VOL. 3 ISSUE 29
ST. JOHN’S, NEWFOUNDLAND AND LABRADOR — SUNDAY THROUGH SATURDAY, JULY 17-23, 2005
$1.00 (INCLUDING HST)
OPINION PAGES 11 AND 29
John Crosbie on sorry state of health care; Siobhan Coady on province’s business potential
Frank Moores speaks up
Ottawa makes estimated 60 per cent from offshore oil; province takes 40 per cent CLARE-MARIE GOSSE
he federal government’s take from the oil industry off Newfoundland and Labrador is at least 60 per cent — even after the new Atlantic Accord deal — compared to the province’s 40 per cent cut, according to economist Wade Locke. Locke, who has conducted extensive research and compiled reports into the offshore, tells The Independent the 60/40 split is a conservative estimate based on federal stakes and the price of oil. The provincial government now benefits from 100 per cent of offshore royalties under the new Accord deal. The federal government makes its money from corporate income tax, personal income tax, excise tax and GST (goods and services tax). The feds also continue to enjoy the benefit of an 8.5 share in Hibernia. Hibernia is expected to produce 74 million barrels of oil in 2005. Based on a modest equation of 70 million barrels at $50 each, Locke says the federal government will make at least See “I think it’s getting worse,” page 5
Patrick Boyle of the Patrick Boyle Quartet will be one of the featured performers at the fourth annual St. John's Jazz Festival taking place at venues all around the city from July 20-24. Boyle is slated to perform July 22 in Harbourside Park. Paul Daly/The Independent
‘First champion of the fishermen’ Politician, union leader and knight, William Coaker changed the face of the Newfoundland fishery
Editor’s note: Over the next 10 weeks The Independent will reveal, in random order, our choice of the top 10 Newfoundlanders and Labradorians of all time. From the list will be chosen a No. 1, to be announced at the series’ conclusion.
“I feel that if Newfoundland had gotten a fair break on its resources and (given) the frustrations we’ve had with — particularly Ottawa, but also almost equally Quebec — if … we had a chance at being selfsufficient, I’d say separation would be an easier thing to pull off in Newfoundland than Quebec.”
— Frank Moores, former premier
By Stephanie Porter The Independent
NewCap climbs broadcasting ladder
istorian John FitzGerald paints a telling picture of union organizer William Coaker, taking his first steps as an elected official into the House of Assembly in 1913. “This guy walked straight into the lion’s den with his members of the House,” says FitzGerald. “And instead of wearing the merchant’s expensive three-piece suits — as all the other members had— they walked in, wearing their hand-knit sweaters. “It was like, ‘We’re here, now deal with us.’” And the then-Governor of Newfoundland, Sir Edward Morris, came face-to-face with a powerful opposition and the force that would eventually end the long reign of the People’s Party. Coaker and his Union candidates,
QUOTE OF THE WEEK
LIFE 17 though affiliated with the Liberals, were the political arm of the 20,000 strong Fishermen’s Protective Union (FPU), which Coaker began in 1908. Described as a magnetic and tireless leader, Coaker’s work stands as the first great movement to organize fishermen — and sealers, and loggers — in the province in the early 1900s. He sought strength in unity and pride, aiming to lead the workers out from under the thumb of the merchants, traders, and government. See “Coaker ‘fought’,” page 2
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Lost treasure Newfoundland Collection jeopardized by leaky pipes and cash shortage ALISHA MORRISSEY
he largest collection of Newfoundland and Labrador’s written history is in danger of being lost to water leaks, a funding shortage and space issues, library officials warn. The Newfoundland Collection — a division of the province’s public libraries, located in the basement of the St. John’s Arts and Culture Centre below the A.C. Hunter Library — is mandated to collect and preserve the province’s history, but the basement storage facility is inadequate. The facility takes up several rooms where newspapers, photos and government documents spill into hallways. Much of the collection is covered in plastic to protect it from leaky overhead pipes. Buckets placed on the concrete floor to catch dripping water have left rust imprints. Blueprints for Fort Townshend (location of The Rooms); old maps of the province when it was depicted as almost round; books from the early 1800s; and hand-written notebooks describing travels to the then-unexplored interior of Newfoundland are literally jammed into every available nook and cranny. In one room, periodicals and provincial budget documents — every one since Confederation — line the walls. In another room, brown-paper covered newspapers wait to be transferred onto microfilm, a process that
hasn’t been completed because of a funding shortage. Michelle Walters, manager of St. John’s public libraries, says it’s difficult to run such an extensive library on a tight budget. “We run a shoe-string operation in many ways and we do a tremendous service. We’re running here 3,000 Internet bookings a month and a lot of that is Industry Canada funding,” Walters tells The Independent. The 96 public libraries operating across the province currently share an $8-million budget. In St. John’s, three libraries share $1.7 million — with the A.C. Hunter claiming $1.4 million. “It’s difficult at times. We’re trying to do the best we can and we’re certainly not the only department that’s looking for more funding or that’s under-funded,” Walters says. The library is understaffed and is closed on weekends and early in the evenings, Walters says, adding the shared location with the arts and culture centre isn’t ideal. “Personally, I’d give my eye teeth to have a standalone main library in a much more accessible location it would just rock my socks … but I have to work within the system,” Walters says. “We are the holders of the paper history of Newfoundland and Labrador and it’s something that I would like to see extra space for. “As for the leaks, we’re working around the leaks and I have to say that Transportation and Works has done everything that they can do within See “Falling through,” page 4
JULY 17, 2005
Coaker ‘fought for a decent working wage’
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“He fought for a decent working wage,” adds human rights worker and Independent columnist Ivan Morgan. “He fought for decent working conditions, a decent pension, he literally reorganized the fishery … he was almost single-handedly responsible for getting rid of that feudal society.” Although Coaker did not achieve all his goals, and was later criticized for accepting the knighthood and adopting Water Street ways, he is remembered as a creative thinker, tireless fighter for the working class and a Newfoundlander of great depth and vision. For these reasons, The Independent panel selected William Coaker as one of Newfoundland and Labrador’s top 10 Navigators. Lieutenant-Governor Ed Roberts — currently working on a master’s thesis on Coaker —agrees heartily with the choice. “He was astonishing creatively, astonishing politically, and very much a Newfoundlander,” says Roberts. “No question he was one of the 10 most important figures in our history.” William Ford Coaker was born on Oct. 19, 1871 in St. John’s, to a lowermiddle class family on the south side of town. He left school early — maybe as young as age 11 — to work on the city’s harbourfront. At age 16, he moved out to Pike’s Arm, Notre Dame Bay, to manage a branch location of McDougall and Templeman — some accounts peg it as a general store; others, a lobster canning facility. Four years later, he took over the business himself, but met with little success. According to some accounts, when his business failed, he all but disappeared to the farm he had established on an island (“Coakerville”) in Dildo Run. There he studied books, newspapers and other information voraciously, absorbing all he could about the world’s labour movements. He emerged in 1908, armed with charisma, ideas, and determination. “There’s a lot of mythology, and a lot of it Coaker himself created,” says Roberts. “The official story is in 1895 he disappeared from Pike’s Arm, disappeared into Coakerville … and emerged full-fledged, like Moses coming down off the mountain. “But he was back and forth to St. John’s relatively frequently … and though the FPU was very much his creation, it wasn’t an act of imagination. He read widely and picked up ideas here and there, somewhat incoherently.” On Nov. 2, 1908, Coaker held the first meeting of the Fishermen’s Protective Union, arriving with a draft constitution in hand. The next night, 19 supporters showed up for a follow-up gathering, and the ball was rolling. “He came out of nowhere, and travelled from town to town on foot,” says Morgan. “And spoke in countless places with great passion and showed many fishermen that their plight could be overcome, they could defeat the grip the merchants had on their industry. “He brought something to the northeast coast, through sheer dint of personal effort, personal charm, personal force. He was called everything, a Bolshevist, a Marxist, he was certainly somebody who felt people needed to get a better deal for their lives.”
Along the way, he caught the eye of a young Joey Smallwood, who was inspired by the man — and, at age 27, wrote Coaker of Newfoundland: the Man who led the Deep-Sea Fishermen to Power, a thin but fascinating account of observation and reverence. “Smallwood saw how it was done,” says Morgan. “The tireless meeting of people, and speaking in Orange Halls and during church fairs … Smallwood saw what tireless effort and passion could accomplish.” In 1911, Coaker formed the Union Trading Company, which was to import goods and sell them to local members at cost. He went on to establish the Union Export Company, the Union Shipbuilding Company, Union Light and Power. To keep the FPU’s membership informed of the union’s activities and local political events, he started The Fishermen’s Advocate, a weekly newspaper, in 1910. Although the union never did catch on south of Port de Grave, his support was strong along the northeast coast of the island. As Alexander Clark wrote in a letter to the Fishermen’s Advocate in 1912, “We each are pulling hand in hand, and battling for the right. We are all hardy fishermen bold, for Coaker we will fight.” As Coaker himself said, he was seeking “the answer for the toiler’s life and its hardship, while so many live lives of ease and luxury.” It appears Coaker always planned to use the political arena to further his agenda, and in the 1913 election the Union party ran under what became known as the Bonavista Platform — 23 reforms, including a standardized cull of fish, hiring of trade agents, weekly publication of overseas fish prices, educational reforms, old-age pensions and the establishment of cold-storage bait depots, increasing scientific research. “It’s an amazing social and political document for Newfoundland in 1912,” says Roberts. “Today, they’re commonplace ideas — but were radical solutions then.” In 1919, Coaker’s men, in coalition with Liberal Sir Richard Squires, were successful and became the ruling government. Coaker was named Fisheries minister, a portfolio he held until 1923. Many of his beloved fisheries regulations — including regulation of the quality of salt fish and control of its price — were
implemented. “It was an amazing step forward,” says Roberts. “And they went through several iterations and then fell apart, disastrously … if they had succeeded, it would have revolutionized the saltfish industry.” Why the regulations didn’t work is still the subject of debate — and the topic of Roberts’ research paper. After Coaker’s regulations were officially repealed in 1921, it has been said the politician lost some of his enthusiasm and drive. He stepped down as FPU leader in 1926, and was out of the House of Assembly between 1924 and 1928. He ran for one more session, then officially retired from politics in 1932. Coaker was knighted in 1923 for his work as a leader, businessman, and founder of Port Union. After his retirement, Coaker divided his time between Port Union, Paradise, and Kingston, Jamaica. He died in 1938 in Boston. “Some people would call him a failure,” says Roberts. “He never got to be premier — though he turned it down several times — the union disappeared in the mid-’30s, and his regulations were withdrawn. “By 1924 he was disillusioned with the whole business and started calling for Commission of Government.” There were more serious accusations made about Coaker — that he openly embezzled from his own company, and after a time in politics, took on the trappings of the Water Street merchants he had stood so firmly against. “He certainly changed Newfoundland, very much for the better,” says Roberts. “But he didn’t accomplish the things he wanted to do and you would what would have happened if he did.” As Coaker’s biggest fan, Smallwood wrote in the conclusion to the effusive Coaker of Newfoundland, “Everybody respects him, even those who hate him most bitterly … Coaker will go down in Newfoundland history as the first and greatest champion of the fishermen. “He will long be remembered as the father of the first attempt to place the fishery … upon a modern and scientific basis. I believe myself that he will be regarded by all as the greatest Newfoundlander since John Cabot.” Judges selecting Our Navigators include John Crosbie, John FitzGerald, Noreen Golfman, Ray Guy, Ivan Morgan and Ryan Cleary.
JULY 17, 2005
INDEPENDENTNEWS • 3
Bugging out Spiders and spanworms, mosquitoes and moths, earwigs and earthworms; the bugs of a Newfoundland summer are gross — but harmless By Alisha Morrissey The Independent
hey’re creepy and quick moving, make your skin crawl and attack en masse in the summertime. Just say the word bugs and people’s noses scrunch as they tell you about their biggest, baddest bug experience. While none of the province’s bugs are dangerous or harmful, Lloyd Hollett, one of the entomologists who opened the province’s Insectarium near Deer Lake, admits to a fear of spiders and dragonflies. “Even though you can pick them up in your hands and you can handle them and they won’t hurt you, I’m still scared of them. “We’ve always had fears of insects growing up,” Hollett tells The Independent. “Your parents always said, you know, ‘Don’t touch that, this thing will sting or that thing will bite,’ and in most cases it’s not true.
“People don’t know and people are afraid of what they don’t know.” There are more than 15,000 species of insects in the province — 300 alone are spiders. Many people are terrified of every one, says Hollett, who has 30 years of insect experience. “Most people don’t like things that move fast, like if something is moving slow, you’re not as scared of it.” A few bugs found locally can hurt plants, including the spruce budworm and hemlock looper, which eat softwood trees used in the province’s pulp and paper mills, or the cabbage looper which can destroy gardens of vegetables. Other than a few minor bites or stings, however, there’s “nothing in Newfoundland that could kill you,” Hollett says. Most bugs are just a nuisance, he says, pointing out the spanworm on the island’s east coast and the June bug on the west
coast. “Basically they (spanworm) eat trees — that’s their job. So just because they are eating our trees in our yards causes problems for us, but if there was nobody living in the area and they were eating the trees nobody would hardly notice,” he says. And the pesky beetle that flies around during the evenings in the month of June? “June bugs as far as we’re concerned are totally harmless to us.” June bugs live in the soil, take about two years to mature and then appear as beetles during evening hours. They live only a few days — just long enough to reproduce. Hollett says he doesn’t think the bugs even eat in their adult stages. “When they get in your hair, June bugs have little claws on the end of their legs that are curved and they’re just like Velcro and they’re hard to get out and people get freaked out by them. “They can’t hurt you in any way, shape or form it’s just that people get freaked out when they get something like that in their head — like you would I suppose.” One of the most hated bugs in the province is probably one of the most undisruptive, says Hollett of the dreaded earwig. “That’s why they’re called earwigs because people believed years ago that they’ll crawl in your ear and puncture your eardrum with their pinchers on the end of their tail. Those pinch-
ers are pretty much harmless,” he says. Males have turned in pinchers and females have turned out pinchers, which are sort of like antlers on a deer. “It’s sort of a sexual thing, males fighting over females and that sort of thing.” While there’s cause for concern when a mosquito bites in other provinces, Hollett says it’s unlikely the species of mosquito carrying West Nile Virus has made its home in this province. But the bloodsuckers could be here, and dead crows should be reported to the province’s wildlife department, just to be on the safe side. Hollett got interested in the creepy crawlies when studying to work in the forestry sector. After an introductory course in entomology, he says he was just hooked. “You could study them for 50 years and still not come close to everything that fits in Newfoundland, let alone in the other parts of the world. They’re a fascinating group.” Hollett says most children who pass through the Insectarium aren’t afraid of bugs, but teenagers and adults are even frightened in the butterfly pavilion where hundreds of butterflies flutter around while guests take a stroll through the building. “But that comes from something that happened as a kid … ‘Oh, my brother put something on my neck when I was a kid,’ or something like that.”
‘Alberta should go it alone’ Editor’s note: This column was first printed in the Calgary Sun. Reprinted with permission. By Link Byfield
University of Alberta professor I know sent me a lengthy article he’s trying to get published, entitled: “Let’s get while the getting’s good.” In it, Leon Craig, professor emeritus of political science, lays out a case for Alberta to declare unilateral independence. And he lays it out well. Craig makes no bones about it. Alberta, he says, should go it alone. Almost overnight, we would become one of the most prosperous nations in the world. But — and this is his key point — the main reason to secede is not because Albertans would have more money. Not that there’s anything wrong with money. More importantly, we would create a
country that reflects our own political and social beliefs, values and traditions, and our understanding of the common good. Canada, says Craig, has been so badly governed since the Trudeau era, it has doomed itself to a Third World, banana republic fate. We will become — are in fact becoming — the Argentina of the 21st century. Political corruption gets rewarded instead of punished, productivity slides, and the opportunistic politics of envy becomes the basis of our whole system of national government. The only promising place left in Canada, he concludes, is Alberta. And Alberta owes it to itself, to its future citizens, and to like-minded people in the rest of the country to save itself. As a sovereign and independent nation, he suggests, our population — viable to begin with — would double in 10 years, even allowing for a welcome
exodus of Albertans who would be happier back in Canada. Far more good people move to take advantage of opportunity than flee from it. Our social policies — marriage and family matters, medicare, civil and religious freedoms, etc. — would no longer be imposed by the Supreme Court and a handful of Ottawa mandarins. We could establish our own laws to deal with crime and punishment, and our own separate relationship with the Americans. If we don’t do these things now, he says, we’ll sink with the Canadian ship. The professor dismisses the idea of “refederating” Canada along its original lines of strong provinces and a small central government. He thinks the rest of the country is too far gone to change back to what it was. He even gives short shrift to the “West.” Any attempt to create a new federal-
ism, even in the West, he believes will fail. If other Western provinces, or parts of provinces, want to join Alberta, by becoming part of it, they should be welcomed. All that binds Albertans to Canada, he concludes, is sentiment — an attachment to Canada’s once-illustrious military and pioneer past, and to our own provincial part in it. We must now face the fact that the old Canada is gone forever and the new Canada is disgusting. So what are we to make of all this? It’s hard to argue against his analysis of the problem. The Trudeau delusion that you can build a credible nation with “national social programs” is so shallow it’s absurd. And given the stern rejection of the Reform party by Eastern Canadians, it’s impossible to refute that the only forceful thing Albertans can do is to separate. Where I disagree with my friend is whether we owe any allegiance to other
Canadians. What is driving more and more Albertans towards separatism is the fact that our original constitutional arrangement — the political bargain on which Canada was built — has long since been obliterated by the national government. Had that not happened, Canada would not be in its present ugly mess. Alberta is the only province with both the means and the motive to force a restoration of those original terms. Not by asking. By telling. But we owe it to our nine federal partners — the other provinces — to state the terms on which we would be willing to stay. This is something we have never done. Only if those terms are refused should we decide on independence. Link Byfield is a columnist with the Calgary Sun, chairman of the Citizens Centre for Democracy and Freedom, and an Alberta senator-in-waiting.
4 • INDEPENDENTNEWS
JULY 17, 2005
Early retirement not in cards for fishery workers: Regan By Clare-Marie Gosse The Independent
espite the best efforts of lobbyists, the federal government has revealed it has no intention of offering an early retirement package for fishery workers in Newfoundland and Labrador, The Independent has learned. In a June 28, 2005, letter from federal Fisheries Minister Geoff Regan to St. John’s fishery advocate, Flo Yetman, Regan states: “At this time the Government of Canada has no plans to offer additional assistance programs in Atlantic Canada.” The reply was sent in response to a letter from Yetman, requesting an early retirement package for fish plant workers who fell through the cracks of a 1998 retirement program operated by Human Resources and Skills Development Canada. The 1998 package was part of a five-year, $730-million program to address the collapse of the groundfish fishery.
DETERIORATED LIVELIHOOD Yetman says her concern is for workers who fell just under the package’s age-55 cut off, and are now in their 50s and 60s and suffering the effects of a deteriorated livelihood. “We have people out there that are still suffering from this early retirement that they didn’t get,” says Yetman. “They can’t get jobs anywhere else, they’re too old to uproot, they’re living on welfare and they’re still starving to death.” In his letter, Regan writes: “It should be noted that issues related to fish processing fall under provincial jurisdiction and therefore are outside the mandate of the Department of Fisheries and Oceans.” He goes on to say he has forwarded Yetman’s letter to Human Resources and Skills Development Canada — the department responsi-
ble for administering the 1998 retirement program. Yetman says it’s another case of passing the buck. In this case, to the department that “mismanaged” the previous retirement program. “Because people got it who should never have got it, people who were dead and there were cheques going out to them. It was complete chaos … we had people who committed suicide over it … this was a horrific time.” The Fish, Food and Allied Workers union sent in an official retirement proposal to the federal government in March of this year. The proposal called for a five-year plan, expected to cost over $120 million and depending on the criteria, benefit as many as 3,600 people. The plan would allow workers currently under the age of 55 to eventually be eligible. The union proposed age-plusyears-of-service criteria — a formula lacking from the 1998 federal early retirement program, which saw workers under the age cutoff but with more experience, lose out. Yetman is determined to continue pursuing the issue, but says she’s doubtful the provincial government will offer a solution to the problem — particularly in light of recent fish plant closures. Provincial Fisheries Minister Trevor Taylor recently expressed support for the retirement proposal, but only if the federal government funded 70 per cent of the cost. “I think the province could do a whole lot. If our politicians were doing what they’re supposed to be doing, we wouldn’t be into this situation that we are in today,”says Yetman. The province recently announced an $18-million package to help crab plant workers qualify for employment insurance this year as a result of the fishery’s early closure. GENERAL MANAGER John Moores email@example.com
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Library Technician Dawn Lahey with a sample of the Newfoundland Collection at the A.C. Hunter Library.
Paul Daly/The Independent
‘Falling through the cracks’ From page 1 budget to try and find and tap off the problems with a very, very old building.” She hopes a “champion” will step forward to help with publicity and fundraising for the building and the resources. “I’m part of a system that serves the whole province and as much as these things would be of benefit to the citizens here … I realize that there are communities 100 kilometres away from a library and you have to weigh these factors and realize that some of these communities have no library at all.” John FitzGerald, an avid researcher of Newfoundland and Labrador history, says he took a tour of the basement archives a few years back and “was not impressed. “There’s stuff there that you just can’t
find anywhere else … it is definitely a treasure trove, there’s no other way to describe it. It is definitely a treasure trove and my problem is if I was allowed down there on a regular basis you wouldn’t get me out of it.” He says he’d like to see something done about all the issues the library faces. “Our culture and our history deserve no less. I think it would be important to have an appropriate place for our public library … we haven’t had a glorious history of supporting it and I think we could do better. I’m not criticizing anyone in particular. I think what has happened is that it’s falling through the cracks.” Education Minister Tom Hedderson says the provincial library system is on the same priority list as leaky school roofs and will be dealt with to the best of the department’s ability. “In the general sense with the opening
of The Rooms, anything that’s associated with archives will be dealt with through that particular Room I guess … and I would assume that anything of treasure value for the province will be looked at and stored in a safe manner in our main storage area now which would be The Rooms,” he says. A department spokesperson, however, says there is no plan to move anything from the Newfoundland Collection to The Rooms. Hedderson says a review off all libraries is ongoing and he’s hoping the consultants doing the review will come up with a creative plan to solve some of the outstanding issues. “As an educator, I certainly understand and realize the importance of having learning resource centres, libraries, across the province in a network and it is a high priority.”
Japanese trawler cited
he Japanese trawler Xuiho Maru #88 has been issued a citation for fishing violations on the Grand Banks.
Canadian inspectors boarded the trawler, which was fishing near the nose of the Banks, on July 11 and handed down a citation for illegal net-
ting. A liner inside the mesh was found to be an average seven millimetres smaller than the 130 millimetres allowed by the Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organization (NAFO), which monitors fishing outside Canada’s 200-mile limit. Officials with the federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans confirm the vessel had two citations levelled against it in 2003 — one for the improper use of ropes and the other for an observer performing unauthorized duties. At the time of the most recent boarding, the Xuiho Maru #88 was fishing turbot. The stock, as reported in last week’s edition of The Independent, is at its lowest level in history, despite a rebuilding plan introduced two years ago. 5,500 TONNES A scientific report, obtained by The Independent, was prepared by scientists with NAFO and reveals the turbot stock was overfished last year by as much as 5,500 tonnes. NAFO critics say the turbotrebuilding plan isn’t working. Last year’s quota — the first year of the rebuilding plan — was set at 20,000 tonnes, a sharp decrease from 2003’s quota of 42,000 tonnes. Scientists, meantime, had advised NAFO to limit the quota to 16,000 tonnes. The recommendation was ignored, as was the quota — 25,5000 tonnes of turbot were taken in 2004, 5,500 tonnes above the quota. Twelve foreign vessels have received 24 citations to date this year for fishing violations — surpassing the total for all of last year, which stood at 15. Under NAFO rules, Canada cannot arrest ships for breaking the rules. Rather, it’s up to the home country of a vessel charged with illegal fishing to follow through with court action. Over the past decade, more than 300 citations have been issued against foreign vessels. Most of the citations were issued without publicity, often against boats that have been cited frequently but face no penalty in their home country. Fishing advocates in this province have repeatedly called for Canada to take custodial management of the Grand Banks, a move Ottawa has been reluctant to make. Foreign fishing outside the 200-mile limit impacts fishing in Canadian waters in that groundfish stocks, which are migratory, don’t recognize the imaginary dotted line. — Alisha Morrissey
JULY 17, 2005
INDEPENDENTNEWS • 5
Methadone demand higher than expected
‘I think it’s getting worse instead of better’ From page 1
By Stephanie Porter The Independent
n the first two weeks of operation, more than 110 individuals approached the St. John’s temporary methadone clinic — the city’s first — for an appointment. And the intakes show no signs of slowing down. “We have no idea of how many people out there want methadone,” says Barry Hewitt, manager of addictions services for the Eastern Health Authority. “There are no surveys we’re aware of for this. There is word of mouth, but there you go.” Before the temporary methadone clinic opened June 27, those seeking methadone treatment had to make a monthly trip to the prescribing doctor in Grand FallsWindsor. “We knew the doctor in Grand Falls had around 100 clients on methadone from St. John’s, and we figured most of them will eventually try to get in here,” says Hewitt. “The surprise for us is we’re seeing about equal numbers of new clients from St. John’s.” Methadone, a narcotic, is prescribed as one method of treating addiction to opiate drugs — heroin, codeine, Percocet or OxyContin, for example. “(The client) is still chemically addicted, but they’re not going to get that high (from methadone),” says Hewitt. “It could stabilize them enough so they can function. There’s no impairment, they can drive … but they do have to take it every day or they’ll suffer withdrawal.” There is no doubt, says Hewitt, that most of the people the new clinic sees are addicted to OxyContin. And that drug, he points out, has only been a real problem in the province in the last few years. In 2001-02, he says he saw only two cases of OxyContin abuse come through the St. John’s recovery centre. The next year, there were between 35 and 40 cases. The next, well over 100. And on it goes. “The odd time, people are addicted to Percs … I have yet to hear of anyone (at the methadone clinic) addicted to heroin.”
