The NDP Leader has returned his party to its traditional socialist roots, but he has had to confront issues of race and identity as he fights for progressive votes
Wednesday, October 9, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A1

The moment he heard the word "brownface," Jagmeet Singh blinked, hard.

This was supposed to be a routine campaign stop: a town hall with 100 or so NDP supporters in northern Toronto. Around 7 p.m., Mr.Singh began taking questions from the audience. That's when a reporter stepped up to the microphone and broke the news: a racist photo of Justin Trudeau had emerged.

Behind Mr. Singh stood a handful of supporters, and the shock of the news played out on their faces. A young black woman looked visibly disturbed. The South Asian man next to her mouthed something that looked like "Oh my God." But Mr. Singh remained still. "Racism is real," he said. The expression on his face wasn't one of anger or frustration - more like resignation.

A couple of hours later, after he'd seen the photos of Mr. Trudeau with his face painted brown and a cartoonish turban on his head, Mr. Singh stood in front of a pair of beige curtains inside a dimly lit airport hotel room, staring into a camera. "I want to talk to all the kids out there, all the folks that lived this, who are now grown up and still feeling the pain of racism," Mr. Singh said. He was wearing the same robin's-egg blue turban and white button-up shirt from earlier that evening.

"I want you to know that you have value, you have worth, and you are loved."

Mr. Singh's reaction, which came just a week into the election campaign, was reminiscent of another moment, shortly before the NDP leadership vote in 2017, when a woman interrupted a Brampton event shouting about "sharia" and the "Muslim brotherhood." Mr. Singh was lauded for his calm demeanour throughout the encounter, and the resultant celebrity helped him win on the first ballot in October, 2017.

Back then, he was hailed as a breath of fresh air. This was after five years of Tom Mulcair, who led the NDP to a rout in 2015, dropping to 44 seats from 103. Mr. Singh was young and flamboyant, and had amassed a huge following on social media (as of this week, he can count among his Instagram followers Drake and Rihanna). He connected with young people - particularly young people of colour - and promised, after the centrist Mulcair years, to nudge the party back toward its NDP roots.

But in the lead-up to the federal campaign, the movement many expected Mr. Singh to build had not materialized.

Several high-profile members of Parliament, including Nathan Cullen and Murray Rankin, decided not to run again. Fundraising plunged (in the second quarter, the NDP pulled in just $1.4-million, roughly even with the Greens) and party divisions endured.

Much of the disarray was of Mr. Singh's own making. He had no experience on a national campaign and brought along a team from his time as an Ontario MPP in Brampton that lacked the institutional knowledge needed in Ottawa. Caucus members second-guessed him.

And under the national spotlight, the candidate himself stumbled repeatedly. For a man who had found success in just about everything he'd tried, Mr. Singh appeared unsteady, unprepared and, in his worst moments, uninterested. With the weight of expectations on his shoulders - as the first racialized person to run for the country's highest office - each of his stumbles felt seismic.

Four weeks into the campaign, polls put the NDP in distant third. But the brownface scandal seems to have been a turning point for Mr.

Singh. Once again, he received widespread praise for "rising above" the incident, and in the weeks since, he has gained momentum.

On the campaign trail, he has looked comfortable and confident. Last week saw one of Mr.

Singh's sharpest moments, when he turned the tables on a reporter during an exchange over providing access to drinking water in First Nations communities. "Why is that even a question?" he asked.

But no matter what Mr. Singh does, the conversation keeps coming back to the colour of his skin. Just last week, hours before the Frenchlanguage debate in Montreal, an older man pulled him aside while he campaigned in Atwater Market. "You should cut your turban off," the man told Mr. Singh. "You'll look more like a Canadian." Mr. Singh responded with what has become his customary grace. But it's not just his performance that is under the microscope here.

The treatment he has received during this campaign has laid bare an ugly truth about our country: that Canada has much further to go in terms of truly embracing diversity. That's the reason Mr. Singh has to answer the same question over and over again, a question none of his opponents has ever had to contemplate: "Is Canada ready for a prime minister who looks like you?" Setting aside the fact that Canadians have never elected an NDP government, Mr. Singh says the answer is yes. But with an election less than two weeks away, it's not clear even he believes it.

The party Mr. Singh inherited in 2017 bore little resemblance to the NDP under Ed Broadbent, or even under Jack Layton. That was the party built on social democratic principles, that believed in equality and the importance of a strong welfare state above all else.

But when Mr. Layton died in August, 2011, three months after leading the party to official opposition status, Mr. Mulcair became leader and started pulling the NDP toward the centre, just as the Liberals were elbowing their way further to the left. As a result, the 2015 election saw an awkward role reversal, with the Liberals promising years of deficits, while the NDP pledged surpluses and a clampdown on spending. Not surprisingly, the NDP lost almost all the ground it had gained in 2011 to the Liberals.

This time around, the Liberals are holding on to many of their centre-left positions, leaving Mr. Singh to carve out territory even further to the left. On climate change, he has pledged to spend $15-billion in part to cut emissions by 38 per cent below 2005 levels by 2030, compared with Mr. Trudeau's promise for "net zero emissions" by 2050. To tackle income inequity, he has said he would reinstate a federal minimum wage, at $15 an hour, and build more affordable housing.

To pay for it all, Mr. Singh will increase corporate taxes and create a new 1-per-cent tax on the "super rich." As for when he might balance the budget - a cause near and dear to Mr. Mulcair's heart - Mr. Singh won't make any promises, except to say that the NDP would do so "when prudent."

All of this was supposed to draw clear lines between the NDP and the Liberals. It might not be enough. One of the NDP's key planks would see it dedicate $10-billion a year to extend prescription drug coverage to all Canadians, and to fold dental, mental health and eye care into the public system. But the Liberal campaign has promised pharmacare, too (though they've only pledged a $6-billion "down payment"). The incumbents have also echoed an NDP pledge to lower cellphone and internet rates.

On issues where Mr. Singh clearly opposes the Liberals, he has struggled to articulate his own positions. In the past, he has stood firmly against the Trans Mountain project, which would run through his home riding of Burnaby, B.C., many of whose residents are fiercely opposed to the development. When it comes to the question of future pipelines - whether he would grant provincial vetoes and how he would engage with Indigenous communities over the projects - he has failed to make his position clear.

The policies he seems most comfortable talking about are traditional NDP ones that would have helped him in his own early years.

Mr. Singh was born in Scarborough in 1979, to parents who were recent immigrants from Punjab, the heart of India's Sikh community. By the time Jimmy, as Mr. Singh was then known, was in second grade, his father was a practising psychiatrist in Windsor, Ont., who paid for martial arts lessons and private school. He also emphasized the importance of dressing well as a kind of "social armour" in the predominantly white city. "As people of colour, we couldn't afford not to look good," Mr. Singh wrote in his recent memoirs, Love and Courage. "He wanted to make sure we never felt the way he did: like we didn't belong."

At the age of 8, Mr. Singh - who spent weekends serving meals with his mother at the local gurdwara - decided to revert to his birth name.

He also decided to grow out his hair and began wearing a patka, the piece of cloth worn by boys to cover their emerging top knot. Eventually, he would trade in the patka for a turban and kirpan.

At school, Jagmeet was laughed at, beaten and called names such as "diaper head" and "Paki." That was only part of his torment. In his memoirs, he says he was sexually abused by a martial-arts instructor, which he only disclosed to friends and family more than a decade later.

The experience, he wrote, left him feeling "dirty" and "like I didn't deserve love."

At home, meanwhile, the family's middleclass dream was coming apart. The elder Mr.

Singh began drinking heavily, and over the next decade, he lost his medical licence and the family home, and had to file for bankruptcy. When Mr. Singh was in his second year at the University of Western Ontario in London, Ont., he brought his 15-year-old brother, Gurratan, to live with him, fearing for his safety.

The years he spent as a student working parttime retail jobs to feed himself and his brother gave him insight into how precariously many Canadians live. And dealing with his father's addiction and recovery reinforced the importance of public institutions.

Similarly, the values he'd first learned from his faith - the values that lie at the core of the NDP - were ones he watched play out in his own life: community service, sharing of wealth and advocating on behalf of the marginalized.

The fall of 1984 was a seminal time for the Sikh community. That October, Indira Gandhi was assassinated by her Sikh bodyguards, igniting a wave of anti-Sikh violence that left between 3,000 and 17,000 dead across India. A year later, a Sikh extremist group bombed Air India flight 182, killing 329 people, most of them Canadians.

It was a painful series of events that sowed deep divisions between Hindus and Sikhs, and Mr. Singh grew up watching the trauma ripple through his community. As a young criminal defence lawyer, he began organizing "know your rights" seminars to teach students how to deal with race-based profiling. The seminars were hosted by the Sikh Activist Network, a community of young people created by Mr.

Singh's younger brother, Gurratan, and his longtime friend Amneet Singh. The group's arts showcases drew thousands of young people and served as an incubator for local talent, including bestselling poet Rupi Kaur.

A turning point for the young activists came in 2010, when two Liberal MPs circulated a petition to formally recognize the 1984 violence against Sikhs as a genocide. For decades, the Liberals had been the de facto party for many immigrant groups. But then Liberal leader Michael Ignatieff refused to support the petition and accused the groups of being "polarizing."

Gurratan encouraged Mr. Singh to take a run at politics as part of the NDP, whose new leader, Jack Layton, had supported the petition. Mr. Singh travelled to Ottawa to meet with Mr. Layton, who reinforced his decision to run. He lost his first campaign, in Bramalea-Gore-Malton, in 2011, but later that year, ran for the provincial NDP in the same area. This time, he won.

His earlier work with the Sikh Activist Network made him a controversial figure. "There's a divide in the South Asian community," says Rupinder Kaur, who worked for both Mr. Layton and Mr. Singh.

"Some are still very connected and loyal to their Indian roots. Those 'pro-India' people may be uncomfortable or unsupportive of Mr. Singh's activism against India, especially on human-rights issues."

Still, he owes much of his early success to that activism. The "know your rights" seminars won him a huge following of young people. He also created a community space at his constituency office where they could hang out and play host to events. Many of these same people would go on to become campaign volunteers and organizers.

In 2016, when his brother (who remains a close adviser) and others urged him to run for the federal leadership, Mr. Singh was wary. He was already deputy leader of the Ontario NDP, and he was hoping for an NDP victory in 2018 that might lead to an appointment as attorneygeneral. Nonetheless, his supporters put out feelers to determine Mr. Singh's viability as a candidate. What they heard was that Mr. Singh represented a fresh face supporters might get excited about.

His campaign focused on four planks - climate change, inequality, reconciliation and electoral reform - that represented a pivot back to the left. He won in the first round, with 53 per cent of the vote.

On an unusually humid August afternoon in New Westminster, B.C., Mr. Singh was looking for a quiet place to sit. He was at a farmer's market and the air smelled of baked strawberries. He'd just wrapped up a scrum in front of glum-faced TV camera operators, railing against Mr. Trudeau "protecting the very wealthy and powerful," while wearing a Rolex watch and $60 T-shirt.

Deeper in the park, there were picnic tables and park benches. But Mr. Singh decided he wanted to sit right there, on the grass. "I'm a grass person," he said. He was wearing tightly fitted jeans, and the grass stuck to his bare ankles. But he looked perfectly pleased, stretching out his legs and setting his palms down behind him.

He speaks in a soothing, surfer-dude tone (he does, in fact, surf). His sentences are frequently punctuated with millennial slang - it's never "yes," but "100 per cent"; not "good," but "awesome." His assessment of two dogs at the market earlier: "They seem pretty chill."

As he spoke about this park and its proximity to his Burnaby riding - about how he'd like to raise a family there with his wife, fashion designer and Instagram influencer Gurkiran - he did so with an earnestness that seemed completely genuine.

But the illusion came apart moments later, when he turned his focus to Mr. Layton.

"He was really humble," he said, gesturing at the grass and the park around us. Suddenly, his insistence on sitting on the ground seemed like political artifice. Mr. Layton was, after all, the kind of politician people wanted to have a beer with - the kind of guy who would have insisted on sitting cross-legged on the grass.

"Really down to earth," he repeated.

Another comparison Mr. Singh wanted to draw between himself and Mr. Layton: The late leader told everyone he was in it to win. That was a major shift for the NDP, to see itself as a party that might wield real power.

Now, Mr. Singh says he, too, is running to become prime minister.

It's an audacious claim and one that will be difficult to deliver on. Since taking on the leadership, Mr. Singh has failed to unite the party.

Some of it has been outside his control. Mr. Layton's success permanently raised expectations.

And after Mr. Mulcair's ouster, with the party millions of dollars in debt, a number of highprofile NDP figures passed on the idea of taking the reins.

His first months as leader were dimmed by criticism from his own caucus. MPs publicly second-guessed his decisions (most notably around kicking out Saskatoon MP Erin Weir after a sexual-harassment investigation). Even Mr.

Mulcair has weighed in - unprecedented behaviour for a former leader - criticizing Mr. Singh for waiting almost 18 months before running for a seat in the House. (It was only under intense pressure from his own caucus that Mr. Singh finally ran in Burnaby South.) After Monday's chaotic televised debate, it was nearly impossible to declare a winner. Mr. Singh was singled out for rising above the fray by some pundits, although Mr. Mulcair proclaimed Mr. Trudeau and Mr. Scheer to be the winners.

Mr. Singh hasn't done himself any favours.

Former staffers and advisers say he was unprepared for how different Ottawa would be from Queen's Park. Some of the young people he'd trained in his Brampton constituency office, and who had taken key positions on his campaign, clashed with the Ottawa party machine.

Several former staffers say that in public appearances, they struggled to keep the leader onscript and had to persuade him not to just "wing it."

In a scrum in April, 2018, outside the House of Commons, Mr. Singh was unsure of his own party's position on a recent gun control bill. In a CTV interview this past January, when asked to respond to comments from the Chinese ambassador amid a continuing trade war, Mr. Singh was unaware of the latest developments.

Granted, he has made up much of that ground in the campaign, gaining confidence with each week. As for his earlier fumbles, Mr.

Singh believes the reaction was overblown. "The people I talk to - their lives, what they're going through - is this something that's going to change their life?" he asked. "No."

When pressed on the fact that some Canadians have had their livelihoods threatened by the trade war - canola farmers, for example - he became impatient. "So, it was who said what about who," he said, the words spilling quickly from his mouth. "I obviously want to be as prepared as possible and always be on top of every issue that comes up. But I don't see that as a thing that impedes the life of someone that I'm trying to improve."

Meanwhile, the party itself has struggled to fill out its ranks. Eleven of its 39 MPs announced they wouldn't be running again, and by Day 1 of the campaign, it had nominated fewer than 200 candidates for 338 ridings. (It now has a full slate.)

Mr. Singh tried to paint that as a positive - an "exciting" opportunity to bring in new faces. He cited the example of a "rising star" he had recruited to run in Hamilton.

"Dave Christopherson is going to continue to help out," he said, referring to the long-time MP who announced his retirement last year. "He's actively supporting" - he paused for several seconds. He clasped then unclasped his hands.

Turning to his assistant, he asked: "Do you remember his name?" The assistant shook his head. Mr. Singh was silent, a bewildered look on his face.

"Oh my God. Let me come back to his name," he muttered. "Um, let me come back to his name."

A few moments later, in the middle of another thought, he finally came up with it: Matt Green. His face lit up.

"So, we've got two people: the brand new city councillor running and the veteran helping him.

It's great."

A few days after the brownface scandal erupted, Mr. Singh appeared on the French-language talk show Tout le monde en parle, which regularly draws a million viewers an episode - roughly 10 per cent of Quebec's population.

For Mr. Singh, it was a crucial night. His chances in the general election are directly tied to his performance in Quebec, where there are 78 seats up for grabs. In 2011, Mr. Layton's Orange Wave took 59 seats (in large part thanks to a successful appearance on Tout le monde en parle), a figure that was reduced to just 14 under Mr.

Mulcair. All of those seats are now in jeopardy, with polls putting the NDP in fifth place, behind the Liberals, Bloc Québécois, Conservatives and Greens.

With the show's upbeat music playing, Mr. Singh bounded onto the stage. Host Guy Lepage wasted no time, aiming his first question squarely at Mr. Singh's yellow turban: What does he say to Quebeckers who are against politicians wearing religious symbols?

The question was a reference to Quebec's Bill 21, which ushered in a ban on government workers wearing religious symbols. Bill 21 means that Mr. Singh - who could, in theory, lead the country - would be banned from holding a government job in its largest province. Outside Quebec, he has described the law as "state-sanctioned discrimination." Tonight, however, his answer was more nuanced. As Mr. Lepage's cohosts nodded politely, Mr. Singh called himself an "ally" to Quebec. He promised to give the province more money for immigration and culture, and to allow for an opt out of federal programs, with compensation. He also said that, although he personally stands against Bill 21, he wouldn't interfere with a legal challenge.

It was not his first attempt to connect with Quebeckers. Early in the campaign, he created Quebec-specific ads that show him with his hair down, tying on his turban. "Like you, I'm proud of my identity," he says in the French-language ad. Repeatedly, he has drawn parallels between Quebeckers' feelings of being a minority with his own experience as an outsider.

But will that be enough to win over a province where many believe multiculturalism poses a threat to its distinct identity and where hate crimes are steadily rising? From 2015 to 2016, Quebec saw a 21-per-cent jump in such crimes, with a large proportion directed at Muslim and Arab communities. In 2017, they jumped another 49 per cent.

It's not just Quebec. Comments on Mr. Singh's social media posts are frequently littered with racist language. Some journalists on Parliament Hill continue to mispronounce his name (it's Jug-meet). During a stop in Toronto, he was mistaken in front of a Globe and Mail reporter for Harjit Sajjan, the Liberal cabinet minister, despite the fact that they look nothing alike, and Mr. Sajjan is nearly a decade older. But they both wear turbans.

Race has been a factor for Mr. Singh's campaign from the start. Initially, at least, it was seen as an asset, proof of the NDP's progressive bona fides. There seems to have been an assumption that, despite the diversity of Canada's South Asian communities - and the deep and lingering divisions between Sikhs and Hindus - that the Indian diaspora would unite behind him, along with other minorities and historically marginalized communities.

It's not that simple. Early on, his team showed his image to focus groups and asked for their reaction. "Quite frankly, some people - a lot of people - think he's a fundamentalist Muslim. They just don't know," says Michael Balagus, a senior adviser on the Singh campaign. "They assumed that this must be a very, very socially conservative person, dressed in this religious garb."

If anything, Mr. Singh's candidacy has shone a spotlight on how poorly equipped much of the country remains in having nuanced conversations about race. In the hours after the release of the brownface image, reporters on Mr. Trudeau's plane - a group that did not include a single person of colour - focused almost entirely on what the image would mean for the Liberal campaign. The conversation about race was flattened into questions such as: "Is this photo racist?"

Mr. Singh, meanwhile, has faced repeated questions about his views on Sikh separatism, with journalists asking him to explain his attendance at events where speakers have called for an independent Khalistan. At one rally in particular, in 2015, Mr. Singh spoke in front of a poster of Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale, the leader of an armed extremist group. In response, Mr. Singh has said his attendance at such events was focused on promoting peace. "I have always tried to give space to all voices so that we can move together towards peace and reconciliation," he wrote in The Globe last year.

Others have questioned an exchange that took place between Mr. Singh and former CBC reporter Terry Milewski, who asked him - on the day after he was named NDP Leader - for his views on Talwinder Singh Parmar, identified by the Air India inquiry as the mastermind behind the bombing. Repeatedly throughout the interview, the reporter demanded that Mr. Singh denounce Parmar. The newly minted leader sidestepped the questions, condemning the attack itself, but opting to focus on bridging the divide between Hindu and Sikh communities. For days afterward, Mr. Singh was accused of "refusing" to condemn a terrorist. (In later interviews, he explicitly condemned Parmar.)

To his supporters, the fact that he was being asked these questions only reinforced their belief that Mr. Singh faces a different standard. Other Canadian politicians, including Justin Trudeau, have also taken part in events, such as the annual Khalsa Day parade in Toronto, where separatist messages are commonly displayed. Besides, they argue that religious violence in India, its effects on Sikh identity and the issue of intergenerational trauma are complicated - not well suited for the blunt questioning Mr. Singh has faced from mostly non-Sikh journalists.

Sarbjit Kaur, a communications strategist who is Sikh, called such questions "outright inaccurate, unfair, misguided" and, ultimately, "exhausting." Ms. Kaur, who is a Liberal, says, "I'm not NDP, but I was really, really upset when those types of allegations were being made the day after he did something so historic."

For all those who worry that Mr. Singh's race and religion have become too front and centre in his candidacy, there are others who criticize him for the opposite. During the debate this week, after Mr. Singh said he would not intervene on Bill 21, he was attacked by Mr. Trudeau for putting politics first.

Toronto-based activist Desmond Cole, who worked alongside Mr. Singh in campaigning against police carding of racialized communities, say that Mr. Singh has let down some of those same groups since taking on NDP leadership. "I have been disappointed with Jagmeet Singh since he became leader of the federal NDP - deeply disappointed," says Mr. Cole. He questions whether Mr. Singh has been overly concerned with being labelled radical. "You could argue that being a brown, Sikh man in a turban, being the first person of colour to lead a political party - that a lot is being asked of him in that scenario," Mr. Cole says. "But what's the point? What are we celebrating when you're the first person of colour but when [issues facing racialized persons come up] come up, you say, 'It's too risky for me to say something?' "

Mr. Singh counters that he has, in fact, been taking strong positions, adding simply: "My existence is a strong position." He recognizes that all this - having his actions dissected and endlessly parsed for significance - is part of the burden of being the first. He also realizes that his performance will likely determine how much longer it will be before another racialized person is given the same opportunity.

"It can inspire more people. Or, if the backlash is so much - if it's so difficult and so negative - maybe it discourages people," he says. "I feel that weight, that burden. I'm aware of it, and I'm motivated by it."

Spend enough time around Mr. Singh, and you're bound to hear him utter the words "charhdi kala," a Punjabi term from Sikhism he first learned from his mother that translates roughly into "optimism." It's the belief that, in the face of adversity, you must maintain a positive mindset.

It will take a lot more than optimism to propel Mr. Singh to a win on Oct. 21. Even with the small bump in support after the brownface scandal, the NDP has only just managed to pull ahead of the Greens.

Some have also questioned whether Mr. Singh even wants the top job, arguing he conceded the race before it even started, when he said in August that he wouldn't prop up a Conservative minority.

But that's nothing new, his supporters say. "They always count my brother out," Gurratan says. "And he's consistently proven them wrong." For proof, he points to the 2017 heckling incident in Brampton that first propelled Mr. Singh into the spotlight. He led the crowd in a chant of "love and courage" to drown out the heckler - the motto his team had only just created for him.

"What we were interested in was creating a movement," says Mo Dhaliwal, the strategist who came up with the slogan. "Because what's different about this guy is how he conducts himself. Yes, he has interesting policy ideas, but he has a way of being that's so unique."

That way of being - the charhdi kala - is what has seen him through his toughest challenges: the bullying, the abuse, his father's addiction. It also signifies a small but crucial difference in how Mr. Singh approaches the world: He refuses to define himself by his race or by the racist acts he's been subject to. Instead, he defines himself through his responses to those acts.

"Living in the struggle, living when things are tough, is very normal for me," he says. "Those painful things taught me to see the connection we share - that we're all often feeling like we don't belong, and that many people are also hurting and struggling."

Sitting in the park in New Westminster, Mr. Singh - the man who either just wants to hang out on the grass or the politician trying to evoke the late Mr. Layton - repeats what he said earlier. "I'm fighting to become PM," he says. "I'm running to become the prime minister of Canada."

He used to watch the leader debates as a kid growing up in Windsor, he continues. If you'd asked him then what a prime minister looked like, he would've pointed to someone who looked like Mr. Scheer or Mr. Trudeau.

Now, children across Canada have had a chance to see him up on the stage, looking calm and confident - and very different from his opponents. "If you ask them what a PM looks like, they're going to say, 'It can look like anything.' " He smiles at the thought. "That's an awesome and powerful thing."

That optimism could be an act of selfdelusion, or it just might be an act of courage.

Associated Graphic

On the campaign trail, NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh has looked confident and his sentences are punctuated with millennial slang: '100 per cent' and 'awesome.'



New Democratic Party Leader Jagmeet Singh arrives for a town hall at the campaign office of Maria Augimeri, candidate for the Humber River-Black Creek riding, in Toronto on Sept. 18.

Mr. Singh, seen speaking at a town hall at Ms. Augimeri's office, first ran federally for the NDP in 2011 in the riding of Bramalea-Gore-Malton. Although he lost, he ran successfully later that year in the same area for the Ontario NDP.

Friday, October 18, 2019


An Oct. 9 profile of Jagmeet Singh said the NDP leader would be banned from holding a government job in Quebec. In fact, only government employees "in a position of authority" are prohibited from wearing religious symbols under Bill 21.

Green Party Leader Elizabeth May looks for big gains in her fourth, and likely last, election as global warming emerges as a key issue
Thursday, October 17, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A1

SIDNEY, B.C. -- Elizabeth May is in the middle of her fourth federal election campaign as Leader of the Green Party, and this one, she says, feels different. For once, she is happy to be here.

"I've always contemplated quitting - it's one of my happy places," says Ms. May, who turned 65 in June.

"I don't like politics, and I have always believed no one should stay in a position too long."

Ms. May, who has led the Greens since 2006, was keen to walk away from it all four years ago.

The results of the 2015 election left her crushed: Green support had collapsed in the final days of the campaign as centre-left voters united behind Justin Trudeau's Liberals.

Ms. May won her own seat in Saanich-Gulf Islands handily, but the Greens' share of the popular vote continued to slide, from 6.8 per cent of the popular vote in 2008, down to 3.9 per cent in 2011, and 3.5 per cent in 2015. She returned to Parliament once more as the lone Green MP, weighed down by her failure to meet expectations of a breakthrough of a dozen seats and a clear mandate from Canadians.

After the grind of that election tour, her daughter, Victoria Cate May Burton, a fixture at Ms. May's side through three federal campaigns, declared she would not do another; she wanted to focus on her studies. For Ms. May, it was her cue to look for the exit ramp.

But she did not want to quit on her constituents, so Ms. May took the successor search into her own hands. "It would be embarrassing, hard, to have a leader of the party that wants to do things I couldn't possibly support, when I'm the only MP for that party," she explained. "I asked multiple people, and I failed to find one candidate who was a person I really respected, who was willing to take it on," she says.

She set her retirement plans aside, and is now relieved with her decision.

This fall, the party started out the election campaign with its best electoral opportunity to date.

Greens have made inroads across the country, holding seats in four provincial parliaments, while the federal Greens picked up a second seat in a by-election this spring, when Paul Manly captured Nanaimo-Ladysmith. Plus, huge numbers of Canadians have mobilized around teenage activist Greta Thunberg, whose climate strikes have put the spotlight on the urgent need for global efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

In theory, there has never been a better time to offer voters an election platform centred on climate action. "Boy, am I glad I'm here right now as leader," Ms. May says. "This is the campaign of our lives, we are going to win a lot of seats."

To transform those advantages into enough seats in Parliament to have influence in Canada's next government, the Greens need to demonstrate that they are ready, at least, for opposition party status - that Ms. May isn't a one-woman show, and the Greens are not a single-issue party. But with the polls indicating the New Democrats and Jagmeet Singh picking up steam, the Greens are in danger of being left behind, again. The party is consolidating its resources, in the final days of the campaign, on Vancouver Island and in the Maritimes. The Nanos national tracking poll, as of Oct. 15, showed the Greens with 9-per-cent support. But that support has to hold up all the way to the polling stations for Ms. May to return to Parliament with a caucus of her own - and that has been where the party has failed in the past.

If the party once again fails to make substantial gains, it will be difficult for Ms. May to remain in charge.

At the same time, it is difficult to imagine the Greens without her.

"The party itself is her elongated shadow," says Richard Johnston, a political science professor at the University of British Columbia. If the Greens can win a clutch of seats, they can argue they are more than a boutique operation, he says, but as it stands, "the institution is owned by Elizabeth. How do you groom successors?" Ms. May lives in a small apartment in the seaside town of Sidney, B.C. It is a plain building catering to retirees, with a sluggish elevator that imposes its own sleepy pace on Ms. May's hectic campaign schedule.

On this September morning, Ms. May's assistant, Alexa Lewis, is trying to keep the candidate on track for a commercial flight bound for a campaign event in another province. But Ms. May skipped out on her usual Sunday morning after-mass coffee at St. Andrew's Anglican Church, and she won't rush through her ritual of making coffee in a French press before settling into a comfortable chair to talk about the climate crisis.

The 2019 election, Ms. May says, is pivotal for the country - the planet, even. Canada, and the rest of the world, must begin now to launch dramatic countermeasures for climate change to ensure global average temperature does not rise more than 1.5 C above preindustrial levels, the target the United Nations' Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) says must be met to avert catastrophic climate change.

The Greens are ready with a plan that would have Canada set an example for the world, she says. The NDP, Liberals and Conservatives all offer their own climate-action strategies, but only the Green plan aims to meet the targets set out in the IPCC report by the year 2030.

The Green climate plan, dubbed "Mission Possible," offers a path to meet international targets to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 by doubling Canada's current commitment to reductions. It's an ambitious target. "There is no denying the level of ambition the Green Party has in tackling climate change. They are playing a lead role in this race to the top," according to Sarah Petrevan, senior policy adviser for Clean Energy Canada, an energy think tank. "But I am not sure how they are going to get there."

The Greens' plan would require co-operation at the provincial level. Governments from Alberta to Ontario are pushing back against the national climate-action plan advanced by Justin Trudeau's Liberals - and that is with Mr. Trudeau's investment in the Trans Mountain oil-pipeline expansion. The Greens would cancel the pipeline, hike the carbon tax, effectively shutter the oil sands and squelch B.C.'s efforts to build a liquefied natural gas sector.

With its commitment to rapidly shift the economy to clean energy, the Green platform is a tough sell especially in Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba, and the party has expended few resources trying to woo Prairie voters.

Ms. May did spend a day campaigning in Calgary, however, arriving at a suburban train station in a spotless, top-of-the-line Tesla. A host of Alberta candidates - who stand very little chance of getting elected on Oct. 21 - dutifully assembled around their leader as the backdrop for a campaign announcement promising to expand Canada's rail services.

The message - one that she has focused on throughout her campaign, during visits to Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, PEI, Ontario, Quebec, Manitoba, Alberta and British Columbia - is this is a party with a broad platform and a range of candidates.

More broadly, the platform reflects the values Ms. May has long campaigned for: It is a progressive manifesto featuring reconciliation with Indigenous people, democratic reform, free postsecondary tuition, an expanded public-health-care system and the promise of a guaranteed income to raise Canadians above the poverty line. Saving the environment, in this plan, goes hand in hand with social justice.

In the first year, the party proposes a 21.5per-cent increase in federal spending - a hike worth $74-billion. To pay for the new programs, the Greens would boost tax revenue by about $70-billion in Year 3 of the platform. To get there, the party proposes raising the corporate tax rate from 15 per cent to 21 per cent; applying tax to 100 per cent of capital gains, up from 50 per cent. It would impose a 1-per-cent tax on net wealth more than $20-million, and a 0.5-per-cent tax on financial transactions such as the sale of stocks and bonds.

The Parliamentary Budget Office has cautioned the expected revenue from some of the tax increases is highly uncertain in part because the ideas fall out of the mainstream of public economics. For instance, the PBO said the plan to raise more than $15-billion a year from a financial transactions tax "has not been tried in an open economy before."

The Ottawa-based Institute of Fiscal Studies and Democracy initially awarded the Greens a failing grade for realistic assumptions and transparency, and only upgraded its ratings to a "pass" after a reassessment. It maintains the party earned a "fail" in the category of responsible fiscal management.

Ahead of the election, the Greens looked to be in a close race for third party status with the NDP. With those stakes, the party expected to attract more scrutiny and fire in this race. For a brief period, it hired backroom operative Warren Kinsella - the selfdescribed Prince of Darkness of Canadian politics - to help build the party's "quickresponse capacity." In other words, to prepare the party to fire back when their leader was under attack.

But the appointment proved controversial, and Ms. May announced that his contract was over months before the campaign began.

Once the campaign was on, that quick response plan didn't help avert a string of controversies. Ms. May was on the defensive about weak candidate vetting that has forced them to drop 23 candidates to date (news shared gleefully by NDP activists).

In addition to anti-abortion statements from some candidates, Ms. May has contended with candidate Pierre Nantel's outspoken Quebec nationalist sentiments. One candidate proposed sending a pig carcass to Muslims, and another had a history of anti-Israel remarks.

The party is trying to keep a lid on further eruptions by encouraging candidates to sidestep the debate over Quebec's new law that bans provincial employees in positions of authority from wearing religious symbols.

The Greens officially oppose the law, but Ms.

May will accept dissension on this point within the ranks.

Ms. May is solidly committed to the notion that a caucus of elected Greens would not be whipped on votes in Parliament. She maintains that Greens in other countries have demonstrated that this is perfectly workable.

"This is how Greens operate in countries around the world. ... We make decisions by consensus, we believe in grassroots democracy, so the leader isn't a dictator," she says.

That style of politics has its frustrations, she admits. "The leader of the Green Party is the chief spokesperson. My friends, my real peer group, are leaders of Green parties in other countries around the world, who have the same frustration as I have: We get blamed for everything but we have no power."

Alex Tyrrell, Leader of the Green Party of Quebec, says Ms. May has created problems for the party with her leadership style. "Elizabeth May has brought a centrist style of leadership, trying to strike a balance where there is no balance to be struck," he says. Mr.

Tyrrell says he is constantly having to explain Ms. May's position on abortion (she's pro-choice) and has made it clear that the Quebec wing of the party will not support Bill 21 and discrimination against minorities.

Ms. May, he says, has been ambiguous when she should be an activist.

Indeed, if Canadian voters return a minority government to Parliament on Oct. 21, she says she is prepared to collaborate with any party willing to work toward decarbonizing the economy, a position that has left her open to criticism from all sides.

Ms. May seems unconcerned, stating simply that when it comes to seizing the chance to put the brakes on drastic climate change, "there can be no compromise."

Ms. May's brand is a mix of virtuous ecohero, and personable un-politician.

Sitting in a Calgary café over (fair trade and organic) coffee and a vegetarian buffet lunch, Ms. May is marvelling at the power of a 16-year-old activist to mobilize action who is not held back by the niceties that Ms. May has tried to nurture.

"I think Greta Thunberg is extraordinary.

... She is the most important leader in the world right now on climate," Ms. May says.

"Greta is unforgiving, uncompromising and unsentimental in a way I have never heard in any speaker," she says. "There is a forgiveness in my rhetoric."

Ms. May does share one thing in common with Ms. Thunberg: Both were captured by environmental concerns at a young age. Ms.

May was 13 when she decided that she wanted to be an environmental lawyer.

She was born to a comfortable life in Hartford, Conn., in 1954. Her parents, Stephanie and John, raised their two children on a three-hectare farm with ponies and pet sheep. Elizabeth and her brother, Geoff, attended private school but were largely shunned, as they recall, because of their mother's anti-war and civil-rights activism.

John Middleton May - he took his wife's family name as his middle name as an anniversary gift - was a corporate accountant who logged long hours at work.

Stephanie Middleton May's portrait as a young woman hangs over the dining-room table in Ms. May's apartment. Ms. May proudly recalls that her activist mother was on U.S. president Richard Nixon's enemies list.

Stephanie died in 2003, with donations in lieu of flowers directed to the organization that her daughter was running at the time, the Sierra Club of Canada. Stephanie's obituary describes her as an activist and raconteur. She introduced her daughter to politics in the company of Democrat Senator Eugene McCarthy, the anti-war activist who was Elizabeth May's first hero. (Ms. May would later get into Dalhousie University's law school

with a letter of recommendation from a family friend, the then-governor of Arkansas, Bill Clinton.)

She ran her first campaign in high school - promoting a bill to encourage recycling - and organized her community's first Earth Day celebration on April 22, 1970, when she was 15.

"My mom is the reason my brother and I regard answering a question as dinner theatre," Ms. May explains. (Ms. May has a reputation for long and unscripted answers to questions. Interviewing her brother, Geoff, for this story, it is clear this is a family trait.)

Alongside her environment fervour, Ms.May also sought out religion at a young age.

While her family did not attend church, Ms.May was intrigued by her friend Abigail Kessler's bat mitzvah. At the age of 13, she went to see her friend's father, Rabbi Stanley Kessler, asking to be converted to Judaism.

"He took it very seriously, he was a lovely man who gave great advice, but he questioned me closely. He said, 'I think you have a closer attachment to Jesus Christ than you think you do.' " He encouraged her to look up the church of her grandparents. She followed through, and signed up for confirmation classes in an Episcopal church in rural Connecticut. She became a Sunday school teacher, continuing to teach until her political career consumed her schedule.

The Mays' lives changed dramatically when, in 1973, her parents decided to move to Canada. "With more determination than experience," as Ms. May recalled in her 2014 book, Who We Are, the family bought a restaurant and gift shop in the village of Margaree Harbour on Cape Breton Island, and moved into a one-room log cabin.

"I had not felt good about wealth but I cannot say I enjoyed poverty," Ms. May wrote in her 2014 memoirs. Instead of heading to university, Ms. May served and cooked at the family restaurant in the summer. But winters, once the tourists were gone, offered time to campaign, starting with an effort to stop aerial insecticide spraying over Cape Breton's forests.

Her path to politics wasn't direct. After graduating from law school at Dalhousie in 1983, Ms. May landed a job as a senior policy adviser to Tom McMillan, then-environment minister in Brian Mulroney's Progressive Conservative government, in 1986. This was her first opportunity to learn how government worked from the inside.

Her next move was to take up the post as executive director of the Sierra Club of Canada, a position she would hold from 1989 to 2006.

In that time, she forged lasting bonds with a network of environmentalists, including Vicky Husband, who was heading up the Sierra Club in B.C. at the same time. Ms. Husband says her friend is underrated on the national stage: "She has integrity, and intelligence and a genuine soul. What she does is what she really believes in. There is such an honesty in her."

But Ms. May can be too trusting and open, sometimes: "I have warned her to be a little more careful with people," Ms. Husband said.

"You want to protect her because of the trolls and the nastiness."

Ms. May dove headlong into the bruising political arena in 2006, convinced it was the only way to stop then-prime minister Stephen Harper from threatening Canada's environment. Her first campaign ended in failure, but she was determined to make her own miracle. The Greens searched for the Canadian riding that offered the best chance for a victory. They landed on Saanich-Gulf Islands. Ms. May moved to the other side of the country in 2010 and, in the 2011 federal election, made history as Canada's first Green MP.

Since then, she has built a reputation on Parliament Hill as a workaholic. Her thorough research and understanding of issues - rather than memorizing canned messages - is a key to her solid performance in the leadership debates in this campaign.

But her personal life was lonely. A year ago, at a Green Party convention, one of Ms.

May's friends decided to play matchmaker.

Sylvia Olsen (who is the mother of B.C.

Green MLA Adam Olsen) found herself sitting next to John Kidder, a retired entrepreneur who had founded the B.C. Green Party in the 1980s. Ms. Olsen urged him to ask the federal leader out on a date. He proposed six weeks later and they wed on Earth Day of this year, in an environmentally friendly event for 600 guests.

"I've never been as happy. I adore my daughter, and I never thought anything would make me as happy as being a good mom, but this is my first good relationship and it's fantastic. We're crazy about each other," Ms. May says of her new husband. (She separated from her former partner, Ian Burton, when their daughter was two years old.)

Mr. Kidder, 71, is now running as the Green candidate in the riding where he lives, Mission-Matsqui-Fraser Canyon. On Sept. 11, the couple sat on a bench in a hotel foyer, sharing a set of earbuds, to hear Mr. Trudeau launch the election campaign. They dissected Mr. Trudeau's speech before Ms. May addressed a party rally.

"We don't talk strategy, but we do talk about what the nature of revolutionary change looks like," he says. "We actually have to change the world. It's not a joke, it's the real thing."

Geoff May shares the same urgency and belief his sister can deliver. "She is not interested in politics," he says.

"She is interested in one thing. Her goal since joining the Green Party is the same goal she had when she was a kid - to keep us from destroying the natural world."

This election, he says, is Ms. May's chance to do that. "Short of Jesus coming from the clouds - yes, that would change the world - but short of that, Elizabeth getting elected prime minister of Canada ... could be the change that could make the survival of planet Earth, that miracle, happen."

There is a hint that Ms. May still harbours an ambition to step back from the Green Party in one of its latest television ads. Ms. May, smiling, stands in the middle of a crowd and speaks to the camera: "People think we are a one-person party," she says. The chorus of candidates around her respond, "Not in this election."

There are those who say she has already stayed too long.

Palestinian human-rights lawyer Dimitri Lascaris ran for the Greens in the previous election. He was at the centre of a divisive internal battle in 2016 that led to his expulsion from Ms. May's shadow cabinet. He had successfully brought forward a party resolution supporting sanctions against Israel, over the Leader's objections. Ms. May in that moment demonstrated the limits of her consensus-based leadership style.

"She has been in the leadership position long enough - the party needs renewal," Mr.Lascaris says. "But I would say at a bare minimum, the party should have a result that actually makes it a player in Parliament, something that accords it official party status. If she can't accomplish that much, I think the case for her replacement is absolutely compelling."

No matter the outcome delivered by voters, Ms. May says she sees her happy place - retirement from leadership - on the horizon.

"I am still very happy as the member of Parliament for Saanich and the Gulf Islands," she says. "But I don't think it's healthy for the party for me to be the leader for another [term] - I think it's important for succession planning.

"Win, lose or draw, short of being prime minister, I would hope that before the next election, we can start succession planning."

Associated Graphic

Green Party Leader Elizabeth May arrives for a federal election campaign stop via public transit in Longueuil, Que., earlier this month.



Green Party Leader Elizabeth May shares a laugh at her home in Sidney, B.C., on Thursday. The 2019 election, Ms. May says, is pivotal for the country - and even the planet.

Ms. May leaves her apartment with her dog, Xiomara, on Thursday. 'I don't like politics,' she says, 'and I have always believed no one should stay in a position too long.'

Ms. May is joined by supporters during a rally on Thursday in her riding of Saanich-Gulf Islands. She moved to the West Coast in 2010 and became Canada's first Green MP in 2011.

Albertans have been grappling with hard questions about their traditional industries, the environment and their place in Confederation - but parties have largely written off the province in this election campaign. The West's trust will have to be won no matter who is elected
Saturday, October 12, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A16

TORONTO -- The signs on the edge of Medicine Hat welcome visitors to "The Gas City," a reference to the natural gas that has built and sustained this southeastern Alberta community for more than 100 years.

There are thousands of cityowned natural gas wells popping up out of the ground in local parks, boulevards and farmers' fields stretching into Saskatchewan, which have given Medicine Hat an outsized wealth for a community of about 63,000.

Generations of natural gas revenues have helped build schools, parks, roads and community centres, while keeping local taxes low. But years of rock-bottom gas prices recently prompted the city to announce that most of those wells will soon be shut down, a painful decision that has only deepened the wounds from an economic downturn that has dragged on for the past five years.

Mayor Ted Clugston says thousands of people in the region who work in the oil-and-gas sector have already lost their jobs.

The city's decision will put dozens more out of work, as Medicine Hat comes to terms with the collapse of what was once its main industry. "We are a microcosm of Calgary and a microcosm of the entire province of Alberta," Mr. Clugston said. "It's been a double hit for us."

The prolonged slump in the province's oil-and-gas sector has left tens of thousands of Albertans unemployed, wreaked havoc with the province's finances and inflamed a sense of anger and resentment in a region that has a long history as seeing itself as ignored by the rest of the country. Calls for separation, while still on the political fringes, have become louder as polls show an increasing number of Albertans questioning their place in the country.

Yet, the province's economic challenges have mostly failed to break into the national conversation ahead of the Oct. 21 federal election.

Alberta's place in the campaign has largely been limited to the future of the Trans Mountain oil pipeline expansion, which the Liberals and Conservatives are both pledging to build. But its completion is still years away, and many Albertans have become skeptical the expansion will ever happen.

Economists have warned that even an expanded pipeline won't return the province's economy to what it was before oil and gas prices plunged in 2014 and 2015.

There have also been promises to eventually move Canada permanently off fossil fuels, with varying degrees of urgency, but few concrete ideas about what life in Alberta and other resource-dependent regions will look like when that happens.

And none of the national campaigns have taken seriously complaints in Alberta that federal equalization payments transfer too much of the province's wealth to provinces like Quebec, which opposes pipelines and oil infrastructure.

While Medicine Hat's problems are largely owing to a glut of cheap natural gas in the United States, rather than too few oil pipelines out of the province, Mr.

Clugston draws a direct line between what's happening in the community to Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau. His name still evokes memories of his father Pierre Trudeau's hated National Energy Program of the 1980s.

"You can vote Conservative, but there is a sense of just almost giving up," Mr. Clugston said.

"What does he have to do to get voted out?" Medicine Hat-Cardston-Warner is not in a swing riding - not even close. The Conservative candidate typically wins with as much as 70 per cent of the vote, and the main competitors are largely seen as sacrificial candidates with no real hope of success.

There is a similar lack of suspense in most of Alberta's 34 federal ridings, with pollsters predicting a possible Conservative sweep later this month. That has meant no party has an incentive to spend much time campaigning in Alberta, much less tackle the very real long-term problems facing the province, said Martha Hall Findlay, president of the Canada West Foundation.

"One of the things that makes it so much worse is that you go outside of the West and nobody in any other part of the country has a clue of just how bad it is - and that speaks volumes," said Ms. Hall Findlay, a former Liberal MP.

The main party leaders have barely visited Alberta. Mr. Trudeau was in Edmonton on the second day of the campaign, but hasn't been back. Mr. Scheer has been twice - once each in Calgary and Edmonton.

NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh has yet to campaign in the province and his party hasn't said whether he intends to before election day.

Green Leader Elizabeth May attended a climate protest in Calgary last month, while Maxime Bernier of the People's Party has also been to Calgary.

Ms. Hall Findlay said the sentiment in Alberta is different from the "West wants in" slogans of the eighties and nineties. Many in the province now see the federal focus on climate change as an existential threat that ignores the economic realities of life in Alberta, she said.

"People here are saying, 'We get that, we're working really hard toward finding those solutions,' " Ms. Hall Findlay said.

"To hear that the environment is the issue in this election misses half of the conversation, because it also has to be about the economy ... and that's the frustration."

From 2000 through 2014, Alberta's economy grew by an average of 4.8 per cent a year - more than double the pace of the rest of the country. The province was responsible for 27 per cent of Canada's economic growth in that time, despite having only about 10 per cent of the national population.

Alberta's population was also growing fast, as its booming economy became a magnet for workers from other parts of the country. The province's labour force swelled by almost 750,000, or nearly 50 per cent, in that period. Average weekly wages increased by better than 5 per cent a year. The average price for a detached home rose by nearly 13 per cent a year.

But a lot has changed since the oil market began to collapse in the summer of 2014.

The Alberta economy sank into a two-year recession in the fall of that year, and still hasn't entirely recovered. The province's GDP at the end of last year was 1-per-cent less than where it was at the end of 2014. Alberta's unemployment rate, which was below 5 per cent in 2014, was 6.6 per cent last month - the highest west of Atlantic Canada. Average wages have been essentially flat over the past five years.

Estimates about how many jobs in the oil patch were lost as a direct result of the price crash have varied. A report released earlier this year pegged the number at about 40,000 oil-and-gas jobs gone since 2014.

There were 166,200 Albertans out of work last month, up from 111,400 in September, 2014, when oil prices started to collapse, according to Statistics Canada.

That's still better than the peak in November, 2016, when that figure had ballooned to 225,000.

Some groups continue to hurt more than others. Women actually saw a net gain in employment during the recession, but young men - who could once command lucrative wages in the oil industry with relatively little education - were hit especially hard.

The unemployment rate among men aged 15 to 24 swelled to 19.9 per cent last month, the highest in the country, and up dramatically from 11.3 per cent in September, 2014. But that number doesn't even count young men who have abandoned seeking work entirely or gone back to school, in light of the dismal prospects.

The employment rate - the percentage of the total male population in the age group who have a job, a more complete picture of the total hit taken by Alberta's young male work force - has fallen to 53.7 per cent, from 63.4 per cent in September, 2014.

Young men without a highschool education have fared the worst.

Consumer insolvencies also ramped up during the recession, and have continued climbing since it ended. In August, the number of insolvencies, including bankruptcies and proposals, was 13.4-per-cent higher than a year earlier.

Mortgage arrears are at their highest rate of the past five years, as well. The percentage of mortgages in Alberta with payments overdue by three or more months hit 0.5 per cent in June - the most recent data available for the Canadian Bankers Association - compared with 0.23 per cent across the country. Home prices in Alberta have seen yearover-year declines almost every month for the past two years.

Economists forecast that the Alberta economy will grow by less than 1 per cent in 2019. Some have even suggested the province may have already slipped into mild recession.

Things look a little brighter ahead, with forecasters projecting growth approaching a respectable 2 per cent in each of the next two years. But, as always, a lot depends on the price of oil; even in a weak oil market, the energy sector still accounted for 30 per cent of Alberta's GDP last year.

Despite the slowdown, Alberta's economy also still has a lot to envy.

Its employment rate - the percentage of people aged 15 and older who have a job - is still the highest of any province. So is Alberta's labour participation rate (the share of people who either have a job or are seeking one).

Albertans enjoy the highest incomes in the country - average wages are nearly 15-per-cent above the national average - and the lowest taxes per capita. (The absence of a provincial sales tax is the biggest factor.)

It has the youngest population among the provinces, with a median age four years younger than the national median. Alberta is also one of the country's best-educated provinces: It ranks near the top in percentage of workers with a postsecondary education, and in test scores among high-school students, based on the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA), a global standard.

In other words, Alberta's labour supply is young, skilled and plentiful - all good traits for future prosperity. The trick, economists say, is figuring out how to put that high-quality labour force to work as the oil and gas industry no longer commands their services the way it once did.

University of Calgary economist Trevor Tombe said new pipeline access would clearly help the Alberta economy by

narrowing the price gap, or differential, between the prices oil producers in Alberta receive and the much higher ones in foreign markets.

Constrained pipeline access has depressed Canadian crude prices in recent years as production levels approached export capacity and the industry was left held captive by one market: the United States. The increased reliance on oil-by-rail has also added significantly to transportation costs, which has further weighed on prices. The Alberta government estimated the province was losing $80-million a day when the price differential hit US$50 a barrel last year.

"It's hard to overstate the importance of the pipeline. because that differential does have significant implications for all of the economy," Dr. Tombe said. "In terms of what else the federal government could do, it's not clear because the recession was not a policy-driven event. It was on oil price shock."

Last month, Dr. Tombe published research that attempted to measure how much Alberta's economic downturn has weighed down the national economy. He concluded that if Alberta had kept pace with other provinces, the Canadian economy would be $130-billion larger and the national unemployment rate would be 0.8 percentage points lower.

"We tend to think about provinces too much as isolated entities," he said. "But the economic interconnections between the different parts of Canada are very strong."

While oil prices, and Alberta's economy, have rebounded since the depths of the recession, that recovery has been modest and left many people out entirely.

News of bankruptcies and layoffs in the resource sector is still frequent.

Rory Hale is a recent casualty.

He lost his job as an IT manager at a Calgary-based oil-and-gas firm this past June. He had already been searching for work for much of the previous year, expecting that downsizing and layoffs were coming.

Mr. Hale, 50, assumed his experience in IT would insulate him from the boom-bust cycle of oil and gas, but so far it hasn't helped. "This go around, if I wanted to be insulated from it, I'd probably have to look outside of Alberta to get away from the downturn," he said. "I'm getting a little older with deep roots in Alberta, so that would be a pretty tough move."

Mr. Hale said he views the downturn as "100-per-cent politically driven," and he is deeply suspicious of the Trudeau government, despite its decision to purchase the Trans Mountain pipeline. He said voting Conservative is the only option he's considering.

"It started with the oil price collapse, for sure, but the federal government and the previous [NDP] provincial government are basically trying to kill this industry, in my opinion," he said.

"It's not good for Canada. It's not good for Alberta."

Alberta went through a provincial election this past spring in which Premier Jason Kenney brought his United Conservative Party to power with a campaign that seized on those economic frustrations - and held up Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau as the main cause. Mr. Kenney pointed not only to delays in pipeline construction, but federal environmental legislation he argues represents an attack on the province.

Mr. Kenney has made defeating Mr. Trudeau a key goal. He played host to Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer in Edmonton early in the campaign, and last weekend he visited Ontario's 905 region to campaign for the party. He has also promised to hold a provincial referendum on equalization if several conditions aren't met, including the repeal of recently passed environmental laws, such as Bill C-69, and meaningful reform to the equalization formula.

"I would say the frustration is enormous," Mr. Kenney said in an interview. "We have a sense that we played by the rules, that we've contributed massively to the federation ... And most Albertans, right across the political and demographic spectrum, just feel that that has not been recognized."

Mr. Kenney has accused the Liberal government of stoking a national unity crisis, pointing to several opinion polls, including an Environics Institute survey published earlier this year, that showed more than half of respondents in Alberta said the province would be better off on its own.

He said Mr. Trudeau would have an enormous challenge to confront the mistrust of Albertans if he wins re-election. If the Conservatives win, Mr. Kenney said he will also need to push hard for Alberta's interests, but he sees Mr. Scheer as a natural ally.

"I recall that when Stephen Harper was prime minister, no one was talking about separation in Alberta," said Mr. Kenney, who was a senior cabinet minister in the Harper government. "We didn't get everything we wanted, but fundamentally, we had to sense that the federal government was not working against our fundamental economic interests."

The Premier also warned of a worst-case scenario that has been echoed by other pro-pipeline voices in Alberta: a Liberal minority government that would require support from the NDP or Greens to survive.

"It would take a federal government that's already hostile to our energy industry and make it even more hostile," he said.

While Mr. Kenney has held up recent rumblings about Alberta separatism to sound the alarm about national unity, he's also suggested that many of the people who might tell a pollster they support separation may just be blowing off steam.

The Western separation movement, to the extent that it is a movement, appears to be relatively small.

A group calling itself Wexit -a Brexit-inspired name for Western separation - made waves in February when it put up billboards in Calgary and Edmonton that asked, "Should Alberta Ditch Canada?" The group has been making a similar pitch in Saskatchewan and Manitoba.

Wexit organizers registered as a third-party group in the provincial election under the banner of Alberta Fights Back and raised a little more than $8,000. The group has been holding small events and rallies in Calgary and Red Deer that have attracted a few dozen people.

The group plans to register as a federal political party and wants to run provincial candidates with the goal of eventually holding a referendum on separation. Former Conservative MP Jay Hill has publicly mused about the idea of Western independence, as has Allan Kerpan, a former Reform MP and Saskatchewan Party MLA.

The Alberta Independence Party, which is not formally associated with the Wexit group, received just 0.7 per cent of the vote in the spring election.

Wexit founder Peter Downing said his supporters feel as though the federal government is beholden to Eastern Canadian interests and that Alberta would be more prosperous on its own. He says Alberta is being ignored during the current campaign. "Our vote doesn't count," he said.

Mr. Downing predicted that a Liberal victory would cause the separatist sentiment to explode, and he insists calls for a referendum won't stop even if Mr.

Scheer becomes prime minister.

Liberal candidates in Alberta have been forced to push back against that anger and the perception the party isn't on the side of the oil and gas industry. The Liberals did not have a presence in the province before picking up four seats in 2015, and the party faces the prospect of being wiped off Alberta's electoral map again.

Randy Boissonnault, a Liberal incumbent in the riding of Edmonton-Centre, said there are "4.5-billion reasons" why Albertans should trust the party, a reference to the cost of purchasing the Trans Mountain pipeline. He notes that construction on the expansion project has started in Burnaby, B.C., and crews are mobilizing to get started elsewhere along the route.

When asked why that message isn't getting through, Mr. Boissonnault blames "misinformation from Andrew Scheer and Jason Kenney," and complains that Mr. Trudeau's government isn't getting the credit it deserves.

"There is no political calculus for Justin Trudeau to have bought the pipeline, and yet it's the right thing to do for our country," Mr. Boissonnault said.

The New Democrats face even greater challenges.

The party's lone MP in the province, Linda Duncan, isn't running again, turning her riding of Edmonton-Strathcona into a competitive three-way race with the Liberals and Conservatives.

Across Alberta, the party polls a distant third.

NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh opposes the Trans Mountain pipeline and drew criticism when he recently said he would not impose pipelines on provinces that don't want them running through their territory, such as British Columbia and Quebec, although he insisted that is not the same thing as a veto.

The NDP candidate in Edmonton-Strathcona, Heather McPherson, has instead attempted to align herself with former NDP premier Rachel Notley, whose support for the Trans Mountain expansion put her at odds with the federal party.

"We need to consult with Indigenous people along the line we're trying to build," Ms.McPherson said in an interview.

"We have to get consensus there.

We have to build it."

Back in Medicine Hat, Mayor Clugston says the city is not waiting for any level of government to save it.

The community has attracted several new companies recently, including an Aurora Cannabis facility that will create about 450 permanent jobs and a bitcoin mining operation, Hut 8, that opened last year. On top of the jobs, both operations need substantial amounts of electricity, purchased from the city-owned power utility (which, of course, burns natural gas).

Even Gas City is investing significant cash in renewable energy. There are three windmills towering over the north edge of town. A municipally-owned solar project is shutting down because it was losing money, but the city plans to keep experimenting with the technology.

The city has yet to replace all the jobs that have been lost in oil and gas, and Mr. Clugston acknowledges that in many cases the wages are not as high. But he says there's a cautious sense of optimism.

"The oil and gas [downturn], it's devastating, and those people are having to navigate a transformational shift in their lives," Mr.Clugston said.

"The irony is that this city was founded on cheap natural gas. It has been our history to burn it, from the clay and the brick manufacturing 120 years ago. Now we make electricity out of it, and bitcoin and marijuana."

With reports from Justin Giovannetti in Edmonton and Matt Lundy in Toronto

Associated Graphic

Medicine Hat, its city sign seen at top, is teeming with natural gas wells, but many of them will soon be closed as the city tries to come to terms with the collapse of what was once its main industry. Mayor Ted Clungston, above, says the city is a 'microcosm' of Alberta.


Further job losses are expected in Medicine Hat as the city moves to close many of its natural gas wells, such as the one seen above.

The city of Medicine Hat, its landmark Saamis Tepee and a downtown mural seen above, was once able to build schools and parks with the natural gas revenue it produced, but now Gas City has begun to look at investing in renewable energy after a five-year economic slump.

Reconciliation's reckoning: For Indigenous people in Northern Ontario, election season brings disenchantment and defiance
First Nations, Métis and Inuit voters helped propel Justin Trudeau's Liberals to power in 2015. Now, some feel that his promises of a nation-to-nation relationship haven't been fulfilled - and they're going to say so at the ballot box
Tuesday, October 15, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A10

Past Caribou Island and over the Nipigon River bridge, past the Red Rock Indian Band's hitching post and gas bar, up the Trans-Canada Highway and down a bush road lies Loven Lake.

It is there, about a two-hour drive north of Thunder Bay, that a group of Red Rock members set up camp for the annual moose hunt that will fill their freezers and bellies for the months to come. For this community and others across the country, the fall harvest is under way. Chiefs, elders and youth are out on the land setting traps, fishing, hunting, picking traditional medicines and talking around fires under a twinkling Father Sky.

Joel Haskell's eight-year-old son, Draven, is among the boys at the camp at Loven Lake. "They're getting our kids into our old traditions and back to our roots," said Mr. Haskell, as he stacked logs for his wood-burning stove in the basement of the house he built on the reserve 30 years ago.

Those traditions were forbidden under the Indian Residential School system that forced First Nations children off their reserves and into church-run, government-funded institutions.

That is the truth that was illuminated by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada, which in 2015 released a report detailing the atrocities.

Just as children such as Draven are reconnecting with the culture that the Canadian government worked for decades to eradicate, voters like his father are deliberating which federal party is most fit to govern.

Mr. Haskell was part of the groundswell of First Nations, Métis and Inuit voters that turned out in unprecedented numbers to elect Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau in 2015. Mr. Trudeau rose to power on the promise of a new nation-to-nation relationship and a commitment to reconciliation. The past four years have seen advancements on some Indigenous files, but Mr. Trudeau's term in office is open for criticism. Beyond policy decisions, there have also been questions of character, including as it relates to the high-profile disintegration of Mr. Trudeau's relationship with Canada's first Indigenous attorney-general, Jody Wilson-Raybould, and the release last month of photos showing Mr. Trudeau wearing blackface and brownface. On the latter issue, Mr. Trudeau said he now realizes the makeup was racist and that he was blinded by his privilege. The Liberals have asked Canadians to judge their government on its record.

On Oct. 21, that is what voters will do.

Mr. Haskell gives the current government a failing grade. Mr.Trudeau, he said, has not lived up to his claims to feminism, nor to his pledge to embrace "sunny ways." The Liberals have lost his vote. "There were lots of lies," he said.

Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond, an Indigenous lawyer and former judge who served as B.C.'s children's representative for a decade until stepping down in 2016, said the Liberals' scorecard is not "attractive" at this point. "You can't unwind 140 years of colonialism overnight - I understand that," said Ms. Turpel-Lafond, the director of the Indian Residential School History and Dialogue Centre at the University of British Columbia. "But the entire process never really got going ... Did we just have a post-reconciliation government? I would say we didn't."

In their platforms and public statements leading up to and during the current election campaign, the main parties have all promised some version of a commitment to reconciliation.

The Liberals and NDP say they will end boil-water advisories on reserves by 2021. The Liberals, NDP and Greens all say they will implement the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. The NDP, under Leader Jagmeet Singh, says it will launch a national action plan for reconciliation, and then create a council to oversee it and report to Parliament. The Liberals say they will eliminate tuberculosis in the North by 2030. Elizabeth May's Green Party says it will dismantle the Indian Act, calling the legislation racist and oppressive.

The Conservatives, under Andrew Scheer, say they will review the Indian Act "to remove barriers to prosperity." The party, which had a tense relationship with Indigenous peoples under Stephen Harper's leadership, culminating in the Idle No More movement, says it will pursue resource development in a way that is respectful and economically beneficial to Indigenous communities.

The promises go on and on.

Just as the various political parties have their own definitions and visions, so, too, do Indigenous people.

Ahead of the election, The Globe and Mail interviewed three dozen Indigenous people across the country, asking what reconciliation means to them, whether Canada has made great strides and if reconciliation is even possible.

For Sam Achneepineskum, reconciliation is personal and internal. He was torn from his family on Treaty 9 territory in Northern Ontario and flown south to McIntosh Indian Residential School when he was 11 years old.

There is no role for Ottawa in his healing journey.

For Cindy Blackstock, a childwelfare advocate from B.C.'s Gitxsan First Nation, reconciliation is about the federal government no longer "wilfully and recklessly" discriminating against on-reserve children, as the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal ruled earlier this year.

For Tannis Kasteris, a recently elected band councillor in Fort William First Nation, just across the Kaministiquia River from Thunder Bay, reconciliation is about getting out from under the Indian Act. She wants to be able to actually own the on-reserve home she paid off after 15 years.

For Roxanne Moonias, whose fly-in community of Neskantaga First Nation in Northern Ontario only recently got safe running water after 25 years on a boil-water advisory, reconciliation is about equitable and accessible health care. Every few months, she flies to Thunder Bay and then to Toronto with her four-year-old son Brydon, who needs continuing treatment for a congenital heart condition.

For national Inuit leader Natan Obed, reconciliation is about respecting rights and working together to improve conditions for Indigenous peoples.

And for Fort William elder John Charlie, reconciliation is something totally different. It is meaningless and impossible. "I don't know who came up with the word 'reconciliation,' but we sure as hell didn't," said Mr. Charlie, who works at one of the reserve's gas bars. "The damage that was done to our people is unforgivable, forever." Just recently, a white customer called his niece a "dirty fuckin' Indian." "Those are the things we have to deal with," he said. "And then you want to talk about reconciliation?" Mr. Charlie is among those who told The Globe that they will not vote, either because they do not consider themselves Canadian citizens or because they are disenchanted with, or disinterested in, mainstream politics.

Many others, however, said they will show up at the polls to have their voices heard and to make their power known. "We flipped 21 ridings in the last election," Perry Bellegarde, the National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations, said in a recent interview. Mr. Bellegarde, whose advocacy organization represents 900,000 people and 634 communities, said he hopes First Nations, Métis and Inuit will "rock the vote" again this year.

Still, he understands the tensions at play. "As Indigenous people, we're part of the land and water - we have cycles," said Mr. Bellegarde, a member of Saskatchewan's Little Black Bear First Nation. "It's the fall hunt, for geese, for moose. And then all of a sudden there's this election, and these two worlds colliding.

But we find balance ... We walk in both worlds."

'IS THERE ANYTHING TO BE PROUD OF?' As rain fell over Thunder Bay, a sacred fire burned inside a tepee on the field outside Pope John Paul II Senior Elementary School, which sits on the land of the former St. Joseph's Indian Residential School. It was Orange Shirt Day, an annual event held across the country to acknowledge residential-school survivors and their families.

Dozens of Grade 7 and 8 students emerged from their classes to listen to the speakers and say the Lord's Prayer, which was led by a Catholic priest who had been invited to recite words of healing and comfort. One of the students, 12-year-old Sienna Bouchard, whose grandmother attended residential school, said it is important for people to understand what happened in the past. "It's not fair for different races to be treated differently," the Gull Bay First Nation girl told The Globe.

Sienna is too young to vote in this federal election, or even the next. But her life is affected by the decisions of Canadian governments past and present, and will be in the future. Her sentiments - of understanding and equity - were echoed by adults, albeit in more complicated terms.

After the event, some of the Orange Shirt Day marchers sought reprieve from the weather at the Columbus Centre, where a community lunch of tuna sandwiches, salad and carrot cake was served. Mr. Achneepineskum and members of his family sat around a table, discussing the notion of reconciliation. One of his siblings - Anna Betty Achneepineskum - is running for the NDP in the Thunder Bay-Superior North riding.

"[Politicians] talk a lot about reconciliation, but I don't think they know what that is," said Mr.

Achneepineskum, whose family is from Marten Falls First Nation.

"The most important thing is to reconcile within yourself everything that happened, and to live the life that you were supposed to live."

His sister, Ida Kubitz, who also attended residential school, said she was "anti-white" for decades.

With time and therapy, she worked through her anger and ended up marrying a white man.

To her, reconciliation is not about making amends; no one can right the wrong of a lost childhood.

"For me, reconciliation is about not being angry any more," she said. As a matter of policy or politics, the word "has no real meaning to the people who survived."

Restoring the nation-to-nation relationship is not only about confronting the dark chapter of Canada's residential schools.

There was also the so-called Sixties Scoop, when child-welfare workers across the country removed thousands of Indigenous children from their homes and placed them with non-Indigenous families. There is the vastly disproportionate violence against Indigenous women and girls; earlier this year, the national inquiry tasked with uncovering the systemic reasons for the murders and disappearances concluded that a genocide is taking place in Canada. There is the Indian Act, first enacted in 1876, which stipulates who is "entitled" to be deemed "Indian" and controls many aspects of First Nations people's lives and the reserve system as a whole. The Liberals had planned to move forward with a new Indigenous rights framework that would say the rights of First Nations, Métis and Inuit do not have to be negotiated because they are simply understood to exist. But their plan was not well-received; First Nations leaders attending an AFN policy forum in September, 2018, said the government was moving too fast.

There is the continuing matter of on-reserve child-welfare funding. In 2016, the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal ruled that Ottawa discriminated against tens of thousands of vulnerable First Nations children by providing less money for child-welfare services on reserves than is available elsewhere in Canada. Since then, the Trudeau government has been hit with several non-compliance orders. Earlier this month, it launched a challenge to the tribunal's recent decision on compensation, which would see thousands of children, parents and grandparents receive up to $40,000 each, for an estimated total of around $2-billion.

Ms. Blackstock, the executive director of the First Nations Child and Family Caring Society, which launched the tribunal case with the AFN in 2007, said she was hopeful that when the Liberals took power in 2015, the government might stop fighting the case.

She has been disappointed.

"The tribunal found that Canada's conduct is resulting in the deaths of children in some cases, and in the separation of families in many cases," she said. "We have to ask: Is there anything to be proud of when you've been found to be wilfully and recklessly discriminating against little kids? I don't think so."

Mr. Bellegarde, who voted in a federal election for the first time in 2015, called the Liberals' decision to challenge the tribunal's compensation ruling "beyond unacceptable." But while he would not say how he will cast his ballot on Oct. 21, he said the Liberal government has done more for First Nations people than any that came before it. He pointed to the decline in boil-water advisories, to funding and legislation in support of revitalizing Indigenous languages, and to child-welfare legislation that recognizes Indigenous peoples' inherent right to exercise jurisdiction over child and family services.

All the while, though, there is the gap.

Mr. Bellegarde said Canada as a whole ranks toward the top of the UN Human Development Index, but said First Nations people would place as low as 78th (currently occupied by Venezuela) if the same indicators were applied.

Reconciliation, he said, will only be achieved when the gap is closed - when Indigenous people are no longer "second-class citizens living in third-world conditions."

KNOCKING ON THE DOOR In all her years growing up in Marten Falls, Ms. Achneepineskum never saw federal officials campaign in her community.

And in all the years she has lived in Thunder Bay, she said, the only federal candidate to canvas her home was Patty Hajdu, the Liberal MP elected in 2015. It is no wonder that Ms. Achneepineskum did not participate in provincial or federal elections until about 20 years ago, when she was in her 30s; the mainstream electoral system felt foreign, she said.

Today, she is not only casting a ballot in that system, she is running for a seat in it. Ms. Achneepineskum, who said she has always voted NDP, is looking to oust Ms.

Hajdu, who won the riding with 45 per cent of the vote in the previous election. Thunder Bay-Superior North, which includes the Red Rock Indian Band, is 15 per cent Indigenous, according to calculations recently published by Policy Options.

"At one point in my life, I used to say, 'What's the point in voting?' " Ms. Achneepineskum said in an interview at her campaign headquarters. "I felt invisible. No one came to knock on my door to talk to me. But later on, I realized that I can go and pound on that table. I can go and knock on the door. I don't have to wait for someone to come to me."

Other Indigenous people, it seems, came to a similar realization in 2015, when the gap between on-reserve turnout and off-reserve turnout was the lowest ever recorded by Elections Canada. Compared with the 2011 election, turnout on reserves rose by 14 per cent, reaching an unprecedented 61.5 per cent.

"If you're a political party in this country, you can't afford to overlook Indigenous voters any more," said Max FineDay, a member of Saskatchewan's Sweetgrass First Nation and the executive director of Canadian Roots Exchange, a national non-profit that works with youth to advance reconciliation. "We're a quickly growing community that doesn't have a traditional allegiance to one particular party."

Ms. Achneepineskum, the former deputy grand chief of the Nishnawbe Aski Nation, said she is running to be an MP because she wants to continue fighting systemic racism. And while Mr.

Trudeau "sounded good" and "fancy words were thrown around," she believes the Liberals have left much to the imagination when it comes to reconciliation. "Whatever their definition of the process is, I don't see it," she said.

Her definition hinges on more than ensuring that federal laws are in line with the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, or that First Nations people receive equitable health care, or that the Indian Act is dismantled. "If every community had safe drinking water ... If our corrections systems weren't full of Indigenous people. If we didn't have such high rates of missing and murdered Indigenous women. If they weren't trying to put a pipeline through our traditional territories," she said.

Last year, the Liberal government purchased the Trans Mountain pipeline for $4.5-billion in order to ensure an expansion project would proceed. But the fate of the controversial project, which would triple the volume of crude oil moving from Alberta to B.C., will still be undecided by Election Day. The expansion is yet again facing legal challenges over whether the government adequately consulted with Indigenous groups.

The Liberals' platform says the federal corporate income tax revenue from the Trans Mountain expansion could generate upward of $500-million a year. That money, plus any profit from a future sale of the pipeline, "will be invested in natural climate solutions and clean energy projects that will power our homes, businesses and communities for generations to come," the platform says.

Red Rock Indian Band member Tom Borg has seen the effects of climate change on and around Lake Helen reserve, where the band is located. He used to be able to fish for lake trout right off the shoreline, but the fish have been forced to forage in deeper, colder waters. He blames climate change for the wind storms that cause trees to fall and block his trap line. He blames climate change for the emergence of new species that he said are disrupting the ecosystem.

Earlier this month, Mr. Borg laid out traps for beavers, martens and other animals on a table inside the band's Chalet Lodge.

As a member of the Red Rock trapping committee, Mr. Borg was setting up a display to help youth deepen their understanding of, and connection to, their culture and the land.

On the matter of reconciliation, Mr. Borg said Canada has a long way to go. He is among those who are disenchanted with mainstream politics; his life feels mostly the same whether the Liberals or Conservatives form government. "I just don't believe them any more," he said. "They tell you one thing, and then when they're in power, it never happens."

This past weekend, Mr. Borg's table of traps gave way to a community meal. The Chalet Lodge was the scene of a harvest feast - piping hot moose stew and potluck dishes - and a ceremony to swear in the chief and council who were elected last month.

Shannon Michelle-Ruth, a firsttime councillor, was among those who swore an oath promising not to discriminate against any community member, especially based on their last name or family heritage. As the clouds gathered outside and a storm threatened, an elder laid out four pouches in the four directions and smudged the 50 or so people in the room with smouldering sage.

In an interview in the days leading up to the ceremony, Ms.Michelle-Ruth said she was skeptical that politicians in Ottawa understand the notion of reconciliation. "Us, as native people, we're looking at the government saying, 'What are you reconciling?' Because you're not reconciling the truths we have presented to you," Ms. Michelle-Ruth said.

"All you have to do is look around and see the effects that residential schools have had on us, our parents and our grandparents. It has trickled down to our kids. We feel it here."

Ms. Michelle-Ruth said she has voted in provincial and federal elections ever since she turned 18, and always for the NDP. This year will be no different. Ms. Achneepineskum will get her vote.

Bailey Thompson, 18, has the chance to do the same - to start voting in mainstream politics now that he is of age. But the potential first-time voter has no intention of becoming a first-time voter. He has his moose and his government, he explained. "The only thing I'll vote for," he said, "is chief and council."

With a report from David Jackson, on Lake Helen reserve

Associated Graphic

People march in Thunder Bay on Sept. 30 to mark Orange Shirt Day, which acknowledges residential-school survivors and their families.


Anna Betty Achneepineskum, the NDP's candidate in the Thunder Bay-Superior North riding, says she is running to be an MP because she wants to continue combatting systemic racism.

Bailey Thompson, 18, left, seen with his father, Justin, removing a moose's hide, has the opportunity to vote in his first federal election this month, but is opting to sit out - he says he is content with voting only for his chief and council.

A chosen death, in the nick of time
To give Alzheimer's patient Mary Wilson the death she sought, her physicians had to make a tough decision in a short time - and risked going to prison if they got it wrong. Now, the B.C. medical college's decision on their actions has been made public for the first time. Kelly Grant reports
Saturday, October 12, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A12

The speech pathologist turned to Mary Wilson and gestured toward her husband of 52 years.

"Who's that?" the pathologist asked.

"Oh, that's my Bernie," Ms. Wilson said.

"That's my rock."

"And do you know who that is?" the pathologist continued, pointing at Kira Campbell, one of Ms. Wilson's three devoted children.

Yes, Ms. Wilson said, she knew her daughter.

"Do you have any other kids?" the pathologist asked.

Ms. Wilson paused. Over the past four years, Alzheimer's disease had stripped the 73-year-old of her ability to drive and tell time and read the morning paper, but it had yet not stolen the memory of her children.

"Nope," Ms. Wilson replied.

It had started. She'd forgotten Kira's brother and sister.

The descent into dementia is harrowing under any circumstance, but in Ms. Wilson's case, every lost word or forgotten name was freighted with significance. That summer, in 2017, she was trying to become one of the first patients in Canada - perhaps the first - to be approved for a medically assisted death for Alzheimer's disease. But every mental slip made it less likely that Ms. Wilson, a petite former civil servant with a grey pixie haircut and three university degrees, would have the mental capacity to give informed consent for a medically assisted death.

The situation was equally fraught for the doctors who wanted to help her.

Konia Trouton, a Victoria physician, believed that Ms. Wilson should be eligible to end her life under Canada's assisted-dying legislation. But she also knew that the law, passed by Justin Trudeau's Liberal government in 2016, was vague and open to interpretation and, to her knowledge, hadn't been applied to someone whose only illness was dementia. Some legal experts believed it couldn't be, for two reasons: patients need the mental capacity to provide consent and their death needs to be considered "reasonably foreseeable" (although that term is not clearly defined in the legislation). The law seemed clear enough about excluding dementia patients that even the Alzheimer Society of Canada had been telling clients that they could not get an assisted death.

Dr. Trouton knew that helping Ms. Wilson was risky - and could lead to the loss of her medical licence or worse, a criminal sentence. But she and a team of two other physicians believed their patient met the two contentious requirements: She was grievously ill enough to qualify for an assisted death, but not so far gone she couldn't consent.

So on Oct. 29, 2017 - at Ms. Wilson's apartment in Victoria, with her children and Bernie, her rock, beside her - the doctors took a chance and gave her the death she'd been hoping for.

It was a quiet event that didn't draw attention or make headlines then, but may now have wide-reaching implications for tens of thousands of Canadians in the early stages of dementia.

A confidential decision by the College of Physicians and Surgeons of British Columbia, which spent 10 months investigating the death, has cleared the three doctors of wrongdoing.

While the word of one province's medical regulator is not the same as a judicial precedent, the B.C. College's position is likely to reassure doctors who fear they might lose their licences if they hasten the deaths of willing and mentally capable dementia patients. "One of the reasons [this decision] is so important is because it gives comfort to clinicians," said Jocelyn Downie, a professor in the faculties of law and medicine at Dalhousie University.

"They can see that, okay, the [B.C.] College thinks this is fine."

The B.C. decision is equally likely to horrify opponents of medically assisted death, some of whom worry that pro-assisted-death doctors are pushing the boundaries of Canada's law too far, possibly endangering vulnerable seniors on the knife's edge of competency.

Either way, Canada is at a political crossroads when it comes to who qualifies for medically assisted dying. Last month, a Quebec judge struck down as unconstitutional parts of the federal assisted-dying law and a related Quebec law that seemed - at least on paper - to limit the procedure to the terminally ill. The subject has now become an election issue: Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer has vowed to appeal the Quebec decision, which could make access to assisted death more difficult for those with dementia. Mr. Trudeau, meanwhile, has said that if re-elected, his government would rewrite its own federal law rather than challenge the Quebec ruling - potentially making it easier for those with the condition to access medical assistance in dying, or MAID.

Even before last month's legal developments, the Canadian Association of MAID Assessors and Providers had already published clinical practice guidelines designed to teach other doctors how to work within the bounds of the existing law to assess dementia patients for MAID.

But all of these developments were a long way off in the summer of 2017, when Mary Wilson forgot, for a fleeting moment, that she had two other children.

A 'BEAUTIFULLY TUNED MIND' One day in 2011, Ms. Wilson walked into her Victoria apartment, dropped her keys on the kitchen counter and turned to her husband, Bernie Campbell. "You're in charge of driving from now on," she said.

"I'm a danger on the road because I don't know where I am."

Ms. Wilson never deluded herself, not even in the period before her 2013 diagnosis, when denial was still an option. This level of self-awareness is not always common in patients with dementia - a disease that afflicts 564,000 Canadians - but it was typical of Ms. Wilson. She had a "beautifully tuned mind," her son Ken, now 52, said.

A history buff, Ms. Wilson could rattle off the names and ascension dates of every British monarch back to 1066. She added up long columns of numbers in her head with ease as she tended the family's books.

"The only thing that I do not want to happen," Ms. Wilson told her husband when her neurologist confirmed she had Alzheimer's disease, "is that I do not want to be placed in a home and I do not want to live past the day when I can't recognize you or the kids or my sister and brother.


Mr. Campbell began researching ways to help her end her life.

"I was finding out where I could score fentanyl. I was offering to buy a pistol. We were researching Switzerland," he said, referring to the only country that routinely offers assisted death to foreigners.

The couple watched intently as a unanimous Supreme Court of Canada struck down the Criminal Code ban of the procedure in 2015, and as the Liberal government crafted Bill C-14 to respond to the ruling.

The legislation, enacted on June 17, 2016, did not include a provision for advance requests for assisted dying. If it had, Ms. Wilson could have put her instructions for MAID in writing and asked that they be carried out far in the future, when she was closer to death but no longer mentally capable of making medical decisions.

As the law stood, she feared she wouldn't qualify. But she wanted to find out for sure. In January, 2017, Ms. Wilson's family physician referred her to Stefanie Green, a doctor who now leads the Canadian Association of MAID Assessors and Providers.

DEATH, DEMENTIA AND THE LAW When Mr. Trudeau's newly elected government was drafting Canada's assisted-dying law, a provincial-territorial expert group and a joint committee of the House and Senate both recommended that Canada's new regime permit some form of advance request. But the Liberal government rejected the idea, siding with disability advocates and others who feared an overly permissive law would endanger the vulnerable, and the final legislation required patients to be capable of providing informed consent right up until the moment of their deaths.

Before that moment, two doctors have to conclude independently that applicants have a "grievous and irremediable" medical condition, which the law defines as a "serious and incurable illness, disease or disability" that causes "enduring physical or psychological suffering that is intolerable" and "an advanced state of irreversible decline in capability." Most controversially, the Liberals inserted a clause that went beyond the language in the landmark Supreme Court ruling.

Patients can only be granted an assisted death if "their natural death has become reasonably foreseeable, taking into account all of their medical circumstances, without a prognosis necessarily having been made as to the specific length of time that they have remaining."

The "reasonably foreseeable death" concept puzzled doctors. Many took it to mean that only the terminally ill would qualify, which explains why two-thirds of the 6,749 Canadians who had received an assisted death as of last fall had metastatic cancer. But some physicians felt that approach excluded patients with longer life expectancy who were clearly eligible, a position that gained more traction after an Ontario judge concluded in June, 2017 that A.B., an unnamed 77-year-old woman with severe osteoarthritis whose death was not imminent, met the eligibility criteria.

It was against this evolving and uncertain legal backdrop that Mary Wilson e-mailed Dr. Green with her official application for an assisted death on July 21, 2017.

NOT LONG TO LIVE In many ways, Ms. Wilson's case was an ideal test of whether patients whose only illness was dementia could qualify for MAID.

She was given five-to-seven years to live when diagnosed, meaning that, by 2017, there was a persuasive case to be made that her death was reasonably foreseeable.

In March of that year, her neurologist concluded that she still had the capacity to make medical decisions, despite no longer being able to drive or dress herself without her husband's help.

And although there was plenty of debate among assisted-dying providers about what counted as "an advanced state of irreversible decline in capability," Dr.

Green felt Ms. Wilson satisfied that test of the law, too.

"What would be more advanced," she wrote in her notes, "than being close to losing capacity to make decisions for oneself?" Just as important to Dr. Green, Ms. Wilson had the full-throated support of her husband and three children, including her other daughter, who spoke to The Globe at length but preferred not to be named.

The situation came to a head that July, when Mr. Campbell's heart troubles landed him in hospital and Ken flew to Victoria from his home in Canmore, Alta. He was gobsmacked by how swiftly his mother had declined.

"She certainly remembered everyone," Ken said, "but she had a hell of a time remembering their names."

In a fresh capacity assessment in August, Ms. Wilson's neurologist confirmed she was still capable of making health decisions.

Just because a patient cannot remember that a sock goes on before a shoe, does not mean she is incapable of expressing a choice or appreciating the irreversible consequences of MAID - all things a doctor should look for while assessing for capacity in assisted-death cases, according to the clinical practice guideline that the Canadian Association of MAID Assessors and Providers published in May.

In making that assessment, for example, a doctor might make sure a patient who struggles to find words is still able to recognize that their disease severely affects his or her life. The guidelines advise using yes or no questions, so the physician might ask, "Are you able to wash yourself?" as opposed to "How does your illness impact your daily activities?" Vancouver physician Ellen Wiebe, lead author of the guideline paper, said determining capacity in the moment is easier than predicting when it will evaporate. In the fewer than 15 MAID and dementia cases she has handled (not all of which ended with an assisted death) Dr. Wiebe has followed what some Dutch providers call the "10 minutes-to-midnight approach" and checks in regularly with patients as their decision-making capacity winds down.

"It's really hard," Dr. Wiebe said. "When I tell people it's now or never, that's a horrible thing to do. But I only do it in situations where they asked me to do it."

In Ms. Wilson's case, she still needed a second official assessor of her eligibility for MAID. For that, she turned to Dr. Trouton, an active assisted-dying provider who was no stranger to offering medical care that other doctors might shy away from.

(She and her wife, Dawn Fowler, the nowretired Canadian director of the National Abortion Federation, opened the first abortion clinic on Vancouver Island together.)

When Dr. Trouton met her for the first time at her home on Sept. 8, Ms. Wilson was scattered but still able to demonstrate that she understood the nature of her illness. Ms. Wilson, who by then had turned 74, showed Dr. Trouton old journal entries full of neat paragraphs and flowing penmanship, then flipped to a more recent page. "I can't write properly," Dr. Trouton recalled her saying. She pointed to the television remote. She couldn't remember what it was called or how to use it.

"Very clearly she just said, 'I want to die.

I want this to stop,' "Dr. Trouton recalled.

Similar to Dr. Green, Dr. Trouton felt strongly that Ms. Wilson qualified. But both said their approvals would only be good until the end of October, after which they would insist on reassessing Ms. Wilson to ensure she hadn't lost capacity.

Only one obstacle remained: The lawyers.

The Canadian Medical Protective Association, the legal group for doctors that Dr.

Green enlisted for advice, declined to comment on Ms. Wilson's case and the doctor declined to share the written legal opinion she received. But Dr. Green's notes in Ms.Wilson's file (shared with Mr. Campbell's permission) make plain the effect of the advice.

"I have decided that I will not assist Mary in her application for MAID," Dr. Green wrote on Sept. 22, 2017. "To be clear, I believe she's eligible and qualifies ... I also recognize that several interpretations of the law have not yet been tested in court and that if I am incorrect in my interpretation it carries the risk of prosecution and imprisonment."

Dr. Green said she felt like a coward. "I wasn't sure they were going to find someone who was going to help them," she said.

Mr. Campbell panicked and contacted the only other person he thought might help. "I sent up a little prayer: Please let Konia say yes."

Up until that point, Dr. Trouton had only been involved in her capacity as an assessor, but now the family was hoping she would be the one to do the procedure. As she weighed her decision, she thought of her father-in-law, reduced by Lewy Body disease, another cause of dementia, to a shell of his old self before his death in 2016.

She assessed Ms. Wilson in person twice more, recording both encounters on an iPad so she could review them if need be.

She was confident Ms. Wilson qualified.

"If I'm committed to MAID," she said to herself, "Then I should be committed to doing this case."

Paul Pereira, a Victoria physician who had cared for the couple for more than a decade, provided the crucial final assessment of Ms. Wilson's eligibility.

"It's funny," Dr. Pereira said. "I had a little bit of anxiety, but I felt pretty good about it. I really felt that Mary was a unique and good case for this."

On Oct. 29, 2017, the day of her death, Ms. Wilson, Mr. Campbell and their children went out for a last morning coffee and a stroll along the walkway at Turkey Head point. In the afternoon, Ms. Wilson's sister and brother and their spouses joined them.

When Dr. Trouton arrived, she led Ms.Wilson into her bedroom. The two were alone, except for a volunteer from the advocacy group Dying with Dignity Canada who had come to act as a writing proxy for Ms. Wilson. She could no longer sign her own name.

"What do you think we're doing today," Dr. Trouton said, recalling their conversation.

"This is the day I'm going to die," Ms.Wilson replied.

"Do you want to go ahead with your assisted dying today?" "Yes, absolutely."

THE FINAL PROGNOSIS Dr. Trouton was not surprised when a butter-coloured envelope from the College of Physicians and Surgeons of British Columbia landed at her office on Feb. 5, 2018, announcing that she, Dr. Pereira and the neurologist (whom The Globe was unable to reach) were under investigation for their role in Ms. Wilson's death.

She figured it was only a matter of time before the B.C. Coroners Service - which reviewed all MAID deaths in the province until last fall, when Health Canada adopted a national monitoring system - sent Ms.

