Archive for August, 2009
Monday, August 31st, 2009
An Ontario Dad who is cycling to Alberta from Ontario to raise funds in honor of his murdered daughter, has reached Manitoba. 34 year old Rodney Stafford will ride into Winnipeg today. His 8 year old daughter Victoria, also known as Tori, was abducted and killed back in April, as she walked home from her Woodstock, Ontario school.
Well there’s another threat to trees in Manitoba, and this one could be as devastating as Dutch Elm. The emerald ash borer is an insect which has destroyed million of ash trees since landing in North America. Despite efforts to keep the bug at bay, it’s likely to hit Manitoba at anytime…and we are especially vulnerable thanks to plenty of ash trees planted around town to replace trees lost to Dutch Elm.
It hasn’t been totally confirmed yet….but, there are signs that one of the world’s biggest and most iconic technology companies, is moving to town. Rumor has it that, construction has begun on a new Apple store at Polo Park Mall. So far, company officials aren’t saying much, but, Apple is advertising a job opening for a retail store manager for Winnipeg.
If many of the country’s economists are right, numbers coming out this morning will show that the recession may finally be over. Many are expecting to hear that the slump actually ended in June…and that growth returned to the country for the first time in 10 months this summer.
Out west, the fires continue to burn. In B.C., the forecast for the next 10 days suggests mostly hot and dry conditions. And that makes the fire risk as bad as ever at a time of year that typically marks the end of the fire season. And down in California, a massive blaze has now burned 171 square kilometers and is now threatening some 12 thousand homes.
For the 2nd time ever, it’s a party of 13 in space. The astronauts cheered last night as the hatches between the space station and the shuttle Discovery swung open, allowing the 2 crews to greet each other with hugs and handshakes. Discovery will spend just over a week at the space station dropping off supplies and experiments, before heading back to terra ferma.
And it was a good beginning for a “Final Destination.” The latest installment of the horror franchise, opened at number 1 this weekend, taking in some 28 million dollars. Quentin Tarantino’s, “Inglorious Basterds” slipped to 2nd with 20 million in ticket sales, followed by “Halloween 2.”
Friday, August 28th, 2009
Little bit of shock and awe out of the Leg yesterday. As you’ve probably heard by now, Premier Gary Doer has decided to call it quits. Doer said when you have a chance to go out on your own terms, it’s best to do so. So now, party officials will meet as early as this weekend to begin planning a leadership convention. Possible contenders to replace Doer include, Finance Minister Greg Selinger and former NDP MP, Bill Blaikie.
Well you gotta like this news on a Friday morning. If MPI gets its way, auto insurance rates will stay the same next year. The crown owned insurer has filed a request with the Public Utilities Board to keep rates in 2010 at this year’s level. A spokesperson says declining auto theft rates have helped to make this happen.
That crippled bridge over the Red River near St. Adolphe, will be partially dismantled. The crossing was closed indefinitely last week after one of its piers began sinking, thanks to riverbank instability. An official says a completely new bridge does remain a possibility.
More than 20 thousand people lined up in Boston yesterday to pay their last respects to Edward Kennedy. The former senator’s closed coffin is lying in repose for 2 days at the JFK Library and Museum. Tonight, a memorial service will be held, and then tomorrow the official funeral at a Boston cathedral.
An absolutely unbelievable story out of California. A convicted sex offender and his wife are under arrest today after a bizarre kidnapping that started in 1991. Jaycee Lee Dugard was abducted when she was 11. For the past 18 years, she was kept hidden from the world behind a series of fences and sheds. Authorities say she was raped, and even had 2 girls by her captor. Now 29 years old, officials say Dugard appears to be in good health, and has been reunited with her family.
Danny is gonna be blowin out east this weekend. The Canadian Hurricane Center says the Atlantic provinces can expect a lot of rain, and strong winds courtesy of tropical storm Danny. However, forecasters say it’s too soon to predict how much rain and how damaging the winds will be.