Barry Hewitt at the make-shift methadone clinic located in the Recovery Centre in St. John’s. Rhonda Hayward/The Independent
The St. John’s methadone clinic was a dose, and drink it in front of the pharmarecommendation of the provincial govern- cist. ment’s OxyContin task force. The doctors working part-time at the Currently, two St. John’s doctors spend clinic are two of only a small handful of two afternoons each per week at the clinic. physicians in the province with the proper Before a patient is given an appointment to licence to prescribe methadone. see the prescribing doctor, The interim clinic, he or she must go through located in the Recovery a thorough assessment Centre in Pleasantville, “For our part, and examination. is by appointment only. sometimes it is hard, While Hewitt reports Hewitt says the permathe majority of people nent clinic should be we know there are who contact the clinic are open and ready by late “appropriate” for methapeople out there with fall — it will be fulldone treatment, he says time, with a pharmacy on it’s not a good choice for problems, but we have site. everyone. Some may be Setting up the service to wait for people to advised to try counseling has been “quite a proask for help. first, or de-tox. cess,” but the response “You’re prescribing has shown Hewitt it is one narcotic to take the definitely needed. Barry Hewitt “For our part, someplace of another one, for times it is hard, we many people it does well,” he says. “But there are risk factors.” know there are people out there with Methadone is also a major commitment problems, but we have to wait for people for patients: every day, they must go to to ask for help. We wait for people to their specific pharmacy, ask for their daily come to us.”
$300 million from its 8.5 per cent cut alone. With oil prices currently hovering close to $60 a barrel and expected to rise, the amount is likely to be far higher. In its July 10 issue, The Independent ran a story highlighting the difficulty of obtaining figures from the federal government regarding its share of the offshore. The provincial government says it is unable to speak to Ottawa’s revenues. MP John Duncan, Natural Resources critic for the federal Conservative Party, says the department he shadows doesn’t track oil revenues. Does he think there’s enough transparency? “No I don’t,” he says. “I don’t and I think it’s getting worse instead of better, in a sense.” Prior to being elected, the Danny Williams government expressed its intent to acquire the federal government’s Hibernia share. It was understood the matter would be addressed after the recent Atlantic Accord negotiations were resolved. “Our stance is remained unchanged,” says Natural Resources Minister Ed Byrne. “I mean, we believe that share should be transferred to the province … having said that, there have been no recent discussions associated with that. I guess from our point of view we remain open and the federal government remains closed at this point.” Byrne adds the provincial government was disturbed to read a February 2005 article in the National Post suggesting Ottawa was considering selling its Hibernia stake. Hours before unveiling its budget in 2004, the federal government announced it would be selling its last remaining 19 per cent stake in Petro-Canada, a onetime Crown corporation. The profit from that was forecast at around $2 billion.
Some have questioned Newfoundland and Labrador’s right to Hibernia’s 8.5 per cent cut, considering the federal government essentially rescued the operation in 1992 after an investor pulled out and the project shut down. “We recognize that the federal government became involved when the Hibernia project was in jeopardy,” says Byrne, “and obviously it was one of the reasons why the project was able to continue and is the success story that it is today. “Having said that, it has been our position and our party’s position for some time, that that share is a provincial resource. We feel that the federal government have more than gotten a fair return from that.” If the province was to acquire the share, it would go a long way towards making Newfoundland and Labrador the principal beneficiary of the offshore — a stipulation of the Atlantic Accord. Despite its conservative budget estimate of $215 million in oil revenues for the 2005- 2006 fiscal year, the province is much more likely to clear between $600 and $700 million, says Locke. Next year that figure could reach $1 billion. Royalty levels from the two currently producing fields, Hibernia and particularly Terra Nova, promise to escalate, not to mention 2006 oil production from White Rose. Locke estimates Terra Nova could achieve payout status as early as this year, which would see the province take 30 per cent of all profits. “Based upon reasonable estimates for oil prices, this industry will generate extra revenue for the government, somewhere in the realm of $600 (million) to $1 billion a year for the next 20 years,” says Locke. “Things will start to turn around in terms of the government’s financial position.”
Marine Atlantic hires Alberta firm to shoot local images; photographer irate By Alisha Morrissey The Independent
t least one local photographer is angry at Marine Atlantic for choosing an Alberta firm to do promotional work for the Crown corporation. Reel Life Photos, a two-photographer team based in Alberta, won the contract after submitting what a Marine Atlantic spokeswoman calls “the best proposal,” but local photographer Eric Walsh, who also bid on the contract, says the contract should have been awarded locally. “They sent out a request for proposals and they reviewed 125 photogra-
phers and couldn’t find a photographer in the Maritimes, including Newfoundland, that they felt was fit to do the photography,” Walsh tells The Independent. “I take issue with that and how could they ever go to Alberta for a photographer, really? I’m sure that it would never happen over there.” Walsh says he’s spoken with several other photographers about the contract and he says they have all been surprised or angry the work was offered to a Western Canadian firm. Two other local photographers that applied for the contract weren’t available to comment before The Independent’s press deadline. “I’m just appalled,” Walsh says. “We
have the expertise here, and here in Newfoundland alone we have many award-winning photographers that they can’t choose a photographer out of Newfoundland at least choose someone out of Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island or New Brunswick.” The contract requires photographs be taken of the interior and exterior of the Marine Atlantic fleet for promotional purposes. The value of the contract isn’t known. “Sure, I made an application myself,” Walsh says. “I may not have made it, but at least give it to somebody here within 500 miles.” Tara Laing, spokeswoman for
SHIPPING NEWS Keeping an eye on the comings and goings of the ships in St. John’s harbour. Information provided by the coast guard traffic centre. MONDAY, JULY 11 Vessels arrived: George R. Pearkes, Canada, from Conception Bay; Anticost, Canada, from Orphan Basin; Atlantic Kingfisher, Canada, from Terra Nova Vessels departed: Oceanex Avalon, Canada, to Montreal; Burin Sea, Canada, to Terra Nova. TUESDAY, JULY 12 Vessels arrived: Maersk Norseman, Canada, from Hibernia; Dtalassa, French, from Spain. Vessels departed: Maersk Chan-
cellor, Canada, to White Rose; Irving Eskimo, Canada, to Saint John; Atlantic Kingfisher, Canada, to Terra Nova; Alex Gordon, Canada, to Sea. WEDNESDAY, JULY 13 Vessels arrived: Maersk Chancellor, Canada, from Lewis Hill. Vessels departed: ASL Sanderling, Canada, to Halifax. THURSDAY, JULY 14 Vessels arrived: Wilfred Templeman, Canada, from Sea; Atlantic Eagle, Canada, from Terra Nova; Gulf Spirit 1, Canada, from Sea; Cabot, Canada, from Montreal. Vessels departed: Burin Sea, Canada, to Terra Nova; Atlantic
Hawk, Canada, to White Rose; Maersk Norseman, Canada, to Hibernia; Atlantic Eagle, Canada, to Terra Nova. FRIDAY, JULY 15 Vessels arrived: Atlantic Kingfisher, Canada, from Terra Nova; Maersk Nascopie, Canada, from Hibernia; Atlantic Eagle, Canada, Terra Nova; Cicero, Canada, from Halifax; Atlantic Hawk, Canada, from White Rose; Atlantic Osprey, Canada, from Lewis Hills. Vessels departed: Cabot, Canada, to Montreal; Atlantic Kingfisher, Canada, to Terra Nova; Atlantic Eagle, Canada, to Hibernia; Maersk Nascopie, Canada to Hibernia.
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Marine Atlantic, says as it turns out, one of the photographers on the Alberta team chosen for the contract was born in Newfoundland — although he hasn’t been home in some 20 years. She says the company, Reel Life Photos, is more than qualified. While Laing admits she would have loved for the contract to go locally, she says the corporation couldn’t discriminate against a company outside Atlantic Canada and Reel Life Photos provided the best overall proposal. Laing says Marine Atlantic must be open to proposals across Canada and the best proposal must be chosen. “As a person requesting services, and I work for a Crown corporation, I have
to follow certain rules and regulations … and I’m not allowed to state that I can’t accept certain proposals or that they’re not allowed to apply because they aren’t from the Atlantic provinces,” Laing says. “I put out the proposal, it was reviewed and in fact, I also solicited advice from an outside firm who took all my proposals as well and came up with the same conclusion. “And I can understand where they’re coming from, but I mean as a Crown corporation I have to leave it open to whoever wants to apply. I currently have a request for proposals out now and I’m receiving proposals from all over Canada.”
6 • INDEPENDENTNEWS
JULY 17, 2005
Money and vision A
s you can see faithful reader, I have turned my semi-regular columnist gig into a weekly occurrence. This is partly due to some positive response, and mostly an effort to relieve some of the burden from the shoulders of our editorial team. When I first got involved with the newspaper, I considered it a small financial undertaking and relatively easy to produce — thank god for naivete. I think most accomplishments in life would not happen if people really knew what they were getting themselves into. In fact, The Independent takes an enormous amount of energy to produce, and I do not know if we have ever had a workweek that has ended before midnight on Friday night. It is definitely a work of passion, as the gifted writers who create this weekly have slightly better hourly wages than Nike factory workers in Malaysia. If you are one of our veteran readers (a whole year) you will remember some of the
Publish or perish changes that have occurred. Between the new format and the expanded size, I believe we are now getting very close to what we imagined: a paper that is a good read, any day of the week. If we can entertain and inform in an interesting way, we are well on our way to the real goal — giving Newfoundlanders perspective on the events that deeply affect them. On a personal note, I am glad to be doing an opinion column. It is simply that, my opinion. It has my name on it and a slightly out-of-date picture. I have always been unhappy with opinion columns in papers that are not signed. I guess people assume the publisher or editor directs them, and I wonder the same thing myself.
Some have suggested the column and paper in general are a means to further business interests. Given Humber Valley’s customers are almost all outside the country, that doesn’t make much sense — especially after you see The Independent’s income statement to date. This paper is an investment in our province, and hopefully will become the business success it is on its way to becoming. For now, it is a passion for all of us involved. That said, it is hard to do an opinion column without giving your opinion on things you know something about. This week’s topic is tourism. It was reported recently that the lion’s share of our beefed up provincial marketing budget is being directed at southern Ontario, as the majority of “tourists” who enter the province have been tracked from there. Excuse me for one second, but did anybody consider these could be Newfoundlanders coming home? If so, they do not need to be advertised to. Perhaps they are conventioneers who
like to come to the capital for culture (George Street culture mostly). I don’t know if that type of tourist requires a lot of new marketing dollars either. Maybe it’s just me, but I do not run into a lot of Ontario tourists. Lots of transplanted Newfoundlanders, but as a group, I would say in my experience in the tourism business over the last 10 years, the Ontario contingent would not be the majority. When we started to market the Humber Valley Resort outside the province, we purposely avoided Ontario and Canada in general. The reason is that in these markets you are starting from a net negative position. The perception of Newfoundland is not a favorable one when trying to convince someone to invest tourism money here or plan a real vacation. Yes, there is definitely a curiosity, and I think that’s another reason why St. John’s is one of Canada’s most popular convention destinations. But is that the basis of longterm tourism growth? I don’t think so.
The tourism product that we have is our people and wonderful culture, and our spectacular natural beauty. Therefore we marketed the resort in places that don’t have what we have — namely larger urban centers in Europe and the northeastern U.S. About 40 years ago my grandmother visited St. Pete’s Beach in Florida, and I could not imagine how much money my family has spent there since. That is why I sometimes wonder how much bang we really get from the one-day cruise stops. There are so many beautiful areas in this province outside St. John’s that could be long-term repeat tourism destinations with investment in infrastructure and marketing. Is it the answer to every bay looking for new industry? No, but there are some real gems here. Having been to a lot of places that call themselves tourism destinations, I know we truly are a world-class destination. All we need is the money and the vision … hmmm — that should be good for a few months of columns.
‘Debilitating sense of victimhood’ Dear editor, I was, in many ways, very impressed with the letter from Matthew McCabe in the July 3-9 edition of The Independent. This young man has obviously given a lot of thought to the issues of the day in his home province and has an awareness that many of his elders do not. I am, however, disturbed at a reference to what I see as an unfortunate and damaging obsession: how others see us. How in the world does a 12year-old get the idea that “some people in Canada … think we are all poor, lazy and stupid?” I have just returned from 21 years living in Nova Scotia, Alberta and Ontario and I saw no evidence of this. I heard the occasional newfie reference, but I also heard the occasional redneck reference. I heard references to “lotus-land work ethics,” references to Que-
becers and references to natives. Most of the people who made these references were thoughtless, the others (to use two thirds of the characteristics young Matthew listed) were stupid and lazy. Worrying that others see us negatively is self-destructive, counter-productive and, based on my time away, not warranted. It is likely to lead to the worst kind of useless navel gazing and nationalistic wallowing rather than constructive engagement with the problems that face us. Young people get their information somewhere — some of it, no doubt, from older people. If the older generations can’t move on and stop encumbering the young with a debilitating sense of victimhood then they should seriously consider saying nothing. David Paddon, St. John’s
‘Scapegoats for far too long’ Dear editor, towns, between cultures and nations, David Ahenakew, a recipient of the and even between religions and Order of Canada in 1978, has been denominations. found guilty of promoting hatred As for the Jewish people they do not against the Jewish people and fined need any more hatred directed at them $1,000. He had told a reporter the Jews because they have been the scapegoats were a disease and Hitler was to be for far too long. praised for “frying six million” of In recent years the harshness has them during the been somewhat Second World War. toned down by the He made those deroguse of curriculum Literacy and travel atory comments some materials such as two and a half years The Diary of Anne has muted many ago when he was in Frank and the telehis late 60s. vising of the truth a potential bigot The only arguments about the psychotic but we will never Ahenakew could Hitler and his barmuster in his own baric methods of fully eradicate defense were that his extermination, and such hatred. comments to a rea movement toward porter were in confiecumenism in the dence and off the churches has record. He then claimed that he, as a improved society. Literacy and travel First Nations’ Canadian, was being has muted many a potential bigot but discriminated against by being found we will never fully eradicate such guilty. hatred. Therefore, the onus is on our We first must recognize that no one legislature to pass legislation strong will eradicate racism from the earth enough to bury forever the evil lurking because some members of our human in the souls of some people and a furrace are so insecure and plagued with ther onus is on our judicial system to such a sense of inferiority that they sentence human rights violators to the will always look for a whipping boy to full extent of the law. scourge. We find this in the schoolAubrey Smith, yard, between towns or sections of Grand Falls-Windsor
AN INDEPENDENT VOICE FOR NEWFOUNDLAND & LABRADOR
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Monsters and madness C
ertain events — death and monster hunts in Fortune Bay — stick with a reporter. Of the thousands of stories written over the years, only a few stand out, speed bumps in the paper trail of life. They’re the clippings a newsman keeps, articles with dramatic headlines like No fishing and ‘Monster’ beached — hoisted in place on the front page with thick, black Jesus type, so named for the font reserved for special occasions like Christ’s long-awaited second coming. To the funeral first, and the July evening in 1992 when John Crosbie closed the northern cod fishery, frightening the daylights out of a junior reporter wide-eyed enough to think Newfoundland’s end days were near and Armageddon was sailing, full tilt, toward the outports (it’s turned out to be more of a crawl). “Hitler wouldn’t do this,” the crowd snarled and spit at Crosbie’s face as Constabulary officers shuffled him out of a downtown St. John’s hotel. “They don’t need to go berserk trying to batter on doors to frighten me,” said Crosbie, cabinet champion of the day. “I’m not going to be bullied.” And he wasn’t. Besides an officer’s broken nose and the Petty Harbour fishermen who tried their darndest to ram their way into the room where Crosbie sat, my memory of that night includes Crosbie’s response to whether, under the moratorium, a Newfoundlander would still be allowed to jig a cod for the supper table. Hell yes, Crosbie said. If the stock was that far gone that a boy, standing on a wharf, couldn’t remove a single fish from the North Atlantic without it jeopardizing the entire stock — well then, the cod were beyond salvation and hope would be lost. Welcome to 2005. There won’t be any cod jigging off the northeast coast or Labrador this summer. Not since 2002, in fact, has there been a food fishery. The 13-year anniversary of that fateful night when
Fighting Newfoundlander Crosbie shut down the 500-year-old fishery passed by earlier this month with barely a mention. Oh right, there was that one story about northern cod scientist George Rose losing his research funding, but not much else about the fish that once fuelled this place. It’s been written off, forgotten about. And that’s surprising, considering in 1991, the year before the moratorium and the package that came with it, the northern cod fishery was worth $700 million, representing six per cent of all goods and services produced in the land. Thirteen years multiplied by $700 million equals $9.1 billion. Deduct from that the $4.5 billion in federal fish aid and you’re left with about $4.5 billion Ottawa owes us. Then there are places like Harbour Breton — priceless, to us, worthless to the Canadian government. Every now and then I consider it a healthy practice to pull out the newspaper from July 3, 1992 to remind myself how the moratorium was supposed to last two years, how the feds were going to get to the bottom of what happened to the cod (as if the mismanagement was a mystery), and how the stocks would be rebuilt to historic levels. Burn your boats and fishing poles, there’s no hope — not with Ottawa looking after the shop. There are those who wonder what’s spawned the nationalist sentiments as of late. They’re born from a slap too many in the face. They’re born from newspaper headlines, yellow and dog-eared, kept for 13 years in a pile of papers. They’re spawned from parents Mr. Tuberculosis and Mrs. Baby Bonus, who, in turn, gave birth to Mr. UI and
Mrs. Make Work. The names of their children are Mr. Fury and Mrs. Outrage, whose children, God bless them, are colour coded pink, white and green. But clippings aren’t the only thing a reporter packs away. Audiotapes of Geoff Stirling are treasures to keep forever. Conversations about crop circles, John Lennon and the particular dimension you’re sitting in are simply timeless. There’s no disrespect intended in saying that, Stirling is appreciated as much as any living legend. An interview with Frank Moores is another tape worth keeping. Any man from Harbour Grace has to be a good one (when you’re from there yourself). Whisper what you will about Frank, his love of wine and women, he was a good man by all accounts — a good leader, a great Newfoundlander. His words, his stories about the fishery and our place are worth repeating (see pages 8 and 9). But of all the tapes and newspaper clippings filed away, none are as fascinating as the story about the monster that washed up a few years back on Paltry beach near St. Bernard’s. The story is a memorable one — not just because an unidentified creature was coughed up from the depths of Fortune Bay — but because of the interest it generated from around the world. Reporters telephoned and faxed from the four corners of the planet, curious about the mysterious creature that turned out to be a whale, skinned like a grape. It’s too bad a real live monster didn’t eat all the codfish. We could have stuck a harpoon in its gut and ended it there. It’s not so easy to do away with apathy and indifference. Please God in heaven the ink will never run dry. Ryan Cleary is managing editor of The Independent. firstname.lastname@example.org
JULY 17, 2005
INDEPENDENTNEWS • 7
Frank Moores: our greatest premier? He gets Ivan Morgan’s vote because the province’s second premier chose not to be a saviour
or many years I have argued that Frank Moores was the greatest premier ever. Being a Newfoundlander and a tiny bit political, I love to debate Joey supporters, Peckfordites, Clydites, and Williams’ boosters about why their guy pales in comparison to Frank. But today I am sad, because today there won’t be lots of beer and lively debate. Today I will state my case soberly, because despite the fact that I am a contrary SOB who would happily argue the world is flat, in my heart I think this week we lost the greatest premier we have had since Confederation. Younger Newfoundlanders cannot imagine what the last years of the Smallwood administration were like. He skated perilously close to dictatorship. By the late 1960s there was a growing tide of people tired and fed up with his tyranny. Most intelligent people had come to see what Smallwood had become. People like Ray Guy showed them. But what to do about it?
Rant & Reason Most Newfoundlanders didn’t want a revolution, or a revolutionary. They needed a leader who was a reflection of who they were, a person who represented their future, who represented optimism and stability. They needed a leader who embodied what Newfoundland could become. They found that leader in Frank Moores. Why do I think he was great? He was great because, in my heart of hearts, I don’t believe he even really wanted the job. I think he was motivated by duty more than anything. I think he would have been just as happy to sell the family business and try his luck in the big leagues of international finance, as he eventually did. He was great because, in the face of
YOUR VOICE Competition ‘welcome’ in real estate Dear editor, I wish to comment on an article Real estate reality, New Brunswick company trying to sell homes privately on the web meets with resistance in Newfoundland and Labrador reported by Clare-Marie Gosse in the May 22-28 edition of The Independent. The article seemed to present an overall impression that real estate companies in this province are actively campaigning against companies such as the Propertyguys.com doing business here. In my opinion, this is completely untrue. As owner of a top-producing realestate company in this city, I welcome competitors of all sorts, as I believe competition only results in better, more efficient service for our clients. As a business owner, I do not look for methods of keeping potential rivals from ever entering the market, I simply rely on the superior service my company provides to win out with clients in the long term. Ms. Gosse’s article also gives a rather one-sided view of the intricacies of privately selling your home. While it is true that a person may save money by not using a licensed realtor in that they do not pay the fees
that accompany a realtor, it is also true that a realtor adds value to the transaction that will likely see dollars in the consumers pocket in the end. Working with a realtor, a home will likely sell more quickly, as a dedicated representative is working towards that sale at all times while the client continues their day-to-day life. A realtor is well versed in the local markets, allowing him or her to negotiate intelligently on a seller’s behalf with potential buyers, often resulting in a higher selling price than a private sale might garner. A realtor also has knowledge about closing details and legalities that a private citizen likely would not, thereby removing confusion and avoiding possible legal issues. The benefits of using a realtor are many, and it costs nothing to initially contact one and find out in detail what services he or she can provide. The issue of whether to use a realtor is, of course, a personal one. However, I felt it important to provide your readers with all the information — which, by definition, must include the benefits of using a realtor. Debbie Hanlon President, Coldwell Banker Hanlon
vicious political opposition, he maintained a calm, affable charm. He was unflappable. He was measured and steady. He was a leader. He and his Tories did what had to be done, and they did it with dignity, style and principle. He was great because, after his eventual victory over Smallwood, he refused to allow a witch hunt. I am no historian, so I cannot pronounce authoritatively, but I am led to believe that many in the Smallwood administration could have been made very uncomfortable had their affairs been carefully scrutinized after the Tory victory. Frank had no stomach for it. Onwards and upwards was his style. Frank Moores looked to the future. What was done was done. He was great because he inherited a dispirited, nepotism-riddled bureaucracy and set about bringing a new professionalism to the workings of the provincial government. Frank was great because he allowed his ministers latitude. Under his administration, ministers had their own profiles.
He was self-confident and secure enough to allow others to show leadership and initiative. How long would a cocky, selfconfident young Brian Peckford last in the Williams administration? After decades of faceless nobodies rubberstamping every pronouncement of Joseph Smallwood, he was a breath of fresh air. He was great because he was, remained, and died a passionate believer in Newfoundland. He claimed his greatest accomplishment was restoring true democracy to Newfoundland and Labrador. I could have fun with that over a few beers, but I will concede he sure started us all down the path. To me his greatest accomplishment was resigning after two terms. His principled decision that two terms was plenty, not only for him, but for us, set a standard that no premier since him has dared to test. Considering our political history, I submit that single act spoke louder than any other.