Wilson's case to the regulator for a deeper look at whether her Alzheimer's disease satisfied every requirement of the "grievous and irremediable" test.

Ten months later, the College concluded that the doctor and her two colleagues had gotten it right. Their conduct had been, "consistent with the current legislation [and] relevant College standards," and they had taken a, "thoughtful and conscientious approach to this unique clinical scenario."

Dr. Green, who has since gone on to provide assisted death in a dementia case, called the decision, "groundbreaking."

Heidi Oetter, the registrar of the B.C.

College was much more circumspect. She stressed that interpreting the Criminal Code is the job of the courts, not medical regulators; their decisions are not precedents.

The B.C. College never released the results of the investigation into Mary Wilson's death, Dr. Oetter explained, because it did not lead to a formal disciplinary hearing. That's the only circumstance under which the College is allowed by law to publicly acknowledge the existence of an inquiry.

As long as that privacy rule stands, patients, the broader medical community and those who worry that Canada's assisted-dying program may have gone too far all have little way of knowing just how far it has already gone.

"I'm not romanticizing Alzheimer's. I'm aware of the devastating nature of the disease," said Trudo Lemmens, a professor of law and bioethics at the University of Toronto.

"At the same time, I find it worrisome that we try to focus on ending the life of people with Alzheimer's, rather than improving quality of life [and] reducing the suffering of people undergoing cognitive decline."

On the other side of that debate are eligible Canadians with dementia who would prefer to die with the help of doctor - some of whom may have lost the capacity to make that choice in the nearly two years since Ms. Wilson emerged from her bedroom to say a final goodbye to the people she loved most.

"Three times I could tell she really wanted to say something to people, you know?

Just some touching way of saying goodbye," her son Ken said. "She was able to chat with people one on one, but when everyone was looking at her, she had no script.

"I think the third time she just felt like anything she could say was inadequate.

She just shrugged and looked around went, 'Oh well, I just can't find words.

Goodbye.' And smiled. And looked at the doctor, and said, 'I'm ready.' "

Associated Graphic

Dr. Konia Trouton, top, and Dr. Stefanie Green, above, both believed that Mary Wilson qualified for medical assistance in dying, or MAID. Of Ms. Wilson, Dr. Trouton says she said to herself, 'If I'm committed to MAID, then I should be committed to doing this case.'


On the last day of Ms. Wilson's life, the Wilson family, top, went out for a morning coffee and a stroll before being joined by her siblings and their spouses at home, middle. Bernie Campbell, Ms. Wilson's husband, above, says that once she had decided she was going to end her life, he began researching ways to help her achieve that. 'I was finding out where I could score fentanyl. I was offering to buy a pistol. We were researching Switzerland,' he said.


Criticized by the left and right over issues such as climate change and trade, Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau tries to find a centrist path to re-election
Wednesday, October 16, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A1

This is not what the end of Justin Trudeau's first term was supposed to look like.

When the Liberal Leader soared to power four years ago, even his political rivals generally assumed that it was the start of a long and comfortable reign; that a second mandate was all but a foregone conclusion.

Mr. Trudeau and the people around him envisioned something bigger and better than that. He was ushering in a newly positive, anything-is-possible era in which collective purpose transcended partisan division. He was going to strengthen this country's sense of self, serving as the youthful and charismatic embodiment of its progressive values. He was going to offer generational leadership that put Canada at the forefront of tackling the most confounding issues of our time, from mounting economic inequality to the tensions around mass migration to climate change.

Now, fighting for his political life, Mr. Trudeau has mostly traded in his soaring rhetoric for a very well-worn Liberal message, about the perils of returning the Conservatives to power and the need for voters to rally behind his party to stop them.

It's a crashing to Earth that was well under way before this strange fall election campaign; before people who had admired Mr. Trudeau for his modern sensitivities were forced to reckon with images of him in blackface.

Mr. Trudeau bears much responsibility for disillusionment with him, and not just because he set expectations at a sky-high level that he was never going to meet.

At times, most notably anything and everything around the SNC-Lavalin affair, he has committed unforced errors that made a mockery of his promise to do politics differently.

But there is a lot else at play here, too, and it needs to be acknowledged by anyone trying to fairly appraise whether Mr. Trudeau has governed well enough to deserve a second term.

A Prime Minister who briefly seemed to have great leeway to implement his political vision has turned out to be a man in the middle of forces that are largely beyond his control.

Those forces have been global: the crumbling of the liberal international order, the rise of a nationalist U.S. President who forced Mr. Trudeau to devote much of his attention to preserving the status quo in Canada-U.S. trade.

Not to mention the feud between the world's two superpowers, which Canada found itself caught between when it followed its legal responsibility to act on a U.S. arrest warrant for an executive from Huawei, the Chinese telecommunications giant.

They have been demographic, with a growing gap in the sensibilities of baby boomers seeking stability and millennials increasingly worried about the very future of the planet.

They have been regional, with Western alienation spiking sharply and Quebec veering in new nationalist directions. They have been cultural, with communication and consumption in the social-media age rewarding the loudest voices on the left and right, often giving the impression that a pragmatic prime minister is incapable of pleasing anyone.

They might have thrown anyone in his job for a loop, and turned whatever exactly that person promised four years ago into a distant memory.

To judge Mr. Trudeau through the rosy lens of 2015, then, is to ignore the real world in which he has been governing.

The more confounding question is whether he has taken the opportunities he has actually had to advance his priorities, and whether he has reacted sufficiently to the many unexpected challenges that have arisen.

And that leaves voters to consider whether they can live with the sort of modern centrism that Mr.

Trudeau has attempted, while being stuck in the middle, even if it's not quite most people's ideal.

If there was one moment in this fall's campaign that encapsulated the balancing act Mr. Trudeau has tried to walk, it was when he marched among hundreds of thousands of climate strikers in Montreal. For his trouble, he was heckled by activists there, while skeptics of the need for aggressive policy to curb carbon emissions snickered from afar.

Although certainly a live issue four years ago, climate change could then be afforded relative few lines in the Liberal platform. And it wasn't a source of great controversy that Mr. Trudeau vaguely promised to "provide national leadership and join with the provinces and territories to take action on climate action, put a price on carbon, and reduce carbon pollution."

Nor that he expressed support for the expansion of the Trans Mountain pipeline, to get more of Alberta's oil to port in British Columbia, promoting that and carbon taxation as a trade-off.

Since then, the seemingly consensus-oriented position that Mr. Trudeau is occupying on the matter of carbon-emission reduction has become lonelier, amid two increasingly polarized sides.

Among progressives, particularly younger ones, it has become a matter of vastly more urgency than it was a short time ago.

With the United Nations climate-change panel warning that the world must dramatically cut emissions over the next decade to avoid irreversible catastrophe, and Canada having one of the world's highest per-capita emissions rates, any support whatsoever for more oil extraction is increasingly treated by activists as a dealbreaker.

Among conservatives, opposing carbon pricing has become more an article of faith than it was four years ago, after the election of stridently anti-tax premiers in Alberta, Ontario and New Brunswick, playing primarily to older voters suspicious of having to shell out more at gas pumps.

More than just that, the oil and gas sector's current challenges (owing partly to low global prices), and a creeping awareness of how much worse things might get for that industry in a lowemissions world, has made for an increasingly angry response out of Alberta to anything but fullthroated support.

To further complicate matters, the United States has gone from a president roughly aligned with Mr.

Trudeau on climate policy, in Barack Obama, to a climate-change denier in Donald Trump. That points to either the need for Canada to show more leadership on the issue or to the futility of doing so, depending on one's perspective.

Viewed through a generous lens, Mr. Trudeau has carved out a sort of muscular moderation on the issue, setting a path for Canada to gradually transition away from fossil-fuel reliance without causing excessive short-term pain.

He can credibly claim to have by far the most aggressive climate-change plan that any federal government in this country has offered.

In addition to the imposition of a national carbon price (which Ottawa collects through a carbon tax, then returns to taxpayers through other means, in provinces that don't impose their own), his measures have included the development of a new clean-fuel standard requiring gasoline to be less carbon intensive, the mandated closing of remaining coal-fired power plants and new methane regulations.

He can also push back against any suggestions that he has abandoned the resource sector by virtue of not just maintaining his support for Trans Mountain, but having Ottawa purchase it for a whopping $4.5-billion when Kinder Morgan, which previously owned it, suspended expansion plans after delays.

But if Mr. Trudeau was expecting thanks from either side, he was sorely mistaken.

He has at times not helped his own cause in earning trust.

Albertans seized, unsurprisingly, on comments by Mr. Trudeau in Ontario in 2017, when he talked about the need to "phase out" the oil sands - arguably an accurate reflection of long-term plans, but unhelpfully blunt at the least.

More substantively, Trans Mountain development was halted in 2018 because of a Federal Court of Appeal ruling that Ottawa had failed to meet its obligations to consult affected First Nations, and had fallen short in environmental assessments.

The more overarching challenge, though, is that he hasn't really given either side what it wants.

The resource industry and its allies are unsatisfied that Mr. Trudeau's government approved only one of the three major pipeline projects that were in place when it took office. And they take umbrage at other regulatory measures Ottawa has imposed, including legislation to ban oil tankers on B.C.'s northern coast and to set tougher environmentalassessment standards. Meanwhile, those who demand urgent action on climate change are frustrated that - partly because of continued oil sands support, as well as carbon pricing and other measures being ramped up fairly slowly - Canada is still not on pace to meet its emissions-reductions targets under the Paris Agreement.

Mr. Trudeau's hope, politically, is that while social media and other public discourse make it appear that he's in an untenable position, pleasing no one when it comes to steering a resource-reliant economy toward serious climate policy, he's actually appealing to a large swath of Canadians who quietly prioritize moderation.

That would align with what was once a winning formula for Liberals: noisy opposition from both their left and right helping persuade many voters that they were the reasonable ones. And maybe, with more of that noise than ever, such middle ground looks especially appealing.

Or maybe it's too uneasy a fit in the current, polarized political world; even those who aren't firmly on one side or the other of this debate may only see chaos, and figure someone else couldn't do much worse.

It comes back to whether Mr. Trudeau is seen to have done as well as can reasonably be expected, with the space available to him in the middle of the squeeze. And that applies, to varying degrees, to most of the other big policy issues he has tried to navigate, too.

There are a few ways in which Mr. Trudeau has clearly used the space available to him to effect meaningful and lasting change, evidenced by would-be successors having no intention of reversing major policy decisions.

The most obvious positive example of that is a campaign promise that his government was able to implement rather quickly and easily: a reworking of several pre-existing support payments for parents into the new Canada Child Benefit, which directs more money to families with modest incomes and has helped get hundreds of thousands of people out of poverty. And to some extent, other changes to benefits programs, such as an expansion to the Canada Pension Plan negotiated with the provinces, also fit that bill.

The legalization of cannabis arguably qualifies, too. It was more contentious, and the creation of a legal market has been somewhat tortuous. But it is a bold change that was important to some of Mr. Trudeau's younger supporters, that his older ones could seemingly live with, and that is now here to stay.

His government has also had abject failures, first among them the abandonment of his promise that the 2015 election would be the final one contested under the first-past-thepost system. That's not something that can be blamed on outside forces: Mr. Trudeau could have advanced electoral reform if he wanted, albeit over the objections of some nervous members of his caucus. Instead, he botched and then aborted the process in a way that may have dissuaded subsequent governments from taking it up, and alienated a fair number of his younger supporters in the process.

And on broken promises, there is no getting around his choice to run much larger and more lasting deficits than he said he would in 2015. It's one major way in which he has veered away from the centre, with a significant left turn. His political calculus seems to be that there is currently broad acceptability for it, and that it's a necessary tradeoff in order to avoid breaking other commitments around spending and tax policy that would hurt more.

But in most other policy areas, Mr. Trudeau has gone less neatly in one direction or another - and rarely has his balancing act led many people to be fully satisfied.

His attempts to get the wealthiest Canadians to pay more tax is one of the areas where harsh political realities have forced the most compromises.

While cutting middle-income tax rates, his government did increase the rate on personal income above $200,000, and ended income splitting, which allowed higher earners to save money by transferring reported income to their spouses. But it significantly watered down a package of tax changes aimed at taking away various tax sheltering mechanisms, after an outcry from doctors, small-business owners and others with sympathetic audiences. And late in their term, foreign pres-sures - in the form of Mr. Trump's massive corporate tax cuts - prompted the Liberals to announce billions of dollars in business tax breaks to try to preserve competitiveness.

In his government's relationship with Indigenous populations, about which there was great optimism when Mr. Trudeau entered office, there has been progress in improving access to basic human needs, most notably clean drinking water. But this month, the government launched a challenge to a Canadian Human Rights Tribunal ruling requiring about $2-billion in federal dollars to make up for shortfalls in funding for First Nations child welfare.

That could possibly be a punt until the election is over, but it's perceived as the latest among many signals that Mr. Trudeau's government isn't prioritizing such spending to the extent it once seemed to promise. Meanwhile, it has moved sympathetically but more slowly than Mr. Trudeau's earlier campaign rhetoric suggested on the "nation-to-nation" reconciliation over the continuing legacy of residential schools, and other past abuses. It's another defining policy area that Mr. Trudeau has taken more seriously than past prime ministers, but in a more compromised way than he once imagined.

On migration policy, Mr. Trudeau more or less managed through much of his mandate to deliver the liberal approach he had promised, quickly making good on his pledge to welcome tens of thousands of Syrian refugees, and significantly increasing immigration levels. But then his Liberals plainly struggled with how to reconcile their values with unforeseen events, in the form of a surge in asylum seekers at unauthorized points of entry from the United States in the wake of Mr. Trump's election.

After initially striking a relatively welcoming tone, and then resisting calls for a crackdown, Mr. Trudeau this year shifted to a harder line that could see such border-crossers denied access to full refugee hearings - an apparent reflection of concern about breathing life into the sort of populist backlash against migrants recently experienced through much of the rest of the Western world.

It's been a similar story on matters more symbolic. Mr. Trudeau's configuration of his cabinet sent important signals by setting a precedent of gender parity, featuring a heretofore unusual degree of ethnic diversity, and quickly elevating to positions of power genuine outsiders to Ottawa.

But it became clear that what he expected from some of those ministers and how they viewed their jobs did not align - culminating in opposite signals being sent by the demotion and subsequent ouster from caucus of Jody Wilson-Raybould, who had been the country's first Indigenous attorney-general.

And there has been Mr. Trudeau's recent handling of Bill 21, the Quebec legislation that bans teachers, police officers and other public employees in that province from wearing religious symbols while working. With pluralism at the heart of his political identity, Mr. Trudeau might once have been expected to strike the toughest possible line against a law that affects a couple of minority groups, Muslims and Sikhs, in particular. Instead, while expressing his disagreement with it, he has hedged on whether his government would intervene in a court challenge, landing on a line that he will merely keep that option open.

But then, that's still further toward a possible intervention than any of the other leaders of major federal parties have promised this campaign, despite all of them saying they disagree with the law.

Like Mr. Trudeau, they plainly are trying to straddle between public opinion elsewhere in the country, which seems generally negative toward Quebec's law, and public opinion within that province, where the law has strong support.

And that serves as a useful reminder of the extent to which anyone serving in the country's top job is likely to be defined largely by their response to forces that aren't fully within their control.

At the outset, nobody would have predicted that a large chunk of Mr. Trudeau's term would be dominated by renegotiating the North America freetrade agreement.

Reviews of how the Liberals handled those volatile talks were generally positive. And the end result - a new deal, still pending ratification, with fairly minor tweaks from the previous one - was probably about as well as Canada could reasonably expect to emerge from the situation.

But the bandwidth his government devoted to that file, with Mr. Trudeau and his top staff spending much of their time on it, affected its performance in other ways. Distraction and fatigue seemed to contribute to the terrible decision-making leading up to the SNC-Lavalin affair breaking open. And other policy ambitions Mr. Trudeau could have been pursuing, the sort he campaigned on last time, didn't get as much focus as they otherwise would have.

Although the impact would have manifested in different ways under a different prime minister, anyone in that office would have been similarly consumed by suddenly having to deal with Mr.


And to look at the chaotic state of the world outside Canada's borders - and the volatile political, economic, cultural, demographic and regional dynamics currently at play here - is to know that whoever holds power after this election probably won't get as much time or space as they would like to focus on their preferred issues, either.

But that doesn't make prime ministers purely hostages of fortune, compelled to only be reactive. They have agency, are tested and are set apart from the alternatives by how they use the available space they have.

Some prime ministers might choose to focus on a small number of things they think they can focus on under those circumstances, and set aside the rest. Others might see opportunities to firmly pick sides among the colliding forces that are outside their control - to decide whether being the champion of young or old, East or West, left or right allows them to advance something they believe in.

Mr. Trudeau has tried to navigate between those forces, while continuing to try to tackle a wide range of policy priorities, with evidently mixed success.

Canada is further along toward addressing everything from inequality to climate change to reconciliation than it was four years ago, but not as far as many might wish.

It feels more divided than four years ago, too, but perhaps less so than it would if someone else had been in office.

It has maintained its standing in the world at a time of enormous global volatility, but not elevated it the way that Mr. Trudeau seemed capable of, at the outset.

He is no longer an avatar for all that Canadians might want to see in their country and its future.

But he was never going to be that, once he got down to the work of governing.

The question is whether enough voters can live with what he is, or would prefer to see how someone else navigates the centre of the storm.

Associated Graphic

Justin Trudeau greets Liberal supporters in Windsor, Ont., last month. FRED LUM/THE GLOBE AND MAIL

Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau speaks at a campaign event in candidate Katie Omstead's riding of Chatham-KentLeamington.


Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau reads to elementary-school students at the Blessed Sacrament Elementary School in London, Ont., last month.


Hockey, baseball and buzzwords
Rogers Media's new boss talks a good game. But does Jordan Banks have the answers? Susan Krashinsky Robertson and Andrew Willis report
Saturday, October 12, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1

When Rogers Communications Inc. hired Jordan Banks as the new president of its media division this summer, it was not just announcing new leadership. It was sending a message.

The symbolism was clear. On the way out was a seasoned broadcaster, Rick Brace, who first went into the television business more than 40 years ago and had been pulled out of retirement to take the job in 2015. On the way in was a former eBay Inc.

and Facebook Inc. executive, a generation younger, with long experience in technology and e-commerce but virtually none in the worlds of TV and radio.

Whether the 51-year-old Mr.

Banks has what it takes to modernize the media business Ted Rogers built is very much an open question.

What's not in dispute is that it's already in a state of some turmoil. In the past year it has jettisoned some high-profile (and expensive) personalities at Sportsnet, cancelled the traditional "up-front" presentation for advertisers in a cost-cutting move, sold off its publishing business for loose change, and seen the exit of the last of the executives who negotiated its blockbuster $5.2-billion, 12-year rights deal with the National Hockey League.

The latter remains the centrepiece of the challenges Mr. Banks is taking on - a pricey, uncertain deal that was signed even as the TV audiences were splintering and consumers were changing the way they watch and pay for sports. The NHL contract is a treadmill that keeps picking up speed: The cost of the rights escalates over the term of the contract.

That means the company must boost hockey revenues to keep pace with costs. While the NHL contract helped make Rogers Media a larger business - revenues last year were nearly $2.2-billion, up from $1.7-billion in 2013 - the division doesn't earn a lot more now that it did then.

Advertising is part of the problem. Consider the sheer number of advertisements on Sportsnet and Citytv that are for other Rogers products or are public-service ads, such as those against drunk driving.

Those are spots that haven't been sold. Advertising dollars have steadily flowed out of all forms of conventional media and toward digital players, particularly Google and Facebook, Mr. Banks's former employer.

In effect, people like Mr. Banks were part of the problem for Old Media companies such as Rogers. Does he have any solutions?

"Rogers clearly has incredible assets and properties that need to be rethought," Mr. Banks says. In his first interview since taking the job, Mr. Banks discussed the company's plans for streaming, his view of the NHL deal and his firm belief that the media business is not broken.

"We are rethinking how to be more relevant, more often, to more people in Canada," he says, "acknowledging that the digital transformation that we are in the middle of is profound."

But Mr. Banks seems unwilling to acknowledge that this transformation has left Rogers on the back foot. In fact, during a lengthy conversation at Rogers headquarters in Toronto, he even denies that digital giants such as Facebook have amassed more market power than his new employer.

This astonishing claim comes just after he has finished diagramming the business model of Rogers Media in a rather analog way: taking a marker to a large paper pad in the corner of the room. The upside-down pyramid he draws lays out the basic arithmetic of media: win customers' attention, and you make money on advertising (and in the case of streaming or cable TV packages, through subscriptions). The problem of course, is that consumer attention is more divided than ever - with competition from digital giants whose market dominance far outstrips Rogers's.

"I would respectfully disagree, a little bit, on that," he replies.

Why? Rogers's local presence is "stronger than any global platform," he argues, thanks to its radio stations in more than two dozen markets, Rogers TV and Citytv stations.

BET ON SPORTS Mr. Banks's second reason for being so bullish is a hectic, anxiety-ridden world that drives people toward entertainment consumed socially - in other words, sports.

"We own sports in this country," he boasts. "I can't imagine a better mix of sports rights exists anywhere."

Ever since the NHL deal, Rogers has been on a years-long mission to focus its media strategy on sports.

"Now we have sold off the publishing business, what you see in our media business is sports.

That continues to have very good top line growth," said Anthony Staffieri, Rogers's chief financial officer, at a recent BMO Capital Markets conference.

The idea is that sports is one of the few programs people feel the need to watch live, which helps protect TV ad revenue. And it's content that people will pay for, in subscriptions.

Indeed, Sportsnet has been able to charge more for TV subscriptions - even while, like many specialty television services, it has been shedding subscribers.

In 2017, the number of Sportsnet subscribers fell by more than 7 per cent to 7.5 million, while subscriber revenue grew almost 4 per cent to $293.4-million, according to numbers submitted to the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC). Subscriber numbers declined again last year, to less than 7.2 million, while subscriber revenue grew another 10 per cent to $323.7-million. (Those numbers reflect only the flagship Sportsnet channel.)

Because Rogers does not break out results for its Sportsnet Now streaming service, it's hard to know how many of those subscribers are migrating from cable TV owned by Rogers to streaming owned by Rogers. What is clear, however, is that the TV subscribers who are left, are paying more. The question is how long Rogers will be able to push prices higher in an era of cable cord-cutting.

The media group's top line sales are expected to grow at a 2-per-cent to 3-per-cent annual clip, according to Mr. Staffieri, an improvement over revenues that were flat over the past 12 months.

At the same time, Rogers is taking the axe to costs, including saying goodbye to high-priced athletes and TV and radio hosts. That is expected to boost profit margins.

The Blue Jays, for example, lost 95 games this year and finished near the bottom of the league.

The Jays traded several of their top-paid players, including fielder Kevin Pillar, who made US$5.8-million, and pitcher Marcus Stroman, who earned US$7.4-million.

Financially, the season was a success. Rogers Media's all-important earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) rose by $12-million to $72-million in the most recent quarter. The group's EBITDA margin increased to 12.2 per cent from 9.9 per cent, a jump that analyst Drew McReynolds at RBC Dominion Securities Inc. said was "primarily due to lower Blue Jays salaries."

Mr. Banks says he believes Rogers Media is protected in these down periods by a fan base that is loyal.

"What I love about this business is, you have this core group ... that good times and bad, will listen to the FAN, will watch Leafs games, will go watch the Blue Jays," he says.

Still, there were more than a few empty seats at the Rogers Centre this year. Mr. Banks acknowledges that "winning is a crucial accelerant" to attracting less-rabid fans who may go dormant when teams don't perform. Asked whether that means more investment in Blue Jays salaries, he says only, "I think the entire Rogers organization is interested in winning at everything we do."

Part of coping with change is also making media assets more personalized, Mr. Banks says. He'd like to see Rogers offering more services to sports fans such as sending alerts to their phones with highlights when a favourite player scores a goal, or providing more information to help them manage their fantasy leagues.

In his research note, Mr. McReynolds pointed out that management expected EBITDA to grow further this year, "driven by continued cost efficiencies."

As the analyst wrote these words, Rogers let go hockey commentators Nick Kypreos, Doug Maclean, and John Shannon and high-profile radio broadcaster Bob McCown, who was one of the country's best-paid media personalities, earning more than $1-million a year.

In one of many examples of Rogers Media trying to do more with less, Mr. McCown will be replaced on Monday by hosts Tim Micallef and Sid Seixeiro, who will do double duty as hosts of both the company's national drive-home radio show and the Tim & Sid TV show on Sportsnet.

"What happened over the summer, I think, was a terrific job done by my predecessor, Rick, to make sure that we acknowledge things are changing and we need to change with them," Mr. Banks says. "... I'm the beneficiary of that. I'd be lying to you if I said that that wasn't a consideration of me taking the role. If this was a total turnaround, I wouldn't have been so interested."

HOCKEY BUSINESS The success of Rogers's sports-media strategy hangs on the massive NHL-rights deal - "the greatest sports rights in Canada," Mr. Banks says - which is now at the halfway mark with six seasons to go.

When asked whether Rogers is making money on the deal, Mr. Banks says that three weeks into the job he isn't sure. "I haven't dug deep enough to figure out from an accounting perspective," he says.

Sportsnet president Bart Yabsley isn't saying either. "It's a great deal for us. We're really happy with it."

Hockey has pushed revenue sharply higher for Rogers Media, but the division's profits have followed more modestly. In 2013, the year before the hockey deal kicked in, Rogers Media reported revenue of $1.70-billion and adjusted operating profit of $161-million. In 2018, revenue was $2.17-billion and adjusted EBITDA (the profit measure it currently discloses) was $196-million.

While Rogers wants its radio and TV stations to make money, their contribution to the company's bottom line is minimal. However, Rogers is hoping for success in sports translating into increased awareness and loyalty from owners of its cell phones and internet services.

"Sports sponsorship can enhance customer stickiness and loyalty," said June Cotte, a professor who teaches marketing at Western University's Ivey Business School.

Linking the Maple Leafs, Raptors, Toronto FC and Blue Jays to sports stations and cell phone and cable marketing campaigns makes sense to analysts, but it is harder to make a case for continuing to own traditional broadcasters such as Citytv. "I think investors understand how media assets with a direct association to sports can complement the legacy network business. It's less clear how City fits into the thesis, particularly given the secular challenges facing conventional television," said Tim Casey, an analyst at BMO Capital Markets. He added: "Radio, while small, does support the Rogers brand from a promotional perspective and it does have attractive free cash flow conversion."

But not everyone is convinced TV and radio networks that rely on hockey and other pro sports can continue to prosper.

"We're bearish on sports leverage. We think sports rights fees are rising at a seven per cent compound annual growth rate and could go higher in the next round of resets. It's tough to imagine revenue growth can match that," Steven Cahall, media analyst at investment bank Wells Fargo Securities LLC, said in a recent report on U.S. broadcasters.

"We believe the leagues will continue to cannibalize viewership with OTT [over-the-top, a term for digital audio and video streaming] and digital deals."

However, Mr. Banks says Rogers will not have to worry about the price of rights for another six seasons, and that the company is "delighted" with the NHL contract.

"Knowing what I know now, would I do that deal again? I'd do that deal again all day till Sunday," he says.

When the Toronto Maple Leafs were eliminated in the first round of the NHL playoffs last spring, Rogers saw postseason audience numbers fall.

That's important because advertising revenue fluctuates with audience numbers - and a good season can have reverberations, helping to sell advertising in the following year. Mr. Banks is hoping for a different result in this year's postseason. He cites the Raptors' playoff run as a perfect example of what winning can do. (Rogers holds half of the Raptors' broadcast rights.)

"The Raptors win the championship, you see ratings and attendance go up 40 per cent," Mr. Banks says. "If we got any of that same result - which we will, when Canadian teams in the NHL ultimately go to the playoffs - it bodes very well for our business." TV AND STREAMING That business is changing fundamentally, however.

Mr. Banks brings the buzzy language of the tech world into his new role. He describes Rogers Media not as a media business, but as a "platform."

But something gets lost in translation. Platforms, unlike media companies, don't pay for content. Facebook and Google, which together have reshaped the digital advertising market, don't pay for rights fees, broadcast talent or writers. With no geographically restricted rights deals, no regulation, no networks to build, their scale has extended around the globe.

And the data they gather on their users' habits and interests draw marketers to spend billions on advertising with them. These platforms' growth has occurred largely at the expense of other media companies, as advertisers shift more of their investments into digital. Having spent seven years at Facebook, Mr. Banks knows that advertisers will follow audiences.

And those audiences are not signing up for more TV subscriptions. In 2013, 81.5 per cent of Canadian households paid for cable, satellite or internet protocol television (IPTV); by 2017, that number had fallen to 72.3 per cent, according to the most recent CRTC numbers.

"Something like 50 per cent of all media in Canada right now is consumed OTT," Mr. Banks says. "... Anybody under the age of 35, that's probably 80 per cent. ... We're not going to change the emerging consumption habits of consumers. We need to be bigger, stronger and more aggressive in the OTT space."

He points to the Citytv and FX apps as an example of Rogers Media's forays into streaming, and says the company will continue to expand the formats in which it delivers content "to help bolster" the business. That could include partnerships with streaming services or with other content owners.

The streaming space is becoming more competitive by the day, as both tech and entertainment giants - including Apple Inc. and Walt Disney Co. - are launching their own services. Streaming is also affecting the radio business: Rogers already makes podcasts, but is now working on a strategy to make its radio brands heard on smart speaker systems, which Mr. Banks sees as the future of the radio business.

Ideally, a Google Home or Alexa assistant would call up content from 680 News or Sportsnet 590 The Fan on demand. "You can't just think about radio. You need to think about the power of voice and audio," Mr. Banks says.

Coping with all of this change will require investment. Before taking the job, Mr. Banks says he met with the board, the chief executive officer and chief financial officer, and the Rogers family - asking them all what the commitment is to the media business. He says he heard a common refrain that there was "not only the appetite to invest but the necessity to invest." However, the figure he cites to illustrate that commitment - $2-billion - was the operating expense of running the media division last year, rather than fresh capital spending. Pushed on this point, Mr. Banks says, "a dollar is a dollar."

At least one industry peer has already decided media and telecom businesses are best operated separately: In 2016, Shaw Communications Inc. sold Shaw Media to Corus Entertainment Inc., the media business Shaw spun off in 1999.

But at least for now, Mr. Banks says Rogers will back the media business through the transition that is to come. Before the days of cable or internet, Rogers was a media company and the family's roots are in radio.

"Their family legacy sits right in the heart of media," Mr. Banks says. "... As long as the family is around ... it's going to be a part of the business that is meaningful."

Associated Graphic


Seasoned broadcaster Rick Brace, above, was pulled out of retirement to become Rogers media division president in 2015. He has been replaced by former eBay and Facebook executive Jordan Banks, top.


Wednesday, October 16, 2019

The railway is at the heart of our country's history, but our rail system increasingly feels like a historic relic. Much of the world is investing in trains and related infrastructure, while Canada is the only G7 nation without high-speed rail. A new national strategy is required, writes Elizabeth Renzetti. Canada cannot afford to miss the train
Saturday, October 12, 2019 – Print Edition, Page O1

Elizabeth Renzetti is a Globe and Mail columnist. Her latest book is Shrewed: A Wry and Closely Observed Look at the Lives of Women and Girls.

If you love train travel, Germany is heaven. I'm living in Berlin for a year, and sometimes I go and sit in the Hauptbahnhof, the central station, just to marvel at the bustle and beauty of a wellrun rail network. And maybe buy some chocolate.

More than 300,000 travellers pass under the Hauptbahnhof's soaring roof every day, exiting or entering more than 1,000 trains.

Yet the hoary joke suggesting German trains run on time isn't all that accurate; only 75 per cent of inter-city trains arrive within six minutes of schedule. And the remaining quarter are a subject of national hand-wringing.

The trains themselves are marvels of comfort, speed, cleanliness and efficiency. I cannot help but compare the experience to travelling on Via Rail, which someone accurately but cruelly described to me as "junky."

Riding a train in Canada can be a wondrous experience, as anyone who's looked out the window and seen a deer or a mountain peak will know. But it can also be maddening: Will we be pulled over for 20 minutes so a freight train can pass? Will the bumpiness of the rails cause my coffee cup to actually levitate off my tray? Will I freeze in my seat, or boil like a lobster? Canada's passenger-rail network could be vastly improved. It should be.

Much of the rest of the world is investing in high-speed rail, or upgrading its conventional infrastructure, and Canada is the only Group of Seven country without high-speed rail.

In the next decade, Germany will invest 86-billion ($125-billion) in passenger service; Deutsche Bahn is currently operating under a shortfall of 3-billion. Its recent "green" platform, largely criticized for its meekness, will see taxes on train tickets lowered and taxes on domestic air travel increased. China has built the world's largest highspeed rail network in only a decade.

Even in the United States, where passenger rail was neglected for most of the past century, bold projects are under way in California, in Florida, in Texas and the Midwest.

Shouldn't the same thing be happening in Canada?

We're a country because of the railway, for goodness sake. As Pierre Berton noted in his 1971 history of the Canadian Pacific Railway, The Last Spike, "it is a country shaped like a river - or a railway." In the days after Confederation, nation-building was the challenge - along with the occasional impassable bit of mountain. Now, the challenge is curtailing our greenhouse gas emissions by curbing car and plane travel, with passenger rail as an integral part of that plan.

Yet, in this federal election campaign, only the Green Party has made passenger rail an issue.

"Rail will be the hub" of the Greens' national transportation strategy. It includes investing $720-million in regional rail upgrades and building the long-debated high-speed corridors between Calgary and Edmonton and Toronto-Ottawa-MontrealQuebec City.

Green Party Leader Elizabeth May even did a quick whistlestop campaign tour on Via Rail last month. The NDP's platform pledges support to a proposed high-frequency rail corridor between Quebec City and Windsor, Ont.

Otherwise, Canada's federal parties are happy to let this particular train sit on the sidings.

"We're behind other countries," says David Collenette, the former federal transport minister who wrote a report in 2016 on highspeed rail in Southwestern Ontario for the government of Kathleen Wynne. After a variety of scenarios were tested, Mr. Collenette's report concluded that there was a business case to be made for an electrified, highspeed passenger service (hitting 250 km/hr) between the university hubs of London and KitchenerWaterloo, Ont., and on to Toronto.

Extending the line from London to Windsor would make less business sense.

Farmers complained about the potential disruption to agriculture along the route, but the Wynne government approved the plan and announced in 2018 that it would spend $11-billion over seven years building the highspeed corridor.

And then, as you may have heard, it lost the provincial election to Doug Ford's Progressive Conservatives. The promise of a quick, car-free trip between London and Toronto went off the rails. In Alberta, similarly, Rachel Notley's NDP government had talked about the possibility of a bullet train between Edmonton and Calgary, not the first time such a project had been announced. Then that government, too, was voted out, and with it the ambitious plans for a greener future. This cycle, which also kills urban light-rail and subway projects, could be summed up as: railways long, politics short.

"When governments change, priorities change," Mr. Collenette says. "It's easy to throw out certain promises of a previous government. And passenger rail, whether it's high speed or conventional rail or urban rapid transit, those are often the plans that get changed."

Okay, that's the prerogative of politicians. Fine. Huge infrastructure projects are difficult to push through at the best of times.

And for a variety of reasons, including our strung-out geography and historical underinvestment, intracity passenger rail is a tough sell from a strictly profit-making perspective. In July, The Canadian Press uncovered a confidential memo from Via Rail indicating that the Montreal-Quebec City leg of its proposed high-frequency corridor would be a drain on resources. As mentioned, when Mr.

Collenette studied the prospect of high-speed rail in Southern Ontario, he concluded there was a business case for the service between Toronto and London but not onto Windsor, but "you could make those choices for other socioeconomic reasons," he said.

These decisions might not be the most strictly cost-efficient in this age of the passenger car and the jet, but might in 30 or 50 years time if we're serious about reducing reliance on both. More than one expert paraphrased Field of Dreams: "If you build it, they will come."

The flygskam ("flight-shame," the guilt felt over flight emissions) movement makes more sense in Sweden, where it was born. It's easier, if you're an employer, to give incentives to workers not to fly across the country when the country is relatively small; it's a lot harder to ask Joe or Judith to take a train from Vancouver to Winnipeg.

The flip side of flygskam is tagskryt, or train-boasting, which we could use a bit more of in this country. Electric trains are a more efficient, less polluting way of moving people around, especially if the electricity is generated through low-emission means such as renewable or nuclear energy, and not, say, coal.

According to the International Energy Agency's Future of Rail report, trains carry 8 per cent of the world's passengers, but consume only 2 per cent of the energy used in transportation.

Nadine Ibrahim, who holds the Turkstra Chair in Urban Engineering at the University of Waterloo, says, "If you look at it from an environmental perspective, the fuel used in trains versus the fuel used in planes or cars, it's automatically a better option. It's a larger number of people moved in a more sustainable manner."

Prof. Ibrahim, for one, would like an efficient rail connection between Waterloo, where she works, and Toronto, where she lives. As it is, she leaves home at 6 a.m. to beat the nightmarish traf-

fic on Highway 401. Even a limited light-rail project, such as Kitchener-Waterloo's new ION line, has made a huge improvement in students' lives, she says: "It's made things much more affordable for students who can now live a little bit farther away and still get to school."

In this way, ambitious transportation policy makes life better beyond the time you're in transit.

"High-speed intracity rail policy is also really good housing policy," says urban planner Joe Berridge, citing figures from Britain's expansion of its well-used rail network. In essence, having fast, reliable transit links means you're creating value for those who can live and own a house in a commuter belt, without having to drive to work.

Mr. Berridge recently returned from China, and he's still marvelling over the high-speed trains and the gleaming stations that housed them. "China is a vast country, but so are we. There are vast spaces between cities, as there are in Canada." The difference is that the Chinese government has much more muscle in determining where it will put tracks and stations. And it has fast-growing cities of many millions, where Canada has modestly sized cities with empty stretches between them.

The high-speed train between Milan and Rome is also a marvel, Mr. Berridge says, "and that's something we could do in Canada." Even the train-averse United States, where the car has long been king, is building small stretches of fast rail. Richard Branson's Virgin trains will soon be plying a route between Miami and Orlando. Dallas and Houston are set to have a connection, and even the troubled link between Los Angeles and San Francisco is forging ahead, despite cost overruns, delays and the federal government's attempts to pull its funding.

The federal government could show some initiative by bolstering Via Rail, which has suffered the death of bureaucratic cuts almost since its birth in 1977. But Via does have a plan involving Toronto-Montreal, the most popular of its routes. To see where the problems on this route currently lie, it is instructive to look at the record of VIA's public meeting in 2018, during which it fielded various questions from irritated passengers, most of them on a certain theme: Why are your trains so late, and why do my teeth feel like they're being jarred loose when I ride them? Via's answer, in essence: not our rails, not our fault.

Via's passenger trains run almost entirely on tracks owned by CN and CP, and those tracks are much more heavily used by freight trains and their valuable cargo. As anybody will know who's had to pull over into a siding and watch a freight train go by, conflicts can and do happen, and the passengers seldom win.

So Via has a bold new plan: a route involving yet-to-be-built and existing tracks from Toronto to Quebec City, via Peterborough, Ottawa and Montreal. Passenger trains, running on dedicated tracks and no longer playing second fiddle to freight, would be able to run more frequently, at higher speeds. It would cost an estimated $4-billion (although you know what happens to estimates). Journey times would be shorter, and punctuality would improve. Add to this the benefit of train travel - being able to get up and stretch, to have a scotch if you liked, and to never have to curse the driver who cut you off in traffic. As they used to say in the old commercials: priceless.

In June, Via's high-frequency rail plan got a boost and, more importantly, a cash infusion of $71million from the Canadian Infrastructure Bank and Transport Canada for "additional planning activities," which hopefully means "studies to see if we can make this thing work." The infrastructure bank has also committed $1.3-billion to Montreal's light-rail network, the Réseau Express Métropolitain, or REM, which is currently under construction.

If the feasibility studies are in Via's favour, commuters between Montreal and Toronto could benefit from an alternative to clogged highways and annoying airports.

They could pat themselves on the back for making an ethical choice, and indulge in a little tagskryt. On the other hand, the political power structure might change, and Via's new plan will end up on top of a burning pile of similar reports from years gone by.

Perhaps the fundamental problem is one of perception. Our history is so entwined with railroads that we can only view trains historically. (Clearly, anyone who feels this way has not seen China's new 600 km/hr maglev beast.) As Shoshanna Saxe, assistant professor of engineering at the University of Toronto, put it: "We're used to conceiving travel traditionally as oriented around the car, so we don't have the lived experience of what the alternative can be."

This short-termism is what might ruin us all in the end. It's certainly been the dispiriting tone of this election campaign.

Yes, reinvesting in passenger rail would be expensive and bold, but what's the alternative? To see only what's always been in front of us, to judge everything only by the narrowest measure of immediate return on investment - is that how great civilizations are built? Is that how they're maintained? Or is it how they fall?

The Germans are thinking ahead. The Chinese are, too. In this moment of collective awakening about the planet's future, will Canada be able to make a leap of hope and ambition? As Prof.

Saxe says, "We need to be able to imagine a different way of building our infrastructure. We need a new collective imagination of the future."

I saw a tiny glimpse of that future when my family took a (packed) train out of Berlin for a kayaking trip in the countryside.

We managed to navigate the ticket-buying with little difficulty, but the ticket-taker onboard clucked at our lack of savvy. We could have saved a lot of money, she said, by buying a different family pass. Pretty soon, everyone sitting near us was chiming in with their two euros worth, offering advice in German and English about precisely the best way to get cheap tickets. I think they were still debating when we got off the train. It means something to them, this rail system that they love to complain about. It's part of their national fabric. It could be part of ours again, too.

Associated Graphic



The Liberal government's track record on arts and culture has had too few successes and big missteps, Simon Houpt writes. With the election looming, how do the major parties plan to help the stressed broadcasting industry?
Saturday, October 12, 2019 – Print Edition, Page R1

It's an embarrassment of riches.

Since the pioneering streaming service Netflix kicked off its international expansion in the fall of 2010 by launching in Canada, TV and movie viewers in this country have enjoyed an ever-increasing groaning board of delights. Other foreign streaming services such as Amazon Prime and CBS All Access joined the party, along with the Canadian-based offerings Crave and CBC Gem, wooing viewers with thousands of hours of on-demand content - from delightful short-form videos to slick, epic series boasting production budgets in excess of $100-million.

Canadian creators are reaping the rewards, too, as Netflix, Amazon, Hulu and others have helped homegrown shows such as Kim's Convenience, Schitt's Creek and Letterkenny break through with audiences and acclaim around the world.

But that success masks a domestic system under intense stress. Revenues are falling as Canadian viewers pivot from traditional TV to foreign-owned services delivered over the internet.

With a federal election less than two weeks away, industry experts and others are warning of a Canadian media ecosystem - which produces everything from entertainment programming to local news - in danger of buckling without new and imaginative government policy. And some are blaming the Liberals for wasting precious time during their four years in office.

"They have been completely asleep when it comes to the greatest series of challenges to our culture that we've had for as long as I can remember," claimed Richard Stursberg, a former broadcasting executive and the author of The Tangled Garden: A Canadian Cultural Manifesto for the Digital Age, published in April. Television and the news industry are "in a giant crisis. And the crisis is in large measure because [the Liberals] have allowed foreigners to come into the country and enjoy advantages that no Canadian company has in our own market."

Stursberg and others say that in Canada conventional domestic broadcasters operate under a set of heavy regulations - including the requirement to spend 30 per cent of revenues on Canadian programming. Other players such as cable companies have their own financial obligations. For decades those regulations, which limited the activities of foreign-owned companies in this country, protected the system and helped support the creation of hundreds of millions of dollars worth of domestic programming every year.

But regulators turned a blind eye to digital-media enterprises - companies as varied as Netflix and Google - until it was too late.

As revenues at those foreign services skyrocketed, conventional broadcasting revenues fell at an average rate over the past five years of 3.9 per cent, according to a recent report from the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission. Last year, they fell 4.2 per cent.

But although the Liberals didn't pledge during the 2015 campaign to address those problems, many in the industry greeted them warmly after they took office, not least because they were seen as a respite from the previous government. "In the Harper years, when you talked to government about our industry, you never used the 'c' word," said TV writer Jill Golick, referring to "culture."

"In those years, we only could talk about the value of the industry in business terms - which, in our country and our broadcast policy, isn't the only thing. The Broadcasting Act talks about the value of the television industry to the country's sovereignty. But those things did not appeal to the previous government. So, by comparison, this was good."

The Trudeau government's first few months in office were applauded even by some critics, including Chris Tolley, an audio producer who's now running for the Green Party in the riding of Toronto-Danforth. The new government "brought forward some things that have been incredibly helpful," Tolley said, citing the addition of $150-million to the annual parliamentary appropriation for CBC/Radio-Canada. The government also increased funding for Telefilm Canada, the Canada Council for the Arts and the National Film Board, as it had pledged to do in its 2015 election platform.

Then, out of nowhere, Heritage Minister Mélanie Joly declared in April, 2016, that "the current model is broken" and kicked off an 18-month period of consultation with consumers and content creators to bring the TV and film development, production and distribution system up to date.

"Everything is on the table," she insisted, raising hopes of a bold new vision. She floated the idea of overhauling the Broadcasting Act, which had been passed in 1991 - prior to the advent of the internet - as well as the Telecommunications Act (passed in 1993).

She invoked the glorious history of the Heritage Department and its creation of the CBC and the National Film Board. She flew to Silicon Valley to meet with the disruptors.

But her final report, issued in September, 2017, under the title Creative Canada, was greeted as a crashing disappointment. Critics attacked its flagship announcement - that Netflix had agreed to spend $500-million over five years on production in Canada - over the fact the money wouldn't necessarily be spent on certified Canadian content - that is, TV shows or films made by Canadians in key creative positions, such as writers, directors, producers and actors.

"I think there was a certain element in the Trudeau government of being enamoured of all this cool Netflix stuff," said Andrew Cash, a former MP who is running for the NDP in the Toronto riding of Davenport.

"I think it distracted them from the work of rolling up their sleeves and getting something done."

(A representative of the Conservative Party was also contacted for comment about the Liberal track record on culture. He did not respond.)

The government demurred even on requiring Netflix to charge GST, spurring more outrage.

"It's completely ridiculous," said Pierre Nantel, a long-time member of the standing committee on Canadian heritage who served as the MP for Longueuil- Saint-Hubert under the NDP and switched to the Green Party last summer.

"There is GST on an apple turnover and on tires. So how could there not be on an offering that is so important?" Nantel argues that having Netflix remit GST would be a preliminary step toward bringing the company into the regulatory fold so the government could learn more about its operations, including its support for Canadian content.

Stursberg says there is an enormous opportunity for the next government to bring in policies that benefit Canadian viewers and creators.

"I don't think anyone in their right mind would want to say that Canadians shouldn't have access to Netflix - or Amazon Prime or Disney+ when they get here," he noted. "They're simply saying: Look, we're already going to give you a break by not requiring you to be Canadian-owned. We are going to say, however, that you have to play by the same general rule as everybody else and make the same contributions. If we did that, then what we would do is inject a very large amount of money into Canadian production. And that might be a great thing. Because suddenly we'd have Netflix, we'd have Amazon, we'd have Disney, we'd have AT&T Time Warner all investing in Canadian shows and then distributing them through their global networks. That might be a great thing for the country.

But we've got to require them to do it, as a matter of simple fairness."

Apparently stung by some of the criticism, Joly did eventually launch a process to rewrite the Broadcasting Act, striking an expert panel in June, 2018, that will offer recommendations next January. And she began speaking in terms that suggested she would bring the digital services under some form of regulation, saying, "If you're part of the system, you contribute." But she was shuffled out of Heritage the following month.

And some, such as Nantel, say the new panel is redundant, since the industry already offered its thoughts during the previous 18month consultation. "I think it's really unfortunate that, for everyone involved, we keep repeating ourselves all the time," he said.

Joly's successor, Pablo Rodriguez, has taken up the cause of regulation. In a recent interview with The Globe and Mail, he pointed to the 2019 Liberal election platform, which commits to introducing legislation in the first year of a new mandate that would require "meaningful levels of Canadian content" from all content providers, including digital services.

What exactly does that mean?

Would he level the playing field, as many are demanding, by requiring Netflix and Amazon Prime to spend 30 per cent of their revenues in Canada on Canadian programming? "To be honest, those are decisions that we'll make at that moment, when we receive the recommendations from the [committee]," Rodriguez replied. "We have ideas. I have my own personal ideas."

Why has it taken so long for the Liberal government to act on what was clearly a pressing issue when it took office? "We had to consult, explore, talk to the experts, see the best practices," said Rodriguez, adding that the last review of the Broadcasting Act took six years. "These are structural changes, right? These are fundamental changes, and sometimes when we make fundamental changes it's worth taking a little bit of time to do it right. We're talking here about the role of the CRTC, the role of the CBC, all of the things that have changed and are evolving in a system that completely changed."

If regulating streaming services wasn't seen as important after the Creative Canada consultations, what has changed in the Liberal Party's thinking since then? "Everything changes at the speed of light," Rodriguez said. "Things are changing on a daily basis, and things are going to accelerate. "We understand the challenges, but we also understand that a bill that has not been touched in [almost three] decades, a bill that was drafted and adopted before the existence of the internet has to be totally redesigned to take into consideration the new challenges. And also, not only for today but for tomorrow, because if we draft a bill that answers problems we're facing today without taking into consideration everything that can come in the future, then we have to redo the whole thing in a year or two or three."

NATIONAL PARTY PLATFORMS ON CULTURE The Conservative Party of Canada had not released a platform by press time. The People's Party of Canada's platform does not address arts and culture.

NDP "Arts and culture are at the heart of who we are as Canadians. It's how we listen and understand each other better. It's how we connect across vast distances and celebrate our identities."

Key pledges: Promises to "make sure that Netflix, Facebook, Google and other digital-media companies play by the same rules as Canadian broadcasters. That means paying taxes, supporting Canadian content in both official languages, and taking responsibility for what appears on their platforms - just like other media outlets."

Increase funding for CBC and Radio-Canada. "Arts and cultural institutions [to] receive stable, long-term funding to grow and promote Canada's diverse cultures and histories. We will also extend support to Canadian media to assist them in making the digital transition."

Financial support for the Indigenous theatre program at the National Arts Centre "as part of our larger efforts to honour and support Indigenous arts and culture."

Institute income tax averaging for artists and cultural workers.

GREEN PARTY "Few sectors have such a small ecological footprint, but deliver such multifaceted benefits to communities and our national identity as the arts and culture."

Key pledges: Increase funding to "all of Canada's arts and culture organizations including the Canada Council for the Arts, the National Film Board and Telefilm Canada."

Review film industry tax incentives "to ensure all parts of Canada are competitive and attractive to the industry, with incentives rising when Canadian artistic and technical talent are employed."

"Reform antitrust laws to enable the break-up of media conglomerates."

"Close the loophole that exempts social-media platforms from collecting taxes on advertising and ensure all government advertising is placed in Canadian publications."

"Increase funding to CBC/Radio-Canada by $315-million per year until the per-capital level of funding is equal to that of the BBC." (CBC/Radio-Canada received approximately $1.2-billion in government funding for 20182019, or approximately $34 a person. The BBC receives approximately $115 a person, according to the CBC corporate report, A Creative Canada, issued in Nov. 2016.

Funding CBC/Radio-Canada at the same per-capita level as the BBC would mean an annual Parliamentary appropriation of approximately $4.3-billion.)

"Reform the government structure of CBC/Radio-Canada to remove the potential for political interference in board appointments. (The Liberal government reformed the board appointment process in the summer of 2017, to eliminate the potential for political interference.)

LIBERAL PARTY "From the writers who tell our stories to the comedians who make us laugh to the artists whose music forms the soundtrack of our lives, Canadians are proud of the creativity we share with each other - and the world."

Key pledges: Creation of a $200 Culture Pass distributed to each Canadian child at the age of 12 to help access "theatres, museums, galleries, workshops and other cultural venues and local Canadian content."

Strengthen the regional mandate of CBC/Radio-Canada "so local stations can broadcast more local news; and require CBC/Radio-Canada to open up its digital platform so that journalism startups and community newspapers can access affordable technology to develop and distribute local content."

Increase annual funding for Telefilm Canada "by nearly 50 per cent a year."

New Cultural Diplomacy strategy, including "at least one international mission each year to promote Canadian culture and creators around the world."

In the first year of the new term, introduce legislation to "ensure that all content providers - including internet giants - offer meaningful levels of Canadian content in their catalogues, contribute to the creation of Canadian content in both official languages and promote this content and make it easily accessible on their platforms."

What does it mean to be homeless as an Indigenous person? Discuss
'Discuss' is a Globe Opinion feature in which two people - from politicians to journalists, academics to authors - engage in a conversation that flows out of a single question. Today's topic: Having nowhere to live on your native land
Saturday, October 12, 2019 – Print Edition, Page O5

Jesse Thistle is Métis-Cree, from Prince Albert, Sask. He is an assistant professor in Métis Studies at York University in Toronto. He won a Governor-General's Academic Medal in 2016, and is a Pierre Elliot Trudeau Foundation Scholar and a Vanier Scholar. He recently published his debut memoir, From the Ashes: My Story of Being Métis, Homeless, and Finding My Way.

Helen Knott is a Dane Zaa, Nehiyaw and mixed Euro-descent woman living in northeastern British Columbia. In 2016, she was one of 16 global change makers featured by the Nobel Women's Initiative for her commitment to ending gender-based violence.

She was named an RBC Taylor Prize Emerging Writer in 2018. She recently published her first book, In My Own Moccasins: A Memoir of Resilience.

They held their discussion over e-mail in August.

JESSE THISTLE: My work in Indigenous homelessness at the Canadian Observatory of Homelessness has described First Nation, Métis and Inuit houselessness as a kind of diasporic mobile community whereby the state has failed to spend on housing, infrastructure, education, work opportunities for home communities on par with the rest of Canadians - which is sad because these rights were enshrined in treaty. Indigenous people have to travel vast distances to access services the rest of Canadians take for granted.

Some don't even have proper houses or safe drinking water.

Another aspect of this is the deep feeling of rootlessness that goes along with it, and that Indigenous peoples have felt within Canadian society, where they see their lands usurped by settlement and development and simply have nowhere to be within the nation-state. The anthropological term "out of place" describes that perfectly.

The final aspect is the misrecognition of territory after continual development, whereby large scale manipulation, climatic shifts and human destruction has changed environments so much that they alter the very composition of the land and animals and make it unrecognizable to Indigenous peoples whose lives traditionally have centred on connection to land.

There is a deep sadness that comes from witnessing the loss of land as it transforms into something that is unrecognizable. Australian environmental philosophers have termed it ecological grief, and the topic is most thoroughly explored by Canadian scholar Ashlee Cunsolo in her work in Labrador around Inuit mentalhealth experiences of watching their lands transform as they live upon them.

I think the first step in healing, then, is understanding that colonial and capitalist processes are under way to profit from the land's exploitation and that it continues to displace Indigenous people into various dimensions of homelessness. We need to start here; we need to admit that as a nation and move forward building policies from this jump-off point. And when I say homeless, I clearly do not just mean without having a structure of habitation, it's more like having no place to be within the nation-state.

HELEN KNOTT: I agree with that definition. I am grateful to be connected to the territory of my maternal bloodline. I once had a conversation with my Auntie and talked about what it is that I do as a writer and a social worker. She called me back the next day with the phrase "yetchay kay nusgee" which roughly translates to: "I remember things from long ago." We are living memory keepers, as writers and as Indigenous people, but the land itself is the oldest memory keeper. The mountains, prairies, lakes, islands, oceans are access to memory, to story and, ultimately, to healing.

I have a specific memory that I pulled on in my early years of sobriety. It was in the summer of 2012 and I stood at the confluence of the Peace River and the Halfway River in northeastern British Columbia. I stood in the water and let my toes settle into the round and flat pebbles and stones. I looked across the river at the valley hillside that was rich with green pine trees and spruce. I closed my eyes. I wiggled my toes further into the floor of the river. I felt the sunshine on my face. I told myself, "Remember what this feels like. Remember what it is like to be so deeply rooted in the territory of your people and watched over." When I was away for school and work for the following years, it was that memory that I summoned in order to carry me through the hard waves of depression.

There is what you called "ecological grief," which I've come to know as "land trauma" as defined by the Native Youth Sexual Health Network through a case study report involving Indigenous women across North America. That very place I described above will soon be underwater in a reservoir for the mega hydroelectric project, the Site C dam. I find my grief in regards to the pending loss of the stretch of valley and land that I know - and which knows me - is ongoing.

Are there any specific memories you pulled on through your early years of healing? THISTLE: I used to run when I first got out of jail. The minutes were like eons at first, holding on for dear life as a lifetime of addictions and trauma gnashed its teeth, calling me to let go and use. Only longdistance running on my rebuilt foot helped stave off the cravings long enough to give me a chance against the psychological and spiritual warfare of first coming clean off crack and alcohol.

You see, my foot is held together by wires, and the scar I had on the side was still wide open when I first dared to run. I used to be able to stick my index finger into it, right down to the bone. But anything was better than focusing on the inner pain I carried. Each step was like running on glass, early on. The pain of bone and metal scraping my ankle was with me on every run. Eventually, the pain turned to a numbing kind of euphoria - it must be like that for those out on thirst dances or fasting with the land or Sun Dances with piercings.

One day, in a state of total bliss while running, I saw an old tree. It stood decrepit, but it was still noble in its own way. I swear I saw it wink at me as I passed the first time, its lead branch extended out toward the finish line. The next run, in a similar state, I felt the same presence and got the same courage to follow where the tree pointed, to finish the race. It was like that every time - the old tree was there, at the end of my run, assuring me I was on the right track. It kept me sober, kept me grounded.

Years later, when I returned to rehab to thank the people who saved my life, I drove with my wife, Lucie, to see my tree.

There it was, crooked and cranky just like before. I remembered it, and it remembered me. As we went to leave, Lucie noted a road sign beside the tree. It read "Carlsbad." I never noticed it back when I was training.

Lucie said, "Carlsbad is the German way to say where I was born in the Czech Republic. That's how you say Karlovy Vary."

Then I looked at the tree again. For the first time, I noticed its long branch, the one that I believed pointed to the end of my daily course, was actually pointing to the sign, and not the end of the running course. The tree had been telling me the whole time to keep going - not to the end of the race - but toward my wife. The woman who'd change everything for me; the woman who'd help me back onto my feet and out of homelessness finally.

I learned then that's how ceremony really is: It comes to us in our daily lives just in different forms, and in ways we might not recognize at first.

I guess I remember that tree as you remember the water.

You talked about the early waves of depression in sobriety. Do you have any suggestions on how to fight the later waves? Things you do? People you see?

KNOTT: The waves are inescapable but I have learned to carry myself through them in better ways.

Last year, my mom was diagnosed with two types of Stage 5 cancer. I felt like a little girl building sand castles on the beach with her back toward the ocean where a tsunami wave loomed in the distance. If I didn't look, then perhaps it didn't exist.

During that period, my mind started to wander to using cocaine again after six years of sobriety. The thoughts invaded the simple moments - waiting at a stoplight, or when I was out picking up schoolproject materials with my son. It was then I knew I couldn't walk through my grief and sadness alone. I took the steps to find a counsellor and she helped me walk through those feelings. I entered into this space where I learned how to let myself fall apart relying solely on the faith that Creator would put me back together again afterward.

I find maintaining sobriety is never just a single choice but it is a series of small choices one makes over and over again.

There is a humility in keeping your wellness, and I suppose the tip would be is that you have to be aware of your journey and when you need to ask for help.

I can recall sitting in an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting during my fourth rehab stint with styrofoam cup in hand, sludge coffee in cup and butt on a hard plastic seat. A young guy, around 20 years old, who had two years of sobriety, said something like, "I'm here because even though I know I've been sober for some time, there are things in my thinking that still aren't right. I need other people to fix that, 'cause a broken mind can't fix a broken mind."

Those are words I carry with me to this day. It is okay to need help and it is brave to ask for it.

THISTLE: It's been 11 years sober for me.

I always think of how close I came to death - from suicide to people trying to kill me out on the street. Such is the life of a small-time hustler. That fear and desperation keep me sober. Plus, my foot is always in pain. The pain reminds me, without fail, to fly straight or else. I was also an old duck, 33 years old, when I found Lucie, so when she picked me, I felt like I'd won the lottery. Every morning, I've woken up, from that day to this, wondering how an old skid mark like me ended up with such a goddess like her. Those are what held me for 11 years. Simple, I know. And I say this knowing I don't know much. I am a simple man.

I wouldn't even say I am well or that I have wellness or I am healed. I just deal.

Do you feel this way, too?

KNOTT: I would say that I am more answer than I am question mark these days. Healing is a continuous and ongoing journey, so I have accepted that it is never really over with, especially as an Indigenous person living within a settler state. On that note, I discussed self-care today with my class of aspiring social workers and I am wondering, what is one quirky selfcare thing you do? THISTLE: I go to the spa or play with my cat. I kick this stuffed frog we got at IKEA down the hall and the cat chases it.

So fun.

KNOTT: Cuddles with my son, and babies in general, are medicine for me. He is reaching the age - he's 11 - where cuddles may soon be a thing of the past so I really try to take in these moments. I am curious, did you find that maintaining sobriety while excelling as an academic was challenging?

THISTLE: Yes, always. I daydream of smoking cigarettes and drinking a stiff whisky when I am happy. Sometimes I fantasize about smoking crack and I always have to remember to do my gratitude list because that reminds me of what I'll lose if I slip.

I know you recommend reconnecting with the land to help healing, but how would you help Indigenous urban people do that in the city?

KNOTT: I have never lived in a large city but I would think that one would have to pay a little more attention to find the pockets of sacred spaces around them, because they most definitely exist. When the land has been reconfigured and shifted, it doesn't mean that you can't practice small acts of ceremony and have those moments between you and Creator/spirit.

Take the Peace River here in our territory.

She has two hydro dams on her. Does the interference of men make her any less sacred? Nah. She has had to work harder to show up, but she is still there.

Diverging paths: Thunder Bay's racial and class divides defined by bus routes and pickup trucks
Tuesday, October 8, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A1

THUNDER BAY -- On Thunder Bay's official crest, there's a picture of a canoe, and in the canoe seven men in blue shirts sit around one man dressed in black.

Starting in the 17th century, merchants seeking beaver pelts travelled up the St.

Lawrence River and through the Great Lakes to what is now Thunder Bay. They took the trip in 36-foot canoes made of birchbark with payloads of 6,000 pounds, paddled by French-Canadian and Indigenous voyageurs, while a Scottish fur baron, known as a bourgeois, sat passively in the middle.

These were the men in blue, and the man in black.

They survive as a relic on the municipal crest, a celebration of the city's founding industry.

But they also illustrate hierarchies of power and mobility that continue to define Thunder Bay, where transport plays an outsize role in shaping daily life and putting people in their place.

Then, as now, if you wanted to understand this divided city in the middle of the country, look at how people get around.

Public transit is often treated as an afterthought in Thunder Bay. Just 4 per cent of the city's residents commute by bus, according to the 2016 census, compared with the 88 per cent who travel to work by car or truck.

Brad Loroff, the city's transit manager, acknowledges that most of his riders are "not travelling by choice, but travelling by need."

People in need here are disproportionately Indigenous, and the bus reflects that.

The public service announcements posted above the rows of seats this spring included a helpline for Indigenous women and an anti-racism program ("Respect. It begins with you and me").

The fact that the bus is essentially an Indigenous form of travel has made it a locus of racism.

The transit authority gets periodic complaints from people who feel bus drivers have refused to pick them up because of their skin colour. "It's a concern," Mr. Loroff acknowledged.

For Autumn WhiteFeather, it's more than a concern. This spring, the young First Nations woman wrote on Facebook about an incident in which a bus driver asked her to turn her music down, although she was wearing headphones, and then gave her misleading directions. She feels his behaviour was racially motivated.

"This wasn't the first time I had a run in with him," she said in a message to The Globe and Mail. "He is very racist towards the natives and East Indians especially."

Ann Magiskan, the city's aboriginal liaison officer and a member of Lac Seul First Nation, sometimes rides the bus just to keep an eye out for bigotry. She herself has been mistreated on public transit because of her ethnicity, she believes: She accidentally flashed an expired transfer while boarding a bus recently, and the driver responded with undisguised suspicion. "The lady says, 'This is no good, this is from yesterday. Are you trying to scam the bus?' " Ms. Magiskan recalled. "I looked at her and said, 'Scam the bus for $2.75? I work out of the City Hall building.' " Moments of hostility are compounded by an overall neglect of the transit system by a car-dominated city. In 2010, the indoor Brodie Street bus terminal - a popular meeting place for Indigenous youth - was torn down to make way for a new provincial courthouse.

The new terminal outside of City Hall is open to the elements and although its stand-alone shelters have on-demand radiant heat, Mr. Loroff admits that the technology "doesn't work so well when the temperatures plummet to, like, minus 20" - which in Thunder Bay they often do.

Meanwhile, at many stops, there are no shelters at all.

Thunder Bay Transit is also looking to scrap a bus route that covers the neighbouring Fort William First Nation reserve, citing low ridership figures.

If council approves the plan, the socalled Mission route - which alludes to the reserve's history as a Jesuit mission in the 19th century - will be losing its regularly scheduled buses in favour of smaller, ondemand vehicles.

At a public consultation in February, Mr.

Loroff found that some riders were "scared" by the proposed change. "They say, 'I don't want to lose my transit service!' " he recalled. "We tell them, 'You don't have good transit service now.' " It's not just the Mission route: No one in Thunder Bay has particularly good transit service. More heavily trafficked routes are often cumbersome and slow. A bus trip across town can easily take more than an hour and require several transfers, in a place where virtually nothing is more than a 15-minute drive away.

Money is part of the problem. While the city spent nearly $16-million on roads in its 2018 budget, it provided more than $12million for transit. When asked why he didn't ask council for more money to provide better service, Mr. Loroff balked.

"So, [I] can come back at budget time and put [my] head on the chopping block and ask for that," he said.

The bus's low standing on the municipal agenda was in evidence during a city council meeting in May, when the chamber discussed an application for newly available federal transit funding. When it was Mayor Bill Mauro's turn to speak, he said he was concerned that the city would be on the hook for more spending of its own if it accepted the package from Ottawa.

"There comes a point at which, how much more transit money can we use?" he said.

The concerns of drivers take up a much bigger share of the city's political oxygen.

Potholes are a particular obsession. The weekend newspaper is full of reader complaints about them, and until recently "Report a Pothole" was the most prominent feature on the City of Thunder Bay website; visitors looking for "Aboriginal Relations" had to scroll down.

If you can afford to, you drive in Thunder Bay. Preferably something big. Pickups and SUVs are so common that even people who drive a regular car simply call it their "vehicle."

While trucks are popular in many smaller cities with poor public transit, they are at a particular premium in Thunder Bay.

That is in part because of the city's proximity to nature and the local popularity of off-road driving, but also because of the unusual, split nature of the place. Until 1970, Thunder Bay was comprised of two cities, Fort William to the south and Port Arthur to the north. To this day, both downtowns remain, with a long stretch of strip malls and heavy industry between them, making driving by far the most convenient way to get around.

Four wheels and a flatbed may be king in Thunder Bay, but they're also expensive, and many low-income Indigenous people bike instead. That leaves them open to different kinds of abuse. On one hand, the ubiquity of Indigenous cyclists has given birth to a racist trope. Travis Hay, a historian at Lakehead University, cringes as he tells a joke he heard often while growing up in Thunder Bay.

"What does an Indian get for his birthday?" it goes. "Your bike."

On top of prejudice, Indigenous cyclists have to contend with a dangerous lack of biking infrastructure. The city boasts 42 kilometres of bike lanes and "shared" bike and car lanes, but many of them wind through leafy residential streets, and bike riders on arterial roads usually just resort to the sidewalk, when there is one.

When collisions happen between a car and a bike, as they inevitably do, the police sometimes seem to blame the victim. Jeff Moorley, a lawyer at the personal injury firm White Macgillivray Lester, said he has seen cases where a cyclist was hit by a car, then charged with biking on the sidewalk.

"It adds insult to injury," he said.

The same sort of double jeopardy awaits pedestrians in Thunder Bay. In February, 2017, an Indigenous woman was struck by a car while crossing the street, leaving her with a broken leg and a concussion. While she recovered in hospital, a police officer brought her a ticket for "entering the highway unsafely," according to a report last year from the provincial Office of the Independent Police Review Director.

Walking the streets in Thunder Bay as an Indigenous person can be fraught in many ways. Stories of white men hurling garbage out of their car windows at pedestrians are common. In February, 2018, the occupants of a silver hatchback drove through the city shouting racist abuse and pelting Indigenous people with eggs, sending one man to the hospital.

The consequences of these attacks can be severe. Barbara Kentner, a 34-year-old Indigenous woman, was walking home with her sister in the early morning of January 29, 2017, when she was hit in the stomach by a trailer hitch thrown from a passing car. Her sister said that one of the passengers yelled, "I got one," as the car drove away. Ms. Kentner died several months later, and a young white man named Brayden Bushby was eventually charged with second-degree murder in the case. He is awaiting trial.

Thunder Bay is almost exactly halfway across Canada: about 4,000 kilometres of highway driving from both St. John's in the east and Whitehorse in the west.

Historically, that central location has made the city a crossroads, from its use as an annual rendezvous point for fur traders in the 19th century, to Thunder Bay's role as a trans-shipment point for Prairie grain heading east in the 20th.

Today, though, the city's place on the map can feel less like a nexus and more like a confinement. Simply put, it's easy to become stuck in Thunder Bay. Frequent coach service once linked the city to the wider world, but the last Greyhound bus pulled out of the station last fall, part of a corporate retrenchment across Northern and Western Canada. (Now, an upstart company called Kasper offers the only local bus service, and then only to nearby destinations such as Longlac and White River.) The train isn't an option for leaving town either: Via Rail cancelled passenger service to Thunder Bay in 1990. Today, a husk of one of Via's distinctive yellow and blue railcars sits on display along the banks of the Kaministiquia, part of the Kam River Heritage Park, along with an old tugboat.

Historically, hitchhiking has been one way for low-income people to leave town, but that comes with serious risks, and can have deadly consequences for Indigenous women, especially. In 2017, a woman named Diane Geissler testified at the national inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls. She described how her mother, Kathleen McGinnis, tried to hitchhike from Thunder Bay to British Columbia in the late 1970s, in search of her son, who had been apprehended by a child welfare agency. Ms.

McGinnis was found dead along a highway near Calgary.

Even people with the means to come and go freely can be struck, while travelling, by Thunder Bay's haunting remoteness. Hundreds of kilometres of boreal forest, lake and Canadian Shield stand between them and the next city of any size.

That space was once traversed by voyageurs and bourgeois in birchbark canoes, a journey that helped knit the country together by making its expanses feel smaller.

But distance is distance, and today it is never more stark than when seen from the sky, at night.

"You don't really realize how isolated you are, here, until you fly in the dark," said Mr. Loroff, the transit chief. "When you take off, it takes a while before you see lights ... You're in the dark for a while."

Associated Graphic

In Thunder Bay, a bus trip across town can easily take more than an hour and require several transfers.


Left: Voyageur imagery is seen on the streets of Thunder Bay, as the area was an important hub for settler travel in the 17th century. Today, many bus and rail links have been cancelled, leaving public-transit users, who are predominantly Indigenous, stranded or stuck with cumbersome and slow service.

According to the 2016 census, only 4 per cent of Thunder Bay's residents commute by bus, compared with the 88 per cent who travel to work by car or truck.

Left: The new public-transit terminal outside of Thunder Bay's City Hall is open to the elements, but many stops have no shelters at all. Right: Many Indigenous people choose to bike instead of taking transit, but then they are faced with the city's lack of biking infrastructure.

On green Welsh pastures, farmers fear lean years when Brexit comes
A sheep and cattle industry that depends on EU markets is bracing for price collapses and economic uncertainty, and anxiety is spreading as other businesses flee the area
Friday, October 11, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A10

TYNYGRAIG, WALES -- Wyn Evans's family has been raising sheep along the lush valleys of western Wales for 500 years, and as he approaches 60, Mr. Evans would like to pass the farm on to his son. But that's becoming increasingly uncertain because of Brexit.

Mr. Evans is typical of many farmers in this part of Wales, where bumpy roads snake up and down steep hillsides lined with grazing sheep. He has about 400 sheep and 60 cattle across 200 acres. He and his wife, Nicole, and their son, Gwynfor, are just about breaking even. But similar to almost all other sheep farmers in Wales, the Evans family depends on the European Union for survival.

About 40 per cent of Welsh lamb is exported, and nearly all of that goes to France, Germany and other European Union countries, where it's considered such a delicacy it has been given a special geographic designation, like Parma ham and Champagne.

Once Britain leaves the EU, lamb exports to the bloc will face a 46per-cent tariff, and the duty on some cuts of sheep meat will run as high as 61 per cent. And unless Britain slaps similar tariffs on its imports, the country will be awash with cheap lamb from New Zealand.

"It would be quite catastrophic," Mr. Evans said as he sipped a cup of coffee at his kitchen table.

"We could see prices collapse by about 30 per cent. And that would make the job totally and utterly unprofitable."

It's not as though the family has other options. Growing crops is all but impossible in the rugged Welsh countryside, which is why farmers in Wales depend more on sheep than their counterparts in England, Scotland or Northern Ireland.

For a region with three million people and nearly 10 million sheep, much is at stake.

Mr. Evans said he voted to remain in the EU, but believes the government should respect the referendum result.

It's not just farmers who are worried. As Britain lurches toward a deadline of Oct. 31 to leave the EU, barring a last-minute extension, anxiety is increasing all over Wales. This region is often overlooked as the Brexit drama plays out in Westminster and Brussels, but no other part of the United Kingdom has more to lose from a disorderly departure than Wales.

The EU accounts for 61 per cent of all Welsh exports, compared with 46 per cent for the U.K. overall. Wales also receives about $1-billion annually from the EU in farm subsidies and regional development grants, far more than any other part of the U.K.

The Welsh coast has seven ports, and many rely heavily on EU trade. Among the most vital is Holyhead, which is a crucial entry point for Irish truckers moving goods across Britain to the continent and is second only to Dover in terms of freight traffic volumes.

Many parts of Wales are already feeling the effects from the uncertainty surrounding Brexit and the increasing likelihood that Britain will leave without a withdrawal agreement. Ford Motor Co. is closing its engine plant in Bridgend, cutting 1,700 jobs.

Quinn Radiators Ltd. has shut its factory in Newport, throwing 300 people out of work at what was once the largest radiator plant in Europe. The Tata Steel mill in Port Talbot is losing £1-million a day, and Airbus SE has said it will review its U.K. operations after Brexit, raising questions about the future of its wing plant in Flintshire, which employs more than 6,000 people.

"I don't think anybody would disagree that Wales could be more prone to economic problems resulting from a no-deal Brexit," said Max Munday, director of the Welsh economy research unit at Cardiff University.

He added that the region's industrial base is particularly vulnerable to Brexit because it's dominated by branch plants of multinational firms. If Brexit goes badly, those plants "could easily relocate to other areas of Europe, and indeed there's some evidence that's already occurred," Dr. Munday said. Many businesses, particularly in the food and beverage sectors, are also more susceptible to non-tariff barriers such as licensing requirements, product standards and rules that restrict the flow of goods from countries that don't have a trade agreement with the EU. For government officials trying to figure out how to plan for Brexit, "this not knowing what's going to happen is quite a nightmare," Dr.

Munday said.

Beyond the economic concerns, there's also a rising debate about the region's future, particularly among those who want to remain in the EU.

Wales voted 53 per cent to leave in the 2016 referendum, compared with 52 per cent for the country as a whole. The result has prompted a surge of interest in independence as a way of keeping Wales in the EU.

Recent opinion polls have put support for sovereignty at around 25 per cent, and a YouGov poll last summer found that 41 per cent of those surveyed backed independence if it meant Wales would stay in the EU.

That's a far cry from before the referendum, when Welsh independence garnered single-digit backing in most polls.

"Brexit has basically shaken everything out," said Sion Jobbins, a lifelong nationalist in Aberystwyth who co-founded YesCymru in 2014. Since the referendum, the group has opened 35 chapters across Wales, and some of its recent rallies have attracted 5,000 people. Mr. Jobbins said he's never seen such an interest in independence, even among long-time nationalists, who for years preferred to concentrate their efforts on promoting and protecting the Welsh language.

Independence may still be a way off, he added, but "for the first time, people in Wales are asking questions."

Last week Adam Price, the leader of the Welsh nationalist Plaid Cymru, told the party's conference: "The U.K. as we know it could cease to exist in a short few years."

Brexit has also revealed a paradox in Wales that has confounded many outsiders. Support for leaving the EU was highest - up to 62 per cent - in communities that have received more EU funding for regional development than almost anywhere else in Europe. Nowhere is that dichotomy more evident than in Ebbw Vale, a city of 18,000 people in the heart of the Welsh coal country.

This part of Wales once fueled the industrial revolution, and the coal and iron mines employed more than 250,000 people.

Few were bigger than the Ebbw Vale Steel, Iron and Coal Co., which started in 1790 and revolutionized the process of converting wrought iron to steel. The company had 34,000 workers at its peak in the 1920s, and operated the largest steel mill in Europe. Postwar modernization gradually made the coal mines uneconomical, and steelmaking eventually moved offshore. Most of the Welsh pits closed in the 1980s, and the Ebbw Vale plant shut down for good in 2002. By then it was down to 780 workers.

The loss of the mill sent Ebbw Vale into a steep economic decline. Today, the main street is scattered with dilapidated buildings and empty store fronts.

Good jobs are scarce, and most people head to Cardiff or England to find work. Ebbw Vale's plight made it a prime candidate for assistance from all levels of government, including the EU. Regional development grants from Brussels have helped build a highway, a hospital, a sports centre, a community college, a library, housing and an office building. The EU also chipped in to redevelop the city's small main square with a collage commemorating the city's mining history, a giant clock and a four-metre-tall stainless-steel dragon that depicts the symbol of Wales. It's hard to go anywhere in Ebbw Vale without seeing the EU logo on a sign, a building or even at the base of the dragon.

Far from winning over locals, the government money has bred hostility toward the EU. Many people say the glittering projects are poor substitutes for lost livelihoods. This city voted 62 per cent to leave the EU, and feelings about the bloc have only hardened. "It's all a waste of money," Kay Durbin said as she had coffee and cigarettes with three friends outside the Box Café. "I voted to leave because I don't want to be dictated to by the EU." As her friends nodded in agreement, Ms.

Durbin pointed toward the square and added: "The clock doesn't work properly and I can do without the dragon."

Down the street, Mauro Joseph and his wife, Caroline, run the Central Café, which used to be a busy hub for hungry millworkers and now serves just a handful of customers.

The Josephs are among a minority who voted to remain in the EU in 2016, but they feel the Brexit debate has gone on too long and Britain should leave as soon as possible. Mr. Joseph worked in the mill for 22 years before taking over the café in the 1990s, and he says Ebbw Vale has never recovered from the plant closing. "You could leave school on Friday and start work Monday," he said. When asked whether the EU had helped soften the blow, Mr. Joseph laughed and Ms.

Joseph replied: "A lot of the money was wasted. We had a swimming pool and they knocked it down to build another one."

"There was enormous economic and social change that I don't think the EU money could ever have hoped to match or compensated for," said Victoria Winckler, director of the Bevan Foundation, a think tank based in south Wales. "But it was talked up in a way that implied that it could." She's also not optimistic about the future for Wales after Brexit. "My own view is that we will have a period of chaos, which may well resolve quite quickly, but then there will be a long-term lack of economic growth," she said. "Just a very slow decline."

Up the road from Ebbw Vale, Keith Williams is trying to stay hopeful. He's a farmer near Llandrindod Wells in central Wales, and he has 1,000 sheep and 23 cattle. The Waitrose grocery-store chain buys most of his lamb, which gives him some protection from the EU export market. But he's still worried about prices collapsing after Brexit, and he recalled the last time the EU shut out British lamb, in 2001, during an outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease.

"We weren't able to export for about 12 months, so lambs that had been selling the year before for between £45 and £50 were selling for £28 or £30," he said, adding that many farmers were wiped out.

Similar to a lot of farmers in his area, Mr. Williams voted to remain in the EU, but he believes the government should honour the referendum result and end the uncertainty. In a hopeful gesture, he recently signed legal papers to make his 21-year-old daughter a partner in the farm.

When asked if she still wants to be a farmer, Mr. Williams smiled and said: "She does at the moment." Then he paused, and added: "Farming is a long-term thing and it's been through cycles. People have still got to eat."

Associated Graphic

Welsh farmer Keith Williams sells most of his lamb to the Waitrose grocery chain, but he says he's worried about a price collapse after Brexit, adding that many farmers were wiped out the last time the European Union shut out British lamb. That was in 2001, amid an outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease.


Once Britain leaves the European Union, lamb exports to the bloc will face a 46-per-cent tariff and sheep meat could be tariffed as much as 61 per cent. Welsh farmer Wyn Evans - seen at top on his farm this past January - says the results could be 'catastrophic.' Because of the difficulty of growing crops in the rugged Welsh countryside, farmers in the country are highly dependant on sheep, some of which are seen on Mr. Williams's farm, above.


Anxiety is increasing all over Wales as Prime Minister Boris Johnson, seen above during a campaign event in the country last July, pushes Britain toward an Oct. 31 deadline to leave the European Union. ASSOCIATED PRESS

High-flying Seahawks ahead of their ETA
Seattle's rebuild is already paying off as 4-1 team gets set for the hyped Browns
Saturday, October 12, 2019 – Print Edition, Page S5

The Seahawks were supposed to be continuing their retooling project this year, one season after their remake helped get them back into the playoffs. Instead, they have one of the NFL's best records.

The Browns were pegged (hyped?) to be a budding powerhouse with all of the improvements in talent, plus the predicted maturity of Baker Mayfield in his second pro season. Instead, they are perhaps the most inconsistent team in the league, with Mayfield struggling.

Seattle (4-1) is at Cleveland (2-3) in a most intriguing matchup Sunday.

A Seahawks victory, combined with a 49ers loss to the Rams, would put Seattle on top of the tough NFC West. But it's difficult to figure out which Browns squad they will face: Will it be the team that won in Baltimore, or the team that was blown out last Monday night in San Francisco?

"I don't think it was my best assignment as a teacher," Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said of assigning his players to watch Browns-49ers. "The game didn't work out. I was hoping it was going to be a real battle. The game kind of got lopsided, so it wasn't as beneficial. It's still really good to see the guys. You hear the stories about the players and the backgrounds. The guys will come in here today much more familiar with them because of that. In that regard, it's always helpful. Too bad it wasn't a better game."

Will it be a better performance by the Browns on Sunday?

"We have done it before," running back Nick Chubb said. "After every loss we have, we came back harder. That's what I expect this team to do every time. Hopefully, we can stack some wins, but I know when we do face adversity, we bounce back harder."

Week 6 began with the New England Patriots' 35-14 victory over the New York Giants. Rookie quarterback Daniel Jones and the Giants (2-4) kept it close, trailing by a touchdown midway through the fourth quarter, but a forced fumble by Jamie Collins led to a TD that gave the Patriots a cushion. New England forced four turnovers and Tom Brady had two touchdown runs and moved ahead of Peyton Manning for second place on the NFL's career passing yards list. The Super Bowl champions are 6-0 for the first time since 2015.

Off this week are Buffalo (4-1), Chicago (3-2), Oakland (3-2) and Indianapolis (3-2).

SAN FRANCISCO (4-0) AT LOS ANGELES RAMS (3-2) The other two contenders out west; isn't that delightful for this long rivalry?

The Rams have lost two in a row as their defence has sprung leaks. The Niners came off their bye and routed Cleveland.

San Francisco is off to its first 4-0 start since 1990. The only 5-0 starts for the franchise since joining the NFL are 1990, 1984, 1952.

They won the NFL championship in the 1984 season.

A key for the Rams' defence is stopping the 49ers early in the second half; they have scored a touchdown on the first possession after the break in all four games this season. Slowing down the running game would help: San Francisco ran for 275 yards against Cleveland and leads the NFL with 200 yards rushing a game.

For L.A., the most efficient offence has come through the air.

The Rams are the only team with three receivers with more than 325 yards receiving: Cooper Kupp, Brandin Cooks and Robert Woods. Kupp is second in the NFL with 41 catches and ranks fourth with 505 yards and four TDs.

HOUSTON (3-2) AT KANSAS CITY (4-1) The scoreboard might blow up from all the points these two could produce.

Houston scored the secondmost points (53) in franchise history last week against Atlanta.

Deshaun Watson, possibly the second-most exciting quarterback in the league behind K.C.'s Patrick Mahomes, has perhaps the most thrilling receiver in DeAndre Hopkins.

No slouches on defence, the Texans have forced a turnover in 18 straight games, the longest active streak in the NFL. But Mahomes has thrown 202 consecutive passes without an interception. Alex Smith has the franchise record of 312.

K.C. coach Andy Reid needs one win to reach 200 regular-season victories.

CAROLINA (3-2) VS. TAMPA BAY (2-3) AT LONDON An early riser (9:30 a.m. ET) in their second match-up of the season. The Bucs won in Carolina.

This is the first overseas regular-season game for the Panthers.

If British fans were looking forward to seeing Cam Newton, Kyle Allen has been a superb replacement. Allen has won all four career starts, three this season, with seven TDs and no interceptions, making him the first quarterback in the Super Bowl era to win his first four starts without being picked off. And the Bucs allowed more than 300 yards passing in each of the past four weeks.

Panthers RB Christian McCaffrey's 866 yards from scrimmage are the second most through five games in NFL history to Jim Brown's 988 in 1963. Pretty good company there.

PHILADELPHIA (3-2) AT MINNESOTA (3-2) Not quite the same as the Eagles' previous trip to Minnesota, when they beat the Patriots for their first Super Bowl title on Feb. 4, 2018.

Main match-up here is the NFL's No. 3 rushing offence, led by No. 2 rusher Dalvin Cook, against the best run defence. Cook trails only McCaffrey.

Last week against the lowly Jets, Philly became the first team in NFL history with 10 sacks and two defensive TDs in a single game.

NEW ORLEANS (4-1) AT JACKSONVILLE (2-3) They are not chanting "Drew Who?" in the Big Easy. At least not yet.

But Teddy Bridgewater has stepped in for Drew Brees (thumb surgery) and quarterbacked the Saints to three straight victories.

Two were against 2018 playoff teams, the Cowboys and the hated Rams, who, helped by a major officiating gaffe, beat New Orleans to get to the Super Bowl.

Bridgewater has a passer rating or 100 or higher in two of his past three road starts.

It helps to have the most productive receiver, Michael Thomas, with 45 catches and 543 receiving yards.

Jacksonville also is missing its veteran starter, Nick Foles. Rookie Gardner Minshew is one of three QBs in the Super Bowl era with a 100-plus rating and no interceptions through his first four career starts. RB Leonard Fournette seeks his third consecutive 100yard performance. He has had runs of 48, 81 and 69 yards in the past three weeks.

CINCINNATI (0-5) AT BALTIMORE (3-2) The AFC North is the only division with just one winning team, and the Ravens came up with a big win in overtime last week at Pittsburgh to grab the divisional lead.

Lamar Jackson's 11 TD passes rank second in the NFL behind Seattle's Russell Wilson (12), and Baltimore's 961 yards rushing are second most in franchise history after five games.

The Bengals are still looking for a first win under coach Zac Taylor.

They're 0-5 for the seventh time since 1990, most in the NFL over that span. This is their worst start since Marvin Lewis's team went 0-8 in 2008.

ATLANTA (1-4) AT ARIZONA (1-3-1) Kliff Kingsbury got his first victory as Cardinals coach, in Cincinnati.

But Arizona ranks 24th in pass defence, while Atlanta is third in yardage throwing the ball.

Receivers worth watching are the Cardinals' Larry Fitzgerald and the Falcons' Julio Jones, who have combined for 100 games with at least 100 yards receiving.

Jones has 51, Fitzgerald 49.

Atlanta and Arizona are tied for No. 1 with 11 forced fumbles.