NASA will try again today to launch the space shuttle Discovery. The agency says it appears a fuel valve that forced it scrub Tuesday’s planned launch, is now working perfectly. The shuttle is due to go on a 13 day mission to deliver supplies to the international space station.
The Liberals say there’s not much chance they’ll bring down the minority Tory government this fall. Senator David Smith, who co chairs the Liberal campaign says it’s irresponsible to “push the election button every time.” Smith says as far as he knows, Canadians simply have no appetite for an election right now.
Thursday, August 27th, 2009
A joint police unit has been set up in the province to review dozens of unsolved cases of missing and murdered women. The unit will be made up of 3 RCMP officers, 2 RCMP analysts and 4 city police. They’ll look at unsolved homicide and missing person cases involving women, some of which go all the way back to 1966.
Well the title of cultural capital of the country, goes to Winnipeg next year. The designation is given to a different Canadian city every year. To win the bid though, the city along with the Winnipeg arts council and destination Winnipeg, prepared a detailed program of proposed events. The honor by the way comes with 2 million dollars in federal funding.
The man who headed up the inquiry into the Liberal sponsorship scandal says the Harper government hasn’t lived up to a campaign promise. Justice John Gomery says the feds promised to be different by being transparent when it comes to access to information legislation. But he says they haven’t….and, as a result, some federal access applications have been delayed by as much as 2 years.
U.S. Senator Ted Kennedy’s family will accompany his body today on a road trip from his Cape Cod home to Boston. His body will then lie in repose for 2 days at the JFK Presidential Library and Museum. U.S. President Barack Obama, a close friend of Kennedy’s, will apparently deliver the eulogy at the funeral this weekend at a Boston church.
Just days after Hurricane Bill swiped most of Atlantic Canada…the same area may want to keep an eye on the forecast for next week, as another storm front is chuggin north. The U.S. National Hurricane Center is tracking the path of tropical storm Danny…and so far, it’s path it’s very similar to last week’s hurricane. In fact one Canadian meteorologist says Danny could make landfall just south of Nova Scotia.
Octo-Mom is breathin a little easier this morning. A California appeals court has ruled that the mother of 14, will not face an investigation by child protective services. Nadya Suleman’s lawyer says his client is relieved that the investigation, which had been ordered by a lower court judge, will now, not happen.
Wednesday, August 26th, 2009
That Winnipeg firefighter who had some “fun time” with a woman while on duty here in Osborne Village, says at no time was the public ever in jeopardy. But the man has been demoted from his current position, and will be transferred to another fire hall.
We told you about this a few weeks ago, and now, the town of Killarney hopes to have a curfew in place by October 1st to try and stop a huge vandalism and crime problem. Under the bylaw, all young people 17 and under would have to be indoors in their parents homes no later than 1 a.m. Violators would be subject to a 250 dollar fine.
World leaders are paying tribute this morning to the late U.S. Senator, Edward Kennedy. Kennedy passed away at his home in Hyannis Port, Massachusetts after a long battle with brain cancer. Ted Kennedy had spent 47 years in the Senate, and was only 77 when he passed away.
A problem with a critical fuel valve has scrubbed the latest launch attempt of the space shuttle Discovery. Engineers suspect it may be a problem with instruments, which would mean a quick fix, and the bird could lift off this Friday.
U.S. police say they can’t yet speculate on what might have happened between former reality show contestant Ryan Jenkins and his ex wife, that led to her murder in California. They can only say for certain there was a serious domestic violence incident between Jenkins and Jasmine Fiore. Fiore’s body was found mutilated in an L.A. dumpster earlier this month. Jenkins later fled to Canada and was found dead of an apparent suicide in a motel near Hope, B.C.
Election fever got a boost following a private meeting in Ottawa yesterday between Prime Minister Harper and NDP leader Jack Layton. Layton came out of the meeting to say that Harper doesn’t seem to understand how severe the country’s unemployment problem really is. As a result, the NDP leader suggests that he’s willing to support any attempt to bring down the government this fall.