Frank Moores was no saviour. He was a professional. For that I salute him. I was fortunate enough as a small boy to see him on the campaign trail. He knew the necessity of waving to the cheering crowds, of rallying the faithful, of stirring the emotions. But even I could tell he never once believed his own press. He always knew who he was, and who we were, and we were all the better for it. These fundamental things have made all the difference to every one of us who have chosen to live and make our lives here. I think we owe him a great debt. I don’t think any premier since Moores has contributed so much. I think they have all stood on Frank’s shoulders. I think any premier pursuing greatness (a noble ambition) needs to learn from Frank. For his easy courage, immense charm and solid leadership, and most importantly, for choosing not to be a saviour, he is my vote for greatest premier ever. Thanks Frank. Ivan Morgan can be reached at email@example.com
OUT OF WORK
After only two weeks of operating the Provincial Art Gallery in its new home, The Rooms, art gallery director Gordon Laurin has been dismissed from his post. Laurin, who travelled from Nova Scotia for the position, was hired last year. In response to the dismissal, officials with the Visual Artists Newfoundland and Labrador expressed concern over what they see as an example of the “ongoing instability” the gallery has experienced since the province took ownership in 2003. The association has requested a response from The Rooms, officials of which hadn’t commented as of The Independent’s press deadline. Paul Daly/The Independent
Why tourists come here in droves
One tourist captures St. John's Town Crier, Christopher Pickard on video. Pickard entertains tourists during the summer.
Dear editor, Recently, in the media, I’ve noticed a growing trend. It seems more and more people are taking up resort bashing here on the island’s west coast. Many people in the Humber Valley are questioning the viability and local effects of such places as Humber Valley Resort and the new development announced recently for Steady Brook. When Humber Valley Resort was first announced, I admit I was skeptical and asked the same questions being asked today. What effect will this have on our economy, and why would Europeans fly halfway around the world to our doorstep when they have their pick of the finest resorts in the world in their own backyard? Well, here’s how I see things today after experiencing and seeing first-hand these developments. In terms of economy, I work in the
construction industry and let me tell you, skilled trades people are hard to come by. Almost anyone who can swing a hammer is currently working at the resort. Not only that, but materials are purchased most often locally. This means more money is being pumped into our area, increasing business for local retailers. Also, once these resorts become fully operational, they’re going to attract hundreds of people from across North America and overseas. These guests aren’t going to sit idly by in their rooms twiddling their thumbs. They’re going to be out experiencing all that western Newfoundland has to offer. They’re going to be spending their hard-earned Euros in our malls, shops, ski hill and other tourist attractions. All this new money is great news for our economy. But how can these places attract customers from overseas you say?
Silly question, says I! I’ll admit to being puzzled by this at first as well. I knew it made more sense financially to come here than other European resorts, but cheaper isn’t always better. It’s been my experience that you usually get what you pay for. So why then would someone fly all the way over here for nothing? The answer came to me a few weeks ago while floating down the Humber River. That’s exactly what they come for … nothing! Europe and most of North America is such a fast paced, hustling and bustling place that there are few, if any, places left to just sit back and relax. That’s why they’re coming here in droves. They’re coming for the local flavour, the people, and to have nothing better to do than to float down a river watching the rest of the world drift by. Mark Morrissey, Steady Brook
JULY 17, 2005
8 • INDEPENDENTNEWS
JULY 17, 2005
INDEPENDENTNEWS • 9
he Independent interviewed former premier Frank Duff Moores in November, 2004 during the paper’s six-part cost/benefit analysis of Confederation and just weeks before Premier Danny Williams’ flag flap with Ottawa over the Atlantic Accord. Moores’ health was failing at that point, but he was more than eager to talk about his years as premier (1972-1979), as well as the province’s past and future. The following are excerpts from Moores’ interview with managing editor Ryan Cleary: FM: “The biggest cost to Newfoundland was the upper Churchill, by far. The upper Churchill is the equivalent of 150,000 barrels of oil a day. It was sold to Quebec for less than $3 a barrel.” Independent: If it wasn’t for that contract, would we be closer to being a have-province today? FM: “We wouldn’t be closer — we would be a have province.” Independent: Should the upper Churchill contract be revisited? FM: “When I was there one of the things we did — which was, I suppose, the best idea we had but it was the worst thing we ever did — was to buy Frank Moores it back. We bought Churchill Falls back from Brinco because we thought they could pressure the federal government to pressure Quebec into giving us (power line) access, on a straight line, from Churchill to New York or Ontario or wherever, because that was at the time when the pipeline was put through — the pipeline from Alberta to Halifax — and they run across every bloody province, just about, in the country. “And no one said boo. All we wanted was access across Quebec but it just didn’t work that way. I mean we couldn’t get it because there was 75 seats in Quebec and we had seven. That’s why it didn’t happen.” Independent: Do you have any advice on how the province can move forward? FM: “I couldn’t back Williams any more than … I think he’s absolutely right in what he’s trying to do. The mainland press are very bad on us because they don’t understand the history of Newfoundland like Churchill Falls. They don’t understand the history of Newfoundland like the pulp and paper companies, because all the money from the pulp and paper companies went to the UK. “I mean, don’t forget we were a colony for a long time and we were treated like one. All the
‘I’m a Newfoundlander first’ wealth was taken out and the resources were shipped out. That’s pretty much going on today. “The only thing that was Newfoundland was the fishery. The fishery had its tough times but at least it kept the place turning over — if nothing else … now with the fishery and a much highervalued fish, I think, Christ, when I was in the fishery you’d get 19 cents a pound delivered Boston. That’s delivered. And the Canadian dollar was $1.10 to the American dollar. So that was another 10 per cent off. So we were selling fish to the States for 18 cents. So Christ, as you know, if you take a codfish and you get one third of it is meat. If you pay a cent and a half a pound for it or two cents a pound that’s six cents before you even get it in the plant. And then you got the packaging and the overhead and the fright and all that crap. There was no money in the cod fishery for either the fishermen or for the merchants, believe it or not. “But today with the highvalued fish like shrimp and crab and this sort of thing the fishery today has much more people in it but there’s much more wealth in it as well.” Independent: Does the province’s future rest with the fishery? FM: “There’s a real future in it. I looked at Port de Grave when I was back down home and they’re the best fishermen in Newfoundland, by the way, I don’t care who hears me say it. They always had bigger longliners than anyone else. They always went further a field than anyone else. And, Jesus, I walked down and I talked to one of the kids I knew — the son of his dad used to land all his fish with me — and he just bought a $3-million boat. And I’m looking at a $3-million boat and that’s more than the fish plant cost. They’re doing well and they will always do well and there’s a future there but there’s a limitation to it. “The big future of Newfoundland is, first of all, the development of the resources for the benefit of the province and the second thing, which is probably more important, is to be able to take some of those resources and get some manufacturing industries into Newfoundland so stuff can be manufactured from the resources, because that’s where all the money is. “You take Voisey’s Bay — the smelter is one thing, we have to have it (the ore) refined — but it would be an awful lot better and we’d make an awful lot more money if we were shipping out pots and pans.” Independent: Do you shake your head when you hear of yet another provincial politician taking on Ottawa? FM: “No, I don’t, because this time he
The funeral for former Premier Frank Moores was held July 14 at Cochrane St. United Church in St. John's.
(Williams) has something to bargain with. Churchill Falls, when I was there, was a fait accompli, I mean it was done. In the case of the offshore oil and gas, it’s just beginning. It’s so misunderstood in the mainland press that you want equalization and your royalties form the oil and gas. They forget that Alberta doesn’t pay any royalties to Ottawa on oil and gas at all because they (Alberta) was almost bankrupt when they found oil and gas, they were exempt from any payments to Ottawa. “With the population of Newfoundland and with the resources we have we should be the
most have-province in Canada.” Independent: why aren’t we then? FM: “Because we’ve given it all away.” Independent: Do you think it’s too late for us then? Moores: “No I don’t. There’s lots of new stuff that’s going to be developed and that Churchill Falls thing will come to an end. The closer it gets to an end the closer Quebec is going to come to want to cut a deal.” Independent: Will it take more fighting with Ottawa? FM: “One thing about (Paul) Martin I’ll say is
YOUR VOICE Consumers deserve break on heating costs
In good company
Dear editor, The winter of 1999/2000, according to climatologists, was a once-in-100-year occurrence, At the time, a knee-jerk reaction of the Roger Grimes government was to bring in the new regulations regarding furnace oil storage tanks. Last week I had an estimate prepared by a local company to replace my oil tank and the necessary attachments. Today I received the written estimate — $1,413.60. Needless to say, I will be seeking other estimates. I feel that the new regulations are a licence to steal, granted to the oil suppliers. I wonder about people with less financial resources (fixed income and pensioners). I feel
Dear editor, Thank you very much to columnist Noreen Golfman for profiling The Leyton Gallery of Fine Art, along with the Emma Butler, Christina Parker and James Baird galleries. It is always reaffirming to know that the public feels we are doing a good job. I am so proud of the artists in The Leyton Gallery and honoured to be amongst them. As a side, my website was printed incorrectly — it is www.theleytongallery.com (one L left out of gallery). And I am delighted that you are now delivering out to Paradise. Again, thank you and Noreen Golfman. Bonnie Leyton, St. John’s
the regulations should be relaxed somewhat and the time for implementation extended.
This onerous cost of tank replacement, and the current high oil prices will make it very difficult for a great number of people to keep warm. Since the winter of 1999-2000, I have not heard of any oil spills related to home furnaces, to the extent they occurred during the aforementioned winter. I presume the Environment Department would have relative figures available.
This onerous cost of tank replacement, and the current high oil prices will make it very difficult for a great number of people to keep warm. Danny Williams should use a small portion of the Atlantic Accord money to remove the provincial portion of the HST from all heating costs. The money saved by the consumer would be spent in other areas, thus putting a portion of the HST back into government coffers. Instead of special interest groups benefiting from the Accord billions, all the people of the province would see some immediate benefit. Bill Sears, Seal Cove
Recycling begins at home Before visiting our depots, Ever Green reminds you to sort and separate all paper, and flatten cardboard. Also, wet or contaminated paper winds up as garbage. We’re open longer each day so there’s no need to leave materials outside our doors after hours or on Sundays. Let Ever Green’s staff help you, visit one of our depots today. Supported by the MMSB.
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that he believes in giving the provinces much more autonomy than anyone I’ve seen previously, and I think he’s going to give on this oil and gas thing. If not give totally he’ll give for 90 per cent of it. “As important as what Ottawa does is what Newfoundland does when they’re talking to industrialists. … the big thing in Newfoundland — and we can’t afford to do it yet at all — is to have private industry stoking the economy with the revenue coming to government from people who are making earnings in Newfoundland. And that gives us the wherewithal to do your hospi-
tals and your roads and this sort of stuff. “What happens in Newfoundland — Christ, we’re on the dole. Our way of life depends entirely on how much Ottawa is going to give us, which is not a healthy way.” Independent: There’s a certain mindset that the only way Newfoundland and Labrador can get by is with a handout. FM: “To answer that you have to go back to the resettlement program. It was 106 communities, I think, on the south cost closed down. And Mr. Smallwood said OK they all got to come ashore because it’s too expensive to get school-
teachers, it’s too expensive to get mail deliveries I’m admitting stuff now I never admitted when I and all that sort of stuff, which was primarily was in politics but it’s absolutely true.” true … Independent: There seems more hope now. “What happened was you took a population of FM: “For every good reason. There’s more people who were totally independent, they built reason for hope in Newfoundland today than their own homes, they had no mortgages, they there’s been anytime since — forget had a way of life which gave them their own livConfederation — since it was discovered for ing, they had had their own garden, they had that matter.” their own pig and cow and they were totally selfIndependent: What are your memories of sufficient and totally happy … but the fact that when Newfoundland joined Confederation? they all had to uproot and come in — some towFM: “I’m 71 so I remember a lot about it ing their houses and some not being able to, because John Crosbie and I went to school in most not being able to — they were taken and Toronto and the day Newfoundland joined whacked up in the bottom of Placentia Bay — Canada we had to stand up on the table and sing whether it be Arnold’s Cove or Southern O Canada and we stood up on the table and sang Harbour or wherever. the Ode to They were put in a Newfoundland. house, they were passed “My family were a mortgage, they were very protold that there was no Confederation. They jobs for them. were not pro-Mr. “So all of a sudden Smallwood because they couldn’t practice they thought the way their own living so they he went about any sat at home with a mortindustrialization develgage over their heads opment was total madwaiting for social assisness, which it was.” “But the biggest frustration was tance. Independent: Were the limitation on what you could “Now which was you prohealthier for those peoConfederation? do. People always wanted to hear ple — what they were FM: “Yes, I was.” taken from or what they But how things were going to be better youIndependent: were put into? sang the Ode to “Now the problem and it’s a very difficult thing to say Newfoundland? with that was that the FM: “You’re damn kids they had grew up right; I’m a when you can’t see yourself how under social assistance Newfoundlander first. and never knew anyI’m a Newfoundlander they’re going to get much better. thing else.” before I’m a Canadian. I’m admitting stuff now I never Independent: That “If that Churchill created a culture of Falls thing was a coradmitted when I was in politics. dependency? rect deal and if we FM: “Absolutely and were being treated the But it’s absolutely true.” totally. That group of way we are now, I Newfoundlanders, that would say Frank Moores set them back 100 Newfoundland’s attiyears.” tude towards separaIndependent: Was resettlement our biggest tion would be stronger than Quebec’s. mistake? “I feel that if Newfoundland had gotten a fair FM: “Absolutely. Not only was it the biggest break on its resources and (given) the frustramistake, it was the cruelest thing we ever did.” tions we’ve had with — particularly Ottawa, but Independent: What was your biggest frustraalso almost equally Quebec — if … we had a tion as premier? Finances? chance of being self-sufficient, I’d say separaFM: “Not knowing what to do about it; you tion would be an easier thing to pull off in were stuck. There was never enough money to Newfoundland than in Quebec. do what had to be done and there was never any“It doesn’t take much to get a thing on the horizon that would show it to us. Newfoundlander’s independence up. We are Churchill Falls was one — in hindsight that was independent. I don’t think we’re ready for it yet, more wishful thinking than good economic but I sure as hell wouldn’t put it on the backjudgment. There was no Voisey’s Bay, there was burner either. no offshore oil — although the offshore oil and Jesus Christ, here I am living in Ontario. I gas had been discovered when I got out. may not be allowed outside the gate if that gets “But the biggest frustration was the limitation published.” on what you could do. People always wanted to Frank Moores died of cancer July 10 at a hoshear how things were going to be better and it’s pital in Perth, Ont., at the age of 72. A funeral a very difficult thing to say when you can’t see mass was held July 14 at Cochrane Street yourself how they’re going to get much better. United Church in St. John’s.
YOUR VOICE Salmon conservation everyone’s responsibility Dear Editor, The management of the salmon stocks in insular Newfoundland and Labrador is the sole responsibility of the federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO). The management of the salmon habitat is the responsibility of the people and the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador. Salmonids and their habitat comprise a single unit that cannot be separated for management purposes. Salmon have been an important part of Newfoundland and Labrador culture for hundreds of years, but wild Atlantic salmon are now at an all-time low in most rivers. It is apparent that management strategies put in place — including the closing of the commercial fishery and reducing bag limits in the recreational fishery — were not successful in restoring salmon popu-
lations. The resource belongs to the people and communities of Newfoundland and Labrador so therefore it is imperative that we step forward to insure that the salmon resource is managed in a sustainable fashion. As salmon is a community resource, we as a people must take some responsibility for its recovery. It is our initiative to insure the habitat remains clean, free of pollutants and suitable for salmon reproduction. Working with DFO and the provincial government we must show that we value our resource by providing information and assistance in combating one of the most devastating effects on our stocks. Poaching is a very serious problem — it is stealing from a resource that belongs to the people. But we have the power through communication to help eradicate the problem.
As a provincial government we have to continue to use our resources to help fight the negative effect of human activity. Most importantly, we must redefine our forest-management practices around rivers and watersheds. Forest management practices cause numerous short- and long-term negative impacts to Atlantic salmon, including siltation, shade reduction and increased water temperature. Government regulations are inadequate for protecting or restoring salmon habitat. The regulations fail to require retention of large wood, have adequate Crown closure (no cutting zones) or to protect headwater streams. It requires reserved uncut areas — not just thin ribbons around rivers, but substantial areas in headwater areas as well. The federal government is first and foremost responsible for policy develop-
ment and management of the wild Atlantic salmon — including funding for research, monitoring and enforcement of salmon regulations to conserve and protect the Atlantic salmon through out its entire range.
As salmon is a community resource, we as a people must take some responsibility for its recovery. It is my opinion that the federal government’s level of funding to DFO is not adequate for the department to effectively patrol our vast coastline and 168 salmon rivers. Some of DFO’s resources are directed toward co-operation among levels of
government and the private sector with respect to management of the Atlantic salmon resource. It should continue to be funded with emphasis on public education and awareness to help expose and mitigate the devastating effect of poaching. It is the people in the communities that are nearest the resource that have the greatest impact whether it is positive or negative. Some say that DFO is only downloading its responsibility to the community level. In my opinion, this is our opportunity to have some real input into the management of our salmon stocks. It gives us, the people, the opportunity to work with the other two levels or government to ensure that the salmon are managed as if they really mattered. John Kelly, Co-chair, Ragged Harbour River salmon conservation working group, Gander
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JULY 17, 2005
10 • INDEPENDENTNEWS
‘Through the back door’ Foreign-trained dentists sidestep Canadian qualification criteria By Clare-Marie Gosse The Independent
Carrie Fisher and Meg Ryan wave to fans and photographers in St. John's. The pair visited the Newman Wine Vaults on Water Street while on vacation. Paul Daly/The Independent
n estimated 10 of the 170 dentists practicing in Newfoundland and Labrador today are doing so without official Canadian qualifications, The Independent has learned. A number of foreign-trained dentists, with bachelor degrees in their fields, were granted special provisional licences several years ago, which permitted them to work in certain rural, under-serviced areas only. In 2001, the foreign-trained dentists filed a human rights complaint against the Newfoundland and Labrador Dental Board because they felt they should be issued full general licences, enabling them to work anywhere in Canada. All dentists wanting to practice in Canada must pass a national exam to attain a general license and, by doing so, automatically earn the title of doctor. In many overseas countries, such as the U.K., training consists of an undergraduate bachelor degree. Graduates are technically Mr. or Mrs. — although “doctor” is sometimes used as an honourary title, depending on personal preference. The foreign-trained dentists working in the province with provisional licences won their case against the board and were issued general licences without taking the national exam. The board has since appealed, and
Paul O’Brien, registrar of the Newfoundland and Labrador Dental Board, says a court decision is expected by year’s end. Although he says he has no personal issues with the dentists operating as “doctors,” he does think they should have to follow the same rules as everyone else. “The certification process is an examination individually — for the individual to go through those programs that have been accredited. And that’s what we’re trying to adhere to and that’s what the rest of Canada adheres to and it behooves us, I think, to try to make the same standard.” O’Brien says the board’s main concern with issuing general licenses to the dentists who took their case to human rights was that other foreigntrained dentists would push for the same treatment. “They asked us to just upgrade their licence to full licensure, based on the agreement of internal trade (and mobility), the principles of that agreement, and we said, well no, we wouldn’t do that unless we saw that that type of licensure was going to be eliminated completely.” O’Brien would like to see the government practice of issuing provisional licences to foreign-trained workers, in order to populate under-serviced areas, changed to the one general system of licencing. Other occupations are also affected by the two-tier method, such as carpenters, social workers and physi-
cians. A local dentist born and raised in St. John’s, who asked not to be named, says the reason the provisionally licenced dentists chose not to take the national exam is because it’s “very, very hard to do the course.” They wanted to qualify under experience alone. “Taking the exam is very hard. General practicing of dentistry, I did things 20 years ago when I was in dental school that I’m sure I do not remember right now. It doesn’t have anything to do with my day to day basis.” The general length of study to obtain a bachelor of dentistry in the UK is five years — in Canada it takes at least seven years to fully qualify. The St. John’s dentist says the fact that some local dentists are calling themselves doctors without following the same procedures as their colleagues could be considered unfair. “We’ve already had some of these people who came here and got their licence, move right away. So that’s a big concern as well. They got in here and they got through the back door for a particular reason,” he says. “If you want to go and practice dentistry in Canada then you should follow the rules like everyone else and not try and get through the back door.” Non-European Union residents wishing to practice dentistry in the U.K. are required to take an International Qualifying Examination.
Summertime and livin’ easy By Alisha Morrissey The Independent
he heat of summer 2005 isn’t quite the same as the heat of summer 1887. The daily temperature in highs and lows were once printed in The Colonist, a St. John’s-based newspaper. The hottest day in the month of July, 1887 was the 15th when, according to The Colonist, the day’s high was a room-temperature 72 degrees and the low dipped to 48 degrees. The July 2, 1914 edition of the Mail and Advocate, also out of St. John’s, printed the unusual (until you read on) headline “Golden days” above a story about how rain, drizzle and fog was the preferred weather. “The last two days being drizzly and foggy with east-coast wind, is just what the colony is most in need of, for this is the weather that brings codfish to the shore,” the story read. There was reportedly a poor cod fishery that year; the summer of 1914 was also described as having the “worst lobster fishery ever.” The rain was welcome for farmers whose crops had been dry for too long and solved the problem of interior brush fires fuelled by the summer heat. The July 3, 1914 edition of the Mail
Sunday Express, Aug. 2, 1987
and Advocate included a report of iceberg sightings — another popular summertime story. “The steamship Jacona from Hull arrived today, the first steamer through the Straits of Belle Isle this season. She passed 12 icebergs in the Straits,” the report read. Backtracking a month, the June 12, 1914 edition of the Mail and Advocate included ads for lightweight clothing and straw and felt hats — “What a well dressed man needs as a finish to his appearance.” There were also movie ads for the Nickel Theatre in the same edition, claiming it was always “cool, clean and cozy” there.
Advertisements and letters to the editor began running in The Colonist in the weeks of July 1887 about the annual fruit and flower show. The show offered credible judges and fantastic prizes. While flower shows were commonly advertised in the pages of summertime editions of the era, the event’s location was never printed. There weren’t many tourism stories in The Colonist — the kind of articles found in today’s papers. “How London was overrun by thousands of sightseers,” was one headline in the July 6, 1887 edition. It seems the big tourist attraction was a parade with the whole royal family. By 1987, tourism had been picked up by newspapers as a common summertime story. The July 12, 1987 edition of the Sunday Express published the headline “Ferries cost make Newfoundland unattractive, says tour operator.” The tour operator said transport trucks took priority over passengers and complained tourists weren’t fond of the rates. Another tourism-related story, printed in the Aug. 16, 1987 edition, was about tourism development projects being contracted to companies outside the province. The province’s consultants defended the idea, saying it would draw more people than if a local company had been hired. In the same edition there were also typical summer articles about dangerous summer sports and how to avoid injuries. “Grown-up machines used by kids,” read the headline of one story about children riding adult ATVs. The story went on to cite the RCMP, Janeway doctors and ATV dealers on injuries they had seen. Another summer safety story was printed in the Aug. 16 edition about summer drownings and how to avoid them. The Sunday Express was full of common summer themes and the July 12, 1987 edition was no exception, including a photo of a man doing some fancy, Frisbee tricks in Bowring Park and an ad for Blue Star beer showing a typical summer scene with four men on a deck, one with a guitar, another with a harmonica and a third handing out bottles of beer.
SUNDAY THROUGH SATURDAY, JULY 17-23, 2005 — PAGE 11
A message of zero tolerance Ottawa must candidly tell newcomers to Canada to leave behind their squabbles when they land on our shores
Observing a two-minute silence in London's Parliament Square.