TENNESSEE (2-3) AT DENVER (1-4) Speaking of turnovers, Marcus Mariota is the only quarterback to start every game in 2019 and have no turnovers. The Titans are the sixth team since the 1970 merger to have just one turnover through their first five games. They do have nine fumbles, but recovered eight, a lost muff on a punt return by Adoree Jackson is the only blot.

Denver has lost both home games on last-second field goals.

One way to turn that around would be for star linebacker Von Miller to start getting to quarterbacks. Miller has 101/2 sacks in his past 10 home games but just two this season.

DALLAS (3-2) AT NEW YORK JETS (0-4) Sam Darnold returns from a bout with mononucleosis, and the Jets were inept on offence in the three games he missed. They have played some tough teams (Philly, New England, Buffalo) and were not competitive since the opening half against the Bills in Week 1.

This is a match-up of the topranked offence against the worst.

The Cowboys are averaging 453 yards a game to 180 for the Jets.

But the Cowboys have allowed two straight opponents to rush for more than 100 yards. It has been two years since three straight opponents reached triple digits on the ground against Dallas, and New York does have Le'Veon Bell.

PITTSBURGH (1-4) AT L.A. CHARGERS (2-3) Pittsburgh has dropped its past three and eight of its past nine on the West Coast. The Steelers will start rookie free agent QB Devlin Hodges, the all-time passing leader in FBS at Samford (14,584 yards). Hodges was 7-of-9 for 68 yards after coming in against Baltimore when Mason Rudolph left with a concussion.

Chargers QB Philip Rivers did not direct a TD drive last week for only the ninth time in 224 starts.

Yet Austin Ekeler had a careerhigh 15 catches in the loss to Denver and leads the AFC in receptions with 39. Keenan Allen is second with 38.

WASHINGTON (0-5) AT MIAMI (0-4) Not a bad opponent for Bill Callahan to face as he takes over as Washington's coach. Yes, the Dolphins are coming off a bye, but all that seems to mean with the way they have been performing with a weak roster is they didn't lose.

The loser is a winner, in a way, taking the lead in the race for the top overall draft pick next April.

DETROIT (2-1-1) AT GREEN BAY (4-1) ON MONDAY NIGHT The Lions come off a bye, while the Packers come off perhaps their most impressive win in years. They ran all over Dallas, led by a different Aaron than quarterback Rodgers - Aaron Jones - who rushed for 107 yards and four TDs.

"All my family was up in the stands," said Jones, who grew up a Cowboys fan in El Paso, Tex. "I could see my brother right there. I threw him one of the balls when I scored. That was pretty cool. Just being back in Texas."

Detroit is a mere 30th against the pass, so the usual heroic Aaron in Green Bay could be flinging plenty of footballs.

Associated Graphic

Cleveland Browns running back Nick Chubb runs against the 49ers in a blowout loss on Monday night. He says the team has to come back harder. 'That's what I expect this team to do every time.'


Living next to the screech
A near-constant high-pitch steel-on-steel grind has some people's teeth on edge - and worried about property values
Friday, October 11, 2019 – Print Edition, Page H11

VANCOUVER -- Vancouver residents who live between the Commercial-Broadway and Nanaimo SkyTrain stations, near the track, say increasingly disruptive metal-on-metal noise is making their lives a misery.

For the past year or so, residents living near the SkyTrain in various locations have complained about a screeching noise that is disrupting their lives and is likely the result of an aging infrastructure that needs upgrading. TransLink is in the process of addressing complaints from those who live along the older Expo and Millennium lines with a SkyTrain noise study that was done a year ago. It found that the biggest contributor to noise is the condition of the track, amplified by faster trains. The study says that the accepted noise level for urban environments used by the World Health Organization is a decibel level of 75. A grinding steel sound registers at 110 dBA, the study says.

Until it is fixed, realtors say the screech is bad enough that it would likely affect property values, if owners tried to sell. In the meantime, residents are growing increasingly angry and frustrated as they lose sleep.

Residents don't have a problem with the usual rumbling of the trains - they say they knew what they were getting when they bought their homes near the light rapid transit line. But they hadn't counted on the rumbling to turn into a maddening prolonged high-pitched screech that can occur for days at a time, every few minutes from 5:30 a.m.

to 1 a.m., says Daina Lawrence, who lives a block away from the SkyTrain track that runs by Stainsbury Avenue in the Trout Lake area. She's complained several times to TransLink, but has yet to receive an explanation or promise of a fix.

"I'm just getting blown off.

They are thanking me for my time and forwarding my request to someone else. And I'm banging my head against the wall," she says.

When it first started in May, she was told that there was repair being done to the line and equipment was being stored on a diversion track. It meant the cars had to switch tracks and go slowly around the equipment, thereby causing the screeching.

"I have lived by the SkyTrain for almost two years and I find the sound of the train to be soothing. It doesn't bother me," Ms. Lawrence says. "The train comes by every five minutes. It becomes white noise after a while. But this was not white noise. This was grinding, screeching metal on metal. It is just awful. We're talking 20 hours a day, every four to seven minutes."

She was told the work would be done by July, so she had an end date to look forward to. However, instead of stopping, the sound only became less constant. She lives on edge and she's at home with a new baby.

They've renovated their arts and crafts house, so they have no desire to leave, but she also wonders how the price of their home would be affected by the new noise pollution if they did decide to give up and relocate.

"If this was going on when we were looking at buying this house, it would have been a deal breaker because it's so disruptive," Ms. Lawrence says.

Matthew Kowalyk, a speech pathologist who also lives on Stainsbury Avenue says the trains are getting louder. He and his wife have lived in a suite in her parents' house for the past 12 years.

"You can tell when the older trains come along because they are louder than the new ones," he says. "If you move to the airport you shouldn't complain about the planes, but if the planes are getting old and screechy you might have a thing or two to say."

The area is slated for many high-density developments and he wonders how those new residents will respond to the highpitch screech.

"I'm all for densification and making the city more livable, but I have a feeling those folks might not know what they are getting into," he says.

Mike Avery and Mark Henderson are across the street from Mr.

Kowalyk and they are only a few metres from the track, which they can see from their bedroom window.

Their biggest concern is related to the maintenance crews that work sporadically from 10 p.m. to 4 a.m. and talk loudly, shine bright lights and play music. All residents interviewed for this story say they, too, can hear the crews at work in the middle of the night. They question why they can't work during the day on Sundays or work quietly in consideration of the neighbours.

"It's super bright and super noisy," says Mr. Avery, who works in construction. "Not only does it affect my property values, but it affects my sleep. I have to be up at 5 a.m.

"I'm sure if this was the west side it would be a huge deal and somebody would do something about it."

Mr. Avery and his husband purchased the property a decade ago and knew what they were getting into, living right along the track.

"We understood this would be a thing we would have to deal with. But it's getting worse," Mr.

Henderson says. "They are doing more maintenance and they are out there constantly. Is it going to get better? Maybe not."

He worries that because the 30-year-old Expo line is going to need continuing repair and the disruption will become the new normal. They are thinking about leaving.

"We bought this 110-year-old, neglected, practically abandoned property and we spent the last eight years restoring it into a beautiful home and now we are wondering, 'Is anybody going to be wanting to buy this one day, with this in our backyard? Are we going to lose a significant amount of money because of this?' "But at the end of the day, it is our home," he adds. "And we have learned to co-exist as best we can with the noise that goes on. But yeah, we have considered just dropping it all and finding something somewhere else. We spent a lot of time and money making this our home, so it's tough. But there is a lot of development going on around us and because we are so close to the SkyTrain stations it's prime real estate. A bunch of condo developments are happening down the street, so part of us wonders what we'd do if some developer knocked on the door some day and made the decision really easy - which is not ideal, but is a consideration."

Realtor Jerome Deis, who was the buying agent for Ms.

Lawrence's house, says living near the SkyTrain does not usually affect property values. In fact, there is almost always someone willing to pay for a property that may look undesirable to others, he says, including houses next door to brightly lit gas stations, or houses on busy arterials.

Some cultures, he says, prefer to be on busy streets so they can show off their big houses. He's seen a condo in Mount Pleasant sell at the market price two years ago, even though a badly decomposed body that had been there for many months that required remediation of the unit He didn't want to disclose the address to protect the other condo owners, but it sold above asking, for $615,000.

But when it comes to major noise pollution, such as an occasional high-pitched screech, that's where most people would draw the line.

"I think it would [be a deal breaker] because anybody coming to look would go, 'What the hell is that noise? How often do you hear it?' Yes, that would probably affect the price."

A spokesperson for TransLink said that the B.C. Rapid Transit Company, which maintains and operates the Expo and Millennium lines, said that grinding of the rails had been performed in both directions through that stretch in late September. Rail grinding helps to reduce noise by smoothing the rail, "preventing friction between rail and train car wheels," the spokesperson said.

TransLink is implementing its findings of the noise study, the spokesperson said. That study acknowledges that, "a key indicator of noise impacting community livability is its potential to cause sleep disturbance." Potential fixes include maintaining worn out switches, using harder types of steel in the rails, the use of lubricants to calm vibrations, affixing dampers to the sides of the track to absorb noise and grinding the rails to smooth out rough spots. The spokesperson did not say when the Stainsbury Avenue residents could expect relief from the noise.

"It is important to keep in mind SkyTrain has been a working railway for over 30 years and there will always be some noise associated with operations," the spokesperson added.

Ms. Lawrence had also made a noise complaint to the City of Vancouver. But a City spokesperson responded that they would refer such a matter to TransLink.

Realtor Sedi Minachi is one Vancouver resident who got relief from the awful screech. She lives near Royal Oak station where residents adjacent to the SkyTrain Expo line mounted a petition to stop the noise. It seemed to have had an effect. On Sept. 23, she says, the deafening noise finally stopped, after more than a year and a slew of complaints from residents. The sound had been happening in the two blocks between Dunblane and Marlborough, just west of Royal Oak station. Despite their initial complaints, she says, nothing was done.

"We were suffering," Ms. Minachi says. "When I was collecting signatures for the petition a few of my neighbours said they had individually approached TransLink but TransLink didn't care and didn't listen to them. I told them if we act together it would be better and it worked."

TransLink had told the residents that track maintenance was continuing and the organization was conducting tests on noise levels. They said that surface irregularities may cause the screech, and in that case, they also said rail grinding would be done to help eliminate the sound.

But she believes that it was their petition and their group outspokenness that achieved the result.

"They didn't inform us when they fixed it. We noticed some workers early one morning were working and the next day there was no screeching noise," she says. "Now, everyone in the neighbourhood is happy and we are finally able to sleep at night.

"But I use the SkyTrain all the time and I've noticed in some areas the same screeching noise is happening. We weren't the only ones."

Associated Graphic

Mike Avery watches as a SkyTrain passes about 100 metres from his Vancouver home on Stainsbury Avenue. Mr. Avery says late-night maintenance workers talk loudly and play music.


She overcame racism and broke through a glass ceiling, hiring talented producers to create innovative shows such as Sunday Morning, Quirks and Quarks and As It Happens
Saturday, October 12, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B23

It was a blessing in racist disguise. In early 1942, when the federal government expelled tens of thousands of JapaneseCanadians from the West Coast of British Columbia, 18-year-old Margaret Inouye moved from her family's berry farm in Mission, B.C., to work as a domestic in Winnipeg. Her mother had trained her in the arts of sewing, Japanese-style cooking and flower arranging. The plan had been for Margaret to be sent to finishing school in Japan, so that she might become a traditional wife and raise a family in what was, until that point, an insular community. But as their world blew apart, Margaret glimpsed emancipation among the shards.

"It was one of the great adversities in her life," Ruth Lyons, Margaret's daughter, said in a recent interview. Still, "people didn't approve of this, but she always said that it was also a huge opportunity for her. Because she would say it got her out of the ghetto."

It got her much further than that. By the end of the 1940s, Margaret was in London, newly married to a Caucasian man and on her way to a pioneering career that shouldered aside racism, broke through a glass ceiling and helped to save public radio in Canada from what seemed at the time to be a likely death.

After cutting her teeth at the British Broadcasting Corp., Margaret and her young family returned to Canada, where she landed at the CBC and helped launch what became known as the Radio Revolution, hiring talented young guns and setting them free to create shows of extraordinary durability: Sunday Morning, This Country in the Morning (which became Morningside), Quirks and Quarks and As It Happens. In 2010, she was invested as a member of the Order of Canada.

"I think Margaret Lyons was arguably the most important and the most influential CBC radio executive in the past 60 years," said Peter Herrndorf, a long-time CBC executive who served as Ms.

Lyons's boss from 1979 to 1983.

And she left this world as she lived her life: on her own terms.

On Oct. 5, at age 95, Margaret Lyons underwent a medically assisted death at her home in Toronto, with her daughter and husband holding her hands.

She also leaves two sisters, as well as several nephews and nieces.

The eldest of seven children [although one died as a youngster], Keiko Margaret Inouye was born on Nov. 21, 1923, to the Japanese immigrant farmers Yoshinobu Inouye and Teru Tsuji.

Margaret grew up speaking Japanese at home, but was a voracious reader of the English-language Vancouver Province, to which her father subscribed, and she dreamed of working at the newspaper some day. She went fishing and hunting with her father, to her mother's displeasure, and was handy with the cross-cut saw.

Months after Japan bombed the United States naval base of Pearl Harbor in December, 1941, the cabinet of Canadian prime minister William Lyon Mackenzie King issued an order-in-council excluding all people of Japanese extraction from being within 100 miles (160 kilometres) of the Pacific Coast. Farms, including that belonging to the Inouyes, were seized and later sold off at fire-sale prices by a federal agency known as the Custodian of Enemy Property.

While many Japanese-Canadians worked as labourers in B.C., Margaret went with her mother and most of her siblings to Manitoba. Margaret landed a position in the house of a wealthy family as a cook and downstairs maid, while a sister served as a nanny and upstairs maid.

Still, Margaret regretted that choice. In avoiding the internment experience, she wrote decades later in a magazine published by the Nikkei National Museum and Cultural Centre, in Burnaby, B.C. "I feel that I missed a valuable life lesson, and I admire the hardy pioneer spirit of people who pulled the communities together after they had lost everything."

In 1944, Margaret left the job and travelled to Hamilton - one of the few cities in Canada where those of Japanese extraction were then permitted - to work as a chambermaid at McMaster University while finishing up her high-school diploma at night.

She then entered McMaster and began studying economics, calculating that the subject matter would give her an advantage over other aspiring journalists.

She met a fellow economics student by the name of Ed Lyons, and they fell in love.

According to Ruth, on graduation day they received their degrees, got married, had lunch and hopped on a ship for London.

For the rest of her life, Margaret felt a debt of gratitude to McMaster for offering her an education few other institutions would. She and Ed funded the Lyons New Media Centre in the university library, and sponsored a scholarship in new media. She received an honorary degree from the university in 1996.

Their daughter, Ruth, was born in 1951 and son, Erskine, followed in 1958. In 1952, Margaret landed a job as a dictation typist in the BBC's foreign newsroom and quickly worked her way from one clerk position to another before landing in the broadcaster's producer training program. She served for six years as the senior current affairs producer for Asia.

In 1957, when Lester B. Pearson visited London - the same year he won the Nobel Peace Prize - Margaret interviewed him for the BBC. "He told me that I should be back in Canada working for the CBC, not wasting my time in the BBC," she wrote.

Three years later, she, Ed, and their two children would make the leap back across the Atlantic.

Last week, Margaret told the former CBC radio and TV producer Mark Starowicz that she had hoped to get into the CBC's nascent television service when she returned to Canada.

But TV was a men's-only club at the time, so she had to content herself with radio: She landed a job as a public affairs producer, turning out long-form documentaries.

Within a few years, she became a supervisor and began hiring scores of talented - if sometimes rough-hewn - producers and on-air journalists: Mr. Starowicz, a newspaperman with an anti-authoritarian streak who had been fired by the Toronto Star and ended up in charge of As It Happens, then Sunday Morning and finally CBC-TV's The Journal; Barbara Frum, who had been dropped from the suppertime TV news show but seemed a perfect fit for As It Happens as it went five nights a week; Stuart McLean; Peter Gzowski; Michael Enright.

In the mid-1970s, she hired a 19year-old named Ivan Fecan to create a pop science show called Quirks and Quarks, hosted by the rising star David Suzuki. (Later Mr. Fecan oversaw the creation of such shows as The Kids in the Hall and Road to Avonlea.)

Some wag dubbed the group of young upstarts "Lyons's Kindergarten." Margaret was their diminutive den mother. A 1982 newspaper profile gives her height at 4 feet, 101/2 inches, but she was a commanding presence.

"I remember this conclave of males surrounding her," Mr. Starowicz said. "There would be this clarinet-like voice: 'I want you to do this.' And these hulking males who towered over who would go do her bidding."

"She was arguably the greatest talent developer that CBC radio had ever seen," Mr. Herrndorf said. "She was kind of a contrarian. She looked for people who weren't the conventional obvious choices.

"She and the people who worked with her and after her were responsible for the programming that has defined CBC radio for half a century," he added. "And she was just a ferocious defender of public broadcasting, which isn't about selling things.

In Margaret's mind, it was about getting to know the country, getting to know its history, its values, its aspirations, its rhythms and it was about giving Canadians the kind of information they needed to make thoughtful choices."

Ms. Lyons had a mandate to shake things up: When she took over, ratings for the AM and FM radio services had fallen to perhaps a share of 4 per cent; the bulk of listeners were over 50.

"This place is boring, boring, boring," Mr. Starowicz says she told him. She chased young audiences, introduced more pop music into the rotation and slashed long-form documentaries. She introduced a new mantra: "Presentation is as important as content."

Her changes alienated many.

In 1978, Val Clery, the original executive producer of As It Happens, wrote an op-ed in The Globe and Mail calling himself "one of Margaret Lyons's early victims," and complaining about her "remote, patronizing attitude to listeners. The same philosophy, that hype and packaging are more important for boosting audience figures than content, has permeated current affairs programming also."

After Margaret became the managing director of radio for CBC's English-language division in 1981, the Toronto Star columnist (and CBC broadcaster) Clyde Gilmour noted she was not only "the top woman at the CBC," but also "one of the highest-ranking female executives of any broadcasting system in the world."

Even Margaret's supporters spoke of her in language that now feels of a distant era: Newspaper profiles frequently noted that she was known inside CBC as "the Dragon Lady." Margaret insisted the nickname didn't bother her.

Still, there were private struggles, and immense pain that she hid from all who knew her. Her son, Erskine, battled personal demons and died by suicide in 1985, in his late 20s. And her daughter, Ruth, acknowledged last week that it took years of therapy before she could love her mother. "I think probably her work was in many ways her life. I personally feel that if she were a generation or two younger, she would have said, 'To hell with having a family, I'm just going to pursue my career.' " After Margaret's death, though, Ruth praised her for living "with courage."

She also had a cheeky sense of humour. Mr. Starowicz recalled that at one point Margaret's office was next to the studio occupied by the famously idiosyncratic pianist Glenn Gould.

"He would practise so loudly - I can only assume it was the speakers - that Margaret would thump on the wall to get him to lower the volume. And I said, 'You would thump on the wall to get Glenn Gould to turn it down?' And she said, 'Yeah! You couldn't hear yourself think! We couldn't do a program!' And, as you know, in Gould's recordings, you hear breathing, and humming, and tapping. And on some of them, I wondered: Is that Margaret in the studio next door, thumping?"

Associated Graphic

Margaret Lyons helped to launch what became known as the Radio Revolution during her time at the Canadian Broadcasting Corp., where she aimed to make CBC radio less 'boring' by chasing younger audiences, introducing more pop music and slashing long-form documentaries.

MLB needs to welcome Shoeless Joe back
Late White Sox player's memory was marred by the team's throwing of 1919 World Series - but a century's banishment is long enough
Thursday, October 10, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B21

GREENVILLE, S.C. -- In a different time, it was an attractive little two-bedroom home, constructed in the early 1940s out of red brick and owned by one of the greatest players ever to grace the diamond, a towering yet tragic figure who lived the last half of his life and went to his grave as a pariah, shunned and scorned by the national pastime.

Now it's a museum, right across the street from Greenville's retro minor-league ballpark, dedicated to preserving the memory of the man who once lived within its walls.

Shoeless Joe Jackson.

"It is one of the greatest stories," says Michael Wallach, who leads the museum's board of directors. "So many of the baseball players in the Hall of Fame, their story is their career. Joe has three parts to his story: before, during and after. All three are romantic stories."

Growing up in a Southern mill town without a day of formal schooling.

A brilliant baseball career that was snuffed out in its prime.

The life he built after being kicked to the curb by the game he loved.

Even now, on the 100th anniversary of the Chicago White Sox finishing off their infamous throwing of the 1919 World Series to the Cincinnati Reds, stamping themselves for eternity as the Black Sox, Shoeless Joe stirs up harsh feelings and fierce debate about his place - or, more accurately, non-place - within the game.

Well, this is not a plea to exonerate a man who surely made some awful mistakes.

It is a call for compassion.

Jackson's century-long banishment is long enough.

Say it's so, Major League Baseball.

Put Shoeless Joe back in the game.

"God knows I gave my best in baseball at all times and no man on earth can truthfully judge me otherwise."

The highfalutin words, plastered on the side of the Shoeless Joe Jackson Museum, might ring hollow to those who know him largely as the most prominent of eight White Sox players who allegedly conspired with gamblers to lose a World Series.

To this day, it remains baseball's greatest stain (sorry, Steroids Era).

On Oct. 9, 1919, Chicago completed the shameful deed with a 10-5 loss in Game 8 of the best-ofnine series, handing the championship to the Reds by a margin of five games to three.

White Sox starter Lefty Williams did his part in the decisive contest by giving up four straight hits after getting his lone out, putting his team in a four-run hole before it ever came to bat. With three losses in three starts, there is little doubt about his guilt. Ditto for first baseman Chick Gandil, shortstop Swede Risberg, pitcher Eddie Cicotte, centre fielder Happy Felsch and utility infielder Fred McMullin. Third baseman Buck Weaver is a more complicated figure, apparently aware of the plot but not taking part.

Then there's Shoeless Joe.

While there are conflicting accounts as to what he acknowledged, Wallach concedes that Jackson accepted US$5,000 from the gamblers and was fully aware of the scheme. But his performance on the field largely seems to back up the claim Shoeless Joe made for the rest of his life.

He played to win in 1919.

Jackson batted .375 with a Series-record 12 hits - a mark that stood for 45 years. He hit Chicago's only homer (this was at the end of the dead-ball era) and led his team with both five runs and six runs batted in. He struck out just two times in 32 at-bats, handled 30 chances in the outfield without an error, and was posthumously figured in the sabermetrics world to have tacked on 0.58 wins (known as win probability added, or WPA) to his team's total. That was the second-highest total for any player in the Series, surpassed only by teammate Dickey Kerr, who wasn't in on the fix and won both his starts with a 1.42 ERA.

"If Joe Jackson was throwing the World Series," Wallach scoffs, "that was not the way to go about it."

Even though all of the Black Sox were acquitted at a celebrated 1921 trial, baseball moved quickly to remove a scourge that threatened its very existence.

Gambling and fix allegations were as much a part of the game as balls and strikes, so the owners appointed former federal judge Kenesaw Mountain Landis to clean things up. Despite the courtroom verdict, the powerful new commissioner banned all eight players for life - a harsh edict that stands to this day.

Wallach actually has no problem with Landis's decision.

"Baseball was going to fall apart if Kenesaw Mountain Landis did not come in and say, 'There will be no cheating in baseball,' " Wallach says. "Now, would I have forgiven Joe before his life was over? I think so. Why? Because that's who America is. America does not hold a grudge if someone shows remorse and asks for forgiveness."

Jackson, who couldn't read or write, relied on his wife, Katie, to fire off letters pleading for his reinstatement. All were ignored. He actually received two votes in balloting for the initial class to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1936 and was still getting a modicum of support a decade later, but has been formally barred from any consideration under rules passed in the wake of Pete Rose's banishment from the game.

Jackson died in 1951, three weeks before Christmas at the age of 63 (or perhaps 64), in what was a small bedroom but now houses various artifacts related to his life.

A wooden seat from Comiskey Park. A set of dishes. A battered old glove. Even a picture of the white-haired Landis, staring back sternly from the great beyond.

Wallach disputes the notion that Shoeless Joe died a broken man. He hated being known as a cheater but played in the minor leagues into his 40s, sometimes under an assumed name, or with outlaw teams that weren't governed by organized baseball. He owned a liquor store and a dry cleaning business, while his wife invested in real estate and probably would've been called a house flipper in today's world. The couple never had any children but seemed to live a comfortable, generally happy life.

They are now buried side-byside in Woodlawn Memorial Park, not far from their home-turnedmuseum. There are no signs pointing out their gravesite in the sprawling cemetery, but everyone seems to know where it is. Avid fans, who perhaps view Jackson through the sympathetic prism of movies such as Eight Men Out and Field of Dreams, still leave baseballs and cleats and bats around the simple bronze gravestone.

When someone arrives in search of Shoeless Joe's resting place, all they need do is ask a worker on the grounds.

"Joe Jackson's grave? You mean Shoeless Joe?" one drawled when this intrepid reporter came in search of it not too long ago. "It's right over there."

Time supposedly heals all wounds.

Yet, even if Jackson's ban is lifted, it seems highly unlikely he would ever get into the Hall of Fame.

Without a change in the rules, the Baseball Writers of America couldn't vote him in even if they wanted to, while the committees that take a second look at overlooked candidates would surely be reticent about altering the verdict of history.

Former commissioner Bud Selig was adamant in his opposition to Jackson's reinstatement, but his successor, Rob Manfred, seems more amenable to recognizing Shoeless Joe.

Not reinstatement by any means. But baby steps nonetheless.

At Fluor Field, home of the South Atlantic League's Greenville Drive, they now have a statue of Jackson right outside one of the main gates and a large picture of him in an area known as Heritage Plaza. Next year, MLB will construct a temporary stadium in that Iowa cornfield made famous by Field of Dreams, the movie that portrays the ghost of Shoeless Joe emerging from the tall stalks to take part in one more game with other long-gone players. The New York Yankees will play an actual regular-season game against ... the White Sox.

Jackson's team.

"There is a groundswell of support growing for Joe Jackson," Wallach insists. "We're going to make sure that name stays in the forefront of baseball history."

There is little doubt that Jackson was one of the game's greatest players.

He batted .408 one season and finished with the third-highest career average (.356), a number that now adorns the address of his museum - 356 Field St. He could also hit for power within the constraints of the dead ball, not to mention run, field and throw. Today, we'd call him a five-tool player.

"I want people to know what a wonderful ballplayer he was," Wallach says wistfully.

The Shoeless Joe Jackson Museum is run on a shoestring budget by a small group of faithful volunteers. The hours are skimpy.

Saturdays only, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. But bigger plans are in the works.

Wallach's son, Dan, will soon be moving from Chicago to run the museum full-time, with an eye toward expanding both operating hours and its mission in the community. The museum will also be moving - literally, as workers take the entire house to a spot just up the street, clearing the way for a new development at its current (and actually second) location.

The home was brought in from its original spot three miles away to coincide with the opening of Fluor Field in 2006.

As part of this latest move, the museum will get a new gift shop - check out the "Reinstate Shoeless Joe Jackson" T-shirt - and open up more space for exhibits.

Shoeless Joe may never get into the Hall of Fame. But he deserves at least a mention in Cooperstown, some remembrance of his entire body of work and not just those eight infamous games a century ago.

"It's a tragic story," Wallach says. "But we have ways to fix tragedies."

Yes, we do.

Major League Baseball, say it's so.

Welcome back Shoeless Joe.

Associated Graphic

Michael Wallach, seen Sept. 29, leads the board of directors of the Shoeless Joe Jackson Museum and Baseball Library and says Shoeless Joe's story is 'one of the greatest.'

A statue of Shoeless Joe Jackson stands in front of Fluor Field stadium in Greenville, S.C., on Sept. 29.


How the Tiger-Cats have clawed their way to the top of the CFL
A rookie head coach, an offensive co-ordinator who got the job days before training camp and losing your starting quarterback, running back and receiver early in the season isn't usually the recipe for greatness, but grit, grime and a star-making performance by a backup pivot has Hamilton looking to bring home the Grey Cup for the first time since 1999, Rachel Brady writes
Saturday, October 12, 2019 – Print Edition, Page S3

The Hamilton Tiger-Cats are close to accomplishing something no team from the CFL's East Division has done in a decade: finish the regular season as the best squad in the league.

Don't look now, but the Tiger-Cats are a CFL-best 12-3 in mid-October. With three games left on their schedule, they have a chance to end a 10-year streak of West Division teams topping the league standing.

It is enough to inspire hope in Hamilton, a city that hasn't won a Grey Cup since 1999. Perhaps most impressively, the Ticats are persevering without star quarterback Jeremiah Masoli.

For five of the previous six seasons, the Calgary Stampeders finished with the best regular-season record. The last team from the East to finish with the year's finest regular season was Anthony Calvillo's dominant 2009 Montreal Alouettes, who went 15-3 and went on to win the Grey Cup.

The 2019 Ticats are a perfect 7-0 at home.

Before this weekend's games, they led the CFL in most points scored (459) and fewest points allowed (288). The Tabbies are 8-2 against West opponents - including wins over all five teams and series sweeps of B.C., Winnipeg and Edmonton.

This is Hamilton's first 12-win season since 1998 and it has already matched a franchise record, with games against Ottawa, Montreal and Toronto still to go in a division in which it holds a 4-1 record. A few teams could still catch the Ticats for the CFL's best record, led by West-leading Saskatchewan. If the Ticats clinch first in the East, it gives them a bye into the division final, which would be in Hamilton.

You could be forgiven if you didn't seen this coming for Hamilton. It has had only had two winning seasons in the past decade - 10-8 finishes in 2015 and 2013.

A string of events early this season could easily have derailed the team. Offensive co-ordinator June Jones left for another job just days before camp, leaving rookie head coach Orlondo Steinauer to quickly replace him with Tommy Condell. Starting Canadian running back Sean Thomas-Erlington suffered a knee injury just four weeks into his breakout CFL season. Veteran receiver Luke Tasker was in and out of the lineup with injuries. Then Masoli's season ended in the team's sixth game, when he planted awkwardly while eluding a defensive tackle in the pocket and tore the anterior-cruciate ligament in his left knee.

Masoli had the Ticats off to an exciting 4-1 start when it happened. The 31-year-old was in the thick of following up a 2018 campaign in which he got the nod as the East's candidate for the CFL's most-outstandingplayer award. Then suddenly, less than a third of the way through his season, Masoli was headed for knee surgery and he was scratched from the team's plans for the year.

"It was a huge blow. Jeremiah was the leader of our team," Steinauer said this week by telephone as his Ticats enjoyed a bye. "It was a classic case of things not going to the original plan. So how do you adjust mid-stream at a professional level?

That's a credit to our coaching staff. Our players bought in to what we were selling - everyone has to be ready to play all the time, because things can happen in an instant."

With their franchise pivot unable to play another down, the Ticats' fate rested with 25-year-old backup quarterback Dane Evans, a native of Sanger, Tex., who had just a handful of CFL appearances to his résumé. The University of Tulsa product had entered the NFL draft in 2017, but didn't get selected. He got a shot in a Philadelphia Eagles training camp, but they released him that preseason. He then signed with the Ticats and had been kicking around as a backup in Hamilton since, perhaps upstaged by the brief hoopla surrounding the 2018 CFL stop-through by Johnny Manziel.

Evans did have a vaguely familiar experience from which to draw. During his redshirt freshman year at Tulsa, the starting quarterback suffered an injury that was to sideline him for two games. Evans started those two college games and played well enough to keep the job even after the starter got healthy. He remained Tulsa's starting QB all the way through his senior year.

Evans took over for Masoli during Hamilton's July 26 game against Winnipeg.

The Ticats won. Since then, the new pivot with red facial hair peeking out from his facemask has gone 7-2 as the Tabbies' starter.

Sometimes the Ticats have leaned on a committee of running backs in Sean Thomas-Erlington's absence, including Maleek Irons, Cameron Marshall, Bralon Addison and Tyrell Sutton. Other times, they have spread the field wide and let Evans throw it all over, especially to targets such as Addison and Brandon Banks, who each have more than 1,100 yards receiving. The Ticats didn't need to adjust too much without Masoli. They could call many of the same plays.

"Dane had put in the work last year on scout team and he was still here for a reason. He's a natural leader who is so easy to follow because he's really authentic," Steinauer said. "We let Dane grow at his own pace and we didn't compare him to Jeremiah. We let him play through mistakes. He could make all the throws, but there were fine fixtures and footwork that he and Tommy worked hard on. The biggest box Dane is checking is that we're winning."

After a few weeks of recovery from surgery, Masoli has come back to the team in a supporting role. Still wearing a knee brace, he is in meetings and picks his spots to use his respected voice. Evans says the two men still room together on the road, as they did before Masoli got hurt.

"We talk about the game plans in our room. It's very good for me to have a guy who has been there," Evans said by phone from California where he spent the bye week. "We bounce ideas off each other and he doesn't withhold anything. I was actually excited to watch him [play] all season and that all changed in the blink of an eye. I still don't want to overstep my boundaries, even though now it is my job to go give my team the best chance to win. I know it's really tough on him, but he's being the ultimate teammate right now. I can attest to that first-hand." Hamilton's defence and special teams have been stout, even as the offence worked in its new starter. Linebacker Simoni Lawrence tops the CFL in total tackles (83, despite missing two games because of suspensions for illegal hits) - including 17 tackles in Week 16, a CFL single-game record. Defensive end Ja'Gared Davis is second in sacks (12). The Ticats rank No. 1 in big-play returns with 19, flanked by Frankie Williams and his CFL-leading 786 kick-return yards.

Evans has picked up steam with time, improving his accuracy and cutting down on his ratio of touchdowns to interceptions. He and Addison were both chosen as the CFL's top performers for the month of September.

The 1999 Grey Cup-champion Ticats were honoured in Hamilton before the team went on to trounce Edmonton 42-12 last week. One of the defensive stars of that '99 team, Rob Hitchcock, had his name added to the Wall of Fame at Tim Hortons Field. He and his championship teammates met with the current Ticats that night. Together, they watched video highlights of that memorable Tiger-Cats squad, one on which Steinauer had been a standout defensive back.

"So we saw Coach O in this video, making interceptions and knocking people around. It was so cool to see that such a humble guy had such a huge role on that '99 team," said Evans, who admits he watched a few CFL games on ESPN as a teen, but didn't follow the league avidly before coming to Canada. "Coach never toots his own horn; he just works. Our team is like that, too."

The Tabbies will clinch top spot in the division - along with a first-round playoff bye and the right to hold the East final - if Montreal loses on Friday night against Calgary.

The Ticats were in the Grey Cup in 2013 and 2014. Both were losses - first to Saskatchewan, and then to Calgary. Some players from those teams remain, including Lawrence, Banks and veteran Canadian linemen such as Mike Filer on offence and Ted Laurent on defence. Steinauer had been a defensive co-ordinator for those teams.

Going into this season, Steinauer was also pursued by B.C. and Toronto to fill their head-coaching positions. Hamilton head coach last season - June Jones - agreed last December to move over and be the offensive co-ordinator if Steinauer would remain with the Ticats and become head coach. The gesture humbled 45-year-old Steinauer. (Later, in May, Jones left the Ticats to become head coach and general manager of the Houston franchise in the reborn XFL).

"I know the city of Hamilton wants a team with a tough blue-collar mentality and I'm really grateful for the opportunity to lead," Steinauer said.

Ticats fans have watched seven of the nine CFL teams win the Grey Cup since their team last hoisted it in 1999. Evans has only been in Canada since 2017, but he has quickly become accustomed to Hamilton's passionate fans. Watching the '99 champs get recognized served as a reminder of how much the Ticats faithful crave the Cup.

"For sure, fans who come to our games are loyal and loud. They have filled our stadium no matter what our record was," Evans said. "They've gone a long time without a Grey Cup, so we owe them one." 459 Heading into this week's games Hamilton leads the CFL in most points scored 288 The Tiger-Cats also have allowed the fewest points this season.

Associated Graphic

Hamilton Tiger-Cats quarterback Dane Evans throws against the Winnipeg Blue Bombers during a game last month. Evans has helped lead the Ticats to a 12-3 regular-season record.


Through the eyes of the law
Memoirs from a former chief justice offer insight into the lives of those who reshape our country's values - on abortion, refugee determination, assisted dying and more
Saturday, October 12, 2019 – Print Edition, Page R15

Her goal was simple: to tell the story of an ordinary person's extraordinary life, in the hopes of inspiring young people, particularly young women.

And yet Beverley McLachlin's autobiography, Truth Be Told: My Journey Through Life and the Law, was a long time coming. In the 144-year history of the Supreme Court of Canada, the memoirs published last month by its retired chief justice were the first such book from one of its judges.

By contrast, two of the nine judges currently on the United States Supreme Court have published autobiographies, and two others works with an autobiographical component. Some of these authors, such as Sonia Sotomayor and Ruth Bader Ginsburg, have become folk heroes.

Even in the United Kingdom, whose staid legal culture resembles Canada's own, Supreme Court judges have been publishing memoirs and diaries in recent years.

Why have Canada's top judges been so leery of writing their memoirs?

It's not as if they have no stories to tell. These are important people who have used their authority to reshape the country - on abortion, refugee determination, crime and punishment, gay marriage and assisted dying, to name a few.

Since 1982, when the Charter of Rights and Freedoms took effect, judges have had the authority, just as their U.S. counterparts do, to strike down laws they deem unconstitutional. Who they are and how they exercise their power might interest Canadians.

But the legal culture has yet to catch up.

Most Supreme Court judges in Canada are unknown to most Canadians. And mostly, the judges seem to like it that way. They give lots of speeches, but mostly "in-house" to lawyers' groups and law students. When Justice Nicholas Kasirer was nominated in August, he would not even consent to having his photograph taken by this newspaper.

In anonymity, there is less of a public spotlight on one's judicial choices.

Legal observers fear that if Canada goes even partly down that road, the appointment of judges will become "politicized," as in the U.S.

"We can learn from the United States," historian John English, former general editor of the Dictionary of Canadian Biography, said in an interview, "but maybe some of the traditions we hold to are ones that are worthy of upholding."

What are the benefits to the public of a judicial autobiography? It demystifies the legal system. It takes readers inside a structure that shapes the country's history - and preserves details that might otherwise be lost. And - as McLachlin aspires to doing - it connects with young people.

All these benefits can be seen in the memoirs of U.S. Supreme Court justices.

Sotomayor conceived of her story much as McLachlin did: as an inspiration to young people.

She is the first Hispanic member of the U.S. Supreme Court (her parents were Puerto Rican), and she overcame a difficult childhood in a South Bronx housing project. After her literary and engaging 2013 memoirs, My Beloved World, for which she received a US$1.9-million advance, she published two children's books as companion volumes. Far from the figure of a remote Supreme Court judge, she would answer children's questions at readings and the children would give her hugs.

The beautifully written autobiography of Justice Clarence Thomas, My Grandfather's Son ("I was nine years old when I met my father," he says in the book's opening line), is a powerful and angry work in part about growing up black in the U.S. South. He also rails against allegations of sexual harassment from law professor Anita Hill, raised in his 1991 nomination hearing. He received an advance of US$1.5-million, a measure of the intensity of reader interest.

James O'Hara, an officer of the Supreme Court Historical Society, a private, Washington-based group that seeks to preserve the court's history, calls the books by these two judges required reading, especially for young people.

"The books are remarkably encouraging to kids who face really bad difficulties," he said in an interview.

And for readers generally, he said, the books help humanize the court.

"They both show that the Supreme Court is not something that is merely political. In both cases, they show that the court is made up of thinking people, who have a real concern for the future of their country and the value of the law."

There is a revealing moment in McLachlin's autobiography. Halfway into her first decade as Supreme Court chief justice, she reports a "eureka" moment: "The people of Canada viewed the chief justice as their chief justice."

Somehow, until then, she'd thought of herself only as chief justice of a court.

Cogs in an institutional wheel do not write autobiographies.

And for a judge to be personal - to be seen to have pre-existing views - might be seen as being political. "There's this desire of the old-fashioned lawyers that the law be seen to have come down from heaven," says Peter Russell, an emeritus political science professor at the University of Toronto, "ready-made, with no human input, no human creativity."

By contrast, he says, "Americans were the first judicial realists," recognizing that judges make law, rather than simply apply it. And more than anywhere else, he says, U.S. Supreme Court judges are "superstars" in national history. "And they see themselves as superstars."

Not so in Canada, where a tradition of personal restraint persists.

"Judicial restraint will suck the oxygen out of most of the stuff judges could write if they felt free to do so," former Supreme Court justice Ian Binnie (1998-2011) said in an e-mail.

McLachlin is frank about personal episodes - suicidal thoughts at the age of 13, a dying husband asking her to end his life - but restrained in discussing legal issues and her peers. It is as if she is still wearing the cloak of her former office. (She was chief justice from 2000 to 2017, and joined the court in 1989.)

In the one instance where she removes that cloak - describing how she was tempted to name her dog "Harper" after the prime minister with whom she tangled, so she could say, "Sit, Harper" - University of Saskatchewan College of Law professor Michael Plaxton slammed her on Twitter.

"Selling your book is not worth casting a pall over your legacy or the institution of the Supreme Court," he tweeted.

Authors of U.S. judicial autobiographies may not write tell-all books, but some do offer sharp criticisms of their colleagues.

The late John Paul Stevens published his second set of memoirs, The Making of a Justice: Reflections on My First 94 Years, in May. He pulled no punches in criticizing majority rulings on the right to bear arms, election-financing restrictions and, to his mind worst of all, Bush v. Gore, the 2000 ruling that ended a Florida recount and gave the presidency to George W. Bush.

They also don't shy away from politics. Earl Warren, who was U.S. chief justice in 1954 when the court ruled against segregated schools in Brown v. Board of Education, reported a private conversation he had with president Dwight D. Eisenhower at a White House dinner, while Brown was before the Supreme Court.

"These are not bad people," his 1971 book The Memoirs of Earl Warren quotes the president as saying of Southerners who supported segregation.

"All they are concerned about is to see that their sweet little girls are not required to sit in school alongside some big overgrown Negroes." His report of the conversation added to the historical record.

"The legal culture is oral, and dies with the lawyers that lived it," Binnie said, explaining why he thinks more judges and lawyers should write their memoirs.

It is Britain, with its tradition of judicial anonymity, that has been the predominant influence on Canadian judges. But now, U.K. judges are beginning to find their voice. Late this summer, retired Supreme Court justice John Dyson published an autobiography, A Judge's Journey, recording his harrowing family story - his maternal grandmother survived the Holocaust - and giving readers a window into his loneliness when he first joined the Supreme Court, where he felt that at least some of his colleagues "wrote judgments to impress each other and to win over colleagues to their point of view. I may have been guilty of this myself."

David Hope, the U.K. Supreme Court's deputy president, has published three volumes of his diaries, with a fourth set to come out this year, covering his Supreme Court years.

"He was revealing in several places, and sometimes too revealing," Alan Paterson, a professor at the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow, said in an interview.

"He will sometimes make remarks about a fellow justice." In 2015, Peter Millett, a retired judge who had been on a predecessor court (the U.K. Supreme Court was established only in 2009), published his autobiography, a humorous, insider's take, As in Memory Long.

The autobiographies are part of a broader trend toward greater accessibility. The U.K. Supreme Court has been on Twitter for several years; it has begun holding hearings outside of London in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. It even has a program to permit schoolchildren to Skype with Supreme Court judges. Following the lead of its British counterpart, the Canadian Supreme Court held two hearings in September in Winnipeg and its members visited high schools there.

Still, judges on the Canadian Supreme Court appear to take comfort in being largely unknown.

It's not all of them who appreciate the anonymity, says John Major (1992-2005), but "a significant number, because it's a pretty good cloak. You don't want to sit around constantly reading criticisms. To read about yourself, you want it to be something nice."

When he was on the court, he was recognized just once or twice on Ottawa streets. "You'd be lucky if you're recognized at a bar [association] convention."

Why doesn't he write his memoirs?

"I've always thought I could write a book. I have the material," he said.

"But if I told the truth, I'd hurt so many people's feelings that I'd feel bad."

U.S. political scandal marks blow to Ukraine's corruption reform efforts
Tuesday, October 15, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A5

The fight over President Donald Trump's potential impeachment has divided the United States along party lines, Democrats versus Republicans, with Ukraine being talked about as the scene of a crime.

Many Ukrainians, however, feel their country is the victim in all this - not just because of the way Mr. Trump spoke to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in the now-infamous July 25 phone call, but also because of the way their country's name and reputation has been dragged through the middle of the United States' political conflict.

Government officials worry about the effect that the scandal, and the incessant headlines connecting "Ukraine" and "corruption," will have on their attempts to promote the country as a safe place to invest. Anti-corruption activists - who have long held the U.S. up as an example of clean governance - worry that their fight to clean up Ukrainian business and politics will lose momentum as the sight of prominent Americans taking cash from dubious figures in Ukraine tarnishes the U.S.'s reputation here, too.

Much of the drama, ironically, revolves around one of the West's signature efforts to help fight corruption in Ukraine.

The National Anti-Corruption Bureau - known locally by its acronym NABU - was founded by the Ukrainian government in the heady days after the country's 2014 revolution, which saw the corrupt and Kremlin-backed regime of Viktor Yanukovych ousted after days of bloody street battles.

NABU was given the task of tackling high-level corruption in Ukraine, the kind that had persisted since it was part of the Soviet Union. NABU is funded by the U.S. and the European Union.

Crucially, NABU was created to be independent from the office of Ukraine's prosecutor-general.

That put NABU - and its backers inside the U.S. embassy in Kyiv - at odds with the political elite who were swept to power by the revolution. While the crowds who had overthrown Mr. Yanukovych wanted to see a corruption crackdown, the politicians they elected had complicated histories of their own. The new president, Petro Poroshenko, was one of the country's most powerful businessmen and had briefly served in Mr. Yanukovych's cabinet.

Acrimony quickly developed between NABU, which sought to investigate how billions of dollars had disappeared from Ukraine under Mr. Yanukovych's rule, and the prosecutor-general's office, which proved willing to cut deals with figures from the former regime.

The power struggle between Ukraine's two main corruptionfighting bodies would end up playing a role in a pair of scandals that have dominated much of Mr.Trump's time in the White House.

It was NABU that originally discovered, in a Kyiv office that had once belonged to Mr. Yanukovych's Party of Regions, a ledger detailing US$12.7-million in payments that the party had made to Paul Manafort, a onetime adviser to Mr. Yanukovych who later briefly served as Mr.

Trump's campaign chief. The ledger was treated as a key piece of evidence by former special counsel Robert Mueller's probe into the 2016 presidential election, and Mr. Manafort is now serving a 7½-year prison sentence in the U.S. on charges that include fraud related to the receipt of the Party of Regions funds.

That was one of NABU's few headline-grabbing successes.

More often, the agency found itself blocked - often by the prosecutor-general's office - in its efforts to expose corruption at the top of Ukrainian politics. A gas company called Burisma came to define the struggle between NABU and the country's political elite.

When Mr. Yanukovych was ousted, the oligarchs who had supported him were suddenly vulnerable. One of them, Mykola Zlochevsky - who owned Burisma at the same time as he served as Mr. Yanukovych's minister of ecology and natural resources - began stacking Burisma's board of directors with prominent figures in what anti-corruption activists say was a blatant attempt to polish Mr. Zlochevsky's reputation. Among those Mr. Zlochevsky recruited were then-U.S. vicepresident Joe Biden's son, Hunter, as well as Aleksander Kwasniewski, a former president of Poland.

Court records show Hunter Biden was paid US$50,000 a month by Burisma from April, 2014, until he left the post earlier this year.

There is no evidence of any criminal wrongdoing on his part.

The prosecutor-general's office has opened at least five investigations into Mr. Zlochevsky or the company since 2014, although three have been abandoned and none has developed into a prosecution. A letter in December, 2014, from the office of then-prosecutor-general Viktor Shokin - stating that Mr. Zlochevsky was not under active investigation - helped the oligarch gain the release of US$23-million that had been frozen in Britain as part of a money-laundering probe.

Olena Halushka, head of international relations for the Anticorruption Action Centre, a Kyivbased non-governmental organization, said three successive prosecutors-general, including Mr. Shokin, had "systematically delayed" the Burisma investigations.

Frustration with Mr. Shokin was also widespread among Western diplomats. But it was a March, 2016, visit to Ukraine by Mr. Biden - who ran the Ukraine file in Barack Obama's administration - that had the most dramatic effect, causing Mr. Poroshenko to fire Mr. Shokin and replace him with long-time ally Yuriy Lutsenko. "If the prosecutor's not fired, you're not getting the money," was how Mr. Biden recounted delivering the message to Mr. Poroshenko's government.

Mr. Biden was addressing a 2018 meeting of the Council on Foreign Relations, a Washington think tank, and referring to US$1billion in loan guarantees the U.S.

government provided to Ukraine.

While anti-corruption activists believe Mr. Biden was right to call for change in the prosecutor's office, they say his efforts were tainted by his son's role at Burisma. "Joe Biden, the vice-president, was going around saying corruption in Ukraine was a cancer, while his son is on the board of Burisma," said Olena Tregub, head of the Independent Defence Anti-Corruption Committee, the Kyiv affiliate of Transparency International. "It might not be corruption, but it was hypocrisy at least."

The tension between NABU and the prosecutor-general's office ultimately came to a head during Mr. Lutsenko's tenure. A politician with no formal legal training, Mr. Lutsenko tried to position himself as the anti-corruption champion of Ukraine. But anti-corruption activists say he obstructed NABU's work at every turn. At one point, his office publicized the names of undercover NABU officers, foiling a long investigation.

A key point of contention would become the financial and political support that NABU received from the U.S. embassy in Kyiv, and in particular from thenambassador Marie Yovanovitch.

The embassy became publicly critical of Mr. Lutsenko. Mr. Lutsenko, it's now known, started campaigning for Ms. Yovanovitch to be replaced.

In January, Mr. Lutsenko flew to New York to meet with Mr.Trump's personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani. Mr. Lutsenko told The Globe and Mail he made the trip to propose to Mr. Giuliani that the U.S. and Ukraine jointly investigate investigate whether Mr.Biden had pushed for Mr. Shokin to be fired in order to protect Burisma, as well as allegations that the Ukrainian embassy in Washington had sought to damage Mr.Trump during the 2016 election by leaking details of the Manafort ledger mid-campaign.

Mr. Lutsenko said he decided to visit Mr. Giuliani after failing to convince the U.S. embassy in Kyiv of the need for a joint investigation into Burisma and the Manafort affair.

The meeting between Mr. Lutsenko and Mr. Giuliani set in motion a chain of events that saw Ms. Yovanovitch recalled to Washington in April. She hinted in her opening statement to a congressional committee last week that she believed Mr. Lutsenko had played a role in her ouster.

In her statement, Ms. Yovanovitch defended the U.S. embassy's anti-corruption drive in Ukraine, saying it had been in the interest of both countries. "Our efforts were intended, and evidently succeeded, in thwarting corrupt interests in Ukraine, who fought back by selling baseless conspiracy theories to anyone who would listen. Sadly, someone was listening, and our nation is the worse off for that."

Asked about allegations that he was personally corrupt, Mr.

Lutsenko - who was fired as prosecutor-general in August - told The Globe that "yes there are political tools and instruments" that were used by his office but that Ukraine saw a "record" number of corruption convictions while he was in the post. "There is no court conviction against me," he added.

(Mr. Lutsenko is now under investigation by his old office for abuse of power. Mr. Giuliani's dealings in Ukraine are under separate investigation in the U.S.

to determine whether any laws were broken.)

After Ms. Yovanovitch's dismissal came the notorious July 25 phone call, which saw Mr. Trump pick up on the themes Mr. Lutsenko had raised with Mr. Giuliani. Although the President didn't name Mr. Manafort, he said that Ukraine's role in the 2016 election should be examined. "They say a lot of it started with Ukraine," Mr.

Trump told Mr. Zelensky. "Whatever you can do, it's very important that you do it if that's possible."

He also leaned on the newly elected Mr. Zelensky to investigate Burisma, holding up US$319million in military aid to Ukraine as he did so. A whistle-blower's complaint about the call has sparked the impeachment hearings against Mr. Trump.

A struggle for power in Ukraine had merged with America's own fevered political war.

Today, all sides say they have high hopes for the new government of Mr. Zelensky, who, similar to nearly all of his recent predecessors, came to office promising to fight corruption.

Ukraine has actually made some progress since the revolution - it ranked 120th out of 180 countries on Transparency International's corruption perception index last year, a climb from 144th in 2013.

"The problem is changing the perception," said Dan Bilak, chairman of UkraineInvest, government investment-promotion agency. It's a problem that's worsened, he said, in the current media environment. "You never get criticized for saying or writing something bad about Ukraine."

For federal parties, Vancouver region offers big rewards
The voters of Surrey, Burnaby and Richmond switch allegiances often, and it's anyone's guess where they'll turn come election day
Saturday, October 12, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A18

VANCOUVER -- With an area about four times the size of the United Kingdom, there's no denying British Columbia is a big province. But the fight for votes in B.C. largely centres on the many seats packed into a relatively small, crowded part of the province.

Federal leaders are spending a lot of B.C. campaigning time in the Vancouver region that is home to about half of B.C. residents. That region, comprising cities such as Surrey, Burnaby, New Westminster and Richmond, and others out into the Fraser Valley, has 26 of the province's 42 seats.

It's also been hard to predict which way they might swing.

"In the other provinces, there are fairly traditional trend lines," says pollster Nik Nanos, chief data scientist and founder of Nanos Research. However, he describes a "spaghetti trend line" of intermingling party support in B.C.

that confounds predictions in the province. "In the case of British Columbia, the four parties are clustered much closer together than in any other province," Mr.Nanos says.

In the 2015 election, the Liberals won 17 seats, up from two in 2011. The Conservatives lost 11 seats, ending up with 10 in B.C.

The NDP won 14 seats, up from 12 in 2011. Green Party Leader Elizabeth May won in the Vancouver Island riding of Saanich-Gulf Islands.

BRITISH COLUMBIA, WHERE ANYTHING CAN HAPPEN Petros Kusmu, during a break from an environment-focused, all-candidates meeting he helped organize in Vancouver-Granville, says he has been struck by the shifting nature of B.C. politics since he moved from Alberta to the West Coast 10 months ago.

"In Alberta, there's a far greater degree of predictability electorally, federally than there is in the Lower Mainland or even B.C. I was surprised how much it seems like B.C. is up for grabs," the 30-yearold management consultant said.

"It's a bit more exciting here electorally, which makes it, for a voter, far more exciting as well, because you get the sense that your vote is really going to help actually swing things."

Mr. Kusmu, a resident of Vancouver Centre and self-described progressive voter, said he has yet to decide whom to vote for as he researches candidates.

After an all-candidates meeting in Vancouver Kingsway six days after the campaign began, Guy Rivard, the pastor at a Catholic church across the street from the meeting venue, spoke of a political journey he has taken since voting Conservative in Quebec City in 2015. His new riding's incumbent, New Democrat Don Davies, first elected in 2008, is facing challengers including former Vancouver news anchor Tamara Taggart, now running for the Liberals. Justin Trudeau, the Liberal Leader, attended her acclamation as a candidate and made an early stop in the riding.

Though impressed by Mr. Davies, Mr. Rivard said he plans to vote Green to signify the need for action on climate change. "The Conservatives are the Conservatives. They are not interested in climate change," he said. "The Liberals are obviously interested in selling oil, which makes no sense."

The environment looms large among issues of concern in the Pacific province. A survey commissioned by the Greater Vancouver Board of Trade says the key issue for voters is whether parties can demonstrate they can balance protection of the environment with protecting jobs, and addressing the high cost of living.

"If you just read the headlines, you would think that everybody in Vancouver is against the Trans Mountain pipeline, and certainly people in the city of Vancouver and Burnaby are leaning against it, but across the Metro Vancouver region we do find more support than opposition," said Evi Mustel of the Mustel Group, which conducted the survey.

"Our message was [the parties] have to balance both the need to protect the environment, as well as to ensure that we have a viable economy. They can't go too far.

One extreme or the other. They really need to have a platform that addresses both those issues effectively."

There are issues beyond the pipeline. B.C. is grappling with an acute opioid crisis and some of the highest housing costs in the country. The mayors of the province's two largest cities - Vancouver and Surrey - are looking for billions of dollars for transit expansion.

Jody Wilson-Raybould, who broke with the Liberal government over the prosecution of SNC-Lavalin on corruption charges, may have become known across the country after she told her story in Ottawa hearing rooms, but she is a familiar figure in the Lower Mainland as the incumbent MP for Vancouver-Granville, where she is now seeking reelection as an independent.

B.C. is where key policies of Mr.

Trudeau's government have become tangible, according to political scientist Allan Tupper. "[Federal Liberal] messages have been quite important given what's going on on the ground in [a] very visible way," the University of British Columbia academic says.

THE LOCAL FACTOR Beyond the issues, three of the major national political leaders have strong ties to the province.

Ms. May and Jagmeet Singh of the NDP are incumbents in ridings in the province: Ms. May on Vancouver Island and Mr. Singh, who got his start in elected politics as a member of the Ontario legislature, won Burnaby South in a by-election earlier this year.

Mr. Trudeau has spoken of B.C.

as a second home. His mother's family is from B.C. and he relocated to the province in his 20s, when he worked as a snowboard instructor and, eventually, a teacher. The remains of his youngest brother, Michel, were never recovered from a remote Interior lake. Mr. Trudeau regularly vacations in the province.

On Oct. 21, B.C. could provide seats to re-elect the Liberals to a majority government, or put either the Liberals or Conservatives behind the wheel of a minority government. B.C. voters could help bolster an NDP resurgence.

While the Greens are running candidates across the Vancouver region, their national campaign manager, Jonathan Dickie, says the party is focused on winning on Vancouver Island, home base for their two incumbents.

British Columbia, especially the Vancouver region, counts for a lot in the election, says Shachi Kurl, executive director of the Angus Reid Institute, a not-for-profit, public-opinion research foundation.

"British Columbia, by virtue of the fact that Metro Vancouver is one of the largest population bases in the country, does take on an enhanced role in a way that 40 years ago it didn't, or even 20 years ago, it didn't," she said in an interview.

Since the election was called, Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer has visited four Vancouver-region ridings, all seats with Liberal incumbents that were previously Tory-held seats. Mr. Trudeau, in the same region, has campaigned in seats with Liberal incumbents and gone on the offence in Vancouver Kingsway - Mr. Davies's riding. During an eight-day swing through the Vancouver region and Vancouver Island, Mr. Singh hit a mix of Vancouver-region ridings with NDP and Liberal incumbents.

On Friday, Mr. Trudeau was scheduled to campaign in Surrey, Port Coquitlam and Burnaby, promoting the campaigns of a mix of incumbents and new candidates, including the candidate competing against Mr. Singh in Burnaby South. Meanwhile, Mr. Scheer was scheduled to release the Conservative party platform in Tsawwassen, south of Vancouver. Each party faces key challenges here, Ms. Kurl says. The Liberals need to galvanize the youth vote that helped them in 2015. The Conservatives need to figure out how to build their base to compete in cities. And the Greens need to expand their caucus, an effort that may be bolstered by elected Greens in the B.C. Legislature and Vancouver city government.

As for the New Democrats, she said they have the benefit of support from legislature members who comprise the B.C. government. Since 2017, the province has been governed by the NDP under Premier John Horgan and supported by three members of the provincial Green Party who hold the balance of power in the legislature.

Glen Sanford, B.C. director for the federal NDP campaign, says there's a strategic calculation that B.C. voters supportive of the job Mr. Horgan and his team are doing may consider supporting federal New Democrats in the province.

The Liberals are speaking bullishly of holding their seats from 2015 and picking up others by focusing on their appeal to the interests of the middle class, and underlining Mr. Trudeau's connections to the province. Conservatives are also wooing the middle class and playing on disappointment with Mr. Trudeau.

To the Green Party, there's political opportunity in British Columbia's fluid political situation.

"What we're seeing in most other provinces is that it's clear that there's one party that is starting to pull ahead. In B.C., it seems like the numbers are shifting quite a bit, but that the four major parties are in play, and so there's likely lots of ridings where there are three or four-way races," Mr.Dickie said in an interview.

"At this point, if the election was now, it would be very hard to determine the outcome in a number of ridings," he said. "The opportunity for us is that we can come up the middle in some three- or four-way races. The downside of that is that's hard to predict."

To the Greens, the provincial legislature members as well as Greens on Vancouver's city council, school board and parks board, are a positive case for electing federal Greens.

"For voters, it makes their federal Green candidate seem much more viable," says Mr. Dickie, adding the Greens believe they have prospects on Vancouver Island.

Associated Graphic

Clockwise from top left: Conservative Andrew Scheer, Liberal Justin Trudeau, Elizabeth May of the Green Party and New Democrat Jagmeet Singh make stops in British Columbia on the campaign trail. Each party leader faces key challenges in the Vancouver area, which contains 26 of the province's 42 seats and about half of its population.


Ex-Crown corporation CEO says minister failed to resolve conflict of interest
Thursday, October 17, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A4

OTTAWA -- The former head of a Crown corporation responsible for awarding defence construction contracts is accusing a senior Liberal cabinet minister of failing to resolve a conflict of interest created after the head of a construction company was appointed as chair of the organization.

In a lawsuit filed earlier this month, James Paul, the former chief executive officer of Defence Construction Canada (DCC), says Public Services and Procurement Minister Carla Qualtrough appointed Moreen Miller as chair in November, 2017, despite concerns raised by him and the five independent directors charged with arranging procurement for military infrastructure projects.

Mr. Paul says in the lawsuit that DCC's five independent directors resigned in a mass protest last year, citing what they considered insufficient action taken by Ms.Qualtrough to address a conflict of interest surrounding the newly appointed chair, Moreen Miller, who was president of Fowler Construction Co., an Ontario paving and construction company that had performed DCC contract work.

Mr. Paul further alleges that one of Fowler's owners, Bill Graham, a former Liberal defence minister, and a defence policy adviser to the Trudeau government, would have been aware of the benefits of having an executive from his construction company on the board of DCC.

"Mr. Graham therefore has inside knowledge of the opportunity that Defence Construction Canada's work presented for Fowler and the benefit to Fowler of Ms. Miller being appointed chairperson," Mr. Paul's lawsuit said.

Mr. Paul, who led DCC for 10 years before the Liberal government decided not to renew his appointment in the summer of 2019, says in the lawsuit that he and the independent directors were concerned about safeguarding DCC from accusations of conflict in its procurement process.

Mr. Paul said what compounded their concern was that Ms. Miller said her company intended to continue to pursue DCC work even while she was chair of the Crown corporation. In his lawsuit, he notes that Mr. Graham is a shareholder of Fowler.

Mr. Graham's last cabinet portfolio, in 2006, was National Defence, and he was an adviser on the Trudeau government's 2017 defence policy review.

Before she took over at Fowler in 2014, Ms. Miller was CEO of the Ontario, Sand and Gravel Association. The Ontario Liberal government appointed her as Commissioner of the Niagara Escarpment Commission, where she served from 2004 to 2016.

Premier Kathleen Wynne's government also named her to the Ministry of Labour's Ontario College of Trades Appointments Council.

The disagreement about the appointment played out over a 10-month period starting in November, 2017, when the Trudeau government named Ms. Miller as chair of DCC, until September, 2018, when she stepped down as Fowler's president while remaining chair of the Crown corporation.

In April, 2018, after consulting with DCC's five independent directors, Mr. Paul suspended Fowler from bidding on contracts.

Mr. Paul alleges that in the weeks and months that came after, senior bureaucrats in Ms. Qualtrough's department pressed him to reverse the suspension.

This included a letter from an associate deputy minister questioning whether DCC had the authority to suspend Fowler. None of the allegations have been proven in court.

The five independent directors, who were appointed by the former Harper government, resigned on June 8, 2018. Their terms had expired, but they were serving until the federal cabinet appointed replacements. The Liberal government - which has a record of long delays in making order-in-council appointments - announced new board members on June 11.

Mr. Paul's lawsuit says the dispute made him a target of Ms. Miller's wrath and resulted in Ottawa's decision to reject his application to serve a third five-year term as CEO.

His lawsuit seeks $1.5-million in damages from the government for allegedly "targeting [him] for removal ... as a reprisal for pursuing the conflict of interest issue."

Ms. Miller declined comment on the allegations in the lawsuit when contacted by The Globe and Mail. A veteran of the construction industry, Ms. Miller said she has never been a shareholder of Fowler.

Brian O'Neil, a spokesman for Mr. Graham, confirmed to The Globe last Friday that the former Liberal minister is an owner of Fowler Construction, but said he plays no role in the management.

A spokeswoman for Ms. Qualtrough said the government intends to vigorously defend itself against the Paul lawsuit and denied any wrongdoing.

"The suggestion that appointments were directed by other considerations is completely false," press secretary Marielle Hossack said in an e-mail. "Similarly, there is no truth to allegations of pressure from Public Services and Procurement Canada.

As the government's contracting authority, the department's involvement in this matter primarily focused on ensuring that DCC's decision to suspend companies from bidding on contracts would not expose the government to legal risks."

Ms. Hossack said executives in government positions are not "automatically guaranteed a new term" and added "appointees are selected based on merit, and in this situation, a more suitable candidate was identified." Mr. Paul was replaced by Derrick Cheung, a former executive with B.C.-based TransLink.

Mr. Paul told The Globe that on advice of counsel, and given the legal proceedings, he would not comment publicly.

His lawsuit says in the weeks and months that followed Ms. Miller's appointment, the directors and Mr. Paul discussed potential solutions to the conflict of interest with the new chair.

The directors and Mr. Paul argued that it was a conflict for Fowler to bid on contracts while its president was DCC chair and that this could open the Crown corporation to legal challenges from other bidders, the lawsuit says. They were further concerned Ms. Miller would not recuse Fowler Construction from bidding. They wanted Ms.

Qualtrough to rescind the appointment or instruct Ms. Miller to resign as president of Fowler.

Mr. Paul's lawsuit alleged Ms. Miller made it clear to him and the board in January, 2018, she did not see the need for her to leave Fowler or her company to cease bidding on DCC work. She "stated that she would not remove herself from her position at Fowler and that Fowler intended to continue bidding on DCC business."

Ms. Qualtrough, shortly after appointing Ms. Miller, wrote one of the DCC directors to say she had "taken note of your concerns" and suggested seeking advice from the federal ethics commissioner.

In February, 2018, the independent directors at DCC wrote federal Ethics Commissioner Mario Dion asking for advice, according to the letter, which was obtained by The Globe along with other documents.

At the same time, Ms. Miller also wrote to the ethics commissioner for advice in the matter. In her letter, obtained by The Globe, Ms. Miller stated: "Fowler has been a subcontractor to contracts that DCC has procured in the past and intends to continue to bid on contracts in the future."

She also told Mr. Dion that Fowler "does not let any information about DCC's contracts and/or related subcontracts be shared with me."

The five independent directors were not convinced, and instructed Mr. Paul to suspend Fowler from bidding on any DCC contracts, the lawsuit says. "From this point forward, Ms. Miller became highly aggressive toward [me] in her communications," the statement of claim says. He suspended Fowler from bidding on April 20, 2018.

In May, 2018, an associate deputy minister in Ms. Qualtrough's department, Michael Vandergrift, wrote to Mr. Paul questioning his decision to bar Fowler from pursuing contracts, saying "this action to suspend bidding privileges of a company is of concern" to the government.

In the meantime, the Ethics Commissioner informed the DCC directors in a letter that a measure called a "conflict of interest screen" was required to "prevent a conflict of interest situation arising between Ms. Miller's official duties and her private interests at Fowler Construction."

Under such an arrangement, administered by another person in an appointee's office, files that present a potential conflict of interest are not brought to the subject's attention.

Mr. Dion in his letter said he could not advise the five independent directors on how to manage "reputational issues" for the DCC and "what options are available to board members who are not comfortable with the measures put in place."

In their letter to Mr. Dion, the independent directors had expressed concern that, as DCC chair, Ms. Miller would still have access to information her company's competitors would not know and that the appearance of a conflict of interest was as serious as a real one.

On June 8, 2018, the five independent directors, citing the public services and procurement minister's "failure to adequately deal with the conflict of interest," resigned in protest, the lawsuit says.

Director John Boyd said in his resignation letter that the measures taken to date were not adequate. "In regard to public and industry perception, I do not believe [it] is sufficient."

Fellow board member Lori O'Neill said the conflict of interest "diminishes DCC's integrity and its ability to effectively deliver its mandate."

After Ms. Miller resigned as Fowler's president in September, 2018, the suspension of bidding privileges was lifted.

Mr. Paul's lawsuit alleges the government's failure to reappoint him for another term was punishment for raising these concerns.

DCC handles construction contract management and infrastructure for the Department of National Defence, including the new $1.2-billion headquarters of the Communications Security Establishment electronic spy agency in Ottawa.

In response to questions from The Globe, the federal government provided two affidavits filed in the case, including one from Alison Lawford, the corporate secretary at DCC, that said the conflict screen ensured that Ms. Miller did not participate in discussions or decisions with DCC officials that might have benefited Fowler.

A second affidavit, from Jayne Huntley, a special adviser to the Privy Council Office, said the selection process that replaced Mr. Paul was "open, transparent and merit-based." She said Mr. Paul's interview performance when he reapplied for the job was "notably less substantive than that of other candidates." Mr. Paul was praised in 2017 by Auditor-General Michael Ferguson and MPs on the House of Commons Public Accounts committee for his management of DCC.

Federal parties have been all too happy to avoid a serious debate about reforming the system this election. But if human-rights violations aren't enough to stir them, perhaps a pocketbook time bomb will
Saturday, October 12, 2019 – Print Edition, Page O3

Toronto-based freelance journalist

On the list of issues to be raised in this mad dash of a federal election, it's perhaps understandable that the state of Canada's prisons is pretty low. Indigenous people are still waiting for clean drinking water, provinces continue to fight over pipeline projects, climate change alters best-laid plans and a housing crisis and potential economic recession are leaving urban Canadians nervous.

Amidst all that, why would voters care about the treatment of criminals? Besides, aren't poor conditions in jails a feature, rather than a bug? The logic has long been that if you don't want to face that kind of miserable treatment, just don't commit crimes.

But the conditions of our system reflect a humanitarian crisis lying in wait, laden with systemic rot.

"The Service continues to assume the risk of running prisons without 24/7 health care coverage," Ivan Zinger, Canada's Correctional Investigator, wrote last year. The year prior, in his meticulous annual report, he wrote that at one Alberta institution, "I witnessed outdoor segregation 'yards' that were actually cages, easily mistaken for a dog run or kennel." Long-suffering former correctional investigator Howard Sapers filed his last report the year before that, finding that guards were increasingly using force and pepper spray in dealing with inmates who had attempted self-harm or suicide.

Going back through years of these reports is like reading a meticulous and galling laundry list of concerns: poor food quality; wild abuses of solitary confinement; low prison pay and the rising costs of basic essentials; systemic racism; a failure to help inmates with serious mental-health issues; slashed programming due to lack of funding.

Many of these problems are only magnified in provincial institutions, which often have to house inmates awaiting trial.

The age of the prisons themselves contribute to those outcomes; some are more than 100 years old. "They were built at a time when the correctional philosophy was very different than what it is today," Mr. Zinger said in an interview.

Lockdowns have become a daily part of life inside these prisons. In Ontario's Maplehurst prison, lockdowns were ordered, on average, every other day over a two-year period. Those lockdowns limit the inmates' ability to shower, get clean bedding, see family or lawyers and exercise.

There's a race problem, too.

While the Criminal Code recognizes that the courts should opt for alternatives to imprisonment whenever possible, especially for Indigenous offenders, that has not happened in reality. Nearly a quarter of the prison population is Indigenous, despite being less than 5 per cent of the national population. The problem is more acute in the Prairies, where recidivism rates are staggering. "It is at a crisis point, right now," Mr.

Zinger says. A lack of co-operation with Indigenous peoples, and a lack of culturally informed programming, has made reintegration hard and the problem worse.

One of the more obscene examples of Correctional Services Canada's (CSC) practices has been solitary confinement. Troublesome or at-risk inmates - especially former cops, informants and those suffering from mental illness - are thrown in a tiny, one-person cell, for long stretches of time. Inmates are allowed just one hour of outside time and one hour of human contact a day. Sometimes, they don't even get that. That practice fits the United Nations definition of torture.

But perhaps that's still not enough to shake you. After all, it was in the 2011 election that hapless Liberal leader Michael Ignatieff made the Harper government's construction of "U.S.-style megaprisons" a campaign concern; voters seemed actively bored by the suggestion.

There is one thing that all Canadians care about, we're often told: costs, and the financial ramifications they have on our government and our families. If that's the case, then you should know this: Our prison systems are also a ticking fiscal timebomb.

CSC, the federal government's 15th-largest department or agency by funding, already costs $2.4billion to run. But that budget has been flat over the past decade, in real dollars. At the same time, staffing numbers have grown. There is now roughly one CSC staff member for every inmate in Canada, Mr. Zinger said, and in many institutions, there are more staff than inmates.

That money has to come from somewhere.

Support services, addictions counselling and job training were the first to go, eliminating useful programs to assist with reintegration and skills development to re-enter the work force.

Without that, what happens?

"They reoffend," Edmonton criminal-defence lawyer Tom Engel said. "Surprise, surprise."

In its defence, Ottawa points to prison labour programs as a primary service by which inmates are being prepared for life outside. But that, too, has been turned into a cost-cutting exercise. Most prisoners with jobs are either hired to perform tasks to help run the prisons, such as cleaning, or to make goods for other government departments, which are then sold for some $60-million a year. Both efforts keep CSC's costs low, saving them from having to pay outside staff and helping them make back money at the margins.

The maximum salary is $6.90 a day; most earn less. What's more, up to 30 per cent of that salary is clawed back for, among other things, room and board.

Yes, they're actually paying to be in jail.

Prison labour was also supposed to provide a way to earn money to buy goods that would make prison more bearable, save money for prisoners' release and send money to their families. Increasingly, that is not the case.

Costs at the prison canteens, where prisoners need to buy soap and other basics, have skyrocketed, with some goods costing double what they would outside. Phone calls can be expensive, too. A 60-minute non-local call can cost a day's wage, which is particularly troubling as most inmates are not imprisoned in their own communities.

As programming and services have declined, conditions inside have gotten worse. And for inmates facing inhumane conditions at the hands of Corrections Canada, Mr. Engel said, "there's only one route to take: Go to court."

They're succeeding. Two challenges in Ontario and British Columbia succeeded in having the courts declare the solitary-confinement system unconstitutional. Lawsuits on behalf of mentally ill prisoners who were thrown in solitary confinement, and those who were placed in the tiny cells for longer than 15 days at a time, both succeeded: The courts ordered Ottawa to pay $20-million in damages in both cases. And two inmates from Maplehurst sued for a breach of their Charter rights and won; the court awarded the pair tens of thousands of dollars in damages.

While an appeals court later reversed their compensation, more applications of that type are all but certain to come in the future.

After being told by the courts to end solitary confinement, and after seeking multiple extensions to that ruling while it dragged its feet on a solution, the Trudeau government's answer was to convert the solitary confinement wings to "segregated intervention units," at a cost of about $50-million a year. Under this new system, there will be no cap on the length of stay in these units, and it only increases inmates' time outside their cell to four hours a day. Critics including the Canadian Civil Liberties Association say the new rules constitute "the bare minimum required to address the Charter violation inherent in the existing scheme," and when the government killed a series of amendments designed to strengthen oversight, experts such as Senator Kim Pate argued that, in failing to fix this process, "we put the onus of going back to court to once again challenge the use of isolation on those directly and negatively impacted by segregation - prisoners." In short, it is likely that these new rules will be taken to court, and they will be struck down, too.

More legal challenges will come. Those challenges cost huge sums in legal fees, and have already forced Ottawa to pay out millions in compensation to prisoners thus far - and the federal government remains open to limitless liability. In a 1996 report, Justice Louise Arbour even argued that the courts should consider reducing inmate sentences' based on their treatment in prison.

Once upon a time, Justin Trudeau recognized this. In a mandate letter, he asked the Attorney-General and Justice Minister to "end appeals or positions that are not consistent with our commitments, the Charter or our values."

Ever since, the Trudeau Liberals have been deadly silent on the matter. And Andrew Scheer's Conservatives have put forward farcical policies to address the issue, campaigning on revoking parole for "gang members" and implementing new mandatory minimum sentences.

Other parties are better. The NDP platform commits to reducing the overrepresentation of Indigenous and black offenders.

The Greens have called for an end to mandatory minimum sentences. Only the Greens have pledged money to improve services in prisons.

This needs to be a campaign issue. Prison conditions have become abject - dissonant from what we expect of ourselves, in our image as Canadians - and fixing that will cost money. But investment now, as well as work to reduce the prison population - namely, by eliminating mandatory minimum sentences and expanding supervised community programs - will vastly reduce prison costs, keep people in their communities and save Ottawa from costly legal challenges in the future.

Government after government has been warned about this looming disaster, but because it's not a winning electoral issue, addressing it has become an even more urgent priority today.

"Something's got to change," Mr.

Zinger warns. "Something bold has got to be done." And yet good luck finding a party that will give voice to this simmering crisis.

That's a lose-lose situation for Canadians, both free and incarcerated.

Associated Graphic

A view of a segregation cell at Joyceville medium-security institution in Kingston.


A First Nation's intergenerational poisoning
Decades after Grassy Narrows learned its fish were contaminated with mercury, research suggests damage is being passed down through families. On the campaign trail, activists are pressing for action
Thursday, October 10, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A12

FIRST NATION, ONT. -- For years, Chrissy Isaacs watched her grandfather struggle with the symptoms of mercury poisoning. He was a fisherman and a guide, his health damaged by the contaminated fish he ate.

Today, she worries about the fourth generation of his descendants. Her daughters, 18 and 13, are showing signs of neurological issues she believes are linked to the same mercury contamination that has devastated her community.

Generation after generation, Grassy Narrows First Nation has seen its crisis painfully prolonged. It has been almost 50 years since the revelation its fish had been poisoned by tonnes of mercury dumped into its river system by a paper mill owned by Reed Paper Ltd., in the Northern Ontario city of Dryden.

Recent studies by Montrealbased scientist Donna Mergler have found strong evidence - from umbilical-cord blood tests and community surveys - confirming the mercury damage is persisting from mothers to children.

Children at Grassy Narrows are four times more likely to suffer from learning disabilities or nervous-system disorders if their mothers had regularly consumed fish during their pregnancies, one study found. (Dr. Mergler, professor emerita at the University of Quebec at Montreal, was the lead scientist in the studies, which were commissioned by Grassy Narrows First Nation.)

The crisis has emerged as a federal election issue, raised by candidates and audience members at national and local candidate debates since the beginning of the campaign. Activists have urged the party leaders to commit to building a treatment centre and hospice at Grassy Narrows for the victims.

In Toronto, thousands of people chanted, "Justice for Grassy Narrows" during a march for action on climate change in late September, and the mercury issue was debated again by candidates for the riding of Toronto Centre in early October.

This week, at the first Englishlanguage debate of the federal leaders, NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh complained that Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau had mocked a Grassy Narrows supporter at a fundraiser, while Mr.

Trudeau insisted that "money is not the objection" in the delays to the treatment-centre project.

A specialized medical clinic, with staff who understand the complexities of mercury poisoning and how to diagnose the syndrome, could be crucial for the people of Grassy Narrows. Without it, they must travel for treatment in Kenora or Thunder Bay or Winnipeg, where doctors often wrongly assume their neurological or mental symptoms are due to alcohol abuse, Ms. Isaacs says.

"The doctors don't really know much about mercury poisoning and they come up with different diagnoses," she told The Globe and Mail, speaking on the stairs outside her small home.

"A lot of people end up being treated for unrelated issues," she said. "A lot of times we hear negative comments in the hospitals, claiming that our issues are due to drinking."

She recalls her grandfather, in his dying days, saying he dreamed of getting care in his own community. But he died before the treatment centre could be built.

Now, at 39, Ms. Isaacs says she hopes it will be built in time for her own treatment. Tests showed she was born with a dangerously high level of mercury in her blood. She suffers tingling and numbness in her hands and feet, and she is sometimes too weak to open a jar or a bottle. Like many people here, she is plagued by depression and anxiety.

"There's a worry that the treatment centre is not going to happen and people will have to keep struggling to get help," she said.

The federal government promised in 2017 that the treatment centre would be built, but Grassy Narrows leaders have accused Ottawa of delaying the project by offering only $10-million, far short of the $19.5-million budget recommended by a federally funded study.

Indigenous Services Canada has pledged to fulfill its twoyear-old promise. "We will get this facility built," spokesman William Olscamp told The Globe last month. "We will continue discussions on this with community leadership until we reach a consensus."

But with an election campaign under way, there is no guarantee the next government will fulfill the current one's promise. The people of Grassy Narrows are increasingly fearful that the treatment centre will never be built.

(Conservative election campaign officials did not respond to questions from The Globe about the party's position on the centre.

The NDP has spoken out strongly in support of the project, and on Saturday Mr. Singh visited the community. Grassy Narrows Chief Rudy Turtle is the NDP candidate for Kenora.)

Almost half a century after the mercury dumping began, a study by a Japanese scientist in 2010 found that 59 per cent of the residents he examined were showing signs of mercury poisoning in both Grassy Narrows and nearby Whitedog First Nation.

Only a small fraction of them were receiving compensation payments.

The provincial Environment Ministry is currently investigating new reports of historical mercury dumping, after a former employee raised concerns about buried barrels of waste.

Gary Wheeler, a spokesman for the ministry, said a field assessment was conducted at the alleged location and test results from a well at the site were reviewed. So far, there are no indications of mercury dumping, Mr. Wheeler said, adding that officials are assessing how best to investigate other locations.

"The ministry takes the concerns expressed by the former employee very seriously, and we recognize the importance of determining if there are buried barrels of mercury at the Dryden industrial site," he noted.

Bill Fobister, a 73-year-old former chief of Grassy Narrows, says he hopes to move into the treatment centre if it is built by the time his own mercury-poisoning symptoms require it.

He has seen too many elders dying in hospitals in distant places, far from their families and ancestors.

"Our elders die because they're lonesome," he told The Globe. "If they had a home here, it would alleviate some of the loneliness."

Mr. Fobister's family is an example of how mercury's effects have persisted from generation to generation.

In the 1960s, from the age of 14, he worked as a fishing guide for U.S. tourists in the river near his home, eating a "shore lunch" of freshly caught walleye every day.

Today, his eyesight is impaired by a worsening tunnel vision, his senses of taste and smell have been damaged, and his hands and legs tingle, as if "jabbed by little pins," he said.

He receives a monthly $350 payment from a mercury-disability fund.

But now, he sees the younger members of his family with similar symptoms.

"I think mercury has killed our immune system," he said. "If there's a sickness, we catch it right away. I see it every day.

Young people in their 40s and 50s are dying."

His granddaughter, Betty, is in a wheelchair. She, too, receives compensation from the mercury board. Because there is no treatment centre in Grassy Narrows, she is obliged to live in a foster home in Fort Frances, about 280 kilometres away, where she can get physical therapy.

In the 1970s, Mr. Fobister travelled to Japan and met victims there of mercury poisoning, widely known as Minamata disease because it was first identified in the Japanese city of Minamata in 1956. He saw that the victims had impaired speech and clenched hands - the same symptoms he sees in his granddaughter.

"She's very fragile and crippled, and she can't talk either," he said. "I'd like to see her more often, but it's very hard. She is quite far away."

Mr. Fobister's cousin, Steve Fobister, was a former chief of Grassy Narrows who suffered from mercury poisoning and died last year. And now Steve's grandson, 22-year-old Darwin Fobister, has the same symptoms.

He suffers from headaches, seizures, asthma, memory loss, depression and numbness in his limbs.

"I feel it's getting worse," he told The Globe. "I twitch for no reason sometimes and I get scared. I shake when I try to sleep. I'm scared to take a shower because my balance is affected and I could fall."

He and his mother are both receiving compensation from the Mercury Disability Board, which was created under federal and provincial legislation to administer compensation from the two governments and two pulpand-paper companies. But a treatment centre in Grassy Narrows would save lives, he says.

He is growing weary of visits to doctors in distant towns who know nothing about mercury poisoning. "They just give you Tylenol."

With a report from Renata D'Aliesio in Toronto

Associated Graphic

Top: Fish in the Grassy Narrows river system were poisoned after mercury was dumped in by a nearby paper mill. Above: Chrissy Isaacs, 39, seen with her grandson at her home on the First Nation, says she hopes a treatment centre will be open by the time she needs it for her own poisoning.


Top: A large drum greets visitors on the road to Grassy Narrows. Without a treatment centre nearby, patients with mercury-related symptoms must travel to Kenora, Thunder Bay or even Winnipeg. Middle: Darwin Fobister, 22, suffers from headaches, seizures, asthma, memory loss, depression and numbness in his limbs, and feels his symptoms are 'getting worse.' Above: Children on the First Nation are four times more likely to suffer from learning disabilities or nervous-system disorders if their mothers regularly ate fish during their pregnancies, a study found.

Bill Fobister, 73, is a former Grassy Narrows chief who worked as a fishing guide for U.S. tourists along the river in his teens. His mercury-poisoning symptoms include worsening tunnel vision, impaired senses of taste and smell and tingling in his hands and legs.


While some steps have been taken to protect transnational adoptees, more must be done, writes Jenny Heijun Wills
Saturday, October 12, 2019 – Print Edition, Page O1

Jenny Heijun Wills is the author of Older Sister. Not Necessarily Related, which was recently shortlisted for the Hilary Weston Writers' Trust Prize for Nonfiction

Phillip Clay was an adoptee, like me. We were part of the same wave of transnational adoption from South Korea, but whereas I arrived in Southern Ontario in 1982, he landed in Philadelphia the following year. We both hailed from Seoul, an electric capital city that today is one of the most densely populated places in the world. We both returned, under different circumstances, to that land that now seems so foreign, years after being away. He was 8 when he met his white adoptive parents. I wasn't yet a year old. I don't have a birth certificate. I suspect he didn't, either. I'm on no one's family registry. Again, I assume the same was true of him. But my parents secured citizenship for me in my adoptive land. Phillip's parents did not.

In 2012, Phillip was deported from the United States to our birth country. He had no connections, no cultural context, no language. Perhaps parts of his upbringing had been similar to mine, both of us in the tail end of an assimilation-centred era of transnational adoption. I wonder if he tried to distance himself from anything Korean when he was small, hoping, as I did, that his difference from the other people would dissolve if he didn't draw attention to it. Maybe he, too, in adulthood, felt the simultaneous longing for Korea and absolute terror of being in a place that means so much but feels so unfamiliar. Of course, whenever I'm in South Korea, that fear is softened by the knowledge that I can always return to the place I know. To the place I was raised.

But that comfort, too, is discomforting.

There is a community of returned adoptees living in Seoul, but their situations there, like mine, are/were different from those of Phillip Clay. He could not leave that place but he also could not stay. He could not leave because he had nowhere to go. He could not stay because he had nowhere to be. And so, in 2017, Phillip Clay rode an elevator to the 14th floor of a building in a small but impressive city called Ilsan, just southwest of Seoul, and flew out into the night. To the hard world below.

Korean adoptees around the world grieved his suicide, but also his troubled life - the disproportionate injustice he faced and the pain with which he lived. Anger also streamed forth as adoptees tried to make sense of a transnational adoption system that results in further adoptee dislocation. Adoptee statelessness. It is the same system that Adoptee Rights Campaign members try to hold accountable as they fight for what they estimate to be the 35,000 adoptees from around the world whose American adoptive parents failed to secure U.S. citizenship for them.

The same system that Adam Crapser, another Korean adoptee who was deported from the U.S.

two years ago, describes in his 2019 lawsuit against the South Korean government and his adoption agency in Seoul. The same system that reaches into other places, too: Adoptees from Vietnam, Thailand and Brazil have also faced deportation for similar reasons - only learning in adulthood that they, once 18, are undocumented. That they do not belong in their adoptive land.

That, in fact, they belong nowhere.

Transnational adoption from South Korea began in 1953, the same year the Korean Armistice Agreement was signed. It began in large part because of the growing number of both war orphans and the children of American soldiers, who were ostracized by a society that valued patrilineage and ethnic "purity," among other things. Since that time, an estimated 250,000 young people have been sent from South Korea to foreign lands on one-way "orphan" visas, raised in places such as Canada, the United States, Western Europe, Scandinavian countries and Australia.

