reminder that the environmental fate of Canada depends on its young people.

Earth Day, Justin Trudeau

Joanna McNeil of St. Peter’s, NS, was named the national winner of the 2006 Toyota Earth Day Scholarship Program, (more…)

Some multicultural publications

Monday, May 1st, 2006

(Canscene) — Who’s trying to persuade us that Multiculturalism in Canada is on the way out? If these new publications are any indication, the “M” word is very much alive and well in the land of the Maple Leaf.There’s the English language Newcomers’ News, just celebrating its second anniversary and Kaleidescope, enjoying a welcome return to the ethnocultural publishing scene after a few years’ absence. Coming to our knowledge also is the web ‘zine The New Hungarian Voice. (more…)

Four birthdays and a farewell take me back in time

Monday, May 1st, 2006

(Canscene) — In the space of nine days last month, my wife and I helped celebrated four birthdays and a commemoration of the lives of a couple of very good friends; she died a few years ago, he recently.

Since not one of these good folk was under 70 and some had passed into their eighties, it came as a bit of a shock to me to realize that in age, I outranked them all. (more…)

Remakes and Makeovers

Monday, May 1st, 2006

(Canscene) — I recall the enthusiasm with which media (including this blog) greeted C.R.A.Z.Y at last year’s Toronto Internatonal Film Festival.

I recoil, however at the recent reports that there’s a proposal afoot to produce an English version, set in an American city instead of Montreal. (more…)

Three books I recommend without reserve

Monday, May 1st, 2006

(Canscene) —This, I’m sure isn’t an original thought but what really grabs me about a work of fiction, whether book, play or moving image, is the fact that it “creates and peoples its own universe” It must reach out to all five senses in its attempt to tell a story.

In quick succession last month, I moved into three of these fictional habitats all of which gave me total satisfaction Each of these novels has been in print for a few years; each, according to the blurbs has enjoyed widespread acclaim.

I’d never heard of them until two were distributed to members by the Spadina Road Library Book Club. The third was the subject of raves from my visiting brother and sister-in-law who left a copy with me when they returned to England.

Bel Canto, Kite Runner, Shadow in the Wind

The multicultural trio of page turners were: Bel Canto by Ann Patchett, The Kite Runner by Khaled Hossein and The Shadow of the Wind, by Carlos Ruiz Zafon. (more…)

How to brush off a request

Monday, May 1st, 2006

(Canscene) — In the March issue of Canscene, I wrote an article which contained the following passage: (more…)