By James Travers Torstar wire service
s they sift through the rubble and clues of the London transit bombings, investigators are identifying more than enough to make Canadians worry. What’s being found over there can be found over here and is just as dangerous. Not only are the critical elements of a horrible crime common to both countries, the evidence now being gathered so efficiently in Britain points to what must be seen in Canada as a worst-case scenario. Homegrown suicide bombers working in small, operationally secure groups present a threat that is almost impossible to stop. Security officials were hoping for better. It would have been much easier to understand an attack planned and executed by previously identified outsiders who somehow slipped through the counterterrorism net to hit and run. Instead, countries targeted by al Qaeda — and Canada is one — now must deal with more chilling realities. Along with lying deep within multicultural societies that cherish their freedoms and accept their differences, this internal danger is
more difficult to defend and to measure. this is a clash of cultures better fought far Think of the London attacks as an out- away than close to home, it becomes more break of a disease that doctors knew was- apparent daily that al Qaeda’s growing n’t controlled but was diagnosed as con- popularity comes from combating foreign tained to a few extremities. Now no one armies and influence on eastern soil, and knows how far it has travelled or where it that it has no trouble finding recruits ready will surface next. to die delivering that message in western What is known is that the conditions cities. necessary for the virus to The implications thrive are present here: an are profound. early commitment to overThey span issues as But 9/11, SARS and throwing the Taliban and broad and distant as its al Qaeda allies contineven the great power support for countries ues with the deployment of struggling toward blackout have made troops in Kandahar, democracy and as Afghanistan’s hottest spot, narrow and close to Canada much more Canadians are understandhome as extending ably queasy about tough use of cellphones, a security measures, includ- ready than it was just a favoured detonator, ing the long-term detention to Toronto subways. few years ago. of terror suspects, and Together they ask a some subcultures have a troubling question: history of sheltering extremists. when it comes to counterterrorism, is a Together they produce a gloomy prog- country naively comfortable with the nosis. An attack here is climbing fast from notion that the world loves Canada ready probable toward inevitable. to cope with those who violently disSome of that growing certainty comes agree? from the core nature of a conflict that to In our moderate way, the answer lies many is still obscure. somewhere in the middle. While the Bush administration argues Insulated from Europe’s mad bombers
and bolstered by the misguided belief that horrible things don’t happen here, Canada isn’t as well-prepared for terrorism as Britain or as it should be. But 9/11, SARS and even the great power blackout have made it much more ready than it was just a few years ago. As Deputy Prime Minister Anne McLellan explained recently in a Toronto speech, Ottawa has learned from previous mistakes. Police and security now report to one minister, continental defence is better integrated and the federal government’s emergency preparedness, exposed by earlier crises as woefully wanting, is now more robust. Still, there is more to do. Paul Martin’s government needs to be candid about the risks at home of being a bolder player in the dangerous game abroad and it must send a zero-tolerance message to those who bring to a new country the troubles that make it so attractive to leave an old one. This isn’t racism or cultural insensitivity. It is a categorical rejection of bombs, guns and hatreds as legitimate expressions of political will. If that wasn’t clear before the London bombings, it’s obvious now.
A sorry state of health care Martin’s against a two-tier system, but we already have a multi-tier one
ith the Supreme Court of Canada concluding that where the government is failing to deliver health care in a reasonable manner, thereby increasing the risk of complications and death, this interferes with Charter guarantees to life and security of the person, we Canadians are given an opportunity. Prime Minister Paul Martin, of course, has done little except offer his politically self-serving, silly and fatuous comment: “We’re not going to have a two-tier health system in this country. Nobody wants that.” He apparently believes this inane
The old curmudgeon statement is so politically attractive it cannot be challenged. He is wrong. How can Martin continue to put forward such flapdoodle in light of the known facts? Health care spending as a percentage of GNP is 14.6 per cent in the U.S., 10.9 per cent in Germany, 9.7 per cent in France and 9.6 per cent in Canada. Yet, out of 23 advanced coun-
tries, Canada ranks 16th in the number of physicians per 1,000 population, with just 2.1 for every 1,000 Canadians. Canadians’ access to hi-tech tools to diagnose disease or to spare patients from invasive surgery, is among the worst in the developed world — we have fewer MRI machines per capita than Australia, Germany and Italy, with Sweden having twice as many as we do. We rank below such nations as the Czech Republic, Portugal and Spain in access to CT technology. Overall, Canada ranks 15th out of 24 advanced countries in access to MRIs;
17th out of 23 in access to CT scanners and 8th out of 22 in access to radiation machines. In the developed world, we rank 16th in the rate of infant mortality and 14th in life expectancy. In the world’s 30 most developed countries, 28 (including Canada) dictate the right to health care regardless of ability to pay. Of those, we tie with Iceland as the highest spender on health care when adjusted for age — but rank near the bottom in access to technology and physicians. Canadian patients wait longer than patients in most of these countries. How can Martin pretend such self-
satisfaction in the light of these facts? He bleats continually that we are not going to have a two-tier health system when we already have a multi-tier health system. At present it is the poor and inarticulate who receive the worst care, because they cannot circumvent the system the way those better off can and do. Why do we have such a dearth of technology, shortage of physicians and such long waits for care? Experts, such as Dr. David Gratzer, point out this is the result of Medicare’s command and See “State monopoly,” page 12
JULY 17, 2005
12 • INDEPENDENTWORLD
Exasperated mayor wants VOICE FROM AWAY ‘branding’ project revamped By Royson James Torstar wire service
ayor David Miller says huge ads selling Toronto to potential tourists in New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, Washington and abroad are “an embarrassment and indefensible.” He says he wants the $4 million campaign reworked and revamped to tell the city’s story in a more compelling way that does Toronto proud. For the second weekend, the multipage ads running in the travel section of The New York Times elicited widespread criticism and the mayor says he has had enough. “It’s the second set of ads that are indefensible,” an exasperated Miller says. “It’s time to do a complete rethink of how we do tourism promotion in our city.” The agency spent 13 months, did 4,500 surveys and 230 in-depth interviews to find out what Americans wanted from a Toronto tourism package. Then they came up with a kick-off ad full of grammatical errors, poor syntax, and inane statements: “Toronto is nearly indefinable, nearly infinite in its possibilities for the traveller, and nearly impossible to forget once you’ve been there. And perhaps what makes this place so original, so individual and somehow majestic is that it is a product of natural occurrences.” Miller’s office was bombarded with calls of complaints. Media pundits panned it. And while the second ad dropped the offending essay, it also drew strong criticism. About half the events promoted in
the ad were finished or about to end on the day the newspaper hit the streets. Elizabeth Gill, project leader of the Toronto Branding project, says that wasn’t a mistake. Tourism Toronto wanted Americans to get a sense of the wide scope and volume of events happening in Toronto on a given weekend, even if they had missed the event. And theatre impresario David Mirvish says he buys the explanation. The first ad “had problems,” the second missed the mark, but the third one, which ran last weekend, was a winner, he said. “I know because I got calls from New York.” Tourism Toronto is an arm’s-length body charged with promoting the Toronto region. For more than a decade the agency complained budget restraints hampered its ability to sell Toronto and pointed to cities like Chicago and New York and San Francisco that were out-spending Toronto by huge margins. With close to $10 million at Tourism Toronto’s disposal, city council cut back its subsidy to about $500,000 this year. And with that, city politicians say their views and influence over the agency has waned. Miller says Tourism Toronto has to listen more to city hall. “We have a fascinating story to tell and I’ll be doing everything in my power to see that they tell it effectively,” Miller says. “We’ll be pushing as hard as we can to alter the way they are using the Toronto brand name.” The branding exercise, plus the creation and purchase of ads, cost $4 million, all of it from tourist association members and the levy on hotel users.
A different world: Bailey D. Buffalo (left) receives his fifth birthday cake from Alberta Premier Ralph Klein in Edmonton earlier this year. Dan Riedlhuber/Reuters
‘There’s no water’
Triton-native Waylon Jennings on the ups and downs of living in Edmonton By Stephanie Porter The Independent
aylon Jennings says his move to Edmonton has presented him with plenty of business opportunity — and brought him face-toface with a surprising amount of ignorance. “I should be grateful that I’m here and I’m doing well, it’s fantastic,” he says. “But I’ve had so many run-ins with people here about the fact that I’m from Newfoundland and all the rest of it that it’s upset me to the extent I want people to know exactly what it’s like here. “It’s not all roses and friends and great jobs.” Jennings, from Triton, Notre Dame Bay, moved to Alberta three years ago. He left a “good job” selling industrial supplies for a Springdale-based company when his fiancée was offered a position out West. “So we decided, what the hell, let’s try (it),” he says. Jennings arrived in his new hometown with no firm plans. Before long, he got a job selling cars, which he did for two years. Then he left, and began his own photography business — Stagehead Images. Jennings has been an amateur photographer for about eight years. When he moved to Edmonton, he enrolled in night classes to further his skills behind the lens. Starting the business was “something I wanted to do for a long time and I figured this would be a good place to give it a try,” he says. He shoots corporate dinners and events and does portraits of families, graduates and senior citizens — which he loves. “They pay and you don’t have to chase them for money,” he says with a laugh. Eight months into the job, he says he hasn’t yet made his fortune — but it’s building, month over month. “I’m still building a client base,” he says. “I do love it … grads and all that is not what I would love to be doing but I realize that’s how 90 per cent of photographers pay their bills and I’m going to have to do that to get going.” While Jennings does landscape photography — and has travelled the mountains, parks and badlands of the province doing so — what gets him “going is people, just doing everyday stuff.” He says he’ll continue to try to
find a balance between his creative and financial needs. As a place to try out this kind of business, Jennings says, “Edmonton is a good place to start, get my feet wet, see if this is something I can make a good living at. There’s lots of population here.” But as a province to call home, Jennings says Alberta is lacking. “I find the people certainly have a different kind of attitude, particularly towards the east coast and people from the east coast,” he says. “There’s a lot of great people here but there’s a few really arrogant people here too. “It’s probably not a very nice statement to make, but the people here, generally, can be found in three categories:
“Mary Brown’s came here last year … we could hear the conversations of all the people that were in the restaurant sitting down, and I’m not kidding you, they were all Newfoundlanders.” a) they like Newfoundland or East Coast people … because they’re funny. “Or b) (they don’t think) Newfoundland really exists, ‘I thought it was just in a story book or something,’ or c) they look down their noses because we’re taking all their money and that kind of thing. “It upsets me a lot, I’ve got to be honest with you, it drives me insane.” Jennings says the local newspapers have regular letters looking down at Easterners — though, as he points out, many times “East” means Ontario. When Danny Williams ordered the Canadian flags down last December — a move Jennings applauded — he says he was constantly being forced to defend his province. Jennings has plenty of examples of face-to-face encounters that have left him seething. One time in particular, he was in a scrapbook store, and ran into a veteran from the Second World War. The man criticized the New-
foundlanders he fought beside for being unskilled with their weapons and unused to even dealing with money. And he pointed a finger at all Newfoundlanders today for having one of two jobs: “welfare and unemployment. “I don’t know what kind of personal issues he had with Newfoundlanders … but the arrogant way he was going on about it, he was getting a rise out of me, no doubt about that,” Jennings says. “At that point I realized I’m going to have to get my guard up a bit with people here or at least become really educated on my own situation, my own culture and make sure that if the situation ever arises again I can keep a cool head and debate.” Jennings says he’s optimistic for change, but after 56 years of Newfoundland and Labrador being part of Canada, he’s not sure what it will take to educate the provinces about one another. Jennings says he and his fiancée plan to move back to the East Coast, but probably not for another five or six years. He’s run into plenty of Newfoundlanders in Edmonton. “If you want to see fellow Newfoundlanders, there are plenty of places you can go to — Mary Brown’s being the main one. “It’s amazing you know, Mary Brown’s came here last year … when we walked in we could hear the conversations of all the people that were in the restaurant sitting down, and I’m not kidding you, they were all Newfoundlanders.” Jennings has a few parting words for Newfoundlanders and Labradorians who are thinking about moving to Alberta, as thousands have before them. “It’s great, but really, really think it over. It’s not home and there’s going to be a huge adjustment. “You lose touch with all the people and places that are important to you. And you know what’s really weird? There’s no water! It’s insane. I grew up in a place where the salt spray was hitting my windows. “(Moving is) something you really have to think over a lot because it’s not going to be easy.” Do you know a Newfoundlander or Labradorian living away? Please email email@example.com.
State monopoly as sacred cow Continued from page 11 control structure. For 30 years, politicians like Martin attempted to micro-manage Canadian health care. An example is the restrictions put in place some years ago with respect to the supply of doctors, centralizing decision-making and putting in place a myriad of rules and regulations. Liberal governments have poured more and more money into this flawed system. In 2004, Martin offered more of the same by promising $41 billion over the next 10 years. The main prob-
lem is not money but proper policy and organization. If the leadership of Paul “fixed for a generation” Martin continues, all we can be assured of is continuing failure and futility for the harassed ill of Canada for another generation. Canadian Medicare, even when working well, has never provided real equality of access, nor have Canadians ever had a single-tier system. The resources have to be rationed — you wait, you travel elsewhere or you accept second best. Historian Michael Bliss asked the question all Canadians should: what
other countries are adopting the Canadian health care model? None! Canada is the only country that treats a state monopoly of health insurance as though it were a sacred cow, making us a laggard, not a leader in providing health care services. The time is now to discuss how we can create an efficient and effective health system without woeful waiting times — and to ignore Liberal bluff and deception about a one-tier system we’ve never had and never will. John Crosbie’s column will return July 31.
JULY 17, 2005
INDEPENDENTWORLD • 13
‘Pain in the butt’
Canada’s minister for Indian and Northern Affairs finally speaks up about his recent ailment By Kathy Kaufield Telegraph-Journal
ndy Scott limps to his living room couch, gingerly lowers himself onto its comfy seat and winces slightly as his bottom touches the cushion. Then he positions his leg so one side of his body is slightly raised. “I don’t usually sit like this,” he says with a smile. But the Fredericton MP is just happy to be sitting at all these days after spending much of the past five weeks lying in bed in excruciating pain from an intensely personal medical condition that may force him to change the way he functions as Canada’s Minister for Indian and Northern Affairs. Scott, 50, has been at a bit of a loss to explain his ailment, because, quite frankly, it’s rather embarrassing. Up until now, he’s said publicly only that he had day surgery to heal a bacterial infection. He also ruled out rumours of a severe case of hemorrhoids. However, because his recovery is taking so long and because it’s affecting his capacity in a public role, Scott says he feels his constituents deserve an explanation. So here goes. Scott had an abscess the size of his fist removed from his buttocks on June 3, a condition that may have been caused by taking too many bumpy rides in small planes to northern native communities. “It’s a hard one to talk about,” Scott says. “It was very, very painful … Excruciating is the only word I can come up with. It was very, very sore because there isn’t any relief.” Doctors haven’t determined what caused Scott’s condition, which is also commonly referred to as a boil and can be caused by “trauma” such as sitting in confined spaces and enduring bumpy landings in small planes, something Scott has done weekly since being named Indian Affairs minister. Scott says he first started feeling a pain in his buttocks in mid-May but says he just ignored it because he was focused on attending a national cabinet retreat with First Nations leaders at the end of May. After the event, he finally decided to go to a clinic when he noticed a small abscess starting to protrude from his buttocks. The doctor asked him if he had been bitten by a spider, which he hadn’t, and prescribed penicillin. Two days later, the abscess had grown to the size of his fist and was spreading down his leg. At the urging of his wife Denise, Scott headed to the Ottawa Civic Hospital. “At that point, I was terribly afraid. There was a
Fredericton MP Andy Scott has started slowly to return to work after surgery.
big lump. But also in a great deal of pain,” he says. Within an hour of arriving at the hospital, Scott was whisked away to have emergency surgery to remove the abscess, which if it had ruptured, could have had serious health consequences. Scott was able to return to his Ottawa apartment that same day but he says the surgery left a rather
large and painful wound that required the assistance of a homecare nurse to change the dressing twice per day. “It was swollen and very red. It was very unpleasant,” he says. Just four days after the surgery, despite the fact that he hadn’t even been able to get out of bed
except to be assisted to the bathroom, Scott made it to Parliament for a confidence vote by using a wheelchair and relying on pain medication. He received special permission to sit in the wheelchair in front of his seat in the House of Commons and to nod instead of standing up for the vote. “We had two votes to spare. I can remember at some point as I was feeling pretty bad thinking, ‘Is three votes that much better than two?’“ During the final days of the House, he fought through his pain to return to the House to vote on several matters, including the government’s samesex legislation and several budget amendments. As challenging as it was to deal with the pain, Scott says he was even more frustrated by his sudden inability to work. “It was just more of a shock to my personal system to be out of things,” he says. “It has been very difficult for me personally because not only do I like to work, I like to be around people. I like to feel engaged and so to be isolated in the way that I was isolated, it would be like my worst nightmare.” He says the pain made it hard to read his files and the location of his wound made it even unpleasant to watch television, although at one point his wife set up a mirror so he lie comfortably while watching the tube. Meanwhile, in the midst of all this, Scott, 36, discovered she was pregnant. It was a long-awaited and joyous bit of news for the couple but at the same time, she has struggled to care for her husband and deal with the nausea and exhaustion that comes with pregnancy. “He had to get something to take the focus off me,” Scott says with a laugh. Scott says he will undergo some tests this month to determine the cause of the abscess but he’s optimistic there isn’t a more serious cause other than frequent flying. He says if his doctors determine flying is the cause, he may have to avoid small planes, even if that means asking native leaders to meet with him in Yellowknife where larger commercial jets can land rather than him travelling to their communities in six-seater aircrafts. He says doctors have warned he may never be able to ride a bike again either. Last week, he began working a couple of hours per day from his home and he hopes to resume his normal schedule in about two weeks. He admits his friends have subjected him to a little good-natured ribbing about his condition. “There have been some references to a ‘pain in the ass’ and that kind of stuff. You get a lot of that,” he says, adding that he’s sure he will become the “butt” of lots of jokes at the annual press gallery dinner in Ottawa this year.
U.S. opens border to cattle Court rejects argument on spread of mad cow disease VANCOUVER By Daniel Girard Torstar wire service
An Alberta beef cow.
he United States reopened its border to live Canadian cattle late last week after a federal appeals court overturned an earlier ruling that said such a move could spread mad cow disease. Nearly 26 months after the discovery of a single Alberta cow with bovine spongiform encephalopathy, or BSE, as mad cow is formally known, set off a crisis that has cost the Canadian cattle industry about $7 billion, ranchers seemed stunned by developments. “That’s just excellent news,” says Arno Doerksen, a rancher near Gem, Alta., about the announcement by U.S. Agriculture Secretary Michael Johanns. “It’s an indication that we may be finally moving ahead and that’s just great.” Johanns says American officials have already been in touch with the Canadian Food Inspection Agency to prepare to certify cattle for shipment. “Because the (court) ruling is effective immediately, we are immediately taking steps to resume the importation of cattle under 30 months of age from Canada.” But after so many false starts and lastminute roadblocks in the quest to get the U.S. border reopened to live Canadian cattle under 30 months of age, ranchers were
reluctant to declare the crisis over or assume animals would be headed south sometime today. “We know that we’ve passed one legal barrier in the U.S. to the re-establishment of trade,” Ted Haney, president of the Canada Beef Export Federation, says. “What we don’t know is how many more barriers are ahead of us — none, one, or a few … But this is clearly a very positive development.” Manitoba Agriculture Minister Rosanne Wowchuk echoes that caution, noting there are likely still some details that have to be worked out. “I don’t expect the trucks will start to roll tomorrow,” she says. “But this is very good news for Canadian producers.” “We are not out of the woods completely on the legal front but we feel this is a strong message from the Court of Appeal to the court in Montana,” says Stan Eby, president of the Canadian Cattlemen’s Association, adding the group is “very pleased and very excited.” “This is wonderful news that has been long awaited,” says Eby. Late yesterday, a three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals overturned a ruling by a Montana judge earlier this year, which prevented American officials from reopening the border to live Canadian cattle as they had planned to do last spring.
“It’s about time,” says Blair Vold, who runs one of Canada’s largest auction houses in Ponoka, Alta. “It definitely shows that we were right all along and science should overrule politics.” A powerful American rancher lobby, RCALF United Stockgrowers of America, had successfully argued in Montana earlier this year that reopening the border to live Canadian cattle would risk spreading the disease throughout the U.S. The decision last week was on a U.S. Department of Agriculture appeal of that ruling. R-CALF, which is set to appear in a Montana court on July 27 to seek a permanent ban to the importation of Canadian cattle, says it’s disappointed by the ruling but could take no action until it had seen the court’s reasons for its ruling. At last week’s appeal hearing, R-CALF argued that dropping a ban on cattle “would subject the entire U.S. beef industry to potentially catastrophic damages.” The group also argued that Canadian imports present a “genuine risk of death for U.S. consumers” and the U.S. Agriculture Department erred in trying to reopen the border. Canadian ranchers estimate they’ve lost $7 billion Cdn in the trade tangle, while U.S. meatpackers are going out of business and have lost some 8,000 jobs without a steady supply of cows. C-CLASS STARTING FROM
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JULY 17, 2005
14 • INDEPENDENTWORLD
21 days in jail for fish poacher By Scott Roberts Torstar wire service
21-day jail sentence levied against an Aurora man for poaching fish was unusually stiff, conservation officials say. In addition to the jail time, Sergei Homiakov was slapped with an $8,500 fine and had his fishing licence suspended for five years after pleading guilty last month to over-fishing, fishing during a closed time and unlawfully transporting fish. Homiakov, 30, was released Friday after serving 12 days in Lindsay’s Central East Correctional Centre. The sentence was handed down by Justice of the Peace Robert Boychyn and relates to a Feb. 14 incident, when
Durham police found Homiakov with bags containing 23 rainbow trout at Wilmot Creek in Clarington at about 1:30 a.m. Ministry conservation officers were called and seized the catch, which contained 15 female and eight male trout. “Jail time is certainly rare in these cases,” says Bill Lafferty, natural resources ministry enforcement supervisor for the Aurora district. “I’ve seen fines that high but ... I have not seen the additional jail time.” Boychyn’s decision was well within his legal means, ministry officials say. Under the Federal Fisheries Act, jail time of up to one year and fines topping $100,000 can be issued. But Crown prosecutor Veronica McGuire was not seeking the maxi-
mum penalty. In fact, she was not asking that Homiakov be jailed at all. She only sought an $8,500 fine and the forfeiture of equipment involved in the
“They acted like he killed a person, not a fish.” Irina Homiakov capture and the fish. “The judge basically ordered the fine and further sentenced Mr. Homiakov to 21 days in jail,” says Brendan Crawley, an attorney-general’s office
spokesman. Homiakov, who immigrated to Canada from Belarus five years ago, could not comment because he does not speak English. But his wife, Irina Homiakov, lashed out at the justice system for jailing her husband. “They acted like he killed a person, not a fish,” she said, insisting her husband did not know the provincial regulations. “I was shocked. I wasn’t expecting them to put him in jail. I don’t know how they can do that.” Homiakov, who has no previous convictions, represented himself in court and pleaded guilty because he could not afford a lawyer, his wife says. “I understand now that he was wrong to fish then. But to leave a wife without a husband and a child without a father
is wrong, too,” says Irina Homiakov. Mitch Phinney, the conservation officer who handled the case, could not recall the last time he has seen jail time allotted for such an offence. “The sentence was hefty. It’s rare.” The conviction was likely tougher because it was spawning season for rainbow trout, says Phinney. The 15 female trout captured would have represented about 80,000 lost eggs, which would have directly reduced the population. Boychyn could not be reached for comment. Although poaching incidents have decreased since the late 1980s, Lafferty says the sentence would “send a strong message” to anyone thinking of illegally catching fish.
Go after ‘scumbags’: Hillier OTTAWA By Bruce Campion-Smith Torstar wire service
anada must take its fight against “detestable murderers and scumbags” to the failed states abroad where they are allowed to “spread their venom,” the country’s top general says. Comparing the situation to that of the fight against Nazi Germany, a toughtalking Gen. Rick Hillier says the attacks against the London transit system just over a week ago underscore the need for Canada’s military to take an active role in places like Afghanistan. “I think the London attack just tells us once more we can’t let up,” Hillier says. He says Canada must be ready to battle “those who would help terrorists and murderers and killers like al Qaeda ... and the Taliban who would help them regain power.” Without taking action, Canada risks having that instability “come home to roost” here, says Hillier, the chief of defence staff. Hillier makes his comments just as the military gets set to take on a more dangerous role in Afghanistan. In just over a week, some 250 Edmontonbased troops will depart for Kandahar as part of a reconstruction team meant to help stabilize the southern part of the country. By February, there will be 1,500 Canadian soldiers in Kandahar. One of their dangerous missions is chasing down Taliban extremists. “We’re actually going there to take down the folks who are trying to still blow up men and women in Afghanistan and still provide a base for an organization like al Qaeda to grow its venom,” Hillier says. BRACE FOR FATALITIES But the general warned yesterday that people should brace for injuries, perhaps even fatalities, among Canada’s military and suggested that the public might be in the dark about the looming dangers of this new role. “The possibilities of taking casualties are always there ... I do think there needs to be an awareness across Canada that we’re in a dangerous business,” Hillier says. And he added a plug for his troops, saying citizens need to voice their support for men and women in uniform. Asked if Canada’s greater visibility in Afghanistan could prompt terror attacks here, Hillier likened the atmosphere today to the mood in 1939 when Canadians were called on to fight Nazi Germany. “Did they say ‘No, because we might be attacked over here if we actually go and stand up against those despicable murderous bastards’?” Hillier asks. “They went and did it because it was right. I think it’s exactly the same thing now. We need to take a stand.” He says Canada — a member of the G-8, a flourishing Western nation — is already on the terror hit list and terrorists are out to “break our society.” “We’re not going to let those radical murderers and killers rob from others and we’re certainly not going to let them rob from Canada,” says Hillier, who spares few adjectives in describing the terrorists. Hillier revealed that within hours after the bombs exploded in London, Canada’s military moved to ensure it was ready to cope with any incident. That included checking the readiness of the secretive commando team, known as JTF2, and its beefed up chemical-biological response squad. As well, the military ensured that fighter jets were ready to scramble and it stepped up vigilance of maritime traffic off both coasts.