South Koreans expressed shame over their transnational adoption program when the world turned its attention to the country during the 1988 Seoul Olympics, but the industry persisted. The program continued despite rapid economic growth in South Korea and continues today, even though the country is experiencing a population crisis due to falling birthrates.

Unsurprisingly, the U.S. became the main destination for Korean adoptees in the years following the Korean War and still is today. The peak of Korean international adoption was in the 1980s, and the practice has been in decline for the past few years.

Although some steps have been taken to protect transnational adoptees from deportation, more must be done. Importantly, though, this work must not simply seek to secure exemptions for adoptees without proper documentation; it should focus on reforming xenophobic and cruel immigration policies more broadly.

The Adoptee Citizenship Act of 2000 granted U.S. citizenship to adopted people who were born in another country after 1983 (in other words, who were under 18 when the act came into effect in 2001) but excluded the thousands of adult transnational adoptees who had immigrated without their consent and had been raised as American children. And while deportation is the greatest threat, stateless transnational adoptees can face obstacles when applying for passports to leave their adoptive lands, registering for social and/ or student assistance or obtaining a driver's licence.

Most recently, senators from Missouri, Maine, Hawaii and Minnesota - the state with one of the highest rates of transnational adoptions - introduced an updated Adoptee Citizenship Act (2019). The bipartisan bill would remedy the issue by granting retroactive citizenship to all transnational adopted children of American parents.

In Canada, citizenship for transnational adoptees falls under the purview of the Citizenship Act. An adoptee or an adoptive parent can apply for a grant of citizenship, with the caveat that the first-generation limit to citizenship excludes adoptees whose adoptive parents were themselves born outside Canada.

The first-generation limit also precludes transnational adoptees from passing on their citizenship to any children born outside Canada, biological or adoptive. In other words, transnational adoptees can be granted direct citizenship only if their parents were born in Canada, but their own children will not inherit citizenship if they are born in another country. To circumvent these restrictions, some Canadian parents opt instead to apply for permanent residency for their transnationally adopted children, with the understanding that, if the adopted person later applies for citizenship, they may be exempt from the first-generation limit.

The recent crisis of transnational adoption and citizenship is even more insidious than all this. In a cruel revision of the pattern of children being sent out of their birth countries and cultures, we are witnessing more and more parents being deported, deemed "illegitimate" or "illegal" (i.e. undocumented) immigrants, with young people winding up in the care of the country that managed to transform them into adoptable orphans. Agencies such as Bethany Christian Services, despite protesting the separation of children and their parents at the U.S.-Mexico border, have already begun placing these children in new homes and families. We know, to borrow from my colleague and fellow Korean adoptee, Dr. Kimberly McKee, that the U.S. and many of its private adoption agencies are working together to "create potential adoptees" through the detention and deportation of their parents.

Regardless of one's opinion on these tactics, one thing is certain: We can no longer naively accept the comfortable narrative that the parents of adopted children always have agency or choice or that they would want their children to be raised by others in another country. We must admit the continuing, primal pain of separation and the terrifying power the state holds over how present and future kinship might be experienced.

This opens a host of questions about reunion, citizenship and possibility. When I reunited with my Korean family, I had a Canadian passport, the right to travel to my birth country and, when my time there was over, the right to leave. I can return to visit my Korean relatives and, should I so choose, stay for months at a time. My Korean sister lives in Canada now. My Korean parents visited to attend my wedding in 2010.

Will young people today, adopted in the U.S. and with transnational parents, be eligible to obtain U.S. passports? What, if it is even possible, would their reunions and returns (temporary or otherwise) look like? Will they one day also be deported if not protected by the Adoption Citizenship Act? Can they travel to their countries of origin and/or the countries of their ancestors?

If they do, can they ever again leave? Presumably, their parents will be disqualified from returning to see them in the United States. In other words, has transnational adoption finally devolved to a point where reunion, what already goes against the odds, what already seems (and usually is) impossible, really is?

While it is not the case with all, there are some adoptive families who opt to participate in transnational adoption because of the perception that the break with first families is final, that there is no possibility of reunion. Some of us have been fortunate enough to prove otherwise. That we always find a way home.

Associated Graphic

Orphans wait in San Francisco in December, 1956, to be sorted into their various foster homes after being brought to the United States from Korea.


Turkey launches air strikes on Kurdish forces after U.S. pullout
Trump calls offensive 'a bad idea' as panicked residents of northern Syria flee
Thursday, October 10, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A1

AKCAKALE, TURKEY -- Turkey launched air strikes, fired artillery and began a ground offensive against Kurdish fighters in northern Syria on Wednesday after U.S. troops pulled back from the area, paving the way for an assault on forces that have long been allied with the United States.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced the start of the campaign, which followed the abrupt decision Sunday by U.S. President Donald Trump to essentially abandon the Syrian Kurdish fighters, leaving them vulnerable to a Turkish offensive that was widely condemned around the world.

The decision was a major shift in U.S. policy and drew opposition from all sides at home. It also marked a stark change in rhetoric by Mr. Trump, who during a news conference in New York last year vowed to stand by the Kurds, who have been the United States' only allies in Syria fighting the Islamic State group. Mr. Trump said at the time that the Kurds "fought with us" and "died with us," and insisted that the United States would never forget.

After Mr. Erdogan announced the offensive, Mr. Trump called the operation "a bad idea." Later Wednesday, he said he didn't want to be involved in "endless, senseless wars."

In northern Syria, residents of the borders areas were in a panic and got out on foot, in cars and with rickshaws piled with mattresses and a few belongings. It was a wrenchingly familiar scenario for the many who, only a few years ago, had fled the advances on their towns and villages by the Islamic State.

Plumes of smoke could be seen rising near the town of Qamishli and clashes continued late Wednesday amid intense shelling as Turkey struck at least six different border towns along a 300kilometre stretch. At least seven civilians and three members of the Kurdish-led force known as the Syrian Democratic Forces were killed in the Turkish bombardment, Kurdish activists and a Syria war monitor said.

Turkey's campaign - in which a North Atlantic Treaty Organization member is raining down bombs on an area where hundreds of U.S. troops are stationed - drew immediate criticism and calls for restraint from Canada and Europe.

In his statement, Mr. Trump emphasized that there are no American soldiers in the area under attack.

"Canada firmly condemns Turkey's military incursion into Syria today," Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland said on Twitter.

"This unilateral action risks undermining the stability of an already-fragile region, exacerbating the humanitarian situation and rolling back progress achieved by the Global Coalition Against Daesh, of which Turkey is a member," she wrote, using an alternative name for the Islamic State.

"We call for the protection of civilians and on all parties to respect their obligations under international law, including unhindered access for humanitarian aid."

Canadian Armed Forces troops used to train Kurdish security forces in neighbouring Iraq, but have since shifted focus to leading the NATO training mission for Iraqi state security forces, a commitment that extends to 2021.

Turkey's Mr. Erdogan said on Twitter: "Our mission is to prevent the creation of a terror corridor across our southern border, and to bring peace to the area."

He said that Turkish forces, with Ankara-backed Syrian fighters known as the Syrian National Army, had begun to eradicate what he called "the threat of terror" against Turkey.

Mustafa Bali, a spokesman for the U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces, said Turkish warplanes were targeting "civilian areas" in northern Syria and that shells also had fallen near a prison guarded by Kurds and holding some of the most dangerous IS militants.

The AP could not verify the report independently.

In Washington, officials said two British militants believed to be part of an Islamic State group that beheaded hostages and was known as "the Beatles" had been moved out of a detention centre in Syria and were in U.S. custody.

Before Turkey's attack, Syrian Kurdish forces who control nearly 30 per cent of Syria's territories warned of a "humanitarian catastrophe."

More than two million people live in the area affected by the attacks, according to aid groups.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said those killed in the Turkish bombardments included two Christian Assyrians in Qamishli, a married couple and their child, a man in a village outside the town of Tal Abyad and a child in a village west of Qamishli.

The Turkish operation, meant to create a "safe zone," carries potential gains and risk for Turkey by getting even more deeply involved in the Syria war. It also would ignite new fighting in Syria's eight-year-old war, potentially displacing hundreds of thousands.

A resident of Tal Abyad said one of the bombs hit an SDF post, and he fled with his wife and mother by car to Raqqa, nearly 100 kilometres to the south, to flee the bombing. The resident, who gave his name as Maher, said the road to Raqqa was packed with vehicles and families, some fleeing on foot "to get away from the bombing."

"People fled and left everything behind," he said in a text message after he reached safety.

Turkey has long threatened to attack the Kurdish fighters that Ankara considers terrorists allied with a Kurdish insurgency in Turkey. Expectations of an invasion increased after Mr. Trump's announcement Sunday, although he also threatened to "totally destroy and obliterate" Turkey's economy if the Turkish push went too far.

U.S. critics said he was sacrificing an ally, the Syrian Kurdish forces, and undermining Washington's credibility. Republican Senator Lindsey Graham, a Trump ally, told Fox & Friends that if Mr. Trump "follows through with this, it would be the biggest mistake of his presidency."

Mr. Trump later said the U.S.

"does not endorse this attack and has made it clear to Turkey that this operation is a bad idea." Mr. Trump said he made clear from the start of his political career that "I did not want to fight these endless, senseless wars - especially those that don't benefit the United States. Turkey has committed to protecting civilians, protecting religious minorities, including Christians, and ensuring no humanitarian crisis takes place - and we will hold them to this commitment."

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg, while saying that Turkey "has legitimate security concerns" after suffering "horrendous terrorist attacks" and playing host to thousands of refugees, said the country should not "further destabilize the region" with its military action in Syria.

German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas condemned the offensive, saying it will "further destabilize the region and strengthen IS." The operation also was criticized by European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker.

The EU is paying Turkey 6-billion ($8.8-billion) to help the country cope with almost four million Syrian refugees on its territory in exchange for stopping migrants leaving for Europe.

Turkey urged the international community to rally behind Ankara, which he said would take over the fight against the Islamic State group.

Turkey aimed to "neutralize" Syrian Kurdish militants in northeastern Syria and to "liberate the local population from the yoke of the armed thugs," Fahrettin Altun, the Turkish presidency's communications director, wrote in a Washington Post column published Wednesday.

Mr. Erdogan discussed the incursion by phone with Russian President Vladimir Putin. Mr. Erdogan's office said he told Mr. Putin the military action "will contribute to the peace and stability" and allow for a political process in Syria.

In its call for a general mobilization, the local civilian Kurdish authority known as the Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria asked the global community to live up to its and asked the U.S.-led coalition to set up a no-fly zone in northeastern Syria to protect the civilian population from Turkish airstrikes.

The U.S.-backed Syrian Kurdish group urged Moscow to broker talks with the Syrian government in Damascus in light of the Turkish operation. The Syrian Kurdish-led administration said it is responding positively to calls from Moscow encouraging the Kurds and the Syrian government to settle their difference through talks.

Syria's Foreign Ministry condemned Turkey's plans, calling it a "blatant violation" of international law and vowing to repel an incursion.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov accused Washington of playing "very dangerous games" with the Syrian Kurds, saying the U.S. first propped up the Syrian Kurdish "quasi state" in Syria and now is withdrawing support.

"Such reckless attitude to this highly sensitive subject can set fire to the entire region, and we have to avoid it at any cost," he said in Kazakhstan.

Earlier Wednesday, three IS militants targeted the Kurdishled Syrian Democratic Forces in Raqqa, once the de facto IS capital at the height of the militants' power. An activist collective in Raqqa reported an exchange of fire and an explosion; the Observatory said two IS fighters engaged in a shootout before blowing themselves up.

IS claimed responsibility, saying one of its members killed or wounded 13 SDF members.

The SDF, which holds thousands of IS fighters in detention facilities in northeastern Syria, has warned that a Turkish incursion might lead to the resurgence of the extremists. The U.S.-allied Kurdish-led force captured the last IS area controlled by the militants in eastern Syria in March.

Associated Graphic

Civilians flee with their belongings during Turkish bombardment on Syria's northeastern town of Ras al-Ain on Wednesday.


Fine art, legacy and unfinished business
Kathleen Bartels left the Vancouver Art Gallery with a key goal unfulfilled - building its forever home - but she's certain it was time to 'pass the baton'
Saturday, October 12, 2019 – Print Edition, Page R6

The house was sold, the movers had come and gone, and Kathleen Bartels was two days away from leaving Vancouver for Southern California. After running the Vancouver Art Gallery for 18 years, Bartels had exited the gallery in the spring and was now leaving the city - and doing so without seeing to fruition the passion project that drove her for nearly her entire time there: the move to a new, purpose-built gallery.

"It's hard to leave. I love the institution. I've given it my all. And I hope the next person that comes on is just as passionate and caring and tenacious as I was. And can take it to the next phase," she said.

When news of her immediate departure was announced in May, it came as a surprise to the public.

But her exit, as her contract was coming up for renewal, was not a surprise to her, she says, or her board. "It was a joint decision. It's something that has been discussed for a while," Bartels said during the interview early this month.

"It was time. Eighteen years. I was the longest serving director in the gallery's history. Eighteen years at any institution or organization is a long time," she said.

"And it's time to move on, pass the baton to someone else, and think of other possibilities for myself and my family."

It was a good time to leave, she says: 2019 started with the announcement of the unprecedented $40-million gift from the Chan family, Vancouver-based philanthropists, for the new gallery. A strategic plan for the next five years had been completed.

She says her final fiscal year at the gallery brought in "great" revenue and attendance. Memberships and admissions have increased significantly under her watch, as has the collection. "It's always important to leave when you feel good about where we are," she said. "So the table was set."

But where will the table reside?

There has been a lot of talk about what Bartels's departure means for the project that has long dominated her - and the city's cultural - agenda.

Early in Bartels's tenure, it was determined that the current gallery, in a renovated former courthouse, was insufficient and that it would be preferable to move than to expand on-site. At one point, the plan was to move to False Creek, but the gallery ultimately landed on another spot, known as Larwill Park (currently a parking lot where temporary social housing has been erected).

The city has given the VAG a longterm lease on part of that land, but that deal - which is conditional on funding - has had to be extended again and again.

In 2015, the gallery revealed a concept design by Swiss architecture firm Herzog and de Meuron, a design which has since been modified. But the VAG has not been able to launch a formal capital campaign, having secured $135-million of the estimated $380-million cost: $330-million for construction (which seems low, according to some observers with knowledge of the construction industry) plus a $50-million endowment.

That $135-million includes the $50-million then-B.C. premier Gordon Campbell granted the project in 2008. Since then, there has been no government money earmarked: not the $100-million the gallery was hoping to receive from Ottawa, nor the additional $50-million from the province.

More than $20-million has been spent on the project without a single shovel in the ground. In the meantime, new art galleries have opened in North Vancouver (the Polygon), Whistler (the Audain Art Museum), Edmonton (the Art Gallery of Alberta) and Saskatoon (Remai Modern).

Vancouver's cultural chattering classes wondered if Bartels's departure was an indication of defeat on the building project - either from her or her board. But she says she believes the new gallery is going to be built.

"I think so," Bartels told me. "I would be unbelievably disappointed and surprised if it didn't. I think it would be a very sad state of affairs, particularly with all the private-sector money that's come for]. And more will come. But the government needs to do something."

She said the board has done a lot of advocacy work that she hopes pays off with a new gallery.

"Whether it's exactly the vision that we have, I'm not sure. But I think some change will happen.

And I'm just saying that, based on my personal feelings. But it's going to require the government to come forward."

After her departure, Bartels was retained as a special adviser to the VAG and says she has had some conversations with interim director Daina Augaitis (Bartels's former deputy director and chief curator, who had previously retired and returned when Bartels left), other staff and trustees.

"When advice is needed, I'm there to help."

The protracted gallery project aside, Bartels has a long list of highlights from her tenure. There were seminal shows, including Bruce Mau's Massive Change and Guo Pei: Couture Beyond. She oversaw a number of groundbreaking Indigenous art exhibitions, including Raven Travelling: Two Centuries of Haida Art; Beat Nation: Art, Hip Hop and Aboriginal Culture; and Susan Point: Spindle Whorl.

She is particularly proud of the importance she placed on local artists, with exhibitions by Ian Wallace, Geoffrey Farmer, Roy Arden and others. She also put an emphasis on acquiring work by local artists such as Jeff Wall.

"Kathleen's arrival at the VAG ended a long drab period when the gallery was very poorly directed. She brought the place back to life and began a reinvention process that kept expanding," Wall wrote by e-mail. "The gallery once again became a place where people interested in art actually wanted to go."

She collaborated with Wall to co-curate a series of exhibitions by international artists who had never shown in Canada before, including U.S. artist Kerry James Marshall.

"I feel this very strong bond with the art community here. And that's been the solace that I've found during the challenging times," Bartels said. "Because the artists were always there. I could go to a studio visit or meet with them, and always feel rejuvenated and buoyed."

A number of artists, including Wall, were among the 100 or so people who attended her goodbye party at the West Vancouver home owned by the proprietors of Tantalus Vineyards. Honorary board chair Michael Audain was there, too, as were some other current trustees.

When Audain - a developer, collector, generous philanthropist and former chair of the VAG's relocation committee - announced in 2012 that he would be building his own gallery in Whistler, it was seen as a blow to the VAG's ambitions for a new facility.

There were other challenges.

After a joyous announcement in 2015 that the gallery had acquired and would display ten sketches by Group of Seven co-founder J.E.H.

MacDonald, which had been buried for decades on his old property in Ontario, some outside experts raised concerns. The VAG enlisted the Canadian Conservation Institute in Ottawa for testing. The gallery has repeatedly refused to reveal those results and has still not displayed the paintings. Over coffee and cookies, I asked Bartels if she could finally tell me what those tests found.

She said she could not; she was no longer in a position to say.

As well, earlier this year, the gallery's 200 unionized employees went on a weeklong strike, making Bartels a target for some workers and donors. (She says she was taken aback by the staff's decision to strike.) Then, the deputy director/chief curator she hired last year to replace Augaitis, Rochelle Steiner, left shortly after Bartels did. (Steiner is now chief curator at the Palm Springs Art Museum.)

Most of all, though, there has been a lot of grumbling about the new building - the need for it, the cost, the design. At times, the opposition to the project was vocal and forceful and, to quote Wall, "astonishingly hostile."

And for others in favour of the new building, the lack of progress in getting it off - or into - the ground has been frustrating.

But Bartels said with conviction that the project is ready to move forward. "I hope that will be a big part of my legacy here. Even if I'm not here at the groundbreaking, I can't imagine that I wouldn't be considered as part of making that project happen."

Wall, an internationally renowned artist, certainly thinks so.

"Her initiative to create an entirely new building was an unprecedented act of visionary generosity and confidence in the culture of this city," he wrote in his e-mail.

He says he knows many leading museum directors around the world and can't think of one who could have done more to encourage support from the city, province or federal government. "Her affection for this place and its culture is already a fine legacy."

Associated Graphic

Kathleen Bartels says she's proud of the local artists she promoted as director of the Vancouver Art Gallery. 'I feel this very strong bond with the art community here,' she says. 'And that's been the solace that I've found during the challenging times.'


Port Hope terrace house evokes a Victorian charm
Home was built around 1875 with intricate details, giving a sense of strong craftsmanship
Friday, October 18, 2019 – Print Edition, Page H8

PORT HOPE, ONT. -- 15 Bramley St. N.


Asking Price: $424,900 Taxes: $2,554 (2019) Lot Size: 19 feet by 92 feet Agent: Scott Ingram, Century 21 Regal Realty Inc.

THE BACKSTORY When Sally McCubbin first purchased the sturdy little terrace house at 15 Bramley St. N. in Port Hope, Ont., back in 2013, it was part of a plan to start a new glassblowing venture in town and escape the hustle and bustle of Toronto. As fate would have it, that passion project did not materialize, but out of her Port Hope adventure, she would gain a husband, a child and a move back to Toronto. After renting the house out for a few years, the couple think it's time to close this chapter and say goodbye to smalltown living.

"It was just really affordable at the time," Ms. McCubbin said. "I was attracted to it because it has a really urban feel; ticks off a lot of boxes. When I first moved there, there was a lot of people who had retired to Port Hope and a lot of local business owners. More recently, we're seeing people who work remotely, or [are] moving businesses out there, or there are people that commute into the city. The landscape of Port Hope is quite hip. There's a bunch of coffee shops, good restaurants, good bars and a historical backdrop."

There's a great deal of conversation in federal politics about housing "affordability" - whether it be through relaxing mortgage stress tests or expanding firsttime home buyer tax credits - and in the Greater Toronto Area, the context is often described as "drive until you can qualify."

Simply put, Port Hope is an hour from Toronto, but it's a different country in terms of price: Houses here are essentially half the price of the average Toronto home (and Toronto's median prices are held down by lowerprice high-rise condos).

In 2013, the median sales price for a Port Hope house was about $225,000. By the second quarter of 2019, Port Hope's median sales price was $438,500. That's a slight dip from the spiking prices of 2017, but the trend remains an upward one. Admittedly, volumes are very low: About 18 houses sell every month in the town, which reported

16,753 residents in 2016's census.

"To buy the same house in Toronto, it would still be three times the price in Parkdale," Ms.

McCubbin said. The couple considered keeping the house as an investment, or even a "country" getaway, but in the end, decided selling makes more sense. "We're just not cut out to be landlords; it does the house disservice to have someone in there that doesn't care about it," Ms. McCubbin said.

THE HOUSE TODAY The little terrace house has about 1,264 square feet of living space, but it's packed with charm. From the street, you gain a sense of the strong craftsmanship found within: Red brick is the main colour, but yellow bricks were added to highlight such features as intricate block cornices along the roofline (three corbelled bricks stacked to form what is called a modillion), alternating-colour soldier courses (vertically stacked bricks) above the windows and string-courses (a band of coloured brick) that form corbels above the window frames.

It's the only house in the row of six that has a covered front porch (not original, but a tasteful addition).

A little historical digging by listing agent Scott Ingram suggests the building was constructed around 1875, part of local grocer Thomas Menhennit's attempts at land speculation that ended poorly: death from "dropsy" and insolvency. Down the street on the corner of Ridout Street and Bramley Street North is Basil's Market & Deli, located in Menhennit's original store.

The front vestibule is a modest little square. Through the inner door, you come into the mainfloor's central hallway, with wideplank floors and a staircase that climbs up the wall on the right and takes an elegant curve to the left at the top of the run. These spaces can be purely functional in some houses, but in this house, with two well-lit rooms opening off the left, they are inviting.

At the end of this hallway is the main-floor powder room, which also has the washer and dryer and wood-panelled walls. There is also a doorway to the basement, which is unfinished, but it is dry and - unlike a lot of basements of this vintage in Port Hope - it is concrete, not simply bare dirt, as with many old country homes.

The front sitting room and the formal dining room are connected by an archway with pillars. The broad plank pine floor (refinished by Ms. McCubbin) is complemented by modern furnishings, clean white walls and simple lines. The tall windows let light in on both exterior walls - all the windows in the house were replaced by the couple. Visitors should take notice of the rosecoloured glass piece labelled "fish" on the coffee table; that's from a series of glassworks Ms.

McCubbin did on Canada's greatest resource exports.

The space feels more farmhouse than townhouse.

"There's a ton of cool details in this house; the old staircase is beautiful, details up the stairs and spindles, old baseboards and old doors," said Clayton Hanmer, Ms.

McCubbin's husband who is also known as the cartoonist and illustrator CTON. "And the special façade on the buildings ... no wonder the guy went broke."

The kitchen is one of the areas the sellers did the most work on: exposing the brick, making a jumbled area into a more natural galley-style space. The counters are butcher's block and there are no upper cabinets, so the kitchen feels bigger than its 11-foot-by-9foot layout, not that you would call this an eat-in space. To make up for the cabinet space, one just has to turn to the left and there's a mudroom with a wall full of pantry storage, more brick (painted now) and a glass-pane door to the rear yard.

In the yard, straight back from that rear door, is the small detached studio space. Designed and built by Mr. Hanmer (although contractors were called in for the structural stuff,) it has the same pale pine wood panelling on the floors, ceiling, window and door trim, plus a loft space for storage. There is baseboard heating and windows on all four sides.

Back to the front of the house and up the stairs is the second level - and no space is wasted here. It's basically a landing with four doors right next to each other, two on each side.

First door on the right: The crib suggests it's a baby's room, 8 feet by 8 feet, (tall window, those plank floors, no closet), but this was also used as a study by the sellers in the past.

Second door on the right: full bath (8 feet by 8 feet) with clawfoot tub and shower, single sink, toilet, linen storage space next to the door. The floor here could use an update, for sure.

First door on the left: fecond bedroom, 7 feet by 9 feet, tall window; at some point someone built out a closet enclosure and we're back to the plank floors.

Second door on the left: master bedroom, not a vast space at 9 feet by 11 feet, but does have two windows looking out on the street and a reasonable-sized closet (for the era, it's large).


Agent and sellers emphasize that the house is minutes to the 401 and there are also a couple of GO train options within a short drive.

Add to that the community's proximity to the big city and the burgeoning culinary and hospitality scene of Prince Edward County (and it's own maturing local charms) and there's a case for living in Port Hope even if you don't work there.

The couple used to spend most of their time in the backyard, shaded by 150-year-old maples, or walking around the community and seeing the dozens of historically significant homes. Several street scenes from the recent movie adaptations of Stephen King's It were filmed in the town, which may give you a sense of some of the environs given its evocation of frozen-in-time Derry, Me.

In this case, the agent thinks the buyers will look a lot like the sellers. "I think it's someone from Toronto that doesn't want to be in a bland subdivision," Mr. Ingram said. "It's a cool house and you can walk down the main street in be in the town centre." Indeed, one of the other houses in the row is currently being renovated by a new arrival looking for just that sort of thing.

Associated Graphic

The broad plank pine floors throughout most of the house at 15 Bramley St. N. are complemented by modern furnishings and simple lines.


The rear yard has a small detached studio space designed by one of the house's current owners, Clayton Hanmer.

Canlit gets ready for its closeup at the world's biggest book fair
All the world will be looking at Canadian books in 2020, when our country will be the guest of honour at the biggest publishing event of the year
Special to The Globe and Mail
Saturday, October 12, 2019 – Print Edition, Page R12

Attendees tend to use the adjective "overwhelming."

Montreal publisher Linda Leith describes it as "a city of books, almost inconceivable even to those of us who have attended other major international book fairs."

The Frankfurt Book Fair (which also goes by its German initials, FBM) is the world's largest trade fair for books, "the biggest and probably most important industry event of the year in the publishing world," says Bookhug Press co-publisher Hazel Millar.

Although it may not feature prominently in the minds of the Canadian reading public, it's the buying and selling of literary rights at Frankfurt that puts international books on Canadian shelves and introduces Canadian authors to readers in Seoul and Berlin.

As Canadian publishers, literary agents, publishing associations and printers head to Frankfurt next week, I looked at how smaller presses approach the fair and are preparing for Canada FBM2020, when Canada will be the guest of honour and, as Millar puts it, "all the world will be looking at our books."

The first decision for many small presses will be whether to participate at all. "It's a huge investment to go to Frankfurt," says Millar - not just the travel expense or the cost of having a stand at FBM, but the decision to expand the business.

Bookhug, which turns 15 this year, has developed its catalogue since its early days as a poetry-only press. "We felt it wouldn't be time to go until we had a substantive enough list of fiction and non-fiction offerings to entice other publishers," Millar says.

This will be her third year darting around the fair from meeting to meeting. She figures Canada's spotlight year will be the one to finally invest in a stand - Bookhug already has one reserved for 2020.

Millar is also chair of the Literary Press Group, an association of 60 Canadian publishers. Many LPG member publishers attend Frankfurt; many don't. For the latter group, LPG compiled a rights catalogue of 40 titles that will be represented by rights agent Catherine Mitchell. The catalogue includes Accordéon, a finalist for the 2017 Amazon First Novel Award, published by Arbeiter Ring of Winnipeg; Dimitri Nasrallah's allegorical novel of the Arab Spring, The Bleeds, which has already sold world French rights; and Martina Scholtens's memoirs, Your Heart Is the Size of Your Fist, about her decade working at an urban medical clinic for refugees, published by Victoria's Brindle & Glass.

Bookhug's most successful rights seller is Erin Wunker's Notes from a Feminist Killjoy, which has sold into some unexpected territories. "We're very proud of the fact that it sold into Turkey and Korea," Millar says, adding how the collection of essays about intersectional feminism filled a gap in the acquiring publishers' lists.

Much of the work in selling rights is about finding and filling such gaps, but there's also an element of serendipity. "One of the fun things about Frankfurt is its unpredictability," says Brian Lam, publisher of Vancouver's Arsenal Pulp Press. "We sold an alternative crafting book called Yarn Bombing to a large German publisher after the rights director saw it on our stands as she was walking by.

"In 2013, we were approached by an agent in Europe who had seen our books at Frankfurt and told us, 'I have a book that's in your DNA.' " The book was a lesbian-themed graphic novel from France, which Lam acquired before the film adaptation won the Palme d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival. Arsenal Pulp's English edition of Blue Is the Warmest Color has now sold almost 100,000 copies and "really put our graphic novels on the map," says Lam.

"That wouldn't have happened if the agent hadn't taken notice of our LGBTQ titles at Frankfurt."

It's up to Canada what to make of 2020. The Frankfurt Book Fair has highlighted a guest of honour since 1976. Gillian Fizet, who heads Canada FBM 2020, has met with many recent honoured countries. "One of the first things we quickly realized is that there really is no template for being guest of honour," she says. Some countries, such as France (2017), already have a long-standing relationship with the German publishing industry. Whereas New Zealand, which focused at the 2012 fair on penetrating the German market, "and went on to hit an 800-per-cent augmentation in rights sales after its guest of honour year."

Canada's approach to FBM2020 is closer to the New Zealand model. In addition to its regular literary translation fund, the Canada Council introduced a new fund specifically for translating Canadian works into German ahead of FBM2020. In July, 2018, a trade mission of 25 Canadian independent publishers visited Germany to learn about the market and introduce the Canadian market to German publishers, who have since been here as well.

According to Fizet, Canada is very close to reaching its goal of selling the rights to 200 Canadianauthored or illustrated works into the German-language market for next year's fair. Germany's most popular genre is fiction. More English-language works have been sold than French, which Fizet ascribes to the size of these markets.

"I think there's generally a lot more openness among German publishers than many of their European counterparts," Lam says.

Arsenal Pulp has sold more books in Germany than in any other country.

As one of the few Canadian trade publishers working in both of Canada's official languages, translation is at the heart of Linda Leith Publishing/Éditions. The Frankfurt sale Leith is most proud of is Wiebke von Carolsfeld's debut novel, Claremont, with German and world rights sold to Cologne's Kiepenheuer & Witsch (KiWi). Among the factors that attracted the major German publisher to this book set on Toronto's Claremont Avenue was its author. Born and raised in Germany, von Carolsfeld worked at KiWi and comes to fiction writing from a celebrated career in filmmaking.

Canada FBM2020 is undeniably a commercial enterprise. It is also a cultural representation of Canada, with all of the country's contradictions, including the present state of Indigenous relations.

When asked about representing Indigenous writers in a global marketplace, both Millar and Lam note the stereotypes that still sometimes play out in conversations with international publishers. "I believe we have a very big responsibility in front of us to properly present Indigenous writing and break down any misunderstandings," Millar says. She believes Lee Maracle, who publishes with Bookhug and other small presses, should be invited to Frankfurt next year.

Fizet says that the Canada FBM2020 mandate includes Indigenous literary expression alongside English and Francophone works, and all three communities are represented on Canada FBM2020's board of directors, as well as the committee deciding the program of Canadian authors visiting Germany in 2020. "We expect it will include a variety of works from Indigenous authors and illustrators from across the country," Fizet says.

While Lam used to notice a lack of interest among foreign publishers in books that examined the contemporary realities of Indigenous experience, he says that is changing. "When we first published Jonny Appleseed by Joshua Whitehead, about an 'Indigenous' young male phone-sex worker finding his place in the world, the initial response from foreign publishers was lukewarm. Now that it's won many awards, we're finally seeing rights sales."

Frankfurt retains its relevance in the internet age because there's no replacing the face-to-face meeting. Every publishing professional will tell you that Frankfurt is ultimately about cultivating relationships. Since Blue Is the Warmest Color, Arsenal Pulp has published several titles from Editions Glenat and has great relationships with queer publishers such as Albino Editions of Berlin, says Lam. Albino published the German edition of Raziel Reid's When Everything Feels like the Movies and just bought the German rights to Jonny Appleseed. Millar has found several corresponding publishers to Bookhug in Britain, including Galley Beggar, Influx and Dead Ink. Norway's Forlaget Oktober and France's Nobilia also have similar publishing visions. Leith, meanwhile, looks to Shanghai publisher Archipel Press and, back home in Montreal, Leméac Éditions.

Millar admits that international rights are still a minimal part of Bookhug's overall business, but the long-term payout of establishing relationships with publishing professionals from all over the world means the real return on Canada FBM2020 probably won't be known for years. "Even if the opportunities might not be there to work together now, I have a lot of confidence that the day will come. I know their tastes now, they know me now, and we're going to find a project eventually to work on together."

Associated Graphic

Every year, one country is named the guest of honour at the Frankfurt Book Fair, the publishing industry's biggest event of the year. The guest of honour in 2018 was Georgia, seen above, and Canada will hold the title in 2020.


Frankfurt remains relevant, even in the internet age, because the event is as much about cultivating relationships as it is about showcasing books.


The end of the road for 1950s shopping malls
Developers dig deep to transform retail-only enclaves into mixed-use communities
Special to The Globe and Mail
Tuesday, October 8, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B6

For Danielle Lenarcic Biss, who grew up near Cloverdale Mall in Etobicoke, the enclosed maze of shops surrounded by acres of asphalt was a great place to stop for brief errands, but it wasn't a destination - a place to spend time.

However, Ms. Biss, who is a master of planning candidate at Ryerson University, is learning that long-time residents of the area remember Cloverdale quite differently.

As the lead engagement ambassador for Vancouver-based QuadReal Property Group, she works directly with community members, gathering input to help the developer decide how best to recreate the space as a place for people to live, as well as to shop and visit for fun.

In 1956, when Cloverdale opened near the intersection of the Queen Elizabeth Way and the newly built Highway 427, suburbia was transforming the face of retail. Nearby residents were given a reason not to drive downtown as the mall's growing collection of food, fashion and service outlets were conveniently accessible and also visually appealing, designed to resemble an old-fashioned, open-air town square.

Every mall had its anchor store, and for Cloverdale, this honour went to a branch of Montrealbased department store Morgan's, which eventually became part of Hudson's Bay Co.

Throughout the 1950s and 60s, ever-larger crowds flocked to witness staged fashion shows and festivals presented by the retailers. Once the seventies rolled around, all that faded into memory, as Cloverdale became an "indoor" mall enclosed by walls and ceilings. The anchor store eventually became Zellers, then a shortlived Target store. However, for the past few years, the space that once held an anchor tenant has been nothing more than a vast vacant box, ripe for redevelopment.

TIME FOR CHANGE As retail trends change and land values rise, the future of aging malls across Canada rests on a greater mix of uses, Andrew Petrozzi, principal and practice leader of research for B.C. for Avison Young (Canada) Inc., explains in his new study, Future Forward: the Rise of Urban Enclaves in Metro Vancouver.

According to his research, there are at least 10 such retail-only malls from the 1950s and 60s scattered throughout the Vancouver region, including Burnaby, Richmond and Surrey, for which residential components are being planned. In addition to soaring land values around Vancouver, a regional growth strategy designed to encourage mixed-use development along transit corridors is seen as driving the impetus for change.

Vancouver's Oakridge Centre, built in 1959 and occupying 29 acres of land (the majority of which consists of parking lots), is a prime example of this shift. In addition to one million square feet of retail, QuadReal's redevelopment plan for the mall includes 400,000 square feet of office space and 5,300 residential units, plus a nine-acre park and a civic centre.

While the Avison Young study concentrated on Vancouver, Mr.Petrozzi says that suburban malls, along with their acres of asphalt, are being similarly reimagined in a number of other Canadian cities, particularly in the fastgrowing Toronto region, as well as in the United States.

At Toronto's Bayview Village Shopping Centre, for instance, planning is under way for two new residential towers. Similarly, redevelopment plans for Dufferin Mall on Toronto's west side and Agincourt Mall in Scarborough also call for condo towers.

"The mall in its existing form just doesn't lend itself to retail trends for the future," says Ben Gilbank, director of development for QuadReal, the firm that purchased Cloverdale in 2004. In order for stores to remain open during the transition, the 33-acre site will be completely rebuilt in stages over several years.

"The area is ripe for change; in a way, we are trying to bring downtown to the inner suburbs.

People want to live in downtown Toronto for its arts and culture and restaurants, but it's become so expensive and traffic is daunting. We see a lot of opportunity to create those urban amenities in a suburban development," Mr. Gilbank says.

Many of the changes being contemplated for Cloverdale are similar to what QuadReal is already doing at Oakridge in Vancouver.

"Both involve creating more sustainable retail offerings, while enhancing the sites to include residential uses and vibrant, public spaces and community amenities," he says.

COMMUNITY FEEDBACK IS INTEGRAL The redevelopment plan for Cloverdale will not be finalized until consultations with the community are complete and an open house is held Nov. 23. An empty retail space has become Cloverdale Common, which displays possible redevelopment scenarios, stages art shows and plays host to the community for discussions.

"We are getting community feedback for what they will want to see. That's the inverse of what usually happens: developing a plan and then asking for comment," Mr. Gilbank says. QuadReal plans to submit a zoning application to the City of Toronto in March, 2020.

Retail will still be the backbone of the project, says Ralph Giannone, principal with Toronto's Giannone Petricone Associates Architects Inc., which is tasked with developing Cloverdale's master plan for redevelopment.

The idea is to make Cloverdale a fully integrated part of the community. The working vision, he says, is a village on a park along with mid- and high-rise residential buildings - a dynamic hybrid of suburb and downtown where people can live and work.

Underground parking will be paramount in order to free up as much surface space as possible for squares and parks and trails, entertainment and recreation venues. The residential component will increase demand for more restaurants and stores that appeal to multiple generations.

"There was a wonderful optimism as the suburbs developed quickly, but these sites were single-use and now the stars have realigned and big fields of asphalt and cars parked 100 metres away from the store is not the most sustainable for the future," Mr. Giannone says.

"There's always nervousness about change and we have to respect that," he continues, "but there is a great opportunity in rethinking aging retailing. Listening to the neighbours about their expectations is important for long-term success."

The concerns of the community are both short term and long term, he says. "They want to know what it's going to mean to them as well as their grandkids. A lot of questions about how retail will change and whether it will still be affordable. They want parkland and a lot of people want to get on wait lists for the housing and seniors' community so they can stay in the area as they age."

MID-SIZED MALLS OFFER NEW OBSTACLES While large regional malls will remain essential to the needs of suburbia, the future of mid-sized community shopping centres that have fallen behind the times is less clear.

An example is Stonegate Plaza, an L-shaped strip mall a few kilometres east of Cloverdale that was recently demolished in order to recreate the 5.5-acre site with a focus on mid-rise residential.

According to Andrew Muffitt - a partner at Kohn Partnership Architects Inc., the firm tasked with designing the Stonegate plan in collaboration with the Vandyk Group of Companies - community involvement was also key to this redevelopment. The developers participated in a number of stakeholder meetings and discussions with the city over a period of several years in coming up with the plan. "With a project like this, we can't just turn the tap on and get it right."

The consensus of the consultations was that the 55-year-old plaza, situated just north of a newer retail complex surrounding the Ontario Food Terminal, had become redundant. In spite of manageable rents, a third of the stores were vacant, many of them family-owned businesses that the next generation was just not interested in taking on.

Situated along transit lines within an enclave of mid-rise residential apartments near the Humber River, the land was deemed too valuable for singlestorey development, particularly with Toronto's high-rise density pushing farther and farther west.

The natural move, Mr. Muffitt says, was to redevelop with a more sensible density and provide more housing for the city. As a result, Phase 1 includes a new health centre, complete with firstfloor pharmacy, as well as a new residential tower with 130 units.

The second phase will see the addition of several more 10- to 12storey residences. Known as the Backyard Neighbourhood Condos, the first phase is scheduled for completion this year and shows that, with a vision and community collaboration, any site is prime for redevelopment.

Associated Graphic

The community flocks to an event at the newly opened Cloverdale Mall in 1956. The shopping centre in suburban Toronto offered nearby residents a reason not to drive downtown.


Cloverdale's first anchor store was a branch of the Montreal-based Morgan's. The space later became a Zellers, then briefly a Target. Of late, it has been nothing more than a vacant box. WALLACE IMMEN

Along with Cloverdale, Vancouver's Oakridge Centre is another example of a decades-old retail-only mall with residential components now being planned.


It's time to let Bong infect your comfortable little world
Word-of-mouth raves for Parasite could make South Korean director a household name in North America
Friday, October 18, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A15

Every week, the film industry offers a fresh slap to the face.

Between the increasing dominance of mindless franchise product and the erosion of substantive films made for discerning audiences, it is difficult to feel hopeful about stepping into the dark of a cinema - as wondrous and transformative an experience as modern life affords.

But this past weekend, salvation reared its head in New York and Los Angeles, where a new film smashed box-office records.

The unlikely culprit: Parasite, a small-scale South Korean drama with no special effects to speak of and zero sequel or spinoff potential to tempt skeptical audiences.

Thanks to audience word-ofmouth and rapturous reviews culled from the film-festival circuit, Parasite earned an average of more than US$128,000 in each of the three theatres it screened, an unheard of figure for a foreignlanguage film, especially one unable to boast a high-concept narrative or internationally renowned star.

Parasite does, however, have one semi-known quantity to boast of: writer and director Bong Joon-ho. Art-house-attuned moviegoers will recognize the name from his early Seoul-based dramas Mother and Memories of Murder, while anyone with a Netflix subscription will recall his genrecrossing satire Okja, or perhaps his politically charged sci-fi thriller Snowpiercer. But for anyone not yet familiar with Bong, Parasite is ready and eager to infect your consciousness and soul, quickly turning you into an eager host for all things Bong.

Following the messy intersection of two modern Seoul families - one clan destitute and scheming for a better life, the other perched comfortably and ignorantly at the upper crust of society - Parasite is exhilarating, thrilling, furious and deeply upsetting. It is also, and here's where things get tricky, extraordinarily surprising, with its story pivoting on a huge twist that arrives one-third through. All of which is to say: Bong hopes you see Parasite, before Parasite becomes inescapable.

"Thankfully, everyone has so far been really co-operative with keeping the spoilers to themselves. I've seen families eating out in Seoul, talking about the film, but once they discover there are people among them who haven't seen it, they got up and left," says Bong, 50. "People are really protective of this film."

It is the opening weekend of the Toronto International Film Festival, and Bong seems deeply exhausted. The director has been discussing - and, well, not discussing - the implications of Parasite's twist since this past May, when the film had its world premiere at Cannes, bowling over critics and capturing the film festival's coveted Palme d'Or. Somehow, as the film has since travelled to Telluride and Toronto (where it would go on to win second runner-up for TIFF's People's Choice Award), Parasite's big reveal has been preserved, a testament to either audiences' newfound ability to keep something special to themselves in an era of instant spoiler-y Twitter tidal waves, or the sheer power that the film carries. Likely both.

"The film has been released in several countries now, and I've begun to see people diving into it as if it were a game - discussing the details, the foreshadowing of the twist, the symbolism in the film," Bong says, "but no one is spoiling it. Mostly everyone, at least in the Korean online community, are talking about poverty and their own experiences. And how it's actually worse than it seems in the movie."

And Parasite makes life on South Korea's lower rung look absolutely awful. Bong introduces the Kim family - Parasite's quasiprotagonists - as sympathetic bottom-feeders, with the foursome occupying an overcrowded basement apartment where the toilet is faulty, the WiFi must be leeched from neighbouring businesses and the air is thick with either the scent of drunkards' urine or the debilitating fog of streetlevel fumigation. Patriarch Kim Ki-taek (Bong regular Song Kangho) is desperate and clever in equal measure, but cannot seem to imagine a world even one step higher. Until, that is, his son, Kiwoo (Choi Woo-sik), sneakily scores a tutoring job for the son of wealthy tech entrepreneur Park Dong-ik (Lee Sun-kyun). Over the course of about two hours, fortunes are changed, lives are upended, and the class tensions of South Korea - or anywhere in the world, really - are stretched till they snap.

"As Korea went through the Korean War and the military dictatorships, we've become a very developed and rich country," Bong explains. "But despite the growth, the gap between the rich and the poor has only widened.

As the country over all seems wealthy and extravagant, there are still so many people who are saying, 'Why are we still struggling?' That sense of inferiority and loss, it's felt. And it's not just emotional, it's physical."

In typical Bong fashion - reminiscent of how Okja's zany corporate satire comes equipped with a too-bizarre-for-words Tilda Swinton, or how The Host's family melodrama is backgrounded by a good old-fashioned monster hunt - Parasite's central themes are delivered in a blessedly shocking manner. The Kim family's slow invasion of the Parks is tightly controlled dark comedy until Bong flips the story on its head to produce a shocking and sickening tragedy. As his film's title suggests - who is the real bloodsucker here, the Kims or the Parks? - Bong doesn't so much upend expectations as he dares you to forever abandon yours.

The film also marks a surprising, if perhaps inevitable, return for Bong to his home country. After spending the past half-decade working if not exactly in then explicitly for Hollywood with Snowpiercer and Okja, Parasite finds Bong returning to a more familiar country and language.

"I tend to improvise a lot on set, so it's adjusting dialogue and suggesting new ideas, so it was great to not need a translator this time, and being able to have fun with my actors," Bong says. "But a lot of the joy this time came from not coming back to Korea, but to coming back to films of this size and scale. Working on Parasite was like working on Mother or Memories of Murder. Smaller, controlled, comfortable."

Part of the comfort comes from having actor Song Kang-ho around once again. Although the Korean star had a supporting role in Snowpiercer, the full weight of Parasite rests on Song's sizable shoulders - a task he carries with the dedication and commitment familiar to anyone who has seen him blaze the screen in such Korean hits as Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance and Thirst. His Parasite patriarch, at once beaten down and invigorated by a world that wants nothing to do with him, is one of the more complex and memorable characters that audiences of any culture will encounter this year.

"It's not as if there's a special nerve on the back heel of Song's foot that's connected to my finger, but sometimes it does feel as if we have that connection," Bong says of his relationship with the actor.

"We don't talk a lot on set - we don't discuss the character for hours - but I think Song, as an actor, instinctively understands what I want to say with my script, and what we need to show with a particular scene. There's never been a time when I've disagreed with a decision in his performance."

As Parasite begins to creep further into North America - it opens in Toronto this Friday, before expanding into more Canadian theatres in November - Bong is faced with a sort of Bong-esque dilemma: Should he trust that the typical hopes for a film of his pedigree and provenance will prevail, i.e., that the film will get Academy Award attention in the Best International Film category? Or should he prepare for an upending of his own expectations, and find Parasite instead nominated in the mainstream Best Picture slot, alongside Hollywood's finest? In a tiny way, the film's fate is in his hands.

"Song and I have been members of the [Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences] for the past five years, now that the Academy is trying to increase the diversity of its membership. So this year, we talked about, 'Oh, should we vote for Parasite?' " Bong says with a laugh. "Is it embarrassing?

Is it illegal? But anyway, it's a secret vote."

And secrets are Bong's specialty. He'll keep his, so long as you keep Parasite's.

Associated Graphic

Bong Joon-ho has spent a lot of time talking about Parasite this year, including at TIFF in September, when the film was second runner-up for the People's Choice Award.


Parasite, the new film from Bong Joon-ho, smashed box-office records with screenings in New York and Los Angeles last weekend.

In Vancouver Granville race, symbolism on the ballot
Loyalties split in riding that is a microcosm of Canada, with its patchwork of incomes, ages and ethnicities
Friday, October 18, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A1

VANCOUVER -- Janet Moore's family is like a lot of leftleaning households in Vancouver Granville on the eve of the federal election: hopelessly conflicted.

Ms. Moore, a mother of two politically savvy preteens, thinks she will probably vote for Jody Wilson-Raybould, as she and her husband did in 2015, when she ran under the Liberal banner. The former attorney-general is "exactly the type of person" Ms. Moore wants representing her in Parliament.

The family even has one of Ms. WilsonRaybould's distinctive black campaign signs featuring a sun mask - representing her new beginnings as an independent candidate - on their tidy lawn in the city's rapidly gentrifying Mount Pleasant neighbourhood.

But Ms. Moore also believes climate change is the most pressing issue facing the country, and her dislike of the Conservatives is a shade stronger than her disillusionment with the Liberals. Her husband, meanwhile, is leaning Liberal and she worries he'll cancel her vote if he goes through with it. But he's not there, she says. Not yet.

Normally, Ms. Moore and her husband vote early. For now, the only thing they have decided on is to hold off voting until Election Day so they can make their final choice based on the most up-to-date polling.

They are hardly alone. Some nearby homes have campaign signs for both Ms.

Wilson-Raybould and for Taleeb Noormohamed, the Liberal candidate - signalling divisions within families, and voters themselves. Takeshi Kin, one of those with the dual signage, says he and his wife and daughter are still undecided. Theirs will also be a game-day decision.

Trudeaumania delivered a stunning majority to a party that had entered the 2015 campaign in third place and trending down under Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau.

But the party is fighting to hang on to deeply disenchanted Liberals and left-of-centre voters ahead of Monday's election. "Trudeau-meh-nia," is how political scientist David Moscrop describes the current national sentiment. But this isn't just a test of the Liberals' popularity, - it's also a test of Ms. Wilson-Raybould's own brand and perhaps of her long-term viability in federal politics, which in Canada remains a deeply partisan game.

Vancouver Granville, a patchwork of wildly varying of incomes, ages and ethnic groups, also functions as a microcosm of the country as a whole. The riding, one of a handful of new urban constituencies that debuted in 2015, includes pockets of two wealthy Vancouver neighbourhoods, Shaughnessy and Kerrisdale; working families; seniors; and a vibrant immigrant community with a strong Chinese presence. In 2015, Ms. Wilson-Raybould, a member of the We Wai Kai Nation of northern Vancouver Island, took 44 per cent of the vote. The Conservatives and the NDP - which ran a star candidate who had the endorsement of LeadNow, the strategic voting initiative - each earned 26 per cent.

Symbolically, politically, mathematically, it's hard to imagine there are more important constituencies to the Liberal brain trust. Vancouver Granville was ground zero for the party's implosion that began on Feb.

7, when the former attorney-general's concerns over political interference in the decision to proceed with the prosecution of engineering giant SNC-Lavalin were first made public by The Globe and Mail. This, along with the subsequent ousting of Ms.

Wilson-Raybould and Jane Philpott from the Liberal caucus, and the resignation from the party of another high-profile 2015 recruit, MP Celina Caesar-Chavannes, revealed what critics have suggested is a vindictive, duplicitous streak in Mr. Trudeau.

Taking Vancouver Granville would mark a major symbolic victory. And in a minority government, every seat counts.

Both the Liberals and Ms. Wilson-Raybould say that internal polling has them neck and neck and neither seems to have any idea where the chips will fall. "It's a complete toss up," said one campaign staffer for Mr. Noormohamed.

The riding's remaining support is split among the Conservatives, NDP, the Greens and the People's Party. The Tories' Zach Segal worked for two ministers in Stephen Harper's government. The NDP's Yvonne Hanson, a 24-year-old activist who helped shut down Vancouver's Burrard Street Bridge with the Extinction Rebellion, says she was driven to enter politics out of a fear of a "boiling future." The People's Party is running a one-time staffer from Ms. Wilson-Raybould's constituency office, Naomi Chocyk, a second-generation Canadian whose parents came from then-Communist Poland in 1981. The Greens, meanwhile, have endorsed Ms. Wilson-Raybould.

"Canada's Parliament is better with Jody Wilson-Raybould in it," says party leader Elizabeth May, adding that in a minority parliament, Ms. Wilson-Raybould will have a very important role to play.

Throughout the campaign, both Mr. Segal and Mr. Noormohamed, who worked as an executive on the 2010 Winter Olympics, repeatedly attacked Ms. Wilson-Raybould for lacking a party affiliation.

Mr. Noormohamed worked in the Privy Council Office under both Jean Chrétien and Paul Martin. In 2004, while still a Young Liberal, he almost dethroned Hedy Fry at a nomination battle for Vancouver Centre. In the 2011 federal election, he ran for the Liberals in North Vancouver and, in 2012, he briefly considered a run for the Liberal leadership. Ahead of the last election, he organized a run for the nomination for Vancouver Granville but backed out when the Liberals made it clear they wanted Ms.

Wilson-Raybould to run there. This time around, Mr. Noormohamed was acclaimed without having to face a nomination battle.

On doorsteps, affordability and the outrageous cost of housing in the city are the top issues, he says, not SNC: "People are really struggling. They can't see the light of day on housing and daycare. That is what the issues are."

Still, questions about Mr. Trudeau's integrity are never far from the surface.

In a Kerrisdale gym last week, candidates were asked, "What should Canadians think of Mr. Trudeau's character and leadership?" The question, seemingly aimed at drawing out Ms. Wilson-Raybould, was met with booming laughter as she stared straight ahead, stone-faced.

"I have never been one to cast personal aspersions," Ms. Wilson-Raybould said, avoiding mentioning Mr. Trudeau by name. "I will say this: I believe our political system has got to the point where MPs have become responsible to the Prime Minister and unelected people in the [Prime Minister's Office]." Don't vote for someone to be Ottawa's voice in our riding, she added.

"Get out and vote for the person who can best represent your voice in Ottawa." For Liberals, the split with Ms. WilsonRaybould appears absolute. She says less than 10 per cent of caucus will speak to her, which they do under the cone of silence, fearing reprisals from the PMO. Her mentor, former prime minister Paul Martin, declined comment for this piece. On the Thanksgiving weekend, Bob Rae, the former interim Liberal leader, was out stumping for Mr. Noormohamed, although party strategists are keeping Mr. Trudeau from appearing in the riding.

For her part, Ms. Wilson-Raybould acknowledges that being summarily cast out of the Liberal fold was painful and confusing: "I'm never going to be able to understand it - and I'm glad about that."

Blind loyalty, she added, is precisely what's wrong with the current party system. She argues that too many MPs think of themselves as serving the prime minister or unelected people within the offices of the prime minister and party leaders. In a representative democracy, she says, MPs should be answering to their constituents.

Ms. Wilson-Raybould, unencumbered by Liberal dictates since her ousting, has come out against the Trans Mountain Pipeline expansion. She supports pharmacare and the decriminalization of small amounts of drugs. She remains a strong proponent of electoral reform and says she was "appalled" by the government's recent decision to challenge a landmark humanrights ruling to compensate First Nations children harmed by on-reserve child-welfare systems.

John Moody, a retiree living in Mount Pleasant with his wife, both New Democrats, voted Liberal for the first - and possibly the final - time in the last election.

They're voting for Ms. Wilson-Raybould this time around because she is "straightforward and stands her ground," said Mr.

Moody, saying that his second-favourite Liberal, Ms. Philpott, was also kicked out of the Liberal fold. Imagine, he says, his eyes twinkling conspiratorially, if she and Ms.

Wilson-Raybould held the balance of power in a minority Liberal Parliament?

Associated Graphic

Families are divided over who to vote for in Vancouver Granville, independent candidate Jody Wilson-Raybould or Liberal Taleeb Noormohamed.


Independent candidate for Vancouver Granville Jody Wilson-Raybould speaks during the B.C. Assembly of First Nations annual general meeting at Vancouver's Musqueam Community Centre last month.


Councillor pushes for Vancouver auditor-general
City is only the major urban centre in Canada without an office to review how tax dollars are spent, and Hardwick wants to change that
Friday, October 18, 2019 – Print Edition, Page H4

VANCOUVER -- The City of Toronto has saved more than $300-million in a five-year period because of the work of an independent body that reviewed how taxpayer money was spent. With auditor-general office costs of $25.9-million, that's $11.70 saved for every dollar spent.

With the exception of Vancouver, every major city in Canada has an auditor-general that ensures taxpayers are getting their best value for their dollar and to ensure that city work is efficiently carried out by city staff, including outside contractors.

Vancouver Councillor Colleen Hardwick has introduced a motion to bring an auditor-general to Vancouver city hall, and she's been citing Toronto's example to try to persuade her fellow councilors to vote in favour of the idea.

Beverly Romeo-Beehler is the current auditor-general for Toronto and she focuses on performance audits. Her mandate is broad and includes areas such as transit, leasing, landfill, child care, forestry, construction, development permits, housing and safety. Her work goes beyond financial statements, which just keep score of money. She studies efficiencies, she says.

"The performance audit asks, 'What happened to that money and how was it spent?' " she explains. "If it's gone, did it achieve what they thought it would achieve? And if the money is there, are they investing it and making sure we are getting the best bang for our buck?" For example, her office looked at the 106,650 households on the waiting list for rent-geared-to-income housing and discovered that those most in need were not being given priority. They also found 1,400 social-housing units on average were sitting empty; some of them were being used by contractors as office or storage spaces, or awaiting upgrades instead of being used for emergency housing. The waste was needless.

"You have a housing crisis and people literally dying on the street. People were being housed in these semi-permanent tents that look like something out of the military. And we had empty units that were awaiting demolition, perfectly able to be used. It really opened my eyes," Ms. Romeo-Beehler says. "We have people on the ground out there seeing what is going on. We see the bullet holes. We are 100-per-cent boots on the ground,'with our staff taking photos and videos."

Another investigation found a high rate of fare evasion on streetcars and an overall loss of at least $61-million in 2018 alone.

In another case, the AG office used the Global Positioning System [GPS] logs of tree-pruning contractors to determine that they were billing the City for eight hours a day, when they were only working two hours a day.

The office also discovered that a contractor providing fire safety inspections for major public buildings was not doing the work.

In fact, the person named as the president of the company didn't even exist and neither did the manager in charge of the contract. After a forensic investigation, Ms. Romeo-Beehler found that the City couldn't verify if the more than $900,000 worth of work billed over several years had even been carried out. The case resulted in 58 fire code charges.

City staff and their dependents were also found to be billing millions of dollars in benefits for opioids and other controlled substances, as well as erectile dysfunction medication.

Ms. Romeo-Beehler says Vancouver would greatly benefit from an AG office as well as a tips hotline. Many tips come to her by the existing Fraud and Waste Hotline, but she's also pro-actively addressing key issues that go unnoticed, she says. The AG conducts an investigation and then reports to city council with recommendations. She says she does follow-ups within 18 months to make sure that changes have been implemented.

"We don't determine policy. It's council as an elected body that says, 'We want developers to pay X or put this much in the kitty to fix the streets,' or whatever council says is supreme. They decide.

We make sure management who's carrying it out, does exactly, what council wants them to do and we look at developers and policies and we can ask them for records and we can summon records. We can hold inquiries. An AG has very broad powers."

Ms. Romeo-Beehler has briefed Vancouver city councilors as part of the motion put forward by Ms. Hardwick, who wrote a nine-page report on the role of the auditor-general and estimates the new office would require a budget of about $1-million. That motion will be the topic of discussion at a committee meeting on Oct. 23. It was supposed to be heard a week ago, but Ms. Hardwick was recovering from a car accident.

"God willing I get the votes, because I see this as the single most important motion that I will bring forward," she says.

"This is about performance audits on a wide variety of different areas. For example, 'Why are we spending money putting a greenway down the middle of Granville Bridge? Would that money be better spent in another area?' Those are the kinds of questions that can be answered."

Another area for review she says might be the city's reliance on developer tax levies, such as community amenity contributions.

Cities conduct internal audits, but the auditor-general is different from an internal auditor because the AG is entirely independent of government and has more powers. The AG can access all documents, hold inquiries and examine people under oath.

Ms. Romeo-Beehler says independence is vital. City staff members can't drop by for a chat. As well, auditor-generals in Ontario typically serve terms in order to ensure that they maintain their autonomy.

Stephen Holyday, Toronto deputy mayor, council member and chair of the audit committee, says having the AG report back to council on her findings inspires confidence from the general public.

"For many years we heard about thousands of people on the waiting list for housing and that audit helped us understand that they were sitting in limbo because we couldn't 'get to them,' " Mr. Holyday says. "We learned that the way they were sequenced or prioritized could be done better.

"An auditor finds things that aren't noticed, or things that need to be brought to light and brings them to council, and that's a very important process, that independence," Mr. Holyday says.

Because the AGs in Ontario and other provinces have a successful track record of achieving value-for-money, city governments have generally embraced their role. Ken Hughes, AG for the City of Ottawa, says it's generally accepted that for every dollar spent on an AG, the savings are between $7 to $21.

"I have to tell you, it's a little hard to believe that a city the size of Vancouver doesn't have one," Mr. Hughes says.

As with all auditor-generals, Mr. Hughes is an accountant. He works with a budget of almost $2million with a staff of 10 people.

Ottawa has a population of one million, compared with Vancouver's 700,000. It also has a much bigger operating budget. One of their major investigations revealed abuse at a city-owned seniors' facility that came to him through the anonymous tip-line.

"We take great pride in what we do and it isn't about catching staff out for poor performance.

It's just about making sure that the city is getting maximum value for the money that it's spending," Mr. Hughes says. An AG can serve the city staff, too, because they could look into workplace bullying, for example.

He says an independent set of eyes taking a look at management simply makes for better governance. The AG can offer an important break with the status quo.

"If you have got a situation where you have a very strong mayor or a very strong group of politicians who've been in for a long time, the relationship between those politicians and that staff over time could be impaired and all the more reason why you should have somebody independent who's able to look at the various issues."

Nobody likes having someone look over his or her shoulder, he adds.

"You do have to be conscious of the fact that 99.9 per cent of the staff come into work every day with the intention of delivering the best service they can to the citizens."

Associated Graphic

Beverly Romeo-Beehler, the current auditor-general for Toronto, says her job is not to determine policy but to ensure that taxpayer money was spent in the ways it was intended.

Former Ukraine diplomat opens up about Giuliani meeting
What Telizhenko told Trump's lawyer in their May 17 meeting led to the U.S. President's fateful phone call with Ukraine's Zelensky
Saturday, October 12, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A4

R udy Giuliani and Andriy Telizhenko both love their cigars. For six hours they smoked and ate hamburgers in Mr. Giuliani's New York law office while the former Ukraine diplomat told U.S. President Donald Trump's personal lawyer exactly what he wanted to hear.

What Mr. Telizhenko told Mr.Giuliani in their May 17 meeting - and Mr. Giuliani's willingness to believe the 29-year-old's version of some key events in recent history - helped send the United States down the path to Mr.

Trump's fateful phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. The impeachment hearings that followed have sprung from Mr. Trump's attempts to persuade the Ukrainian leader to open an investigation that could damage former U.S.

vice-president Joe Biden.

Mr. Telizhenko says he told Mr.Giuliani that the Ukrainian embassy in Washington - where he worked as third secretary for seven months before resigning in June, 2016 - had intervened to aid Hillary Clinton's 2016 campaign for the presidency, aiming to help keep Mr. Trump from the White House. Separately, Mr. Telizhenko, who worked in the office of former prosecutor-general Vitaly Yarema before beginning his brief diplomatic career, claimed to know that Mr. Biden, who could be Mr. Trump's Democratic opponent in 2020, had put pressure on Ukraine to drop an investigation of an oil and gas company that Mr.

Biden's son Hunter sat on the board of.

In an interview with The Globe and Mail, Mr. Telizhenko recalled how Mr. Giuliani got excited and took copious notes on a legal pad as Mr. Telizhenko told him how he was asked by Ukraine's ambassador to the U.S. to dig up dirt on Paul Manafort - who briefly served as head of Mr. Trump's campaign after a career in Ukraine, where he helped bring the pro-Russian Viktor Yanukovych to the presidency. Mr. Telizhenko told Mr. Giuliani that he was directed to share what he gathered on Mr. Manafort with a Democratic Party operative.

Mr. Giuliani was equally keen to hear about what Mr. Telizhenko says was Mr. Biden's strong interest in what was and wasn't being investigated by Ukrainian authorities, though anti-corruption activists in Kyiv said Mr. Biden was actually trying to force out a prosecutor-general who was widely viewed as corrupt.

There were plenty of reasons for Mr. Giuliani to question what he was hearing. Much of what Mr.

Telizhenko says is unprovable, based on conversations that he says he was party to. Mr. Telizhenko also says that it was he who sought out Mr. Giuliani, not the other way around. He says he can't remember who paid for his flight to New York.

Mr. Telizhenko says that he does consulting work - "advising him about international relations" - for Pavel Fuks, a Ukrainian oligarch who a decade ago sought to build a Trump Tower in Moscow, a project that never came to fruition. (Mr. Giuliani also counts Mr. Fuks among his clients. A congressional committee is now seeking records of Mr. Giuliani's contacts with various politicians and businessmen in Ukraine, including Mr. Fuks.)

Within days of Mr. Telizhenko's trip to New York, Mr. Giuliani and Mr. Trump had launched a fierce campaign aimed at coercing Mr.Zelensky to look into allegations of Ukrainian meddling in the 2016 election - and to open an investigation into Hunter Biden's business activities in Ukraine.

The pressure campaign culminated in the July 25 phone call between Mr. Trump and Mr. Zelensky. An unnamed whistle-blower who came forward after the call points to the May meeting between Mr. Giuliani and Mr. Telizhenko as one of the building blocks in the saga.

Leaning back in a chair in the lobby of a five-star hotel in Kyiv that he jokingly refers to as "my home," with a cigar in one hand and a $100 glass of Lagavulin whisky in the other, Mr. Telizhenko says he approached Mr. Giuliani because he was disturbed by the role the Ukrainian embassy had played in the U.S. election.

Whether someone believes Mr.Telizhenko - now a full-time political consultant - likely corresponds with whether the listener likes Mr. Trump.

Mr. Giuliani obviously does.

"He was interested in what I was saying," Mr. Telizhenko said, recalling how Mr. Giuliani had a surprisingly deep knowledge of who was beholden to whom in Ukraine's murky mixture of business and politics. At the end, Mr.Trump's lawyer seemed delighted with the encounter. "He said 'Oh Andriy, you've filled a gap for me,'" Mr. Telizhenko recalled. "We still keep in touch. I've met with him numerous times since.'" Mr. Giuliani has acknowledged meeting Mr. Telizhenko, but has refused to comment on what was said. "I can't tell you a thing about the meeting," he told The Washington Post in May. "When I have something to say, I'll say it."

Another Ukrainian named in the whistle-blower's report - Serhiy Leshchenko, a journalist and former member of Ukraine's parliament - says Mr. Telizhenko has been trying to make himself useful to the Trump administration by telling Mr. Giuliani what he wanted to hear.

"The integrity of Mr. Telizhenko is very discussable," Mr. Leshchenko said in an interview at a Kyiv café, where he ordered pasta and tomato juice. He said it defied credibility that an effort to meddle in the U.S. election would run through the Ukrainian embassy's third secretary, who had only moved to Washington a few months earlier. "I do not believe such a conspiracy would be ordered by the ambassador to such a low-level diplomat who is not part of his inner circle."

Mr. Leshchenko is himself a key figure in the narrative that Mr.Trump and Mr. Giuliani have latched onto. According to the whistle-blower's report, Mr. Leshchenko had been identified to Mr.Giuliani as having worked with the U.S. embassy in Kyiv to dig up dirt on Mr. Manafort - including a ledger that Mr. Leshchenko published in 2016, revealing payments Mr. Manafort received from Mr. Yanukovych's Kremlinbacked political party. Mr. Manafort was convicted and jailed last year on charges of "conspiracy to defraud the United States" as well as financial crimes related to those payments.

Despite the court judgment, Mr. Giuliani has repeatedly claimed that the ledger was fake, and part of the effort to damage Mr. Trump.

Mr. Leshchenko says he published the ledger for journalistic reasons, and that the alternative version was fed to Mr. Giuliani by another Ukrainian - the country's former prosecutor-general Yuriy Lutsenko - trying to ingratiate himself to the Trump administration. "His idea was to keep his position as prosecutor-general after the [Ukraine's April presidential] election, to be protected by Giuliani and the Trump team."

In a telephone interview, Mr.Lutsenko dismissed the allegation as "stupid" since the White House did not have the power to appoint the prosecutor-general of Ukraine. He said he spoke with Mr. Giuliani because he thought the U.S. and Ukraine should cooperate not only on looking into the Bidens, as well as Ukraine's role in the 2016 election, but also on the recovery of billions of dollars stolen from the Ukrainian state while Mr. Yanukovych was in power.

Mr. Lutsenko said he and his predecessors in the prosecutorgeneral's office had tried and failed to use official channels to get U.S. co-operation on those three files. He says it was out of frustration that he reached out to Mr. Trump's personal lawyer. "It was in Ukraine's national interest for me to meet Mr. Giuliani to ask for advice about what to do legally to activate these investigations."

Mr. Lutsenko left Ukraine last week and is now in London, where he says he is taking English lessons.

On Wednesday, two Trump donors who were instrumental in gathering evidence about the Bidens' activities in Ukraine were arrested as they tried to leave the country by Washington's Dulles International Airport. Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman were accused of engaging in political activities in the U.S. on behalf of one or more Ukrainian government officials.

Associated Graphic

In an interview in Kyiv with The Globe and Mail, former Ukraine diplomat Andriy Telizhenko recalls how Rudy Giuliani got excited and took copious notes as Mr. Telizhenko told him he was asked by Ukraine's ambassador to the U.S. to dig up dirt on ex-Trump campaign leader Paul Manafort.


The structure, built for the 1976 Games, became known as The Big Owe after it went over budget, but he defended his work and insisted poor construction was to blame
Tuesday, October 8, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B17

In Roger Taillibert's fertile, creative mind, concrete was not a mundane construction material but something plastic and versatile that could be moulded, compressed and shaped into the curved forms that he so loved.

However, in Mr. Taillibert's professional life, he had to deal with the realities of budgetary constraints, striking Quebec trade unions and the obsession with the grandiose that marked Jean Drapeau's tenure as Montreal mayor.

Mr. Taillibert, the French architect who designed Montreal's Olympic Stadium, would see his name associated with one of Canada's great public-works boondoggles, the debt-ridden 1976 Summer Games. His most prominent creation would be labelled a white elephant and dubbed The Big Owe.

In recent years, his name had been rehabilitated by some academics and architecture lovers, who praised the scale and elegance of his monumental stadium and acknowledged that it became an iconic part of the city. This summer, his paintings were exhibited in Quebec and the Montreal journalist Alain Stanké, a long-time friend, prepared a documentary about Mr.Taillibert's life.

However, a fall at his Paris home last month forced the 93year-old Mr. Taillibert to be hospitalized. He was eventually discharged, but died in his sleep at home on Oct. 3, Mr. Stanké said.

He felt his friend, Mr. Taillibert, was a genius whose contribution wasn't properly appreciated. "He was understood by some and misunderstood by others. Circumstances here were unfair to him," Mr. Stanké said in an interview.

The stadium that Mr. Taillibert created could arguably be the most important heritage structure in Montreal, said Luc Noppen, an urban studies professor at the University of Quebec in Montreal.

"Around the world, Montreal is known by the image of that stadium," Prof. Noppen said in an interview. "You show that image and people will say, 'That's Montreal,' more so than [St. Joseph's] Oratory, more so than the Notre Dame Basilica."

The Olympic Stadium is often described as looking like a spaceship or, because of its rib-shaped arches, like a giant extinct creature. Next to the stadium's mast, the Vélodrome, an indoor cycling track also designed by Mr. Taillibert, stands out too, with its sleek contours.

Prof. Noppen lauded Mr. Taillibert's Olympic complex for its dynamic character. "The whole structure exudes a kind of tension, like an athlete who is about to start a sprint, or a diver about to plunge."

Mr. Taillibert often said that he didn't like designs with straight lines and angles, favouring biomorphic shapes that could be fashioned from prestressed concrete. "It allows curves and brings along a more lively space," he told the Quebec weekly Hebdo Rive Nord last July.

He had been handpicked by Mr. Drapeau who, despite his claims that the Montreal Olympics would remain modest, wanted to put a unique stamp on the occasion. At the time, Mr.

Drapeau was basking in the success of Expo 67. Mr. Taillibert, meanwhile, was an up-and-coming architect who had successfully built a series of sporting venues in France.

Roger René Taillibert was born on Jan. 21, 1926, in Châtressur-Cher in central France, near some of the famous castles that dot the valley of the Loire River. His mother, Melina, was a seamstress and his father, Gaston, a cabinetmaker who restored vintage furniture from the Loire châteaux.

Young Roger's first exposure to design and aesthetics came from his father's workshop, and also a childhood trip to Paris, where he was wowed by the Eiffel Tower.

After studying architecture at the École nationale supérieure des Beaux-Arts, he opened his own agency. One of his first projects was a swimming pool in the seaside resort of Deauville. In a concept that was a precursor to Montreal's Vélodrome, he used thin concrete shells and skylights, emphasizing curved lines.

"We designed that pool to be like a wave," he told the newspaper Paris-Normandie.

By the early 1970s, Mr. Taillibert's successful overhaul and expansion of the Parc des Princes stadium in Paris brought him to the attention of Mr. Drapeau. Hired by the mayor without competition, Mr. Taillibert worked without a contract for four years.

Justice Albert Malouf, who later chaired a public inquiry into the costs of the Games, would blame some of the cost overruns on Mr. Drapeau's poor organization and Mr. Taillibert's rigid, demanding attitude.

Construction, which began late, was further delayed by labour strife, absenteeism, corruption and poor co-ordination. A new factory had to be set up to pour the thousands of prefabricated concrete elements that would be the building blocks of the stadium.

At the site, problems started at the bottom. The ground was porous and had to be reinforced by injecting thousands of cubic metres of lean concrete.

Above ground, the stadium enclosure was made up of 34 giant concrete consoles latched together with steel cables. However, workers found that the holes, through which they were to thread the cables, didn't line up. Worse, the epoxy resin used to bind the cables leaked, then hardened and clogged the holes.

Eventually, by November, 1975, the province took over, appointing a board to assume the construction and relieving Mr.

Taillibert of his duties. The Games opened in July, 1976, in an unfinished stadium.

Mr. Taillibert would always say he was singled out for problems beyond his control. "It was a high-quality concept and it was badly constructed. I'm sorry but I'm not the man who did the construction," he said in a 1996 interview to mark the 20th anniversary of the Games. "My name is linked to this because I was used as a scapegoat for all the mistakes that took place."

Back in the 1970s and 80s, that same attitude didn't win him friends as taxpayers faced an Olympic debt that eventually totalled $1.5-billion and took three decades to pay off. (The city had initially forecast after Mr. Taillibert's hiring that the Games would cost $250-million.)

Mr. Taillibert would shrug off budgetary questions, saying that it wasn't part of his job as a consulting architect. He would mention his work in the same breath as he talked about Roman monuments, medieval cathedrals or the Eiffel Tower. "I am not simply an architect or an engineer. I prefer to call myself a builder," he said.

"He was not very tactful. He was rough-edged and that didn't help him. The public prefers people with [a] smoother tongue," Mr. Stanké said.

Mr. Taillibert had been paid $6.9-million for his work, but he sued the province's Olympic Installations Board and the City of Montreal. He was eventually awarded another $2.8-million.

Despite all the acrimony, Mr. Taillibert kept ties with Quebec.

He spent his summers in Saint-Sauveur, in cottage country north of Montreal. He would appear periodically in the media to protest changes made to his Olympic buildings.

The stadium's original retractable roof, made with Kevlar fabric, ripped up several times, then a concrete beam fell. The roof was replaced by a fixed one, and the province is now looking again at installing a model that could be pulled back. In an interview earlier this year, Mr. Taillibert called the replacement roof "a pile of scrap."

Next door to the stadium, the Vélodrome was converted into the Biodôme, a tourist destination housing habitats for plants and animals. Mr. Taillibert hated that his creation had been turned into a home for penguins and parakeets. "They crippled it. You had incompetent surgeons who cut it up," he said.

Mr. Taillibert did not teach, so there is no school of Taillibert disciples carrying his lineage, Prof. Noppen said. "So it is a chapter in contemporary architecture that opened, then ended with him."

Mr. Taillibert leaves a daughter, Sophie. He was predeceased by his wife, Béatrice Pfister.

Associated Graphic

French architect Roger Taillibert attends the launch of an exhibit on the 1976 Olympic Games in Montreal in 2016. Mr. Taillibert designed the site of the Games, Montreal's Olympic Stadium, which is often described as looking like a spaceship or, because of its rib-shaped arches, like a giant extinct creature.


Montreal's Olympic Stadium is seen in 1976, just prior to the opening of the Games.


Natali steps out of the box and into Netflix
The Toronto filmmaker behind Cube returns with an adaptation of In the Tall Grass, twisting the story in his signature style
Thursday, October 17, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A15

Vincenzo Natali is a filmmaker who thinks outside the box, even when he's trapped inside of one. For a certain breed of genre aficionados, the Toronto director is best known as the sick puzzle master behind 1997's Cube, the ultralowbudget Canadian film about a bunch of strangers who find themselves stuck in the titular structure, with attempts to escape it met with gruesome results. For fans of television's Westworld, Hannibal and American Gods, though, Natali's name will seem familiar as a hired gun who's not a hired gun at all - even when realizing other showrunners' visions, Natali brings his own sleek, sharp and supremely creepy sensibilities to the table.

With his new feature film, though, Natali is getting both his largest and paradoxically smallest playground yet: the endless but confining stretch of farmland central to Stephen King and Joe Hill's horror novella, In the Tall Grass. The original story, published in 2012, followed a group of strangers lost in a rural field, which slowly reveals itself to be haunted by malevolent forces.

Natali's adaptation, which was released on Netflix last week, takes the base location of King and Hill's work, but stretches it in strange and gross new ways - a Natali specialty.

Just after the film's streaming premiere, Natali spoke with me about the boon of Netflix, the relative good luck and speed of his career and the blurry line between television and the feature films.

Do you have a sense of how well In the Tall Grass is performing on Netflix? We never hear about viewership until, well, Netflix decides to tell us.

Netflix is so insanely organized that they have certain call dates set up for myself and my team to tell us how it's doing. So, they wait a week or two and give us all the data. It's a wait-and-see moment right now.

From what I understand, it's been a long journey for you and this project. You've been carrying around the script for five years... But that's moving fast in my world - it almost gave me whiplash. I'm highly cynical by nature, and I was pretty frustrated earlier, because listen, this is five people lost in a field, it's Stephen King and Joe Hill, how hard can it be to get it made? But it really took Netflix to make it happen.

Stephen King had a sort of renaissance and Netflix had some good experiences adapting his work, and it worked out.

Netflix has made its hunger for King content known, with its features like 1922 and Gerald's Game. But King adaptations can be very hit or miss. Were you nervous taking on his work?

I was actually excited because I grew up reading King. The Shining, I read it when was 11 years old and it terrified me. But more than that, it was a very psychologically layered book. And the very first script I wrote was an adaptation of a King story called I Am the Doorway. Generally, I've always wanted to do original things, but I actively chased this King property. While the original story is a very simple concept at 60 pages, it's also layered. The more I went into the process of writing it, the more meaning I was able to dig out of it. It's rich, fertile soil.

So once Netflix got on board, it moved quickly?

This isn't a big-budgeted movie, but Netflix is very concerned about quality. They were the first company to ever come to me and ask, "Do you need more days to shoot?" I've totally drunk the Netflix Kool-Aid. If you speak to any other filmmaker who works with them, you'll get a similar response. They are really deferential to filmmakers, and they have the resources to do things that Hollywood won't do any more.

The industry is bifurcated between extremely low-budget movies and extremely high-budget franchises. I always aspired to work in the middle ground, and Netflix has filled that space.

This film was shot in Southern Ontario, but do you have any desire to make another "Canadian" film, quote-unquote?

Honestly, I'll work with whoever is foolish enough to work with me. And I do find the industry here immensely supportive.

When I got started, the equipment houses and labs, they were very generous to me because I couldn't get an [arts council] grant to save my life, and they helped me get my little films made.

Since Cube premiered, the industry has been through remarkable transformations. Today, are you where you hoped you would be?

Yeah, it kind of is actually. As I get older, I realize how insanely lucky I am. I was doing some research recently and there was a study that aggregated all the films made in the past 70 years and found that only 35 per cent of directors ever get to make a second film, and a very small percentage get to make five films in their career. I realized I'm in the very small percentile. And every one of my movies has been made with creative independence - I've never had the films altered in any way. I've been outrageously lucky.

I subscribe to, and this is my one piece of terrible advice for filmmakers, but: Value the process of making things. As a creative person, it's important that you're always in the process of making something all the time.

And the danger of the film industry is it involves a lot of money and people and equipment and salesmanship and all kinds of things in order for something to get made. So, inevitably, it takes a long time. What helps me survive the long dry spells between productions is just making things: a drawing, a piece of music, whatever. That's where the great pleasure derives.

So that would also be the time you spent building up your now-prolific television career?

That's true, because television saved me. I started doing TV for mercenary reasons, because the film industry kept changing and it was becoming financially untenable for me to make feature films exclusively. When I started doing TV, I found it creatively invigorating. It was wonderful to step into these productions and not take complete ownership of them - to be a collaborator and serve someone else's vision, while at the same time giving as much of myself to the project as possible. I think my best work has been on Hannibal and Westworld.

It's a special time right now, because it used to be that TV and movies were two separate worlds.

But it's now a porous kind of industry and I'd argue that what constitutes a feature film and what constitutes a TV show is becoming rather vague. That line is vanishing, especially as we're consuming this stuff on our iPads and televisions at home. It's becoming the same thing, and I mean that in a good way. When I was growing up, TV was the opiate of the masses. Now, television has been better than a lot of commercial films.

So you're optimistic that you can keep making these kinds of movies and having the control that you desire?

It's never easy, but I think for the next five or 10 years, it's not going to slow down. I promise you. And for our young filmmakers, it's an exciting moment to step into it, because it's shifting and malleable in a way that it hasn't been before. There's a lot of money from large tech companies being invested, and money that's not really concerned with the bottom line. It's an attempt to carve out a space in a crowded marketplace with interesting and sensational material. It's my fervent desire that I become more prolific in the next 10 years than in the previous 10 years.

In the Tall Grass is available now on Netflix This interview has been condensed and edited

Associated Graphic

Director Vincenzo Natali, seen during the Sitges Film Festival in Spain on Oct. 3, says Netflix has 'filled the space' between low-budget movies and extremely high-budget franchises.


First Nations sue Ottawa over water service
Although there has been progress, some reserves are still without clean water, which one leader describes as 'woefully inadequate'
Friday, October 11, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A9

F our years after Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau vowed to end all drinking water advisories on First Nations reserves, the federal government faces lawsuits from five First Nations demanding water service equivalent to that enjoyed by other communities in Canada.

The latest legal action is from the Okanagan Indian Band. Chief Byron Louis credits the government for making "significant progress" nationally. But at his own reserve just west of Vernon, B.C.

(known as Okanagan No. 1), only one of its half-dozen water systems has been recently modernized; the others remain little changed from when they were built in the 1970s and 80s. The band's list of complaints is long: occasional detection of coliforms, water that smells like rotten eggs, chronic shortages and band members forced to buy bottled water.

"What they've done is woefully inadequate" at Okanagan No. 1, he said.

This summer, the Okanagan Band sued the Attorney-General of Canada in federal court, seeking an order compelling the government to fund ambitious improvements to its water service.

(In 2017, a consultant drafted a plan the band says would have provided safe, adequate service including fire protection throughout the reserve, at an estimated total cost of $45-million.)

The federal Indigenous Services department expressed surprise over the lawsuit and emphasized that the reserve's water was perfectly safe. The lawsuit is nearly identical to another filed in 2014 by four bands in Alberta: Tsuut'ina Nation, Sucker Creek First Nation, Ermineskin Cree Nation and the Blood Tribe. Although the four bands had effectively agreed to put that suit on hold amid negotiations with the federal government, three of the bands said in a joint statement on Sept. 19 that they've decided to end that ceasefire "because we have been unable to achieve a meaningful resolution to the protracted crisis of unsafe drinking water on our reserves." (The fourth, Tsuut'ina Nation, declined to comment.)

The government said that water quality and infrastructure on those four reserves met federal guidelines, in a written response to The Globe and Mail on Sept. 25.

It added that it had invested $28.4million on improvements since 2014.

These lawsuits highlight the chasm between the water service many First Nations want and what Ottawa is willing to provide.

Since Mr. Trudeau issued his promise during the 2015 election campaign, his government has focused on eliminating "long-term" drinking-water advisories on reserves. (An advisory is a public warning about hazards in drinking water; the most common variety is a boil-water advisory, issued when boiling will eliminate the hazard. The government considers an advisory to be long-term if it lasts longer than one year.)

Federal data show his government has nearly halved the number of such advisories from the 105 in progress as of early 2016, often by building new water-treatment plants or by repairing and upgrading existing ones.

The thrust of the lawsuits is that simply ending advisories won't cut it, and that the federal government is legally obliged to provide reserves with water service equivalent to that enjoyed by Canadians living off reserves.

"We should be able to turn on the taps and get the same assurances that the water coming out is safe, just like Vernon, just like Kelowna," Chief Louis said.

"We want to enjoy what other Canadians take for granted," Chief Jim Badger of Sucker Creek First Nation said.

The government has yet to file a defence to the Okanagan Band's claim. In response to the earlier 2014 lawsuit, the government stated: "In answer to the claim as a whole, Canada denies it has any obligation or duty to the plaintiffs, as alleged or at all."

The notion that First Nations deserve the same quality of water service as everybody else isn't new. A federal cabinet decision in 1977 envisioned providing reserves with physical infrastructure "similar to that available in neighbouring, non-Indian communities or comparable locations." Given the small size and remoteness of many reserves, however, achieving equality would be expensive, particularly on a perhome basis.

That reality is evident on Okanagan No. 1. Much of the reserve is undeveloped, but there are several small clusters of homes dispersed across its lands, mostly along the shores of Okanagan Lake. Each small community is served by its own small centralized water system serving at most a few hundred homes.

When water consultant Bill Berzins toured those systems in May, he concluded the community's wells were at risk of contamination. Above what is known as the Head of Lake system, for example, there were homes with septic systems. There's also a nearby golf course, which Mr. Berzins suspected might be applying fertilizer. There were cattle and dairy farms upstream, and unusually high water demand suggested leaky pipes.

Moreover, the community's water wasn't being disinfected between the wells and residents' taps. "In any small communities or, rural subdivision - in most communities in Canada - you would see some level of disinfection because it's not costly to do," Mr. Berzins said. "It requires the installation of a simple system."

Disinfection isn't optional in nearby Vernon or Kelowna. "If you take each one of Okanagan's centralized systems and placed it off reserve, immediately adjacent to the reserve, they would all require chlorination under provincial law," said Clayton Leonard, the band's lawyer - a contention confirmed in an interview with Interior Health, the provincial authority regulating drinking water in those non-Indigenous communities.

Federal records show the government has known since at least 2009 that Okanagan No. 1's systems didn't meet its own drinking-water guidelines. However, "systems that are not capable of providing safe drinking water would normally be subject to a drinking-water advisory," the Indigenous Services department said, asserting there were no advisories in progress on Okanagan No. 1.

In fact, there have been several "do not consume" advisories in progress since May, owing to manganese levels above federal guidelines. The First Nations Health Authority (FNHA), which recommends advisories on First Nations lands in B.C. and tracks ones already in progress, does not include that advisory on its official list because it covers only pregnant or breastfeeding women and infants.

But that doesn't mean the FNHA believes Okanagan No. 1's water is safe.

The band provided The Globe reports produced after FNHA inspections of Okanagan No. 1's systems. Those documents revealed that since 2014 the FNHA has repeatedly warned the band of contamination and public-health risks, and has recommended installation of chlorination systems.

The federal government's preoccupation with ending drinkingwater advisories ultimately influenced what it did in Okanagan No.

1. Between 2012 and 2016, it provided $4.1-million to replace the one system that had been experiencing a lengthy advisory. The Bradley Creek and Six Mile water systems were joined to a new well, reservoir and water-treatment plant that included disinfection.

The advisory was lifted in 2015, but many of the reserve's other water-quality problems were not addressed.

Indigenous Services Canada asserts that bands are responsible for designing, constructing and operating their water infrastructure; the department confines its own role to providing funding and advice, in amounts that have never been clearly defined.

