Canadians observed Remembrance Day yesterday. This year's event was more poignant than most, following the murder of a Canadian soldier standing post at Ottawa's War Memorial last month, and the targeting of two other soldiers in a Quebec hit-and-run automobile attack leaving one dead and the other grievously injured.
The government here has run a seemingly endless series of television and other ads emphasizing the centennial anniversary of the Great War, or War to End All War, also called World War I. The veritable barrage of messaging aimed at us by the military enthusiast prime minister conflates Canadian identity with the long-past conflict, and subtly suggests true citizenship depends on support for ongoing military involvement overseas.
Perhaps because of the events in Ottawa and Quebec, turnout for yesterday's event was predicted to be higher than usual. I went down to the annual gathering of "white poppies" at the MacKenzie-Papineau Brigade memorial located adjacent to the main event at Victoria's Legislature Buildings.
Remembering war in another way in the first half.
And; British Columbia's new leader of the New Democrat Party, John Horgan published an Op-Ed piece in the Vancouver Sun Monday voicing support for the LNG industry. In the piece, titled, 'B.C. Liberals get it wrong on LNG,' Horgan attempts a bit of linguistic gymnastics to both attack the ecologically vulnerable Liberals, while keeping his party's traditional labour and "green" support on-side.
"LNG" is BC political-speak for fracking, the practice famously chronicled in the documentary film, Gasland, where people living in proximity to fracked wells found their ground water polluted, and kitchen and bathroom faucets explosive. Mr. Horgan's support for the industry, he says, is contingent on it being "done right." But is there a way to do the wrong thing rightly?
Mike G. is a San Franciso-based writer and journalist who may beg to disagree with Mr. Horgan. His recent article, 'Confirmed: California Aquifers Contaminated With Billions Of Gallons of Fracking Wastewater' documents this disturbing situation in America's fruit and vegetable producing heartland, already suffering record-breaking drought. Mike G.'s work appears on the web at DeSmogBlog, Mongabay, Alternet, and Treehugger, among other places. He's also worked on climate and forest issues for Greenpeace and the Rainforest Action Network, specializing in online organizing and communications.
Mike G. and California fracking done wrong in the second half.
And; Victoria Street Newz publisher emeritus and CFUV Radio broadcaster, Janine Bandcroft will join us at the bottom of the hour to bring us up to speed with some of what's good to do in and around our city, and beyond there too. But first, remembering the real reason for remembering Armistice Day.