JULY 17, 2005
INDEPENDENTWORLD • 15
Spook hunters coming to art gallery FREDERICTON Marty Klinkenberg Telegraph-Journal
group of paranormal investigators from Riverview plans to visit the Beaverbrook Art Gallery in hope of catching Max Aitken’s ghost. The Canterbury Street Ghostbusters, who most recently sniffed out a bad apparition in the former judges’ chambers in Charlotte County, are going to bring their Mystery Machines to Fredericton next month. For years, security staff at the institution founded by Lord Beaverbrook have been spooked by the sound of footsteps, sudden icy drafts, faint ballroom music, doors that slam and doorknobs that jiggle. They also have heard toilets flushing — where the bathrooms used to be — and pounding coming from inside the gallery’s vault, where many of the paintings Beaverbrook collected were stored. “This one sounds very exciting,”
Beaverbrook Art Gallery security head George Hill looks at Philippe Mercier’s 1733 painting Bacchanalian Piece: Sir Thomas Samwell and Friends. Noel Chenier/Telegraph-Journal
says Tracy Carney, co-founder of the team that, as a hobby, tracks down stray spirits. Carney says she and her team of a half-dozen ghost chasers will conduct
an investigation at the gallery, with the approval of its security director, George Hill, a former Cincinnati police officer. “I’m glad to co-operate with them,” Hill says. “I think it is neat if they want
to come. I keep wondering what Max will do now that all of his paintings are in one room and he doesn’t have to travel between our vault and the East Wing to see them.” More than 200 paintings that Lord Beaverbook accumulated are on display until Nov. 27 in an exhibit called Art in Dispute. The ownership of the paintings is being contested between the gallery and two foundations established to look after his philanthropic interests. The Canterbury Street Ghostbusters will look for him with a bevy of equipment, including night vision goggles, infrared thermometers, electromagnetic field detectors, micro-cassette recorders and cameras. “We try to approach a project in a manner that is about halfway between psychology and science,” Carney says. “You have to be skeptical but, in a way, you have to believe at the same time. You know people have been looking for these buggers for years.” Before heading for Fredericton, the
team plans to camp at the Capitol Theatre in Moncton, which has been plagued by a poltergeist who keeps fiddling with an elevator. Carney says the theory is that the interruptions may be caused by the ghost of firefighter Alexander Lindsay, who was killed while battling a blaze in 1926 on that very spot. “To this point, the theatre has put between $15,000 and $20,000 into fixing the elevator and they still can’t figure it out,” she says. After that, they will investigate the disappearance of a principal at a former elementary school in Moncton, and will set up shop in Room 473 at the Algonquin Hotel in St. Andrews, where disconcerted guests have complained of hearing something go bump in the night. “I can’t wait to visit any of these places,” Carney says. “When other people are running away, I’ll be the one running toward the ghosts. You are wired a little differently when you want to run into them.”
16 • INDEPENDENTWORLD
JULY 17, 2005
SUNDAY THROUGH SATURDAY, JULY 17-23, 2005 — PAGE 17
‘A great story’ Former pot smuggler Brian O’Dea once handled 75-tonne marijuana shipments. A few years ago — after getting caught and spending time in a U.S. prison — he put an ad in the National Post looking for a job. Today he’s the producer of Creepy Canada on CTV. The autobiography should be interesting. By Stephanie Porter The Independent
rian O’Dea’s first experience dealing drugs happened “by accident.” He was in university, broke, looking for some pot, and decided to sell some to make enough money to cover his own stash. It turned out to be the first step down a tangled road. Over the next dozen years or so, O’Dea became involved in larger and larger smuggling and selling operations in Canada, Colombia, Jamaica and the west coast of the States. He owned boats, a trucking company, and had more than 100 people working with and under him. O’Dea’s last big deal — the one that landed him behind bars — involved importing over 75 tonnes of marijuana. “I was written off for years by all who knew me, and rightly so,” O’Dea tells The Independent. “Who could have anticipated I’d be willing to change? I was considered unredeemable. “And here I am, practically redeemed.” O’Dea speaks with honesty, candour, and all the benefit of hindsight and self-awareness. With great creativity, talent, good luck — and a high-profile ad in The National Post — he now has the career he’s always wanted. O’Dea produces Creepy Canada, the flagship show on the Outdoor Life Network in Canada, now heading into its fourth, most
ambitious, season. He’s just finishing final edits on his autobiography High: Confessions of a Pot Smuggler, to be released by Random House. He’s also well into writing a script for The Brian O’Dea story, a feature for CTV he hopes will go into production in Newfoundland and Labrador next summer. “Next year’s going to be just a giant year for me,” says O’Dea. “But it’s taken everything I’ve got to get there.” Looking back on his life in the early ’70s in St. John’s, O’Dea says it was remarkably easy to be drawn into the lucrative business of smuggling. “I just followed the business … it just had a way of getting to that level,” O’Dea says. “I had friends in the business, I was interested in it, and it was a reasonable business at one point filled with reasonable people.” He describes his early colleagues as “a bunch of guys having a bunch of fun. Our choice of mind-alterant just happened to be different from the legal. “I and all the people in the business I was involved in never thought we were doing a bad thing.” Business grew — revenues topped $100 million annually — and so did the list of acquisitions by O’Dea and his business partners: ships and tractor-trailers, an airplane, an island, a processing facility. The first time he tried to get out of the business was in 1984. He spent two months in a
recovery facility in Santa Barbara, hoping to kick his cocaine addiction. “I came out, rolled a joint, had a beer, and thought everything was going to be OK,” he says. “And six months later I was back in the bag.” A few years later, he tried again to start a legitimate business. Before he could get off the ground, he got a call from an acquaintance in Newfoundland who swore he had “the offload of the century” — 75 tonnes of marijuana. “We went to check it out, and that was the end of the legal venture. We decided we could do one last big deal.” The decision was to split the load up into two parts, to be moved in September of 1986 and 1987. Before the second shipment was complete, the group parted ways with one of their associates, unimpressed by his continual use of cocaine and prostitutes — against their working arrangement. The former partner in crime went straight to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration. The DEA watched and investigated the group for months. “We had to figure out what they knew,” says O’Dea. “We got another boat, took the load off the boat they were looking for — it was in Alaska hiding in a fjord … we got the load down safely to California in another boat while (the DEA) were watching Alaska. “When (the original) boat did get to the border, we got hit by 100 agents … and we were
waiting with doughnuts and coffee. They were quite upset, they were sure they had us.” True to his word, O’Dea got out of the drug business once and for all. He was working as a drug and alcohol counselor in Santa Barbara when the police finally came knocking. “I got a whack of time,” O’Dea says. When he showed up at the door of Terminal Island, a Los Angeles prison, he expected to be there up to 10 years. But during his time in Santa Barbara, O’Dea gathered a strong community of support. Ultimately, even the district attorney went to bat for him, and after a year, he was transferred to a Canadian jail. He maintains he made “some great friends” behind bars, began his process of serious reflection, and wrote 2,000 pages — which have since been whittled down into a 380-page book. After a year in Canadian prison, O’Dea was moved to the halfway house on Garrison Hill in St. John’s — where he spent two years, right next to one of the first houses he sold dope. Being a known entity in a small, gossipy town like St. John’s, O’Dea realized he wouldn’t be able to make a proper living in Newfoundland. His wife, Susannah, moved to Toronto, and after a successful application to the parole board, O’Dea joined her. By 2001, O’Dea was still struggling to build a career, desperately needing to shake his life up. While trying to write and design his resume, he came up with the newspaper ad that would garner more attention than he ever imagined. “Former marijuana smuggler seeks legal employment,” it began, then went on to outline his jail sentence and business experience: executive-level management, owner of a transportation network, manager of millions in annual revenues, fluent in three languages…. The ad, which ran for a week in the classified section of The National Post, landed him on the front page of that paper and on radio shows around the world, including a morning talk show in Colombia. He received more than 200 job offers, from international police forces, U.S. customs agents, the DEA, marketing agencies, drug See “Former marijuana smuggler,” page 19
‘My kids are everything to me’ Author of Suffer Little Children, Dereck O’Brien, isn’t suffering anymore By Jennifer Hickey For The Independent
tanding well over six-feet, with earrings dangling and a few tattoos, Dereck O’Brien doesn’t look like a man to mess with. Best known as the author of Suffer Little Children, an autobiography about growing up in foster care and living in Mount Cashel Orphanage, O’Brien has moved on. Now his life revolves around giving his family the life he never had. “I’m 45 years old now and my family means everything to me. My kids, my wife, they’re my everything,” he tells The Independent.
Before his first daughter came along 21 years ago, O’Brien was skeptical about his parenting abilities. “I was uneasy about having children because I was very afraid,” he says. “It seems your parents and family members have a role in who you are going to be. You learn morals from your family, but I grew up with nobody. All I knew was torment, ridicule and being physically and emotionally beaten.” O’Brien was nervous about not possessing the natural ability to care for and love a child. “It was my biggest fear,” he says. “I don’t know what it was, but once I found out that I was going to have a baby, I just knew I was
going to be a good parent. It was just in me.” O’Brien lives in Torbay today with his wife Dale, two daughters, Sabrina, 21, and Brittany, 17, and a friendly mutt named Tansa, a Christmas gift. (The name is Santa with the letters rearranged.) ‘GOOD RELATIONSHIP’ “My kids are everything to me,” he says with a smile. “I joke around with them. I embarrass them. I’ll take them out to the mall and I’ll sing and dance, I have a bit of fun. This is the stuff they remember. I have a good relationship with them.”
His oldest daughter, Sabrina, is a student at Memorial who just finished her third year. She was recently accepted into the faculty of social work.
Rhonda Hayward/The Independent
“That’s my girl,” he says, eyes welling with pride. “I think it’s because of what happened to me. If See “I had it all bottled up,” page 18
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18 • INDEPENDENTLIFE
‘I had it all bottled it up’
From page 17 she can keep it from happening to somebody else, she will. She’s very caring of other people’s feelings, I think that’s why she’s doing what she is, and I think she’s going to be good at it.” After bouncing between foster homes, some worse than others, at the age of 13 he moved into Mount Cashel. Though stories heard from other boys who lived at the orphanage are horrific, O’Brien says, for him, foster care was much worse. As a toddler, he was taken from his parents, a teenaged couple not ready for parenthood, and placed in foster care. He was locked in a basement, forced outside in the dead of winter without sufficient clothing, forced to eat from a plate on the floor like a dog, and beaten when he did something wrong. “They didn’t have to love me. They didn’t even have to like me,” he says. “But that did not give them the right to beat me. And they did.” In 1989, testifying at the Hughes inquiry into abuse at Mount Cashel wore on his emotions. He says he just needed to get things out; feelings and experiences stored deep needed to break loose. One day he picked up a notebook and let his pen flow. O’Brien says he had no intentions of ever publishing his writings. “I just started writing,” he says. “I had it all bottled it up, and had no way of releasing. It was there for my own personal release.” He treated the book as a diary. A friend leafed through the pages one day and suggested publishing the story. Scoffing at the idea, O’Brien’s friend argued that the public would be interested. Breakwater Books later jumped at the opportunity. O’Brien has matured into a strong man, physically and emotionally, and has passed on his strengths to his daughters. He is a role model, not just to his family, but to those touched by his story. Jennifer Hickey is a journalism intern from the Bay St. George campus of the College of the North Atlantic.
A group of young people cool off at Jim Dunn's Hole, a popular swimming hole in Flatrock. Rhonda Hayward/The Independent
JULY 17, 2005
INDEPENDENTLIFE • 19
‘Our brains are minimally engaged …’ Fantastic Four Starring Jessica Alba (out of four)
research team aboard a privately owned space station is hit by a blast of cosmic radiation, which drastically affects their DNA. Shortly after their recovery, they begin to show some unusual capabilities. The team leader, Dr. Reed Richards, can stretch his limbs like rubber; his ex-girlfriend, Sue Storm, can become invisible; her brother, Johnny, can generate fire at will, without getting burned. None of these abilities permanently affects their appearance. But Richards’ best friend, Ben Grimm, who was also aboard the mission — and received the greatest dose of radiation — did not fare as well. He has transformed into some kind of organic stone being, tough and incredibly strong, but outwardly, he looks nothing like he did. The trauma of this metamorphosis is compounded by the reaction of Grimm’s fiancée, who runs away in terror. When the group helps avert a tragedy on a bridge, they are dubbed The Fantastic Four by the media. While Richards is frantically working on a process to reverse their transformation, particularly for the sake of his friend, the rest of the world is getting ready to celebrate this new group of heroes. Unlike X-Men and Spider-Man, this latest entry from the ranks of Marvel Comics isn’t steeped in angst and social politics, which apparently holds true to the comic book. The highs and lows of family dynamics seems to play a large part in the source material, but the motion picture is focused on assembling the characters into that kind of a unit, so we only get a taste of
it here. What we do have, however, is a lightweight, entertaining film. The characters are interesting, although not complex, the special effects and stunts are well planned and executed, and the situations and lines, although occasionally tense, are often played for comic effect rather than anything darker. It’s easy to watch and equally as easy to like. Despite its source, Fantastic Four could easily be retooled to mirror its peers, probably giving fans of the dark and brooding comics the opportunity to come on board more willingly. This is the kind of thing that Hollywood usually does in trying to exploit a trend, and it to their credit that the film’s producers refrained from doing so here. Fantastic Four works as a bit of fun and frolic for a couple of hours. Our brains are only minimally engaged, and the only challenge is calibrating the appropriate pace of popcorn consumption. Get that worked out, and you’ll have a ball. Dark Water Starring Jennifer Connelly (out of four) Based on a novel by the Japanese author who also wrote the book upon which the film The Ring was based, Dark Water finds a young woman trying to make a go of it, having just split with her husband. A new job and a new home, albeit run down, are apparently a step down the social ladder for Dahlia Williams, but her first priority is her daughter’s welfare, and she’s determined to make things work out for the best. It isn’t long, however, before her plans are challenged by her husband’s attempt to acquire sole custody of their child, Ceci. As well, strange things
TIM CONWAY Film score begin to happen at her new apartment, including Ceci’s taking up an imaginary friend. With Jennifer Connelly as Dahlia, and the likes of John C. Reilly, and Pete Postlethwaite in supporting roles, as well as the skills of director Walter Salles (The Motorcycle Diaries), Dark Water has a number of elements to praise. The tone is creepy and unsettling, and the characters are well drawn and believable. The pace is a little slow, but that adds to the atmosphere. Unfortunately, as hard as everyone tries on this one, it still doesn’t get off the ground. More unfortunate, is that it’s probably unavoidable. In the last year we’ve been inundated with this kind of motion picture to the point that there’s hardly a minute that goes by that places us in territory that we regard as unfamiliar. While the film does keep us guessing, we know all of the appropriate questions to ask. Consequently, nothing plays out in a manner that is unexpected. Dark Water could have been a chilling treat, but the story’s long gone stale. Regardless of the hard work, and talent of those involved, this is a motion picture for five years ago, or maybe even five years from now. The connection we establish with Dahlia early in the film, based on our own experiences with change in our lives, gives way to a stronger bond, as we, like her, just need a break from this kind of thing. Tim Conway owns and operates Capital Video in Rawlin’s Cross, St. John’s. His next column appears July 31.
Brotherly love handles Two men with Carbonear roots shed pounds on television show Jennifer Hickey For The Independent
eave it to two men with Newfoundland roots to steal the show. Brothers Byron and Bruce Fillmore, whose parents originally hail from Carbonear, recently took part in the Canadian-based television series Taking It Off, a competitive weight-loss program directed at 30something individuals looking to lose weight — and fast. “I was born in Lab City, I’m a newf,” Byron tells The Independent. “All of my family is there, my wife’s a Newfoundlander, and we got married in Newfoundland. I consider myself a Newfoundlander, though I never really lived there.” “I was born here (in Dartmouth,) I’m kind of the bastard of the family, I’m the only mainlander,” laughs brother Bruce. “Ironically enough, I’m the only one who plays Newfoundland music.” The two brothers applied to be on the series after seeing a newspaper advertisement. Byron was interested, and since his brother Bruce has acting and auditioning experience, he took him along for the ride. “It made it less stressful when you show up on set, not knowing anyone would have been different, but we stuck together,” Byron says. “Almost everything we did was together, they (the producers) wanted it like that, and it was almost funnier for them having us together.” The Fillmores were known as the funny guys on the show. They never took themselves seriously, nor did they let the weight loss go to their heads. Bruce lost 77 pounds; Byron shed 63 pounds. “It wasn’t a life-changing experience for me,” Byron says. “Some of the other people had it go to their head and had it change their lives. It was more of a bump in the road for me, I had a lot of fun doing it, and I lost weight, felt good, and had fun.” Says Bruce, “The fact that the other guys were so serious, and we, well, weren’t, helped out as well.” Given their outgoing personalities, Byron and
Byron and Bruce Fillmore
Bruce decided to create a twist to motivate their weight loss: the one who lost the least amount of weight had to pay $100 for every additional pound the other lost. “The only way I can make him (Byron) motivated is to put some money on the line,” Bruce says. “The agony of me beating him was enough; I gave the money back an hour after the show.” The difference amounted to 14 pounds in Bruce’s favour — resulting in a $1400 payoff. Both men lost the weight while following the Atkins diet, with low-carb intake, and high protein. “I get ridiculed a lot, because of how I did it,” Bruce says. “A lot people don’t understand how things work. I was the guy that hated vegetables, that’s actually a big part of the Atkins diet. So I’m taking slack from the people who are against Atkins, and the same from people who are for Atkins. Basically, everybody thought I was an idiot.” Bruce stuck to his diet and visited the gym religiously. In the end, he sports a 222-pound body — a huge difference from his original 299-pound frame, and finally got the guts to propose to his girlfriend. Motivated by the bi-weekly weigh in, Byron stuck to his diet and gym routine as well, and is now a healthier 237 pounds (he was initially 300 pounds). Both men are still living and working in Dartmouth, and are settled into their lives. They never let the show change anything about themselves — other than their appearance, that is.
Chris Evans plays The Human Torch in Fantastic Four.
‘Former marijuana smuggler seeks legal employment’ From page 17 smugglers and organ traffickers. But it was a fortuitous invitation to participate on a panel on the Mike Bullard Show that eventually got him where he wanted to be. One of the other guests, an actor, happened to live in O’Dea’s Toronto neighbourhood. The two got talking, and eventually the actor introduced O’Dea to some friends in the movie business. Among them was Bill Burke, who had come up with an idea for a TV show called Mystery Tour. O’Dea had some connections at CTV, the pitch was made — and Creepy Canada was born, with Burke as director, and O’Dea as producer. After two seasons on CTV Travel, the show moved to the Outdoor Life Network. “I had minor experience in production before,” O’Dea says. “And I’ve been an actor my whole life; that’s what (my old) business is all about … “I knew nothing about the technical aspects of show business, but I took responsibility financially for the show, and hired people who knew things.” O’Dea says he spent $100,000 to make the first two seasons of the show work — on OLN, he’s got budget enough to do the program the way he
wants. There will be a few changes in season four: O’Dea will be the host of the show, and Creepy Canada is going to leave the country for the first time, filming spots in the U.S. and Europe. These days, O’Dea’s television and book work keep him busy; he’s up every day at 5:30 a.m. to catch an hour of time to himself before his phone starts ringing. He’s excited and delighted for the future. “I’m just astounded I’m actually a recognized television producer in Canada,” he says, laughing. “I’m even in the association.” O’Dea says he isn’t even tempted to go back to the drug underworld. “I always would have the opportunity to go back in the business, but I haven’t got the least bit of interest in that,” he says. “All that’s done now, that’s in a book, it’s no longer in my life, that’s for history … I want to tell my story, and I go to great lengths to do so … (to say) there’s a rational human being here who at one point was broken and discarded. My life is different today and all I can do is live my life today the best I know how. “It’s a great story. My grandchildren are going to love to sit on my knee and listen to it 100 times.”
Jennifer Hickey is a journalism intern from the Bay St. George campus of the College of the North Atlantic.
The Shakespeare By The Sea Festival presents
Swords are cool...
Henry V July 8 - 31 Fridays, Saturdays & Sundays 6pm - Rain or Shine Topsail Beach Amphitheatre, CBS For more information, visit www.nfld.com/~sbts or call 834-2099
JULY 17, 2005
20 • INDEPENDENTLIFE
Curtis Holden fom Winsor, Ont., was the winner of Indigo’s Get It First contest. The 10-year-old was at Chapters in St. John’s July 15 with the newest Harry Potter book, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, the first copy in North America. Paul Daly/The Independent
Thirteen reasons to read this book So Beautiful By Ramona Dearing The Porcupine’s Quill, 2004
even Reasons Why I Am an Ideal Candidate for Rescue is one of 13 strong arguments for reading So Beautiful, Ramona Dearing’s Winterset Award-nominated short story collection. Written in the form of a letter from Osmond Vinnicombe, punctilious meter-man and obsessive ant farm owner, to his GP, the story reveals a man desperate to be rescued from himself. Vinnicombe pleads for a prescription for “the Uplifter” so that he may reclaim his life from the clutches of suicidal desperation and existential ennui. “You should know, my dear Dr. Rumper,” his letter begins, “that I am often overcome by a listless fatigue, a worrisome sense that the future is no more than an extension of the monotony of the moment.” It is at once a hilariously funny and pitiful text, one that readers will find entertaining and endearing, frustrated as they may be by the absence of closure. Dearing, in fact, routinely refuses to indulge herself or her readers by dampening unsettling narratives with pat resolutions. Fascia is similarly restrained. It tells the story of a man named Misha who is attempting to exorcise the memory of his abusive father through Rolfing® (yes, this is real and yes, it is trademarked), a form of massage that treats the membranous covering of muscle; used, among other things, as a stress-relieving therapy. When he finally finds a measure of peace it is through the realization that his father did indeed care for him and his sister, that the man wasn’t a monster all of the time. But this eventual reconciliation is an uneasy one: “‘So you’re saying you loved him,’” Misha’s wife Sandra prompts him towards the
MARK CALLANAN On the shelf
end of the story. He will not commit to an answer. The best example of Dearing’s narrative restraint comes in An Apology, the final story in the collection. Brother Gerard Lundrigan is being tried for the sexual abuse of 11 orphans, now grown men, who were once under his care. The orphanage where the crimes took place has since been demolished and Brother Lundrigan’s life has carried on, taking him to his current residence in Ontario. Dearing does not once offer us an easy assurance of guilt or innocence, preferring instead to end the story in ambiguity with Lundrigan’s culpability no more clear than at the beginning. “Gerard has begun to put together some theories,” Dearing tells us, “they’re men looking to blame, to make someone accountable for their empty spots […] all they want is this one chance in their lives to give out orders and have someone obey.” If we decide that Gerard is guilty as charged then his “apology,” a document he drafts but
never actually passes over, is most chilling for its utter denial of guilt: “I’m sorry you made me come here,” it reads, “I’m sorry you’ve made such a fuss. I’m sorry you want my blood.” Dearing’s ability to convincingly speak the mind of a selfrighteous Christian Brother is just one of many impressive feats of ventriloquism in So Beautiful. A large vocal range allows her to move seamlessly from character to character, from sex to sex, from one social group to another. She is adept at characterization, at dialogue, at description and pretty much everything else required of a skilled storyteller. Stylistically, Dearing’s work is understated — she reveals as much in subtext as in printed word — yet she is equally capable of direct and wonderfully poetic formulations. “Row houses chatter,” she writes in St. Jerome, “they exhale thumps and door bangs and supper conversations and the sound of water squeezing through shower heads.” While describing the view of the ocean from a downtown Mexican restaurant, Dearing declares that the Atlantic “has a small vocabulary: gale, smashed, cold, missing, grey. It would laugh at words like siesta and fiesta and then smash them.” If I had to identify a distinguishing feature of the 13 stories of So Beautiful — which otherwise range vast tracts of land, exploring numerous settings and even more types of characters within those settings — it would be the sense of incompleteness they leave in passing; those same loose ends at which, more often than not, we find our own lives. There are no neat endings, Dearing tells us through her stories; life is all frayed ends. Mark Callanan is a writer and reviewer living in Rocky Harbour. His next column appears July 31.