The Sucker Creek 150A reserve near High Prairie, Alta., faces different challenges. Roughly 80 per cent of residents draw their water from cisterns filled with water from the reserve's treatment plant. Chief Badger said the reserve regularly experiences advisories and that he and many other locals buy bottled water. But it's not on the federal government's list of systems experiencing longterm advisories and Chief Badger said little has changed since the band filed its lawsuit in 2014.

"Whenever I look into my own cistern, at any given time I would find three or four mice floating inside," he said. "I can go to Slave Lake and get a cup of water from the local hotel there and take a drink. I wouldn't dare take a drink of the water here."

Associated Graphic

Chief Byron Louis of the Okanagan Indian Band, seen last month, says that on his reserve, just west of Vernon, B.C., only one of the half-dozen water systems has been modernized.


Toronto law firm swaps stale aesthetic for happier staff
Female lawyers are leading the charge to modernize offices, with amenities such as prayer spaces and rooms for nursing mothers
Special to The Globe and Mail
Tuesday, October 15, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B8

Shara Roy jumped at the chance to refresh the decor of the Bay Street offices of her law firm, Lenczner Slaght LLP. A partner in commercial litigation, she found the reception area - designed a quarter century ago - to be dark, dated and overtly masculine. Considering that about 40 per cent of the firm's employees are women, it's safe to assume that she probably wasn't the only one who felt this way.

"It had very strong colours and lots of wood, and it was right for the time," she says. "But the firm has changed in 27 years and we've gone from being a small boutique firm to an enterprise that has over 70 lawyers and more than 100 support staff."

A CHANCE AT RENEWAL When the firm renewed and expanded its lease with Oxford Properties, taking over another floor in the building at Adelaide Street West and York Street, Ms.Roy became the lead planner for the much-needed update. In visiting other professional offices to survey design trends, she found that, while many accounting offices had gone to more open concepts, individual offices remained a staple in law firms to ensure client confidentiality.

The firm's year-long rejuvenation project has become a journey of innovation that's not only resulted in a brighter, more welcoming office, but has also incorporated thoughtful amenities for staff, including a prayer and meditation room and another room for nursing mothers.

Surveying the employees, it was clear they wanted to see more natural light and areas for collaboration.

"We found a lot of the younger lawyers were booking boardrooms to get together, so they didn't feel so isolated in their offices," Ms. Roy says. She also saw the need to brighten the reception area for clients. "We were going for a calming feel, because people come to us on some of their worst days. We guide corporations that are going under, CEOs who are facing a class-action suit and people facing removal from their professions. We wanted the space to feel welcoming and professional at the same time."

UPDATING, NOT RECREATING, IS KEY The firm brought in Torontobased interior designers, Bartlett & Associates, which advised them to update, rather than completely replace, the office features. "It's always much easier to start from scratch than to reuse materials, but in this case, the elegant woods and stone in the office were just too good to discard," Inger Bartlett, the design team's president, says.

Instead, Ms. Bartlett recommended preserving much of the cherry wood detailing from the existing space and refreshing it with walnut features that would both contrast and complement the lighter wood. There were innovative options for opening up the previously dark, walled-in reception area to allow more natural light. As well, there was an opportunity to create a signature internal staircase to connect the three floors the firm now occupied. Previously, the only way to get from floor to floor had been by elevator.

Elsewhere, the renovation turned former offices into amenity spaces for lawyers and staff, including a gender-inclusive washroom, a private room for nursing mothers, a prayer and meditation room and a collaborative space for use by all members of the firm.

BLEND OF ELEMENTS CREATES UNIQUE, WELCOMING NEW SPACE The design morphed into a blend of traditional and modern elements. "They were looking at branding and being seen as more progressive as they look to the future," Ms. Bartlett says. "They also had to reflect the fact they are a top litigator in Canada and a lot of very high-profile people are clients coming into the office."

A progression of natural materials keeps the aesthetic professional, yet different from other law firms, Ms. Bartlett says. For the elevator lobby wall, the firm chose coffee-hued Eramosa limestone from the Mississauga location of tile supplier, Ciot. The floor is porcelain tile that mimics the look of real wood.

At the same time, there are deliberate touches of whimsy. For instance, the names on the conference rooms include the O.R., a space which is decorated with medical texts, as well as the Hangar and the Dining Room.

The transformation has not all been smooth sailing. Cutting an opening for the staircase required the relocation of an entire beam, and a dedicated structure had to be built to support the weight of a sculptural wood wall.

The staircase also features dozens of handcrafted glass lamps made by Canadian lighting design company Bocci, each of which had to be connected individually from the ceiling.

Perhaps, the most noticeable change was the removal of an entire wall adjacent to the reception area that had previously formed part of a large board room, necessary in order to open up the space to natural light and views of the city.

Taking its place is a partition wall made by Montreal-based company, Skyfold, that accordions up into the ceiling, but can easily be lowered to create a soundproof confidential meeting space when needed. The segmented boardroom table can even be scaled to suit the size of the meeting taking place.

A NEW SPACE ON A SEAMLESS TIMELINE The project was tackled in multiple phases over the course of a year to allow work to carry on seamlessly at the firm. Ms.Bartlett worked closely with the contractors and with Lenczner Slaght stakeholders to create swing space and to schedule construction around the firm's need to keep things running smoothly throughout.

"That became quite a complex dance working around individual staff schedules," Ms. Bartlett says. "For instance, we couldn't have the flooring ripped out of an office the same week its occupant was scheduled for the Supreme Court." Although the public spaces are complete, work is continuing, with a lunchroom still to be added, and the firm is eyeing expansion to an additional floor in the near future.

Bartlett & Associates has won two prizes for this project. One is an American Society of Interior Designers 2019 Professional Design Award in the Large Commercial Interiors category. The second, in the Outside-the-Box category, was awarded for the Bocci lighting installation and sculptural wall feature.

Ms. Roy was also recently honoured by being named one of the Top 25 Most Influential Lawyers of 2019 by Canadian Lawyer magazine. This past spring, she and fellow lawyer Sana Halwani launched a unique initiative called ReferToHer, a database listing of qualified female legal specialists that will be updated periodically, with the goal of increasing referrals to women throughout Canada.

"We found from individual experience and research that, in referral work, which is the lifeblood of private practice lawyers, both women and men tend to refer work to men," she says. "We did not want to disenfranchise male partners, but to make sure that top female litigators are considered at the same time as their male counterparts."

Ms. Roy is still contemplating a number of other changes for the office. "I would like to upgrade our prayer space to make it more calming than it is now.

(Currently it's a 10-foot by 12-foot former office that is carpeted but boasts a view.) I also think we need to get away from the typical law firm mounds of paper. Large areas of our space are taken up by copiers and filing cabinets. I see that all changing to electronic storage over the next five years, which will free up more space."

All the work completed so far has been supported enthusiastically by the staff, Ms. Roy says.

"I'm receiving e-mails from staff members saying how proud they feel to work in a place that puts this much effort into how we live at work. We spend a lot of time here and it's gratifying to hear that kind of feedback."

Associated Graphic

Shara Roy, partner at Lenczner Slaght LLP, says she jumped at the chance to update the firm's offices, and says she wanted to create a calming feel for clients who are often coming to the office on their worst days. A corner of the reception area, top, can now be opened or closed off for meetings or gatherings, while handmade glass lights adorn a new staircase, above.


A new take on co-living comes to Toronto
Friday, October 11, 2019 – Print Edition, Page H6

TORONTO -- A growing trend in rental property management is to convert apartments, houses and townhouses to socalled "co-living" spaces that attempt to add a service layer onto the age-old practice of lodging with roommates.

For Gaurav Madani and his business partner Arnab Dastidar, who founded co-living startup SoulRooms in July, their own experiences in Toronto's property market convinced them of the need for co-living options.

"Finding a roommate on Craigslist is actually searching the darknet," Mr. Dastidar said, expressing a fear he felt personally as he searched for accommodations in the city. They target their service at people who have no trusted friend or partner to share a room with, and may have no credit score because they recently immigrated to the country. He and Mr. Madani were, until recently, international students from India getting their MBA degrees at York University's Schulich School of Business. When they moved to Toronto, "we went through the whole experience ... we figured out that there was something we could do about this."

The pair got started by signing up to take over management of several condominium apartments from Zahra Properties, which claims to have more than 200 apartments under management in the city.

"Zahra Properties is our major strategic partner. We lease properties owned/managed by Zahra Properties since they greatly align with our vision," said Mr. Madani, who also said that Zahra has no financial stake in SoulRooms. "We are working out of their offices currently and using their resources and network to acquire new properties ... using their office space and supplies, utilities, vendors, reception facility and, most importantly, coffee machine."

In 2018, two Zahra Properties employees were connected to a Landlord Tenant Board case in which a condo investor found out the tenant she was leasing to was listing her apartment on Airbnb without her knowledge or consent. One of the Zahra employees was ultimately fined $4,400 for damage to the unit. Zahra owner Afzal Nathoo told the CBC his company had no connection to his employee's activities.

Unlike some co-living properties that try to sandwich anywhere between six and 10 people into one shared house, SoulRooms focuses on three-bedroom apartments or townhouses.

"We started in June. We have about 45 individuals renting now.

We are adding 15 rooms every month," Mr. Madani said. "We have people from Ireland, Croatia, Brazil, Nigeria, China, India, France, Australia. We are trying to get to 100 units by the end of November."

There are already a number of homegrown co-living companies operating in Toronto, including Milyou, founded by real estate investor Mat Abramsky, who comes to co-living with a family history of student housing management in Kingston and has opened two houses in Toronto with seven residents so far. He saw co-living take off while working in private equity companies in Britain, and is looking to finance Milyou's first purpose-built rental in the 25-50 bed range. "We had a 20-per-cent increase in the number of people roommating in Toronto in the last two censuses," he said. "We're sharing space as it is, so how do we take the pain out of that?" In Toronto, the number of nonfamily households with two or more residents (the Census description captures roommates and sibling cohabitation) increased by 38 per cent in 10 years: from 49,045 in 2006 to 59,750 in 2011, hitting 68,010 by 2016.

Across the GTHA, the number of such households hit 104,545 in 2016. That is the fastest-growing cohort of household types in the entire region, although it still represents a minority in absolute terms (Census 2016 recorded 2.5 million households in the GTHA, up 372,280 since 2006).

Toronto tenants are under pressure to buddy-up because of record low vacancy rates and rapidly rising rents. Take the example of Matthew Palm, a postdoctoral research fellow in human geography at University of Toronto, Scarborough.

"I saw an ad to live in a den in a one-bedroom new condo, and I gave it a go. The landlord stitched up some curtains, put a bed in there and said, 'okay, you can rent this for $1,100.' It's sort of like a luxury boarding room in the sky," he said. He didn't know his roommate before he moved in, but tiptoeing and earplugs have helped to keep the peace between the two.

"To the average person, that might sound crazy, but I'm not going to lie to you, I see it as a bargain. If you're a single person and you make $60,000, your posttax income is $35,000 and you just can't find a studio for $1,300. I could spend half my income on my rent, and then I'm not saving up and I'm seeing my family less often [he's from California, originally]."

Mr. Palm's income is right in the sweet-spot for co-living operators: A study by commercial real estate services company Colliers International pegged the ideal demographic as earning between $30,000 and $75,000 and hoping to live in the densest most expensive parts of the host cities.

But becoming a roommate matchmaker for middle-income young people is not what draws operators to this model. In a report on co-living by Cushman and Wakefield published in May, the commercial property specialists said, "typically, co-living providers include additional services and perks, including fully furnished units, all utilities included, hosted community events and even housekeeping, which in the aggregate represent as much as a 20 per cent discount to living alone."

"For the operator, this opens new avenues to differentiate their product, taps into a large renter base not currently served by topend luxury product, and maximizes revenue on a per square foot basis. Given long-term demographic trends and the continued tightening of the housing market, co-living sits on the precipice of rapid expansion.

"Ultimately, due to societal shifts, renting has become a viable, destigmatized housing choice, rather than just an economic necessity," the report says.

For SoulRooms, renting each room separately maximizes revenues per square foot and lowers vacancy rates; SoulRooms claims 96-per-cent occupancy, with a minimum term of three months.

Unlike traditional single-room occupancy housing in Toronto, often the domain of some of the city's poorest residents, the co-living operators seek to make a virtue of sharing by emphasizing downtown location and services: WiFi and social-group programming (barbecues, movie nights and so on) seem to go a long way toward creating a price premium.

The upshot is they charge almost the same price for a single room in downtown Toronto that a renter might be able to find in a less-desirable basement apartment or inner-suburb studio.

For instance, Milyou offers rooms in Cabbagetown for $1,900 a month, and while a solo-renter could pay $2,000 a month for a one-bedroom basement apartment, there's not many one-bedrooms available above-ground at Milyou's price. A three-bedroom house could run close to $5,000 a month, but then roommates would be on the hook for a year's rent (at a cheaper rate, closer to $1,600 a room) and roomies are stuck with a chore rota to clean up the bathrooms and kitchens themselves.

SoulRooms has three price tiers: a 95 square foot "cozy" option ($1,425 for single-room-occupancy, shared bathroom), 130square-foot "mid-size" ($1,595 for slightly larger single room) and similar sized en-suite, which has a private washroom ($1,900$2,050).

Associated Graphic

A Cushman and Wakefield report on co-living says providers typically 'include additional services and perks' with their rental opportunities, such as SoulRooms' furnished units seen here.


Campus1, an 886-bed facility, has a great deal of luxury amenities including a ground-floor 'Inspiration Room' for informal gatherings, movie nights and other events; a cardio and yoga studio; a fully equipped fitness centre with a mini basketball court; a cafeteria and a games room.

Five costs that kill your investment returns
You can't focus your search on affordable commissions alone
Saturday, October 12, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B13

A fee war is driving online brokerage commissions to zero in the United States, a spectacle that is going to divert investor attention from more pressing matters.

Competition to lower fees is never a bad thing in the investing industry, but it sometimes amounts to a sideshow. Brokerage commissions are an example - even at the rates charged to Canadian investors (as much as $9.99 per buy or sell), they're not a top concern for people investing for the long term as opposed to short-term speculation.

By all means, check out brokers with low commissions. In Canada, this group includes CIBC Investor's Edge, HSBC InvestDirect, Interactive Brokers, Questrade and Virtual Brokers, all with markedly lower costs than the big bank-owned firms that dominate the sector. On Oct. 15, National Bank Direct Brokerage will introduce a new pricing plan offering young investors (aged 18 to 30) 10 free trades a year plus additional trades at $4.95, and $6.95 trades for National Bank clients with a bank account connected to the NBDB platform.

Others pay the usual $9.95 flat.

Don't focus your search for low costs on commissions alone, though. There are five other costs that do more damage to the portfolios of do-it-yourself investors: 1. FOREIGN-EXCHANGE FEES Forex is a profit centre for online brokers. Investors add Canadian dollars to their account and have it converted by their broker into U.S. currency to buy U.S.-listed stocks and exchange-traded funds. For that service, brokers will mark up the wholesale rate paid by the largest institutions to build in a tidy profit margin.

In my latest online brokerage ranking, I asked firms to provide the cost of an investment in U.S.

shares on a particular day. The markup over the rate published by the Bank of Canada can be as much as 1.5 per cent.

What to do: Use TSX-listed ETFs for exposure to the U.S. market.

Accessing the U.S. market this way allows you to tap into the preferential exchange rate that ETF companies get compared with the rate retail investors pay.

If you invest in U.S. stocks in a registered retirement savings plan, registered retirement income fund or tax-free savings account, make sure your broker offers a U.S.-dollar version of these accounts (this is commonly available for non-registered accounts). In a Canadian-dollar RRSP, RRIF or TFSA account, your U.S. dividends and the proceeds from the sale of U.S. securities will be automatically exchanged into Canadian dollars and you'll be charged accordingly. Another option is a fairly advanced technique for changing Canadian dollars into U.S. currency called Norbert's Gambit.

2. ADMINISTRATION, MAINTENANCE, LOW-BALANCE OR INACTIVITY FEES Slowly, the brokerage business is moving toward a standard fee, usually $25 or $30 a quarter, for clients who have small account balances or inactive accounts where no trades are generated.

Some firms apply these fees only to cash accounts, others to all accounts.

A few brokers also charge annual administration fees of $100 on RRSPs and RRIFs with balances below $10,000 to $25,000.

Account maintenance fees can sometimes be avoided by, for example, setting up preauthorized contributions to your account, by having both a cash account and a registered account, or by making a few trades. If you do end up paying a $100 fee on a $12,000 account over a year, your returns are reduced by 0.83 per cent.

What to do: If you're starting out as an investor or have a modest balance, don't open an account with a broker before you find out (a) what maintenance, inactivity or admin fees you might have to pay and (b) what steps you can take to avoid these fees. You do not want to learn about these fees after seeing them deducted from your account.

3. ETF FEES The cost of owning a portfolio of basic index-tracking ETFs is within sight of zero - as low as 0.06 per cent or so for Canadian equity funds. But in its drive to grow, the ETF industry has introduced a new generation of products with more complex strategies and fees of 0.5 per cent to 0.7 per cent, or higher.

We're talking here about the management expense ratio (MER), the most important indicator of the cost of owning a fund. You also have to be alert to the trading expense ratio, or TER, which tells you the costs a fund incurs for trading the securities in the portfolio. Basic indextracking ETFs don't do enough trading to even have a TER - you'll see it expressed as zero.

But actively managed ETFs may do enough trading to have a significant TER. If there is a TER, add it to the MER to get your allin cost.

TERs are listed in the management reports on fund performance that are available for all ETFs and mutual funds. You can find the management report for an ETF by going to its profile on the issuing company's website and looking for the "documents" link. When you have the management report open, head to the "ratios" section.

What to do: Be cautious about buying higher-fee ETFs unless you're convinced they add value beyond the cheaper core ETFs tracking basic stock and bond indexes. Always check the TER for funds that are actively managed or use a screening process. You get a five-year view of the MER and TER when viewing the management report. Look for funds with declining MERs and consistently low TERs.

4. MUTUAL FUND FEES Note to the investors who held a collective $35-billion in mutual funds at online brokers as of March: Unless you own a Series D version of a fund, you're very likely overpaying on fees in a big way. Series D funds are for do-ityourself investors who neither want nor receive advice. They have lower MERs than standard funds because they have largely stripped out payments to advisers and their firms, known as trailing commissions.

Trailing commissions can account for 0.5 to one percentage point of a fund's MER, so they're significant. Minimizing them is crucial if you're a DIY investor because online brokers are prohibited by regulators from offering the kind of service and advice that advisers provide. You do not want to pay for service you'll never get.

Online brokers typically default clients to Series D funds when placing orders, providing they're available. Brokers have also taken steps to get long-time fund-holding clients to switch to Series D. Still, it's possible that some investors still hold conventional funds with full trailers in their DIY accounts.

What to do: Stick to Series D funds, or funds offered by lowfee fund companies that don't pay trailing commissions. Examples are Mawer, Leith Wheeler, Steadyhand and GBC. Also, check any funds you've owned for many years to ensure you're not paying full trailers.

5. TRANSFER AND WITHDRAWAL FEES Brokers typically charge about $50 if you withdraw money from an RRSP (partial, not the full account). On RRIFs, most brokers let you make scheduled withdrawals at no cost, but charge $25 or $50 for extra ones. To date, there seem to be no fees for taking money out of a TFSA.

The highest transfer fees apply when you move your account to another investment firm. They range from $125 to $150 and apply to all types of accounts.

What to do: When transferring an account to another firm, ask it to pick up the tab for your previous broker's transfer-out fee.

Associated Graphic

Traders work at the NYSE on Oct 3. To save on foreign-exchange fees, use TSX-listed ETFs for exposure to the U.S. market. This method allows you to tap into the preferential exchange rate that ETF companies get compared with the rate retail investors pay.


Canada and South Africa have a history at the Rugby World Cup
The teams will meet this year for just the third time ever, but a testy 1995 match against host Springboks in a postapartheid climate is a tough one to forget
Tuesday, October 8, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B13

Former Canada captain Gareth Rees can't escape the memory of getting sent off at the 1995 Rugby World Cup.

People often bring up the volcanic 20-0 loss to host South Africa in the socalled Battle of Boet Erasmus, named after the stadium in Port Elizabeth where the fight-filled game took place.

Plus, Irish referee David McHugh, who also ejected Canadian prop Rod Snow and Springboks hooker James Dalton, gave Rees the red card he brandished after the game's infamous second-half brawl. The card, framed in a picture of Rees and Snow with a note from McHugh, is on display in Rees's home.

"It's funny, for all the rugby I played, it's the one [game] most people know me for or remember," said Rees, currently serving as media manager for the Canadian team at the Rugby World Cup in Japan.

"I'm not proud of being sent off, but I don't regret my actions. ... I was the captain and that [Canadian] group was very much one in, all in," he added.

The Canadian men, ranked 22nd in the world, face No. 5 South Africa on Tuesday in Kobe in just the third-ever meeting between the two countries (the visiting Canadians lost 51-18 when the two played in East London in June, 2000).

Canada is 0-2-0 at the tournament in Japan after losing 48-7 to Italy and 63-0 to New Zealand. The Springboks lost 23-13 to New Zealand and defeated Namibia 57-3.

Drawn in a tough pool in 1995, the Canadians opened with a 34-3 win over Romania before falling 27-11 to defending champion Australia. The Springboks had beaten both Australia (27-18) and Romania (21-8).

It was a historic time.

Rugby was on the cusp of going professional. And South Africa was transforming under Nelson Mandela. As captured in the film Invictus, Mandela found a way to use the Springboks' World Cup campaign as a unifying force in a country that had been pulled apart by apartheid.

The Canadians were well aware that the spotlight was on the tournament.

"We were really juiced to play South Africa - in South Africa, in a World Cup, with the political climate as it was. Everything was on the line in this game," said forward Al Charron, like Rees a member of the World Rugby Hall of Fame.

There was drama from the get-go as the stadium floodlights failed seconds before kickoff. With the stadium dark, the teams returned to the dressing rooms. The game eventually got under way 45 minutes late.

Knowing its lineout would not stand up to the Springboks, Canada elected not to kick for territory and kept the ball in hand.

The bad blood surfaced early.

Charron calls it "probably the dirtiest, hardest game I was ever in."

Canadian fullback Scott Stewart was taken out in the air twice.

"We were a proud team, proud players," winger Dave Lougheed said. "We weren't going to give up anything to the South Africans. And that's the way we played."

Neither team backed off an inch.

"Had it just been a clean rugby game, I think South Africa is the easy winner on the day," Snow said. "But for whatever reason - I think it has a lot to do with the kind of South African rugby mentality - they thought 'Well winning the game is not enough. We want to bully the guys and beat them up as well.' "And I think that played into our hands because we knew we couldn't keep with them on the skill level. But if [it] turned into a wrestling match, we had a good chance.

And that's basically what happened. We more than held our own from that perspective."

Video highlights do not do the game justice, according to Charron.

"There was stuff going on in that game that the referee wasn't dealing with properly," he said. "Then we started taking things into our hands, sort of."

"It was pre-digital so there weren't 42 camera angles," Lougheed said.

Under pressure in the scrum, Canada trailed 17-0 at the half after conceding a penalty and two pushover tries. A Joel Stransky penalty made it 20-0 early in the second half. And then the fun began.

A flowing Canadian attack sent the ball wide to the right.

Centre Christian Stewart passed to winger Winston Stanley, who lost the ball at the sideline, only to be hit out of bounds by Pieter Hendriks.

Then two tussled, grabbing fistfuls of each other's jersey at the advertising hoarding. Then Stewart raced in like a guided missile, barrelling into Hendriks - which in turn prompted Dalton to enter the fray.

Players went down, with several subsequent melees.

"It would start, it would stop, it would start, it would stop," said Charron, who tried to serve as peacemaker given he was on already on a warning from the referee.

After spotting Stewart getting pulled out by two Springboks and getting suckerpunched from behind, Rees launched himself into the fray.

"I'm not known for my fighting skills," Rees said with a laugh.

Charron remembers Rees swinging and missing, falling to the ground with several Springboks advancing on him. Looking to protect his teammate while not instigating matters, Charron jumped on top of him.

"That's the only thing I could think possible to do. Because I'd rather take the punches than our captain and our fly half take the punches," Charron said.

Snow ran into the ball of players was grabbed from behind by giant South African lock Hannes Strydom. Remembering his wrestling background, Snow managed to roll over the big man.

"At that stage, you feel like you're fighting for your life," Snow said.

Strydom was left bleeding above the eye.

When order was restored, McHugh consulted with his touch judges.

"Of the 30 guys on the field, he probably could have picked 18 to 20 guys to send off," Charron said. "How he ended up picking Dalton, Gareth and Rod, I don't know."

The three ejections were a record in a rugby test match.

Charron and some of his teammates were unhappy at the way the game was covered in the media, with British newspapers referencing Canada's hockey mentality.

"It takes two to tango and I think we were the ones who were asked to the dance. And we eventually accepted," Charron said with a wry laugh.

Charron also believes the game was closer than the score would indicate. Needing points, the Canadian passed up on several penalty kicks to go for tries.

Ironically, Port Elizabeth had opened its arms to the Canadian team, which played all three of its pool games there. The Canadians had raised funds for local townships and forged friendships.

After the South Africa game, the Canadians ran around the field with a banner thanking Port Elizabeth for its hospitality.

Both Hendriks and Dalton were subsequently banned from the tournament, which allowed winger Chester Williams, a black sporting icon in the country, back into the Bok squad after initially missing selection due to injury. Rees and Snow were suspended for 30 days and Stewart 60 days for their part in the brawl, but their tournament was already over.

Snow remained in South Africa after the tournament to play for Eastern Province in the Currie Cup. He says such rugby flashpoints were common there.

"It was the Wild West," he said. "The game is played differently down there. So it might have been something new for the rest of the world in the sport of rugby to see, but the South Africans would have seen lots of that."

Associated Graphic

Former Canada captain Gareth Rees, seen kicking the ball under pressure from the host team at the 1995 Rugby World Cup in Port Elizabeth, South Africa, says he's not proud he was sent off after the infamous second-half brawl, but doesn't regret his actions. AP

Cape Town's crime crackdown stokes fear among locals
In July, South Africa called the military to help police control gangs and guns, but residents say they face assault, unfair searches
Special to The Globe and Mail
Tuesday, October 15, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A7

CAPE TOWN -- 'When I opened the door, there was an army guy standing with a huge gun in my face," Ishmael Adams said.

The Cape Town man is describing how the South African army and police stormed his home as part of Operation Lockdown, a government initiative to fight crime and violence in the city's 10 deadliest communities, including Mitchells Plain, where Mr. Adams lives.

There was a time when encounters with law enforcement would not have surprised him.

He is a former drug addict. His mother, Connie Daniels, also sold the barbiturate-like sedative Mandarax from their home - often coming into contact with police when she did.

But she stopped participating in the drug economy five years ago, when she got clean. Eventually, the other seven adults in her household stopped using drugs, too. Today, the family volunteers at a local rehab centre.

That's why Mr. Adams was surprised to find a balaclava-clad soldier commanding him to get on the ground. "I wanted to know if he had a search warrant.

He turned the gun around like he wanted to hit me. So I moved back and they came rushing in," Mr. Adams said.

Mr. Adams said the police went on to search his house while he was held at gunpoint by the army, overturning furniture and damaging family belongings.

"After they searched everything, they said the community sent them, saying we are selling drugs and holding guns for people," he said. But, he said, they found nothing.

Since July, 1,300 South African National Defence Force (SANDF) troops have been deployed to help police tackle crime and violence in Cape Town. Deadly gunfights are common in Mitchells Plain and other townships where unemployment, insecurity and poor public-service delivery are commonplace, and gangs grapple to control lucrative narcotics such as Mandarax, methamphetamine and heroin. In 2018, the city's murder rate was 66 killings for every 100,000 people - more than 20 times that of Toronto.

But the search of the Adams home is an example of the ways in which the army intervention is making communities less secure - and it demonstrates how the initiative is ill-suited for an environment where gangs and drugs offer so many people an escape from poverty. Other residents interviewed for this story reported experiencing assault, intimidation, arbitrary arrest, property damage and emotional distress as a result of searches.

"Military deployments tend to escalate violence, or environments of violence," said Simon Howell, a research fellow at the University of Cape Town's Global Risk Governance Programme, where he studies justice and violence. "Gangs are embedded in far deeper social ways than people actually think. As such, deploying the military against [them] ultimately means deploying the military against the community itself."

As a former drug dealer, Ms.Daniels is all too familiar with police procedures, but she said the search of her home was especially invasive. "In the past, when the police came to search your house, if they go to search a room they will take somebody with them. ... They didn't do that."

Rather, she alleges that police rummaged through her property unsupervised.

According to South African Police Service (SAPS) spokesperson Brigadier Vishnu Naidoo, there are standard procedures in all such operations to limit the use of force, although sometimes it is necessary - if authorities are prevented from entering a home, for instance. Although he would not comment on any specific case, he encourages anybody who feels violated by a raid to report the incident to police.

"When raids are conducted, they are done in the best interest of the innocent law-abiding communities," Brig. Naidoo said. "Of course, not everyone will be happy about that, especially not those that are involved in criminality."

Few of those interviewed were willing report their experiences.

"What can I do? It happened and I can do now nothing," said Angelena Dreyer, another Mitchells Plain resident whose house was ransacked.

When police found that a man who was doing gardening work for her was carrying meth, they arrested her - even though she said she had no knowledge of the drugs. She was imprisoned for four days without charge, released without explanation and left to deal with the aftermath of the ordeal. After the incident, her grandchildren were too afraid to stay in the house by themselves out of fear for another raid.

Other Capetonians welcome the army's efforts. Joseph Adams, a volunteer for a Mitchells Plain neighbourhood watch team with more than 100 members, thinks "the army has done a good job so far. ... They deal with these criminals and gangsters with necessary force." Brig. Naidoo contended that "guns and drugs are not always hidden on a premises belonging to so-called drug lords or suspected gangsters." Therefore, he said it is "sometimes prudent to do a sweep across a community without sparing any household from being searched."

The intensified police presence has also led to other instances of violence. While heading into a community meeting, local activist Xolisa Bangani said, "a police van just rushed in front of me, [and an officer asked] me what I was hiding?" When Mr.

Bangani answered that he had committed no crime, police and military personnel responded by beating him. "I couldn't fight back because I assumed they would have amped up the [assault]," he said, displaying marks the beating left on his face and leg.

Mr. Bangani, who is from Khayelitsha, Cape Town's biggest township, does not have a problem with soldiers being used to maintain security, but he believes that military strategies cannot resolve community issues. "They can't come tomorrow and say we need to stop violence, whereas they are using acts of violence to create law and order."

After a month, Operation Lockdown had yielded more than 1,000 arrests and 45 seized firearms. But in mid-August, on the weekend of the project's onemonth mark, violence spiked again in Cape Town and there were 34 murders - a number close to that which prompted the initiative. While new statistics have not since been released, the SANDF deployment has been extended until March. The government has promised a more strategic approach to the extended military support, but did not offer specifics about what this would mean tactically.

Critics have expressed concerns about Operation Lockdown, arguing that armed forces are an excessively militaristic response to problems that many say need to be addressed through community-based initiatives.

They also argue that once the SANDF leaves, the crime and violence will return. Even after the government's shift in strategy, Dr.Howell doubts that the "reactive response" of the army and police can effectively deal with social issues. "The drivers of gangsterism happen to do with economic marginalization, social exclusion and quest for identity," he said.

"The best approach would be to deal with why people are joining gangs in the first place, not dealing with the consequences of them joining gangs."

Mr. Bangani also believes in social solutions to social problems. Security forces could work with activists such as Mr. Bangani, who is involved with projects related to arts, writing, poetry, music, sports and even urban gardening - "anything that will make this community a better place," he said.

He still doesn't know what police were looking for the day they stopped him. "I'm a black man who happens to have [a laptop] in my bag. That was the narrative for me," he says. Although his possessions were returned later at the police station, he says they took his dignity and "they cannot give that back." He also believes a complaint will go nowhere. "I fear the soldiers and the police more than I fear the gangsters," he said.

Associated Graphic

Ishmael Adams re-enacts the day armed South African troops came to his door in Cape Town's Mitchells Plain neighbourhood, which is one of the communities targeted by a military deployment that aims to help police tackle crime.


Swedish probe of Bombardier alleges money laundering
Tuesday, October 8, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A1

LONDON -- Swedish prosecutors have expanded a criminal probe of Bombardier Inc.'s business activities in Azerbaijan to include allegations of money laundering, according to court documents that zero in on the banking activity of the Canadian transportation giant's former Russian partners.

The prosecutors, who allege tens of millions of dollars were siphoned off a 2013 deal to install rail-signalling equipment in the former Soviet republic, were granted access to the records of nine Swiss bank accounts associated with shell companies controlled by a quartet of Russian businessmen who partnered with the Canadian transportation giant on the project.

After a prolonged legal battle, Switzerland's top court granted the Swedish request to see the banking records. Prosecutors requested information about the accounts because the shell companies were under investigation "for corruption offences and money laundering in connection with a tendering process of the state railway company in Azerbaijan," according to the ruling.

The corruption allegations have been widely known since 2017. But the money-laundering allegations add a new element to the prosecution's case and threaten to further complicate Bombardier's efforts to move on from a years-long drama surrounding its business dealings in Russia and surrounding countries.

The nine accounts were controlled by four shell companies.

Among the shell companies is Multiserv Overseas Ltd., a Bombardier Transportation partner on hundreds of millions of dollars' worth of rail business in Russia, Azerbaijan and Mongolia between 2010 and 2017. Bombardier Transportation is the railways arm of Bombardier Inc.

In 2016, a Globe and Mail investigation revealed that Multiserv Overseas, which is registered at a London law office and has a nominal director living in Cyprus, had no apparent business purpose.

The Swedish prosecutors have also obtained access to Swiss accounts associated with the Belizeregistered Renson Trading Ltd., which is the controlling owner of Multiserv Overseas, according to British corporate records.

The decision was handed down by Switzerland's Federal Supreme Court in July. Lawyers for the shell companies had argued the request should be dismissed, because the prosecutors' case was based on "stolen" materials such as the 2016 Panama Papers leaks.

Olivier Marcil, Bombardier's vice-president of external relations, said last week the company was not aware of any new charges and could not comment on the Swiss court proceedings.

"It appears that the Swedish authorities are looking at a new legal angle or theory based on Swedish money laundering statutes. Bombardier was not a party to the Swiss matter, and at this point, we are unable to comment further as no new claims have been brought to our attention and no new information has been provided," he said in an e-mailed reply to questions from The Globe.

Evgeny Pavlov, a regional sales manager at Bombardier Transportation Sweden, the entity that was responsible for the Azerbaijan office, was acquitted by a Stockholm court in 2017 of a bribery charge.

Sweden's National Anti-Corruption Unit is appealing that decision and is also expected to indict at least two other Bombardier Transportation Sweden executives over the Azerbaijan affair.

Among those named as suspects in Swedish court documents are Peter Cedervall, who in 2013 was president of the Bombardier Transportation's Stockholmbased rail control solutions division, and Thomas Bimer, then a regional vice-president and director of sales.

Bombardier's most recent quarterly report to shareholders, published in June, said that while the company's own internal investigation into the Azerbaijan deal was continuing, "no evidence has been uncovered of any corrupt payments made or offered by the corporation to any public official."

Asked about the employment statuses of Mr. Pavlov, Mr. Cedervall and Mr. Bimer, Mr. Marcil replied: "The employees involved in the contracting process for the Azerbaijan project have left the company." He did not explain why, or under what conditions, the men had left the company.

The departures of the Bombardier Transportation Sweden employees follow February's announcement that Laurent Troger had resigned as president of Bombardier Transportation, the Berlin-headquartered centre of the company's rail division.

Despite not being identified as an official partner on the US$340million Azerbaijan deal, Multiserv Overseas served as a profittaking middleman on the project, according to documents reviewed by The Globe. Bombardier sold its signature EbiLock-950 rail-signalling systems to Multiserv Overseas for US$20-million. The shell company, which never took possession of the equipment, then sold the same units to Bombardier's local partner in Azerbaijan for US$104-million.

Another shell company named in the Swiss court documents is Rambo Management, a company that Bombardier says it has no relationship with. Rambo was paid US$23-million by Multiserv Overseas for selling it Bombardier equipment, according to documents made public during the Panama Papers leak.

The fourth shell company named in the Swiss courts was Randinger Inc., a Panama-based entity that shares the same Cyprus office address as the director of Multiserv Overseas, according to incorporation records.

RVMH Avocats, the law firm that represented the shell companies in the Swiss court action, did not reply to e-mails requesting an interview.

The World Bank, which provided 85 per cent of the funding for the Azerbaijan project, is also conducting an audit of how the contract was awarded. The interim findings of the audit, obtained earlier this year by The Globe, contend the Swedish and Russian units of Bombardier Transportation won the 2013 bid via "collusive, corrupt, fraudulent and obstructive practices." The involvement of Multiserv Overseas and another shell company in the Azerbaijan deal is described in the World Bank document as a "sham" that was used as cover for distributing bribes.

Multiserv Overseas was founded by Yuriy Obodovskiy, a Russian rail insider who also served on the board of a Bombardier-Russian Railways joint venture called Elteza. Rambo Management is controlled by another railway industry kingpin, Alexey Krapivin.

The two men are identified in internal Bombardier documents as the company's "Russian partners" alongside two other individuals, Valery Markelov and Boris Usherovich, who are also under investigation in Russia on corruption charges. Mr. Markelov was arrested and jailed last year, accused of paying millions of dollars in bribes to an Interior Ministry official.

Mr. Krapivin and Mr. Obodovskiy are referred to in Bombardier internal documents as associates of former Russian Railways head Vladimir Yakunin. Mr. Yakunin, who is a long-time confidant of Russian President Vladimir Putin, has repeatedly denied any business relationship with Mr. Krapivin or Mr. Obodovskiy.

The men referred to in Bombardier internal documents as its four "Russian partners" were key figures at the Moscow-headquartered Group 1520, the largest contractor serving Russian Railways.

Bombardier has recently moved to disentangle itself from Group 1520 and the once-promising Russian rail business. That effort has included bringing an end to its involvement in Elteza, a partnership between Bombardier and Russian Railways that was launched at a 2010 signing ceremony in Moscow featuring Mr. Yakunin and Bombardier's thenchief executive officer Pierre Beaudoin.

However, Bombardier documents made public by a Swedish court revealed that Bombardier's stake in Elteza was far smaller than the company announced at the time, when Bombardier said it was buying just under 50 per cent of Elteza via a vehicle called BT Signalling BV. In fact Bombardier was a minority shareholder in BT Signalling BV, which had two additional, unpublicized partners: Cyprus-based shell companies controlled by Mr. Krapivin and Mr. Obodovsky.

Mr. Marcil said Bombardier has "over the last months" sold all its shares in Elteza to Group 1520, though he said Bombardier would continue to act as a supplier to the Russian market, having granted Elteza a licence to sell its signalling equipment.

"As our activities in Russia were minimal (accounting for less than 1 per cent of our total BT revenues for 2018), the right conclusion was to monetize our portion of the joint venture," Mr. Marcil said.

"For the short to medium terms, we will focus our business activities within this market on equipment, engineering services and licences."

Friday, October 11, 2019


A Tuesday news article on a Swedish probe of Bombardier incorrectly said three Bombardier Transportation employees left the company after Laurent Troger had resigned as president of Bombardier Transportation. In fact, they left before the resignation.

Dispute leaves hopeful buyers in limbo
Shareholder power struggles have put several of CIM's projects 'in jeopardy,' according to the company's own statements
Friday, October 18, 2019 – Print Edition, Page H3

TORONTO -- Hopeful townhouse buyers are waiting to see if the condominium units they prepurchased in 2016 will ever get built as shareholders wage a power struggle for control of CIM International Group Inc., a publicly traded Toronto area real estate development company. The dispute has caused construction delays and has already put several of the company's projects "in jeopardy," according to the company's own statements.

In recent months CIM's shareholders have been sent several notifications that relate to its investments in three projects, the most advanced of which is the Mackenzie Creek condominium townhouse development at 9900 Markham Rd., in Markham, Ont.

The company has claimed it sold out the 195-unit project to presale purchasers in 2016, although construction has yet to begin. According to the senior lender on that project, it's not that the company has no money, it's that various parties involved can no longer agree on how to move forward.

"My sense is they are all good people, but there's some kind of dispute here and the buyers have sort of gotten in the middle of it. I don't think anyone is trying to defeat the buyers or take advantage of them," said David Morrison, CEO of Morrison Financial Mortgage Corporation. Morrison extended construction financing to the project, as much as $71-million, but says CIM has only drawn about $16-million on the loan and has been meeting its payments throughout the dispute.

"The issue's not money, they have all the money in the world. ... I'm not really taking sides in the whole thing, we're just sort of sitting waiting to hear how it resolves."

At the centre of the story is Jiubin (Jerry) Feng, who until recently was the chief executive officer of CIM and its primary deal maker. Starting in March, 2016, Mr. Feng led the reverse takeover of a listed mining company called Golden Bridge Development Corp. to a diversified real estate company controlled by three entities: CIM Investment & Development LP, Shang Titlist Investment Inc. and Global King Inc. Mr.

Feng is the primary investor in CIM, Xiao Xin Zhang is the director of Shang Titlist and Torontoarea real estate broker Joseph Pang is behind Global King Inc.

In 2017, a company called New Silkroad (which is backed by Beijing-based Macrolink Holding Co.

Ltd.) announced it had paid $31million to invest in a 51-per-cent interest in the Mackenzie Creek project.

The two main parties in the dispute appear to be Mr. Feng and Macrolink.

"He's not the money," Mr. Morrison said of Mr. Feng. "He put together some financing investment from abroad, there's some kind of debate going on between them. They are not crooks or anything like that, this isn't a moneylaundering thing, none of that thing going on at all, it's just somehow some sort of partnership dispute has emerged."

Markham City Councillor Amanda Collucci, whose ward contains the Mackenzie Creek site, said she has been dealing with representatives of Macrolink as she attempted to work on behalf of her constituents. "Macrolink is supposed to be the investor - more like a silent partner.

I don't know what happened, but it seems like one tried to take over the other."

She said fewer than half-a-dozen constituents have contacted her with concerns about the delays, hoping to get their deposits refunded and contracts cancelled. "What I've heard back is those who wanted to get out have been able to get their money back," she said.

CIM is listed on the Canadian Securities Exchange - an alternative exchange launched in 2007 that is popular among blockchain and cannabis investors - and as such must publicly notify investors of material changes in the business. In recent months, an increasing tempo of releases related to resignations and legal actions have highlighted the company's growing corporate difficulties.

On June 13, 2019, CIM named Dianyuan Zhang as chairman of its board, replacing Mr. Feng. It also appointed Maggie Di Guo acting CFO, replacing Dan Fuoco (who had been with the company since its Golden Bridge incarnation). By June 23, Mr. Feng returned as chairman, with the proviso that he would be replaced as CEO after the company's next annual general meeting. Then in July, Ms.

Di Guo resigned as CFO and Xiyuan Yang was appointed interim CFO. In August, CIM's auditor Deloitte resigned, replaced by McGovern Hurley LLP. Several members of the board have left the company as well. On Oct. 4, Helen Min Zou was named CEO of CIM.

None of the principals in CIM responded to multiple attempts to contact them and calls and emails to CIM went unanswered.

In April, 2019, Mr. Pang's Global King Inc. registered a certificate of pending litigation on the land title for 9900 Markham Rd. Ms. Collucci said Mr. Pang's company was the sales agent on the presales of townhouses in Mackenzie Creek. Oftentimes full commissions to sales representatives are not paid out until projects are complete. Mr. Pang did not respond to attempts to contact him.

In May, home builder Averton Developments (Ontario) Inc. put a lien on the property after one of the warring parties listed the plot for sale, a listing that was later withdrawn. According to Averton's co-owner Matthew Lanni, the lien was removed once they were assured it wouldn't be sold.

His company was hired to build the homes for the financiers in 2016 and while communication with the warring partners has been an issue in recent months, he remains hopeful the townhouses will yet materialize.

"We were relying on this project. We are a smaller organization and we're still trying to grow," Mr. Lanni said. "We would love to build it. ... If it doesn't go that way, it will be a shame."

In addition to its delays at Mackenzie Creek, two other development plots CIM invested in were subject to insolvency proceedings and are now for sale.

CIM issued warnings to shareholders about those proceedings in early October, though the insolvency processes began as early as July.

The company says it invested $3,452,500 in a partnership to develop a huge 850-acre lakefront site in Port McNicoll, Ont. In October, CIM warned investors "Skyline (Port McNicoll) Development Inc. has taken enforcement proceedings with respect to a vendor take back mortgage."

CIM also has an interest in a 20acre property at 6910 and 6950 Highway No. 7 East in Markham that Am-Stat Corp. has listed for sale as part of court-ordered insolvency process to recover the $24-million loan it extended to the developers. Commercial real estate company CBRE listed the plot for $75-million; the Port McNicoll plot is listed as negotiable.

On Oct. 10, a Macrolink controlled company called New Silk Road Toronto sent out a news release that it would pay out $41.7million to purchase the remaining securities in the Mackenzie Creek project. The release does acknowledge at least one party has won a court injunction blocking any sales related to the company, so it remains to be seen whether this offer will unlock the project. The project was supposed to also include a second phase with a mix of high-rise residential and retail on part of the land parcel.

"One of the things I can say about this group is they are motivated by a high degree of honour, they want to deliver what they said they'd deliver," Mr. Morrison said. "I think if they could all have their druthers they would just build out these houses even though they are sold under today's market, but whether or not the circumstances allow for that is uncertain to me."

Associated Graphic

The Mackenzie Creek condominium townhouse development in Markham has stalled, as the various companies involved are at odds on the best way to move forward.


Tiny houses, big resistance
Organizers celebrate a win as homeless veterans prepare to move into Calgary community
Special to The Globe and Mail
Friday, October 18, 2019 – Print Edition, Page H5

CALGARY -- Tiny homes may be a hit on TV reality shows, but they can generate unease and resistance when people see entire tiny communities being planned for their neighbourhoods.

Who will live in these tinyhome communities? Will they lead to a degradation of the neighbourhood? Will property values be affected?

Recent history in Alberta shows that how well a developer deals with those fears beforehand will determine the success of their project.

Next month, homeless veterans will begin moving into a community of 15 tiny homes in Calgary's Forest Lawn neighbourhood.

"The project really wouldn't happen without the support of the local community of businesses, individuals and social groups," says David Howard, president and co-founder of the Homes for Heroes Foundation. "All the money was raised through donations."

The homes measure just less than 300 square feet. "They are beautiful homes. It's all hardwood floors, ceiling fans, vaulted ceilings skylight, top-end appliances," Mr. Howard says.

The veterans will have on-site access to a range of services including one-on-one counselling, occupational therapy, physician care, education, training and help finding employment.

The foundation is already working on another tiny-home community for veterans in Edmonton's Evansdale neighbourhood and has plans to expand to three sites in Ontario, in London, Kingston and either Hamilton or Ottawa.

In Calgary, it's estimated there are between 160 and 180 homeless veterans. In Edmonton, the figure is between 180 and 210.

Despite the fact that the Calgary project was for veterans, organizers knew there would be resistance.

"I think there is certainly a small percentage [of people] that have a concern in regards to the type of people that are coming in to their community and we have this mentality of Not In My Back Yard," Mr. Howard says. "But I also believe that once they understand the build, what we're putting in and how we're doing it and the type of people that actually are moving in - [people who have] stood on guard for our country - they really have no further concerns."

The veterans' projects are planned within existing residential areas and that means working with the community to explain the merits of the plans and address their concerns.

In Calgary and Edmonton, they held holding open houses, answered questions and sought feedback on the look and design of the projects, the homes and the open spaces, to ensure that there's a good fit with the neighbourhood.

The result is that locals are excited about the opening in Calgary and are protective of the project, Mr. Howard says. "Overall, we've had amazing support within the communities in Calgary and in the neighbourhood of Edmonton." It was a different story in Okotoks, a town about 45 kilometres south of Calgary with a population of about 30,000. There, a plan to provide 42 tiny-homes in a new community was shot down after concerns raised by some residents.

Okotoks Mayor Bill Robertson says: "One of the unfortunate parts about this is that I had a letter from someone basically saying this is a glorified trailer park and when you build a trailer park you are going to attract 'trailer trash.' That was the exact term used."

He adds: "That is so negative and unfortunate that we would have those people that put a stigma on people living in a certain type of housing. We have a mobile park in Okotoks and there are just some fantastic, salt-of-the-earth people that live there; that take care of their homes, that are model citizens."

The Okotoks project would have provided homes at two sizes, either 380 square feet or 550 square feet. It would have included a mix full ownership, market rentals and subsidized rentals.

The town embarked on the project because the lack of affordable housing had been the No. 2 issue in the town elections two years ago. As a bedroom community for Calgary, house prices in Okotoks are generally expensive.

"When you don't have affordable housing, then there's a certain socio-economic group in your community that really suffers.

Those people that can afford housing can pay the extra money, but there are those that can't afford it and are forced to leave the community," Mr. Robertson says.

It affects the economic vitality of the community, he says, pointing out that it wasn't long ago that a local fast-food restaurant couldn't open in the evening because it couldn't find workers.

Demand for the tiny homes was such that there were between 300 and 400 people keen to get into the project, he says.

"There were so many positive attributes, I didn't foresee the negativity rising up against it," the mayor says. "We were a little remiss in letting the 'negative Nellies,' so to speak, get hold ... of social media - and social media can run rampant. I don't think we countered with enough ... accurate information."

The Calgary tiny-homes community will be run by the Mustard Seed, a local social services agency that has been working to reduce poverty and homelessness since the 1980s.

The tiny-homes community approach is "a great model and we at the Mustard Seed would like to explore that in non-veterans communities as well," says Stephen Wile, Mustard Seed CEO.

There will, however, be resistance, he says.

"I think part of it is there is the 'ghetto' mindset. ... [that] we're going to create a ghetto here. But what people don't understand is that those of us who are working in social services as non-profits, our intention is not to create a worse place for people to live, our intention is to produce a better place for people to live so that they can move to that place of wellness. If we are creating slums, then we are not solving people's problems," Mr. Wile says.

"Really, what you have to do is you have to deal with people's fears."

When you address those issues through dialogue with the community, you can overcome the fear, he says.

Mr. Howard of Homes for Heroes agrees. "Involving the community is a great thing and I think that you might find that when you do that, then you get better support, but when you blindside people and try to jam it down their throat ... I think that's when people get defensive."

With the right approach, he says the tiny-homes model could work to provide affordable housing in communities of varying sizes. "I think it's a brilliant idea," he says.

In Calgary, there's need for 15,000 affordable homes. About 90 per cent of those who need them are the working poor, people on minimum wage who want a stable home environment, he says. "We need to give a little more respect for that."

Tiny homes would also be a boon you younger people.

"Our younger generation ... they have no interest in purchasing a home. They feel that it is gone for them, they don't have that opportunity any more.

Houses [have become] too expensive," Mr. Howard says.

"There is so much more opportunity. I think that if you developed a community of tiny homes for any demographic, you could have the ability to sell these for anywhere from $100,000 to $150,000. ... People would be able to afford a mortgage for that. People in Calgary have cars that are worth twice that."

Associated Graphic

The veterans who are living in the tiny-homes project will have on-site access to a range of social services including counselling, medical care and help finding employment.


The Homes for Heroes project is a tiny-home community for homeless veterans in the Calgary neighbourhood of Forest Lawn. Each of the 15 homes will measure just less than 300 square feet.


All-electric Chevy Bolt drives best in small doses
New model has a range of up to 417 km when fully charged, but the impact of several factors - including climate controls and driving over hills - on its battery efficiency make it a poor choice for long-distance driving
Special to The Globe and Mail
Friday, October 18, 2019 – Print Edition, Page D8

PORTLAND, ORE. -- General Motors is very proud of the 2020 Chevrolet Bolt. This latest model has an extra 34 kilometres of range in its already large battery, which means the all-electric car claims to drive up to 417 km on a full charge.

That's basically the only difference for this coming year, aside from the various on-board cameras being upgraded to high-definition and a couple of new paint colours. The front grille now has a ripple effect to it, which aside from the new paint is the only way to tell that it's not a 2019.

That's okay - for battery-electric vehicles (BEVs) these days, it's all about the driving range and the cost. Nothing else really matters. And for 2020, the Bolt has the same $44,800 starting MSRP as of last year (plus $1,895 freight and A/C, less the $5,000 federal rebate and additional rebates in Quebec and British Columbia). If you do find a 2019 on a dealer lot, though, you'll get a better financing deal for it.

My previous experience in the 2019 Bolt was not encouraging, because I was driving in the coldest days of winter in Toronto, when the temperature was close to -20 C. That makes a huge difference to the efficiency of both the batteries and the charging stations.

The Bolt travelled far less distance than claimed for its optimal range and it took far longer to charge when it was plugged i nto a fast charger.

This month, here in the U.S.

Northwest, the temperature reached a cool but pleasant 12 C, and GM suggested a drive route from Tacoma, Wash., to Portland, Ore., that clocked in at 390 km. This should be possible with a single charge, theoretically, but the planners were taking no chances and directed the route past a fastcharging station along the way, just in case. "It's cooler today, so that's not in our favour," the GM guy said. Apparently, the best temperature for a BEV's battery is around 21 C. Tell that to the Canadian weather gods.

The battery on the 2020 is now a 66-kilowatt-hour unit, while the previous car used a 60-kWh battery. The engineers say they found a chemical way to store additional power in the same size cells, which now weigh slightly more, but take up no additional room.

When the new Bolt was fully charged, it showed a probable range on the driver's instrumentation of 373 km. That's the distance it would expect to travel under normal driving given the cooler weather. It also showed a maximum range of 440 km and a minimum range of 268 km. My time with the 2019 Bolt had shown that these estimations are quite accurate. The longer range is likely possible if I drive below the speed limit, feather the throttle and stick to the city, where there'll be plenty of regenerative braking in traffic. The shorter range is a worst-case scenario, ripping along like a madman on the open highway.

There are extra tricks for extending the range, too, aside from just careful driving. If the car's single-speed transmission is placed in L (low) instead of D, it will operate like a golf cart with "one-pedal operation." Press the throttle and it goes faster, take the pressure off the throttle and it slows rapidly, almost as though the brakes are applied. In fact, the brake lights will go on to warn drivers behind. This takes the energy created from the slowing down and "regenerates" it into stored power in the battery.

If you're not in L, you can also pull on a small finger-paddle on the left side of the steering wheel, which activates the motor's heavier braking and helps avoid using the brake pedal itself.

Most electric cars now allow this, and owners save a considerable amount on brake pads and discs as a result.

For the first hour, I drove as suggested with the transmission set to L, which allows additional regenerative braking. My right foot began to cramp up, so I set the cruise control for some relief, but otherwise drove at the pace of traffic, mostly on multilane highway. When I stopped for coffee after 110 km, my likely range showed as 211 km - a drop of 162 km. Clearly, I was driving like a madman, although I'd not noticed it. Clearly, also, I'd not make the final distance without a charge along the way.

The Bolt's display screen shows how much of your energy was used by just driving the car, compared with running the climate control and all the various accessories. There was frost on the ground and I'd had the seat heater on, and the heated steering wheel, and did not intend to be cold. Apparently, 15 per cent of my energy was used by the climate controls. I could have driven an extra 23 km if I'd switched them all off.

Resigned to recharging along the way, I drove in D instead and the road became a normal, slower highway. This time, when I stopped for lunch after an additional 127 km, I was down to a likely remaining range of 104 km.

The day had warmed up, so my climate controls only added an extra 6 km to my wasted range.

It's like this when you drive an electric car over any kind of distance - you're constantly doing math, or at least, the car's readout is doing the math and you're constantly monitoring it.

During lunch, the GM planners took the Bolt away for a quick boost at a nearby Level 2 charger, which added just 6 km to the likely range. This time, I put the car into Sport and cared not a jot for efficiency, passing Subarus and Priuses on the hilly highway to the fast charger. The car was more worried than me - it warned me to stop for a charge and then it told me "propulsion power is reduced." I was down to 5 per cent of battery power when I finally pulled in for the fast charge, after a total of 321 km.

How come I'd lost all this range? The Bolt's readout said I'd have found an extra 29 km if I'd not used any climate controls, and an extra 15 km if I'd not driven up so many hills, and an extra 13 km if the day had been a balmy 21 C, and an extra 24 km if I'd driven more responsibly. That comes out to 402 km.

It's probably best to think of that extra range as a gift, since much of it is out of the driver's control. However, if you work at it, you can likely get much of the range back, if not more. In practice, though, it probably doesn't matter - most people don't need to routinely drive a BEV such a distance, and if you do, it's probably not for you.

The Bolt now has the largest official distance of any compact BEV - a couple of kilometres longer than the Hyundai Kona, and at least 30 km longer than the Tesla Model 3 Standard Range Plus, the Kia Niro Electric and the Nissan Leaf Plus. Those other cars are all 2019s, though - don't expect the Bolt's lead to last for long.

Associated Graphic

There are some tricks to extend the range of the 2020 Chevrolet Bolt, such as placing the car's single-speed transmission in low.


The car's display screen shows how much of the car's energy is used just by driving, compared with running the climate controls and other accessories.

Greens focus on two islands for electoral breakthrough
May's party is looking to the two places where it has been embraced the most by voters: Vancouver Island and Prince Edward Island
Saturday, October 12, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A9

VICTORIA HALIFAX -- For the Green Party of Canada, two islands will hold the key to whether the party can make its hoped-for electoral breakthrough in the Oct. 21 federal election.

Green Party Leader Elizabeth May's party is running candidates in every region of the country, but her time in this campaign has focused on the seats where Greens have been embraced by voters: Vancouver Island and Prince Edward Island.

There are pockets, elsewhere, where the Greens could pick up seats, including the oasis of environmentally minded voters around Guelph, Ont. In Quebec, the Greens are running a separate campaign with its own resources.

Nationally, the Greens have elected just two members of Parliament, both of them from Vancouver Island. In this campaign, the party is funnelling its resources in particular into six B.C.

seats that cover the southern half of Vancouver Island, which includes Ms. May's Saanich-Gulf Islands riding.

The Green strategy, since the start of the campaign, has been to target seats where Greens have been elected federally or provincially, says national campaign manager Jonathan Dickie.

"As we have started to elect more MPs, MLAs and MPPs across the country, we have been able to show our elected representatives are doing a good job. ... It opens the door for voters," he said.

Since the previous federal election in 2015, the number of elected Greens in Canada has increased dramatically, with members now sitting in the legislatures of B.C., PEI, New Brunswick and Ontario. That growth brings additional organization and resources to the federal campaign, as the provincial parties lend their expertise to the national effort.

Southern Vancouver Island holds the greatest potential for the Greens. It's where Ms. May made history as Canada's first elected Green MP, and it is home to three provincially elected Greens who currently hold the balance of power in the B.C. Legislature.

Racelle Kooy, the Green candidate for Victoria, started knocking on doors in the spring; if the Greens can pick up another seat anywhere, this is a likely place.

The Greens came in second place here in 2015, fewer than 10 percentage points behind the NDP's Murray Rankin, who is not seeking re-election. (Jo-Ann Roberts, the candidate for the Greens in that race, is now running in Halifax.)

In Ms. Kooy's campaign office in downtown Victoria, custom murals on the walls brighten what is typically a utilitarian workspace. Stylized orcas in kelp beds dance along the wall, at Ms.

Kooy's request, as a reminder of the fight to save the region's endangered southern resident killer whales. "People can relate to them," she said.

The New Democrats stand to lose the most here if the Greens can pick up seats in B.C. and for the past week, the party has brought in additional resources to Vancouver Island. The popular NDP MP Nathan Cullen, who is not seeking re-election in his northern B.C. riding, was in Victoria on Tuesday, warning voters that progressive voters need to unite behind his party to stop a Conservative government.

The rivalry between the Greens and the NDP in this campaign has been intense. During a campaign stop in Victoria on Oct.

3, Ms. May accused the New Democratic Party Leader Jagmeet Singh of desperate and dishonourable attacks. "We haven't been gunning to hurt the NDP, but they seem to be training most of their fire on creating fake stories about us. I have great patience and I try to find a wellspring of compassion for all, but Mr.

Singh is straining my patience."

In pockets of Atlantic Canada, the Greens have been boosted by recent success at the provincial level and have replaced the NDP as the progressive choice for many voters. That's particularly true in Prince Edward Island, where the provincial party took more than 30 per cent of the popular vote in April and formed the Official Opposition for the first time.

That historic breakthrough, and the Greens' three new seats in the New Brunswick Legislature, has encouraged federal candidates around the region. Ms.

May has paid particular attention to increasing support here, visiting the region frequently and weighing in on local environmental issues.

"The most interesting thing that I've seen is how ready people are for a change," said Barry Randle, the Green candidate in Central Nova, where Ms. May has called for the end of effluent dumping by the Northern Pulp mill in Pictou, N.S. "They've seen this pendulum go back and forth, from red to blue, red to blue, and nothing ever changes. Nothing ever improves. But with the climate crisis, people are realizing the change has to come, and it has to come now."

He thinks one thing in the Greens' favour is the lack of an anyone-but-Stephen-Harper sentiment that swept across Atlantic Canada in 2015. That means voters may feel freer to follow their conscience, instead of voting to keep someone else from winning, he suggested.

"This time, we can actually vote for what we want, instead of what we don't want," Mr. Randle said.

But while it's projected the Greens could draw more votes in the Maritimes than they ever have, one political observer cautioned against reading too much into recent Green Party success at the provincial level.

"I still think it's going to be a real struggle for them. I don't see them picking up any seats in Atlantic Canada," said Peter McKenna, a professor of political science at the University of Prince Edward Island in Charlottetown.

The Greens have been able to attract some quality candidates on the island, including former provincial party president Anna Keenan - but she's running in Malpeque, PEI, a riding that has been Wayne Easter's Liberal stronghold since 1993. Her work on electoral reform raised her profile provincially, and she could make things interesting, however.

Much of the Green's success in PEI has to do with provincial party Leader Peter Bevan-Baker, a family dentist who has styled himself as an unconventional politician doing a new style of politics. But while trying to persuade islanders his party is PEI's next government-in-waiting, he's avoided wading too deeply into divisive environmental issues that are such a big part of the national party's brand, Prof.

McKenna said.

"In Prince Edward Island, politics is really personal, and Peter Bevan-Baker is the driving force behind the party here. He's hugely popular. But this hasn't really crossed over into federal politics," Prof. McKenna said.

"Islanders are also very pragmatic. They vote with an eye toward who's going to form government, and they want to ensure the transfer of resources and political goodies continues."

Mike Schreiner, the Leader of the Ontario Green Party and the MPP for Guelph, is the sole Green in the Ontario Legislature, and he has parachuted into Green campaigns in B.C., New Brunswick, PEI and, most recently, in Manitoba. He says Ms. May's Guelph rally early in the campaign drew an over-capacity crowd.

"You are seeing a lot of enthusiasm," he said.

"That level of ground game doesn't exist in all ridings but in the Greens' top 20, 30 ridings, the organization is more robust than it has been [in past campaigns]."

He said the party doesn't have the resources to mount a solid campaign in every region, so it has to be strategic. Vancouver Island, the East Coast and his pocket of green-minded voters in Southern Ontario are the most promising.

"We only have so much capacity."

Associated Graphic

Green Party Leader Elizabeth May makes a policy announcement at the campaign office of Green candidate Racelle Kooy in Victoria on Thursday - a region where the battle with the NDP is most fierce.


Buck Lake's annual Fall Supper is peppered with election talk
Every year, a small Alberta community celebrates the season with an event that is a cross between a fundraiser and communal harvest dinner. Although the area is predominantly Conservative, some residents have reservations about Scheer's leadership
Monday, October 14, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A6

Don Snethun is holding an orange Black & Decker drill. He inserts a red device that looks like a branding iron into the drill's chuck, where drill bits usually nest. The thin apparatus is half-a-metre long.

"It is a paint mixer," he says. That, and a homemade potato masher. "Beats the hell out of doing it with the stick."

Mr. Snethun had 50 pounds of tubers to mash for Buck Lake's annual Fall Supper, a cross between a community fundraiser and communal harvest dinner.

Fall Suppers - or Fowl Suppers, depending on your generation and geography - are the rural equivalent of urban block parties. Fall Suppers reflect decades of tradition, cultural heritage and community composition. The Alberta town's Fall Supper in late September looks and feels much like it did decades ago, save for creative culinary devices.

Buck Lake is about 150 kilometres southwest of Edmonton. Statistics Canada counted 51 residents in the 2016 census, but the official number is low given the seasonal lake residents and surrounding rural residents. The area, like much of Alberta, is thick with people supporting the Conservative Party of Canada. Here, folks blame Justin Trudeau, who leads the Liberals, for crushing the oil patch. For ignoring them. For blowing climate change out of proportion. For illegal immigration.

But the Conservatives are not without fault with this crowd. Because the Tories ignore them, believing they're a sure thing. Because some of their policies are too far to the right. Because there's just something about Andrew Scheer that doesn't feel right.

Andrea MacKay-Grace helped organize Buck Lake's Fall Supper. Mr. Trudeau, she says, has to go.

"I have no respect for this man at all," she says. "Our Prime Minister is a joke."

Buck Lake is in the riding of Edmonton-Wetaskiwin, and energy is a key part of its economy. Ms. MacKay-Grace will support the Conservative candidate, despite her reservations about Mr.


"I'm just not sure on this guy," she says. But she can't pinpoint what bothers her about him. "There's just something. I'm not sure. But he's gotta get pretty boy outta there."

The Buck Lake Ag Society puts on the local Fall Supper in the community hall. A handful of women are buzzing around the hall's cramped kitchen. Don Snethun and Curtis Begg are the only men helping out at crunch time.

The kitchen's island hits the middle of Mr. Snethun's thighs. The potato pots are tall, similar to the ones used to boil lobsters in cartoons, and top out at his lower belly, four buttons down from his collar. He puts the makeshift masher in the first pot and revs up the drill. The zear-zear-zear spinning sound slows as he bores his way to the bottom of the pot and accelerates as he lifts the tool upward through the smoother stuff.

"Curtis," Mr. Snethun says, "can you get me some milk out of the fridge? The homo milk." Mr. Begg, who has been promoted to sous chef from dishwasher, adds the milk to the mixture.

"Jocelyn, do you want potato water?" Mr. Snethun asks. Jocelyn Gomolchuk is in charge of the gravy. Of course she needs potato water.

Carrie Gohrbandt delivers pitchers of potato water to her fellow volunteer at the stove. The water looks like dirty lemonade, with steam rising from the pitchers. Ms. Gomolchuk stirs her gravy for more than half an hour as the human conveyor belt of ingredients terminates at her station.

"If we run out of gravy, you know that's a catastrophe," Ms. Gohrbandt says. "People love gravy."

Charity Malka is also lending a hand in the kitchen. She moved to Buck Lake from Drayton Valley, about 50 kilometres away, six years ago. She is a Fall Supper rookie, and enjoying the camaraderie.

"It is that closeness. It's everybody being together," she says. "Our social lives are taking everybody in different directions and nobody knows what community is any more."

Fall Suppers, like potato mashers, evolve. Years ago, they were wellplanned potlucks. Someone would bring pies, others would take care of the turkey, locals would clean out their gardens for fresh veggies. Health inspectors, however, now value food safety more than tradition, which means Fall Suppers now require proper kitchens.

Grandmothers leave their famous butter tarts at home now. In Buck Lake, the pumpkin pies and trays of dainties are from Costco.

Buck Lake's local butcher will later arrive with a 60-pound roast he cooked in a smoker oven all day. There are chicken breasts, coleslaw, pickled beets, peas, carrots. The mashed potatoes are creamy.

When it's all done, the community donates the leftovers to a soup kitchen, Drayton Valley's Warming Hearts.

This year, patrons pay $18, with the cash going toward keeping the hall in good repair. Town halls are crucial in small towns. They play host to weddings, funerals, family reunions and dances. Students sing carols in the rough vicinity of the proper key at Christmas pageants.

A town hall's floors give away its vintage: Wood for old-timey venues, tiles for additions or new halls and fancy new ones come with extravagances such as floor markings for basketball keys and volleyball courts. Attendees were encouraged to trade a loonie for a membership in the Buck Lake Ag Society. The more members the organization has, the more government grants it receives.

About 90 people attend this supper, sharing the communal meal at 20 long, rectangular tables covered in seasonal tablecloths. There are door prizes and a donation bucket for a family dealing with a health crisis.

Folks volunteering at Buck Lake's supper believe Mr. Trudeau let down the oil patch. And that makes it difficult for Jaime McKay, a swing voter, to decide whom to support.

He says, while washing dishes in the kitchen, that he is increasingly upset with Mr. Trudeau. "Scheer is the only other viable alternative."

But the Conservatives have yet to secure his vote. Mr. McKay says he is not confident that the Conservative Leader has the backbone to stand up to Quebec's opposition to the oil sands and pipelines, and Mr. Scheer is too right wing for his tastes.

"In Canada, usually when it comes to the federal election, you've gotta take the best of the worst."

Dwayne Patten runs the bar at Buck Lake's Fall Supper and earlier this year drove his truck and camper to Ottawa, as part of the yellow-vest movement.

The Liberals, he believes, are damaging the country.

"We need to get things straightened out in Canada and if we don't, we're headed down a pretty sad road," he says. "We just can't take four more years of it."

Mr. Trudeau, as Prime Minister, purchased the Trans Mountain pipeline so the Liberals could make sure it never went ahead, according to Mr. Patten. George Soros is among foreigners funding the anti-pipeline campaigns, he says.

Conservatives, however, best not take folks like him for granted.

The Buck Lake area is short on campaign signs, and the Conservatives, Mr.Patten says, invest little time and money campaigning around here.

"Maybe it is a little pompous on the Conservative side of things," he says.

The clock soon hits 6. The buffet tables are covered with salads and crockpots.

"Take the lids off," Mr. Snethun says.

"It is time to rock 'n' roll."

Associated Graphic

CHARITY MALKA In charge of making potatoes and vegetables

CARRIE GOHRBANDT In charge of making Tang


DON SNETHUN In charge of mashing the potatoes with his power potato masher

JAMIE McKAY In charge of dishwashing

HARVEY TUCKER Butcher in charge of cooking and cutting the roast beef

JOCELYN GOMOLCHUK In charge of making gravy

Ukraine's President says no blackmail in Trump call
But Zelensky says it's up to Congress, courts to determine whether U.S. President broke any laws
Friday, October 11, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A1

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky's attempt to put questions about his phone call with U.S. President Donald Trump behind him will go down as one of the most ambitious efforts in the long history of managing political messages.

Mr. Zelensky's team dubbed it a "press marathon," and for more than 14 hours on Thursday, the rookie Ukrainian leader - who previously had a reputation for avoiding media scrutiny - sparred with a changing cast of journalists from Ukraine and around the world, meeting them 10 at a time around a wooden table on the second floor of a trendy food market near the centre of Kyiv. More than 300 journalists were scheduled to get time with Mr. Zelensky during the allday event.

It was a performance that recalled the hours-long annual news conferences given by Russian President Vladimir Putin - albeit in much more intimate surroundings (Mr. Zelensky had hamburgers and pizza delivered to those journalists lucky enough to be given a lunchtime slot). The Ukrainian leader tried to find the disappearing middle ground between the Democrat and Republican narratives about his July 25 phone call with Mr. Trump, which has become the subject of impeachment hearings in Washington.

Mr. Zelensky said on Thursday that he had felt no pressure and "no blackmail" during his conversation with Mr. Trump - an answer that Mr. Trump immediately posted on his Twitter account, claiming it exonerated him. "This should immediately end the talk of impeachment!" Mr.

Trump wrote.

But Mr. Zelensky also said that it would be up to the U.S. judicial and legislative systems to determine whether Mr.

Trump had violated any U.S. laws during the call.

"If I, as President of Ukraine, comment on [the legality of] Mr. Trump's conversation, then this is interference, first in your legislative system, and it will be interference with your future elections," Mr. Zelensky said in a response to a question from an American reporter. A native Russianspeaker, he spoke predominantly in Ukrainian, although at times he attempted to answer questions from international reporters in his rapidly improving English.

U.S. Democrats have seized on a rough transcript of the call - which saw Mr.Trump reply to a request for more U.S.

military assistance for Ukraine with a request for Mr. Zelensky to do him "a favour" and investigate a company that employed Hunter Biden, the son of former U.S. vice-president Joe Biden - as evidence that Mr. Trump had put pressure on a foreign leader to dig up dirt on a domestic political rival. Joe Biden is a leading contender for the Democratic nomination in the 2020 presidential election.

Mr. Zelensky - tieless in a dark grey suit - said he would be willing to open a "joint investigation" into Burisma, the Ukrainian energy company that in 2014 hired Hunter Biden onto its board of directors.

He said he'd also support an investigation of alleged Ukrainian interference in favour of Hillary Clinton, Mr. Trump's opponent in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

But he avoided saying when those investigations might happen, or how they'd be carried out.

He tried to back away from a comment attributed to him in the White House transcript of the call, in which Mr. Zelensky is quoted saying that Ukraine's new prosecutor-general would be "100 per cent my guy" and would look into the Burisma case. Mr. Zelensky, who says he spoke in Ukrainian during the call, said the White House transcript inaccurately reflected his statement that the new prosecutor would be "a 100-per-cent honest man."

Multiple investigations have been opened in Ukraine into Burisma - a company controlled by Mykola Zlochevsky, an oligarch close to former president Viktor Yanukovych - over the past five years, only to be closed without charges each time.

None of the previous investigations apply to the period when Hunter Biden was serving on Burisma's board.

Mr. Zelensky said he didn't know at the time of the call that Mr. Trump had frozen more than US$391-million in U.S. military aid to Ukraine for several weeks this summer - a period during which the call took place - a move interpreted by Democrats as upping the pressure on Kyiv to investigate the Bidens. "I had no idea the military aid was held up. When I did find out, I raised it with [U.S. Vice-President Mike] Pence at a meeting in Warsaw," Mr. Zelensky said on Thursday. "After the meeting, America unblocked it."

Mr. Zelensky and Mr. Pence met in the Polish capital on Sept. 1. All but US$30million of the U.S. aid was released in midSeptember.

After the record-setting media day - during which Mr. Zelensky took only 10minute breaks between sessions with journalists - the Ukrainian President can now claim to have answered all the questions the world's media could throw at him (albeit in a format that ensured he'd be asked the same questions repeatedly, allowing him to give the same answers again and again). But the impeachment hearings mean that Ukraine will remain a central player in the U.S.

drama through the 2020 presidential election and beyond.

At one point, the 41-yearold former comedian appeared to accuse reporters of trying to trick him into an answer that would make headlines in the U.S. "I understand you and what you want - I clearly understand, directly. And you have to know that I understand, so I will not change any answers," he told a reporter from BuzzFeed News.

The Ukrainian reporters present were more focused on domestic issues, including Mr. Zelensky's ties to oligarch Ihor Kolomoisky, who owns the TV channel that helped propel Mr. Zelensky to countrywide fame ahead of his May election win with a show called Servant of the People, on which he played a fictional President of Ukraine.

While Mr. Zelensky acknowledged regular contacts with the oligarch - Mr. Kolomoisky's former lawyer is Mr. Zelensky's chief of staff - he said that Mr. Kolomoisky knew that Mr. Zelensky would always put the national interests first.

Another recurring topic was Mr. Zelensky's effort to pursue a peace deal with the Russian-backed separatists who control the Donbas region of southeastern Ukraine. While his plan to make peace with the Kremlin has led to accusations of "capitulation" from his predecessor Petro Poroshenko, Mr. Zelensky said he had been elected - defeating Mr. Poroshenko by a wide margin - with a mandate to end a war that has taken more than 13,000 lives since 2014. "I'm not ready to lose the lives of more people," he said.

But the deference Mr. Zelensky showed to Mr. Trump on the July 25 call raises questions about how he would fare in one-on-one negotiations with Mr. Putin, the former KGB agent who has ruled Russia for two decades.

Mr. Zelensky has been accused by Ukrainian analysts of letting Mr. Trump push him around on the call.

"I think when people talk on the phone, they change their tone of conversation, depending on the results they want to get," Mr. Zelensky said in response to a question from The Globe and Mail about whether he'd behave the same way in a conversation with Mr. Putin.

"I will choose the way that I speak to the President of the Russian Federation."

Associated Graphic

For more than 14 hours on Thursday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky sparred with a changing cast of journalists from around the world at a food market in Kyiv.


At one point during his whole-day press marathon in Kyiv on Thursday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky appeared to accuse reporters of trying to trick him into giving an answer that would make headlines in the United States.


Bus Fuller changed the way Canadians dine out
Restaurateur invented the now commonplace premium-casual chain dining concept
Special to The Globe and Mail
Wednesday, October 16, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A8

VANCOUVER -- 'They don't come here for the parsley."

The words of the late Leroy Earl (Bus) Fuller, a restaurant pioneer who changed the way Canadians dine out, hangs in the new IT room at Earls Kitchen + Bar headquarters in Vancouver.

Mr. Fuller, who founded the Earls and Joey restaurant chains and invented the now-widely imitated premium-casual chaindining concept, wasn't a pennypincher. In fact, his family says he was generous to a fault and could often be found slipping hundred-dollar bills to dishwashers.

But he understood the value of the almighty dollar, never forgot his humble origins and didn't believe that customers should have to pay for frilly garnishes they couldn't eat.

Mr. Fuller, a larger-than-life character with a grizzled beard, love of saucy limericks and lack of pretension, died last week at the age of 90 in West Vancouver, B.C.

"There are still no garnishes on the plates and that's a rule," said his son Stan Fuller, with whom he founded the first Earls, in Edmonton in 1982.

Today, there are 65 Earls and 28 Joey restaurants in Canada and the United States, plus 12 Local restaurants and one Beach House run by a family company controlled by Mr. Fuller's four sons: Stan, Jeff, Stewart and Clay.

The family also controls a majority stake in Cactus Club Café restaurants.

Earls, in particular, is well known for elevating the chaindining experience with premium wines, quality ingredients, approachable takes on popular world cuisines, celebrity chefs, slick operational systems and comely dining rooms.

But in 1982, when the first Earls opened with a simple menu of 16 burgers - all made fresh to order (which was rare), craft beers and an exotic outdoor patio, Western Canada was in the midst of a recession. It was an inexpensive, laid-back restaurant where people could go out for a nice meal at prices they could afford.

He always believed the customer came first.

Leroy Earl Fuller was born on Dec. 20, 1928, in Cincinnati, Ohio.

His father, Cecil Earl Fuller, was a hard-rock miner. When he was young, the family lived transiently, moving from camp to camp all over the United States. The younger Fuller got the nickname Bus from his childhood nickname, Buster.

"He came from nothing," Clay Fuller said. "There is a picture from the time they lived in Kentucky that makes The Beverly Hillbillies look like rock stars."

The family settled in Sunburst, Mont., where Mr. Fuller graduated from high school and met his future wife, Marilyn.

They married just as he was about to head overseas to fight in the Korean War. He was actually marching with his troops toward the transport boat, when he stepped out of line and sneaked back to Montana to tie the knot.

"He spent a couple of days in the can for going AWOL, but I guess it gave him peace of mind," Clay Fuller said.

Mr. Fuller's tour of duty was abruptly cut short. About two months after he landed, his unit was hit by mortar fire and a piece of shrapnel ripped through his hand. His life was likely saved by a copper plate on the cover of a military-issue Gideon Bible stuffed in his chest pocket. He spent two years in recovery, was awarded a Purple Heart and held on to that lucky Bible with its twisted plate, but never talked about the experience.

Back in Montana, Mr. Fuller returned to work as a machinist for the Texas Co. In 1954, his wife (who died in 1975) persuaded him to open a drive-in diner called the Green & White. They ran it together for two years, while he continued working at the Texaco refinery.

"That first year we did $32,000 and I made more money at that little restaurant than I did working at the Texas Company 40 hours a week, 51 weeks a year," Mr. Fuller told a reporter last year, when receiving the Rosanna Caira Lifetime Achievement Award from Foodservice and Hospitality magazine.

The Green & White was located on a stretch of state highway that had been slated for the development of a cloverleaf interchange.

The government agency offered to pay the dislocated business owners fairly, but almost everyone held out for a higher offer. Mr. Fuller was the only one who sold. In the end, the project was cancelled.

Mr. Fuller used that money to move the family to Edmonton, where he opened his first A&W franchise. He later bought out the A&W franchisee for Vancouver Island and Vancouver's Lower Mainland. In 1968, they moved to Vancouver and over the next few years, he grew the A&W chain to 47 locations in Alberta and British Columbia.

During that time, the A&W operators across Canada folded into a public company called Controlled Foods. "Unfortunately, some of the operators were more honest than others about their sales and profitability," Stan Fuller said. "He lost some equity, but was made president and that's how Fuller's [a pioneering all-day coffee concept] and Corkscrew [a steakhouse chain] was created."

Mr. Fuller's sons recall him being as tough as he was kindhearted.

"He was fiercely competitive and always wanted to win, whether it was crib, golf or business," Stewart Fuller said. But he played as hard as he worked.

"There was a rule in the office.

After it closed down on Friday, if he caught you with a pen, you were fired."

He valued family time above all else and loved partying with his boys. "Sometimes too much," Stan Fuller said. But he wouldn't stand for any nonsense, especially when they were young.

"You could be eating a crap sandwich or a soufflé - maybe both at the same time," according to Clay Fuller, who inherited his father's knack for colourful metaphors.

Clay recalls the time when, as a teenager, he disobeyed his father's orders to stay away from the snowmobile. Mr. Fuller had emptied the gas tank so Clay had to try to siphon some from the car with a garden hose and ended up swallowing a mouthful.

Mr. Fuller had no sympathy. Later that day, when Clay tried to bow out of a guitar lesson, he hollered: "You're going and if you don't, I'm going to follow you around with a lighter."

In 2008, Mr. Fuller turned control of the company over to all four sons. He remained chairman, kept an office at the Earls headquarters in downtown Vancouver and often weighed in on important business decisions - sometimes sticking his nose in if he felt the customers were being wronged. A week before he died, he called his boys over to one Vancouver restaurant location, demanding to know why the staff were using the prime parking spots.

"If he started rubbing his finger around the edge of his wine glass, you knew you were about to get a few words of wisdom," Jeff Fuller recalled.

Most of his time, however, was spent fishing, golfing and travelling. He remained spry and healthy up until the end, hiking and humping up rivers in Argentina and Patagonia.

Six weeks ago, Mr. Fuller was diagnosed with lung cancer. He had just begun treatment and developed a blood clot, which led to hypoxia. He died peacefully in his sleep in West Vancouver on Oct. 5. Mr. Fuller leaves his brother, Jack, four sons, 12 grandchildren and extended family. A private ceremony will be held for close friends and family.

Associated Graphic

Bus Fuller used the money he got from selling his first restaurant, the Green & White - which he ran with his wife, Marilyn - to move his family to Edmonton from Montana. In Edmonton, he opened his first A&W franchise.


Automakers claim that hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles are the future, Doug Firby writes. But most of the world's supply of the element is made through a process that isn't environmentally friendly, and critics are arguing for greener refining techniques
Special to The Globe and Mail
Friday, October 11, 2019 – Print Edition, Page D1

Hydrogen is being touted by automakers as the clean-energy alternative to battery-electric vehicles. But to claim the clean-car crown, the technology has to overcome one major obstacle - the way most of the world's supply is made.

Sure, hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles emit no exhaust fumes - just heat and water vapour. But critics say the concern is with what happens before hydrogen gets into your car.

Hydrogen is one of the most abundant elements on Earth. Yet, it is almost always found as part of another compound, such as water, and must be separated from those compounds before it can power your vehicle.

The most common refining process is natural gas reforming. In this process, also known as steam methane reforming, natural gas is mixed with very hot steam. This produces carbon monoxide, which reacts with water to produce hydrogen.

Because it is a relatively cheap process, about 95 per cent of the hydrogen used in North America is made this way. Yet, it involves fossil fuels that release carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, and the product has been labelled "blue" hydrogen because it is less clean than the less common green hydrogen, which is produced with renewable energy, but not as bad as the dirtiest processes, which produce "grey" hydrogen.

"Blue hydrogen is the lowest-cost production pathway," said Bora Plumptre, senior analyst of federal policy at the Pembina Institute, a Calgary-based think tank that advocates clean-energy alternatives. "We really need to set policies for the greenest production possible."

Greener refining techniques are being tested. Electrolysis, for example, uses an electric current to split the water into hydrogen and oxygen. But critics say this process is only as clean as the source of electricity. It might be clean if the power comes from hydro-rich provinces, such as Quebec or British Columbia, but not so clean if the electricity comes from coal-fired plants, as in Alberta.

With such a massive environmental hurdle, it might be surprising to learn that many automotive industry executives are betting on hydrogen fuel cells. A 2017 survey of 1,000 senior auto executives conducted by KPMG found that most believe hydrogen fuel cells have a better long-term future than electric cars. Further, they agreed fuel cells represent "the real breakthrough" in efficient technology.

That sentiment has grown even stronger since then. In June, Wan Gang, a former Audi executive who is now a vice-chairman of China's national advisory body for policy making, told Bloomberg News that his country now wants to build a "hydrogen society," and aims to have one million hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles on the road within a decade.

Wan is called China's father of electric vehicles. He told Bloomberg the country has more than two million battery-electric vehicles (BEVs) on the road, including 421,000 electric buses.

In Japan, the energy ministry provides subsidies equal to more than $26,000 for the purchase of hydrogen powered vehicles. It wants to have 40,000 fuel-cell electric vehicles on the road by 2020, and 200,000 such vehicles within six years.

Toyota Motor Corp. and Hyundai Motor Co. are leading the race to bring fuel-cell vehicles to market. Toyota's Mirai is sold in California, but is only available in fleets in Canada. Hyundai's Nexo is available to anyone, but comes with a list price of $73,000 in Canada.

Other manufacturers with fuel-cell vehicles on the market include Mercedes Benz (F-Cell), Honda (Clarity) and Britainbased Riversimple (Rasa). More than a dozen concepts from other manufacturers are also in the works.

Fuel-cell cars such as the Nexo, which I sampled at a recent test drive of high-efficiency vehicles, combine the best of both internal combustion engine (ICE) and BEV technology. Unlike BEVs, hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles have a refuelling range similar to triedand-true gasoline-powered vehicles. They can also be refilled in minutes, rather than the hour or more it takes at the highest-capacity recharging stations.

Unfortunately, hydrogen-fuelcell stations only exist in B.C. and Quebec. During the Automotive Journalists Association of Canada EcoRun, held this summer in Alberta, writers learned what that meant. With no hydrogen refuelling stations, the demonstration ended when the fuel ran out.

That is partly why electric car champion Elon Musk, chief executive officer of the battery-electric automaker Tesla Inc., has famously dismissed hydrogen "fool cells" as "mind-bogglingly stupid."

Don Romano, president of Hyundai Canada, doesn't think so.

Fuel retailers, he said, are reluctant to invest in a massive network of hydrogen refuelling stations across Canada until they see which technology will win the hearts of consumers. Right now, just three cities have refuelling stations: Trois-Rivières, Que.

(one), Montreal (one) and Vancouver (two, with three more on the way).

Craig Scott, director of Toyota's advanced technologies group in Los Angeles, disputes hydrogen's dirty image. He says hydrogen produced through steam methane reforming is still 50 per cent cleaner than gasoline produced for ICEs in the United States on a "wells-to-wheels" basis.

"Hydrogen is definitely not a dirty fuel," he said.

Pembina's Plumptre agrees, saying that even blue hydrogen achieves lower carbon dioxide emissions than gasoline used in ICEs: "A tonne reduced is a tonne reduced."

And even the province most identified with fossil fuels - Alberta - could produce hydrogen with a lower carbon footprint using the latest natural gas technology. In fact, the Alberta ZeroEmissions Truck Electrification Collaboration (AZETEC) pilot project has two heavy-duty Ballard hydrogen fuel-cell-powered trucks travelling between Edmonton and Calgary.

Nicolas Pocard, director of marketing at Ballard Power Systems Inc. in Burnaby, B.C., says there are affordable ways to create green hydrogen. In Europe, for example, companies buy excess electricity produced by wind farms during off-peak hours at next to no cost to create hydrogen through electrolysis. It can be produced, compressed and delivered to the customer at costparity with diesel fuel, he said.