Cross border shoppers are gonna hate this news. The Bank of Canada says it’s willing to act to make sure our dollar doesn’t continue its recent rise. The central bank says a higher loonie hurts exporters because it makes their goods more expensive in the U.S. Right now our loonie is worth just over 92 cents U.S., which is a 6 cent jump in just over 6 weeks.
Thanks to mounting public pressure, Manitoba is expected to announce a task force to look into the disappearance and murder of aboriginal women. Sources say the province could make the announcement as soon as today. Right now there are 520 cases of missing or murdered aboriginal women in the country….72 of those cases come from Manitoba.
Friday, August 21st, 2009
Police have arrested an 18 year old man after a Winnipeg Transit driver was shot with a B.B. air pistol. Fortunately, the 50 year old driver wasn’t injured when the pellet hit him in the upper body. The incident happened Wednesday when someone driving beside the bus in the city’s north end, fired the shot.
A 34 year old man has been charged in the death of a 19 year old city woman who was killed in a hit and run. Melissa Ranville was walking last Friday when she was hit by the car. Police have now arrested a man and hit with numerous charges including, failing to remain at the scene of an accident, and driving while disqualified.
A Winnipeg firefighter has been accused of having sex while on duty and missing an alarm. An official says the firefighter was accused by at least one co-worker of not being in the fire station at the time of the of the call. He was allegedly found in an equipment shed behind the building with a woman.
For many residents of southern Ontario, this is clean up day after the region was pounded by severe storms last night. High winds, at least 4 suspected tornado’s, demolished buildings, toppled trees and brought down several power lines.
A tropical storm warning is now in effect for Bermuda, thanks to Hurricane Bill, which is packing winds of almost 200 kilometers an hour. Forecasters predict the storm will hit the Maritime area by late Sunday and early Monday. Nova Scotia will apparently take the brunt of the storm.
A memorial will be held in Milwaukee today for Les Paul. The guitar virtuoso and inventor, will be buried tonight in Wisconsin, where he was born 94 years ago. Paul, who died 8 days ago, is a member of both the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and the National Inventors Hall of Fame.
And, Panasonic has signed Canadian born director, James Cameron, to an advertising blitz for its t.v. equipped with 3-D technology. To watch 3-D t.v., you have to wear special glasses that give the illusion of depth. Panasonic plans to start selling its 3-D, t.v.’s next year.
Thursday, August 20th, 2009
City police say an ecstasy bust they made last month was the largest ever in the city, and one of the largest in the country. 2 B.C. men are facing numerous charges after cops seized 65 kilos of the drug from a vehicle pulled over for speeding. The street price of those drugs was worth well over 6 million dollars.
A 19 year old man faces 5 dozen sex charges involving 11 young boys. RCMP say the alleged offences happened between 2002 and July of this year. The boys assaulted ranged in age from 8 to 14. And because some of them said the alleged offences happened when the man was under 18, he can’t be identified.
Hurricane Bill has weakened slightly this morning to a category 3 storm, as it continues to roar across the Atlantic. Forecasters say it’s currently on a track towards the Maritime provinces, but, they say it’s still too soon to tell if it’ll make landfall.
A Seattle woman is suing magician David Copperfield, saying he sexually assaulted and threatened her while she was a guest on his private island in the Bahamas. Copperfield’s lawyers call the suit, an extortion for money, plain and simple. Reports say the woman is a 22 year old former Miss Washington U.S.A. contestant.
The “bobbies” got their men. British police have found and arrested 2 men involved in one of Britain’s biggest ever jewel heists. A massive search was underway after 2 well dressed men walked into a central London jewelry store a couple of weeks ago, with handguns…and ripped off rings, bracelets, necklaces and watches worth 66 million dollars. Police announced the arrests last night, but released no other details.