JULY 17, 2005
INDEPENDENTLIFE • 21
No shortages of choices in terms of camps for kids
Jennifer Hickey For The Independent
Girls attending the camp must provide a letter or reference from a gym teacher, or a sports coach, and are taught the basic aspects of firefighting. They rom music and arts to sorcery and survival train the same way a firefighter trains. skills, there’s no end to the choice of summer In addition to the programs offered by Memorial camps in the St. John’s area. and Marine, community centres around the city also Entitled Marine Pursuits, the Marine Institute offer a variety of day camps. offers a series of weeklong camps, aimed at high The Froude Avenue Community Centre targets school students aged 14-18, 210 low-income houses in the focusing on engineering and area, and programs include recreunderwater robotics. Memorial ational activities and field trips. “In order to make it University’s residence is open to The program even provides (the camp) affordable breakfast. all kids involved in the program. The fee, which is subsidized, is “We’re a non profit organizafor the people $125 — including meals, resition,” says Enid Churchill, prodence, and camp activities. gram director. “In order to make it we are to serve, Memorial, in partnership with affordable for the people we are to the Marine Institute, offers a wide serve, we only charge $15 for the we only charge variety of day camps throughout summer.” Additional charges the summer under the name of $15 for the summer.” may apply for a field trip, but Kids on Campus (formerly most times the center pays what it known as MUN in the Sun). can to assist parents. Enid Churchill “It’s educationally based,” says Another program aimed toward Sara Murray, program developer. lower income housing is offered “It incorporates all kinds of science and engineer- by the Rabbittown Community Centre. Josh ing, and we try to cover a lot of ground.” Mercer, head counsellor, says the program is Kids on Campus include French camps, music offered to lower income families in the area, but all programs, art and drawing, geology, and even a kids are welcome. weeklong program called School of Wizardry, There’s no reason for a child to complain of borerecreating Hogwart’s School of Witchcraft and dom this summer. No matter what a kid’s interest Wizardry, the school Harry Potter attends in the — be it science or Harry Potter — there’s an affordpopular novels. able summer camp out there. The Marine Institute also offers a new firefighting camp this year called Glow. Taking place in Jennifer Hickey is a journalism intern from the Foxtrap, the camp teaches female students in Grade Bay St. George campus of the College of the North 12 about firefighting. Atlantic.
EVENTS JULY 17 • Banquet sculpture/installation by John MacCallum at Torbay Beach showing from 2-4 p.m. • The Signal Hill Tattoo, two shows daily, 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. at Signal Hill, call 772-5367 JULY 18 • Words and Imagery, bookmaking workshop for kids, 1-4 p.m., Anna Templeton Centre, call 739-7623 JULY 19 • Tulips Tour 2005 Luluk Purwanto & the Helsdingen Trio 12:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. at The Rooms, continuing July 20. • Harold Davis will be signing copies of The Starrigans of Little Brook Bottom from 10 a.m. to noon at The Downhomer. • Lori Lane and Kathy Winsor will be signing copies of Nana’s Quilt from noon to 2 p.m. at The Downhomer. JULY 20 • The Signal Hill Tattoo, two shows daily, 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. at Signal Hill, call 772-5367 • Stones in his Pockets featuring Aiden Flynn and Steve O’Connell. Rabbittown Theatre, 7:30 p.m., call 739-8220 • St. John’s Annual Jazz Festival, featuring Bill Frisell. Two shows available; 7 p.m. and 9 p.m. • L’Orkestre Des Pas Perdus at the Majestic Theatre from 9 p.m.-11 p.m. • The Mark Belbin Quintet live at Grafenberg’s from 9 p.m.-11p.m. • Threnody Peace Education Project concert. 8 p.m., Arts and Culture Centre JULY 21 • Steel Magnolias at the Holy Heart of Mary Auditorium, 8 p.m., tickets on sale at Auntie Crae’s and Bennington Gate. • Neil Diamond Dinner TheatreStarring Peter Halley, Shelley Neville, Darrin Martin and Steve Power; 7 p.m. The Majestic Theatre, call 579-3023, cost: $51.50 + HST. JULY 22 • Neil Diamond… Dinner TheatreStarring Peter Halley, Shelley Neville, Darrin Martin and Steve Power; 7 p.m. The Majestic Theatre, 390 Duckworth St. Tel: 579-3023 Cost: $51.50 + HST. • Lunchtime Concert Series, an African group performing at Harbourside Park from 12:30 p.m. • King Harry V, presented by Shakespeare by the sea, Topsail Beach Amphitheatre, 6 p.m., call 579-7469. • Jerry Granelli Sandhills Reunion 8:00 p.m. – 9:20 p.m. at the MUN School of Music. • Joel Miller Mandala at the Majestic Theatre at 11:00 p.m. • Patrick Boyle Quartet, Duane Andrews Quartet, Trio Derome, Guilbeault, Tanguay performing at Harbourside Park 7:00 p.m. – 11:00 p.m. JULY 23 • The Signal Hill Tattoo, two shows daily, 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. at Signal Hill, call 772-5367 • Summer Dance opening today, including 17 artists, using paint and sculpture in movement at The Leyton Gallery. • King Harry V, presented by
Shakespeare by the sea. Topsail Beach Amphitheatre, 6 p.m., call 579-7469. • World Music Night with Mopaya, Curtis Andrews’ African Jazz Project, Vibrations and Columbian Dancers at the Majestic Theatre, starting at 11 p.m. • Mary Barry at Grafenberg’s from 9:00 p.m. – 11:00 p.m. • Free show at Harbourside Park with Johnston Lear, Janet Cull Band, Vibrations, Glen Collins Quartet, Mack Barfoot Quartet, Columbian Dancers and Loco Motif from noon 6p.m. • Joel Miller Mandala and Jean Beaudet Trio perform in Harbourside Park from 7:00 p.m. – 11:00 p.m. IN THE GALLERIES • Craft Council of Newfoundland and Labrador’s Annual Member Exhibit, until Sept. 3. • Glimpses of Nature, will be on exhibit until July 24, at MUN Botanical Garden, exhibit hours will vary. • Nature: Looking at looking behind, first solo exhibition of Eileen Gear Bragg, and New Works, by Tina Riche at Victoria Manor Shoppes and Gallery in Harbour Grace, until August 4. • Cindy’s Circle, exhibit of artwork by Cindy Furey, until Aug. 13, Balance Restaurant.
Last week was the 190th anniversary of Napoleon's Surrender celebrated every year at the Newman Wine Valuts in St. John's. This year Napoleon was played by city councillor Paul Sears and was brought in by (L-R) Gnr. Jason Tobin, Cpl. Peter Paiva members of the Signal Hill Tattoo. Paul Daly/The Independent
22 • INDEPENDENTLIFE
JULY 17, 2005
JULY 17, 2005
INDEPENDENTLIFE • 23
All aboard the big red bus
British Island Tours has been offering double-decker expeditions around St. John’s for almost 10 years, playing host to all nationalities and informing visitors of the quirks and foibles of local history and folklore. Picture editor Paul Daly and reporter Clare-Marie Gosse recently hopped on board to find out what tourists were learning and to get their feedback on Newfoundland and Labrador.
omewhere in St. John’s on any given summer’s day, a big red 35-year-old British-born bus trundles the hilly streets. Her passengers are most often tourists — young and old — from all walks of life, from as close by as Nova Scotia to as far away as Australia. Some are re-visitors; others come here upon the recommendations of friends; still more just love the culture and people. For others, it was the furthest point in Canada their air miles could get them. Fred Petten steers the bus, which once traversed the streets of York in England. He’s accompanied by a tour guide who rides the top level along with the bulk of passengers, keeping up a steady stream of anecdotal stories about St. John’s through a PA system. “I’ve met people from New Zealand, Australia, Asia, really right around the world,” Petten tells The Independent. “You almost can expect to meet anybody … I should be documenting it, I see so many faces.” Driving for almost 10 years for British Island Tours, the company that runs the operation, Petten is used to navigating the large vehicle with its right-hand-side steering wheel. “You just take your time. You can’t drive too fast because you’re doing a tour. You just watch for every imaginable hazard that could face you.” The three-hour, hop-on tour runs twice a day (9:15 a.m. and 1:15 p.m.), starting off at the Delta Hotel, with a stop at the Fairmont. From there, the bus heads off down Kingsbridge Road. On warm days the top deck is open-air and as the tour passes people on the streets they often wave and smile as tidbits of history float down. TOUR DE FORCE With an obvious personal interest in local stories, 25-year-old Brian Dunphy, the tour guide, gets the ball rolling immediately. He explains the Forest Road area was once considered the wealthiest part of St. John’s, after merchants living in the downtown relocated to escape fire threats after the great fire of 1892. From there the bus circuits Quidi Vidi Lake, with a stop-off break in the village gut. Dunphy talks of an urban legend surrounding the name of the lake — that it may have been named after a popular mistress of a local brothel — but admits it most likely comes from the Latin “that I seek.” Passengers decide whether to check out Quidi Vidi Brewery, or the nearby quaint antique shop with their 15-minute break. William and Martha Hogarth arrived from Toronto two days ago. Today they’re celebrating their 47th wedding anniversary and say the decision to come back to Newfoundland — they visited the west coast once previously — was made just a week beforehand. “If you want to hear the real story, my daughter and her husband and their children and their friends have our cottage for the week and they have about eight children,” says William ruefully. “So we’re here because of that.” Martha says they love the people, don’t mind the weather and enjoy whale-watching. She also extensively praises the interior design and layout of the newly opened Rooms. Most of the passengers have already travelled, or plan to travel, across the island. John Taves and his wife, Eileen, from British
Columbia, recently visited Western Brook Fjord in Gros Morne. John says it was the highlight of their trip so far. As first-time travellers to Newfoundland and Labrador, he says they decided to come based on how far their air miles would stretch. For first-time visitors Martial and Louise Laliberte, from Montreal, it was a matter of wanting to see every part of Canada — as well as following the recommendations of friends. “I’ve wanted to come for a long time and finally we decided that this year is the year,” says Louise. “From what we saw, it is very beautiful.” Martial says New Brunswick is often the more popular scenic province for Montrealers to visit, because they don’t hear about Newfoundland and Labrador quite so much. The bus heads off towards the downtown area, with stops at Government House, the Basilica and The Rooms. From there it laps around George Street, Water Street, Harbour Drive and Duckworth Street, with Dunphy pointing out factoids such as the reason for the “jelly-bean” houses, which were so-called by visiting war-time Americans. He says it’s thought the houses are so brightly coloured so that fishermen wandering home at the end of a night (quite often tipsy) could easily pick out their home in the fog. The tour concludes at Signal Hill. Penney says it’s the most popular stop, particularly on sunny days. “When they get here they see the ocean and the hilly ruggedness of the province, they’re blown away … it’s just a different landscape and people are overwhelmed and fascinated.” Throughout the tour, in typical odd-weather fashion, fog has been rolling in and out, punctuating the bright sunshine. As passengers spill out to investigate Cabot Tower, there’s a break in the clouds and blue sky peers through. As Dunphy sits on a stone wall, he says he enjoys meeting so many interesting people and learning about his home town at the same time. Over his two and a half years, Dunphy says he’s added bits and pieces to his tour spiel that he’s picked up along the way. He says the most amusing bit of trivia he’s learned about was that George Street (named after George 1st) was once called Cocks Row. Dunphy says one of the more interesting nuggets was that the ocean used to come right up to the edge of Water Street — hence the name — and that Harbour Drive was once non-existent. ROOMS POPULAR He says he gets a lot of positive feedback about the province from the passengers aboard the bus and, most recently, everyone has been praising The Rooms. “I’ve been hearing it the whole time since it opened,” says Dunphy. “Three women who were sitting on the first front seats, from Montreal, they said, ‘It was beautiful’ and I was like, that’s three more, giving the thumbs up.” Although 50 per cent of his customers are Canadians, he often meets people from much farther away. Dunphy remembers one woman from India who had recently moved to Toronto. “She said she’d love to move her family to Newfoundland. She said there’s so much room here, there’s so much space and so much nature … she said, ‘Coming here really makes me want to call my family and tell them to come to Newfoundland.’”
JULY 17, 2005
24 • INDEPENDENTLIFE
ome Front On the Open your eyes to a A special section in cooperation with The Eastern Newfoundland Home Builders’ Association
The following interview is the fifth in a series of ten, in which The Independent, in conjunction with the Eastern Newfoundland Home Builders’ Association, will profile local trades people who have been recognized for excellence at the Provincial and National Level. John Roberts is owner/operator of The Trimmer, a general contracting firm. The Trimmer was awarded Subcontractor of the Year for 2004 and 2005 by the Eastern Newfoundland and Labrador Home Builders’ Association. How did you first get involved in
Answers from those who’ve been there
this Business? I began digging ditches. No kidding. When I started out, 27 years ago, you didn’t have all the equipment you have now. A lot of the houses we would renovate didn’t have any basement at all, so we would have to crawl in under and dig a one manually. I stayed with that company for a long time, and I did every job there was to do, learned every aspect of it. I’ve been self-employed for 17 years now; before The Trimmer I owned its sister company, a home improvement operation. I opened The Trimmer 6 years ago.
What’s a business day like for you? I get up at about 4:45 a.m. and turn my phone on at about 5. I have the largest cell phone airtime package they have on offer. I wear out about two phones a year. I’m usually out of the house by about 5:30. All day long I’m out at job sites, dealing with customers, sub contractors and my own team. I get home late in the evening, then I start in with follow up calls I might have missed during the day, create invoices that need to be sent out, and deal with quotes for potential clients. I do all that end of the business myself because I
honestly feel I can do it best. If a customer calls me for a quote, and I were to hand it off to someone else, if they’re late coming back, or the quote isn’t what the client expected, it’s my name they’re going to remember, not an accounting clerk. So I’d rather just do it myself initially, and right every time. If something goes wrong, I have no one to blame but myself. I usually head to bed around 12 or so, then up in five hours to do it all again. How has membership in the ENHBA benefited you and your company?
Honestly, becoming a member of the ENHBA was one of my proudest moments in the business. When I was kid, first starting out, I used to see the logo and think about being a member. To me it meant that the industry and the public alike recognized you. I’m an incredibly proud member; I even have my truck decaled out with their logo and the awards they’ve given me. The association membership has given me so much business and so many connections that I would never have had without them. Who do you turn to when you have questions about the
JULY 17, 2005
INDEPENDENTLIFE • 25
On the ome Front world of possibilities
A special section in cooperation with The Eastern Newfoundland Home Builders’ Association
business? Pat Dowcey. He’s my mentor. He brought me into this business, and this business has given me everything I have. My life, my home, my family, all of it came from that initial start Pat gave. What’s life about, outside of work? I’ve really gotten into gardening lately, just the past couple of years. I used to play a lot of crib, that sort of thing, but lately I love the garden. I recently won my fifth ENHBA golf tournament, that’s always a great time, I get to combine work and play there. I’m planning to run in for Town Council in Paradise in the next
election. I think the Town of Paradise is giving away so much. Paradise has so much land, desirable land, for development. But we don’t ask for enough in return for that land.
small things to me, that mean a lot to someone else. I’ve been involved with Big Brothers Big Sisters since 1987. I dedicated the whole back of my truck to promotion for them.
work together as a team. Right now I work with about six groups of people, sub-contractors and my own team, and everyone has their forté, mine just happens to be running the company.
There’s a separate building code in St. John’s and CBS than in Paradise.
I have a family too. There’s my wife, two girls and a boy. I try and spend as much time with them as I can, give them as much as I can, beyond just money. But it can be tough to find the time if you work 18 hour days like I do. That’s the deal with having your own business though, and I think they understand it.
The labourer for instance: I was that guy. I respect him; he’s worth just as much to me as anybody. In a way it all hangs on him; he’s got to keep so many people on the site happy. So why not pay him a decent wage, keep him happy and with you for a long time.
I just want an even keel. We’re a municipality surrounded by municipalities; they should all be in balance. I sponsor a number of sports teams; 3 kids soccer teams in Paradise, a Minor Hockey team in CBS, a Ladies Basketball in St. John’s, a Men’s Ball Hockey team, a softball team. For me it’s really important to give back like that,
What’s your philosophy about owning your own business? I never like to say people work for me. People work with me. We
One of the biggest issues facing our industry right now is the under ground economy. But we’re the creator of that economy, the industry I mean. We’re to blame for it. If I have five guys working for me, and I know one or two of
them are out doing it for cash in the evening, that’s my fault; I should just let them go. It’s too easy for them to have their cake and eat it too. We allow them to get paid cash and still get a regular paycheque. If they had to go out and compete with legitimate contractors, they’d be back wanting that by-the-hour pay quickly. So if all businesses let their people know if you do under the table work, you won’t do legitimate work as well, it’ll make an enormous difference. Overall I think the most important thing is that every customer deserves equal treatment. Every job is equally important. If you remember that and act accordingly, you’ll succeed.
JULY 17, 2005
26 • INDEPENDENTLIFE
A special section in cooperation with The Eastern Newfoundland Home Builders’ Association
Interviewing Contractors It is very important to thoroughly interview any contractor you consider hiring. It’s not good enough to simply ask the contractor if they can do the job. You need to obtain the following information: The contractor’s “history”— how long they have been in business, their experience doing jobs like yours and how their company
operates (e.g., do they have their own staff or regular subcontractors).
particularly what ideas or suggestions they can offer to make it work better or to get better value for the money.
References for at least three of the contractor’s past customers where the work was similar to what you are planning.
Their initial “ballpark” estimate of costs for your project and when it could be started and finished. Beyond this specific information, the interview provides you with an opportunity to determine how you
What they think of your project,
feel about each contractor. It is important that you have confidence in the contractor you hire and are able to talk with them easily. The larger and more complex your project, the more important the relationship between you and the contractor becomes. In the case of a major renovation project, you can end up with the contractor and their employees in your home
for an extended period, so you need to be comfortable with whomever you hire. If, after interviewing a contractor, you find you are not comfortable talking with them, or they are not able to answer your questions adequately, they are probably not the right contractor for you. Don’t hire them.
Getting Bids Once you’ve interviewed contractors and checked their references, you should have a "short list" of those who you feel are most suitable for your needs. The next step is to get actual bids for the work. How many bids do you need? There are no hard and fast rules here. Some consumers prefer to get a number of bids before making a decision. Others find that, after the interview process, there
is one contractor they strongly prefer and only ask that contractor for a formal bid.
There are a few things you need to know before asking for, and evaluating, contractor bids.
What really matters is that you end up feeling that you have adequate information to make the right choice of contractor. However, as a general rule, three bids will usually provide sufficient information for you to make a decision.
The first is the importance of clear and detailed plans and specifications. All contractors must bid on the same basis, and it’s your responsibility to provide the information needed. If you don’t provide adequate plans and/or specifications for
your project, each contractor will decide how they will carry out the work and what products and materials they will use. This is likely to leave you comparing “apples and oranges”– dissimilar bids that all represent different levels of quality. The second is the importance of carefully reviewing all the information presented in the contractors’ bids. You need to verify that
each bid proposes to do the work as you have specified. You should carefully compare the prices, payment terms and work schedule proposed by each contractor. And you need to consider all of the information you gathered through your contractor interviews and customer reference checks. It is strongly recommended that you look for the bid that offers you the best overall value, not just the lowest price.
JULY 17, 2005
On the About Plans and Specifications
Plans and specifications for your project provide the basis for obtaining contractor bids and preparing a contract with the company your select. The level of detail required varies depending on the size and complexity of the job. However, without detailed plans and specifications, it is difficult for contractors to accurately bid on a job and virtually impossible for you to compare bids you receive. Plans consist of drawings, diagrams or sketches that describe the work to be done, including all measurements and construction details. For new home construction or a renovation project that involves any alteration or addition to the structure of your home, this means full and complete construction drawings. These drawings will also be required to obtain a building permit. For simple projects that don’t require a building permit, less formal drawings may be adequate, but these must still provide a thorough and clear description
of the work you want done. Specifications are a detailed list of the products and materials to be used in the project and can include such things brand names, model numbers and colours. For small jobs, such as shingle replacement, the necessary specifications would include brand and style, colour and wear warranty of the new roofing material. For large jobs like a new home or major renovation, a much lengthier list of specifications will be needed, including details on all structural and finishing materials to be used. So how do you get the plans and specifications you need? Many contractors will provide design services for a fee. If you pay a contractor to prepare drawings and specifications, you should not feel obligated to hire them to do the work. Use the plans and specifications you purchased as the basis for obtaining contractor bids.
INDEPENDENTLIFE • 27
A special section in cooperation with The Eastern Newfoundland Home Builders’ Association
JULY 17, 2005
28 • INDEPENDENTLIFE
GALLERYPROFILE OWEN WHELAN Visual Artist
wen Whelan spends quite a bit of time outdoors, walking on trails, through the woods, around St. John’s. And all the while, he says, “I’m seeing paintings.” Whelan, who worked in construction before studying education, spent years as a schoolteacher, eventually retiring as an elementary school principal in Port au Choix. His favourite subject to teach was art, and he spent years leading students, from kindergarten through high school, in drawing and painting techniques. “I love teaching art because that’s one of the areas all kids love to be,” he says. “They may not all love math or English, but art they can all get into.” Done with teaching, Whelan is settling into his third career — painting. He has a show currently hanging at the Cynthia I. Noel Gallery in St. John’s. The landscapes, flowers and still lifes are done in oil and acrylic. They’re striking in their use of vibrant colours, alive with bright oranges, yellows, greens and red. “I’m more interested in colour than anything, and it is hard to learn,” he says. “It takes a lifetime, really. What gets people is the colour … but the most important thing, too, is knowing when to stop. “I’ve gone too far on occasion,” he laughs. Whelan spent his childhood in Riverhead, St. Mary’s Bay, and has lived in many places throughout Newfoundland and Labrador. He spent the biggest chunk of time – some 25 years — living on the Northern Peninsula. “That’s where most of my impressions come from,” he says. “I want to get back there … out on the Northern Peninsula, there are a million paintings.” While many of Whelan’s paintings are landscapes, they are rarely identifiable as specific places and times. With the exception of a piece from Trout River in Gros Morne (a striking red barn against a yellow field and a dark forest behind), he says his compositions come from his imagination.
“There’s one, I call it Gros Morne, but it isn’t exact,” he says. “I just look for the colour and the impression … might just use the actual land as a guide.” He says the paintings are built from experience — memories of walking through snowy woods, or observing for-
est fires, or the colours of the changing seasons. Whelan is forever studying the work of other artists, through books, websites and gallery visits. He’s taken workshops with as many local artists as he can, all in an effort to improve his technique.
Whelan plans to spend some time this fall and winter in Gros Morne. He’d also like to work on some new scenes, and perhaps a series featuring the sights and streets around The Rooms. “Painting will hardly pay the bills, but it helps,” he says. “The fun is in
doing it, but it’s also good when people appreciate what you’re trying to do.” Whelan’s work is on display at the Cynthia Noel Gallery for the month of July. For more info, contact firstname.lastname@example.org —Stephanie Porter
The Gallery is a regular feature in The Independent. For information, or to submit proposals, please call (709) 726-4639, or e-mail email@example.com
SUNDAY THROUGH SATURDAY, JULY 17-23, 2005 — PAGE 29
VOCM’s Open Line host Randy Simms.
Paul Daly/The Independent
By Clare-Marie Gosse The Independent
ewfoundland Capital Corporation (NewCap), owner of close to 70 radio station licences in Canada, is like a media ninja, slipping smoothly and quietly up the broadcasting ladder. With the most licences in the country, and as one of the top-six radio broadcasters in terms of revenue, this locally born, technically small company is making a big name in the business. The company, which is close to 30 years old, was started as a conglomerate by Gander businessman and former Navy officer Harry Steele. Now headed by his son, Robert, it focuses entirely on broadcasting and operates four stations in the province — VOCM, K-Rock, Hits FM and Radio Newfoundland (overseen by Steele Communications and Robert’s sibling, John Steele). “I got involved with the company in 2001 in an official capacity and I really wanted to streamline the company,” Robert Steele tells The Independent from his head office in Dartmouth, N.S. “Really over the last four and a half years we’ve gone from, I guess, 19 licenses to almost 70.” NewCap has purchased at least five new licences this year alone and predicts 2005 revenues of around $70 million — $5 million greater than last year. “Specifically we want to double the size of our company within five years. I said that a year ago so I’ve got four years left — we’ll do it.” After 23 years in the Navy, Robert’s father, Harry, began working as vice-president of marketing for Eastern Provincial Airways — an airline originally
Caps off NewCap, owner of dozens of radio stations across Canada, including VOCM, plans to double its size by 2009
owned by the Crosbie family. With the help of investors, he took control of the airline in the mid 1970s. The company morphed into an airline transportation company with spinoffs in publishing, printing and broadcasting, buying its first radio station in 1985 in Charlottetown, P.E.I. The main business was still transportation, however, and Robert says his father “reluctantly” relocated the operation to Dartmouth from Gander. “It was a regional based carrier at that point in time, that was in the early ’80s, and he was under great pressure to really move the operation to a more central location and he reluctantly did that, but it made it obviously much more efficient to operate the regional airline out of a central base like Halifax as opposed to Gander.” The location stuck through with the company’s switch to broadcasting, but Robert says the family and the business remains closely connected with Newfoundland and Labrador. They maintain a family home in Gander and Robert says he visits the province regularly. “We’ve got an extensive network in Newfoundland. We’re very passionate about Newfoundland, it’s our home base; we’re in tune as to what’s going on. I’ve always got a keen interest in what’s happening in Newfoundland.” Robert says NewCap focuses on having good talent and good management teams. “It’s all about people … our style, what we do is we build up a critical mass and then we have a core management team run that operation, as we do in Alberta and as we do in Newfoundland.” About half of the company’s revenue comes from See “‘Coast to coast’ plans,” page 31
Newcap founder Harry Steele
Taking care of business
ews this week that Leslie Galway, former president and CEO of Newfoundland Ocean Industry Association, is taking on the job of deputy minister of Business was a pleasant surprise. Ms. Galway has done an admirable job as head of the oil and gas sector’s industry association and is well respected. She will put her considerable skills, knowledge and enthusiasm to work for the province helping to shape the new department. She has a depth of connections in the oil and gas sector and will, hopefully, provide exceptional insight to ensure the growth of that sector, as well as many others.