Canada could do the same, especially B.C. and Quebec, which generate excess power from hydroelectric facilities at off-peak hours, Pocard said. Hyundai's Romano agrees. Adding that Ontario Hydro sells excess hydroelectric power to U.S. markets at "25 cents on the dollar," he said, "We could convert what we're overproducing into hydrogen" at very low prices.

Even cleaner processes are possible. In late September, researchers from the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology unveiled a water-splitting technology they claim is 98.7-per-cent efficient and could reduce the cost of the equipment to produce hydrogen by half.

Plumptre says the success of the electrolysis method "will be driven by the electricity price."

In a heavy industry, Romano says, hydrogen fuel cells are "the only solution" because the heavier the load, the less viable BEVs become. Large trucks, he said, are unable to accommodate "giant batteries on wheels."

Pocard calls heavy-duty fuelcell vehicles "the low-hanging fruit." A fleet of buses in one city, for example, can be refuelled daily with just one hydrogen station.

As the price of technology goes down and refuelling stations are added, he predicts light-duty vehicles will also become viable.

BEV or fuel cell? Romano believes there is room for both.

"The technology that's going to lose is the internal combustion engine," he said. "I am absolutely positive hydrogen systems are a part of our future."

Adds Plumptre: "The role of hydrogen seems pretty clear to me. It's going to have a huge role."

Associated Graphic

Hyundai is leading the race to bring to the market fuel-cell vehicles, such as the Nexo, above, which is priced at $73,000 in Canada.


What gun violence looks like to a trauma surgeon
Toronto doctor Dave Paskar says this major federal-election issue must be looked at 'through the lens of public health'
Friday, October 18, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A6

Dave Paskar has treated more victims of gun violence than he can remember. For the past 4½ years, he has been a trauma surgeon at St. Michael's Hospital in downtown Toronto, one of the city's two major adult emergency centres. The hospital received 55 gunshot-related traumas in 2018; in the first eight months of 2019, it received 43.

Guns have become a hot-button topic during the campaign for the Oct. 21 federal election, and doctors are speaking about the damage they cause, calling it a public-health crisis.

Dr. Paskar spoke to The Globe and Mail about his experience.

What do you do when a shooting victim is coming in?

The first priority is to get as much information as possible. If they're arriving without vital signs, we need to make some very quick decisions about whether we're going to stop treatment, or if we're going to do something extreme, like open the chest and try to resuscitate them surgically in the emergency department. The last thing we want to do is open the chest of someone who's unsalvageable. It's violent, expensive to the system and potentially psychologically traumatic to people in the room.

Are there cases that have stuck with you?

All surgeons have this bank of patients in the depths of our psyche, where the outcomes weren't as good as what you'd hoped. Option A made sense at the time, and no one doubts what you did, but it was the wrong choice and the patient didn't do well. They haunt us for the rest of our careers.

Am I going to remember the many, many families of 85-yearolds, and telling them, "It's not going so well"?

It's not the same.

What is it like to speak with the victims' families?

The really tough ones are obviously if they're dead, or if you think the outcome is going to be very, very bad. People want to have hope, whether it's religious hope, or a belief that modern medicine has come so far that we can fix anything. When I tell them we can't, it's really tough.

When they're dead, and there's nothing you can do to change that, effectively your job is to take away this family's hope.

How do they react?

I have experienced all types of responses. From extreme sadness, crying, wailing, screaming to the point where I need to get out of there because they're so angry that they may even assault me because of what I represent.

I've heard family members scream and yell so loud ... you didn't think a human could scream that loud. It's horrible.

Absolutely horrible.

I've had parents be so mellow and matter-of-fact. "Yes, doctor."

"I understand, doctor." "Thank you, doctor."

I've had parents joke around after I told them. I want to stress: This is the most abnormal thing in the human experience, the death of your child. There's no normal way to respond to that.

I've had parents just be deeply grateful for us trying.

I had a mother who didn't stop hugging me for 20 minutes.

Getting shot is a very particular type of trauma, right? It's not like a car crash.

In the past, we've been under-attuned to the mental, spiritual side of postinjury life. It's not just broken bones, it's broken souls afterwards. We're only starting to focus a bit more on that in terms of providing aftercare. When I'm seeing patients in clinic followups, they come into the room, they're wearing their street clothes, they've gained some weight back. Your initial instinct is: "Awesome. Life saved." You get talking to them and you realize they're not doing so good.

They have [post-traumatic stress disorder]. They don't feel safe.

Outside their immediate family, they don't know who they can trust.

You saved that person's life, but there's still a lot more to help them with.

What about the psychological effect on you?

When we have a really bad trauma come in, we don't stop much during that time to be harmed.

But if the person dies, and we're all down, we're trying to be a little more attuned to that: "We did this and it wasn't the right move," or "This is what I was thinking about and obviously it didn't work because the person's dead," or "We did everything right and it was just an unsalvageable case." Young patients, in particular, are often very mentally, spiritually challenging for us.

Do these cases still affect you like they did in the beginning?

To some degree, I'm being affected more. A large part of it has to do with becoming a father. It makes you more sensitive. But I don't want anyone to think that's a bad thing. Being affected more, I think it's a good thing. For those of us who live and work in emergency environments, there's a fine line you have to walk in terms of being impacted just enough and being immune, not just to human suffering, but also the visual, graphic nature of some of these things. You can't be so paralyzed by death, dying, injury, destruction, that you can't function, because then you can't do that job.

You have to be comfortable with it to some degree.

But if you become so comfortable with it that you can, in the next breath, walk away from it and act like nothing happened, one of two things is happening: Either you're not human enough for that job, because there's so much humanity you need to do these jobs well, or you aren't taking care of yourself, because you're just pushing it away.

It has to still be real to you.

One problem in the gun debate is that shootings are easy to consider as statistics.

When someone dies, particularly a young person, there's an incredible void in that family's life, that neighbourhood. That person had a constructive life ahead of them where they could have contributed to society.

When [the pro-gun community] interacts with us, or you hear something about the self-righteous doctors who want to take away guns, what we hear is a little of, "Shut up, and fix the holes."

Shootings are a biological manifestation of a societal problem. It can't just be "Shut up and fix the holes."

There are more victims than just the person who was shot.

When I deliver bad news, it's almost like I'm finishing the bullet's job. When I go into the room and say, "Your son is dead," you see that wave of grief and anguish spread across the family ... they're not dead until the family knows they're dead.

It's not just one human body shutting down. It's a complex web.

Do you have thoughts on what should be done about gun violence?

This all has to be seen through the lens of public health. It's all about how we, living as a group, can increase our group's healthiness and happiness so that we can live longer, healthier, happier lives.

I would argue that removing many of these guns from the equation will do that.

This interview has been edited and condensed.

Associated Graphic

Dave Paskar, a trauma surgeon at St. Michael's Hospital in Toronto, is seen in one of the medical centre's trauma rooms last month.


She earned a Tony Award and an Academy Award nomination, and often appeared in roles previously considered exclusive territory for white actors
Wednesday, October 9, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B23

NEW YORK -- Diahann Carroll, the Oscar-nominated actress and singer who won critical acclaim as the first black woman to star in a non-servant role in a TV series in Julia, has died. She was 84.

Ms. Carroll's daughter, Susan Kay, told the Associated Press her mother died Friday in Los Angeles of cancer.

During her long career, Ms. Carroll earned a Tony Award for the musical No Strings and an Academy Award nomination for best actress for Claudine.

But she was perhaps best known for her pioneering work on Julia. Ms. Carroll played Julia Baker, a nurse whose husband had been killed in Vietnam, in the groundbreaking situation comedy that aired from 1968 to 1971.

"Diahann Carroll walked this earth for 84 years and broke ground with every footstep. An icon. One of the all-time greats," director Ava DuVernay wrote on Twitter. "She blazed trails through dense forests and elegantly left diamonds along the path for the rest of us to follow. Extraordinary life. Thank you, Ms. Carroll."

Although she was not the first black woman to star in her own TV show (Ethel Waters played a maid in the 1950s series Beulah), she was the first to star as someone other than a servant.

NBC executives were wary about putting Julia on the network during the racial unrest of the 1960s, but it was an immediate hit.

It had its critics, though, including some who said Ms. Carroll's character, who is the mother of a young son, was not a realistic portrayal of a black American woman in the 1960s.

"They said it was a fantasy," Ms. Carroll recalled in 1998. "All of this was untrue. Much about the character of Julia I took from my own life, my family."

Not shy when it came to confronting racial barriers, Ms. Carroll won her Tony portraying a highfashion American model in Paris who has a love affair with a white American author in the 1962 Richard Rodgers musical No Strings. Critic Walter Kerr described her as "a girl with a sweet smile, brilliant dark eyes and a profile regal enough to belong on a coin."

She appeared often in plays previously considered exclusive territory for white actors: Same Time, Next Year, Agnes of God and Sunset Boulevard (as faded star Norma Desmond, the role played by Gloria Swanson in the 1950 film).

"I like to think that I opened doors for other women, although that wasn't my original intention," she said in 2002.

Her film career was sporadic. She began with a secondary role in Carmen Jones in 1954 and five years later appeared in Porgy and Bess, although her singing voice was dubbed because it wasn't considered strong enough for the Gershwin opera. Her other films included Goodbye Again, Hurry Sundown, Paris Blues and The Split.

The 1974 film Claudine provided her most memorable role. She played a hard-bitten single mother of six who finds romance in Harlem with a garbage man played by James Earl Jones. Ms. Carroll says she got the role after the intended lead actress, Diana Sands, became sick and insisted her friend take the role (Ms.

Sands died in 1973). But Ms. Carroll said those behind the movies did not see her in the role because of her work in Julia and made her audition without makeup.

"Give me a chance. Just give me the opportunity to show you that I understand," she recalled telling them in an interview with the National Visionary Leadership Project. "I'm an actress, singer, from New York City, from the streets of New York, and I pride myself on my work. ... I would like to be given the opportunity to stretch my wings."

She would end up being nominated for her Oscar, and she recalled the filming a magical experience.

"I had such a good time, I almost told them, 'You don't need to pay me,' " she added.

In the 1980s, she joined in the long-running primetime soap opera Dynasty as Dominique Deveraux, the glamorous half-sister of Blake Carrington; her physical battles with Alexis Carrington, played by Joan Collins, were among fan highlights. Another memorable role was Marion Gilbert, as the haughty mother of Whitley Gilbert (played by Jasmine Guy) on the TV series A Different World.

"Diahann Carroll you taught us so much. We are stronger, more beautiful and risk takers because of you. We will forever sing your praises and speak your name. Love Love Love, Debbie," wrote actress, dancer and director Debbie Allen, who was a producer on A Different World.

More recently, she had a number of guest shots and small roles in TV series, including playing the mother of Isaiah Washington's character, Dr. Preston Burke, on Grey's Anatomy and a stretch on the TV show White Collar as the widow June.

She also returned to her roots in nightclubs. In 2006, she made her first club appearance in New York in four decades, singing at Feinstein's at the Regency. Reviewing a return engagement in 2007, a New York Times critic wrote that she sang Both Sides Now with "the reflective tone of a woman who has survived many severe storms and remembers every lightning flash and thunderclap."

Carol Diann Johnson was born in New York and attended the High School for the Performing Arts. Her father was a subway conductor and her mother a homemaker. She recalls when she was around 3 or 4, her parents took her to an aunt in North Carolina and left her in the care of her aunt, without notice, for a year. She said it took a long time to forgive her parents, although she eventually did, and was there for them in their later years.

"It happened, it's over, it's done. A mature person finds a way to let go of that," she told OWN's Masterclass in an interview a few years ago. "They did a lot of wonderful things. They lived, gave me everything they possibly could, and they passed on."

She began her career as a model in a segregated industry; she got much of her work because of publications such as the black magazine Ebony. A prize from Arthur Godfrey's Talent Scouts TV show led to nightclub engagements.

In her 1998 memoirs, Diahann, Ms. Carroll traced her turbulent romantic life, which included liaisons with Harry Belafonte, Duke Ellington, Miles Davis, Sammy Davis Jr., Sidney Poitier and David Frost. She even became engaged to Mr. Frost, but the engagement was cancelled. An early marriage to nightclub owner Monte Kay resulted in Ms. Carroll's only child, Suzanne, as well as a divorce. She also divorced her second husband, retail executive Freddie Glusman, later marrying magazine editor Robert DeLeon, who died. Her most celebrated marriage was in 1987, to singer Vic Damone, and the two appeared together in nightclubs. But they separated in 1991 and divorced several years later.

After she was treated for breast cancer in 1998, she spoke out for more money for research and for free screening for women who couldn't afford mammograms. "We all look forward to the day that mastectomies, chemotherapy and radiation are considered barbaric," Ms. Carroll told a gathering in 2000.

Besides her daughter, she leaves grandchildren August and Sydney.

To submit an I Remember: Send us a memory of someone we have recently profiled on the Obituaries page.

Please include I Remember in the subject field

Associated Graphic

Diahann Carroll is seen playing Norma Desmond in the Canadian production of Sunset Boulevard in 1995. Ms. Carroll won a Tony for her role in the 1962 Richard Rodgers musical No Strings.


It's a mad, mad, mad, mad country
The United States has embarked on its own ruinous act of self-immolation, Lucy Ellmann writes
Saturday, October 12, 2019 – Print Edition, Page O8

Lucy Ellmann's new novel Ducks, Newburyport is nominated for the Booker Prize.

Are Americans the victims of some awful experiment? You almost expect the gigantic bald pate of a mad scientist to appear over the horizon one day, checking on his helpless specimens, each stuck in a hamster wheel of indefatigable optimism.

Chased by Fox News, flummoxed by fake facts and the phoniest guy we could find for President, we derive superficial comfort from Disney, opioids and pizza, Vietnam bombing-raid re-enactments, 500 billion YouTube gaming videos and self-congratulatory movies about Ruth Bader Ginsburg or the more prominent heroes of the Underground Railway - while awaiting our possible execution at church, or the mall, or the parking lot. Or at home.

When exactly did the U.S. give up on love of life? When we tire of killing each other, we slaughter some foreign peasants. No wonder extraterrestrials won't visit us any more. Sad! One recent idea for preventing school shootings is to train dogs to confront the shooter. The dog, unarmed and unprotected, is expected to make his or her way right up to a homicidal maniac mid-rampage and wrestle him (or her) to the ground. They are kamikaze K-9s, doomed from the start to be shot along with everybody else.

Or, here's a good suggestion: Arm teachers. As a result, children are now exposed to guns, gun threats and gun accidents at school. For extra protection, they can wear bulletproof backpacks.

Parents dutifully join campaigns for "gun sense," while their kids attend school-shooter drills to learn how to have nightmares and panic attacks, and run faster than a speeding bullet.

Never in all this is the possibility of simply banning all firearms mooted. Forget gun control, gun reform, gun sense. How about no guns at all. There is no unassailable right to own an AR-15. Most of the population really wouldn't miss guns a bit.

Sigmund Freud said the United States was a big mistake, presumably because it was a place where the id was allowed to run rampant, from Christopher Columbus's outrages on through all the white man's land-grabbing, massacres, slavery, greed and insensibility. In the mid-1800s, Fanny Trollope was appalled by Americans, finding them not only cheerless, misogynistic and inhospitable, but also vulgar. She couldn't believe how much they spat.

Some spit, others are spat out.

With the built-in inevitability of bullfights, the go-getters go get, the rest get got. Carlos Fuentes identified the anguish beneath all this American enterprise, the anguish of "doing, getting things done, making it."

Failure, pretty much guaranteed, goes unloved; it's not part of the story. But the fear of it drives people back into their uptight bubbles of "me." From the safety of solipsism, they participate in the collective daily orgasm of consumerism, which is the only "us" in U.S. Buying stuff seems like citizenship to us.

Even the niceness of many Americans is now suspect, because you never know if it's politeness born of terror: the kindness of calamity. Stockholm syndrome, multiplied in 330 million captives. You have to be generally pleasant to avoid being shot in the head. What if those sweet innocent chocolate-chip cookies we offer around all the time are the result of fear, not friendship?

"When terror descends," was how Edward Albee put it.

We have swapped our hardwon democratic rights for gossip, super PACs, lobbyists, peer pressure, bullying, the antique insanity of the Electoral College and gerrymandering, and all the modern chicanery of the electronic ballot box. But there's an upside! This powerlessness leaves more time for the "me" stuff.

Because, you know, there's all this pop music to approve or reject, and so many foreign slavelabour jeans and trainers to purchase, beggars to belittle, billionaires to envy and theories about the purifying effects of green tea to develop and propound. So much purifying and putrefying going on! It's really very absorbing. Never mind what the police are doing just down the street to black men.

For some, charity work has transmogrified into the moral duty to go to the gym. If only these people, so enamoured of exercise, would use their muscles for the greater good! Instead of feeling superior, they really could help out a bit more. Plant trees, lug food to the poor, scrape plastic debris out of rivers every day, fortify cities against flood. Forfeit their cars and run (if run they must) to work. March, too, on Washington, until Superman's nemesis is gone. But so much time and money are devoted to the self, there's none left for sorting out society.

Meanwhile, the ice man cometh. Guantanamo wasn't enough; the Republicans want more torture zones, and the right to incarcerate would-be immigrants for life. At the sight of the weeping children, we cry out, "This is not America, this is not who we are!" - but it so clearly is who we now are. Or what we became while we were drinking the requisite amount of sody-pop and gazing stupidly at our smartphones.

Nothing really matters beyond the self anymore. At the beck and call of low-paid jobs, social media and advertising, with the instincts of a cornered animal, people have no time to think beyond the bounds of family. Americans are trapped in trapped families.

And the hills are alive with the sound of gunfire.

And the American family is at the mercy of commerce, with family packs of aspirin and burger buns, family size gallons of milk and beer and OJ, family cars big enough to shove trucks off the road, family pets, family movies, family vacations, family men, family trees, family fun, family favourites, family hunting trips, family secrets, family vendettas and family murder-suicides.

You'd think that mothers might be awarded high status in such a family-oriented society, but women in the U.S. have no status at all.

That became obvious during the Brett Kavanaugh hearings. Kavanaugh good for America. Women not heard in America. Women not safe in America. Women just slaves in America. "Free to wait tables and shine shoes," as they sing in West Side Story.

Where is the compassion or sense of community? The latter word is unhelpfully close in sound to communism, which triggers more terror. Tellingly, the new nickname for protesters against climate change, those compassionate people hoping to preserve a future for life on Earth, is "watermelons": green on the outside, red inside. "Nah, we don't want life on Earth. Leave us alone."

It's no accident we chose the least safe pair of hands (be they small or bigly). Just as Brexit is the apotheosis of British self-hatred, the U.S. has embarked on its own ruinous act of self-immolation. The country blinked and scratched its head, Stan Laurel style, and decided to go for more corporate criminality, more exploitation, more terror, more indifference, more conformism, more inequity, more bread, more circus - and astonishing levels of sadness. The mad scientist seems to have instructed everybody to play dumb and await vivisection.

We obediently munch our apocalypse stew - dumbo gumbo - and every house blazes with a sinister blue light.

What riches there once were, what beauties! Raindrops on roses and crop tops on cuties. Now it's just tear gas and water hoses, and immigrant children tied up with strings: These are a few of our favourite things. Climb every mountain, ford every stream?

"Sure thing, ma'am, long as it's worth fracking."

Associated Graphic


Flurry of attacks but no knockouts in chaotic debate
Six major party leaders joust over climate change, abortion, Quebec's Bill 21 in campaign's sole official English-language debate
Tuesday, October 8, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A1

OTTAWA -- In a chaotic clash, the leaders of Canada's six main parties met for their only English-language debate on Monday night, a meeting marked by a flurry of attacks on a crowded stage where the leaders clamoured for air time.

Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau, as the incumbent, was the target of a series of ad-hominem criticisms, with Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer aggressively challenging him as a "phony" and a "fraud." Other party chiefs pushed Mr.

Trudeau on issues ranging from climate change to ethics.

While Mr. Scheer used his opening comments to attack Mr. Trudeau, the Liberal Leader used his time to talk about his platform, promising to invest directly in Canadians and give them "the tools to succeed." The debate featured the six main party leaders - Mr. Trudeau, Mr. Scheer, NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh, Green Leader Elizabeth May, Bloc Québécois Leader Yves-François Blanchet and People's Party Leader Maxime Bernier - leading to a sometimes disorderly exchange with the leaders talking over each other and jousting on issues such as abortion. The event was organized by the Leaders' Debates Commission and moderated by five journalists.

Held in Gatineau in advance of the Oct. 21 election, the debate began with Mr. Scheer on the attack, accusing Mr. Trudeau of "always wearing a mask." Mr. Scheer, who struggled in last week's French-language debate, appeared more comfortable in his first language.

Mr. Singh, who has fought to break through in the campaign, had a forceful performance, taking aim at both Mr. Scheer and Mr. Trudeau and earning applause from the audience who had been asked to refrain from clapping.

"You don't have to choose between Mr. Delay and Mr. Deny," Mr. Singh said in reference to the Liberal and Conservative Leaders' climate change policies.

Mr. Trudeau, tried to stay out of the fray, and at times even abstained from defending his record against attacks, for example on Indigenous issues.

The Liberal Leader was put on his heels by Mr. Scheer over his ethics record. Mr. Trudeau was twice found in breach of the federal ethics law, most recently over his government's attempt to interfere in the criminal prosecution of SNC-Lavalin. Mr. Scheer asked the Liberal Leader when he decided that "the rules don't apply" to him, pointing to the story, first reported by The Globe.

"They were false," Mr. Trudeau retorted about the allegations in the February Globe story that were corroborated by the Conflict of Interest and Ethics Commissioner Mario Dion and by former justice minister Jody Wilson-Raybould. Mr. Trudeau also maintained his involvement in the prosecution came down to a concern with protecting jobs.

As the two leaders talked over each other, Mr. Singh scolded them both.

"What we have here is Mr. Trudeau and Mr. Scheer arguing about who's worse for Canada," he said. "We've got to start presenting who's going to be best for Canada."

The Liberals and Conservatives, have been in a dead heat throughout the campaign according to Nanos Research polls.

The leaders had less than 20 minutes each during the two-hour debate to get their message across.

Mr. Trudeau struggled to defend his climate policy, promising to "meet and surpass" targets which government numbers show will fall short of the 2030 emissions targets. Mr. Scheer attacking the carbon tax and Ms.

May and Mr. Singh attacking him for buying a pipeline and keeping former prime minister Stephen Harper's emissions targets.

"You could have done so much more in the last four years. Please God, you don't get a majority this time around because you won't keep your promises," Ms. May said. "You bought a pipeline."

Mr. Trudeau tried to punch back late in the debate with an attack on Mr. Scheer's stand on abortion and past comments he's made about LGBTQ rights. Mr.

Trudeau said Canadians need to know that their prime minister will be "there to defend them."

"I am personally pro-life. It is okay in this country to have a difference of opinion," Mr. Scheer said, repeating his pledge not to reopen the issue if his party formed government.

Earning the first applause of the night, Mr. Singh said "a man has no position in a discussion on a woman's right to choose."

Ms. May said it's been interesting in the campaign hearing men argue about what women's rights should be, adding that, "We must be clear as all leaders, and you are not clear Andrew, that we will never allow a single inch of retreat from the hard earns rights of women in this country. Not one inch."

The federal leaders zeroed in on health care, climate change and internal trade when pressed on how they would work with the provinces and territories. Relations between the two levels of government have turned frosty since Ontario Premier Doug Ford was elected last year and the Premier has found himself in Mr.

Trudeau's crosshairs.

Mr. Scheer accused the Liberal Leader of being "oddly obsessed" with Ontario politics and suggested Mr. Trudeau run for the provincial Liberal party's leadership.

And he promised that "premiers won't have to take a Conservative government to court to fight things like the carbon tax."

But Mr. Trudeau said he was "fighting" with Mr. Ford and Alberta Premier Jason Kenney "on the defining issue of our time."

"We need a government in Ottawa that is going to fight them and fight for Canadians on climate change," he said.

The Conservatives have made affordability the defining issue of their campaign, but it received less attention during the debate.

Mr. Trudeau and Mr. Scheer duelled over their suite of promised tax cuts and tax credits and Mr. Singh accused both of them of acting in the interest of the "rich and powerful."

The leaders were dismissive of Mr. Bernier, who started his own political party after breaking ties with the Conservatives last year.

In particular, they piled on Mr.Bernier's plan to reduce immigration to Canada.

"You don't deserve a platform and I'm happy to challenge you on that because your ideas are hurtful to Canada," Mr. Singh said to Mr. Bernier.

Two other English-language debates were also planned during the election, but Mr. Trudeau refused to attend either one.

The latest national numbers from Nanos Research shows the Liberals at 34 per cent and the Conservatives at 33 per cent - a gap that falls within the margin of error. The NDP is at 15 per cent, followed by the Greens at 10 per cent, the Bloc Québécois at 5 per cent and the People's Party of Canada at 2 per cent.

The poll was sponsored by The Globe and Mail and CTV, with a total of 1,200 Canadians surveyed from Oct. 3 to Oct. 6. It has a margin of error of 2.8 percentage points, 19 times out of 20. Respondents were asked: "If a federal election were held today, could you please rank your top two current local voting preferences?" A report on the results, questions and methodology for this and all surveys can be found at

Associated Graphic

Green Party Leader Elizabeth May (from left), Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau, Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer, People's Party Leader Maxime Bernier, Bloc Québécois Leader Yves-François Blanchet and NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh, pose ahead of their Monday night debate in Gatineau.


Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau debates a point with Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer during Monday's federal leaders' debate.


Composing a safe space for survivors of sexual assault
Thursday, October 10, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A18

When you attend the symphony, an opera or a performance of any kind, there is a high probability that at least some of the women onstage have been victims of sexual assault. About one in three women will experience sexual violence in their lifetime. This most certainly does not exclude classical musicians.

If you attend a performance by the Artemis Musicians' Society in Vancouver, you will know that all of the people onstage have been victims of sexual assault. That is the point.

The group was formed this year by Katelin Coleman, a bassoon player, who wanted to create a safe space for musicians - not just women - who have survived sexual assault. But more than that, she wanted to make a statement.

By openly declaring the basis of the ensemble, she was aiming to erase the unjustified and unfair shame that comes with being a victim of sexual assault. She wanted to be part of something where the performers could wear their survival publicly and with pride.

"I had had the idea for a while since becoming quite disillusioned with the orchestral world, that I loved so much, through my own workplace sexual assault," said Coleman, 29. "I also noticed how isolating the experience was and how much stigma was attached to disclosing it."

In January, she wrote a lengthy Facebook post, explaining her idea and inviting people to join.

"It is with both great trepidation and pride that I make this announcement: I am looking to form a professional performing ensemble, entirely comprised of and run by musicians who are survivors of sexual assault," she wrote.

Several people came forward, some ultimately declining to join - at least for now - but the group held its first performance in the spring. And on Oct. 15, the four members of the Artemis Musicians' Society will perform their second show, On Loneliness.

Morgan Zentner, an oboist from the United States, was sexually assaulted when she was 12 at a local playground. Later, she was raped. There have been other traumatic experiences - some in a professional context - causing extreme, career-threatening distress.

"There's this stigma for women, especially in the classical community, where if we show that weakness, we tell our stories, we show people that we're not always okay, that we're not going to get hired again. They're not going to book us," Zentner, 36, said during a recent interview.

The four women had gathered in the common room of the Vancouver building where Joanna Lee, the group's violinist, lives.

Lee was assaulted when she was 10, has been sexually harassed repeatedly and experienced a traumatic sexual assault earlier in her musical training. She is now earning her doctorate at the University of British Columbia. When Coleman told her about the group and asked if she would join, Lee's response was "hell, yeah," they tell me.

"This is a safe space to produce art and music and to get close as humans and individuals and feminists," Lee, 34, said. "And wonderful women to work with."

The fourth member of this eclectic quartet is not a classical musician, but a spoken-word artist. Julie Hintz-Barrera, who performs as Chronfused, might seem like the outsider here, arriving not with a traditional musical case like the others, but for one rehearsal wearing a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles backpack and for another carrying a vintage suitcase she picked up for free from a second-hand store (they couldn't sell it because it smelled, she explained).

But she has fit in - and elevated the group with contributions such as her on-point poetry.

"Dear Little Julie of the past," she reads from her phone as the other three women move from a musical cacophony into a selection from Canadian composer Jordan Nobles's Museum Pieces. "I hope this message and the transdimensional machine that brought it to you are safe and unaltered," Hintz-Barrera continues.

The poem, Tender Transmissions, came out of henr work with her therapist: What would you say to your younger self, the little girl who was sexually assaulted by a family member?

"I had in my head for a long time that because I have this part of my past, because I'm carrying this weight with me, I'm not going to be able to achieve certain things," said Hintz-Barrera, 28.

At a second meeting, as the women take turns telling their stories, the others walk over or reach out to rub their arm or back, or hand them a tissue.

"That's one of the greatest parts about this. We can have these moments, like me breaking down in the middle of a meeting, and it's okay because that's the reason we're here," said Zentner, whose previous experience includes touring all over North America playing oboe in a folkmetal band. "You don't have to go into detail. You don't have to express everything, because it's hard. They just get it."

Coleman, who was born in Burnaby, B.C., was sexually assaulted by a relative when she was 5. It left her feeling ashamed and like she was different from other people.

Then, as an adult, she experienced an assault in a professional context and then subsequent isolation. It was a terrible time and she looked around for some sort of musical community for people like her. When she couldn't find one, she started her own.

"Someone has to lead. Someone has to be the one to say, 'Actually, that happened to me,' " Coleman said. She goes on to list some of the public indignities survivors face: "slut-shaming and victim-blaming and also just plain, old dehumanization. Because people don't see survivors as, like, their grandma. And their aunt. And their partners and their colleagues and their friends," she said, assembling her bassoon ahead of a group photo shoot.

"The common thing that these [perpetrators] always seem to have on us [is] they always seem to be the ones that other people support if you come out," she said, using an unprintable word for perpetrators. "And I thought the one thing they seem to have that we never seem to have is community. And why don't we have community? Because you tell people what's happened and they just go silent and giggle and have to [leave]. Or they're more preoccupied with how uncomfortable the subject makes them than they are with what's right."

She wanted to turn the tables.

To make being too embarrassed to talk about it the shameful response. Were that the case, she believes, sexual violence would not be so enabled by the culture. Victims would not suffer - in addition to the trauma - the loss of their livelihoods, friends and reputations.

"I felt, as a survivor speaking out and being assertive about it, that there was a definite script I was supposed to follow and it was supposed to be snivelling and damaged and, like, shaking and incapable," said Coleman, who whether speaking or playing her instrument, comes across as confident and passionate. She sees anger as a positive emotion that has helped propel her.

"There are much louder and more in-your-face ways of expressing your anger when you're going through or have gone through trauma," Zentner said.

"We can choose to be much uglier about things. But I feel like we as a group are keeping it a little bit more classy."

Artemis: On Loneliness is at Notional Space in Vancouver at 1523 East Pender on Oct. 15. The show is free; donations are optional.

Doors at 6:30; concert at 7.

49ers still unbeaten after one-sided victory over Rams
Monday, October 14, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B10


Francisco remained unbeaten with a dominant defensive performance against struggling Los Angeles. George Kittle had eight catches for 103 yards for the Niners (5-0), who held Los Angeles' once-unstoppable offence to 157 yards in coach Kyle Shanahan's first victory over Rams coach Sean McVay in a game in which both of these NFC West rivals were playing their starters. These longtime coaching colleagues' teams are going in opposite directions after this one-sided showdown at the Coliseum. San Francisco used its possession offence and a sturdy defence to stay alongside New England as the NFL's only unbeaten teams, while the Rams (3-3) are on their first three-game losing streak of McVay's 21/2-year tenure. Tevin Coleman rushed for an early touchdown for San Francisco, while Garoppolo was mostly effective despite two turnovers. The Niners didn't score a touchdown in the final 27 minutes, but they're off to their fourth 5-0 start in franchise history, and their first since 1990.

SEAHAWKS 32, BROWNS 28 CLEVELAND Chris Carson scored on a oneyard touchdown run with 3:30 left, Russell Wilson threw two TD passes and ran for one and Seattle rallied past mistake-prone Cleveland, improving to 3-0 on the road for the first time in 39 years. The Seahawks (5-1) gave up touchdowns on Cleveland's first three possessions before storming back. Wilson connected with Jaron Brown for two scores, and Seattle's cool quarterback scampered 16 yards for a TD. The Seahawks last won their first three road games in 1980, when they went 4-12.

SAINTS 13, JAGUARS 6 JACKSONVILLE, FLA . Teddy Bridgewater found Jared Cook for a four-yard touchdown early in the fourth quarter, and New Orleans held on to beat Jacksonville and improve to 4-0 without injured starter Drew Brees. Coming off a 300-yard, fourtouchdown performance against Tampa Bay, Bridgewater was less effective against the Jaguars (2-4). But he did enough for New Orleans' defence.

Gardner Minshew was sacked twice, hurried often and threw his first interception as a starter. The rookie sensation completed 14 of 29 passes for 163 yards and was held without a touchdown for the first time this season. Bridgewater was 24 of 36 passing for 240 yards for the Saints (5-1).

VIKINGS 38, EAGLES 20 MINNEAPOLIS Kirk Cousins threw to Stefon Diggs for three of his four touchdowns, racking up a season-high 333 passing yards as Minnesota ravaged Philadelphia's secondary. Diggs scored on plays in the first half that covered 51 and 62 yards, becoming the first player since Randy Moss in 2000 to post two touchdown receptions of 50-plus yards in one game for the Vikings (4-2).

His most important catch came late in the third quarter, a double toe tap in the back of the end zone from 11 yards out that pushed the lead to 11 points after Carson Wentz and the Eagles (3-3) had pulled within 24-20 with 17 straight points. Cousins went 22 for 29 with one sack and one interception on a deflected ball.

RAVENS 23, BENGALS 17 BALTIMORE Lamar Jackson ran for a careerhigh 152 yards and a touchdown, threw for 236 yards and guided Baltimore past hapless Cincinnati. Jackson carried 19 times, including three kneel-downs, and finished tantalizingly short of Michael Vick's singlegame record of 173 yards rushing by a quarterback. Jackson now has three career 100-yard rushing games, tied with Billy Kilmer for most by a quarterback in his first two seasons since 1950. The Bengals fell to 0-6. Baltimore (4-2) finished with 497 yards of offence, and the Ravens retained sole possession of first place in the AFC North.

PANTHERS 37, BUCCANEERS 26 LONDON Christian McCaffrey scored two touchdowns and Carolina turned five interceptions by Jameis Winston into 17 points as the Panthers beat Tampa Bay. After starting the season with two straight losses with hobbled Cam Newton at quarterback, the Panthers (4-2) have been on a roll with Kyle Allen at quarterback owing to McCaffrey's big plays and an opportunistic defence that had a franchise recordtying seven takeaways on the day. Both of those factors came up big on Carolina's first trip to London in front of a large contingent of Panthers fans for what was designated as a home game for the Bucs (2-4).

WASHINGTON 17, DOLPHINS 16 MIAMI GARDENS, FLA. Rookie Terry McLaurin caught two touchdown passes and Washington stopped Miami's two-point conversion attempt with six seconds left in a matchup between winless teams. Adrian Peterson more than doubled his season rushing total with 118 yards for Bill Callahan in his first game as interim coach.

Washington intercepted Josh Rosen twice and sacked him five times before he was benched at the start of the fourth quarter with the Dolphins trailing 17-3.

Washington (1-5) looked like a different team after firing coach Jay Gruden, but the calibre of the opposition had something to do with that. The Dolphins (0-5) remained winless under Brian Flores but helped their chances of securing the No. 1 draft pick in April.

CARDINALS 34, FALCONS 33 GLENDALE, ARIZ. Kyler Murray threw for 340 yards and three touchdowns and Arizona built a big lead, lost it and then rallied again for a win over Atlanta. Atlanta looked as though it would tie the game with 1:53 left after Matt Ryan hit Devonta Freeman on a 12-yard touchdown pass, but 44-year-old Matt Bryant missed left on the extra point, and the Cardinals ran out the clock from there. Murray is the first NFL quarterback to have at least 20 completions in his first six career games. The Cardinals (2-3-1) won at home for the first time since last Oct. 28. The Falcons (1-5) have lost four straight games.

JETS 24, COWBOYS 22 EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. Sam Darnold gave the Jets' struggling offence a huge boost by throwing two touchdown passes in his return from mononucleosis, and New York held on to beat Dallas for its first win of the season. The Jets led 21-9 in the fourth quarter, but Dak Prescott and the top-ranked Cowboys offence stormed back - and had a chance to tie in the closing moments. Prescott ran for a four-yard touchdown with 43 seconds left, making it a two-point game.

Going for the tie, Prescott dropped back and was quickly met by a blitzing Jamal Adams and his pass on the conversion try fell short of Jason Witten in the end zone.

The Cowboys (3-3) tried an onside kick, but Demaryius Thomas recovered for the Jets (1-4), who won for the first time under coach Adam Gase. It was the third straight loss for Dallas.

BRONCOS 16, TITANS 0 DENVER Denver's swarming defence sent Marcus Mariota to the bench and Tennessee to its fourth loss in five games. The Broncos (2-4) had seven sacks in a game for the first time since their 2015 Super Bowl season and they picked off three passes.

Chris Harris Jr. and Justin Simmons intercepted Mariota, who was sacked three times and was replaced by Ryan Tannehill after Simmons' interception led to a twoyard touchdown run by Phillip Lindsay that made it 13-0.

Associated Graphic

San Francisco 49er George Kittle evades Los Angeles Ram Troy Reeder on Sunday at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. San Francisco used its possession offence and strong defence to remain one of the NFL's only unbeaten teams.


Almighty Voice speaks up at Soulpepper
The Toronto theatre is featuring its first work by a First Nations playwright - an unconventional retelling of a Cree outlaw legend
Special to The Globe and Mail
Thursday, October 10, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A18

Last month, while Canada was hotly debating the motives behind its theatrical Prime Minister's youthful dabblings in blackface, over at Toronto's Soulpepper Theatre, they were starting rehearsals on a play in which Indigenous actors perform in whiteface.

The play is the 1990s classic Almighty Voice and His Wife by Daniel David Moses, a landmark of Canadian Indigenous theatre and now the first work by a First Nations playwright to be produced by Soulpepper, the city's largest not-for-profit theatre company.

An unconventional retelling of the legend of Almighty Voice, the 19th-century Cree outlaw and folk hero, Moses's script begins as a romantic lovers-on-therun tale. But then, in the startling second act, it's reframed as a crass, exploitative vaudeville show. The play's two characters return, slathered in white makeup, to offer a crude colonial take on the tragedy we've just witnessed, complete with "cigarstore Indian" jokes and "bloodthirsty redskin" clichés.

Coming just as the young Justin Trudeau's misadventures with greasepaint have conjured up the spectre of the old, racist minstrel shows, the play's timing couldn't be better.

"It's uncanny," agrees director Jani Lauzon, laughing as she pushes back her long mane of silver hair. As it happens, Moses's play is mocking the sort of "redface" entertainments that denigrated North America's Indigenous people in the same way the minstrel shows belittled African Americans.

Also flourishing at the dawn of the 20th century, these vaudeville shows perpetuated the noxious "Indian" stereotypes later adopted by Hollywood. Their most famous iteration was Buffalo Bill Cody's touring Wild West show, in which the great Lakota Chief Sitting Bull was a star attraction.

"That was a time when the world was really excited about dressing up as an Indian - or having us dress up as Indians and perform - but we weren't allowed to actually be Indian," says Lauzon, who is Métis. "It's a time in our history when our image was being usurped and contorted and transformed."

For Moses, reclaiming those vaudeville performances was a way to avoid turning Almighty Voice's story into just a tragic tale. "I didn't want to tell another story where the Indian gets defeated," says the veteran playwright, who grew up on Ontario's Six Nations reserve. He's a gentle giant of a man with a crooked smile and a sweet demeanour that belies his wicked sense of humour.

Almighty Voice, or Kisse-Manitou-Wayou, was in fact the victim of a tragic misunderstanding. A Plains Cree living on Saskatchewan's One Arrow reserve in the lean years after the failed Riel Rebellion, he was jailed in 1895 for butchering a government cow. Misled into thinking he would be hanged for his crime, he busted out and went on the lam. After shooting a North-West Mounted Police sergeant who attempted to arrest him, he became the subject of a lengthy, bloody manhunt that only ended when he and two companions were brought down by cannon fire.

His story had been dramatized before - even inspiring a 1974 film, Alien Thunder, starring Gordon Tootoosis and Donald Sutherland, but Moses first encountered it while doing research at Brantford, Ont.'s First Nations museum, the Woodland Cultural Centre. He says he discovered "seven or eight" different versions, based mainly on written reports by the North-West Mounted Police and the government. Not satisfied with their "renegade Indian" accounts, he began looking for, in his words, "something that would allow me to see the human beings in the story."

He found it in a passing mention of an unnamed woman who was with Almighty Voice when he shot the Mountie. "In the reports, they don't pay attention to her. But I come from Six Nations, and we don't not pay attention to the women!" he says with a laugh. "I thought, 'What's she doing there? Who is she?' " Out of that speculation evolved the tender love story of the fugitive hero and his fierce but faithful young wife, a residential-school survivor nicknamed "White Girl." Written with humour, poignancy and lyricism (Moses is also a poet), it became the tragedy he had tried to avoid.

But then that tragedy turns to travesty in the satirical second act.

"I wanted to flip the perspective from Almighty Voice to the people who were hunting him down," Moses says. The idea of playing it in whiteface came from his involvement with Toronto's seminal Native Earth theatre company: "A lot of our actors had clown training, so I thought it worked perfectly."

After a decade's research, the play came pouring out of him in a three-week writing bout at the Banff Playwrights Colony. It premiered in 1991 at Ottawa's Great Canadian Theatre Company before going on to be staged at Native Earth the following year. The original GCTC production starred Billy Merasty as Almighty Voice and Lauzon as White Girl.

"That was when I fell in love with the play and with Daniel's writing," Lauzon says. "For me, it was an actor's dream - and a huge challenge as well." This is a play that requires its two actors to portray a moving love story, a Cree Romeo and Juliet, then do an about-face and execute a zany song-and-dance routine. "Billy and I were often exhausted," Lauzon recalls with a smile. For the Soulpepper show, she's cast a pair of dynamic young performers: James Dallas Smith, an actor-musician of Mohawk-Scottish descent, and Dora Awardwinning Métis actress Michaela Washburn.

Although Soulpepper has revisited other Canadian classics in its 21-year history, this is its first dip into the First Nations canon and the first show with a predominantly Indigenous cast and creative team. And that's just one of the milestones for Canada's Indigenous theatre artists this season. September saw the inauguration of the new Indigenous Theatre division at Ottawa's National Arts Centre, while in Calgary, Making Treaty 7 has become the first Indigenous company to take up residence in one of the city's major venues, the Grand Theatre.

Lauzon thinks it's a sign of new times. "It used to be that the world wasn't interested in our stories, so we just did what we did for ourselves," she says.

"What is cool is that now the world has taken an interest and we're finally able to access the resources to create great theatre.

It's nice to have allies like Soulpepper and the recognition that our stories are important."

Moses believes there's "a great hunger" to hear those stories. A professor emeritus at Queen's University, in the years before his recent retirement he taught a course on First Nations plays that he says was an eye-opener for his white students.

"They couldn't believe these plays were based on actual history - they hadn't been taught any of it," he says. "And they were just hungry to know about the complexity of this country. They had thought our history was boring, and it's not, it's real dramatic."

Almighty Voice and His Wife runs from Oct. 11 to Nov. 10 at the Young Centre for the Performing Arts in Toronto. (

Associated Graphic

Almighty Voice and His Wife writer Daniel David Moses, seen with director Jani Lauzon, uses whiteface to blend tragedy with satire in his story of a Cree outlaw who was a victim of a tragic misunderstanding that led to a bloody manhunt.


Coach Herdman is changing the face of Canadian soccer
Thursday, October 17, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B15

TORONTO -- In the days leading up to Canada's CONCACAF Nations League game against the United States, Canadian coach John Herdman said his players didn't need him for motivation.

A 34-year winless run against the Americans plus the need for valuable FIFA rankings points to earn a more direct route in World Cup qualifying would do the job just fine, he reasoned.

So did the 44-year-old Herdman, renowned for his ability to inspire, hold back?

"I think every minute of the day he has a motivational speech," said a smiling Lucas Cavallini, who scored the insurance stoppage-time goal in Canada's 2-0 win Tuesday at BMO Field.

"That's why we're here. That's why we're doing important things."

"Ever since John took over, he's been focused on changing the identity of Canadian soccer," defender Kamal Miller added.

"And step by step, every camp, we've just been getting better and better. We feel like we're reaching new heights."

Said teenage forward Jonathan David: "This guy knows what he's doing ... because he has a tactic every game."

While there is far more work to be done by the 75th-ranked Canadian men, it can be argued that Herdman has changed the face of soccer in Canada since being named women's coach eight years ago.

"He brought new football to Canada. ... Thank you for bringing the spirit, the belief, the energy to these guys," veteran goalkeeper Milan Borjan said as he sat next to Herdman in the postmatch news conference.

Herdman inherited a women's team that was in a dark place after finishing last under Italy's Carolina Morace at a disastrous 2011 World Cup in Germany.

Herdman helped rebuild the women's talent pipeline, reminding the women why they played soccer and for whom they did it and led them to back-to-back Olympic bronze medals and fourth place in the FIFA rankings.

In January, 2018, he switched focus to the Canadian men - another team struggling for a road map out of the depths of CONCACAF.

Subsequent news that Canada would co-host the 2026 World Cup with Mexico and the U.S.

gave fans something to look forward to, given the Canadian men have only ever attended one World Cup (in 1986).

Herdman wanted more.

"We're going to qualify for 2022 Qatar," he told a news conference in February, 2019. "And lay the foundation for 2026."

Herdman wears many hats - coach, confessor, motivator among them. He surrounds himself with talent, counting goalkeeping coach Simon Eaddy and fitness coach Cesar Meylan among his inner circle from his days as women's coach. While he made changes to the existing men's staff, he also kept on some veteran team officials.

And he made a point of listing off a string of Canada Soccer employees after Tuesday's game, making sure they got their recognition for the famous win.

As coach, he has a knack of saying the right thing at the right time.

Take Liam Fraser as an example. The 21-year-old came on in the ninth minute, replacing the injured Mark-Anthony Kaye, and delivered a calm, composed performance in his senior debut.

After the game, Herdman shared a conversation he had with the Toronto FC midfielder.

"Only last camp, I'm sitting on the stairs with him and the kid's upset that he can't see an opportunity coming for his country.

And here you are," he said with a smile.

"Funnily enough, on the stairs three weeks ago, I said 'Son, just keep being good and the universe will bring you something. Just keep being good.' And it did. He got on that field tonight and he did bloody well."

Herdman watches over teenage star Alphonso Davies, trying to shield him from the expectations that come with a big-money transfer to Bayern Munich while putting him in a place to succeed.

"With Phonzie, it's just 'Get out there and play, son. Just go and do your thing,' " Herdman said.

The night before the U.S. game, he sat down with Davies and showed him clips from his days with the Vancouver Whitecaps.

"We just went back to some of his original days where when he got kicked, he got straight back up," Herdman said. "And when balls went in behind him, he'd recover and he'd fight to get it back.

I think a little bit of that was missing. Just that wanting to play free and thinking he had to be in a structure. But he was free tonight and it was lovely to see."

Herdman also knows that competition in the Canadian ranks works wonders.

"He can't sit on his heels," he said of Davies. "We had Cavallini and [Junior] Hoilett on the bench."

Cavallini plies his trade for Puebla in Mexico while Hoilett is a veteran of the English Premier League who now plays in the Championship with Cardiff City.

In past years, they would be automatic starters.

Hard work and commitment have been constants for Herdman, who grew up in Consett, England, just outside Newcastle, the son and grandson of steelworkers.

He played semi-pro football in the Northern League and for his university, soon realizing a pro career was not in the cards. So he got into coaching, starting to take courses at 16. He had his own soccer school at 23.

After spending time in South America to study Brazilian coaching methods, he returned home and set up a Brazilian soccer school. Players from Sunderland started sending their kids there, which led to a job offer in the Sunderland academy.

He spent three years there, working with a young Jordan Henderson, now a Liverpool and England star.

Herdman was lecturing four days a week in the sports science department at Northumbria University and working at the academy in the evening. He considered a PhD, using his experience at Sunderland as research.

Then Dr. Paul Potrac, his university supervisor, moved to Otago University in New Zealand. Potrac told Herdman about a soccer job as a regional director in New Zealand, selling him on the chance to essentially take over a blank football canvas.

Herdman took him up on it, coaching all ages while creating a soccer blueprint for the region.

His hours matched his passion.

"I can't remember when I haven't done an 80-plus-hour week," he once said. "It's my personality, probably my mental disorder ... when I'm tuned into something I'm passionate about, I'm a bit crazy about it."

Herdman took the Kiwi under-20 team to the 2006 andc '08 FIFA-20 Women's World Cups before leading the senior side to the World Cup in 2007 and 2011.

Then Canada came calling, dangling the lure of staging the 2015 Women's World Cup.

Herdman celebrated Tuesday's win, which featured Canada's first goals against the U.S. in 12 years. His voice slightly hoarse, he proved to be in fine hugging form.

But he reminded listeners there is a long way to go.

"It's only one step, it's only one little drop in the ocean I'm hoping for this team. There's more to come," he said.

Associated Graphic

Canadian soccer coach John Herdman, on the sidelines of an women's Olympic semi-final match against Germany in Brazil in 2016, switched his focus to the men's side two years later.


Climate fears have Canadians forgoing children
Faced with a crisis that leaves them hopeless for future generations, thousands are pledging not to start a family until real action is taken
Thursday, October 10, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A8

Food security, melting permafrost, mass extinction - they're just a few of the environmental issues keeping Deraek Menard and Alysia Boudreau up at night.

So this fall the Nanaimo, B.C., couple made a heavy decision: The two signed up on #NoFutureNoChildren, an online initiative that's seeing thousands of young people pledge not to have children unless governments take action on climate change.

"I can't consciously bring a child into the world knowing that their future is so unsure," said Ms.

Boudreau, 26. "It's hard because I have strong maternal instincts."

After student climate rallies swelled worldwide last month and environmentalists blocked bridges in cities across Canada as part of "Extinction Rebellion" protests this week, a quieter movement is now playing out between couples and families at home about whether or not to have children.

For many pledge takers who spoke to The Globe and Mail, the idea of bringing a child into a world facing melting polar ice caps, flooding, drought and forced mass migration seems unfathomable. For them, this is not about population control or the carbon footprint of individual babies, but an attempt to make governments listen and move on climate change. While these young adults are certainly not the first to choose lives without children, this may be the first generation doing it out of a sense of civic duty.

Emma Lim, an 18-year-old student and activist from London, Ont., launched #NoFutureNoChildren in mid-September as an "expression of fear and a plea for action." Visitors to the website are greeted by a full-screen image of a roaring forest fire. A ticker counts the number of pledge takers - now inching past 5,000, many of them 15 to 26 years old.

Their testimonials are bleak: "Having children is an act of hope for the future. I have no hope," writes one from Texas.

"We are people who desperately want children but will not bring a child into an uncertain future," said Ms. Lim, who is studying biomedical science at McGill University. "This pledge is our small way of asking for our safety and for the safety of our children."

Ms. Boudreau and Mr. Menard, 30, both campaign co-ordinators for the Green Party of Canada, have struggled to raise their drastic choice with their families.

They realize that, for some people, what they're doing looks like an extreme stunt. For them, it was a painful decision.

"There's a lot of thought that goes into something like this, especially for people who really did want to have children," she said.

"People are not taking this lightly.

It's not hysterics."

The Canadian #NoFutureNoChildren pledge follows similar grassroots initiatives worldwide.

In the United Kingdom, there is BirthStrike; in the United States, the organization Conceivable Future has people with and without children discussing their fears as parents amid climate disruption.

Many of the pledge takers describe the fear as paralyzing.

"We're seeing a certain amount of depletion amongst people who are actively involved in advocacy work around this and feeling some helplessness," said Sarah Levitt, a final-year psychiatry resident at the University of Toronto who co-founded the Canadian Climate Psychiatry Alliance to help mental-health professionals better understand climate anxiety (or eco-anxiety), an emerging area of research.

Whitehorse's Joshua Kearney, 18, said he had always dreamed of raising three kids in Yukon. Deeply concerned about food security and melting permafrost - in the region, many structures are built atop it - he said he has recalibrated his plans.

"I, like many others, am terrified," said Mr. Kearney, who is studying general science at the University of Alberta. "We need a long-term fix for me to feel comfortable with building my own family."

Toronto's Alienor Rougeot, 20, is also worried about food security, plus the potential surge of diseases, including the northward spread of tick-borne Lyme disease, linked to climate change.

"Given the weight that I feel on my shoulders all the time and given the fact that I've grown up with this idea that I was born under the threat of the climate crisis, I wouldn't want someone else to have to deal with that," said Ms. Rougeot, who is studying economics and public policy at the University of Toronto.

Climate anxiety can encompass stress, depression and guilt over the future of the planet, said Lise Van Susteren, a Washingtonbased psychiatrist who co-founded the Climate Psychiatry Alliance. "Kids are hearing about climate and collapse," Dr. Van Susteren said. "How could they not be anxious?" Reading through the online testimonials at #NoFutureNoChildren, Elizabeth Haase saw young people being gaslighted for raising grave environmental concerns. Dr. Haase, a Carson City, Nev., psychiatrist, likened their situation to that of Cassandra, the Trojan princess of Greek mythology who could foretell the future, but could neither change it nor convince others with her warnings.

"These kids are coming up against bringing the bad news to their parents and their parents just not getting it," said Dr. Haase, who is producing the documentary Frogs in a Pot, about the psychological effects of climate change on young people.

Dr. Haase said some parents view no-children pledges as a personal affront. "It's a huge narcissistic injury to have your kids choose not to propagate your genes," she said. "It's a tremendous disappointment to your sense of future and [the hope] that you might be a grandparent some day."

Ms. Boudreau said she has had a hard time opening up to her family about the decision. Many women face fierce pushback when they opt out of having kids, but doing so because of climate change is even harder for outsiders to digest, she said.

Her partner said he's grown worried and judgmental at his family gatherings, where relatives bring babies or speak of their plans to have children. On his own no-baby position, Mr.

Menard bites his tongue: "Nobody likes a downer."

Ms. Rougeot has encountered suggestions that hers is an empty pledge. She has no long-term partner and, as an undergraduate, has no imminent plans to have children - climate crisis or not. But "we're not going to monitor and track in 10 years every person that took the pledge and then say, 'She had a child. Liar,' " she said. "Isn't it bad enough that young people have these thoughts? ... This should be alarming."

While Dr. Haase views the pledges as "self-affirming and powerful," she also worries about young people's hopelessness.

Dr. Van Susteren urges parents of teens experiencing climate anxiety not to minimize their concerns and instead point out what the family is already doing locally to help the environment, as well as suggest their children seek out a like-minded community.

For young people who always imagined they would have children but are now thinking twice, Dr. Van Susteren understands it's a personal decision, but hopes some will reconsider. After all, who will make up the next generation of protesters agitating for change if not the children of today's young climate warriors?

"I would encourage them to recognize that we need good people to continue this battle," she said. "I fully expect that any child of theirs would be such a person."

Associated Graphic

Eighteen-year-old London, Ont., student and activist Emma Lim, seen in Montreal last month, launched #NoFutureNoChildren as 'a plea for action' to governments.


Friday, October 11, 2019 – Print Edition, Page P42

To toast the 150th anniversary of Moët Impérial, a dinner in Epernay highlights the history and innovation that keeps the Champagne region popping the words "Avenue de Champagne" conjure up visions of a grand French boulevard flowing with effervescent wine like a scene out of a more grown-up - though equally burp-filled - sequel to Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. But such a road exists, in the quaint town of Epernay about 90 minutes east of Paris, and it is overflowing with Champagne in a way that's more literal than you might imagine. Below the road are 110 kilometres of white chalk caves where millions of bottles lie, building up their bubbles for the world's top houses.

Marking the entrance to the avenue is the home of Moët & Chandon. On the south side of the street is its grand office block, which includes a visitor centre, boutique and access to Moët's own 28 kilometres of cellars. On the north side is the Résidence de Trianon, a village estate built for Jean-Rémy Moët, grandson of house founder Claude Moët, in the early 1800s that now functions as a clubhouse for the label's top customers. In the spring, it was where Moët & Chandon hosted a series of celebrations to toast the 150th anniversary of its flagship bottle, Moët Impérial.

The history of Moët & Chandon begins another century and a half before that first Impérial popped.

In 1716, Claude began working as a négociant, bottling and selling wine for the region's grape growers. As sweet, sparkling vintages gained popularity in royal courts from Spain to Russia, Moët assembled an enviable list of clients, including France's King Louis XV.

Jean-Rémy is responsible for focusing the company's efforts on bubbly and acquiring hundreds of hectares of the area's best vineyards. "Chandon" enters the picture in the form of Pierre-Gabriel Chandon, who married Jean-Rémy's daughter, Adelaide, in 1816 and partnered with her brother, Victor, on the new venture Moët & Chandon. Today, the business is the flagship winemaker of the LVMH group, which includes other Champagne houses, among them Krug, Ruinart and Veuve Clicquot.

Moët Impérial's big moment came in 1869, when tastes started to shift away from over-sweetened Champagne. Previously in Russia, for example, the preferred style of bubbly had some 300 grams of sugar per litre, about three times the sugar in a can of cola today. Moët Impérial, on the other hand, is in the drier brut style. Today, in the hands, nose and palate of cellar master Benoît Gouez, it's only become brut-er with hints of apple, pear and white peach. The latest bottling only has seven grams of sugar per litre, reflecting the contemporary oenophile's penchant for freshness in sparkling wine. "I don't know what the taste of Moët Impérial was 150 years ago. We have one bottle left but we never open it," says Gouez.

"Moët & Chandon has always been consumer driven.

It doesn't mean that we're doing everything they ask for, but at least we listen."

Reflecting Moët's roots as a négociant, creating a non-vintage Champagne like Impérial, where consistency trumps idiosyncrasy, involves mixing and matching wines. The fruit can be sourced from hundreds of different local growers, and reserve wines are stored for a few years as a hedge against inconsistent growing seasons. According to Gouez, there's no secret recipe, though the blend usually includes a relatively equal amount of pinot nero and pinot meunier and a smaller measure of Chardonnay.

"I want our Champagnes to taste like the grapes they're made of - it's a very simple concept," he says.

"Moët Impérial is a little bit of everything.

The beauty of that wine is that it's so complete... there are so many elements involved. What I like with Impérial is that idea of spontaneity, of not being obliged to wait for a special occasion."

Still, momentous events are central to the brand's iconography. Images of Hollywood stars downing flutes of Moët at awards shows and race car drivers dumping magnums on their pit crews have added to its cachet. So it's not surprising that Impérial's 150th was marked with some pretty over-the-top dos.

"We live in the present, but we have roots, we have history, we have patrimony, we have people, we have a style," says Gouez. All those aspects were on display for the series of celebratory dinners hosted at the Trianon house. The relationship between past and present was emphasized by the menu, which included pairings of four dishes interpreted in the styles of 1869 and today, including sorel soup, Russian salad, poached turbot and a gingerbread dessert. A month later, at the Château de Saran, the recently revamped seat of the Moët family, celebrities including model Kate Moss, actors Uma Thurman and Natalie Portman and tennis star Roger Federer enjoyed a similar parade of dishes - and a fireworks display over the hills of Champagne.

Moving forward, the property will become another venue to host high-rolling bubbly fans, but accessing the world of Champagne centred around Epernay doesn't require a home cellar

full of cases of fizz. A good spot to base yourself in the area is the Royal Champagne Hotel & Spa, which looms like a Bond villain's lair overlooking the vineyards and boasts an extensive bar menu of local bottles. Tours of the Moët & Chandon cellars can be booked online for visits between April and December. And opening in February 2020, the Musée du vin de Champagne et d'Archéologie régionale d'Epernay will capture the unique history and character of the region's wine culture.

Gouez, who has worked in California, Australia and New Zealand, says that what makes Epernay unique is its combination of terroir and technical know-how. "Epernay is the capital of Champagne, in the sense of being in the middle of the vineyards," he says. "And I would say the soul of Moët & Chandon is in Epernay - in the cellars." Just below the cobblestones on the Avenue de Champagne, in fact.

Associated Graphic

The Moët & Chandon head office (left) enjoys pride of place as the first house located along Epernay's Avenue de Champagne (top left). It includes a statue devoted to monk and cellar master Dom Pérignon (top right), whose name is used for another one of the house's sparkling wines. Across the street is the Résidence de Trianon, the historic village estate of the Moët family (above).

Benoït Gouez (far left), Moët & Chandon's cellar master, hosted a series of dinner parties at the Résidence de Trianon to mark Moët Impérial's 150th anniversary. The event offered guests a glimpse at the only original bottle in the house's possession and a menu by chef Marco Fadiga that contrasted dishes prepared in the style of 1869 and today (below).

The new Royal Champagne Hotel & Spa (top left) overlooks Epernay and the surrounding vineyards. Moët & Chandon's Mont Aïgu property (above) and its kilometres of caves below the city (right) highlight the house's sprawling influence in the region.

Obama wades into federal election, endorses Trudeau
Thursday, October 17, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A1

OTTAWA WASHINGTON OTTAWA -- Former U.S. president Barack Obama added his star-power to Justin Trudeau's re-election campaign Wednesday, endorsing the Liberal Leader as he tries to convince progressive voters his party is the only one that can stop a Conservative government.

The former president issued the statement on Twitter, with less than a week to go before the Oct. 21 federal vote.

"I was proud to work with Justin Trudeau as President," Mr.Obama said.

"He's a hard-working, effective leader who takes on big issues like climate change. The world needs his progressive leadership now, and I hope our neighbors to the north support him for another term."

The rare intervention from a former U.S. president into Canadian elections comes as the Liberals and Conservatives are deadlocked in the polls.

Mr. Trudeau declined to say Wednesday whether he or his team asked Mr. Obama for the endorsement.

He also did not respond to a question about concerns that Mr.Obama's endorsement could constitute foreign interference.

"I appreciate the kind words and I'm working hard to keep our progress going," Mr. Trudeau briefly said to reporters outside a coffee shop in Saint-Hyacinthe, Que., on Wednesday afternoon.

Mr. Obama's endorsement was trending on Twitter and had more than 30,000 retweets and 192,000 likes by 9 p.m. Wednesday.

Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer said on Wednesday in Ancaster, Ont., that he's not very interested in "what former foreign leaders are saying."

"I've got millions of Canadians like the ones here tonight behind me," he said after a gathering at a packed pub.

Mr. Scheer also declined to say whether he thought it was appropriate for Mr. Obama to weigh in on the Canadian election, saying that was for Canadians to judge.

NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh, who himself has garnered attention for his celebrity followers on Instagram, said Wednesday he has a lot of respect for Mr. Obama, but "in this regard he is wrong."

"Mr. Trudeau has really let down people and consistently chosen to help out the powerful and the wealthy over Canadians," Mr. Singh said in an interview.

Bruce Heyman, who served as U.S. ambassador to Canada during Mr. Obama's second term in office, also endorsed Mr. Trudeau on Twitter shortly after Mr. Obama did. In an interview with The Globe and Mail, Mr. Heyman said he didn't know Mr. Obama was going to endorse the Liberal Leader and he decided to second the former president's endorsement after seeing the tweet.

Earlier this year, the Trudeau government warned that this federal election would be vulnerable to foreign interference. The focus of the concern was largely on covert actions, such as spreading false information online, as opposed to overt actions, such as public statements from political leaders.

Elections Canada said the endorsement itself does not constitute foreign interference in the election.

"A foreign citizen tweeting, or speaking at an event organized in Canada, does not by itself constitute an instance of undue foreign influence under the Canada Elections Act," spokesperson Natasha Gauthier said in an e-mail.

"Whether expenses were incurred, who incurred them and for what reason would be among the factors that need to be considered before determining if undue foreign influence has taken place."

Liberal Party spokesperson Zita Astravas said the party did not pay for the endorsement.

The White House did not respond to a request for comment on Mr. Obama's actions, and on whether U.S. President Donald Trump had a preference in the election.

Mr. Obama's office did not respond to questions on whether Mr. Trudeau or his campaign had requested the endorsement.

Mr. Obama met Mr. Trudeau for a beer in May when he was in Ottawa to deliver a speech. Mr.

Obama played host to Mr. Trudeau for an official visit at the White House in 2016, in the Democrat's final year in office.

Matt Wolking, deputy communications director for Mr.

Trump's re-election campaign, mocked the endorsement on Twitter.


Mr. Obama's endorsement lands in the middle of an impeachment inquiry into Mr.Trump's efforts to solicit foreign interference in next year's U.S.

election by pushing the President of Ukraine to investigate Joe Biden, one of his potential rivals for the White House.

Senator Mitt Romney, one of the few Republicans to criticize Mr. Trump's actions in Ukraine and Mr. Obama's opponent on the presidential ballot in 2012, told The Globe and Mail that Mr.Obama's endorsement did not constitute foreign election interference.

"There's interference and then there's support for a friend," he said outside the Senate chamber.

"Election interference would be working behind the scenes to try to get other people to interfere and to distort the electoral process."

Democratic Senator Joe Manchin evinced some discomfort when informed of Mr. Obama's move Wednesday.

"I say we all stay in our own lanes," he told The Globe and Mail at the U.S. Capitol.

Still, he said Mr. Obama's decision to weigh in, as a private citizen and friend of Mr. Trudeau's, was different from Mr. Trump's actions on Ukraine.

The latest Nanos Research survey results show that even after Thursday's French-language debate, Friday's release of the costed Conservative and NDP platforms and the Thanksgiving long weekend, no party has established a clear lead.

The Conservatives and Liberals remain in a statistical tie with 33-per-cent and 32-per-cent support respectively. The NDP has climbed from 15 per cent at the start of the month to 19 per cent, followed by the Greens at 9 per cent and the Bloc Québécois at 6 per cent.

In an interview, pollster Nik Nanos said it is highly unlikely that the Liberals or Conservatives could win the 170 seats required to form a majority government with polling numbers in the low 30s.

"This has really been an election about imperfect choices and indecision. It's pretty clear that voters aren't enthralled with either two of the front-running parties or leaders and no one's ready to give either one of them any type of strong mandate," he said.

The poll was sponsored by The Globe and Mail and CTV, with a total of 1,200 Canadians surveyed on Oct. 12, 13 and 15. It has a margin of error of 2.8 percentage points, 19 times out of 20. Respondents were asked: "If a federal election were held today, could you please rank your top two current local voting preferences?" A report on the results, questions and methodology for this and all surveys can be found at

Mr. Obama was president of the United States from 2009 to 2017. He also endorsed Emmanuel Macron for president in France's 2017 election.

Former Canadian ambassador to the United Nations Paul Heinbecker said he didn't think there was any impropriety in Mr. Obama's endorsement.

"I don't think it's unfair, just unorthodox," Mr. Heinbecker said. He added that he thinks most American politicians "know too little about Canadian politics to risk intervening."

With reports from Michelle Zilio, Janice Dickson and Kristy Kirkup

Associated Graphic

NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh poses for a selfie with students from Westwood High School during a campaign stop in Hudson, Que., on Wednesday.


Ottawa probes conflict of Crown chair
Construction company president told Defence Construction Canada she had resigned position, but stayed on as consultant
Friday, October 18, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A1

OTTAWA -- The federal government has ordered an "urgent" investigation into the business activities of the Liberal-appointed chair of a Crown corporation after learning that she worked as a consultant for an Ontario construction company shortly after she resigned as its top executive to resolve a conflict of interest.

The Globe and Mail discovered on Thursday that Moreen Miller's work for Fowler Construction Co.

Ltd. didn't end after she resigned as president in September, 2018, and maintained her part-time position as chair of Defence Construction Canada. She later helped Fowler on a quarry project in a township near Orillia, Ont.

The government has also asked Ethics Commissioner Mario Dion to investigate Ms. Miller, who was appointed in 2017 as chair of DCC, which handles military infrastructure contracts. The Globe reported earlier this week that DCC had suspended Fowler from bidding on contracts while Ms. Miller was chair, but lifted the suspension after she resigned. Ms. Miller is a veteran of the construction industry who was named to two advisory agencies by the former Ontario Liberal government.

She did not return a phone call and e-mail seeking comment.

Public Services and Procurement Minister Carla Qualtrough, who had defended the appointment of Ms. Miller over the objections of DCC's then-chief executive officer and independent directors, on Thursday said an internal probe has been launched.

"Neither the minister nor her office was aware of these allegations prior to today," Ms. Qualtrough's press secretary, Marielle Hossack, said in an e-mail to The Globe. "The minister has directed her officials to investigate this matter on an urgent basis."

DCC's spokesperson Erica Lyle also told The Globe the corporation had "engaged the office of the conflict-of-interest and ethics commissioner in this matter."

In late 2018, Ms. Miller assured DCC's chief executive officer, James Paul, and Mr. Dion that she had severed all ties with Fowler, according to internal e-mails obtained by The Globe. Mr. Paul's term was not renewed after it expired in July, 2019, and he is suing the government, alleging he was punished for raising concerns about Ms. Miller's apparent conflict of interest, The Globe reported on Thursday.

Ms. Miller's appointment as chair of DCC in November, 2017, sparked an internal battle over potential conflict of interest when she said Fowler Construction should be allowed to continue bidding on DCC contracts.

DCC's five independent directors resigned in protest last year, citing what they considered insufficient action from Ms. Qualtrough to address the issue.

Mr. Paul suspended Fowler from bidding for DCC work in April, 2018, and Mr. Dion instructed DCC to set up a conflict-of-interest screen to ensure Ms. Miller did not make any decisions that could benefit Fowler.

The conflict-of-interest screen and the suspension ended late last year after Ms. Miller resigned as president of Fowler and assured DCC and Mr. Dion's office she no longer had any private interest in the company.

Ms. Lyle of DCC said late on Thursday that the Crown corporation had not awarded any contracts to Fowler since Ms. Miller stepped down as president and the bidding suspension was rescinded.

Ms. Miller told DCC on Nov. 1, 2018, in an e-mail that she had no remaining interest in Fowler. She offered the same assurance to the ethics commissioner's office on Sept. 27. And in an e-mail on Oct.

1, 2018, Ms. Miller told Mr. Dion's office: "I can confirm that that my only private interest in Fowler was as an employee and that interest ended on Sept. 14. None of my relatives or close friends have a private interest in Fowler."

But local officials in the township of Ramara, near Orillia, told The Globe that as early as December, 2018, Ms. Miller was helping Fowler with a proposed quarry expansion in their area.

On Dec. 19, 2018, Ms. Miller met with Township of Ramara Mayor Basil Clarke and councillor David Snutch on behalf of Fowler. Another Fowler representative was also present. "She said she was retired, like past president, but she was helping them with this file as, say, an unofficial consultant, because she had the history on the quarry in our township," Mr. Clarke recalled.

He said the meeting was to discuss Fowler's request for rezoning of a local quarry so the company could extract more rock.

Mr. Snutch said Ms. Fowler told him that while she had resigned from Fowler "she been brought on as consultant to push through this rezoning application in Ramara township."

On July 11, 2019, Ramara township held a public meeting to discuss Fowler's rezoning request.

Ms. Miller attended with Fowler officials. A photo of Ms. Miller at the meeting was later published by the media outlet David Donnelly, a lawyer acting for a local citizens group, the Ramara Legacy Alliance, that was fighting the quarry expansion, said Ms. Miller took an active part at the meeting along with Fowler executives.

"The mayor asked for the [Fowler] operations manager to get up to speak, and Ms. Miller grabbed him and said, 'Don't get up there.' She was right in the middle of their operations team and experts," Mr. Donnelly said.

Later in July, Ramara township rejected Fowler's rezoning request. Fowler has appealed the decision to the Local Planning Appeal Tribunal (LPAT).

On Aug. 7, 2019, Ms. Miller, on behalf of Fowler, met with Ramara township's chief administrative officer John Pinsent, along with other Fowler representatives, regarding the quarry application. Mr. Pinsent said his assumption was Ms. Miller "was a member of Fowler's management team." He said he did not know her precise capacity, but had been told she was a past president of the company.

In a lawsuit filed earlier this month, Mr. Paul, the former chief executive officer of DCC, says Ms.

Qualtrough appointed Ms. Miller as chair despite concerns he and the five independent directors, who arrange procurement for military infrastructure projects, had raised.

Mr. Paul further alleges that one of Fowler's owners, Bill Graham, who was defence minister in a former Liberal government, and a defence policy adviser to the Trudeau government, would have been aware of the benefits of having an executive from his construction company on the board of DCC.

"Mr. Graham therefore has inside knowledge of the opportunity that Defence Construction Canada's work presented for Fowler and the benefit to Fowler of Ms. Miller being appointed chairperson," Mr. Paul's lawsuit said. None of his allegations have been proven in court.

A spokesman for Mr. Graham has said he had no involvement in the management of Fowler.

Mr. Paul, who led DCC for 10 years, says in his lawsuit the dispute made him a target of Ms.

Miller's wrath and resulted in Ottawa's decision to reject his application to serve a third five-year term as CEO in July of this year.

His lawsuit seeks $1.5-million in damages from the government for allegedly "targeting [him] for removal ... as a reprisal for pursuing the conflict-of-interest issue."

Associated Graphic

Moreen Miller, in the front row, reading a document next to two Fowler executives, continued to work with the company after resigning as president in September, 2018, and maintained her part-time position as chair of Defence Construction Canada, The Globe has discovered.


A year after legalization, Ontario's lack of pot shops hinders industry
Friday, October 18, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B2

TORONTO -- The bohemian Toronto neighbourhood of Kensington Market has long been a hotspot for weed culture and home to pot lounge Hotbox café, and yet - one year after the legalization of recreational cannabis in Canada - there still isn't a single legal weed retailer here.

It's not for lack of trying.

Once the Ontario government switched the cannabis store model from public to private last September, Hotbox owner Abi Roach started to prepare her own store, as well as two other Toronto locations.

After spending hundreds of thousands of dollars, the longtime pot-legalization advocate learned that the province's retail licences initially would be limited to just 25 and allocated by random lottery in January - and her entry didn't win.

The Hotbox was also one of at least 16 Kensington Market area locations entered into the Ontario regulator's second lottery in August for another 42 stores - and not one was chosen.

"A small company like mine, which doesn't make a lot of money, we spent close to half a million dollars getting ready three stores for applications ... We lost all our savings," Ms. Roach said.

It's an example of the cannabis retail challenges that continue to plague Canada's biggest province, where the number of legal shops per capita remains far lower than in most other parts of the country.

And as the country marks one year since legalization on Oct. 17 and prepares for new pot products such as topicals and edibles to hit shelves, cannabis stocks have come down from their highs as licensed producers miss their revenue targets - the blame for which some companies have put on the scant number of retail stores, particularly in Ontario.

Across the country, there are more than 500 licensed cannabis providers authorized to sell pot, although not all are up and running. That's compared with approximately 100 pot shops that opened on legalization day last year.

Initial product shortages and supply-chain issues have largely been resolved, but consumer access to legal cannabis remains patchy between provinces and territories, and the black market continues to thrive.

While the proportion of cannabis consumers who say they purchased at least some of their product from a legal source has risen to nearly half, 42 per cent say they bought at least some of their stash from an illegal source, according to survey results released by Statistics Canada in August.

The highest number of legal pot stores are in Alberta, with more than 300 licensed private cannabis providers for just 4.37 million people.

Ontario - with 14.57 million people, or 40 per cent of the country's population - has just 24 stores, but the government is in the process of increasing that number to 75.

Newfoundland and Labrador, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and British Columbia all have more legal cannabis stores than Ontario, but the region with the highest ratio of stores per capita is Northwest Territories, with five locations selling pot and alcohol for its population of 38,780, or one for every 9,000 people.

The first six months of cannabis retail sales were "generally muted," largely owing to the absence of physical retail stores in Ontario, said Vivien Azer, an analyst with Cowen.

"The rollout in Canada hasn't been perfect, but early growing pains in any nascent market are to be expected," she said in a recent note. "We have been encouraged by the steady sequential growth we are seeing in the monthly data, in particular since Ontario brought physical doors online."

Last month, licensed producer Aurora Cannabis cited Ontario's small and slow-growing cannabis retail network as a major reason why its fourth-quarter revenues fell short of its own guidance.

Meanwhile, licensed producer Hexo Corp. cut its own revenue guidance for its latest quarter from roughly $26-million to a range of $14.5-million to $16.5million, also pointing to a "delay in retail store openings in our major markets."

A look at the monthly cannabis retail numbers from Statistics Canada shows the industry players aren't just blowing smoke.

In July, the latest numbers available, cannabis retail sales were $104.4-million, surpassing the $100-million mark for the first time, with Ontario as the largest contributor with $29.6-million with just two dozen bricks-andmortar outlets.

Although all consumers can buy pot legally online, it's clear that new and existing pot users want to shop in a physical store, said Greg Engel, chief executive of cannabis company Organigram.

"Having a very limited number of stores initially, and still today, has certainly had an impact," he said.

Ontario's rollout was complicated by a change from government-run stores to private just months before legalization. Alberta, however, got it right, industry players say, in large part because the province has for decades had a private sales model for alcohol.

"They knew what to do, they know how to control an industry retailing regulated substances ... and that's what they did," said James Burns, CEO of Alcanna Inc., which has Nova Cannabis stores in Alberta and Ontario.

In B.C., long known for the quality of its namesake bud, sales remain relatively low, even though the network of stores in the province has grown in recent months. British Columbians have bought just $25-million worth of legal cannabis since legalization, less than the far smaller provinces of New Brunswick and Saskatchewan, at $29.3-million and $44.5-million, respectively.

For retailers lucky enough to open a store in Ontario, the slow rollout has been a boon.

Alcanna signed a licence agreement with a lottery winner who opened a store in downtown Toronto. The Queen Street store is averaging $450,000 in sales a week, more than double its busiest stores in Edmonton and more than six or seven times the average store, Alcanna's Mr. Burns said.

But some retailers are anticipating the province will widen access to cannabis licences down the line and are willing to wait rather than strike pricey deals with the latest lottery winners.

Trevor Fencott, CEO of Fire and Flower Inc., said the cannabis retailer had been fielding calls from some of Ontario's second lottery winners, who have been granted the right to apply for a retail licence.

In order to partner with them, they were asking between $4-million and $8-million, which was "completely unreasonable," he said.

Fire and Flower partnered with two winners during the first lottery, but Mr. Fencott doesn't think the steep premium is worth it since he expects the Ontario government to open up the system, eventually.

"You do need, fundamentally, to get to thousands of stores to compete, and monetize the black market," Mr. Fencott said. "If you don't have that, then you're just leaving tax money on the table."

Ms. Roach is hopeful she can hold on till Ontario's private retail licensing process opens up. Facilitating access to legal cannabis is key to getting existing users to switch from the illicit market, the main goal of legalization, she said.

"The point of legalization is to get the consumers to convert to the legal market, and if there isn't an easy point of access ... then legalization will not necessarily fail but it won't serve its purpose, which is getting rid of the black market."

NBA faces wrath of China, and its people
Beijing's anger over basketball executive's social-media post pits patriotic fervour against brand loyalty
Thursday, October 10, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B1

BEIJING -- China's hostile reaction to an NBA executive's tweet in support of anti-government protesters in Hong Kong has opened a window into the potency of nationalistic sentiment in the country, where consumers and sports fans have demonstrated a willingness to turn on brands for love of country.

It's a reflection of shifts among the Chinese population, with far-reaching consequences for the stability of foreign businesses in the world's secondlargest economy, where the government demands that companies censor their public statements if they intend to operate inside its borders.

The NBA is so popular in China that it has sold broadcast rights for 10-figure sums. Last season, online partner Tencent counted more than 500 million viewers for streamed games.

Shanghai-born Yao Ming, a former Houston Rockets star, is a national hero.

The size and dedication of the NBA's following in China, however, has been little match for the patriotic fervour in a country whose leadership has stoked nationalism amid a slowing economy and fraying relations with countries such as the United States.

On Wednesday, the state-run China Daily published an editorial that lashed out at NBA commissioner Adam Silver for upholding the league's commitment to free speech, just days after Houston Rockets general manager Daryl Morey tweeted - then deleted - an image supporting prodemocracy protesters in Hong Kong.

By "brazenly endorsing Morey's secessionist-supporting tweet," Mr. Silver has unleashed "Chinese people's anger at such displays of thoughtless prejudice," the newspaper wrote.

China's state-run CCTV has suspended broadcasts of preseason games in China this week, saying "any speech that challenges national sovereignty and social stability is not within the scope of freedom of speech." Tencent also said it will not provide Chinese viewers access to Rockets content.

Even five years ago, such a ban on popular programming would have proven dangerous for China's leadership, given its potential to backfire.

After authorities cut mainland access to Instagram in 2014 in the midst of protests in Hong Kong, researchers estimated that more than eight million people in China turned to censorship-evasion software such as virtual private networks, or VPNs, to continue using the photo-sharing socialmedia network. Some of those users then began digging into other content that would otherwise be blocked, including political criticism of China.

"By motivating more people to acquire the ability to evade censorship, a sudden increase in censorship can erode its own effectiveness, can politicize previously apolitical citizens and can accumulate collective action potential that it often seeks to suppress," concluded the researchers, scholars at Northeastern University and the University of California, San Diego.

With the NBA, too, it's likely people "will find other ways" to watch, one Chinese basketball expert said in an interview. The Globe and Mail is not revealing his identity because of the political sensitivity of the matter. "If you can't get it through legal platforms, with technology nowadays you can do a lot of things."

But, he said, Mr. Morey's Hong Kong tweet landed at a particularly sensitive time, after the Oct. 1 celebrations of the 70th anniversary of the People's Republic of China. "Almost everybody is showing their patriotic thing," he said.

As a result, there are now basketball fans "willing to stop watching."

Indeed, statistics maintained by App Annie show no change in Chinese VPN downloads this week.

For China's Communist Party leadership, the risk "is that millions of NBA fans are enraged they can't easily watch their favourite game," said Jeremy Goldkorn, a former director of media and internet consultancy Danwei who is now editor-in-chief of

But, he added, "the mood of nationalism seems to be so strong in China right now, perhaps they have nothing to fear." The NBA's troubles in China began with a consumer backlash rather than official opprobrium, said China Market Research Group founder Shaun Rein.

"This is genuine. People are angry," he said. "The Chinese consumer has become exceptionally patriotic after the U.S.-China trade war. The NBA will not win."

Mr. Rein has in the past been criticized for a proBeijing stand. But what he sees today "scares the hell" out of him. "That's why I've been thinking of moving to Canada or New Zealand." For foreign businesses contemplating expansion to China, his advice is stark: "You need to think two, three, four, five times about whether or not it makes sense."

Several international brands have fallen afoul of China over perceptions they have sanctioned support of the Hong Kong protesters. Hong Kong flag carrier Cathay Pacific has fired pilots, flight attendants and its chief executive. Video-game giant Blizzard booted a high-profile gamer. And, on Wednesday, Apple incurred the wrath of the People's Daily for allowing people in Hong Kong to download a mapping app used by protesters to identify the location of police. "Apple has to think about the consequences of its unwise and reckless decision," the paper wrote.

The NBA, too, has discovered plenty of hurt feelings. The Globe interviewed the administrators of three NBA-related accounts on the Twitter-like Weibo service, who together count almost four million followers.

"My identity as Chinese is more important than my identity as a basketball fan," said Alex Wang, who counts 1.4 million followers on Weibo, which posts basketball videos. Without an apology from the NBA, "I won't post any more NBA-related videos," she said.

The ill will extends beyond China's borders. "For the moment I will not watch any NBA games. And I think many others are the same," said J. Deng, the U.S.-based administrator of another Weibo account with almost two million followers.

The NBA has backed Mr. Morey's right to speak his mind, with Mr. Silver saying this week: "As a league, we are not willing to compromise those values."

Chinese celebrities and sponsors have responded by abandoning the league, while the country's online shopping giants have been scrubbed of Rockets gear.

On Wednesday, the Shanghai Sports Federation cancelled an NBA fan event.

"It will be hard to ease tensions," said Chen Jing, a well-known social-media personality with half a million Weibo followers. "It seems likely that if the public opinion battle between China and the U.S. continues to grow sharper, the NBA will face another period of historical shutdown in China."

The NBA's struggles are confirmation of the stark new calculus that must be confronted by anyone doing business with China.

The Chinese Communist Party's goal is conformity with its priorities - and it "has the wherewithal these days to go pretty far in controlling that message," said William Zarit, a Beijing-based senior counsellor with the Cohen Group, a strategic advisory firm. That means Beijing generally demands that those with operations inside its borders keep to themselves opinions it and the Chinese people might find offensive.

"So companies have to make that decision," Mr. Zarit said. "If they want to be in China, they have to understand the rules of the game in China."

With reporting by Alexandra Li

Associated Graphic

A worker in Shanghai removes an NBA banner from a building ahead of Thursday's game between the Brooklyn Nets and Los Angeles Lakers.


Duke of Edmonton right at home in Buffalo
Bills receiver Williams says time in the CFL helped him rekindle his love for playing football
Friday, October 18, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B21

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. -- D'haquille (Duke) Williams says he's forever grateful to the CFL and the Edmonton Eskimos.

The 6-foot-3, 225-pound receiver will make his second NFL start Sunday when Buffalo (4-1) plays host to the Miami Dolphins (0-5).

After opening the season on the practice roster, Williams replaced Zay Jones in the starting lineup in Buffalo's most recent game and his seven-yard TD grab in the fourth quarter earned the visiting Bills a 14-7 victory over the Tennessee Titans, on Oct. 6.

That's helped make Williams a favourite with Buffalo fans, affectionately dubbed Bills Mafia. The many who made the trip to Nashville could be heard yelling "Duuuuuke" after Williams hauled in the TD pass from Josh Allen.

But the 26-year-old Los Angeles native said he wouldn't be in the NFL if not for the CFL.

"I lost my game in 2016, I didn't really want to play any more," Williams said after Wednesday's practice. "Without those two years [2017 and 2018 in Edmonton], I probably wouldn't be where I'm at today.

"It actually helped me find myself, love the game again and taught me a lot about myself in terms of character. I made brothers [in Edmonton].

Williams was regarded as a potential NFL first-round pick before being dismissed from Auburn during his senior year in 2015 for breaking a teammate's jaw during a bar fight. After going undrafted, Williams joined the L.A. Rams but was eventually released.

"I went to camp because they [the Rams] invited me," Williams said. "I didn't want to be there.

"Once I got cut I wasn't even mad. I was just like, 'Man, I'm going home. I don't want to play any more.' " But Williams said that all changed after accepting a tryout offer from Edmonton. He led the CFL in receiving last season - 88 catches, 1,579 yards, 11 TDs - then signed in January with Buffalo.

Williams wasn't upset to start the year on the practice roster.

"There was nothing to get mad about because at the end of the day I still had a job," he said. "I just looked at it as, 'Let me go out here and do what I can to help our team.' I came to practice every day as if I was playing and tried my best to get a defensive look, to get a scout-team or special-teams look. That was my job and I was going to do it 100 per cent."

Bills offensive co-ordinator Brian Daboll, a native of Welland, Ont., said Williams earned his promotion to the active roster.

"He came out and worked every day when he was on the practice squad," Daboll said. "He got better, he knew the game-plan and those are always the guys that you bring in-house to give an opportunity to when they earn it."

Daboll said Williams's story makes it easy for people to root for him. "He's come up the hard way I'd say," Daboll said. "He's got a very good perspective, he's a tough-minded individual.

"It was one game. He made a few nice plays for us. We've got a long way to go with him, but he's a good part of our team."

Williams had four catches for 29 yards in his Buffalo debut. The Bills were so impressed they dealt Jones, a former second-round pick, to Oakland for a 2021 fifthround selection last week.

Veteran linebacker Lorenzo Alexander can appreciate the path Williams has taken to Buffalo. The 36-year-old began his NFL career as an undrafted player with Carolina in 2005 and the Bills are the sixth team he's played for professionally.

"The way Duke shows up to work every day, the way he works and pays attention to detail, it's not surprising why he's here," Alexander said. "He has been able to share his story and once you get into the mind of Duke and really understand how he's built, it makes sense.