Rock n roll hall of famer, Billy Joel is selling a pair of adjacent homes in the Hamptons area for 35 million U.S., after a split from his 3rd wife, Katie Lee Joel. Billy and Katie announced back in June they were separating after 5 years of marriage.
An autopsy will be done on the body of a man found in a neighborhood park in the city’s West End yesterday. Police say a passerby found the body and called it in yesterday morning. So far police don’t know whether foul play was involved in the man’s death…..and his name has not been released.
Wednesday, August 19th, 2009
The province will help pay for thousands of flu kits to help aboriginal communities battle an expected resurgence of swine flu this fall. The kits will be stocked with everything needed to prevent contracting the virus…including masks, gloves, tissue, hand sanitizers and Tylenol.
A 26 year old Vancouver man has been charged in a one million dollar credit card fraud. Winnipeg police were investigating a vehicle break in downtown, when they came across items associated with illegal credit card trafficking in the rented car. They found the guy who had rented the vehicle…and he’s now facing numerous charges.
City police are wondering if there’s a serial attacker loose around town. 2 women were grabbed from behind and sexually assaulted during separate attacks last week. But both gave pretty similar description’s of the guy who did it. So now cops are looking to see if the 2 attacks were related. They’re currently looking for an aboriginal male, in his early 20’s, around 5’9, with short brown hair. If you know anything about the case you’re asked to call crime stoppers.
All eyes are on Bill these days. The category 4 hurricane is still rumbling across the Atlantic, but forecasters say the storm could hit the eastern part of the U.S. and even the Maritimes in the next several days.
Well kids, and adults alike will love this news. Sony announced this morning they’re gonna slash the price of the PlayStation 3, around the world, in a move that’ll hopefully boost sales. The Japanese electronics maker introduced a revamped, slimmer version of the PS-3 today, and also cut the selling price by a hundred bucks.
Oscar winning actor Sean Penn and his wife Robin Wright are calling it quits on their 13 year marriage. Reports say Wright filed for divorce on August 12th, citing, what else ?, “irreconcilable differences” for the split. Apparently the couple have already agreed to share custody of their 16 year old son, Jack.
The only Volkswagen plant in the world that produces the new Beetle has been shut down by a strike. Workers at the plant in Puebla, Mexico walked off the job today to demand an 8 per cent raise. By the way their average pay?, is only 30 dollars U.S. a day.
Monday, August 17th, 2009
Well the massive spring flood in Manitoba that caused at least 40 million dollars in damage, is now taking its toll in another way on Lake Winnipeg. Experts say flood waters that emptied into the lake increased phosphorus and nitrogen by about 20 per cent…….and those nutrients can be dangerous.
Things are getting a little crazy for one southern Manitoba town these days so…..Killarney is now thinking about imposing a curfew to stop all the crime. Town council is also thinking about installing surveillance camera’s. Mounties pitched the idea this summer, thanks to a ton of underage drinking, break-ins and other crimes. A decision on the idea is expected in the next few weeks.
Money, money, money….it’s on the minds of many Canadians these days as we begin to emerge from this recession. But a new poll done by the Canadian Medical Association suggests that money on the brain is taking a toll on Canadians health. The poll found 57 per cent of those asked said they worried about their finances….and 2 in 5 said they’re actually feeling stressed and overwhelmed by money and job concerns.
Wal-Mart is being embraced with a Kiss. The veteran rock group, Kiss, is joining a growing list of classic acts putting out new music through the world’s biggest retailer. “Sonic Boom” is set to be released only at Wal-Mart on October 6th. It’ll include c.d. of the band’s first new music in 11 years, and re-recorded versions of famous Kiss hits, as well as a live DVD.
The NDP, will stay just that…the NDP. New Democrat leader Jack Layton is downplaying the importance of a possible name change for the party. The issue didn’t get voted on at the party’s annual meeting on Sunday, because delegates ran out of time. A motion had been put forth to change the party’s name to simply…..New Democrats.