The bottom line The key role of the long-heralded Business Department will be business and investment attraction. There is not, as yet, a clear picture as to how the department will go about its mandate in a manner different then previous administrations. Hopefully they will do so with a mix of gusto and market knowledge. Key here will be the development of a strategic approach that builds on our strengths and presents
viable opportunities for business investment. The province needs to be rebranded and repositioned so that Newfoundland and Labrador is considered, as it should be, a growth area for business. I have spent countless hours, as have many others, on the national business scene explaining the province’s strengths, extolling its potential and ensuring business leaders understand the benefits of doing business here. It has not been an easy task; many did not recognize the potential or the province’s changed economic environment. One of the first steps that should be taken by the department is to gather industry associations, business and
community leaders to pinpoint opportunities and co-ordinate approaches. Too many are unsure of the department’s role and need to hear of the efforts undertaken. The department will also be responsible for providing leadership and coordination across government departments and Crown agencies to promote business development and good business relations. This is essential — not only for business attraction — but to help develop and expand existing business. There is confusion as to the different roles of the Business Department and the Industry, Trade and Rural Renewal Department. Industry will “continue to
provide programs and services that strengthen capacity and community and business development in all regions of the province, do the background in developmental work for trade and investment, and continue to operate such promotional programs as Getting the Message Out and the Ambassador Program. The Department of Business will pursue specific investment attraction deals.” Concerns have also been expressed over the costs associated with having separate departments. A sum of $1 million has been allocated in this year’s budget for the Business Department’s
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See “Bottom line,” page 31
30 • INDEPENDENTBUSINESS
JULY 17, 2005
CBC awaiting strike vote results
ore than 5,500 CBC television and radio employees across Canada took a strike vote July 13 and 14, but the results won’t be available until later this week. Officials with the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation and Canadian Media Guild, the union representing CBC’s unionized employees, have been in contract talks since March 31, 2004. Both sides have hit a wall on at least two issues — contracting out and bumping rights. Union officials admitted in the July 10 edition of The Independent they were hoping for a strong strike vote — describing it as a “big, heavy weapon ” — but said the union is doing everything possible to avoid a strike. Negotiations, when complete, will combine three contracts into one, covering workers from British Columbia to Newfoundland and Labrador and foreign correspondents around the world — excluding CBC workers in Quebec and Moncton, N.B. Brandon Elliott, one of 12 negotiators for the union, says contracting out
Premier Danny Williams speaks with CBC reporters Nancy Walsh and Peter Gullage.
will allow the CBC to hire employees on short-term contracts — impacting morale and quality of work. The second sticking point, he says, will allow the CBC to limit bumping rights to the areas and mediums in which employees
work. For example, a television reporter who’s laid off in St. John’s could only bump a TV reporter in the city. The television reporter couldn’t bump a radio or Internet reporter in St. John’s or a
Paul Daly/The Independent
television reporter in another province. The negotiating process is slated to end July 24. If workers vote to strike, a 21-day cooling off period will take place. Employees would be in a strike position three days after that.
The CBC is preparing for the possibility of a strike and while a CBC spokesman wouldn’t provide details, he says programming, including news programs, will continue. — Alisha Morrissey
Quality over quantity New Brunswick’s discerning beer market welcomes another Red By Kevin Barrett Telegraph-Journal
ophisticated suds drinkers in New Brunswick, who shelved their wild chugging days for more refined sipping sessions, have caught the eyes of the country’s biggest brewers. Late last month, Labatt launched Keith’s Red exclusively in the Maritime market, an amber ale joining competitors such as Moosehead’s Clancy’s, Molson’s Rickard’s Red as well as products from Sleemans, Picaroons Traditional Ales in Fredericton and the Pump House Brewery in Moncton. At stake is market share in an increasingly competitive niche area, a segment that a Labatt spokesman figures could double in size during the next 12 months. “Very quickly, our desire is to become No. 1 in that market,” says Bill Scollard, marketing manager with Labatt Atlantic. “We think with the Keith’s name and all the quality attributes attached to the Keith’s name that is going to happen, soon rather than later.” It could set up a mini brewery war because as the general population ages, there is a growth trend toward wine and other specialty products. And every brewer wants its fair share. “We will be very brutal in our approach to maintain (market share),” says Strat Kane, director of sales and marketing for Molson Maritimes regarding the launch of Keith’s Red. New Brunswick beer sales hit approximately $190 million in 2003-04 and while some forecasts of the red beer segment suggest a 0.7 per cent share, that still translates into $1.33 million per year in provincial sales. And if it doubles or triples as some suggest, it quickly develops into a $5 million battle for red New Brunswick turf. Robert Noel, a sommelier and prod-
Bartender Scott Reid pours a Rickard's Red at Dolan’s Pub in downtown Fredericton.
uct specialist, says the key growth for beer overall rests with these specialty, import or micro-brewed products. “At the end of the day, I believe people are looking for flavor and beer with more character,” he says. “The wine market people are getting more refined, people drink less but they are drinking better. The same as scotch whiskey, we see more of the premium (products) selling more now. People are looking for quality over quantity in many areas of life and beer is another example.”
Since 2000, beer sales have risen to $189.5 million from $167.8 million at New Brunswick liquor stores, a gain of 12.9 per cent. However, total revenue reported by ANBL during that same period jumped more than $48 million to $321.9 million, a 17.9 per cent increase. Further, beer sales as a percentage of total sales have moved from 61.3 per cent in 2000 to 58.9 per cent in 2004. Sean Dunbar, owner of Picaroon’s ,says the Labatt move will help draw
attention to the segment but at the same time, brings the massive marketing budgets of major players into his company’s prime market. “We see it as good and bad,” says Dunbar. “It clouds the market a little bit. We are trying to push flavor and they are trying to push look. The only thing that worries us is that people who want flavor, taste their beer and say there is not enough of a difference here to justify paying a little bit more money so they
are not moving to that category.” And the flip side, he says, will be an increase in awareness. “They bring customers into our sector,” he says. “They bring some of the flavor people over, give them a natural first step into the category and then that customer is not so reticent to try our beer.” Labatt is not a complete newcomer, as it also has Oland Red, which was available only in draught. However, it has been discontinued. Clancy’s is the Maritime leader in the emerging red or specialty beer segment and Moosehead has stepped up its marketing, including a cross promotion with Sobey’s which offered a $5.00 coupon for a steak inside of Clancy’s packages. Another initiative included a free glass with purchase of a case of Clancy, a move Keith’s Red is using for promotion in July. “With red beer, there is this connection with food and a very positive dining experience,” says Eagles. “The connection to steak, a premium glass with the brand name on it; all these things are very consistent with why people want to buy it.” “The dynamic that you have is that you have more consumers willing to experiment,” says Kane. “That slightly older demographic is looking for a different experience and a different experience in beer, something that is a little more favorable. The target is a little more white collar and it is also consumers who are looking to treat themselves and enjoy a good quality beer that may have some different features and attributes than regular mainstream.” Scollard says that poor weather has played a role in current year-to-date sales, with the industry experiencing a two per cent drop this year. “That is a disappointing number to be honest and we are hoping that Keith’s Red is going to fuel a little bit of interest in the category,” he says.
JULY 17, 2005
INDEPENDENTBUSINESS • 31
‘The best thing since sliced bread’ St. John’s and Corner Brook invest heavily in cruise ships; efforts paying off By Darcy MacRae The Independent
ities on the east and west coasts of the province are making much more money than they’re spending when it comes to the cruise ship industry. St. John’s Mayor Andy Wells says his city budgets $100,000 a year toward attracting cruise lines to the provincial capital. “It’s a big selling job,” Wells tells The Independent. “In 1993 we started our first marketing effort, visiting a number of cruise lines in the United States. It’s been a slow process but over the years we’ve made considerable improvements.” Wells, along with councillor Dennis O’Keefe and various city staff, attend a number of cruise shipping conventions every year — including the world’s largest annual cruise shipping convention in Miami, Fla. Contacts are made and sales pitches are exchanged in an effort to bring ships to St. John’s. “It’s an important component in your overall tourism strategy which is a component in your overall economic development strategy,” Wells says. Corner Brook also sends officials to the Miami conference, with Mayor Priscilla Boutcher usually accompanied by the west coast city’s port manager and a representative from the city’s economic development corporation. Corner Brook spends up to $15,000 annually on attracting cruise ships, money a city official says helps attract some of the largest cruise liners — including the Queen Mary 2, the biggest passenger ship ever built, featuring 15 restaurants and bars, a planetarium, a ballroom, five swimming pools and a casino. “Where we’re located on the west coast of Newfoundland fits in really well with Canada-New England cruises, where St. John’s might be a little more out of the way,” says Nora Mercer, tourism development officer with the economic development corporation. “For itineraries that are only five or six days, it’s easier to come to Corner Brook. I think that’s why Corner Brook gets some of the big ships.” Attracting the Queen Mary 2 is a goal of Wells, who says he will do
‘Coast to coast’ plans From page 29 its many operations in Alberta — their biggest station is Edmonton’s K-Rock. Newfoundland and Labrador makes up around 25 per cent (VOCM is one of NewCap’s top-five stations). Robert says the company now faces the challenge of expansion within Ontario, where it owns a “smattering” of stations. NewCap has yet to penetrate British Columbia, although it just purchased its first station in Manitoba. “Our long-term objective is to be a national company from coast to coast … we’re basically the voice of the community, that’s how we like to see ourselves. We really focus on local stories, local news, anything that’s relevant to the local communities, because that’s really your power base, that’s why people are interested in your product.”
Bottom line From page 29 startup phase — including $275,300 for executive and support services and $724,700 for business attraction. That’s not a significant investment and one which is likely insufficient for the task. However, it is a start and an important one. Our neighbour, Nova Scotia, is targeting $2.5 million additional monies to its Brand Nova Scotia initiative to help spread the word about that province. The bottom line is Newfoundland and Labrador has enormous potential. The Department of Business need only market our strengths: a well-educated, hard-working people; our strength of character; enviable resources; and clean environment to ensure a prosperous future for the province. It will be important that they do so with a coordinated and consolidated effort, working as a team, to make the most of our opportunities.
everything in his power to bring the vessel to St. John’s. “We’re working on the Queen Mary. She’s coming this way in the fall and we’re trying to get her here,” he says. Along with attending cruise shipping conventions, both cities work closely with the Cruise Ship Association of Newfoundland and Labrador and work to produce brochures and letters outlining the cities’ newest attractions. Mercer maintains that these simple procedures are effective methods of attracting vessels to the province. “If there’s anything new in terms of a shore excursion, we’ll try to keep our contacts with the cruise lines up to date,” Mercer says. “For example, we’re planning to develop the Captain Cooke site (a look out offering a complete view of Corner Brook) out here, so once that is complete we’ll let them know we’ve further enhanced our product.” Both Wells and Mercer say their cities have solid reputations with the major cruise lines, helping them attract ships each spring, summer and fall. As a result, the industry is worth around $1.5 million annually in St. John’s and close to $1 million in Corner Brook. Considering the difference between profit and investment, the cruise ship industry is one Wells says greatly benefits the province. “If you go along Water Street after a cruise ship has been in and talk to some of the merchants, they say it’s the best thing since sliced bread,” the mayor assures. firstname.lastname@example.org
Assistant deputy minister of aquaculture Brian Meaney.
Paul Daly/The Independent
Funding fish farms By Alisha Morrissey The Independent
he provincial government has received a number of applications for its aquaculture loanguarantee program, but has yet to approve a single loan, officials say. Brian Meaney, the province’s assistant deputy minister of aquaculture, says under the program fin fish farmers can apply for an 80 per cent guarantee on working capital, mostly for feed and labour costs. The program was announced in November and applications were accepted immediately, but Meaney wouldn’t say how many applications have been received to date. “Given the size of the industry … you could probably figure out who (applied), so it’s private business information,” Meaney tells The Independent. He says there’s no specific amount of money in the pot and the guarantees are based on a company’s business plan. Generally, a fish farming operation with one million fish has
annual costs of between $7 million and $10 million. Under the program, Meaney says the banks receive an assurance of payments and are more willing to provide a loan, while the aquaculture company can build a nearly risk-free business relationship with the bank. Similar programs are available in Nova Scotia and New Brunswick. The Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency also offers funding to aquaculturists through its business development programs. Meantime, the federal government recently approved $20 million in aid for salmon farmers in New Brunswick who lost stocks due to disease. In a press release, provincial Fisheries Minister Trevor Taylor called the move an unfair advantage. “We are extremely concerned that the federal approach to this issue is different than the approach to the cattle industry. Like land-based farmers, the salmonid industry has to contend with market conditions and losses caused by disease and adverse weather,” Taylor said. “Salmonid growers
in Newfoundland and Labrador are facing all of the same issues, without having access to federal support to rise above them, unlike their counterparts in New Brunswick.” Taylor called on the federal government to implement all recommendations of an aquaculture task force, including the implementation of a framework agreement focusing on opportunities for farmers, sustainability and industry growth. Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia and New Brunswick participated in the task force, which released the report in April. More than 4,000 tonnes of farmed fish were produced in Newfoundland and Labrador last year. John Phyne, a professor of sociology at St. Francis Xavier University, says provincial and federal money must be made available to fish farmers. He also suggests financing be made available for processors to add value to the product and in the communities the aquaculture projects are started in.
32 • INDEPENDENT BUSINESS
JULY 17, 2005
Cellphones: liabilities and lawsuits A flurry of U.S. lawsuits is putting cellphone use under the microscope; insurance industry looks on anxiously By Tyler Hamilton and Robert Cribb Torstar wire service
flurry of U.S. lawsuits alleging harmful health effects from cellphones is making it more difficult for the wireless industry to insure itself, says a top insurance lawyer. Mark Kolman, an insurance lawyer with Washington, D.C.-based Dickstein Shapiro Morin & Oshinky LLP, says insurance companies are quickly adapting to a perceived increase in legal risks as cellphone service providers and manufacturers attempt to renew their general liability policies. “My understanding from several of my clients and other sources is that the insurance companies have been more insistent on inserting exclusions in the policies … covering any claims related to electromagnetic force or radiation,” says Kolman, who has represented cellphone manufacturers such as Audiovox and Kyocera, and wireless service providers, such as AT&T Wireless, in cases where insurance providers have already tried wiggling out of their contractual “duty to defend.” MORE SCIENCE “The insurance companies want to make sure they’re not writing a risk that’s going to kill them.” The scare over potential cellphone health effects first made headlines in 1993 when CNN’s Larry King interviewed a man who claimed his wife had died of a brain tumour caused by her cellphone. Since then, the wireless industry has been hit with dozens of related lawsuits. None have proven successful over the past decade, but lawyers taking on these cases say their chances of legal success are growing by the year as scientific studies build a gradually stronger argument to support their clients’ claims. And the insurance industry is watching with keen interest, anxious to get out of the way in case the early legal ripples turn into a tsunami of expensive litigation. “The science has caught up,” says attorney Joanne Suder, a partner at the Suder Law Firm in Baltimore. Suder was counsel for Dr. Christopher Newman, a Maryland neu-
Some scientists wonder about damage cellphones may cause to youths. From left, Waleed Ahmed, Mihyar Al-Ghafari and Ali Shirzad. Charla Jones/Toronto Star
rologist who alleged in 2000 that the Motorola cellphone he used was responsible for his brain cancer. The high-profile case was thrown out after a judge ruled the evidence unreliable. Suder says she’s working on a new wave of similar suits and the cases today are much stronger. “The recent studies are very encouraging,” she says. “The science has proven what we expected to see.” The threat of such suits, combined with the constant flow of new scientific studies, has been enough for at least one major Canadian cellphone provider, Bell Mobility, to acknowledge the business risks in a recent financial report. “Actual or perceived health risks of wireless communications devices could result in fewer new network subscribers, lower network usage per subscriber, higher churn rates, product liability lawsuits or less outside financing available to the wireless communica-
tions industry,” parent company Bell Canada states in its latest annual report. A number of major insurance providers who offer general liability insurance to North America’s cellphone industry either did not return calls or declined comment. Wireless industry
“I do believe cellphones are not good for you, and I personally will never use one again, ever.” Dave Hook officials in Canada also declined comment, but point out there have been no lawsuits filed in this country against cellphone makers or service providers. It’s not that it hasn’t crossed anyone’s mind. Dave Hook, a 33-year-old stand-
up comedian from Waterloo, began looking for legal representation in 2003 after he was diagnosed with a fastgrowing brain tumour. He found the coincidences too compelling: two months after he purchased his first cellphone he began feeling a weird sensation in his left foot that spread to his left hand. This was followed by seizures. It turned out Hook had a tumour located where he held his cellphone to his head. The tumour seemed to stop growing after he quit using the device. “I do believe cellphones are not good for you, and I personally will never use one again, ever,” says Hook, who decided in the end it was better to focus on his health than take his fight to the courtroom. South of the border the story is much different. Litigation is heating up, often an early warning of legal trouble ahead in Canada. In March, a U.S. federal appeals
court revived four controversial classaction lawsuits — called the “headset” cases — that claim the cellphone industry has engaged in fraud and civil conspiracy by misrepresenting the safety of their wireless phones. The class-action plaintiffs aren’t suffering health effects from cellphones and make no financial claim for personal damages. Instead, their suits are aimed at forcing cellphone companies to supply headsets with all devices, or at the very least to reimburse customers who have already purchased headsets separately. The industry’s defence is that all cellphones comply with federal radiation emission standards and, for this reason, are not “unreasonably dangerous.” But a three-judge panel, arguing that the federal standard is only one factor in assessing safety, sent the cases back to their respective state courts for trial. No decision on the merits of the claim has been made. The U.S. Supreme Court is reviewing that decision. Jeffrey Morganroth, whose Michigan law firm is representing six brain cancer victims in another set of cases filed in the District of Columbia, says he has analyzed the earlier Newman case and is confident he can get past some of the pitfalls that led to its dismissal. His cases seek $150 million (U.S.) in damages for each client and were filed in 2001 and 2002. They’ve been caught up in “procedural wrangling” ever since. The association representing the U.S. cell industry would not comment on the suit, but some companies named in the suit have dismissed the allegations as having no credible scientific basis. Kolman says some insurance companies have experimented with the idea of having separate liability policies just for the cellphone health issue, similar to policies designed specifically for environmental pollution cases in the 1970s. “But then people realized, by the mid-to-late 1980s, that pollution was such a huge problem that the insurance companies didn’t want to sell that insurance anymore,” says Kolman. “I think that may be going on here. The insurance companies are trying to decide whether they want to sell insurance products to companies selling mobile phones.”
Travellers getting more bang for their buck Canada’s exchange rate enjoying its best July since 1992; 30 per cent rise in three years a huge help, tour operator says By Dana Flavelle and Emily Chung Torstar wire service
he Canadian dollar is finally having a good summer, and that means Lila McIndo will be even more pampered during her getaway in Las Vegas. McIndo and four girlfriends are flying off tomorrow to stay at the Luxor Hotel, and the recent surge in the loonie means poolside cabana service all around. In fact, the currency is having its best July since 1992. “I tend to spend a bit more if the dollar is better because in my head I’m
always converting everything,” says McIndo, 49. “It’s always nice to save money.” The cabana service, which comes with a personal attendant, costs $125 (U.S.) a day — not much of a stretch split five ways, she says. SUMMER RUT It’s even easier to splurge now that the exchange rate has broken out of what has become a summer rut. The loonie has gained more than four per cent since mid-May, closing yesterday at 82.20 cents (U.S.), up 0.19 of a cent, its fourth consecutive increase. That cabana treat will be nearly 30 per cent
cheaper now than three years ago, thanks to the hard-charging dollar. “That’s been a huge help in terms of people travelling,” says Robert Van Kleek, owner of Pathway Tours, which specializes in bus tours targeted at seniors. “They’re not looking at the dollar being a deterrent. It has been for quite a few years.” “We’re certainly putting more people in (the U.S.) than we were last summer,” agrees Sean Shannon, managing director of custom travel website Expedia.ca. Oleg Volochkov, general manager of Select Travelsphere, says the Canadian dollar has increased relative to currencies other than the U.S. dollar, also encouraging travel to overseas destinations Though the currency took off at the start of 2003, it slumped in both the summer of 2003 and 2004, recovering shortly after children were back in school. When it comes to Canadians travel-
ling to the U.S. every cent in the exchange rate matters. According to estimates by the Canadian Tourism Research Institute, historically if the loonie rises by 10 per cent, the number of travellers heading to the U.S. increases by 13 per cent. SAFETY CONCERN “After 9-11 it diverged a little bit,” says Greg Hermus, associate director of the group, a division of the Conference Board of Canada. Concerns about safety likely mean the sensitivity to the exchange rate is a little lower, Hermus says. “The U.S. wasn’t the same destination it once was.” While the strong Canadian dollar will be luring travellers southward, Americans are far less sensitive to currency fluctuations, he adds. Only 35 per cent of Americans recently surveyed had a good idea what the Canada-U.S. exchange rate is, Hermus says.
“It is a little better along the border states because there is more awareness.” Canadians, on the other hand, are certainly aware of the loonie’s health. Data from Statistics Canada show 2.46 million Canadians took multi-night car trips to the U.S. in June, July and August last year, up 3.4 per cent from the previous year. “I think the dollar is hugely responsible for their choices,” says Van Kleek. He adds New York City has started to catch on. “The hotels have realized that there’s a big demand and their rates have gone up. But I think that the dollar having strength has offset that.” In addition to security concerns, a poll of travel intentions suggested politics may also partly explain why the increase hasn’t been bigger, says Hermus, citing the example of the U.S. handling of Canada’s mad cow incident. “Albertans had a problem with how they were being treated.”
P.E.I. hoping WestJet extends service By Andrew Fhilips Telegraph-Journal
inal numbers haven’t yet been tallied to see if Charlottetown’s WestJet gain has been Moncton’s loss this summer. But Prince Edward Islanders hope the country’s biggest discount airline extends its seasonal service and continues flying from Charlottetown into the new year. “It’s going very, very well,” Charlottetown Airport Authority general manager Mike Campbell says. “The loads have been very agreeable.” Campbell says he imagines passengers who normally would have travelled to Moncton to board a WestJet, Toronto-bound flight have been using the service this summer from his facility. “It’s tough for me to tell (for sure) because we don’t do demographic (studies), but there’s no need to cross
the bridge to go to Moncton,” he says. WestJet spokeswoman Jill Bentley says the airline doesn’t comment on specific routes or compare one destination versus another.
To attract WestJet, the PEI government provided the airline with a $300,000 revenue guarantee But Greater Moncton International Airport president and chief executive officer Rob Robichaud says his facility’s numbers should continue to be strong this month, given that nearly 60 Halifax-bound flights that have been diverted there in recent weeks. “Passengers numbers are going to be
up in July,” Robichaud said. To attract WestJet, the PEI government provided the Calgary-based airline with a $300,000 revenue guarantee to offer summer service between Charlottetown and Toronto. “But the way it’s going now, there likely won’t be any payout,” Campbell says. Campbell says there are hopes the airline will consider extending the service, which began June 25 and is slated to end Sept. 15, into the fall months and, perhaps, make Charlottetown a permanent destination. Charlottetown has also welcomed daily Northwest Airlines flight from Detroit this summer. Campbell said a number of Asian flights connect in Detroit that bring tourists to the island. “But it’s not just Asian or Japanese tourists, we’re getting a lot of U.S. visitors as well,” he says. “Detroit’s a major hub for Northwest.”