"Every day, whether it's at practice, games, walk-through or even shooting hoops in here, he's competitive. That's what's allowed him to rise up and seize this moment."

Williams certainly left his mark in Edmonton.

"He's one of my favourite players I've coached," Edmonton head coach Jason Maas said. "We knew he had all the physical abilities in the world ... it was just a matter of him accepting his role up here, working on his craft and becoming a professional."

Toronto Argonauts receiver Derel Walker, a former teammate of Williams in Edmonton, said the NFL rookie's story is inspiring.

"When you listen to the obstacles he went through just to get to where he is now, I've got nothing but love for him," Walker said. "We all have our own stories. The sky is the limit for him. I just want to see him do whatever it is he wants to do with his career and life."

The colourful Williams helped the CFL revise its TD celebration standard. Last season, he was flagged for objectionable conduct after crawling through an advertising placard following a TD catch. The previous night, Winnipeg receiver Darvin Adams wasn't penalized for taking a TV camera from a nearby cameraman and filming his teammates to celebrate a touchdown reception.

The CFL responded by allowing players to use props during celebrations so long as they weren't hidden in the uniform or goal post, considered demeaning or discriminatory or meant to simulate the firing of a weapon. Under that standard, Williams wouldn't have been penalized.

"There was never a dull moment," Walker said with a chuckle. "As you saw with [his] celebrations, he was always going to come up with some of the best.

"He's a character. He's going to bring that energy. He's one of those guys who's going to make that noise and come to play every week."

Williams was also a physical presence. In October, 2018, against B.C., video of Williams steamrolling a Lions defensive back who dared challenge him at the line of scrimmage went viral.

Williams also credits the CFL for teaching him the nuances of pro football. "The game isn't fast to me right now," he said. "I played pro ball those two years and so I already know what to expect. I don't have to think a lot, I don't have to rush anything. I can just play my game."

Although he's an NFL starter, Williams isn't resting on his laurels. "I've got a long way to go to prove to these coaches that I want to be here," he said. "I will continue to get better, watch film, critique myself on my game.

"By the time the playoffs hit, I should be at my best ... and as long as I'm at my best, I'll be all right."

Associated Graphic

Duke Williams hauls in the decisive TD pass in Buffalo's 14-7 win over the Titans in Nashville on Oct. 6. The play made him a favourite with the Bills Mafia.


Worried Canadians urged Garneau to halt Max jet
Friday, October 18, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A1

Canadians bombarded federal Transport Minister Marc Garneau in March with concerns over the Boeing 737 Max after a second deadly crash, expressing fear and panic about flying on the new plane and, in some cases, begging Ottawa to halt flights in Canada so their loved ones would not have to travel on it.

"There is no option to change flights. ... We are sick with worry about flying on this plane," wrote one family to Mr. Garneau in more than 360 pages of e-mails to the minister after the crash of an Ethiopian Airlines 737 Max. The e-mails were obtained by The Globe and Mail under Access to Information legislation.

The documents also indicate that Mr. Garneau and his staff did not consider the issue a top priority in the immediate aftermath of the crash on the morning of Sunday, March 10. That afternoon, Mr. Garneau sent an e-mail to his advisers requesting an update on the Ethiopian situation the following morning, so that he could address the media on Monday. The e-mail suggests that the focus of department meetings would be on the formulation of Air Passenger Protection Regulations.

The APPR are new rules aimed at compensating consumers for delays, lost baggage and cancellations Deputy minister Michael Keenan agreed, responding to Mr.Garneau: "Fully support the idea of spending our time on APPR. It is the biggest item we have tomorrow."

It's not clear what was ultimately discussed at the meetings.

Mr. Garneau could not be reached for comment, and a spokesman said he was unavailable owing to the election campaign.

The outpouring of concern from worried travellers came as Mr. Garneau initially hesitated for several days to ground the plane, despite dozens of countries around the world moving quickly to stop all 737 Max flights after the Ethiopia crash raised serious questions about its design. The disaster, which killed all 157 people aboard - including 18 Canadians - was the second Max crash in less than 5 months, and was similar to a previous one in Indonesia.

As much of the world moved to ban the 737 Max from flying soon after the Ethiopia crash, Canada and the United States were left as conspicuous outliers, and travellers appeared to grow more agitated. When Mr. Garneau said publicly on March 11 that it was "premature" to ground all Max planes in Canada before the problem was known, it prompted a wave of concerned e-mails, as did the minister's assertion that he would "without hesitation" fly aboard one of the planes.

"Mr. Garneau, it is shameful that you have failed to act to suspend all Canadian flights of this plane, pending absolute and complete confirmation of its safety.

This is way too critical a safety issue to assume 'innocent until proven guilty,' rather some action and a real decision is required here. Please ban this plane," said one e-mail to the minister.

"These are possible Canadian lives we are talking about," said another. "The rest of the world can't all be wrong." Under privacy laws, the names of the people were redacted, along with other identifying information.

Several people asked Mr. Garneau if he and his counterparts in the United States were working with different information on the Max than governments in Europe, Asia and the Middle East, which acted swiftly to ground the plane. Others wrote to express fear for loved ones booked on flights in Canada.

A parent whose son was set to fly on a 737 Max pleaded with the minister to follow the direction of those other governments, telling Mr. Garneau that the airline wouldn't let them switch to a different plane. "As parents, we are losing sleep over the decision to cancel or not due to the aircraft. ... Canadians like our family need you to exercise your mandate to keep us safe and not place us at the mercy of 'consumer decisions' when there is quite possibly a fatal flaw plaguing these aircraft, which will likely not be remedied in the next several days."

Another traveller wondered why Canada had more confidence than other governments: "I am feeling fearful about taking this flight. I just wanted to know what additional information [Mr. Garneau] has that is making us so confident of the safety of this aircraft?" Mr. Garneau eventually grounded the 737 Max in Canada on March 13. The tragedy was the second of its kind, after a Lion Air flight crashed in Indonesia on Oct. 29 last year, killing all 189 people. Both incidents were similar, occurring minutes after takeoff, with each plane losing altitude quickly before crashing nose down. Subsequent investigations have pegged the problem on the plane's automatic stabilization system, known as the MCAS.

When fed incorrect data from a faulty sensor, the MCAS forced the plane into a dive that the crew failed to override.

In announcing the eventual grounding three days after the Ethiopia crash, Mr. Garneau said the government reviewed satellite tracking data showing similarities of the flight paths of the two planes, which led to the decision. The United States also grounded the 737 Max that same day.

"It's not conclusive, but it is something that points possibly in that direction, and at this point we feel that that threshold has been crossed," Mr. Garneau said in March. "And that is why we're taking these measures."

Several of the e-mails sent to Mr. Garneau in the days before he decided to ground the Max, though, questioned whether Ottawa was putting airline economics ahead of safety, given the amount of money the industry stood to lose.

"I do hope that economic considerations are not being taken into account. Forcing Canadians to fly on these aircraft at this time is, in my humble opinion, inappropriate. I would rather see my country take a 'better safe than sorry' approach to this situation, as the majority of other countries flying the Max 8 have," one person wrote.

"I for one would rather be inconvenienced than dead," said another. "Economic [concerns] of the airlines is not a valid consideration."

Some people responded with anger at the decision not to ground the planes immediately.

"In my opinion, your failure to ground the 737 Max 8 aircraft before an official cause is released for the recent crash is careless, irresponsible and unconscionable," wrote one person.

Although Mr. Garneau could not be reached for comment, Transport Canada said in an emailed statement to The Globe that the department "makes evidence-based decisions to prioritize safety, and does not hesitate to take action - including on a precautionary basis - when safety issues are identified."

The statement added: "Transport Canada will not lift the current flight restriction of the Boeing 737 MAX 8 until it is fully satisfied that all concerns have been addressed by the manufacturer and the U.S. FAA [Federal Aviation Administration], and that adequate flight crew procedures and training are in place."

Associated Graphic

A Boeing 737 Max 8 prepares to land at Pearson International Airport in Toronto on March 12, a day before the jets were grounded in Canada. After the Ethiopia crash on March 10, much of the world immediately banned the plane from flying, but Canada and the United States waited longer to do so.


'It's not a fad': Women playing key roles across the NBA
This season, there are women affecting every aspect of the league - including a record 11 female assistant coaches
Friday, October 18, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B16

Practice is over and Boston Celtics assistant coach Kara Lawson is still working.

She stands under the basket rebounding, giving feedback to rookie guard Carsen Edwards as he shoots from different spots on the court. After swishing his final three attempts, he jogs over to her.

"Thanks coach," Edwards says before exchanging a high-five with Lawson.

Welcome to the new-look NBA, in which women are affecting every aspect of the game - from broadcasting booths, officiating, coaching on the sidelines, frontoffice executives to ownership.

Lawson is one of a record 11 women serving as assistant coaches in the NBA this season.

Former WNBA star Swin Cash, along with Seattle Storm star Sue Bird, are working in NBA front offices.

"It's not a fad," said Basketball Hall of Famer Nancy Lieberman.

"It's opportunities going to very accomplished women who have given their life to the game."

While it may not be a fad, it is a recent trend. Lieberman remembers a time when the presence of women was hard to spot or at best found only behind the scenes.

The 61-year-old - who has broken barriers as a player, a coach in the WNBA, head coach in NBA G League and assistant in the NBA - learned quickly that building relationships was key to erasing gender hurdles and opening opportunities in the league. That, along with an occasional assist from forward thinking men such as former coach Don Nelson, who in 2009 hired her as the head coach of the Texas Legends, the Dallas Mavericks' G League affiliate.

Several have continued Nelson's vision, including San Antonio Spurs Gregg Popovich, who made Becky Hammon the NBA's first full-time assistant in 2014; current Mavericks' coach Rick Carlisle hired Jenny Boucek as an assistant in 2017; and the Sacramento Kings hired three women as assistants (Lieberman, Boucek and Lindsey Harding).

The BIG3, spearheaded by founder and entertainer Ice Cube, is helping to normalize the idea of women leading men, Lieberman said.

"I remember Donnie did an interview and he said, 'Maybe the best man for the job isn't a man at all.' He had a list of criteria he wanted to hit for his head coach.

And I hit those," Lieberman said.

The women garner respect from players for their experience and basketball knowledge.

Celtics guard Gordon Hayward said Lawson, a former star at Tennessee and in the WNBA, has already made her presence felt.

"She's been good as far as just the experience she has as a basketball player," Hayward said.

"Reading the game and kind of little things she sees coaching on the sideline. Having somebody that well versed in basketball, that experience is good."

Wizards assistant Kristi Toliver helped the Washington Mystics win their first WNBA championship this month. On the sideline, Washington NBA all-stars John Wall and Bradley Beal were wearing the Wizard assistant's WNBA jersey and dancing from the stands. "The biggest thing I learned is to share your voice and what you've learned," Toliver said. "Doing that has helped me communicate with my guys." Toliver is in a unique salary situation since she coaches for the Wizards and plays for the Mystics - both owned by same franchise.

She was only paid about US$10,000 with the Wizards last year because of WNBA salary cap rules. WNBA teams can only pay all their players a combined US$50,000 in the off-season to supplement pay and Washington only had US$10,000 left to pay Toliver.

There are no such hiccups in New Orleans, where Pelicans guard Frank Jackson said he always expected to benefit from Cash, a senior executive, and Naismith Hall of Famer Teresa Weatherspoon, who was recently hired as an assistant this season.

Cash won two NCAA titles at Connecticut in 2000 and 2002 and finished her 15-year WNBA career at the New York Liberty, where she became an executive. Weatherspoon won an NCAA title at Louisiana Tech in 1988 and was the demanding star point guard in the first seven seasons for Liberty from 1997-2003. She spent the past five years as the Liberty director of player development.

"They were ballers," Jackson said. "They were good at their craft and I've taken a lot from both of them. ... I've always had open eyes and open ears to anyone who plays this game." The 21-year-old Jackson knows of the women's talents because he has witnessed them firsthand.

And he is not alone. The WNBA has been around since most players were teenagers or younger, starting its first season in 1997.

"As the years go on, they're going to get more and more recognition," said Jackson, in his third year out of Duke. "Girls can hoop, too. ... I just think as times change, you'll see more and more."

Bird joined the front office of the Denver Nuggets as an operations associate last year. Cash says she believes the NBA is realizing more women on staff is important to growing the league's overall brand, business and bottom line.

"The reality is - and the statistics prove it - is that having women included in your business helps you get more inclusion, helps you get the diversity you need," she said. "Diversity of thought, not just black, white, Asian, Latino, whatever."

Stephanie Ready, a former assistant in the then D-League, said a big factor in the opportunities for women comes from the younger generation of NBA executives, such as 76ers general manager Elton Brand. She said the new crop of hiring managers do a better job of recognizing what women bring to the table.

"Some people will age out," said Ready, who was among the first women hired as an assistant coach for a men's team at Coppin State, a former broadcaster with the Charlotte Hornets and now covers the NBA for TNT and Yahoo. "By that I mean the old regime of men who thought that only men could do these jobs."

Richard Lapchick, who tracks racial and gender hiring numbers for the NBA, NFL, NHL and MLB, has long lauded the NBA as a leader in gender hiring practices. He credits the leadership of NBA commissioner Adam Silver, who said the league needed to increase the number of female coaches and referees in the NBA.

Along with the record number of female assistants, five female referees will be working NBA games this season. Lapchick also believes the NBA will soon have its first female head coach.

Whether that is Hammon in San Antonio remains to be seen. But whoever it is, Lapchick said the move would go a long way in putting even more women in position to make basketball decisions.

"I'd be surprised if it doesn't happen before the next season," he said, "or during the next season."

Associated Graphic

Hall of Famer Nancy Lieberman, right, seen in Miami in August, remembers a time when women in the NBA were hard to spot, or, at best, found only behind the scenes. Now, women such as Celtics assistant coach Kara Lawson, left, seen in Boston in July, are working throughout the league.


Smooth sailing: How to ace Thanksgiving
Sometimes, family gatherings bring out the worst in people, but experts suggest ways to tackle any problem that should arise, so the holidays can be peaceful for everyone
Tuesday, October 8, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A13

Like any holiday that brings farflung family members into close proximity for extended periods of time, Thanksgiving can be a fraught and imperfect occasion, despite our best efforts. Old grudges simmer quietly between relatives, wine flows too quickly, extroverts dominate the room and conversations veer into dangerous political territory (Trump, Trudeau, #MeToo, climate change, and on and on). Meltdowns happen, with no child or adult spared.

This Thanksgiving, experts from various fields offer their best practices for getting through dinner unscathed - from an apology ace who walks people through testy family reunions, to a skilled debater adept at arguing without rage, to a gratitude guru on feeling this emotion more deeply, in the moment, over stuffing.

Above all else, the experts remind, you're here to share a meal, not dissect your dysfunctional family (that you can do later, at home).

THE INTROVERTS AT YOUR TABLE Marsha Pinto, creator of Softest Voices, an organization that helps introverted youth, said people bring vastly different conversational styles to the family table. Extroverts tell stories and introverts listen; both skills are valuable.

"With this highly social holiday, remember that each person shares themselves socially in different way," said Pinto, who is from Markham, Ont. "If not for the introverts, the extroverts would have no one to listen to them. If not for the extroverts, it would be a rather quiet Thanksgiving dinner."

Pinto said she's had many quieter children and teenagers write to her complaining they feel pressed by parents to speak eloquently at family gatherings. "Just because a kid is quiet, it doesn't mean they have nothing to say or know nothing," Pinto said. "It means they are thinking of what to say and absorbing what is said by others."

Pinto suggested families not put introverted children on the spot in front of distant relatives; instead, engage them in one-on-one conversation away from the more boisterous group.

POLITICS OVER TURKEY As wine is poured and clashing personalities take their place at the table, controversial issues can hijack conversation. Debra Miko, Calgary-based president of the Canadian Student Debating Federation, said the most challenging aspect of debating is understanding where others are coming from, even if you vehemently disagree with their world view.

"Remember that a 25-year-old will have different values and priorities than grandma or grandpa," Miko said.

Resist the urge to get personal. Instead, listen closely and then query, Miko said.

"Be open to exploring issues rather than trying to force family and friends to agree with you," she said.

"Try, 'It's interesting that you saw it from that perspective - not quite the way I had interpreted it. Can you elaborate?' " If you happen to be wrong, take the high road. "It's okay to lose an argument," Miko said. "My son, a former high-school Team Canada debating member used to tell me, 'A loss is a learn.' " QUELLING TABLE-SIDE ERUPTIONS Discord is often unavoidable at sizable family gatherings, although what you do with it is up to you, according to Darcy Pennock, Edmonton-based director of Verbal Judo Canada, which provides conflictmanagement training for government, corporations and law-enforcement agencies.

Start by taking a breath, Pennock said.

"Whether something is slowly building or appears to erupt spontaneously, take some deep yoga breaths that slow your heart rate and prevent your body from being 'high-jacked' by your emotions."

Although it may seem hard to tap into in the heat of the moment, empathy is the fastest peacemaker. "Empathy is essential for absorbing tension and calming people down," Pennock said.

He recommends modifying one's "delivery style" so it relays compassion, not combativeness. "A concerned, listening look on your face and open, non-threatening body language sends the right message," Pennock said. "Acknowledge their emotions with phrases such as, 'I can see you're frustrated.' Follow this with openended questions. These techniques help us strengthen relationships during times of conflict, not destroy them."

Pennock recalled one family gathering at which he pacified 89-year-old Grandma Betty. Pennock's nephew was lamenting how little free time he and his wife have amid hockey practice for their two children. Grandma Betty shot back with: "You spoil your kids. We never ran around with our kids like parents do today." Uncomfortable silence ensued, so Pennock took a deep breath and interjected, not with a rebuke but with grace. He raised his own years playing hockey as a boy: What he remembered most was Grandma Betty or his father watching from the stands. "The conversation shifted to happy hockey memories," Pennock said, and Grandma Betty's parenting insult was diffused.

BEYOND SORRY, NOT SORRY Every family has its sore spots. For feuding relatives who bristle at the thought of being in close quarters this Thanksgiving, the time to try and resolve matters is now, not in real time, urged Jennifer Thomas, a psychologist who co-authored the book When Sorry Isn't Enough: Making Things Right With Those You Love with Gary Chapman.

"Around the family meal (or even off in another room during the gathering) is not the time to hammer out situations that caused hurt feelings in the past," Thomas said. "It's really something that should be done a week or a month before the holiday. You're going to be together for the whole day."

Thomas recommended reaching out in person or over the phone; this conveys more commitment than a text or e-mail.

Then, use the holiday meal as an opportunity to repair trust.

"Go in with a mindset of giving compliments. Tell the host, 'I think you're really great at making people feel welcome.

Thank you for having us over,' "Thomas said.

"Offering to help out can also help rebuild relationships and show that we're willing to roll up our shirt sleeves and make it easier for them. It also can be a way of keeping us busy so that we don't reach for the alcohol, which can be a landmine, or get into arguments."

THE GRATITUDE PUSH Gratitude is the order of the day at Thanksgiving. But kitchen pandemonium, testy adults and children running underfoot can make it nearly impossible to summon authentic gratitude. Amid the chaos, rituals of giving thanks around the table can feel forced and abrupt, said Diana Butler Bass, author of the 2018 book Grateful: The Subversive Practice of Giving Thanks.

"People pressure themselves by insisting that family members or guests recite what they are thankful for in advance of the meal," Bass said.

"Although well intended, it sometimes feels more like a turkey hostage situation than genuine gratitude."

Bass offers a depressurized alternative to traditional, around-the-table thanks.

"Well before you begin eating, ask guests to write what they are thankful for on slips of paper and place those slips in a 'gratitude jar' on the table. Throughout the meal, when conversation lags or between courses, have different people pull a slip out and read it aloud to the group," Bass said.

"It's a nice way to keep one extroverted guest from monopolizing conversation, involve children in a gratitude practice and spread thanks across dinner."

Associated Graphic


How do our brains fall for disinformation?
False content has been an issue for decades, but it has reached new heights with the rise of social media
Monday, October 14, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A10

As Canadians face a barrage of election campaign media coverage, researchers probing the minds of people who share bogus headlines online are asking: How do we fall for false information?

As cognitive psychologist Gordon Pennycook, of the University of Regina, and co-author David Rand pointed out in a 2018 paper in the journal Cognition, the phenomenon of fake news - the spread of patently false stories - is nothing new; tabloid magazines, known for publishing stories of alien abductions and Elvis sightings, have been around since the beginning of the 20th century. But the phenomenon seems to have reached new heights with the rise of social media, they wrote, prompting scientists to investigate the cognitive and psychological processes involved when people get duped.

Part of the reason people fall for false content lies in the way our brains take in information, says neurologist Lesley Fellows, a professor at McGill University who has studied how the brain makes political decisions. Our brains are constantly and heavily filtering the world around us through a framework of biases and stereotypes created through our experiences.

"It's a general feature of the brain. It can't possibly cope in fact with all the information out there, so we use our prior experience to filter the information in," she said, noting this function explains how optical illusions work: "The brain imagines how things ought to be and it takes the information that fits with that [assumption]."

Although this helps us efficiently navigate through life, it can also make us vulnerable to half-truths - or distortions of the truth.

Having an entrenched worldview, shaped by decades of experience, may be one reason older people tend to be more likely to share false information, said Jay Van Bavel, an associate professor of psychology and neural science at New York University.

Van Bavel said that people older than 65 are six to seven times more likely to share fake news than their younger counterparts.

He is currently conducting a brain imaging study to investigate why.

Many have watched the same news station for decades and thus see the world in a certain way, he explained, adding they also tend to be more committed to a specific political party. This could partly explain why they may be more inclined to share a factually inaccurate story through social media if it aligns with how they see the world.

Another reason may be related to cognitive decline, he suggested, saying that older people are more susceptible to fraud of all kinds.

Whatever the reason, it's important to note that older people vote at a much higher rate than younger people, he said.

"When fake news is targeting them and they're more susceptible to it, that's actually much more of a problem for society," he said.

In addition to the cognitive processes at play, there are also psychological and emotional layers to why people fall for bad information, Fellows said. In other words, it can be harder or easier for you to believe in certain stories depending on how they affect you emotionally and psychologically.

She explained that people sometimes reject information that, if accepted as true, would be very frightening or uncomfortable. Take climate change, for example: It is more convenient to deny than to accept climate change, she said, because if you believe climate change is not real, you will not be forced to take action or think of the terrible consequences.

"It's psychologically easier to cling to the information that suggests it's not really a problem," Fellows said.

Emotion also plays a big role in how false information is shared through social media. Van Bavel's research shows that on Twitter each so-called "moral emotional" word used, such as "disgust" or "hate," corresponds with a 20-percent increase in the likelihood of that message being retweeted.

(Such words differ from words such as "sadness" or "happiness," which merely convey emotion, not morality, or "fair" and "just," which convey moral principles but not rich emotions, Van Bavel explained.)

"Emotion is a powerful motivator," he said, explaining that people are more likely to act in response to information that triggers strong emotions versus information that appeals to their logic.

The context in which people consume information is also a factor, he said. Most people use logic when they are listening to a lecture in a university class, for example.

By contrast, "when people are engaging in social media, which is now how most people get news ... they're not often engaging deeply with the rational content of the news. They're not looking at graphs and figures and thinking about it for a long time. They're reacting to headlines, captions, brief video clips, images. Those are the types of things that are going to resonate with us emotionally."

There are concerns that information from unreliable sources may influence voters' views about individual candidates and hotbutton campaign issues such as immigration and climate change.

Canadian leaders and security experts have repeatedly warned of the potential for foreign actors to meddle with the election through the spread of false information.

According to a research report by the Digital Democracy Project, led by the Public Policy Forum and McGill University's Max Bell School of Public Policy, the overall level of misinformation appears to be quite low among the Canadian public.

Nevertheless, it stated, "In general, it appears that simply consuming news, regardless of source, makes people susceptible to being misinformed about the issues."

People's social circles not only determine what pops up on their news feeds, they also have significant influence over how individuals respond to false information.

For instance, one may be more inclined to believe a story if it has been shared by someone with similar views.

Van Bavel, however, found that there appears to be a hierarchy to our loyalties. Our alliance with a particular person or party seems to outrank our loyalty to the common ideology we share with others. U.S. President Donald Trump and his followers often demonstrate this concept, he explained: If Mr. Trump were to make an argument against free trade, the average person who voted for him is likely to believe that argument and share it, even though it goes against decades of U.S. conservative economic policy.

"They're looking for: Is this person part of my team? If so, then I'm more likely to believe it, even if it contradicts the values of the ideology," he said.

But just as one's community can promote bad information, it can also keep it in check. Van Bavel admitted he is not immune to spreading false information. He once shared a quote about lies travelling around the world while truth is still putting on its pants that was falsely attributed to Mark Twain. Soon after, members of his online community, consisting mostly of fellow scientists, pointed out there is no evidence the author ever made such a statement. He immediately factchecked it and removed his post.

"Norms matter a lot," he said.

"Fake news flourishes when certain people think it's acceptable to share it and [are] rewarded for sharing it."

Associated Graphic


An unflinching look at the #MeToo era
The Globe's Doolittle is tough, but balanced in her exploration of how we handle sexual-assault cases
Special to The Globe and Mail
Saturday, October 12, 2019 – Print Edition, Page R14

Had It Coming - What's Fair in the Age of #MeToo?


Every year new zeitgeist-y words are added to the dictionary - recently it was the Bechdel Test - but in 2019, I wish we could take some words out, specifically "nuance," a word that seems to have lost its meaning from sheer overuse. When used in marketing copy for book promotion, the word nuanced is meant to soothe the average reader and signal that the book is not a polemic. It's no surprise that its overuse is happening during an epidemic of journalistic both-sides-ism, and a time when books about the whirlwind #MeToo era are proliferating.

So when I read it on the jacket copy of Had It Coming: What's Fair in the Age of #MeToo, the excellent new book by reporter Robyn Doolittle, my heart sank a little. Was it going to suffer from a wateringdown of the issues, or build on the groundbreaking work she accomplished with the Unfounded investigative series, some of the most read stories in The Globe and Mail's history, which created real administrative change in police departments across Canada?

Luckily, the jacket also promises it will be "informed" and that's exactly what it is - how is it that Canada has the most progressive sexual-assault laws on the books, but so few people with power understand it or use it properly?

Doolittle writes in the introduction that it would be cathartic to write a book about why women are feeling such fury in the wake of #MeToo, but "it's been done."

It's true that literary treatises by Rebecca Solnit or Rebecca Traister and others have that ground well covered. And it's also true that perhaps readers want fewer confessions or emotions, and more solutions or in-depth explorations. Doolittle explains that she won't shy away from the "tough questions" and offers us a glimpse of what women really say when they're talking to their friends.

Looming over the introduction is the spectre of woke Twitter and cancel-culture, which is a false set-up, given that there are few actual consequences for strangers being momentarily mad at you on social media - I've lived it; it's humbling, but hardly the end of the world. The systems of power are still very much the same no matter how uncomfortable you might feel for a social-media misstep. What Doolittle's book does do is take a good hard look at the systems we do have and offer us the undisputed facts about them, and, for that, it's a valuable addition to the canon of #MeToo texts coming out this year. That's just not what the introduction sets us up for.

Doolittle is an excellent reporter. She goes to the experts and then uses the expansive nature of a book to go deeper into the factual material they offer her, and then evaluates how things have and haven't changed post-Weinstein, with a few, carefully-selected and only-when-necessary personal anecdotes peppered in.

The book begins with an admission - one familiar to anyone who was a teenager 15-20 years ago -recounting how after hearing about the Kobe Bryant case, she did not believe the complainant. It's sometimes difficult to remember that when we were the age of the young women spearheading consent culture in 2019, many of us, myself included, were making Monica Lewinsky jokes.

She realizes as an adult how misguided she was and also why this was a common way for women to react - what did Bryant's complainant expect, going to his hotel room? This section's placement at the start of the book is a generational framing that helps us understand where the author comes from, and how her views shifted before and during the writing of the Unfounded report.

The rest of the book contains fewer personal anecdotes and relies more on factual accounts, which is where Doolittle's natural strengths are as a writer.

She asks the important questions and looks at each essay topic from a variety of angles. Some chapters start off looking a bit controversial, such as the one on the Aziz Ansari debacle, a case that seems cleanly split along generational lines; or why the popular "Tea and Consent" PSA (developed by the Thames Valley Police, it explains the concept of consent using the metaphor of offering others a cup of tea) isn't useful or realistic for teens; and the redemption of Justice Robin "couldn't you keep your knees shut" Camp, a federal judge who was removed from the bench for his mishandling of a sexual-assault case. But each section is carefully considered, and offers balanced takes that still use basic feminist principles as their starting point and a given. You may not agree with everything she says, but I'd be surprised if any reader will end a chapter feeling as though she didn't consider and take seriously their point of view.

The Camp chapter, for example, is a stand-out, in part because it is a rare example of someone in power who was willing to look at his own biases and shift his point of view, and a reporter who was willing to push him in the right directions to tell those uncomfortable truths. It makes an interesting companion text to books such as Sarah Schulman's Conflict is Not Abuse, or Kai-Cheng Thom's I Hope We Choose Love, books that ask us to look beyond systems of punishment for answers to how society should deal with abuse.

The chapters I appreciated the most were the ones near the end in which Doolittle examined the feminist generational divide and interviewed both Germaine Greer and Susan Brownmiller, once iconic feminists whose texts are now considered problematic by many on issues of race, sexuality and gender identity. She goes to great lengths to humanize them, despite disagreeing with them on several key points. What's missing, though, are interviews with 2019's Greers and Brownmillers.

She does interview teenagers, but the absence of interviews with say, Jessica Valenti, Lindy West, Roxane Gay, remains a glaring omission, when giving so much space to two leaders in the second-wave feminist movement.

The chapter on the neurobiology of trauma is particularly strong, dealing with how police often discredit complainants who react in ways that don't seem logical. She examines what critics of the neurobiology of trauma say and comes to her own conclusions. Again and again, she takes thorny, divisive issues and lays them plain on the examining table.

The book is emerging in the middle of what The Guardian calls an "unprecedented wave of books" on the #MeToo era. Some won't feel relevant in even two years time, but Had It Coming will because it's a decisive snapshot of this moment in history that considers where we were, and sets the stage for where we might go, and will no doubt be used to describe this moment long after we've moved on to a new normal.

NBA, e-sports stoke worry of China's influence
Western companies have sought to placate Beijing over showings of support for Hong Kong, and the sporting world is fighting back
Friday, October 11, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B15

BEIJING -- Anxiety about China's rising influence has descended upon basketball courts and digital-gaming battlegrounds around the world, dragging sports franchises and millions of fans into a deepening conflict between the West, with its expectations of free speech, and Beijing, with its demands for conformity.

The furious Chinese response to an NBA executive's short-lived tweet in support of pro-democracy protesters in Hong Kong and a similar declaration by a now-suspended video-game player has elevated the global profile of that city's clashes between authoritarianism and democratic rights.

China sees the protesters as anti-government rioters bent on secession and has threatened those with business interests in the country if they offer an alternative view. But in extending that pressure to the sporting world, it has provoked a backlash among people who might not otherwise pay much heed to international affairs.

For most people in Western countries, China has until recently been "like a black smoke monster. You knew it was rising, but its shape was amorphous and nobody really had interest in exploring its essence," said Tom Doctoroff, an advertising executive with two decades of experience in China who is now the chief cultural insights director at Prophet, the global brand and marketing consultancy.

"Now what you have, for the first time, is China touching on elements of popular culture, where it's much easier for people to crystallize the difference between their culture and our culture and what it might represent should a 21st century be dominated by China."

The collision of China's authoritarian dictates with sport and its immense audience has happened on multiple fronts within the span of days. First Houston Rockets general manager Daryl Morey tweeted - then deleted - an image saying, "Fight for freedom, stand with Hong Kong" last Friday.

When NBA commissioner Adam Silver pointedly refused to apologize to soothe anger in China, Chinese sponsors abandoned the NBA, local broadcasters suspended the transmission of some games and state media lashed out.

Days later, online-gaming giant Blizzard Entertainment handed a one-year suspension to Blitzchung, an elite Hong Kong video game player who on Tuesday wore a mask and goggles to a postgame interview and shouted, "Liberate Hong Kong, revolution of our time."

On Wednesday, cable sports channel ESPN added to concerns about U.S. deference to Beijing when it aired a map of China that included the country's ninedashed line, its territorial claim to much of the South China Sea, which few other countries accept.

Now the sporting world is fighting back.

In the United States, fans brought "Free Hong Kong" placards and shirts to an exhibition basketball game Wednesday night between the Washington Wizards and the Guangzhou Loong Lions. The signs were seized by security staff, citing a prohibition on political displays.

The previous day, two fans were booted from a game between Guangzhou and the Philadelphia 76ers for similar signs.

"We're witnessing something here," said Jon Schweppe, director of policy and government affairs at the American Principles Project, who was among those carrying signs at the Wizards game. "I don't think people recognized just how much of an influence on American culture China has - and the Chinese government has."

A similar phenomenon has emerged in electronic-sports arenas, with players and executives around the world speaking out against Chinese pressure after the response by Blizzard, whose parent company boasts 350 million monthly users of some of the world's most popular games, including Call of Duty, Candy Crush, Hearthstone and Overwatch.

In Australia, video-game startup Immutable pledged financial support to Blitzchung - only to be hit by a concerted cyberattack Thursday. In the United States, prominent figures in digital gaming publicly criticized Blizzard, pledging to boycott its games.

"That kind of appeasement is simply not something I can in good conscience be associated with," said Brian Kibler, a popular streamer, in a statement on his website. Tim Sweeney, the founder of Epic Games, a U.S. company that's roughly 40-per-cent owned by China's Tencent, said on Twitter that "Epic supports the rights of Fortnite players and creators to speak about politics and human rights." Fortnite is the company's multibillion-dollar hit game.

In Hong Kong, meanwhile, gamers designed images of Mei, a character in the popular Blizzard game Overwatch, clad in protest gear, hoping to make one of the company's icons a new symbol of protest.

"Finally people around the world, and especially America, are taking notice of the influence of the Chinese government," said Avery Ng, a pro-democracy activist in Hong Kong. "It's time that the American people, as well as American corporations and businesses, really stand up and uphold their core values of freedom."

Sports has historically played an important role in international relations with China. In the early 1970s, Ping-Pong diplomacy was "the beginning of a good relationship between China and the U.S.," said Bo Zhiyue, a specialist in Chinese politics and the director of the XIP Institution, a think tank at Xi'an Jiaotong-Liverpool University.

The dispute over the NBA and e-sports stands to mark a milestone of a very different kind. The circumstances between the two sides are "the opposite," Bo said.

"I'm not sure China has already gotten into this Cold War era yet.

But I think we are moving toward that." He blamed both the United States and China for stoking nationalism, amplifying events in ways that have raised mutual suspicion and inflicted damage to the relationship.

But it is China that stands to lose, said Doctoroff, as widening recognition of Chinese pressure on foreign businesses - including airlines, luxury-fashion labels and Apple, which on Thursday cut access to an app used by Hong Kong protesters - stands to dramatically erode the country's multibillion-dollar efforts to boost its soft power, exacerbating a trend that's already under way.

Public perceptions of China are sliding in North America, Western Europe and parts of Asia, according to a survey released by the Pew Research Center on the eve of the People's Republic of China's Oct. 1 celebration of its 70th anniversary. The worst declines were in Canada and the United States, where 67 per cent and 60 per cent of respondents had unfavourable opinions, the highest in Pew polling history. In the United States, almost half of those polled held favourable views of China as recently as 2017. Now, barely a quarter see it that way.

Then came the NBA and Blizzard.

"This is a teachable moment in Western societies," said Richard McGregor, an author who has written about Chinese elite politics and is now a senior fellow with the Lowy Institute in Australia. "Because Chinese politics, once it spills offshore, looks crude, didactic and coercive to anyone who lives in a democracy."

Associated Graphic

LeBron James of the Los Angeles Lakers goes to the basket against the Brooklyn Nets during a preseason game in Shanghai on Thursday. Sports has played a key role in international relations with China, such as the Ping-Pong diplomacy of the 1970s with the U.S.


MacKay allies mull bid for Conservative leadership
Thursday, October 10, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A1

OTTAWA -- Supporters of former Conservative cabinet minister Peter MacKay are laying the groundwork for a possible leadership bid in the event party leader Andrew Scheer is unable to defeat the Liberals in the Oct. 21 general election.

Veteran Conservative Party insider John Capobianco, a senior vice-president at the public relations and marketing agency FleishmanHillard Inc., confirmed to The Globe and Mail that friends of Mr. MacKay have discussed the possibility he could seek the leadership if Mr. Scheer falters.

Mr. Scheer would face an automatic leadership review in 2020 and senior players in the Conservative Party, to whom The Globe has granted confidentiality to speak about sensitive matters, say he would have difficulty holding on to the top job if he can't lead the party to victory at a time when many loyalists believe Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau is electorally vulnerable.

Mr. Capobianco and other Conservatives reached by The Globe stressed that no one is trying to undercut Mr. Scheer's leadership, and that Mr. MacKay and his supporters are working hard to elect a Conservative government on Oct. 21.

"He has been extremely supportive of Andrew. He has gone to everybody's fundraiser that he has been asked to go to. He has done TV ... so we are all in for Andrew and we all want him to win," Mr. Capobianco said in an interview.

"But if something happens, who knows, but I think Peter would always be someone that people would say: 'Hey look, this guy is not done and gone if there is ever a chance that something might happen down the road.' " Mr. MacKay, who was campaigning with candidates in Montreal when he was reached by phone on Tuesday night, said he is not aware of Conservatives organizing on his behalf.

"No, I'm not [aware], and I'm doing everything I can to help Andrew and support him and his team. I'm not entertaining that at all," he said.

Asked if he has heard from anyone on this issue, he said: "I haven't - not a soul."

Mr. Scheer will release a fully costed platform on Friday in Vancouver. He told reporters on Wednesday the platform will include a path to balancing the books within five years. Economists have suggested his promises to date would lead to a $15-billion deficit in 2024-25.

Mr. Capobianco said he has told people that if Mr. Scheer's party does not form government, they should consider Mr. MacKay as a future leader. Public opinion polls currently show the Conservatives and Liberals in a virtual tie.

"Because it is so tight now, nobody would ever be considering doing anything at this stage," he said. "He [MacKay] would probably be an alternative for sure if there was ever a leadership race. I don't even know if Peter would go in because he has [to talk] to his family, to be honest, but there are a lot of people who would love to have him, but it is so premature from that perspective."

Mr. MacKay, a partner in the Toronto law firm Baker McKenzie, is popular in Conservative circles. He served in the Harper government in justice, defence and foreign affairs from 2006 to 2015.

He was leader of the Progressive Conservative Party until he and Stephen Harper negotiated a merger with the Canadian Alliance in 2003. This led to the formation of the Conservative Party of Canada, ending a decade of vote splitting on the right.

Mr. MacKay was expected to seek the leadership after the Harper government's defeat, but said in 2016 the time wasn't right for his young family.

A party insider with close ties to Mr.MacKay, who would not speak publicly about his friend's future, said the long-time Nova Scotia Conservative is trying to maintain a high profile in case the Conservatives lose and Mr. Scheer fails a leadership review.

It's not unusual for party leaders to be challenged after elections. Brian Mulroney organized a leadership run after Joe Clark's Tories lost the 1980 election, and Jean Chrétien did the same in the Liberal Party against John Turner in 1984 and 1988. Mr.Chrétien faced challenges from Paul Martin in the last years of his mandate. Many Liberals see senior cabinet member Chrystia Freeland as a potential replacement for Mr. Trudeau. Mr. MacKay left the door open to a return to politics when he announced his retirement in May, 2015, and in interviews since.

He said he campaigned in five ridings on Tuesday in Montreal - where the Conservatives have not won a seat since 1988 - calling it "quite a sprint." He said he went to gatherings at candidates' headquarters, public meet-and-greets and knocked on doors, and had just arrived at the airport after a fundraising dinner.

Since the summer, Mr. MacKay has crisscrossed parts of Canada for party events.

Bob Plamondon, a political historian with deep knowledge of the Conservative Party, said he frequently hears from people about Mr. MacKay's potential.

"It's certainly something that I often hear, and to a large degree, it's because they look at whether he is someone who can make the party strong and relevant in all parts of Canada," he said, adding: "Among people who follow politics more generally, a lot of talk about Peter MacKay as an extraordinarily attractive candidate and a potential future prime minister."

Mr. Plamondon said Mr. MacKay has maintained his profile by engaging in media interviews and talking about foreign policy, and helping to support candidates.

"I think that this is Andrew Scheer's election to win or lose - and my sense is that Peter is giving him every opportunity to win," he said.

Mr. Plamondon said two years ago that most political observers would assume Mr.Trudeau would be Prime Minister for at least two terms because majority governments are rarely defeated after one term.

But he said no one could have predicted Mr.Trudeau's missteps.

"The expectation is the Conservatives should win this time out, and if Andrew Scheer does not, if he hasn't exhibited a lot of growth and potential and a positive performance on the campaign, then I think he's vulnerable," he said.

Mr. Plamondon said the revelation of Mr. Scheer's dual citizenship in mid-campaign was a "jolt to party members" and that he should have dealt with the issue sooner. Mr. Scheer also came under a lot of predictable criticism, he added, for his social conservative views.

"He seems to have been slow to own up to them and to frame how they would characterize his stance should he become prime minister, and he sounded almost Stephen-Harper-like - inauthentic and not as open about his views. If those are his views, he should say 'that's what I think' and not skirt around them."

With a report from Marieke Walsh

Associated Graphic

Former Conservative cabinet minister Peter MacKay, seen in Stellarton, N.S., in May, 2015, says he's 'doing everything I can to help Andrew and support him and his team.'


The Blues take the road of diplomacy to the White House
Tuesday, October 15, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B11

TORONTO -- On Tuesday, the Stanley Cup champion St. Louis Blues will visit the White House.

Per tradition, they will in all likelihood give U.S. President Donald Trump a monogrammed sweater.

They'll shake hands, take photos and Trump will start off saying something about hockey and probably end up starting a war in Greenland.

A lot of people are angry at the Blues for agreeing to this longstanding U.S. sports tradition because it involves Trump. Apparently, the players ought either to decline the invitation or show up wearing black masks. Any exposure to Trump makes them suspect as possible enemies of the resistance. Time to start taking down names, comrades.

Famously, NBA players are no longer expected to go to the White House. They are free to refuse because their league commissioner hates Trump, their executives hate Trump, their coaches hate Trump and their owners (pretend to) hate Trump.

This isn't exactly a bold stand.

It's a business posture. The NBA has discovered that opposition to the sitting U.S. executive tends to burnish their standing with paying customers.

Also, Trump - unlike, say, China - isn't showering the NBA with hundred-dollar bills from a leaf blower. Hence, the notable difference in tone when it comes to one strongman versus another.

Still, NBA players often make a bit of a deal announcing they will not set one foot in the White House while Trump remains in office, always to great cheers.

These are occasionally the same players who don't know anything about China, won't take questions about China and couldn't find China on a map, all while they are in China.

Guys who are nowhere near winning an NBA title - and thus in no danger of an invite over for Quarter Pounders and mindnumbing chit-chat - make these pledges as it regards the White House. It's become a sort of oath of loyalty in the NBA.

NHL players don't get the same advantage.

In the case of St. Louis, its principal owner, Tom Stillman, is a noted supporter of the Republican Party. The golden rule applies just as much in sports as it does in your line of work - the person who has the gold makes the rules.

If your employer instructs you, as a function of your work duties, to visit a place or person you do not agree with, you are left with a few options. You can refuse and take the consequences. You can take a principled stand and quit.

You can register your displeasure and go under protest. You can keep your mouth shut and hold your nose.

What's a little harder to do is say, "I'm not going and I demand that you like it. In fact, I demand your public support for me while I'm voicing my lack of such for you."

The St. Louis Blues, as with every other NHL winner during Trump's term, are choosing the road of diplomacy.

"Whatever your view on politics is, it's your own personal thing," Blues goalie Jake Allen told The St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

"But just the experience of going and seeing [the White House], not many people get that chance.

It's going to be pretty neat."

Well, anybody can arrange to tour the White House.

All it takes is a little foresight and an internet connection. But you see what Allen is trying to do here.

"It's a special house," said Blues forward Oskar Sundqvist.

"It's something you're going to remember for the rest of your life.

How it looks in there. How cool it is there."

Who knew? The St. Louis Blues are professional sports' greatest admirers of Palladian and neoclassical architecture.

What? The President lives there, too? Amazing. They hadn't heard that.

You can see these poor guys twisting themselves in knots in their attempt not to offend either side of America's political divide.

They're not visiting the head of state. They're going to take pictures of some really great furniture.

We seem to have forgotten one of the unavoidable compromises of life. Over the course of yours, you will occasionally have to consort with people you don't like.

That's part of what work is - learning to co-exist with people who aren't your best buddies. Every one of us has had a co-worker we despise. And every one of us who has remained sane through our professional lives has figured out a way to work with or around that person.

A sports team does not visit the White House (or any other house of government) for a political rally. They go there because it's a work trip.

Physical proximity to power does not equal endorsement of it.

Endorsement equals endorsement.

Taking a picture with someone does not mean you agree with everything - or anything - they think. It's just good manners. If you feel the record needs to be set straight afterward, you are very free to explain your own take on things.

Lots of people will listen. There has never been a moment in which the polity is more willing to hang on the political thoughts of men who've never studied deeply nor live anywhere close to what most of us consider the real world.

If you make two or five or 20 million bucks a year, I don't require a lecture from you on how I ought to conduct my affairs. What I need from you is a loan.

In this one instance, hockey players are the voice of reason on today's profound cultural and political matters. They don't want to speak to them because they realize they have nothing useful to say. They're hockey players. They want to play hockey, not puzzle out in public the political implications of unrest in Hong Kong on stability in Asia, or the wisdom of impeachment.

The key word there is "public."

I'm sure many of these guys have (like just about all the rest of us, muddy and semi-informed) thoughts on the matter. But for the same reason you would not like having your family arguments over the dinner table broadcast on live TV, they don't want theirs.

I don't urgently require the thoughts of NHL (or NBA or NFL or professional jai alai) players on politics any more than I do some random stranger on the streetcar.

I need the players' thoughts much less, actually. That random stranger is far more likely to share in my issues and concerns. We've completely lost sight of that disconnect.

Expecting famous people to be insightful just because they are famous isn't the solution to America's current White House problem. It's what got Americans into the problem in the first place.

Associated Graphic

U.S. President Donald Trump plays host to the 2017-18 Stanley Cup champions, the Capitals, at the White House in Washington on March 25, 2019.


When talent isn't enough
Early in the season, the Lightning and Leafs are already on emotional roller-coaster rides
Saturday, October 12, 2019 – Print Edition, Page S11

TORONTO -- Yes, it's early. But in the NHL, it's never too early for a good, ol' fashioned existential freak-out.

"Unless we change things, it's going to be a really, really, really long year," Steven Stamkos said after Tampa Bay's third game of the year. Third.

Then the Lightning slapped the Toronto Maple Leafs around for 60 minutes and it was Morgan Rielly's turn: "We have to be way better."

In this case, it's Game 5. Of 82.

Even by Toronto's standard, that seems a bit gun-jumpy.

This year, there is no sense of impending doom surrounding the high-expectation, hard-luck NHL set. There is just present doom.

Everything is a bad omen. Every on- or off-ice blip connects back to disappointments of the past, as well as acting as a predictor of a terrible future.

Two days ago, it was "Why can't John Tavares score?" - as though Tavares wasn't ever going to score again.

After Tavares scored, it's "Why can't the Leafs play defence?" - as though they will let in seven goals every game.

Presumably, if Toronto gets a shutout against the Red Wings in Detroit on Saturday night, it will be "Why didn't John Tavares play in net?" For some teams, it's always something. Those are the teams that exhaust themselves over the regular season, then seem surprised when things go wrong in April.

While there is a lot of argument in the modern NHL about what sort of team is best equipped to win - small and fast, big and tough, one with a goalie who's been bathed in holy waters - there is rather less about which of two emotional types you'd like to be.

There are those teams who are slick and doubt themselves and those that aren't and don't. There doesn't tend to be a lot of crossover.

The Leafs and Lightning are extreme examples of the first type. The Boston Bruins and St.

Louis Blues would be on the other end of the spectrum. You see what I'm getting at here.

Tampa and Toronto have bought heavily into the idea of skill. There are very few tough nuts on either team, no Brad Marchands or Alex Pietrangelos.

The sort of players who think of themselves as grinders, although they are a lot better than that.

This is one drawback to putting so much focus on skill and to constantly reinforcing how important that is.

It means you are collecting a certain sort of person, as well as certain sort of player.

Anyone who works in a creative business knows that the talent can be, well, strange. High strung. Prone to swings of emotion. When things are going well, they're top of the pops. And when they aren't, it's Chicken Little time.

I won't say that all of you have, at some point in your professional life, found yourself pacing around a parking lot screaming bloody murder into your phone because someone has had the gall - the unmitigated gall - to suggest you pull a couple of dodgy lines from your column. Sure, they're doing it for your own good, but you're still hopping up and down and shrieking as if you're Hemingway and they're cutting the first line of The Old Man and the Sea.

I'm not saying you've done that, but there are people out there who have.

A good work force pairs flighty types with more even-keeled colleagues. But your workplace doesn't have a separate room upstairs for journalists so that they can watch you while you're at your desk and then publish opinions about how you handled the Jones file.

This is becoming the real regular-season problem of teams such as the Leafs and the Lightning. It's not that they have no confidence in themselves because they have no talent. They have no confidence in themselves because they do.

Talent creates an expectation of results. When those results are thwarted, those teams are not allowed to say, "This will work eventually." There is a strong urge to say, "Maybe we should change everything and see if that works."

This isn't helped by a lot of outside noise telling them that, however much they change, it's either not enough or way too much. When things are working, that's a set up for disappointment. When they aren't, same goes.

Tampa coach Jon Cooper seems to enjoy the attention that comes with a visit to Toronto. He seemed to enjoy it less on Thursday, when a lot of questions boiled down to: "How devastated are you by last year's playoffs? A crippling amount or enough that you can still just barely get out of bed in the morning?" Cooper is unusually suave for a hockey coach, but even he seemed wrong-footed.

"If we're fortunate enough to make the playoffs, hopefully, if we do, win a round, we're probably going to hear [about last year's collapse] all the way until then," he said.

Fortunate enough to make the playoffs? Is Tampa Bay so twitchy now that that's where the bar's at? Is the team really so unsure of itself that it thinks lowballing its own chances so outrageously is the only way to stave off criticism?

Yes, talented teams win Cups.

They're all pretty talented in the NHL. Talent is not the ultimate arbiter of achievement. That's why nobody repeats as champion any more. Fifteen years after the introduction of the salary cap, the system has reached a point of relative equilibrium.

But we all know from our own lives that you do not succeed if you don't think you can. You don't succeed if your focus is on doing everything perfectly, all the time. And you especially don't succeed if your plan changes hour by hour, depending on what other people are telling you.

It grows clearer with each passing year that the regular season no longer matters in the NHL. Home ice is overrated. Fitness and momentum are not.

The NHL is beginning to take on an Olympic feel - the goal isn't to do well all the time, but to pace yourself so that you peak at one specific time.

With that in mind, maybe it'd be better for the Leafs and the Lightning to worry much less about last night's game, and focus much more on preparing for the ones they're going to be playing in six months. Because that's what confidence looks like.

Associated Graphic

Montreal's Brett Kulak and Toronto's John Tavares chase the puck during a game last Saturday. The Maple Leafs seem to already be in panic mode, Cathal Kelly writes, including freaking out when it took new captain Tavares five games to notch his first goal of the season.


Federal NDP struggle to hold ground in Edmonton
Despite its labour roots and progressive reputation, the party is at risk of losing its footing in the city as an incumbent MP steps down
Saturday, October 12, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A19

EDMONTON -- Heather McPherson is in a careful balancing act.

She's campaigning to hold Edmonton-Strathcona, Alberta's only NDP riding, for her party and promising to fight for pipelines in spite of her leader's firm opposition to the Trans Mountain expansion project.

The New Democrats have held the riding for more than a decade, but incumbent Linda Duncan is stepping down, opening up a three-way race for what is widely perceived as one of Alberta's most progressive ridings.

With pundits warning that a Conservative wave could sweep the province's 34 seats in the Oct.

21 election, Ms. McPherson says Strathcona is where the New Democrats will make their last stand in Alberta.

Edmonton has a history of breaking with Alberta's deep embrace of conservatism, aided by the votes of a large public sector and a disproportionately unionized blue-collar work force. For most of the past century, the city has been dubbed "Redmonton" owing to its socialist tendencies.

Three of its eight seats elected non-conservative candidates in 2015, speckling a Tory blue map of Alberta with spots of Liberal red and Ms. Duncan's orange blob.

But in the previous decade, the Conservatives won all or nearly all of Edmonton's seats.

And Ms. Duncan, who was elected in 2008, was only the second New Democrat to win a federal seat in Alberta's history.

Conservative hopeful Sam Lilly says discontent with the federal Liberals and New Democrats will help in his fight to turn the seat Tory again.

However, Ms. McPherson's campaign has not looked to federal NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh, but has leaned heavily on the playbook of former premier Rachel Notley, whose provincial seat makes up about a third of the federal riding.

The day after Mr. Singh announced that an NDP government would not impose a pipeline on a province that doesn't want one, stopping short of calling it a veto, Ms. McPherson said new pipelines could still be possible.

"We need to have a process in place that doesn't result in what we have right now," she said in an interview in late September.

"I'm very supportive of energy projects that go forward, that have a process that doesn't get held up in the courts. We all know that it sucks for business, that it sucks for Albertans when we're trying to build something and it is stopped time and time again."

She said Trans Mountain must be built along with a focus on the environment. Ms. Notley sought a grand bargain during her time in the premier's office: She became an advocate for Trans Mountain, yet introduced a carbon tax and a cap on emissions from the oil sands.

"Rachel Notley worked very hard for our oil and gas sector, but she did it in a way that she was fighting for our climate as well," Ms. McPherson said.

During the half-hour interview, she mentioned Ms. Notley several times and called her a role model. She uttered Mr.

Singh's name only once. "I feel like an Alberta NDP, that's how I feel," she said.

Mr. Singh has called it a mistake for the Trudeau government to buy Trans Mountain and has vowed the NDP would not allow the expansion of the pipeline, which runs from the Edmonton area to Metro Vancouver. The Liberals bought Trans Mountain in 2018, and the expansion is expected to be finished by mid-2022.

The strained relationship between Ms. Notley's Alberta NDP and a federal party based in Vancouver and Toronto isn't new. It's been rocky since 2016, when the national party held a convention in Edmonton.

Instead of celebrating Alberta's first NDP government, the federal party adopted what it called the Leap Manifesto, a document that advocates the swift end of the oil and gas industry. Ms. Notley, once one of the federal party's best fundraisers, has not raised money for them since.

In early October, Ms. Notley mused that she might not vote NDP federally, which would mean not backing her local candidate, Ms. McPherson. The provincial leader has turned down interview requests from The Globe and Mail to discuss her voting intentions.

Gil McGowan, president of the Alberta Federation of Labour, said the chances for a progressive win in Alberta are highest in the capital city.

"Edmonton is different from the rest of the province," he said.

"There's a direct line connection between union membership and progressive voting patterns. I've seen it repeatedly in election after election, where our members, because they've been exposed to a wider range of ideas, they just vote differently."

Three-way races and the potential for vote splitting can be a challenge for progressive parties in Alberta at the federal level, said Anne McGrath, who was a senior adviser to Jack Layton when he led the federal NDP, and later Ms. Notley. While the provincial Liberal Party has largely collapsed in Alberta, the federal party won four seats in 2015.

Ms. Duncan's first win was achieved by winning over Liberal supporters, Ms. McGrath said.

"Edmonton Strathcona was not an overnight thing. We focused on it, we built on the support we had provincially and had a strong federal campaign for Linda Duncan. There was also the phenomenon of many Liberal voters in that case deciding to support Linda and then it became a stronghold for the NDP," she said.

Liberal candidate Eleanor Olszewski is looking to win back those voters. She ran for the party in the riding in 2015 and increased its result from shy of 3 per cent of the vote in the previous election to nearly 21 per cent.

She has told the riding's progressive voters that only Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau can stand up to Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer and Premier Jason Kenney.

"There's a palpable difference between this time and last," she said. "Doors that were NDP last time are open to having a discussion this time. Either Mr.

Scheer or Mr. Trudeau will be prime minister. Mr. Singh and [Green Party Leader Elizabeth] May won't be. So we're in a situation where every riding and every vote counts."

Mr. Trudeau is deeply unpopular in Alberta, where many associate the province's economic hardship since 2014 with his time in office. The creation of stronger federal environmental rules and regulations on the energy industry have added to a strong current of western alienation.

However, Ms. Olszewski says voters in Strathcona, many of whom are students or bureaucrats, are more forgiving: "They respect the Prime Minister and they like the initiatives the Liberal government has put into place. They are very supportive.

They are."

Associated Graphic

Alberta NDP Leader Rachel Notley speaks at a rally in Edmonton in April. Federal NDP candidate Heather McPherson has cited Ms. Notley as a role model.


Spieth returns from break with high hopes
American had only four top-10 finishes last year, often hurting himself with poor final rounds
Wednesday, October 16, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B19

Jordan Spieth returns from his longest break during a calendar year hopeful that a fresh start will end his longest drought.

Spieth hasn't won since the 2017 British Open at Royal Birkdale, a span of 54 tournaments worldwide. He last played in August at the BMW Championship, where he failed to advance to the Tour Championship for the second straight year.

Spieth is at the CJ Cup in South Korea, and plans to stay in Asia another week for the PGA Tour's first event in Japan.

"I certainly want to get back in the winner's circle," Spieth said.

"It's been a little while and I would like to be more consistent this year, being able to tee it up on Sundays with chances to win more consistently, and that comes from better ball-striking."

Spieth said that he has spent time at home in Dallas working on his tee-to-green game. He is coming off one of his best years with the putter - and there have been some good ones - and believes once he gets the rest of his game in order, he'll have more chances.

He had only four top-10 finishes last year, often hurting himself with poor final rounds. The closest he finished to the winner was four shots behind in the Northern Trust, the first FedEx Cup playoff event.

"Each part of my game at different points in my career has been toward the top of the PGA Tour at different times, and sometimes at the same time," Spieth said.

"So I know that I'm capable of doing it. It's just a matter of the normal ups and downs of the game and addressing them, and quickly turning the downs to ups and then maintaining when those parts of the game are on top." WORLD CHALLENGE Except for the location, the "World" in Hero World Challenge seems to be lacking this year.

Tournament host Tiger Woods released the names of the 16 players who qualified for the 18-man field on Dec. 4 to Dec. 7 in the Bahamas. With two sponsor exemptions still to award, all but two players are Americans - defending champion Jon Rahm of Spain and Justin Rose of England, whose main residence is at Albany.

That would be the fewest international players since 2012 at Sherwood Country Club in California, when the only non-Americans were Graeme McDowell of Northern Ireland, Jason Day of Australia and Ian Poulter of England. McDowell won the tournament.

The field has two of the major champions in Woods (Masters) and Gary Woodland (U.S. Open).

It doesn't help that the Presidents Cup in Australia is the following week, and International captain Ernie Els is encouraging his prospective players to compete in the Australian Open the week before, opposite the Hero World Challenge.

Nine international players from outside Europe were among the top 50 on Aug. 26, the world ranking used to determine the Bahamas field. The most obvious absence is Hideki Matsuyama, who had played the World Challenge every year since 2015. Day had played only twice, while Adam Scott played only in 2016.

The two sponsor picks must come from the top 50 from the Aug. 26 ranking.

LPGA ROOKIE South Korea has made it five in a row thanks to a player named Six.

With five tournaments remaining in the LPGA Tour season, Lee6 Jeongeun already has wrapped up the points-based Louise Suggs Rolex Rookie of the Year. It's the fifth straight year a South Korean rookie will win the award, and Lee6 was the third of those who won a major.

She captured the U.S. Women's Open in South Carolina in early June.

"For five consecutive years, Korean golfers have won this Rookie of the Year award. I'm part of that list, and I am so proud and honoured," Lee6 said.

She follows Ko Jin-young, Park Sung-hyun, Chun In-gee and Kim Sei-young.

Lee6 spent three years on the Korean LPGA before coming to the United States, winning the money list her past two years.

LANGER'S TASK Bernhard Langer, who has won the Charles Schwab Cup five times, considers himself a "wild shot" to win again, and he has good reason.

Even with two more victories this year bringing his career total to 40 wins on the PGA Tour Champions, the 62-year-old German goes into the postseason at No. 7. That's his lowest ranking - he had never been anything but No. 1 since the Schwab Cup playoffs began in 2016.

Even before the postseason, Langer has finished out of the top five only once in his 11 previous seasons.

"Not quite where I was the last few years, but still within a shouting chance to do something," Langer said.

Points count double in the three playoff events, starting this week in Virginia. Even so, Langer is 1,060,106 points behind Scott McCarron and likely would have to win the next two events to have a chance. He has won the Schwab Cup four of the past five years.

LET'S PLAY TWO Asked to list his favourite course in the world, Justin Rose is inclined to pick a place where he isn't limited to one round.

"I try to pick a venue where I can play 36 holes in a day," Rose said.

He picked two in the London area - Sunningdale [Old and New] and Walton Heath [Old and New]. And in America, he went to Long Island - National Golf Links and Sebonack, which border each other. His other choice was literally a stretch - Merion and Pine Valley, one northwest of Philadelphia, the other so far to the southeast that it's in New Jersey.

"A 40-minute drive from one another," Rose said. "But if you're really keen, you can do that in a day."

DIVOTS No one has turned his season around like Bernd Wiesberger of Austria. He was No. 389 in the world going into the Made in Denmark event in late May. He won in Denmark, won the Scottish Open and won the Italian Open to reach a career-best No.


That's an improvement of 367 spots in five months. ... One year after Europe won the Ryder Cup at Le Golf National outside Paris, Alex Noren is the only player from either team playing in the French Open. Noren is the defending champion. ... Steve Stricker finished No. 4 on the PGA Tour Champions money list, despite playing nine tournaments, none over the past three months.

Associated Graphic

Jordan Spieth of the U.S. shoots from a sand trap during the Northern Trust in Jersey City, N.J., last August. The American, who says he's eager to 'get back in the winner's circle,' has spent his downtime in Dallas practising his tee-to-green game.


How do you raise a child with ADHD? Joanne Nixon is figuring that out day by day
Monday, October 14, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A13

I tried to talk myself out of a growing panic.

While four of us tramped through the woods in search of my 11-year-old daughter, the sound of loons echoed eerily out on the lake. Soon, it would be dark.

Rose had wandered off without warning. Because she has poor impulse control, she routinely does things without asking. Rose has ADHD, a neurological disorder.

I searched behind bushes. My hand shook as I clicked my flashlight on high. Tree branches were scratching my legs, but I was so numb I couldn't feel the sting. Sweaty and bleeding, I walked around a huge tree and caught a glimpse of red and blue, the colours of her top and shorts. I cried out.

"I'm here," Rose said, 20 metres away. She held up a tiny, plastic salad dressing container that had gone missing. She said she'd gone into the woods to track it down.

"A squirrel ran off with it. I found it buried under pine needles," she said.

At that moment, because I couldn't speak, I crouched and pulled her into my arms. She didn't resist. I buried my face in her soft, brown hair and held her cheeks in my hands.

"I was just right here," she said, bewildered.

Part of me was annoyed, and another part was proud of her for being clever. Not many people are observant enough to track down a tiny piece of Tupperware in the forest at twilight. Yet, I couldn't decide whether to rejoice in her unique intelligence or chastise her for going off by herself - a constant dilemma that her impulsive behaviour creates.

My daughter is perplexing to parent. I've struggled with being a mother to a child with ADHD for years, often second-guessing myself. I wasn't an understanding parent for most of her childhood.

When she was 8, she gave me a birthday card signed: "Happy birthday Mommy, hope you have a great day with me, the Annoying One."

I wanted to weep. I resolved to hide my irritation better.

To ask my daughter to sit still without distraction for five minutes is to invite failure. Because she has a sluggish, dopamine-starved reward system in her brain, even interesting activities can seem dull to her, causing her to lose focus. Rose is a novelty seeker. She's wired for adventure. Trying to change her into a person who loves routine, order and rules wasn't going to work. What had to change were my expectations. I vowed to relax around my daughter's unfiltered, creative brain.

As if she sensed my new resolve, Rose tested me the next week. As I opened the front door, our dog jumped up to greet me. When I bent down, I realized that Rose had painted our dog's toenails pink.

Of course, she hadn't asked permission. I laughed and told her it was a lovely colour she'd chosen.

In July, she invited all the kids on the street to our yard to play "Olympics," and created a precarious obstacle course out of inverted swing sets, camping mattresses, three-step stools and rope.

My husband protested: "What if a kid gets hurt and we get sued?" "They're having fun," I said. "Let's notice how inventive she is this time."

Now that she's a tween, I decided that it was time to have the talk about her unique brain. We had to stop calling ADHD the "wiggles." She had a right to know what caused her to get bored at school; what made her do backflips on the livingroom rug for hours; what gave her poor self control.

But when I brought it up, she shouted, "Stop! I'm not talking about this." Then she ran out the back door, slamming it hard and hurled her body on the trampoline.

The truth? I was relieved not to have that conversation.

What would I tell her? ADHD behaviour annoys teachers and can frustrate people who don't understand that it's a disorder? Some ADHD kids often have poor emotional control, which means you could go off like a bomb in a public place at any time. It wasn't a conversation I looked forward to. Instead, our entire family avoided the topic. We said it was because we were shielding Rose. It was really because talking about a disability is uncomfortable.

Until one day, I found out how it made her feel to have ADHD. It slipped out in conversation. I asked her if she wanted to meet my cousin's daughter, who was smart at school and great at sports.

It took her a long time to answer.

"No," she said. "She might not like me."

"Why wouldn't she like you?" I asked.

She didn't answer for several minutes. Finally, she said: "Because I have ADHD."

That conversation was a turning point. I could no longer collude with my daughter to pretend that her brain wasn't an issue.

I didn't force Rose to talk about it because pushing my agenda doesn't work. Instead, I started to insert remarks into our daily conversation.

We were watching a Finnish crime show on Netflix. The detective was able to track down the murderer by taking off his socks and shoes and standing in a grid on the floor he'd made with masking tape. He would gaze at photos of suspects and crime scenes, then close his eyes and enter a dreamy, altered state. When he opened his eyes, he knew who the killer was.

"I'm sure that cop has ADHD," I said. "He's very smart but has a quirky way of figuring things out.

People think he's odd, but they admire him."

"I'm like that, Mom," Rose said, smiling.

Another day, she asked me about Will Smith, Justin Timberlake and Jim Carrey - actors she admires who've gone on record as having the brain disorder.

"Lots of creative people have it," I said.

Rose was surprised that people with ADHD could end up being successful.

"People with ADHD learn differently," I said.

"Because nobody understands this disorder, it can make you feel like you're not smart."

My daughter's impulsive behaviour doesn't mean she won't be successful in the future. Rose responds best by being given a choice, which requires a small but critical tweak in how I talk to her.

I know that self control is a necessity. Sometimes, it takes longer for certain kids. But I've decided to accept my daughter with all her quirkiness. I've discovered that there's a big difference between tolerating a child and genuinely accepting someone as a person.

Joanne Nixon lives in Port Perry, Ont.

Associated Graphic


Sports Illustrated has become what Frank Deford hated
Monday, October 7, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B11

TORONTO -- "Knowing more earned-run averages than the next fellow has nothing whatsoever to do with sports writing. As a general rule, in fact, the worst sports writers are the experts, and more sports writers have been done in by becoming pseudo-coaches than were ever ruined by booze, women, or jet lag. In sports writing, a lot of knowledge is a dangerous thing." - Frank Deford I n that way that all your favourite things are the ones you first discovered at 15 years old, Frank Deford is my favourite sports writer.

Not a sportsy person, but rather an under-credentialled psychologist who'd got lost in a gymnasium, Deford was the great profiler of his generation.

His suspicion of the basic material of pro sports - stats, videotape, jargon - was such that he once referred to football coaches with a German term, fachidioten. Specialty idiots.

Deford was not concerned with how sports are played, but what effect the playing has on people who do it. It doesn't sound like much of a distinction, but it's the difference between a textbook on Russian history and War and Peace.

If you are of a certain age, Deford and his contemporaries at Sports Illustrated defined how you thought about sports, at a time when sports were beginning to define the culture.

You read the local paper for scores and opinion. You read Sports Illustrated to better understand your own people. It was less journalism than anthropology.

An idea that aspirational - artistic, even - was always going to have a time limit. That limit came up this week.

At some point in recent years, Sports Illustrated had ceased to be an idea and instead became a brand. Once that happened, it was doomed.

The magazine was flipped around among corporate buyers, stripped of the protection history had built up around it and steadily devalued. The newest owner is one of those vampiric tech outfits that turn a little bit of published gold into a lot of internet lead, bleeding out their host in the process.

Sports Illustrated is not dead yet. It's something worse. It's a zombie version of its old self. It's becoming something Deford would have hated.

It's a sad state of affairs and makes you wistful. Perhaps you remember getting your copy in the mail and feeling the need to begin reading it in the doorway.

Though I did not care anything about horse racing, yachting or high-school football, Sports Illustrated had a way of making those topics urgent.

What Sports Illustrated captured wasn't just the romance of the games we play. Romance is cheap and easy. It was the tragedy, tedium and ridiculousness that attend all romantic things.

The publication put superhuman feats into human context. That's expensive and hard.

SI's writers had advantages that have disappeared for most sports journalists - time, unlimited resources, heft in the marketplace and, above all, access. People such as Deford, in so thoroughly dissecting their subjects, created the need for the publicrelations establishment that now acts as a barrier between players and the media who cover them.

Perversely, this means that Sports Illustrated helped ruin Sports Illustrated.

For a golden moment - a good long while, if you think about it - Sports Illustrated got the final word. No achievement could be fully registered until SI had its say.

That often took a while and was always worth the wait.

Eventually, the internet showed up and things started to get quicker. I was first alerted to the existence of Google by an article in a magazine. I remember the moment precisely.

Now I learn about every single other thing from Google and can only vaguely recall any of it.

When you can suddenly know about anything at any time, the value of that commodity - knowing - declines.

It also makes it more difficult to discern among what is useful knowledge, what is peripheral knowledge and what is pure nonsense. Eventually, it becomes impossible. After a while, all that knowledge is boiled down to its elementary component - information. We're now being hit by information - and, especially, information about sports - constantly.

If the compactness of Sports Illustrated was a cool drink, the information that has replaced it is like opening your mouth so that someone can insert a firehose.

So I do not mourn the decline of Sports Illustrated, or at least, not in the way most people who read it back in the day are doing right now. I miss the world Sports Illustrated took such a large hand in creating.

(For others, this could be a different, seminal publication. Rolling Stone, The Paris Review, Interview or what have you. Not everyone loves sports, but they do love something.)

That was a world in which you couldn't know everything and carefully guarded the things you did. You didn't just read books, but reread them occasionally to remind yourself of what was in there. You folded pages and underlined passages. You kept your magazines in order in boxes.

An article could live forever then. The topic was closed and, since there was only so much paper and memory available, why keep going?

Nowadays, articles birth more articles about those articles, resulting in articles refuting those articles, and eventually ending in a summation article that wonders why we cared about the article in the first place.

Once you exponentially multiply your points of reference, the result is inevitably self-reference.

The thing is about itself. And no one has ever started a good story with, "Here's what I think about what I heard happened ..." That's what's missing now: stories. They're getting harder to find. There are great storytellers out there, but they're hidden in a thicket of bad storytellers. Every time an institution such as Sports Illustrated is turned into a factory farm churning out catchy headlines, it gets harder to tell the difference.

You can't kill stories, of course.

They'll survive. But it pains me in some small way that a generation might grow up without the variety of cultural touchstones I was lucky enough to have or, at least, ones not as obvious. It robs people of a common language, and makes it harder for them to understand one another. That's a much broader question than the decline of the publishing business and, I think, far more pressing.

In the end, Deford was right about a lot of knowledge being a dangerous thing in sports writing, if not as he meant it.

Deford lived a long and remarkable life, so it is hard to regret his death. He had a better run than most. But I do regret he's not around now to write about how he got it so right and so wrong at the same time.

Years ago, a swarm of moths invaded Drew Dias's apartment in Australia. Looking back, he now sees how they foreshadowed his own migration
Wednesday, October 9, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A22

I recently celebrated my tenth anniversary of immigrating to Canada by thinking about giant moths.

In the fall of 2007, a swarm of migratory moths descended upon the coastal city in Australia, where I was living with the woman who became my wife. At that time, we were both international students - me from England and she from Canada - and had been dating for about six months. But unbeknownst to us, that swarm of moths was a portent for what our future would hold.

We were finishing our graduate degrees at the University of Wollongong in Australia. Wollongong is a charming city about 100 kilometres south of Sydney, nestled between mountains and the ocean, where students go surfing between classes.

We never learned to surf, but we sometimes trekked to the mountains on the weekend. One Saturday, we walked to the outskirts of the city for an all-day trek, when we noticed a storm coming in.

There was a black cloud moving over the top of the mountains and heading toward the city. This didn't make sense. We had checked the weather forecast that morning and there was no mention of a storm or even rainfall.

This black cloud came closer and partially covered the sun. A deep rumble echoed in the mountains and sounded like leaves being violently scattered. We turned around and started heading back as people got into their cars and drove in the opposite direction. Once we approached the edge of the downtown area, close to our apartment, I began to notice these huge moths, dark grey, with a wingspan the full breadth of my hand. Anyone still on the streets was promptly rushing indoors.

By the time we reached our apartment building, we were running and swatting these moths as they engulfed us, landing on our clothes and in our hair. The distant rumbling had transformed into something more closely resembling the sound of a whitewater rapid, and a swarm of these insects had now blocked out the sun entirely and cast the afternoon into 3 a.m. darkness. I turned and looked at the sky.

There must have been several billion directly above us.

As we watched the swarm from our apartment window, it was like witnessing a judgment from the Old Testament. The visibility was maybe 20 feet, and everything beyond that was encased in a thick, grey soup. Moths careened into the glass and bounced off with a vaguely melodious jingle. It was mesmerizing and terrifying. When I saw one in the family room, I assumed we had brought it in with us. But then I saw another and another and traced them to the bathroom where I discovered them entering via the light-fixture. I watched as they emerged, having collapsed their wings and pushed their bodies through the narrow slit between the light canopy and the ceiling. I rolled up a magazine and hit one hard in flight, barely knocking it off course.

In Australia, it's safer to presume that most insects will bite you and deliver a harmful poison. Upon that thought, I shut the door to the bathroom and embarked on a systematic extermination of any that had broken out. It took a full-arm strike against the wall from a thick magazine to take them down. Even then, I had to follow up with a few stamps from the business end of my shoe. I re-entered the bathroom with my head and face bound in a scarf, armed with a tall can of deodorant and the magazine. Once I'd closed off their entry point with duct tape, I proceeded to thrash and spray my way through hundreds of moths. It was probably the most exhausting and abstract way that I've ever spent an hour.

The following morning, they were gone. They had vacated the city and moved on to someplace else. Later that day, I found out from my neighbour that this type of moth is called a bogong moth, notable for its biannual migrations to the Australian Alps, and native to southern Queensland. Every once in a while, the wind blows the swarm off its migratory path and it ends up invading coastal cities, such as the one I lived in. The locals brushed it off as "that bloody moth invasion again," and went back to their regular routines.

More than a decade has passed since that day, and rarely does a month or a moth go by that I don't think about it. That event perfectly articulated the theme of my life, both before and after. Two years later, I undertook a migration of my own - to Canada, where I started a new life in a new home with the young woman who outran a storm of giant moths with me.

Immigrating to Canada meant leaving my place of birth to travel thousands of miles to Australia in order to travel thousands of miles in a different direction. Prior to that, my life had been one continuous migration from young adulthood into my early 30s, neither settling for anywhere or anyone. Yet, somehow, this all had to happen exactly the way it did for me to reach my final destination. To get to my true home and find my true love. I hadn't been blown off course any more than I had been blown on course. It was all just part of the journey and the path I have been walking my whole life.

Like a migratory moth, there was an internal program running inside of me. This sudden invasion of giant moths was a motif and a harbinger of my destiny. The dead moth carcasses I cleaned up inside my apartment the next day were the former parts of myself I had shed as they no longer served me. I was migrating to a purpose and a destination I can now only fully comprehend when I look back at my life.

But life has to be lived in forward motion, in the faith that it will all work out in the end. And I'm confident that our three children will tell you that it all worked out well in the end.

When I think about my younger days living in different parts of the world and having exciting experiences and adventures, there was always a darkness that followed me. This sometimes blocked the light, and as long as I kept migrating somewhere else, somewhere new, I could avoid it. Until finally, when I stopped moving on and became consumed by the thing I had feared and been avoiding my whole life, I was transformed by it. By love. And the darkness became the light in my life that led me home.

Drew Dias lives in Mississauga, Ont.

Associated Graphic


Not your father's dorm room
Experts say postsecondary institutions are feeling pressure to offer higher-end student-housing facilities as a way to attract the best and brightest
Special to The Globe and Mail
Friday, October 11, 2019 – Print Edition, Page H4

MONTREAL -- The folks at Toronto-based branding and environmental design firm Entro are confident they have succeeded in helping transform a former Holiday Inn in downtown Montreal into an attractive, convivial space for students.

A bold graphic treatment throughout the 19-storey building uses a multicoloured palette and abstract shapes with prominence given to red in a nod to the official colour of nearby McGill University.

The recently opened residence on Sherbrooke Street West, called Campus1, is part of Toronto-based Knightstone Capital Management Inc.'s growing chain of student-housing facilities.

Campus1 is not formally affiliated with any one institution but is intended to provide much-needed student housing in a city that boasts four universities.

Managed by Canadian Campus Communities (a subsidiary of American Campus Communities, the largest private dormitory manager in the United States), the 886-bed facility represents the latest attempt in efforts by players in the sector to enhance the academic experience with residences far-removed from the drab cinder block dormitories of yore.

"Knightstone wanted us to express something a little more bold. We wanted to create an elevated student-residence experience," Entro partner Rae Lam said during a recent guided tour of the facility.

"We feel that the brand component resonates with users."

Designed by Diamond Schmitt Architects of Toronto, Campus1 bills itself as "luxury urban living." Amenities include a ground-floor "Inspiration Room" for informal gatherings, movie nights and other events, a cardio and yoga studio, a fully equipped fitness centre and mini basketball court, a cafeteria and a games room.

There has been much talk in recent years about heightened competition - dubbed an "amenities arms race" by some - in the student-housing market. Private-sector developers and investment funds are increasingly active in the space, as cash-strapped universities look to outsource their student housing projects while still keen to fuel future growth with an ever-expanding student population.

Higher-end residences, in particular, have garnered a lot of attention.

"Universities are probably responding to competitive pressures. That is, if they didn't build such high-end residences they would be at a disadvantage with other universities in attracting students," Brian McCall, professor of education, economics and public policy at the University of Michigan, said in an e-mail.

Research in a paper he wrote with two colleagues - College as Country Club: Do Colleges Cater to Students' Preferences for Consumption? - indicates that "all but the top high school student achievers place more weight on non-academic amenities than academic quality when choosing a university," Prof. McCall said.

"In short, this is being driven by student demand."

But Kevin McClure, assistant professor of higher education at the University of North Carolina Wilmington, wonders if the extent of the posh-student-living trend hasn't been somewhat overblown.

"We actually don't have a very good handle on whether or not there is a trend," he said in an interview.

"The majority of on-campus residence halls are still very much your traditional cinder block, traditional buildings."

The jury is out, too, on the relative merits of amenitiesrich, hotel-style accommodations compared with the more traditional dormitorystyle model.

Some studies go so far as to suggest that offering too many lifestyle perks and distractions can have a negative effect on academic performance. Other research indicates that hotel-style suites offer fewer occasions for crucial social interaction than traditional residences. Social interaction is deemed a key factor contributing to student wellness and mental health, which in turn enhance academic performance.

Indeed, wellness now ranks high on universities' checklist of student housing priorities. What's important, say some experts, is the active promotion of well-being and not how many luxury features or comforts are on offer. Of course, Campus1 and other facilities that follow a similar business model offer various student-support programs and activities.

Prof. McCall says it's still unclear whether or not non-academic amenities are hurting students in terms of academic achievement. He is currently researching whether increasing amenities reduces student drop-out.

Avi Friedman, professor of architecture at McGill University, says North American student residences lag their European counterparts not only in terms of smart design and sustainability ideas but also in innovation on the social and learning experience fronts.

"Some places [in Europe] recognize that having the students in the community is a resource to tap into," he said in an interview.

The Netherlands, for example, boasts a successful experiment in intergenerational living.

Long-term senior-care facility Humanitas Deventer allows a small group of students to live there for free. In return, the students must put in at least 30 hours a month engaging with the senior residents.

The students not only benefit from having a significant financial burden lifted from their shoulders but also learn from and forge enriching relationships with the elders.

The seniors - often cruelly cut off from meaningful participation in society - in turn get support, stimulation and a sense of belonging.

At the University of Utah, Lassonde Studios is a "Live/Learn" multipurpose space combining a 400-bed residence with a 20,000-square-foot innovation hangar - dubbed the "garage" and equipped with 3-D printer and laser cutters - where budding entrepreneurial students can design and prototype their startup ideas. The award-winning facility received financial backing from Canadian mining magnate Pierre Lassonde.

Lassonde Studios provides a mix of different types of living space: pods or small rooms equipped with built-in bed, desk and storage; industrial-style lofts with a shared kitchen and lounge; and more conventional single or double rooms. Each residential floor has a specific theme: games and digital media; adventure and gear; product design; and sustainability and global impact.

At Montreal's Concordia University, the accent is on fostering relationships and community spirit.

Lauren Farley, director of residence life, says her institution puts a premium on the role of social connection in the residences.

"We really are that traditional style dorm housing," she said, adding: "If we were to expand, we would look at different models."

For now, the emphasis is on communal spaces and creating a robust supportive framework, she said.

At the former Grey Nuns convent in downtown Montreal, converted into a Concordia student residence several years ago, each floor has a kitchenette/lounge.

A contingent of residential assistants, second- or third-year students who live in the residence, are there to mentor and help the first-years.

"You could put whatever amenities you want, but upper-level students offering support is what makes the difference," Ms.Farley said.

Associated Graphic

Campus1, a recently opened residence in Montreal, is not directly affiliated with any college or university. The building was designed by Diamond Schmitt Architects for Toronto-based Knightstone Capital Management Inc., which has a growing chain of student-housing facilities.


Saturday, October 12, 2019

An examination of the extreme self
A new Toronto exhibit captures our strange relationship with media and technology in a display that is both irresistible and creepy
Saturday, October 12, 2019 – Print Edition, Page R4

Do you expect to live until 79 ... or 83 ... or 102? Maybe the real question should be: Who wants to know?

You can take a life expectancy quiz in the lobby of the Museum of Contemporary Art Toronto these days. The results will be displayed on a colourful pixelated screen for you - and anybody else in the vicinity - to consider. The quiz, an artistic project by Canadian tech executive Dennis Kavelman, neatly captures our odd relationship with media and technology. As it flatters the participant with its clever confusion of particularity and individuality, and then offers the personal information it has mined for public display, it is both irresistible and a bit creepy.

So welcome to the age of you, or Age of You, an exhibition about the contemporary state of selfhood. The show is based on a forthcoming book by two international writer/art curators, Shumon Basar and Hans-Ulrich Obrist, and the Canadian novelist, artist and designer Douglas Coupland of Generation X fame, and it follows the trio's 2015 title The Age of Earthquakes: A Guide to the Extreme Present. Rather surprisingly for a project about social changes caused by new technology, the exhibition attempts to reproduce the linear experience of the proposed book, page after page, in another of MOCA's determined efforts to make cultural theories concrete and accessible. So, you can follow a sequential route carefully marked on the floor of the museum's second- and thirdfloor galleries through Chapters 1 to 13 ... or just wander among these large text-and-photography panels at will. Either way, you will quickly grasp the Couplandesque thesis: Digital technology and social media are transforming the way we experience our consciousness, leading to what the writers call the extreme self.

Despite its name, the extreme self is a condition that suggests a loss of individuality in an era when people do not feel they exist if they are not narrating that existence on social media. As the bar for individuality is set higher and higher, more and more of us will fail to clear it. Age of You notes that millions of Chinese bachelors are convinced by clever chatbots that they are communicating with real girlfriends, in a country where men outnumber women 113.5 to 100, while the Silicon Valley billionaires who have crafted the future are now planning postapocalyptic escapes to New Zealand - or Mars. Meanwhile, consensus-based reality is breaking down in the face of internet conspiracy theories about everything from vaccination to school shootings.

There is loads of truth in Age of You's insights and, as it suggests that only those over 40 have comfortably experienced classic individuality, it may offer the middleaged many "Aha!" moments. All this would explain, for example, why young Instagrammers have been earnestly promising each other that in the future they are going to enjoy holidays rather than living them as a series of photo shoots, leaving the seniors to puzzle over the need for either the posing or the pledge to stop it.

But there's also loads of overstatement and generalization in a text purposefully delivered in snippets that can be grasped as quickly as social-media posts.

Coupland, Basar and Obrist do love their epigrams, starting with "The 20th century was about what belongs to who. The 21st century is about who belongs to what," and continuing with "Can young people ever have nostalgia if they only ever inhabit a present?" or "Right now, anxiety is to Generation Y what depression was to Generation X." It's not that you are going to disagree with these bold statements, it's just that, well before Chapter 13, you may feel so hopelessly and depressively overwhelmed that you can barely peep out any counter examples. "Didn't recent climate protests show that many millennials have a completely traditional understanding of individual responsibility?" you may find yourself muttering belatedly as you head for the exit.

Thank goodness that Age of You is also an art exhibition of multimedia work by international artists that allows you to stop and consider these issues in a more contemplative mode, offering exactly the kind of slower experience of which the extreme self, the curators argue, is increasingly incapable. Satoshi Fujiwara has contributed an unsettling portrait of a crowd on a heroic scale, in the form of a giant photographic banner twisted around two columns in the centre of the exhibition space. One side features a mash-up of intense faces rendered in high contrast and saturated tones; the other closes in on a multitude of enlarged facial parts - eyes, beards, cheeks.

Meanwhile, Yuri Pattison has made wallpaper covered in the different eye emojis used by various social-media platforms and apps, surrounding the viewer with a cheeky metaphor for dubious emotions and perpetual surveillance. These are works that let you question the changing relationship between the individual and the group in a less didactic environment.

On the subject of our relationship with automation, the London fashion designer Craig Green is represented by a marketing video for his latest designs: They feature brightly coloured, flag-like clothing inspired by kites and sails, and modelled not by people but by robots whose stick bodies are powered by hydraulic movements. And Agnieszka Kurant creates a metaphor for crowdsourcing with sculptures of coloured sand that have been built for her by termite colonies. Both bodies of work provide eerie experiences that evoke the softening of the barrier between humanity and technology, yet also create colourful delight. Perhaps if the viewer just reads the Age of You "book" as a rather grandiose curatorial statement, there's room here to consider a dozen contemporary art works in that context, but on their own merits.

One of the most compelling contributions is by Stéphanie Saadé: Digiprint is an oversized digital photograph that might appear, at first glance, to be one giant blackand-grey abstraction. It is actually an image of an unilluminated smartphone screen covered in thumb- and fingerprints. Enlarged to statuesque proportions as if to reflect the phone's importance in a life, the image captures both the persistent technology and the fleeting mark of the user, turning the familiar into the strange. It is a thing of paradoxical beauty which, like many a successful art object, operates in a realm beyond words.

Age of You continues at the Museum of Contemporary Art Toronto until Jan. 5, 2020.

Associated Graphic

Left: The Age of You exhibit at Toronto's Museum of Contemporary Art features an unsettling piece by Satoshi Fujiwara that depicts a crowd in the form of a large photographic banner twisted around two columns. Right: Agnieszka Kurant created a metaphor for crowdsourcing with sculptures of coloured sand that have been built for her by termite colonies.


Kipchoge secures his spot among history's greatest athletes
Monday, October 14, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B9

TORONTO -- In order to run a sub-two-hour marathon, one must maintain a steady pace just over 21 kilometres an hour.

Most of us have been on a treadmill at some point. Six km/h is a nice, brisk walk. Anything more than eight km/h is jogging.

Ten or so is running. Fifteen is running hard.

Twenty-one kilometres an hour is sprinting, close to the maximum speed of the average person in a short burst.

If you tried to run 21 km/h for two hours, nothing bad would happen to you. Because you couldn't do it. More than 100 billion of us have lived and died in the time homo sapiens have walked the Earth, and we can say, at nearly a certainty, none of them have done it.

Until Eliud Kipchoge did it on Saturday.

There is a theory - the endurance-running hypothesis - which suggests human physiology developed as it did so we could run down our prey over long distances. Moreso than any other species, evolution designed humans to run. This is why someone who's never attempted a halfmarathon is able to do so without benefit of training (albeit, painfully).

While not all of us can box or play shortstop or swim, every able-bodied man and woman can run. And none of us has run better than Kipchoge.

As such, there is now good reason to think of the Kenyan distance runner as not just the greatest athlete alive, but perhaps the greatest in human history.

Kipchoge did not set a world record for the marathon (which he already holds) over the weekend.

His quest to get under two hours required major tweaking, which would not be possible in a sanctioned race. As such, the result gets no official recognition.

The event was organized by a British chemical company rather than an athletic body. The course in Vienna was chosen for its optimal conditions.

Instead of the usual three pacesetters for a marathon, there were dozens. They dropped in and out of the race, forming a 'V' pattern around Kipchoge that protected him from headwinds. A car travelled just ahead of the pack, keeping them on schedule.

So none of this will go in the books. But Kipchoge's time of 1 hour 59 minutes 40 seconds becomes to this century what 3 minutes 59.4 seconds (Roger Bannister's time when he was the first man to run a mile in under four minutes) was to the last.

It is an arbitrary mark that draws a tangible line across what human beings consider themselves capable of.

"Today we went to the moon and came back to Earth," Kipchoge said afterward. And although that analogy has been used before after remarkable feats, this time it doesn't feel like hyperbole.

At the first Olympic marathon, just one competitor finished in under three hours. By the late 1960s, they'd got down under 2:10.

But there was a broad consensus in the running community that, while theoretically possible, subtwo hours was not a practical goal.

Then Kipchoge arrived. The age given on his passport is 34, but there are rumours he is a good bit older, perhaps as much as 40.

During the early part of his career, he ran middle distances. He was excellent at it, but not legendary. He won a gold in the 5,000 metres at the 2003 world championships and a bronze the next year at the Athens Olympics.

In 2013, he switched to the marathon. Since then, he has ruled over the discipline.

He's lost only once - finishing second in his sophomore race behind a man who eclipsed the then-world record. In losing, Kipchoge posted a time that would have been the best only six years earlier. From that point on, he was untouchable.

Despite the wealth he's accrued through athletics, Kipchoge lives a life of unusual austerity in Kenya. He spends most of his time at a remote training camp, where everyone takes turns cooking and cleaning. He is said to have a gentle, thoughtful demeanour and is fond of aphorisms ("No man is limited"; "Don't chase two rabbits at once").

After a steady period of dominance, Kipchoge's focus drifted from gold medals to the two-hour mark.

He first attempted to break through it in 2017, but flagged at the end. He came up 25 seconds short. A team of scientists was drafted in to engineer Saturday's second and, according to Kipchoge, final attempt. They sought to ensure every aspect of his race - shoes, weather, aerodynamics, mid-course diet, altitude - was perfect. But Kipchoge still had to run it himself.

One of the things Kipchoge rued about his first try was that it was undertaken in near-total silence on a closed track. It was completely unlike a normal race.

This time, he wanted an audience pushing him forward.

Thousands of Viennese and running aesthetes gathered on the route. Kipchoge ran the final stretch pointing to each section of the crowd like a politician greeting his supporters. Even at the end, his gait was so fluid it seemed as though he were being carried forward on a gale.

As he crossed the finish line, Kipchoge picked up speed and threw himself, rather than collapsed, into his supporters' arms.

After 42.195 kilometres, he looked ready to run another.

Now, very near the end of his career, Kipchoge becomes one of the most famous people alive. It's likely that his marathon at next summer's Tokyo Games will be his last. Afterward, he has said he would like to devote himself to good works.

Once he'd finished on Saturday, Kipchoge reached back to Bannister for a point of comparison.

"It has taken 65 years for a human being to make history in sport," he said.

Three months after Bannister broke the four-minute mile in 1954, two people (including Bannister) did it in a single race. Many hundreds have done it since. So it is in the way of things that Kipchoge's mark will not stand for long. He said so himself on Saturday.

That hardly matters. What the Kenyan has done is more important than a number. It is the thing that connects a few great athletes with visionary geniuses in other fields. Eliud Kipchoge has redefined what is possible in the hope that, having seen that it can be done, others will follow.

Associated Graphic

Kenyan Eliud Kipchoge runs into a supporter's arms after finishing a marathon in under two hours on Saturday in Vienna. A group of scientists helped engineer the runner's achievement by ensuring factors such as weather, aerodynamics, diet, altitude and his footwear were in perfect condition.


'Caps coach is hungry for success
Dos Santos says he knows what he 'signed up to' and plans to move forward after disappointing first year
Wednesday, October 9, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B16

VANCOUVER -- Asked to describe his first year as coach of the Vancouver Whitecaps, Marc Dos Santos paused.

"Challenging," he said after several seconds.

The description may be an understatement.

The Whitecaps finished the regular season with a 1-0 loss to Real Salt Lake on Sunday, sealing their spot at the bottom of Major League Soccer's Western Conference. The club's 8-16-10 record was the second worst in the league, just behind expansion FC Cincinnati.

Various issues off the field - including abuse allegations involving a previous Whitecaps women's team and a front-office shakeup - compounded the pitiful results and fans loudly expressed their displeasure.

It certainly wasn't the season Dos Santos wanted in his first year as an MLS bench boss.

"I'm not delusional. I don't want to have a second year like that," he said in a recent interview. "But I don't need the fans to tell me that. ... I don't need anyone to be cheerleading me. I know how much I want to succeed next year."

The 42-year-old from Montreal inherited a difficult situation when he was hired last November.

Just a week earlier, several players and the team's then-president told reporters that a "divided" locker room had caused on-field problems in a season that saw the Whitecaps miss the playoffs. The issue grew when the organization fired coach Carl Robinson and his staff in late September, the group said.

"I felt when I arrived I was already arriving in a difficult moment," said Dos Santos, who came to Vancouver having spent 12 years coaching professional soccer. His most recent post had been as an assistant for Los Angeles FC.

Challenges persisted through the offseason, as the club parted ways with 20 players and brought in a raft of newcomers from around the world, including the first Iraqi (left back Ali Adnan) and the first Tunisian (centre back Jasser Khmiri) to play in MLS.

Dos Santos said the roster overhaul was already in motion when he took up his post, but conceded that the drastic changes took a toll.

"We were not ready to switch the roster too much," he said. "We acted like an expansion team, while not having all the treasures and the things of an expansion team."

The Whitecaps started the season winless in their first six games.

Off the field, a group who once played for the Whitecaps' women's team came forward with allegations of abuse and harassment by a former coach nearly a decade earlier.

The club took several weeks to respond and, in the meantime, fans showed their support for the women by staging mass walkouts at home games.

"It was heavy. When you coach the team, you can't separate the team from the club," Dos Santos said. "It affected me to be coaching on the bench against [the Portland Timbers] and at a certain minute ... you see the fans of Portland and our fans leaving. And that's uncomfortable.

You don't want to be in a position like that."

Whitecaps co-owner Jeff Mallett eventually issued an apology on behalf of the club, and said an independent investigation would be done into how the allegations were handled when they were first raised in 2008. The results of that investigation have yet to be released.

In mid-April, Dos Santos's team started to finally come together, snatching a 1-0 home win over the coach's former club, L.A. FC. A promising stretch from May through the end of June saw the Whitecaps go unbeaten in six games.

But after an international break, all of the hard work seemed to fall apart. The Whitecaps lost five games in a row, including a 6-1 setback to L.A.

Throughout the year, the squad struggled to find an offensive spark, tallying just 37 goals. During the summer slump, the stalwart back end that kept the team competitive earlier on seemed to crack and falter, and the Whitecaps were outscored 17-2 across the stretch.

Despite the results, Dos Santos said he was never concerned about his job.

"I know what I signed up to. I know what I gave away to be here, and the owners also know what I gave away to be here," he said.

"I could have been in other places. My friends tell me 'Hey, you gave up an MLS ring probably if LAFC wins it.' No. I wanted to be here. It was sure in my head. I knew the challenge because I wasn't coming to a club where there was a reputation of big spending and always every year being in the playoffs. I wasn't coming to a club like that. So I knew I was coming to a huge challenge."

Still, July was disappointing for the rookie coach.

The Whitecaps were also ousted from the Canadian Championship, where they dropped a 2-1 decision to the Canadian Premier League's Cavalry FC at home.

Behind the scenes, Dos Santos looked to inject fresh talent into his group during July's international transfer window, including some "home runs", such as South Korean striker Hwang Ui-jo, who went on to sign with Bordeaux in France.

A lack of dedicated recruiting staff hampered efforts to bring in new players, the coach said.

"You're seeing all the other clubs every day getting help and their help affects the team right away. And you're on the outside saying '[expletive],' " he said.

"That's why you need soccer people. That's why you need a department that helps you. Because sometimes you don't need home runs."

In August, the Whitecaps announced that the club was eliminating the role of president - held by Bob Lenarduzzi for more than a decade - and launching a global search for a sporting director who would be in charge of the club's technical side.

The post had yet to be filled by season's end, but Dos Santos is confident the new role would be crucial to the team's future.

Still, he's learned that there's no magic wand that will bring on-field results and he's not about to make promises about what his second year will look like.

"For a club to be successful you need all the parts to get together. And that's what I think this year has brought to the Whitecaps," Dos Santos said.

Associated Graphic

Whitecaps coach Marc Dos Santos, seen at a game against the Earthquakes in July, says he expected a challenge when he agreed to lead Vancouver last season. 'I'm not delusional,' he says. 'I don't want to have a second year like that.'


Trump threatens Turkey with sanctions over Syrian attacks
Days after President orders troops out, U.S. calls for an end to invasion of Kurdish territory as Pence heads to region to negotiate ceasefire with Erdogan
Tuesday, October 15, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A1

WASHINGTON -- Targeting Turkey's economy, U.S. President Donald Trump announced sanctions on Monday aimed at restraining the Turkish assault against Kurdish fighters and civilians in Syria - an assault Turkey began after Mr. Trump announced he was moving U.S. troops out of the way.

The United States also called on Turkey to stop the invasion, and Mr. Trump is sending Vice-President Mike Pence to the region in an attempt to begin negotiations. Mr. Pence said Mr. Trump spoke directly to Turkish leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

"President Trump communicated to him very clearly that the United States of America wants Turkey to stop the invasion, implement an immediate ceasefire and to begin to negotiate with Kurdish forces in Syria to bring an end to the violence," Mr. Pence said.

The Americans were scrambling for Syria's exits, a move criticized at home and abroad as opening the door to a resurgence of the Islamic State group, whose violent takeover of Syrian and Iraqi lands five years ago was the reason U.S. forces went there in the first place.

Mr. Trump said the approximately 1,000 U.S. troops who had been partnering with local Kurdish fighters to battle the Islamic State in northern Syria are leaving the country. They will remain in the Middle East, he said, to "monitor the situation" and to prevent a revival of the Islamic State - a goal that even Mr.

Trump's allies say has become much harder as a result of the U.S. pullout.

Turkey began attacks in Syria last week against the Syrian Kurdish fighters, whom Turkey sees as terrorists.

On Monday, Syrian government troops moved north toward the border region, setting up a potential clash with Turkish-led forces.

Mr. Trump said Turkey's invasion is "precipitating a humanitarian crisis and setting conditions for possible war crimes," a reference to reports of Turkish-backed fighters executing Kurdish fighters on the battlefield.

Kurdish forces previously allied with the U.S. said they had reached a deal with President Bashar al-Assad's government to help them fend off Turkey's invasion, a move that brings Russian forces deeper into the conflict.

In his sanctions announcement, Mr. Trump said he was halting trade negotiations with Turkey and raising steel tariffs. He said he would soon sign an order permitting sanctions to be imposed on current and former Turkish officials.

"I am fully prepared to swiftly destroy Turkey's economy if Turkish leaders continue down this dangerous and destructive path," Mr. Trump said.

Meanwhile, the Canadian government has "temporarily suspended new export permits to Turkey," Global Affairs Canada said in a statement on Monday.

"Canada firmly condemns Turkey's military incursion into Syria. This unilateral action risks undermining the stability of an already-fragile region, exacerbating the humanitarian situation and rolling back progress achieved by the Global Coalition Against Daesh, of which Turkey is a member," Global Affairs Canada said.

"We call for the protection of civilians and on all parties to respect their obligations under international law, including unhindered access for humanitarian aid."

American troops consolidated their positions in northern Syria on Monday and prepared to evacuate equipment in advance of a full withdrawal, a U.S. defence official said.

The official, who was not authorized to be quoted by name, said U.S. officials were weighing options for a potential future counter-Islamic State campaign, including the possibility of waging it with a combination of air power and special operations forces based outside of Syria, perhaps in Iraq.

The hurried preparations for a U.S. exit were triggered by Mr.

Trump's decision on Saturday to expand a limited troop pullout into a complete withdrawal.

U.S. Defence Secretary Mark Esper said on Monday that he would travel to NATO headquarters in Brussels next week to urge European allies to impose "diplomatic and economic measures" against Turkey - a fellow NATO ally - for what Mr. Esper called Ankara's "egregious" actions.

Mr. Esper said Turkey's incursion had created unacceptable risk to U.S. forces in northern Syria and "we also are at risk of being engulfed in a broader conflict."

The only exception to the U.S.

withdrawal from Syria is a group of perhaps 200 troops who will remain at a base called Tanf in southern Syria near the Jordanian border along the strategically important Baghdad-to-Damascus highway. Those troops work with Syrian opposition forces unrelated to the Kurdish-led fighters in northern Syria.

Mr. Esper said the U.S. withdrawal would be done carefully to protect the troops and to ensure that no U.S. equipment was left behind. He declined to say how long that might take.

In a series of tweets on Monday, Mr. Trump defended his gamble that pulling U.S. forces out of Syria would not weaken U.S. security and credibility. He took sarcastic swipes at critics who say his Syria withdrawal amounts to a betrayal of the Kurds and plays into the hands of Russia. "Anyone who wants to assist Syria in protecting the Kurds is good with me, whether it is Russia, China, or Napoleon Bonaparte," he wrote. "I hope they all do great, we are 7,000 miles away!"

Mr. Trump has dug in on his decision to pull out the troops, believing it fulfills a key campaign promise and will be a winning issue in the 2020 election, according to White House officials.

This has effectively ended a five-year effort to partner with Syrian Kurdish and Arab fighters to ensure a lasting defeat of IS.

Hundreds of IS supporters escaped a holding camp amid clashes between invading Turkish-led forces and Kurdish fighters, and analysts said an IS resurgence seemed more likely, just months after Mr. Trump declared the extremists defeated.

Republican Senate Leader Mitch McConnell, normally a staunch Trump supporter, said he was "gravely concerned" by events in Syria and Mr. Trump's response so far.

Withdrawing U.S. forces from Syria "would re-create the very conditions that we have worked hard to destroy and invite the resurgence of ISIS," he said in a statement. "And such a withdrawal would also create a broader power vacuum in Syria that will be exploited by Iran and Russia, a catastrophic outcome for the United States' strategic interests."

Associated Graphic

A Syrian soldier waves a flag at Tal Tamr in northeastern Syria on Monday. Syrian forces moved toward the Turkish border after Damascus struck a deal to defend beleagured Kurdish fighters.


A Turkish tank moves along a road toward the country's border with Syria on Monday. U.S. Defence Secretary Mark Esper says Ankara's incursion has created unacceptable risk to U.S. forces in northern Syria.


Thursday, October 17, 2019

A changing of political guard in the Maritimes
Liberal and Conservative heavyweights who built strong personal bases in their ridings now mentor new generation hoping to succeed them
Monday, October 14, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A4

ENFIELD, N.S. -- When 28-year-old political newcomer Kody Blois won the federal Liberal nomination in Kings-Hants in May, he immediately sought the endorsement of former MP Scott Brison.

Mr. Brison, who was unbeatable in this sprawling rural riding outside Halifax for more than 20 years, until his retirement early this year, did more than give him just that. He has canvassed door to door with Mr. Blois, introduced him to the local Liberal base and taught him the art of campaigning in small Maritime towns where family and community connections matter a lot.

Mr. Blois knows well that without Mr. Brison's support, getting to Ottawa would be much more difficult.

"Scott Brison has been my MP since as long as I've been aware of federal politics. ... You can't go anywhere in this riding without running into people who know him. He has so much brand recognition," Mr. Blois said after an all-candidates debate at a local fire hall.

In rural Nova Scotia, loyalty to individual politicians runs deep.

That's true from Kings-Hants to Central Nova, where former Tory cabinet minister Peter MacKay has been helping Conservative candidate George Canyon win over voters surprised at the country star's appointment by the party.

In this election, old-guard politicians across the province, from Bill Casey to Rodger Cuzner to Mark Eyking, are stepping aside to make way for new contenders.

They're quietly guiding the next generation of candidates, passing on decades of experience, while helping them prepare for local debates or introducing them to influential supporters in their ridings.

But they're also wary of inserting themselves too much in local campaigns.

New candidates need to learn things on their own and step out from the shadow of the MP they want to replace, Mr. Cuzner said.

In his riding of Cape Breton-Canso, he's helped where he can, but newcomer Mike Kelloway has also tried to do things his own way, bringing in a younger crop of volunteers to run his campaign.

"We've been around such a long time that a lot of the older volunteers have also said it's time to step back and let some younger people get involved and carry the torch," Mr. Cuzner said. "I'll do what I can to help Mike be successful, but he knows he's got to go out and make his own mark.

He has to find his own way."

Mr. MacKay has introduced Mr.Canyon to the local Conservatives base, offered tips on how to talk policy and has been a behind-the-scenes coach in a riding he served for almost two decades, guiding the rookie through a tight race with Liberal MP Sean Fraser. The riding has traditionally been Mr. MacKay's family fiefdom, with 40 years of representation between himself and his father, Elmer, a Mulroney-era cabinet minister.

Mr. MacKay - whose supporters are reportedly laying the groundwork for a possible Conservative leadership bid - lives in Toronto now, but said he was asked to run for the Tories again in Central Nova. With three kids under six, though, he said the timing wasn't right. Instead, he encouraged Mr. Canyon to run after the local nominee stepped down and the party went looking for a star candidate to drop in.

Not everyone here likes how that happened.

"People think it's a joke. He came second in a singing contest, moved to Nashville or wherever, changed his name and now he's back as a hero," said Candace MacDonald, the owner of a smoking supply store in New Glasgow.

"New Glasgow is a town where you have to stick it out. You can't just parachute in here and expect to win."

But those who dismiss Mr.Canyon as just a country singer who left for Alberta are underestimating his political abilities, Mr.MacKay argues.

"I think he's got a compelling story. He's got a lot more to offer beyond stage presence and a cowboy hat," he said. "I think he's going to surprise people."

The former cabinet minister has leaned on his network of conservatives inside and outside the riding to boost Mr. Canyon's chances. At the opening of the Brian Mulroney Institute of Government last month at St. Francis Xavier University, Mr. MacKay spent the morning introducing the candidate to the crowd of invited guests, which included former Conservative staffers and politicians.

Jim Bickford, a professor of political science at the university, said Mr. Brison's and Mr. MacKay's strong personal followings are unusual in politics. While that influence can fade the longer someone is out of office, people in rural ridings tend to have long memories and remember how a former cabinet minister helped them or their community.

"I think George Canyon will benefit from all those years of building up loyal, Conservative voters," Prof. Bickford said. "Peter has such a strong reputation here, he's very highly regarded ... so if he's involved, that could rally people."

But not everyone is convinced the support of prominent Tories can help Mr. Canyon turn the riding blue again.

"In 2015, the Conservative establishment was also trying to help the local candidate and it didn't make a lick of difference," said Mr. Fraser, the Liberal MP who is seeking re-election.

"People can see through the commentary that this has always been a Conservative riding. I think people here are more openminded than they're given credit for."

In Kings-Hants, Mr. Brison also lent his young protégé his former campaign manager, Dale Palmeter, the architect of Mr. Brison's seven electoral victories in the riding since 1997. Together they won election after election, despite Mr. Brison switching parties and coming out as gay in a traditionally conservative riding.

"Scott treated every election he ran in as if it was his first," Mr.Palmeter said. "In rural communities, people know you or they know your cousin or they know people who know you. They want to see you engage with them."

But Mr. Blois's rivals, including Conservative candidate Martha MacQuarrie and the NDP's Stephen Schneider, see an opportunity with Mr. Brison finally out of the way. Ms. MacQuarrie says voters are angry at what she calls "failing Liberal branding," while Mr. Schneider argues the electorate isn't thrilled about any of the party leaders. With Mr. Brison gone, each believes their party has its best chance in years to win here.

Associated Graphic

A pedestrian walks across the street in New Glasgow, N.S., in the Central Nova riding, where former Conservative MP Peter MacKay is now trying to help country singer George Canyon win a seat.


Wednesday, October 16, 2019


A Monday news story on the federal election races in the Maritimes included an incorrect last name for Jim Bickerton, a professor of political science at St. Francis Xavier University.

Need a small business loan? Here are some tips to help you succeed and traps to avoid
Seeking and obtaining finance can be tricky, but these accountants and entrepreneurs have advice for dealing with banks and lenders
Monday, October 7, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B3

For business owners seeking financing from banks and online lenders, borrowing can be a complicated process. We talked to accountants and entrepreneurs who have done it successfully to glean their top tips.

GETTING STARTED Apply for financing before you desperately need it, advises Angela Richardson, an accountant and partner at Richardson Miller LLP, who works with many small businesses and chairs the board of Alberta Women Entrepreneurs. "Be pro-active. Don't wait until it's painful."

The time it takes to apply for, be approved for and receive the money varies by the lender but ranges from about a week to a month.

Andrew Zakharia, founder of the Toronto-based AZ Accounting Firm, which specializes in small businesses, says once you've decided you want to borrow money, the first step is to compile and prepare your company financial statements. Lenders tend to look at financials for the past two years, Mr. Zakharia says, and may also accept yearto-date figures. (If your business is growing and the financials are more favourable in the current period, it may be a good idea to provide year-to-date figures.)

Mr. Zakharia estimates it takes about one to two months to have financials prepared by an accountant, although it could take longer if your company is several years behind.

Next, explore your options.

While it's tempting to go to the lender promising the easiest process for getting money, Mr.

Zakharia advises caution. "The easier it is to borrow, the higher the cost of borrowing, 100 per cent of the time," he says.

For the lowest rates, he recommends that business owners start by applying to the big banks, then the Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC), then look at alternative lenders.

Most traditional banks are asset-based lenders, meaning small businesses and newer businesses without collateral can face difficulties. Products do exist where loan criteria are based on cash flow, including HSBC's eCredit and BDC's Small Business Loan.

The Canadian Federation of Independent Business surveys members to rate Canada's financial institutions. The most recent report, from 2016, gives credit unions high marks. "Credit unions are often a really good source of lending for small firms, and I think a lot of people forget about them," says Dan Kelly, president of CFIB.

DETERMINE YOUR NEEDS Make sure the financing you're pursuing makes sense for your business, needs and situation, Ms. Richardson advises. She has seen business owners stuck on thinking they need a specific product, when a different offering might make a lot more sense for them.

"What's helpful for people to figure out their financing is a second set of eyes to say 'let's looks at this, let's look at that, what options make sense here?' " Ms. Richardson says.

Jeff Schnurr is chief executive and co-founder of Jaza Energy Inc., a four-year-old Canadian company that builds renewable energy hubs for rural communities in Africa. Customers can use battery packs that are charged at the hubs to power cellphones and lights, rather than kerosene.

Jaza has a small team based in Halifax and employs about 140 people in Tanzania. Getting a loan from a bank was initially a challenge for Jaza, because of its international operations and novel business model.

Mr. Schnurr says Jaza has grown through "an interesting mix of capital," including a loan from the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency, a commercial loan, venture capital and individual equity investments.

Based on his experiences, Mr.

Schnurr recommends businesses have a long-term plan and then fit the right type of capital into that plan. "The wrong type of money can change the trajectory of your entire business," he says.

BE PRO-ACTIVE While banks are introducing quick, online applications for their products, you should understand that those easy applications may not lead to the best offerings. Online loans from banks can come with higher rates than traditional bank loans, because of different lending criteria.

"Online products are often meant to get you money quickly, and therefore [their criteria are] less stringent," Mr. Zakharia says.

"They're higher risk for the bank, and higher risk means higher interest rates." In one instance, Mr. Zakharia says, he filled out an online loan application and was told he was eligible for a product with better terms. Be pro-active and ask about options.

The interest rate for financing can be negotiable. He has seen both banks and online lenders lower a rate from their initial offer after he asked if they could.

Ms. Richardson says that some products come with application fees, which may also be negotiable.

As well, be aware that accountants may receive referral fees for placing a client in a certain product. Mr. Zakharia says accountants face disclosure rules around referral fees.

COMMON BARRIERS TO BORROWING A business owner's personal credit score, as well as a business that is too young, are common barriers Mr. Zakharia sees. "Usually it's at least one year, but preferably two years of history before you can borrow," he says.

Another common issue involves accounts receivable. "A lot of issues usually stem from cash flow," Ms. Richardson says.

Some institutions lend based on accounts receivable, so a business without a good system for tracking and collecting money owed will face challenges.

"People may need to borrow because they need to pay their contractors. But they can't borrow because they haven't got their money from their customers, and they're not good at tracking that. So it's an endless circle of despair," Mr. Zakharia says.

Not having books and records maintained by an accountant may be another barrier. When you are applying for financing from a bank, it will ask for a notice-to-reader, or unaudited, financial statement prepared by an accountant.

While many online lenders don't have this requirement, Mr.Zakharia says it is standard for banks.

"The only way you can access the lower rate and better repayment term loans are with financials from an accountant," Mr.Zakharia says.

Mr. Kelly says if you receive a rejection for financing, you should not interpret that as an across the board "no."

"There are other players out there," he says, adding that under the Small Business Banking Code of Conduct, banks are supposed to explain why they rejected a loan application and also provide information on alternative sources of financing.

Associated Graphic

Andrew Zakharia, founder of the Toronto-based AZ Accounting Firm, seen during a panel discussion at the Globe and Mail Small Business Summit in 2017, says 'the only way you can access the lower rate and better repayment term loans are with financials from an accountant.'


A 'lower-risk' play on the volatile gold sector
With lower costs than miners, precious metals royalty and streaming companies can be a more defensive bet
Special to The Globe and Mail
Wednesday, October 9, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B6

Gold has been glittering this year, signalling that a new bull market for the yellow precious metal could be on the horizon.

The price of gold has surged by about 18 per cent this year amid falling interest rates, trade tensions and slowing global growth.

Comex gold futures rose to a high of US$1,552 an ounce last month before pulling back recently to the low US$1,510 range.

Although gold - a safe haven during uncertain times - and mining stocks can be volatile investments, owning shares of precious metals royalty and streaming companies can be a more defensive bet. Some pay dividends, too.

These companies are a "lowerrisk" play because they have substantially lower costs than miners do, as they don't have to develop and operate mines, says Jon Case, portfolio manager at Sentry Investment Management, a division of Toronto-based CI Investments Inc.

Under their business model, royalty and streaming companies provide upfront cash - an alternative form of financing - to miners in exchange for a percentage of gold or other metals produced typically for the rest of a mine's life.

They can negotiate royalty and/or streaming agreements with miners (or even with oil and gas producers). Royalties are typically paid in cash, while streams usually involve deliveries of the metal or commodity.

As royalty and streaming companies don't operate mines, "you see margins of 70 or 80 per cent versus maybe 30 per cent for a conventional mining company," Mr. Case says.

"When you have bigger margins and the metal price drops, you are less impacted. You have more of a cushion," he adds These players can also benefit if a miner does further exploration that results in the life of a mine being extended, Mr. Case says. "They get that benefit without having to pay upfront for it."

Royalty and streaming companies can differ vastly, too. Toronto-based Franco-Nevada Corp.

(FNV-T), which provides an annual dividend of $1 a share, received 87 per cent of its revenue last year from gold and the rest from energy deals. For Vancouver-based Wheaton Precious Metals Corp. (WPM-T), which has a variable dividend, 56 per cent of its revenue came from gold and 44 per cent from silver.

These larger players also may not be as diversified as they may seem despite owning hundred of royalties and streams. It's possible to have multiple deals on the same mine, and a hiccup at one can affect their cash flow, Mr. Case says.

For example, streaming payments to Wheaton stopped temporarily this year when Denverbased Newmont Goldcorp Corp.

had to suspend operations at its Penasquito mine in Mexico due to local protesters blocking entry to its property.

And miners may have operations in Latin America and Africa, where political conditions can affect operations, he notes. "You can't just blindly buy [these stocks] and expect to own a diversified portfolio that's riskless."

Still, the conventional wisdom is that these companies are a way to invest conservatively in the space, or when metal prices are flat or trending lower, he says. Mr.

Case holds Wheaton in the Sentry fund because it's valued attractively compared with Franco-Nevada, while Sandstorm Gold Ltd.

(SSL-T) of Vancouver is also a "valuation call."

U.S. Global Go Gold and Precious Metal Miners ETF (GOAUA), which produced a return of 46 per cent for the 12 months ended Sept. 30, has a hefty 37 per cent of its assets in royalty and steaming companies. Denver-based Royal Gold Inc. (RGLD-Q), Franco-Nevada and Wheaton are the exchange-traded fund's (ETF) biggest holdings, while Sandstorm and Montreal-based Osisko Gold Royalties Ltd. (OR-T) are also among the top 10 names.

This ETF, which uses a "smart beta" approach, has a heavy weighting in these companies because they meet certain criteria better than others, says Michael Matousek, head trader at San Antonio-based U.S. Global Investors Inc. For example, these could include revenue per employee, gross margins, cash flow and return on investment capital.

Royalty and streaming companies also attract managers of the big equity mutual funds when they want exposure to this space during times of uncertainty, Mr.

Matousek says. "What they like about it is that the revenue stream is very steady - not up and down like a traditional miner. ... In the gold world, it's a safer play."

However, these companies can lag during periods of speculative fever when investors will throw money at junior gold miners whose shares "start to pop in price," he says. If the gold price falls sharply, he notes, these juniors will, too, because they don't tend to have strong financial resources behind them.

Although royalty and streaming companies may not be the top performers during these periods, Mr. Matousek says, "over time they generally work out to be a safer bet."

Rick Rule, president and chief executive at Carlsbad, Calif.based Sprott U.S. Holdings Inc., favours these precious metals players as a good way to participate in a potential gold-equity bull market rather than chasing the juniors with their high production costs and low-profit margins.

A generalist investor should first consider the big royalty and streaming players, which are "more efficient companies with much higher margins, able to withstand downturns better and, surprisingly, are able to grow," Mr.

Rule says.

He dismisses any suggestion that these companies' growth is past them because they have already picked the low-hanging fruits in terms of available deals and that miners won't need financing as their stocks rise in a rallying gold market.

That's because the Basel III accord - a set of reforms introduced in 2009 to improve regulation and risk management in the global banking sector - reduced the ability of financial institutions to provide merger and acquisition as well as project financing to non-investment-grade issuers, he says.

"The lack of availability or high cost of capital to non-investmentgrade mining companies in the next five and 10 years opens the door to literally billions of dollars of transactions for the royalty and streaming companies " Smaller royalty and streaming companies, which trade at a lower earnings multiples, can also be opportunities, Mr. Rule says.

"There is the potential that the small guys could develop a big enough inventory that they become meaningful to the big ones."

They could be takeover candidates or enjoy a "re-rating," whereby investors are willing to pay a higher price in anticipation of higher future earnings, he says.

Associated Graphic

Miners may have operations in Latin America, such as this Vale facility in Brazil, where political conditions can affect operations.


Following the automaker's release of a special-edition Mini for its anniversary, Mark Richardson revisits the history of one of Britain's most popular cars and explores what makes it so special
Special to The Globe and Mail
Friday, October 18, 2019 – Print Edition, Page D1

CAMBRIDGE, ENGLAND -- Here in Britain, it seems you can't even glance at the road without seeing a Mini. They're everywhere. Mini Cooper, Mini Countryman, Mini Clubman, coupe or convertible, front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive, three-door or even six-door with every combination in between.

"It's like every other car's a Mini, isn't it?" said my aunt, suddenly noticing the little car's prevalence. Which she did because my aunt, who is not a car person, was sitting in a Mini at the time.

Not just any Mini, but the special-edition 60th anniversary Mini, parked in her driveway after a run to the shopping centre.

She was in the front passenger seat while my wife was squeezed into the rear, and my aunt was thinking about the Minis of her day, back when I was a kid.

Those original Minis, first built in 1959 as a British reaction to the high fuel prices spurred by the Suez Crisis, were apparently designed to fit in a box 10 feet by four feet by four feet (three metres by 1.2 metres x 1.2 metres).

These modern Minis are bigger because that's how we like them now. The smallest three-door is 3.84 metres long, and they stretch all the way to the 4.31 metres of the Countryman, which is known, unofficially, as the Maxi.

We're in the smallest threedoor, and my very British aunt is waxing nostalgic for the 1960s.

The original Mini was a pretty basic vehicle back then: room (just) for four close friends, and a tiny little trunk with its hinge at the bottom rather than the top. This allowed the trunk to be folded down and left open when extra cargo space was needed. Space inside was expanded by having 10-inch wheels pushed to the far corners, and even sliding windows that allowed thinner doors, widening the interior.

That early Mini was popular, but sales really took off when the Beatles, London supermodel Twiggy and Princess Margaret and Lord Snowden, among many others, were seen in Minis. Its "go-kart handling" won rallies throughout the sixties and was promoted in the 1969 movie The Italian Job. Its all-round cuteness and quirkiness set it apart from more conventionally sized cars.

Eventually, however, time ran out on its rudimentary engineering and tiny size, and the "classic" Mini was discontinued in 2000.

More than five million had been sold, mostly in its first 20 years of production. But BMW owned the rights to the Mini name and design through its control of the Rover Group, and its engineers set about creating a new Mini.

That rebirthed car appeared the following year as a 2002 model and was totally redesigned. It kept some of the funky features, such as the large, round speedometer in the centre of the dash with toggle switches underneath, and it added fun features to make the car seem friendly and fresh. It was an immediate hit. It helped that The Italian Job was remade in 2003 and showed the little cars in a sexy new light.

The "new" Mini Cooper is now in its third generation, but sales have slipped recently. In the past year, as of September, sales around the world dropped 1.8 per cent to 261,000 vehicles.

In Canada, sales dropped 12 per cent, to 4,655 cars. Such peaks and troughs are not uncommon, though, as buyers wait for new models to be introduced. There's already a plug-in hybrid Mini Countryman available, and an allelectric Mini Cooper will be introduced in Europe next month.

My aunt, however, is more preoccupied with this 60th anniversary Mini, which sells in Canada for about $5,000 to $7,000 more than the cost of a regular Mini Cooper or Cooper S, which normally starts at $23,000 and rises to the low $30,000s. It has "60th" badges inside and out, and is clearly a premium edition, with soft leather seating and a pinstriped front fascia. There's an impressive LED puddle light that projects the logo on the ground when you open the doors, and the 17-inch wheels are way larger than those 10-inch originals. But it's the colour that's most important: British Racing Green, with twin hood stripes. Back in the day, all British race cars were green, so Minis had stripes on them to make them stand out on the track.

Those early Minis were immediately successful as rally cars, owing to their peppy little engines, light weight and the pushed-out wheelbase. British race car maker John Cooper began tuning them in 1961 and his versions became the Mini Cooper; today, the John Cooper Works Minis are the most powerful editions, creating more than 300 horsepower from their twin power turbo engines - more than twice the output of a base 134 hp Cooper. The JCWs are not Mr.

Bean cars.

Aunt Diane's husband, my uncle Bill who died 20 years ago, was a keen rally driver in his day, but he never raced Minis. At well more than six feet tall, he just couldn't fit in them. "I think he'd fit in this one though," Diane said, stretching her legs out while my wife pulled in hers behind. "I think he'd do everything he could to fit himself in. Does the top come off?" It does, but not on the 60th anniversary specials. They're only available as three-door or fivedoor hardtops. This three-door has enough space for the three of us with some room to spare for a fourth person, but even so, Diane got out of the Mini and let my wife stretch her legs. She stood in the driveway and just looked for a while at the car parked there, something she's never felt inclined to do before. "Can you leave it here for a few days?" she asked.

"Bill would have been so proud."

Associated Graphic

The special-edition 60th anniversary Mini sports 17-inch wheels and a British Racing Green exterior, with standout twin hood stripes.

In Ontario's Prince Edward County, more than 300 Minis gather for October's fifth annual Mini Invasion, where owners can meet and bond over their cars.


The special-edition 60th anniversary Mini, which is pricier than the cost of a regular Cooper or Cooper S, has soft leather seating and pinstriped front fascia. In Britain, sales of the early Mini took off when the Beatles, including member Paul McCartney, seen below in 1967, were seen riding the cars.


Taking Twitter back from the trolls
New book from Andrew Marantz outlines our initial hopes for social media, its descent into abuse and disinformation, and how we can change the conversation for the better
Saturday, October 12, 2019 – Print Edition, Page R11

It all seemed so promising.

When social-media services such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube launched more than a decade ago, billions bought into their promise of a techno-utopia: people brought together in a worldwide conversation, unleashing their creativity and potential, free to say anything to a global audience, unrestricted by media gatekeepers. But over the past few years, the online world has turned into a nightmare of abuse, incitement to violence and viral disinformation.

New Yorker staff writer Andrew Marantz spent three years chronicling what he calls the Big Swinging Brains who created the online platforms, as well as the meme-makers, the Redditors, the disinformation artists and others who have exploited those platforms to sow chaos in the name of cynicism and profit.

The Globe spoke with him by phone shortly before the Oct. 7 publication of his Anti-Social: Online Extremists, Techno-Utopians, and the Hijacking of the American Conversation.

You note in your book - and a recent TED Talk - that one of the problems with social-media platforms is their algorithms are built to optimize for what are known as "high-arousal emotions," which is why content that makes people angry or anxious or fearful is engaged with more often, shared more widely, than nuanced content that, say, makes people think deeply. What should they be built for?

Broadly, I think what you want is some system that values things like truth and civic virtue, and the constructive aspect of community rather than the destructive aspect, and the pursuit of knowledge rather than a corrosive descent into animosity and polarization. I'm not saying it's easy. I'm just saying it's necessary if we want our democracies to survive.

No offence, but that doesn't sound very cool. Of course, you write in the book about your own struggle to accept that, while it's cool to be a rebel and anti-establishment, there are important reasons for old-fashioned virtues, such as the journalistic standards to which The New Yorker adheres - which sometimes prevent its content from going viral.

There are some things that are just definitionally uncool, and reaffirming and reinscribing the basic norms of your society is always going to be one of those things. So, when I'm hanging around a bunch of goons and crypto-white-nationalists and thugs and weirdos, when I have this feeling that they are being really disruptive and uncivil and racist, and when my impulse is to push back by saying, "Hey, guys, don't you realize that it's nice for everyone to get along?" I just automatically sound like Mr. Rogers. It's very hard for me to be the edgy or cool one in that situation, even though I'm right.

And even though you're from Brooklyn and, therefore, automatically cool.

Exactly! But the thing is, a lot of these other people are from Brooklyn, too. [Proud Boys founder and Rebel Media contributor] Gavin McInnes invented hipsterdom, and he has way cooler facial hair than I ever will.

It just so happens that his ideas are atrocious. I can't really claim to beat him in the cool race. I just have to kind of try to hope that my ideas can out-compete his in the marketplace of ideas. But one of the main problems that the book tackles is that the marketplace of ideas is broken. And arguably always has been. So you can't just rely on the better ideas automatically winning.

There's a central tension at the heart of your project. The trolls such as Gavin McInnes - and some of his colleagues at Canada's Rebel Media, as well as other highly partisan sites, some of which are bad-faith actors peddling unfounded conspiracy theories - literally profit off of attention. But one of the tenets of free speech and journalism is that if you expose noxious ideas to attention and rigorous analysis, they collapse: As the saying goes, sunlight is the best disinfectant.

But what do you do when you realize sunlight also helps viruses grow?

Exactly. Yeah, I think "Sunlight is the best disinfectant" is exactly the kind of platitude that if you take it as dogma, it leads you astray.

Yet if we don't study this stuff, we're not prepared to fight it. But your overwhelming point is that to give them attention gives them oxygen and capital and life.

Yeah, absolutely.

How do you square that?

I don't think it's really squareable. I think you have to be rigorous about knowing what you're talking about. But it's also the case that you can write an article that's composed entirely of true facts, that is still missing the larger point.

Or it could be the case that you're writing an article, when the better thing to do is not to write an article at all.

That same tension plays out every single day - certainly every single hour that your President tweets.

Or whenever any troll tweets.

And there are a lot of people who make their livelihood doing this.

[Trump] makes his livelihood through, you know, crime. But they make their livelihood through trolling and there's just a basic tension where, to rebuke the trolls, to correct them, to respond to them in any way is to let them win. To ignore them is kind of like ceding the point to them, which means they also win. So I don't see a great way out.

Twitter itself could help solve some of these problems. Because [the company is] creating the incentives: financial and attentional and psychological. They are creating the conditions that make people behave this way. It's not just happening at random.

It calls to mind that famous line from the movie Wargames, where the computer plays a million simulations of nuclear war in preparation to launch a real attack, and then stops suddenly and says: 'A strange game. The only winning move is not to play.' Well, yes. Except that by co-inhabiting their informational ecosystem and just sort of ignoring [the trolls] or watching them silently - you're still playing their game.

You're just allowing them to run the board. I just think we need to build a system that's based on better premises, that is a different kind of game.

This interview has been edited and condensed.

Associated Graphic

Author Andrew Marantz says the Proud Boys group, seen at a Portland rally last year, and its founder have 'atrocious' views, but ignoring them won't stem their influence.


Zombieland's Eisenberg says he might still be part Zuckerberg, but hides it well
Special to The Globe and Mail
Thursday, October 17, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A17

In 2002, Jesse Eisenberg was 19 and looked 12. Roger Dodger, his first film, was coming out and the actor met with me at the Johnny Rockets in Times Square for an interview. In that film, he played a naive young man opposite a morally corrupt mentor played by Campbell Scott, and that performance sent Eisenberg on his way to The Squid and the Whale, The Social Network and Zombieland, whose sequel opens this Friday. Today, Eisenberg is 36, has mounted a play with Vanessa Redgrave and oscillates between independent and commercial pictures. Through it all, he's retained his sense of humour and even keel, even if Hollywood trappings cause him a bit of unease. The actor and I caught up before the opening of Zombieland: Double Tap.

It's cool that you've stayed the same since we first met. I don't even think you bought a new pair of shoes. You really are that sweet, bumbling guy you play in exactly half of your films. But I know being recognized isn't easy.

It gets easier. I've gotten a little more used to it and strangers approaching me, 99.99 per cent of the time the interactions are nice, even interesting. I get to meet people I wouldn't otherwise.

Right. But I saw you in Toronto get recognized and kind of duck from the fans, and then reconsider the interaction and go back and let them take a picture. Don't lie. I saw that it took effort.

I only got into acting because I had problems in school and wanted another outlet. It could've been anything, but the thing I excelled in and struck me as interesting was doing theatre, it took my mind off of school.

So the public part of your personal journey ... It's not entirely comfortable or natural, but I always remind myself of the article in the Onion about the guy from The Sopranos going into the pizzeria every day and getting a free slice, and remind myself that I'm lucky - I can get a free slice of pizza, and if I find myself getting irritated I remember: free pizza.

Why do you think Zombieland works?

They created these characters that you don't see in these kinds of movies, the self-aware, unheroic and upset sort of guy who struggles through social interactions even in the context of an apocalyptic world. And it's funny, too.

Your movies flip between artsy and commercial. What do you use as a metric of success? I know you're not chasing fame and fortune, but I'm sure it matters to you that people see your movies.

You always find the ideal experience in the most unlikely places. Earlier this year, I made The Art of Self-Defense and it was sometimes difficult to film, but creatively my ideal experience, in the sense of that the tone and the characters were aligned with my tastes. With a movie like Zombieland, where we have time to shoot and the other actors are wonderful and we're all creatively on the same page, that's also enjoyable, if exercising different muscles. But after Zombieland wrapped I spent six months alone writing a book for Audible, and it was enjoyable being alone every day. It's an audiobook, in that you're listening to all the characters over the course of 30 years. It's not exactly like a play. The characters aren't speaking about themselves. It's a book, but it's read out loud. I'm excited and it's fun to do, but I know I get to do these things because of the advantages of being in movies.

Tell me one thing that will make me love Woody Harrelson even more than I already do.

The real truth about Woody is that he plays a lot of laid-back characters and has a reputation for certain things that make you think he's not like the hardest working guy, but he's the only person I know who shows up on set with alternative scenes written with 17 different ideas with how to play the scene. And the irony is, he plays these characters that are laid-back, but the perception people have of him is much different than how he really is.

The role you may be most closely identified with is that of Mark Zuckerberg. Do you need to distance yourself from that performance or was that bringing some part of you out in the open? What I'm saying is: How close is the real you to the jerk you played as Zuckerberg?

One of the joys of acting is that you rarely get to live out the bad parts of yourself or live out the parts that would talk back to people, be disrespectful, borderline arrogant, all of that stuff that I imagine all people want to do and you don't do in civil discourse - it's inappropriate. But, when you get to do a role where you're asked to play those aspects of yourself, it's exhilarating.

If I had to put on a Jesse Eisenberg movie night, I'd play Adventureland, Zombieland and The Social Network. But are those movies also your favourites? Did you feel something special on set?

It's hard to know when you're knee-deep in something, whatever you're doing you think it's the greatest thing ever and you're just focusing on the minutiae of the day. My judgment is so skewed and anyways, I don't watch myself.

You never saw Adventureland?

I've watched some of some of those movies you mentioned, but I haven't for a long time. I only see them as presentations of mistakes. I have a skewed filter. Like, you know how when you go on vacation and take 100 pictures and only like two or three? That's how I feel. Like, the rest of the pictures, you're mortified. I feel like I'm proud of 1 or 2 per cent of my movies. The rest just leave me mortified.

Be easy on yourself. When are you going to settle down and have kids?

I did! I have a child, he's 3. I married Anna, who you met.

Oh my God. I remember.

Yeah, our son is healthy and things, I think things are pretty good. You always have to be a little cautious, but I feel good.

I really hope you like the new film.

This interview has been condensed and edited Zombieland: Double Tap opens Oct. 18

Second whistle-blower in Trump's Ukraine call steps forward
Monday, October 7, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A1

WASHINGTON -- A second whistle-blower has come forward with information about U.S. President Donald Trump's dealings with Ukraine, adding to the impeachment peril engulfing the White House and potentially providing new leads to Democrats in their unfurling investigation of Mr.Trump's conduct.

Lawyer Mark Zaid, who represents both whistle-blowers, said the second person has spoken to the intelligence community's internal watchdog and can corroborate information in the original whistleblower complaint.

That document alleged that Mr. Trump pushed Ukraine's President to investigate Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden's family, prompting a White House cover-up. Crucially, the new whistle-blower works in the intelligence field and has "firsthand knowledge" of key events, Mr.Zaid said.

The emergence of the second whistleblower threatened to undermine arguments from Mr. Trump and his allies to discredit the original complaint. They have called it politically motivated, claimed it was filed improperly and dismissed it as unreliable because it was based on secondhand or thirdhand information.

A rough transcript of Mr. Trump's call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, released by the White House, has already corroborated the complaint's central claim that Mr. Trump sought to pressure Ukraine to investigate the Bidens.

The push came even though there was no evidence of wrongdoing by the former vice-president or his son Hunter, who served on the board of a Ukrainian gas company.

Text messages from State Department officials revealed other details, including that Ukraine was promised a visit with Mr. Trump if the government would agree to investigate the 2016 election and Ukrainian gas company Burisma - the outline of a potential quid pro quo.

Representative Jim Himes of Connecticut, a member of the House intelligence committee, said word of a second whistleblower indicates a larger shift inside the government.

"The President's real problem is that his behaviour has finally gotten to a place where people are saying, 'Enough,' " Mr.Himes said.

Democrats have zeroed in on the State Department in the opening phase of their impeachment investigation. The Intelligence, Oversight and Foreign Affairs committees have already interviewed Kurt Volker, a former special envoy to Ukraine who provided the text messages. At least two other witnesses are set for depositions this week: Gordon Sondland, the U.S. ambassador to the European Union, and Marie Yovanovitch, who was abruptly ousted as the U.S. ambassador to Ukraine in May.

Mr. Trump and his supporters deny that he did anything improper, but the White House has struggled to come up with a unified response. No administration officials appeared on the Sunday news shows to defend the President, while other Republicans focused mainly on attacking Democrats. A few Republicans suggested that Mr. Trump was only joking this past week when he publicly called on China to investigate the Bidens.

Republican Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, one of Mr. Trump's most vocal backers, provided perhaps the strongest defense of the President. He said there was nothing wrong with Mr.

Trump's July conversation with Mr. Zelensky and that the accusation looks like a "political setup." As for Mr. Trump, rather than visiting his nearby golf course in Sterling, Va., for a second day, he stayed at the White House, where he tweeted and retweeted, with the Bidens a main target.

"The great Scam is being revealed!" Mr.Trump wrote at one point, continuing to paint himself as the victim of a "deep state" and hostile Democrats.

As the President often does when he feels under attack, he trumpeted his strong support among Republican voters.

He kept lashing out at Utah Senator Mitt Romney, one of the few Republicans who has publicly questioned Mr. Trump's conduct.

"The Democrats are lucky that they don't have any Mitt Romney types," Mr.Trump wrote, painting the 2012 GOP presidential nominee as a traitor to his party.

Mr. Romney tweeted recently that Mr.Trump's "brazen and unprecedented appeal to China and to Ukraine" for an investigation of Mr. Biden is "wrong and appalling."

The July call raised questions about whether Mr.Trump held back near US$400-million in critical American military aid to Ukraine as leverage for a Burisma investigation. Hunter Biden served on the board of Burisma at the same time his father was leading the Obama administration's diplomatic dealings with Ukraine. Although the timing raised concerns among anti-corruption advocates, there has been no evidence of wrongdoing by either Biden.

A leading candidate for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination, Mr. Biden wrote in the Washington Post that he had a message for Mr. Trump and "those who facilitate his abuses of power. ... Please know that I'm not going anywhere.

You won't destroy me, and you won't destroy my family."

Additional details about the origins of Mr. Trump's July 25 call with Mr. Zelensky emerged on the weekend.

Energy Secretary Rick Perry had encouraged Mr. Trump to speak with the Ukrainian leader, but on energy and economic issues, according to Mr. Perry's spokeswoman Shaylyn Hynes. She said Mr.

Perry's interest in Ukraine is part of U.S.

efforts to boost Western energy ties to Eastern Europe.

Mr. Trump, who has repeatedly described his conversation with Mr. Zelensky as "perfect," told House Republicans on Friday night that it was Mr. Perry who teed up the July call, according to a person familiar with Mr. Trump's comments who was granted anonymity to discuss them. The person said Mr. Trump did not suggest that Mr. Perry had anything to do with the pressure to investigate the Bidens.

As the furor over Mr. Trump's phone call and the House's subsequent impeachment inquiry escalated, two Republicans challenging Mr. Trump for the GOP presidential nomination engaged in a heated on-air debate over what should happen to the President. The exchange between former representatives Mark Sanford of South Carolina and Joe Walsh of Illinois was notable, given the refusal of all but three Republican senators to criticize Mr. Trump's conduct.

Mr. Walsh said the President deserves to be impeached. Mr. Sanford tried to make the case that moving forward with impeachment in the Democratic-run House if the Republican-controlled Senate doesn't have the votes to convict would be counterproductive. "This President needs to be impeached, just based on what he himself has said," Mr. Walsh said. "And Republicans better get behind that."

Associated Graphic

U.S. President Donald Trump, seen at the White House on Friday, has come under increased scrutiny as a second whistle-blower has stepped forward with information about Mr. Trump's dealings with Ukraine.


Trump's fast-tracking of oil pipelines runs into legal roadblocks
Thursday, October 10, 2019 – Print Edition, Page B3

NEW YORK -- The Trump administration's effort to cut red tape and speed up major energy projects has backfired in the case of the three biggest U.S. pipelines now planned or under construction.

All three have been stalled by successful legal challenges by environmental groups alleging the administration failed to apply the regulatory scrutiny required under the law.

The administration tried to accelerate permits for two multibillion-dollar natural gas lines and jump-start the long-stalled Keystone XL crude oil pipeline that would start in Canada. Judges halted construction on all three over the past two years, ruling the administration granted permits without conducting adequate studies or providing enough alternatives to protect endangered species or national forests.

The delays have caused the two giant gas pipelines - Dominion Energy Inc.'s Atlantic Coast and EQM Midstream Partners LP's Mountain Valley - to increase their cost estimates by hundreds of millions of dollars, according to the companies. The Atlantic Coast pipeline may never be completed unless the U.S. Supreme Court overturns a lower-court decision blocking its planned route, analysts said.

Lawsuits alleging regulatory lapses are not new, but they were unsuccessful during the administration of Mr. Trump's predecessor, Barack Obama. Plaintiffs lost five separate lawsuits alleging regulatory failures during Obama's administration, according to a review of court filings for major interstate gas pipes built since 2010.

"Environmental groups definitely have been going after these pipelines more aggressively," said Amy Vazquez, Houston-based partner at the law firm of Jones Walker, who specializes in energy litigation. "It's probably because they're having a fair bit of success."

The White House declined to comment. An Energy Department spokeswoman did not comment on the litigation, but said the administration remains committed to streamlining energy infrastructure development.

D.J. Gerken, senior attorney with the Southern Environmental Law Center in Asheville, N.C., represented the Sierra Club and other environmental groups in cases challenging the Atlantic Coast pipeline. He said the administration's rush to help industry move faster invited the legal challenges.

"Pressure from the utilities that stand to benefit from this project and the Trump administration produced flawed permits," he said.

In the case of Dominion's 966 kilometre Atlantic Coast gas pipeline, from West Virginia to North Carolina, the U.S. Forest Service originally expressed skepticism about the project in 2016 when Mr. Obama was president, requesting alternative designs. But after Mr. Trump took office, the Forest Service changed course, and issued permits and a waiver for the line to cross the Appalachian Trail on national forestland in Virginia.

Petitioners including the Sierra Club, an environmental advocacy organization, sued the Forest Service, alleging the agency violated three federal acts in issuing a construction permit.

In December 2018, the U.S.

Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals vacated the Forest Service decisions, with Justice Stephanie Thacker noting in her ruling that "the Forest Service's serious environmental concerns that were suddenly, and mysteriously, assuaged in time to meet a private pipeline company's deadlines."

The court said the Forest Service lacked authority to allow Dominion to build across the Appalachian Trail, which is administered by the Department of Interior. The Forest Service declined to comment.

In July, in another Atlantic Coast case brought by groups including the Sierra Club and Defenders of Wildlife, the Fourth Circuit vacated a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service permit. Chief Justice Roger Gregory ruled that the agency, in "fast-tracking" decisions, lost sight of its mandate to protect threatened species.

Atlantic Coast's original cost estimate of US$6-billion to US$6.5-billion has risen to US$7billion to US$7.5-billion, the company said. The projected completion has shifted to late 2021.

The U.S. Supreme Court in October agreed to hear the Appalachian Trail case and could overrule the decision halting construction across that route.

Dominion has stopped construction on the pipe since December, 2018. Spokesman Aaron Ruby said the company is confident the high court will rule in its favour and "uphold the longstanding precedent allowing pipeline crossings of the Appalachian Trail."

The Fourth Circuit appeals court also stopped work on EQM's 488-km Mountain Valley gas pipe from West Virginia to Virginia in June, 2018, agreeing with the Sierra Club and other plaintiffs that permits issued by the Army Corps violated West Virginia rules related to stream crossings.

The state has since altered its rules, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is in the process of issuing new permits for this pipeline and Atlantic Coast. But the Sierra Club is still challenging a Fish and Wildlife Service permit in a case that also is being heard by the Fourth Circuit.

EQM originally expected to complete Mountain Valley by the end of 2018 at a cost of US$3.5-billion. The company said publicly that it expected the pipeline, which is mostly complete, will cost up to US$5-billion and enter service in mid-2020.

Diana Charletta, chief operating officer at EQM, said that recent court decisions "have brought uncertainty and a high-level of scrutiny to the agencies' decisions."

Officials at both Dominion and EQM dispute that approvals were fast-tracked. Dominion pointed out that it filed its application to build Atlantic Coast in 2014.

"I don't think any person can look at the regulatory review process for Atlantic Coast pipeline and say that it was fasttracked," said Mr. Ruby, the Dominion spokesman.

TC Energy Corp's US$8-billion Keystone XL pipeline, originally blocked by Mr. Obama in 2015, was revived by Mr. Trump in 2017 with the issuance of a presidential permit for the line, which would ship crude from Canada to the U.S. Gulf Coast.

Federal Judge Brian Morris in Montana blocked work on the pipe in November, 2018, citing a lack of due diligence by federal regulators regarding greenhouse gas emissions and Native American land rights.

The Trump administration tried to circumvent that ruling by rescinding its original presidential permit and issuing a new one in March. That second permit now faces legal challenges from Native American groups.

TC Energy said it continues to monitor U.S. legal and regulatory issues while it plans construction.

"We are committed to Keystone XL as it remains an important project for our company and for North America," said Terry Cunha, spokesman for TC Energy.

Canadian producer Suncor Energy said in early September that the uncertain U.S. political landscape makes it unclear that the pipeline will be built. "That's one a lot of people are doing soulsearching about right now," Suncor CEO Mark Little said.

Toronto pushes for greener condos
City reaches out to builders to join sustainability partnership
Friday, October 18, 2019 – Print Edition, Page H6

TORONTO -- When Oxford Properties breaks ground on The Hub, a 57-storey office tower located near the foot of Bay Street next to Toronto's venerable Harbour Commission building, the OMERS-owned development giant will embarking on what it claims will become the first "net zero" office tower in Canada.

Set to open in 2024, the glass and column high rise, designed by London-based Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners, will feature a full suite of emission-reduction systems, including triple glazed windows, LED lighting, roof-top solar and a "dedicated outdoor air" system that uncouples the heating and cooling mechanisms from the ventilation network, an efficiency-boosting approach to standard HVAC (heating, ventilation and air conditioning).

Darryl Neate, Oxford's director of sustainability, says the designers are also scouting around for other savings, including recycling waste heat and even the purchase of carbon offsets. Oxford aims to have The Hub, which is part of a Canadian Green Building Council carbon pilot project, certified as a LEED Platinum building.

Such projects will help the City of Toronto make good on a voluntary plan announced by Mayor John Tory earlier this month to work with large land owners and developers to accelerate their energy savings and emission reductions by establishing five-year targets. By most estimates, buildings account for about 40 per cent of all carbon emissions from human sources.

The "Green Will" partnership so far involves several of the city's largest landowners, with a combined footprint of more than 300 million square feet. The list includes the city, Toronto Community Housing, universities, hospitals, school boards as well as private developers such as Oxford, Cadillac Fairview and Brookfield.

But when Mr. Tory announced the plan, which calls for benchmarking, auditing and retrofit capital planning, the list of participants didn't include condo developers and apartment building operators, such as Tridel, Greenwin Inc. or Shiplake Properties. (Oxford's portfolio includes some mixed-use multiunit residential buildings.)

In an interview, Mr. Tory says he's continuing to reach out to apartment building companies, and also hopes to enlist the thousands of small landlords who own low-rise commercial structures, such as medical arts buildings, a category he describes as the "toughest" to reach.

And while the Green Will strategy aims to demonstrate the city's leadership, Scarborough Councillor Jennifer McKelvie says, it's clear that one other large category of property owners is conspicuously missing from the plan: homeowners.

"When you think of where the carbon is in buildings, it is largely in the existing stock," says Corey McBurney, president of EnerQuality, a third-party certification organization that works with developers and auditors to verify the energy efficiency ratings of new residential buildings in Ontario. "What are we doing to lower [homeowners'] carbon footprint? To date, we haven't done nearly enough."

His point highlights one of several obstacles in the city's attempt to accelerate its decarbonization goals over the next 20 to 30 years, and also reveals the very different approaches to energy efficiency management employed by different categories of property owners and builders.

In general, the Ontario Building Code and the recently updated Toronto Green Standard have set a fairly high bar for new buildings. All new development applications submitted after May, 2018, have had to meet the first tier of the green standard, which requires the dwelling to be 15 per cent more energy efficient than what's specified in the OBC.

Builders who voluntarily exceed that target can qualify for various financial incentives, such as development charge reductions.

But these codes have little to say about how property owners manage the carbon performance of existing buildings. Some asset managers, especially large office developers such as Brookfield, have been aggressive in recent years in driving down energy consumption, using a range of emerging technologies, including building automation systems.

The savings go to the bottom line.

Firms such as Oxford even tie their managers' compensation packages to meeting or exceeding energy reduction targets. "It's about holding people accountable for results," Mr. Neate says.

Mr. McBurney says a growing number of homebuilders now design dwellings to meet the EnergyStar rating, which requires a home to be 20 per cent more efficient than the OBC. About half of all new homes now carry the rating, he adds, noting that EnerQuality recently extended this certification to multiunit highrise buildings.

With homeowners and small contractors, however, the story is quite different, with a far larger range of results. Some poorly designed home renovations or rebuilds can boost energy consumption, or do little more than meet the building code requirements. Others feature all sorts of energy efficiency or renewable energy features, from tankless electric hot-water heaters to rooftop solar systems.

While Ms. McKelvie notes that Toronto offers loans for such projects, she feels there should be more incentives available, and adds that the city could also be doing more to facilitate such investments, for example by providing homeowners with information on how to do group purchases of roof-top solar systems in order to reduce prices.

Mr. Tory added that his office has reached out to large Canadian financial institutions about developing new lending instruments, such as "green mortgages," which offer reduced terms for borrowers investing in home energy retrofits. He was recently in London, talking to British bankers about such products. "There's huge interest there in financial projects to help with green projects," he says.

The hesitant homeowner problem could take a turn after the federal election. In an interesting ideological alignment, all four major parties are promising various inducements, including $40,000 interest-free home energy retrofit loans (Liberals), a 20per-cent tax credit on "green" improvements worth up to $3,800 on a $20,000 project (Conservatives) and low-interest loans with repayment terms tied to energy savings (NDP and Greens).

Reflecting on what he describes as the "voluntary collaboration" model that underpins initiatives such as Mr. Tory's Green Will program, Mr. McBurney describes these efforts as "positive," but doubts they are sufficient, given council's goal of accelerating the city's emissionreduction targets in light of a worsening climate crisis. As he says, "I wonder if the city will take an even tougher line."

This article is part of an occasional series about recent advances in sustainable design and construction.

Associated Graphic

Oxford Properties is aiming to have its forthcoming Toronto office tower The Hub certified as a LEED Platinum building.


The Hub, seen in a rendering in downtown Toronto, will feature a full suite of emission-reduction systems, including triple glazed windows, LED lighting and roof-top solar panels.

Vision of a denser downtown
Two Toronto architects suggest a better use for an underused parcel of land along one of city's subway lines
Friday, October 11, 2019 – Print Edition, Page H2

TORONTO -- I already knew better.

But, as a new retail/residential building owner on the Danforth, I felt I should attend the community meeting, especially since it concerned a proposal for a rental apartment that was going to kiss my eastern wall.

And, as suspected, every single person who raised a concern questioned its height, even though the building in question would reach only seven storeys.

Oh, yes, there was the one lady who grilled the developers on what they were going to do about overcrowding on the subway.

Not one attendee asked about the pedestrian experience, about the building's retail at grade, or what things (if any) the developer would give back to the community.

This, architect Naama Blonder says, is par for the course. As a new Torontonian - she arrived from Tel Aviv with husband Misha Bereznyak, also an architect, five years ago so he could complete his master's degree - with a keen interest in the development scene, she attends community development meetings all the time.

"Every time I hear this discussion about height," she begins, clearly frustrated, "I just wish I could shift the discussion to the things that matter."

We're standing on the southwestern corner of Bloor Street West and St. Helens Avenue, a light mist covering everything in dewdrops. To further illustrate her point, she points east, where construction cranes dot the horizon: "Let's look around, and you will tell me if you know if that's a 30-storey building, or 33, or 29," she says. "The discussion should be on the public realm - that is what we should push for."

It is, indeed. We should also push for density where it makes sense, such as on top of subway lines like the Bloor-Danforth (now known as "Line 2"). From where we're standing, Lansdowne station is 200 metres away and Dundas West station is 750 metres. Ms. Blonder and Mr.

Bereznyak's freshly minted company, in fact, is called "Smart Density" because the thirtysomething couple want to make that their life's work. To that end, they've completed an unsolicited study of the "under-utilized" parcel of land on the southwestern corner of Bloor/St. Helens to shine a spotlight on what could be done.

It's an interesting candidate: A Value Village thrift store sits surrounded by an asphalt ocean that wouldn't look out of place in Scarborough. While singlefamily homes line St. Helens to the east and spread south, to the west are GO train tracks and a 15-storey apartment tower (and further west is the changing landscape of the formerly industrial Sterling Avenue); to the north are low-rise, factory-type buildings. Because Bloor Street dips down to allow for the tracks to pass overhead, the site sits on an unintentional concrete plinth, which creates a desolate, wind-swept plaza. Pedestrians, as they submerge, seem to quicken their pace as they walk beside the three-metre wall towering over them.

More interesting: Scheduled to open in five years is a new GO station that will carry commuters all the way north to Barrie, and 500 metres away is the West Toronto Railpath, a cycling and walking trail that may be extended south to Liberty Village.

The couple, both in the process of becoming registered planners, propose a number of things. First of all, by using the guidelines already set for heights and angular planes at the old Honest Ed's site, they propose two towers, a north tower of between 23 and 29 storeys, and a south tower of between 19 and 26 storeys. These would occupy the eastern three-quarters of the site and allow for a long, linear park on the western portion to greet GO users as they get on and off the train. Inviting retail, such as coffee shops or boutiques, would face the park, and the buildings themselves would cradle a protected green space for residents.

The concrete wall facing the Bloor sidewalk would be opened up to house less impulsive retail, such as a grocery store (that is, something people need rather than want, although one could argue that coffee is a need), and cycling infrastructure could be built to cross Bloor and link up with the West Toronto Railpath.

"That's why we love this example so much," Ms. Blonder says. "When you have a larger site, it has a little bit of meat ... you get to really shape a little piece of the city."

It's a city the new parents have grown to love deeply in their short time here, as much for its growth potential as for its odd quirks, one being the abundance of single-family home neighbourhoods in the downtown core.

"It's something that I found very, very surprising when I moved here," Ms. Blonder says, adding that one would be hardpressed to find that in Paris - a city she had the pleasure of working in - or even in Montreal.

As Toronto continues to welcome tens of thousands of new residents each year, it's clear we'll have to adopt a more European model to house them. We must build a great deal of midrise and high-rises where appropriate, such as at transit crossroads. Living at these hubs, she adds, would mean less commuting and more quality time with one's children, who would be just as happy playing in an urban park as in a private backyard.

"People have a sense that a tall building is the opposite of 'community' and it's not the case," she finishes. "Community is created when people see each other over and over in the public realm."

And one last thing: To really get things right, more developers need to work with firms as passionate as Smart Density ... because they know better.

Associated Graphic

West of St. Helens Avenue on Toronto's Bloor Street are GO train tracks where, in five years, a GO station is scheduled to open. Architects Naama Blonder and Misha Bereznyak have created an unsolicited study of the southwestern corner of Bloor and St. Helens to shine a spotlight on what could be done in the area.


Ms. Blonder and Mr. Bereznyak, seen above with their daughter, Maple, are proposing two towers, one each on the northern and southern sides of Bloor Street, which would allow for a long, linear park to connect with the GO station.

Retailers, such as coffee shops or boutiques, would face the park, as seen above in a model, and the buildings themselves would cradle a protected green space for residents.


At school for sick children, trauma and tears, learning and laughter
Ronald McDonald House school began as a five-week pilot project and grew into a mission to help children battling severe illness
Monday, October 14, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A1

In the quiet moments of her day, Katie Doering will write letters to the families of children who spent time in her classroom before they died.

There was the little boy whose laugh brightened a room; a young girl who wanted to be a teacher, just like Ms.Doering; and another student who loved music lessons with drums.

Sometimes, Ms. Doering will mail the letters to the families.

Sometimes, especially when she addresses the letters to the child, she will instead tuck them inside a folder she keeps nearby. She has given that folder its own label: "Grief."

Ms. Doering has spent more than a decade teaching at Ronald McDonald House school in Toronto, where children undergoing medical treatment - as well as siblings - spend time in a classroom when they are not in a doctor's office or at the hospital. The letters are how Ms. Doering, the school's principal, copes with the reality of what can happen when students are seriously ill.

The school is the only one of its kind among the 368 houses around the world because it's a full-day school, where students are divided up based on grade level for lessons in math, language and science, and it allows siblings to attend.

It is tucked into the main floor of Ronald McDonald House, a place to stay for 81 families and a 10-minute walk from the Hospital For Sick Children.

Three other adults work at the school, which Ms. Doering helped establish 15 years ago this fall.

The mother of three, who completed her PhD earlier this year, draws from a deep well of energy.

She always takes time during the busy school day to listen when a child speaks.

The school gives children and their siblings a chance not only to keep up with their studies, but also a place to connect with others going through similar illnesses, she said.

"For me," Ms. Doering said, "it was really about if it was my own kid, wouldn't I want them to have this kind of experience?"

"I know I can't change the medical aspect of things. But I can make an impact in that child's life. If their life is two years or two more weeks, it's about making a difference in their day, that day," Ms. Doering said.

On a recent Tuesday during circle time on the carpet for the youngest students, five-year-old Inaya held up a happy face to show how she was feeling that morning.

"I saw Ava and she said hello back to me when I said hello," she said.

Mataeus, 7, held up the sad face.

"I was vomiting blood and I felt really sick," he told his classmates, remembering a time before his three-organ transplant - liver, bowel and pancreas - in March.

Ava, 6, went straight for the happy face: "Because my brother, Carson, is moving out of SickKids, and he's going to Bloorview [a children's rehabilitation hospital]. My mom will follow the ambulance."

Her smile widened as she spoke.

Ms. Doering said she wanted to teach in an alternative setting.

She called Ronald McDonald House when she was doing her bachelor of education at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education at the University of Toronto and was told that families had expressed an interest in schooling.

What started as a five-week pilot project flourished into a fullfledged school.

In those early days, she ran tutoring sessions out of a utility closet. Later on, a bedroom was converted into a small classroom through the week, then wiped down and changed back into living quarters for the weekend.

The classroom arrived when Ronald McDonald House moved to its current location in 2011. It is a bright, colourful space that overlooks the playground. New families can register every Thursday. Her staff has grown to include two teachers and an earlychildhood educator.

Samantha Harnadek was nervous about her son Mataeus attending this fall. He had a three-organ transplant after waiting almost four years, and she was scared of him falling ill.

Mataeus loves school, though.

He is a friendly boy who is thoughtful with his responses.

He was homeschooling before, and Ms. Harnadek, who lives in St. Catharines, Ont., wanted him to have the experience of listening to instructions, waiting his turn and sharing.

"We just try," she said.

Eight-year-old Everleigh, with bright hazel eyes, said she was a "bit scared" to start at a new school "but it's been good." She was diagnosed with pulmonary hypertension and has been waiting for a heart repair and a double lung transplant. She carries an oxygen tank, and a nurse comes in during a lesson in subtraction to feed her a smoothie through a tube.

Everleigh says she misses her dogs and her friends back home in West Lorne, just outside of London, Ont. She's not sure how long she might be staying: "You never know, because you have to wait for the perfect lungs to be available."

Sitting beside her, 10-year-old Jack pulled up the hood of his sweatshirt. Jack named his rare brain tumour Jack's Planet, because it looked like a planet. He is at the house waiting for his head to heal from the surgery, and then he can start radiation.

The robots are his favourite part of school, "because you get to do coding with them, drive them around and make annoying noises."

Ms. Doering said there were times when she wondered whether she wanted to continue teaching at the school. In one of her first years, she learned of nine deaths in a one-week period. There was another time, she said, when she heard another student ask a little boy a question.

The boy's sister had just died, but something elicited a chuckle from him that day. Another student saw it and asked how the little boy could laugh.

The boy responded: "I don't have any tears left."

"For me," Ms. Doering said, "it is too important not to do it."

Associated Graphic

Katie Doering, principal of the Ronald McDonald House school, helps four-year-old junior kindergarten student Sophie with an exercise on her second day in class last month.


Damian sits beside his sister Sophie during class at the Ronald McDonald House school in Toronto. The school gives children who are undergoing medical treatment the chance to keep up with their studies and allows their siblings to attend, too.


Scheer calls for majority to head off anti-Tory coalition
Tuesday, October 15, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A1

OTTAWA WINNIPEG WINDSOR, ONT. -- Andrew Scheer is taking aim at the idea of a coalition government, a day after NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh said he was "absolutely" open to one to keep the Tories from power.

Only a Conservative majority can prevent a government with "Justin Trudeau as the spokesman but the NDP calling the shots," the Conservative Leader said in Winnipeg Monday after announcing that he would table a fiscal update within 45 days if his party forms government.

Mr. Scheer said he would not consider governing in a coalition if no party wins a majority in the Oct. 21 election.

For his part, Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau is declining to say whether he would join a possible coalition.

"My focus is on electing a progressive government and stopping Conservative cuts," Mr. Trudeau said Monday in Windsor. He did not address at least six questions about how he would react in the event that voters don't hand power to one party.

Since the leaders' debates last week, the NDP and Bloc Québécois have risen in the polls, suggesting that no party would win a majority government if an election were held today. That dynamic is what's prompting questions about how the parties would govern in a minority Parliament.

As the leaders crisscrossed the country, local campaigns focused their efforts on getting out the vote in the four days of advance polls over the Thanksgiving weekend. According to Elections Canada, there was a 25-per-cent increase in turnout during the first two days of advance polling, compared with the 2015 election.

Mr. Singh put the possibility of a coalition government on the table Sunday when he said he would consider joining one if it meant keeping the Conservatives out of power. On Monday, however, Mr.

Singh backpedalled, telling reporters, "My focus is not on a coalition."

Instead of "negotiating the future," he doubled down on his efforts to woo disaffected Liberal and Conservative voters.

"You're not stuck with two choices, you can go beyond that," Mr. Singh said. With more New Democrats in Parliament, he said the NDP would push for policies such as universal pharmacare and dental care.

Even if Mr. Scheer wins the most seats but falls short of a majority, he likely wouldn't have many partners to negotiate with in a minority scenario.

Mr. Singh has already ruled out supporting the Conservatives, and Green Party Leader Elizabeth May has said her support would be contingent on a minority government setting more stringent greenhouse gas-emissions targets - which the Conservatives don't support. Mr. Scheer further narrowed his options Monday by ruling out a partnership with the Bloc Québécois.

"We would not govern, we would not enter into any type of negotiations with the Bloc," he said.

Canada has had its share of federal minority governments, where the party with the most seats governs by getting support from other parties on a case-by-case basis, but coalition governments are rare. Under a coalition, parties negotiate a formal power sharing arrangement and more than one party sits at the cabinet table.

On Monday, Mr. Trudeau was asked about his plans if voters don't grant any party a majority government. While stressing that he can work with opposition parties, he also pushed the need for a "strong government."

"Standing up against" premiers like Jason Kenney and Doug Ford and "standing up to Donald Trump and other challenging leaders around the world requires a government that is able to pull together all Canadians," Mr. Trudeau said while standing at a podium with the Detroit skyline in the background.

The fact that coalitions are now part of the conversation with six days left in the campaign shows how much the electoral map has shifted, Dalhousie University's director of the school of public administration Lori Turnbull said Monday.

"The election is really about the rise of the NDP and the Bloc," she said. "It's about the rise of the two parties that aren't the front-runners."

To try to secure a majority, she said, the Liberals and Conservatives are attempting to frame the choice for voters in a way that brings them back into the fold. Mr. Trudeau, she said, is trying to avoid a scenario where voters think if they cast a ballot for the NDP the worst they'll get is a Liberal minority, while Mr. Scheer is trying to "stir up" the ghost of the 2008 Liberal-NDP coalition that then-prime minister Stephen Harper successfully shut down.

"Even though coalitions are completely legitimate," Prof.

Turnbull said that Mr. Harper was able to delegitimize them and cast them as improper.

The Liberals, Conservatives and NDP started the final leg of the campaign on the offensive, visiting ridings held by their opponents. Mr. Trudeau spent most of the day targeting NDP and Conservative-held seats in southwestern Ontario.

Mr. Singh continued his tour in B.C., making two stops in the Liberal stronghold of Vancouver Centre.

Mr. Scheer started the week with two events in Winnipeg on Monday, where the Liberals hold seven of the eight ridings.

Before he was to make an announcement at a Winnipeg hotel, he was criticized for campaigning in Manitoba while the province is under a state of emergency because of snowstorms that knocked out power and forced some communities to evacuate.

Mr. Scheer said he sends his "best wishes" to the first-responders working in difficult conditions and said he had made a donation to the Red Cross but wouldn't say how much he gave.

The Green Party Leader was not campaigning on Monday.

The Liberals and Conservatives are deadlocked at 32-percent support each, according to Monday's daily tracking survey from Nanos Research. The New Democrats are at 19 per cent, with the Greens at 9 per cent, the Bloc Québécois at 6 per cent and the People's Party at 1 per cent.

The poll was sponsored by The Globe and Mail and CTV, with a total of 1,200 Canadians surveyed from Oct. 11 to Oct.

13. It has a margin of error of 2.8 percentage points, 19 times out of 20. Respondents were asked: "If a federal election were held today, could you please rank your top two current local voting preferences?" A report on the results, questions and methodology for this and all surveys can be found at

With reports from Janice Dickson

A turnaround in the 905
Local realtors notice an uptick in buying in an area slow to recover from recent downturn
Friday, October 11, 2019 – Print Edition, Page H3

TORONTO -- In late September, Markham, Ont., real estate agent Leslie Benczik placed a "for sale" sign on the lawn of a four-bedroom house in a traditional Markham sub-division.

Two days later, a buyer stepped forward and paid just less than the $1.2-million asking price.

That's the kind of quick action the suburban 905 area around Toronto hasn't seen in a couple of years.

That same week, Mr. Benczik drew two offers for a more luxurious Markham detached listed with an asking price of $1.488-million.

The four-bedroom house was on the market for about two weeks, he says, when one offer landed on the table. Mr. Benczik notified the real estate agents and potential buyers who had been to see the property that an offer was on the table.

"Finally I was able to draw a second offer out of the woodwork," he says.

The action wasn't exactly a 2017-style frenzy, but it does mark a significant pick-up in the pace of buying: Mr. Benczik points out that large, detached suburban houses have been languishing on the market for months at a time.

"A lot of them have gone through multiple price reductions - sometimes with many agents," he says.

Markham, Aurora, Richmond Hill and King City are some of the areas that were particularly hardhit after the Ontario government of the day introduced a foreignbuyers tax and other measures designed to cool the housing market in April, 2017.

Mr. Benczik recently became the fourth listing agent to tackle one property. In the core districts of Markham, Mr. Benczik estimates only about three or four houses sold in the price range of $1.5-million to $2-million in all of last year.

But the mood has shifted and buyers no longer seem to be waiting around for deeper price cuts.

The latest numbers from the Toronto Real Estate Board show that sales of detached houses in the Greater Toronto Area jumped 29 per cent in September from the same month last year.

That pace outperforms the broader market, which rose at a 22-per-cent clip in September compared with September, 2018.

The average price of a detached house in the 905 rose 4.5 per cent last month compared with the same month last year. The average price of a detached house in the central 416 area code edged up 1.2 per cent last month compared with September, 2018.

TREB says new listings in the GTA dipped 1.9 per cent in September from September of last year. The industry organization says those tightening market conditions lead to an accelerating annual rate of price growth.

At Toronto-Dominion Bank, economist Rishi Sondhi points out that seasonally adjusted sales in Toronto were essentially flat in September compared with August. That performance compares with a strong gain in Vancouver, where activity continues to recover from the extreme lows observed earlier in the year.

"On balance, these performances met our expectations, doing nothing to alter our view that so long as the fundamentals remain intact, housing will contribute positively to growth moving forward," he says.

In the suburbs, Mr. Benczik says, he can sense the market's brio through the volume on showings and the number of people passing through weekend "open house" events.

Mr. Benczik says the fact that a few properties in the 905 have attracted competing bidders is evidence of the strong demand and low supply.

"Through the course of 2018, there was a lot of reluctance."

Sellers have become acclimatized to market realities, he adds, which means that most accept that the record prices of 2017 are in the past.

Recently, the issue of vacant houses has attracted the attention of some politicians. The provincial government of British Columbia rolled out a speculation tax on underutilized or vacant homes in 2018.

Mr. Benczik has seen some suburban neighbourhoods where the trend is noticeable.

"I'm definitely seeing vacant homes."

Mr. Benczik says the neighbourhoods that appealed to investors during the run-up in 2016 and 2017 are also the areas where many homes appear to be uninhabited.

In some cases, it's apparent the houses are unoccupied because maintenance of the property is slipping.

"I think that's where the public gets upset."

Also, the rental market is tight and that makes the spotlight on vacant homes that much more intense, he adds.

In some cases, the investors are overseas buyers who are reluctant to make the homes available for rental because they're not sure how long they are going to keep them, Mr. Benczik says, adding it can be hard to sell a property if the tenant is not co-operating.

Some speculators who live overseas are also hesitant to hire a rental management company, he adds, so they let the property sit instead.

Over all, Mr. Benczik says he does not believe policy on housing and other issues under discussion in this month's federal election are having a large effect on buyers or sellers in the real estate market.

"I haven't come across anybody delaying their decision because of that."

Most consumers - particularly if they are buying - are more focused on the direction of interest rates, he says. "That's been a big conversation in the past couple of years."

Mr. Benczik says he believes a drop in mortgage rates has encouraged first-time buyers to move into the market and existing homeowners to trade properties in recent months.

A solid client can obtain a fiveyear fixed mortgage with an interest rate of 2.59 per cent, he says.

"Interest rates are at an incredible level."

Generally, October is the biggest month of the fall market, Mr.Benczik says, and November is often busy, too.

"We've still got a lot of the fall market ahead of us."

Looking ahead at the rest of 2019 and the spring market in 2020, Mr. Benczik cautions that the market is unpredictable. Geopolitical tensions surrounding Brexit and the impeachment investigation of U.S. President Donald Trump are just two of the factors that could roil economies and financial markets.

Associated Graphic

The Toronto Real Estate Board says sales of detached houses in the Greater Toronto Area, including Markham, Ont., where a house is seen for sale above, increased 29 per cent year over year in September, outpacing a broader market increase of 22 per cent.


Scheer makes minority leadership pitch
Leader cites 'convention' to support claim that he should be PM if Tories win most seats but fall short of a majority
Friday, October 18, 2019 – Print Edition, Page A4

OTTAWA P BRAMPTON -- Andrew Scheer laid out his reasoning for why the Conservatives should be allowed to govern if his party wins the most seats but falls short of a majority, saying modern "convention" supports his argument.

Mr. Scheer's comments were challenged by political-science scholars who said no such convention exists and that constitutional convention in fact grants the incumbent prime minister the first chance of winning the confidence of the House in the event of a minority result.

Questions about how the parties would react if voters elect a minority Parliament on Oct. 21 are being fuelled by poll numbers that show a dead heat among the Liberal and Conservative front-runners. Polls from Nanos Research suggest that no party has enough support to win a majority if an election were held today.

During a campaign stop in Brampton, Ont., Mr. Scheer told reporters, "It is clear that in modern Canadian history, the party with the most seats forms the government and that a prime minister who comes out of an election with fewer seats than another party, resigns." Mr.Scheer was Speaker of the House from 2011 to 2015.

Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau expressed similar views during the 2015 campaign, telling the CBC that "whoever gets the most seats gets the first shot at trying to command the confidence of the House."

However, in the same interview, he also said that the incumbent Prime Minister "absolutely" has the first shot at forming government in a minority Parliament.

In this election campaign, Mr.Trudeau has avoided answering the same questions.

"We are focused on electing a strong Liberal government," Mr.Trudeau said in response to reporters at a campaign stop in Trois-Rivières.

NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh said he won't be "bogged down" by the details and that if voters elect New Democrats they will "get fighters, you get people on your side."

But as the prospect of a minority Parliament with a complex distribution of seats grows, details are exactly what constitutional experts want politicians to be paying attention to. Under Canada's Constitution, the prime minister and cabinet remain in place until they resign or are dismissed by the governor-general.

They don't get booted on election night just because they didn't win the plurality of seats in an election that results in a minority.

"The convention is that they get to meet the House and see if they can maintain the confidence. And if they can't, they have to resign," University of Alberta professor Eric Adams said.

Being able to command the confidence of the House is the critical part of whether a prime minister holds onto power. Unlike in the U.S., voters don't directly elect the prime minister.

Instead, Canadians elect MPs who then decide who to support as prime minister.

Philippe Lagassé, an associate professor at Carleton University, said there is a misconception that the governor-general decides which party leader can seek the confidence of the House first.

"By virtue of his office as prime minister, he decides when Parliament is recalled and he holds that office until he resigns, and he is under no obligation to resign if he believes that he can secure the confidence of the House, and that's the reason why he is able to stay on," Prof. Lagassé said.

Prof. Adams said Canada's institutional memory on constitutional conventions is rusty but added that they exist to ensure good government.

The last time an incumbent prime minister failed to win the most seats in the House of Commons, but retained power, took place in 1925, according to Prof.

Adams. Back then, Mackenzie King continued to govern even though the Conservatives had more seats, because King was able to win the confidence of the House with the support of another party.

In 2018, incumbent New Brunswick premier Brian Gallant tried to win the confidence of the House to continue governing even though he had one less seat than the Conservatives. He was defeated in the legislature.

And B.C. is governed by the NDP, though it has one less seat than the Liberals. Green Party legislators agreed to support the NDP on confidence votes for four years in exchange for policy concessions.

Even though former prime minister Paul Martin didn't exercise his right to the convention in the 2006 election, Prof. Adams said that doesn't weaken the convention in modern Canadian politics.

Mr. Martin's resignation gave then-Conservative leader Stephen Harper the chance to seek the confidence of the House in a minority government. Which he successfully did in 2006 and again in 2008.

Over that time, the Conservatives survived confidence votes based on individual arrangements, often with the support of the Bloc or the Liberals.

The challenge for Mr. Scheer in a minority scenario is that his party - and his policy proposals - would not have any natural allies.

On Thursday, for instance, he said that if the Conservatives form government, his first legislative act would be to repeal the carbon tax.

Support for carbon pricing is a core position for all of the other main parties. Bloc Québécois Leader Yves-François Blanchet clearly ruled out supporting a carbon-tax repeal this week.

Thursday's daily tracking survey from Nanos Research had the Conservatives at 33 per cent support of respondents and the Liberals at 32 per cent. The New Democrats were at 19 per cent, the Greens at 9 per cent, the Bloc Québécois at 6 per cent and the People's Party at 2 per cent.

The poll was sponsored by The Globe and Mail and CTV, with a total of 1,200 Canadians surveyed on Oct. 13, 15 and 16 (there was no polling on Thanksgiving Monday). It has a margin of error of 2.8 percentage points, 19 times out of 20. Respondents were asked: "If a federal election were held today, could you please rank your top two current local voting preferences?" A report on the results, questions and methodology for this and all surveys can be found at http://

With reports from Janice Dickson in Welland, Ont., and Michelle Zilio in Trois-Rivières.

Associated Graphic

Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer campaigns in Brampton, Ont., on Thursday, where he made the argument that he should have first shot at leading if the Tories win the most seats. CARLOS OSORIO/REUTERS

Looking for an opening
The next government needs a plan for foreign investment