JULY 17, 2005
INDEPENDENT SPECIAL SECTION • 33
34 • INDEPENDENT SPECIAL SECTION
JULY 17, 2005
JULY 17, 2005
INDEPENDENTSPORTS • 35
WEEKLY DIVERSIONS ACROSS 1 Musical Ride org. 5 Vend 9 Earth’s neighbour 13 Superior, e.g. 17 Love god 18 Shivering fit 19 Salt’s cry 20 Norway’s patron saint 21 Immortal 23 Give fresh vigour to 25 Possess 26 Kiln 27 Thailand, once 28 Harder to find 29 ___ du jour 30 First Canadian woman to top Everest 31 Caprine god 32 Baby food developed in Canada 35 Green Gables prov. 36 Boat in a flood 37 It’s in one year and out the other 40 Armchair traveller’s reference 41 Person one may legitimately go after 44 Method 45 One of a pride 46 B.C. painter, landlady 47 The Tragically ___ 48 First Black world boxing champion 49 Conceit 50 The ref drops it 51 Dry flax
52 Dry (wine) 53 Bring in from another country 55 Prov. seven times as big as U.K. 56 Sask. sculptor of cows 59 Globe 60 Canadian scientist who identified the T-Cell receptor: Tak ___ 61 Whimsically comical 62 Regatta blade 64 Breakheart ___, Nfld. 67 Failure 68 A MacNeil 69 Capital of Fiji 70 Farm asset 71 Alta. city with giant teepee: ___ Hat 73 First Quebec woman in House of Commons 74 Not rarely (poet.) 75 Early fur trading co. 76 Ad ___ committee 77 Saturday in Ste. AdËle 78 Tibetan gazelle 79 Be up against 81 Japanese sandal 82 Peter Robertson’s 1908 invention 85 Math subj. 86 Stand 87 Fleur de ___ 90 Cat with racoon-like markings (2 wds.) 92 Second-rate 94 Citrus hybrid 95 Cross-dressing
96 Centre point 97 All: prefix 98 Phone starter? 99 Novice 100 Hebrew zither 101 Thing, e.g. DOWN 1 Give a facelift to 2 Ship’s company 3 Wordless complaint 4 Tsawwassen time 5 Arabic “peace” 6 Discharge 7 Desire 8 French article (pl.) 9 A Lemieux 10 Leading 11 Wander 12 With: prefix 13 Harpist Judy 14 Wing-like 15 A McGarrigle 16 Of all time 22 ___-bolus 24 Baghdad’s country 27 Evening in Paris 29 Scheme 30 Golfer Mike 31 Before: prefix 32 Lighten up? 33 Inuit hooded shirt worn under parka 34 Flower 35 Vancouver’s Stanley ___ 36 Elec. unit 37 Coyote cousin
38 Fuss 39 Lair 41 Truth 42 Clarified butter 43 Help 44 Flaky mineral 46 Rein in 48 Resist openly 50 Halifax or St. John’s 51 Hamlet 150 km N of Inuvik 52 Mens ___ in corpore sano 54 Enough water for a duck 55 Islamic judge 56 Destiny 57 Red in Rimouski 58 A Suzuki 60 “Here’s ___ in your eye!” 61 White metallic element 63 Royal in a sari 64 Arafat’s org. 65 Boor 66 Bank payment: abbr. 67 Nov. follower 68 Public disturbance 69 Circle start 71 Business deg. 72 Train sound 73 Compiler of oral histories of Canada: ___ Broadfoot 75 “Mr. Hockey” 77 Kind of hose 78 Canadian film award
79 Loud 80 Game with cards and stampers 81 Meditation hall
82 Obscenity 83 Prison 84 Small rivulet 85 Conservative
WEEKLY STARS ARIES - MAR 21/APR 20
This week you will be more likely to go on an adventure. It won't be anything elaborate, just a short journey to someplace you've always wanted to go before. TAURUS - APR 21/MAY 21
This is a great week to expose yourself to other points of view, Taurus. Rather than clashing with people who have other opinions, listen respectfully to what they have to say. GEMINI - MAY 22/JUN 21
Now's the chance for your individuality to really shine, Gemini. Try showing off the qualities that make you different and unique, like sharing hobbies and collections. CANCER - JUN 22/JUL 22
Take time for both social activities and alone time, Cancer. This week you'll have these dual needs. Fortunately you can master both
without any trouble. LEO - JUL 23/AUG 23
Leo, this week you'll immerse yourself in large crowds of people. Whether you attend a party or just mingle at a crowded mall or restaurant, feed off the energy. VIRGO - AUG 24/SEPT 22
This week, your leadership skills are really put to the test, Virgo. You'll find yourself in situations where you must take the primary role. Enjoy the spotlight. LIBRA - SEPT 23/OCT 23
Don't overanalyze decisions, Libra. Make up your mind already. Trust that your first instinct is really the right way to go. You'll be pleasantly surprised at the results. SCORPIO - OCT 24/NOV 22
It's wise if you avoid making financial decisions this week, Scorpio. That's because you've hit a road
86 Short lives? 87 Wheels of fortune? 88 First Nation of Quebec
89 Pudding pellicle 91 Summer time in Man. 92 Cellular letters 93 Actor, writer McKellar
POET’S CORNER bump in your financial savvy. You'll get back on track soon.
you head to work or deal with your private life.
SAGITTARIUS - NOV 23/DEC 21
You'll want to spend more time with someone you find special, Sagittarius. Regardless of how busy your schedule is, set aside a few hours for romance. CAPRICORN - DEC 22/JAN 20
There's no better time to focus on your health, Capricorn. Schedule that routine physical, join a gym or start to eat better. You'll find that the results will be worth it all. AQUARIUS - JAN 21/FEB 18
JULY 16 Corey Feldman, actor JULY 17 David Hasselhoff, actor JULY 18 Vin Diesel, actor JULY 19 Langston Clark, rapper
This week, the language of love is in full force. Use the opportunity to rekindle a relationship with someone special. Watch the sparks fly as you initiate communication.
JULY 20 Gisele Bundchen, model
PISCES - FEB 19/MAR 20
JULY 22 John Leguizamo
Simplicity is the key to success this week, Pisces. Keep this in mind as
JULY 21 Josh Hartnett, actor
IF I COULD SAIL MY MIND Oh, if I could sail my mind Up to your door And take you on a passage, I’d take you to Spain To warm sunny beaches And the farthest reaches Of thought, Beyond the starry main. I’d think you to Scandinavia And hide you in fiords, And if you wished for more, I’d never take you back to shore, But like a pirate Encircle you with gold and treasure And sail on to wherever Seas are green, where halos of sun, Will be ours forever. From the 1985 book Beginnings by Robert Burt of Topsail.
36 • INDEPENDENTSPORTS
JULY 17, 2005
Dickenson’s back on top Veteran Lions QB regains No. 1 job from Printers By Daniel Girard Torstar wire service
Pittsburgh Pirates' Jason Bay of Canada reacts to hitting his tenth out, eliminating him from the Home Run Derby, in the first round at the 76th Major League Baseball All-Star Game In Detroit, Michigan, July 11. Bay will play for Canada at the 2006 World Baseball Classic. REUTERS/ Ray Stubblebine
Tournament no guaranteed hit By Richard Griffin Torstar wire service
here remain numerous stumbling blocks before a proposed World Baseball Classic becomes the sporting equivalent of soccer’s World Cup. But 14 countries had enough confidence to send a representative of their federations all the way to Motown for the official unveiling of details last week. While Major League Baseball commissioner Bud Selig says the tournament was “an unprecedented and historical international event,” players’ union chief Don Fehr was less over the top. Here, in a nutshell, is the tournament format. Four pools of four teams will play a round-robin format, March 3-11, 2006. The top two teams from each pool advance to round two where the remaining eight teams play a roundrobin format to narrow the field to a final four. The semifinals and finals are March18-20 in Arizona. Canada is in a North American pool with the U.S., Mexico and South Africa. Now, unless South Africa has been playing possum like the ‘72 Soviet hockey team, there are three games that won’t draw much attention. Other doormats include China, the Netherlands (they claim Curacao native and Braves slugger Andruw Jones) and Italy. “If the Latin players have been able
to cause such an impact, I don’t see a reason why other regions of the world can’t be able to do that,” Giants’ manager Felipe Alou, the first Dominican born player and manager, says. “A region of the Caribbean is not Godgiven. Parts of South America are not God-given. There is no reason why other regions cannot develop in the same way.” Some of the real problems working against the World Baseball Classic actually taking place include the fact that the games are only eight months away and baseball has yet to receive word from either Cuba or Japan that they are participants. Neither country was represented at yesterday’s press conference. The Japanese are in the midst of contract negotiations with their players, while the Cubans have concerns about money, security and a tenuous relationship with the U.S. government. Football fans remember how slow the Super Bowl was to catch on. The first NFL world championship was played in Pasadena in 1967, in front of a crowd of less than 30,000. If Team U.S.A. does not make the championship game of WBC ‘06, then it could end up being a one-year wonder. Consider, also, the fierce competition for TV viewers and media coverage. Baseball will be going head-tohead with March Madness, the NCAA basketball tournament in round one and for the two semifinal games, also
on the weekend. Although, in looking at the schedule, which includes a block of games Monday through Wednesday, plus the championship on Monday night, baseball has clearly thought of the ratings battle. Blue Jays president Paul Godfrey was on an ownership committee to make recommendations. Godfrey, who believes 100 per cent that the project is a go, explained that the tournament will take place again in 2009 and then every four years. The idea is to stay away from the Winter and Summer Olympics and soccer’s World Cup. Godfrey believes it will be a boon for baseball in Canada, especially if this country is able to medal. “This is a way of launching baseball to a greater height,” Godfrey says. “It could grow to be bigger than the World Series. When baseball players in Canada feel they can compete on an international basis and have the best players exposed internationally, all on one team, it will electrify interest in the sport. This tournament will be a great catalyst in exposing young people to go the baseball route if they have that talent. There’s great enthusiasm and great pride to putting on the Canadian uniform and playing in an international event.” There were 18 Canadian-born majorleaguers on opening day rosters. That ranks sixth, internationally, behind the U.S., the Dominican Republic, Venezuela, Puerto Rico and Mexico.
ave Dickenson has been around long enough to know a golden rule of professional football: winning trumps controversy every time. The B.C. Lions quarterback, coming off an injury-limited, five-start season, has regained the No. 1 job on a team that also includes Casey Printers, who last year replaced Dickenson and was named the CFL’s most outstanding player. Printers, who has been battling shoulder problems, hopes to see some game action soon. But Dickenson, 32 years old and in his eighth CFL season, has been impressive in leading the Lions to a good start, making it easy for coach Wally Buono to keep him running the offence. “With the quarterback controversy thing, if you just do your job and the team wins, then you feel comfortable with your security,” Dickenson says. “That’s the only thing important in football: winning,” adds Dickenson, who was backup to Jeff Garcia when the Calgary Stampeders won the 1998 Grey Cup. “If you win, obviously it keeps things status quo, as long as you’re doing your job.” Dickenson has done his job so far this season. In the Lions’ first game, a 27-20 victory over the Argos at the Rogers Centre, he was 22 of 28 for 260 yards and a touchdown pass, claiming the CFL’s offensive player of the week honour along the way. He followed that up with a 22-for-30 performance for 237 yards, two touchdown passes and an interception in a 37-29 win over the visiting Ottawa Renegades. “I feel like we needed to win games early,” Dickenson says. “I think that’s the key.
“And I needed to finish some games, play four quarters, show people my health is fine.” Dickenson’s teammates say it’s clear he worked hard in the off-season to get himself ready for this year in hopes of leading the Lions back to the Grey Cup, which will be held in Vancouver in November. They lost to Toronto 2719 last year on a day when the B.C. quarterback controversy peaked as Dickenson — who had replaced an injured Printers in the second half of the Western final to lead the Lions to victory — played the entire game. While there was a lot of secondguessing after Printers failed to get into that game, there’s no doubt everyone sees this Lions team as Dickenson’s. “When he’s healthy and playing well, he’s the best there is,” says slotback Geroy Simon, who has 10 catches for 133 yards and two touchdowns in the season’s first two games. “We need Dave to be healthy and out there playing because when he’s at his best he’s pretty much unstoppable.” Receiver Ryan Thelwell, who leads the Lions with 13 catches for 160 yards, says Dickenson’s ability and experience is infectious to his teammates. “He’s our leader out there,” Thelwell says. “He’s a coach on the field, smart. You need a guy like that out there. “You just feel comfortable knowing that he’s back there.” Even though he’s off to a strong start, Dickenson has also been around long enough to know another CFL golden rule: wins in the summer are fine, but it’s the fall that really matters. “We just know we’ve got to be ready each week and not look too far ahead or we’ll get beat,” he says. “What you want is to be playing well and have confidence in the guys and be able to take that late into the year and on into the playoffs.”
Paul Daly/The Independent
Status quo at the CBC
here will be at least one new face on Hockey Night In Canada next fall, but the CBC intends to have most of the familiar voices back. CBC Sports executive director Nancy Lee says contract negotiations are continuing with on-air staff, including Harry Neale and Newfoundland’s Bob Cole. Don Cherry signed a oneyear contract late last week. “Our intention is to have everybody back,” she says. That doesn’t include Chris Cuthbert,
who was let go last winter when the NHL season was cancelled. He landed at TSN. Lee says no decision has been made on a replacement for Cuthbert, but Mark Lee is the leading candidate. Cherry told Canadian Press yesterday that he was looking forward to returning to the studio. “After a year, I got so much to say I can hardly wait to hear myself,” he says. — Torstar wire service
‘Don’t be afraid of Tourette’s’ By Mary Ormsby Torstar wire service
lliotte Friedman appears to be shivering, even on the steamiest summer day. The CBC sports broadcaster will intertwine his fingers while a shudder — for just a second or two — ripples up his stiffened arms and across his shoulders. But it’s not a shiver. It’s another tamed Tourette’s tremour. “I’m actually lucky since I don’t have to take any medication for my Tourette’s,’’ says the 34-year-old Friedman, who was first diagnosed with the disorder while a University of Western Ontario student. “We know so much more now about Tourette’s than we did 25 years ago when I was a kid ... so it’s a tremendous advantage for kids to know exactly what they have. People will be more understanding once they know someone has Tourette’s.” Even though Friedman has a mild case of the disorder, it didn’t prevent his feelings from being hurt when school-yard taunters would yell: “What are you, retarded?” whenever the
Toronto native’s hands shook. The shaking was triggered by situations that caused excitement or required high energy — such as watching or participating in sports. Those triggers still apply and as a sports journalist, Friedman says he must concentrate to stave off attacks while holding a microphone on camera. “I have to be very, very careful when I’m doing Hockey Night in Canada, or when I’m on the radio with Bob (McCown, host of Prime Time Sports on the FAN 590),’” says Friedman, whose four sisters are unaffected by Tourette’s. “Sometimes Bob will crack a joke and I lose focus and (a tremour can hit).” Friedman, who once had a heartfelt chat with retired major-league baseball player and Tourette’s sufferer Jim Eisenreich, says it’s important for children to understand “it’s not your fault” if they have the disorder. “Kids should know it’s no big deal and you can overcome it and be successful in life at anything you want to do,” Friedman says. “And I’d say to parents ‘Don’t run away from it, don’t be afraid of it.’”
JULY 17, 2005
INDEPENDENTSPORTS • 37
Repairing damage to game critical task By Ken Campbell Torstar wire service
had Cal Ripken’s streak and (Sammy) Sosa, (Mark) McGwire and (Barry) Bonds and the Yankees dynasty returning. It strikes me that if you look at the pattern that was established, at best hockey will do what baseball did and that’s a best-case scenario.” The NHL will try to get fans back, particularly in the U.S., with an aggressive marketing strategy in which the league intends to re-brand itself and offer a better on-ice product with rules that will finally clamp down on obstruction and allow stars the room they need, smaller goalie equipment and more teams in the Stanley Cup playoffs. Teams all over the league have slashed ticket prices and will be making an effort to be more fan friendly. The teams have an enormous amount of heavy lifting that needs to be done between now and when next season opens, likely Oct. 5. Many teams are in single digits in terms of the number of players under contract for next season and will probably only have the month of August to build their rosters.
fter spending 301 days as bitter rivals, the NHL and its players face the challenge of restoring their relationship and working to ensure their long-term survival. With the two sides finally coming to terms on a collective bargaining agreement last week, they will embark on an uncertain future that does not include a legitimate television deal in the United States or any real indication of how fans will react to the league becoming the first in pro sports history to wipe out an entire season with a labour dispute. ‘WHOLE NEW WORLD’ “It’s a whole new world out there,” says veteran Maple Leafs winger Tie Domi, who will almost certainly take home less than half of the $1.9 million (all figures U.S.) he would have earned had the season not been wiped out. It will indeed be a new world for the league’s 700 players, in the form of smaller salaries for those who are free agents and a 24 per cent rollback for those who are under contract. And the less-than-encouraging news for players who have made concessions on almost every aspect of the deal is that they might not even be close to finished on what they have to give back. An integral part of the contract requires each player to place a portion of his salary — believed to be 15 per cent — in escrow in the event that league revenues fall short of the $1.8 billion projected by both sides in the first year of the deal. Considering that revenues were $2.1 billion in 2003-04, that might be a wildly optimistic projection, but it also takes into account that team owners will have to come totally clean on all their revenues as part of the agreement. National Basketball Association players have had a 10 per cent escrow requirement the past four years and have lost that income in each of those years. At least one sports business specialist thinks the $1.8 billion projection is far too optimistic. Andrew Zimbalist, a sports marketing expert from Smith College in Northampton, Mass., thinks the league’s revenues will be more along the lines of $1.4 billion to $1.5 billion. “This is going to be a very long rebuilding process,” Zimbalist says. “If you compare it to baseball, 11 years later they’re still not back at where they were when the season was cancelled in 1994. “This is despite the fact it is the national pastime, there are about a dozen new stadiums, they
National Hockey League Players Association executive director Bob Goodenow departs NHL headquarters in New York, July 21, 2004 after talks with league commissioner Gary Bettman about the collective bargaining agreement and prospects for a 2004-05 season. The two sides agreed on a tentative deal last week. REUTERS/Jeff Zelevansky
Virtual lockout on ice Puck set to drop on NHL video game Developers wait on new rules, rosters By Jordan Heath-Rawlings Torstar wire service
“There’s no reason to change them,” he says. “I don’t think Markus Naslund’s ability went down because idney Crosby has dominated the he didn’t play in the NHL for a year.” junior hockey game like few But the game will include a player before him. But where does he editor feature, Littman says, so that “if rank in the video world, skating against somebody wants to say, ‘I think Todd virtual Peter Forsbergs and Jarome Bertuzzi has lost a step, I’m going to Iginlas? Does he rate a 79 out of 100, knock his speed down five points,’ or an 87? How durable should his pix- then they can do that.” ilated teenage frame be when standing Game developers at Sony and EA — up to punishing hits from a digital as well as at 2K sports (NHL 2K6) and Chris Pronger? And which jersey will Sports Interactive (Eastside Hockey he wear when he finally makes his Manager) — were in constant contact NHL video game with both the NHL and debut? its players’ union and Fortunately, developwere getting updates on “There’s going to er EA Sports won’t the status of negotiahave to figure out how tions as well as news of be so much roster Crosby stacks up which rule changes movement that we’ll might be included when against the veterans until after he plays his the games resume this have to race first National Hockey fall. League game. Until Sega has already to keep up to date.” then, the company can’t dropped the size of include the young gun goalie equipment in its David Littman in its upcoming NHL game, and Littman said 06 title, set to hit stores that EA is “working in September. closely with (the NHL), and they’ve But Crosby’s absence is one of only given us any information they have as a few things the Vancouver based quickly as they get it.” developer knows for sure about this But even the NHL doesn’t know for year’s hockey title. A year without sure what its teams will look like next NHL hockey has left EA Sports — and year. developers of other NHL video games Vincent Lecavalier is the NHL 06 — devoid of stats from last season to cover athlete, though he’s a restricted use in compiling player ratings, not free agent and there’s a chance he knowing what the actual rules of the won’t be sporting his Tampa Bay game will be when it does return, and Lightning uniform when the game is with some seriously messy rosters as a released. large percentage of the league’s players “There’s going to be so much roster are without contracts. movement that we’ll have to race to At EA Sports’ Vancouver offices, keep up to date,” Littman says. David Littman and his team of proEven if Crosby is drafted No.1 as grammers and designers have done just expected and signs with his team about all they can to tweak the on-ice immediately, gamers won’t be able to game play of NHL 06 to include new play as the latest Next One. features such as the skill stick and deke “(Crosby’s) not in the game now,” control. Littman says. “He’ll have to play an “We’ve pretty much finished up the NHL game before any company can actual game,” Littman says. “Our main put him into a video game.” thing right now is trying to get as However, those who will play the updated as possible with all the title on Xbox, Playstation 2 or PC will changes going on.” quickly be able to download updated While the rosters will need to be rosters from the Internet that include updated and rule changes incorporated, Crosby, Littman says. “As soon as he one aspect Littman is not stressing plays his first game, boom! We can put over is changing the skill ratings for him into our game right away through individual players. downloads,” Littman says.
DAUNTING TASK Getting under an expected salary cap of $39 million will be a daunting task for wealthy teams such as the Leafs, Philadelphia Flyers and Detroit Red Wings, while getting their payrolls up to the projected floor of $22 million will pose a challenge for others. “It will take some time, not just for us,” Leafs GM John Ferguson says. “Everyone has to get a real good feel for what the new rules may be and how they’re going to impact clubs and player contracts.” The deal, which is highlighted by the salary cap, limits on entry-level salaries, revenue sharing and the rollback on existing contracts, has been viewed as an enormous victory for the owners, who went into the process insisting they needed some form of cost certainty in order to survive. “We were fighting a losing battle the whole way,” Philadelphia centre Jeremy Roenick says, who could see the remaining $4.9 million on his contract bought out by the Flyers. Many players who missed a full season of the game they love, along with a year of pay, were clearly relieved by yesterday’s developments. Executives were left to wonder how the sport will recover. “At the end of the day, everybody lost,” Wayne Gretzky says. “We almost crippled our industry.”
Whitt says he saw it coming By Geoff Baker Torstar wire service
he man who led Canada’s Olympic baseball team last summer isn’t surprised the sport will be dropped from the Games. Toronto Blue Jays bench coach Ernie Whitt, who managed Canada to a fourth-place finish at Athens, was expecting the recent decision ever since Olympic organizers gave Major League Baseball an ultimatum about freeing up professionals to play. “I was disappointed but not totally surprised because we’d heard rumblings about it last year in Athens,” Solution for crossword on page 18
Whitt says. “Most of the (Olympic) committee is European and they were kind of holding the hammer over Major League Baseball, saying if they didn’t release players to come and play in the Olympics, then they were going to pull the plug on it. “And as we know, Major League Baseball is not going to allow the players to go in mid-season.” NO CONNECTION Whitt doesn’t feel that the United States failing to qualify for Athens had anything to do with the move. “We were drawing just as many people as a lot of the other sports,”
Whitt says. “But again, I guess that when you kind of make a threat or a push and Major League Baseball just thumbs their nose at them ... they pulled the plug on it.” Whitt says he doubts the decision will dissuade young players from chasing a baseball dream. When he was growing up, he says, the dream was to play big-league ball, not to don national team colours. “The Olympics should be for the amateurs anyway,” he says. “So let’s just take away all the professional athletes and give it back to amateur sports and create our own World Cup. Which we’re going to try to do.”
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38 • INDEPENDENTSPORTS
JULY 17, 2005
Taking the plunge No off-season for Aquarena’s Flite Diving Club, as divers prepare for upcoming Canada Games By Darcy MacRae The Independent
to the water in Regina, each with visions of claiming a medal for Newfoundland and Labrador. As excitteve Carroll is aware diving is ed as Carroll is to see how the group not considered a rough-and-tum- performs, he has a feeling they will ble sport. But he also knows that make more noise at the 2009 Canada colourful swimsuits and a few splashes Games in Prince Edward Island. aren’t a fair indication of what divers “The unique thing about this team is go through. five of the six are young enough to be “There’s a fear factor. You’re spin- eligible for the next Canada Games ning and twisting and trying not to kill (16-year-old Stanley is the exception),” yourself while doing so. The craziness he says. “I’m really excited about how creates a lot of the fun,” Carroll tells good they’re going to be at the next The Independent. Canada Games.” Carol and his wife Mary coach the During a recent Flite team practice, Flite Diving Club out of the Aquarena divers practiced their routines under the in St. John’s. Their club has more than watchful eye of Carroll. They walked 40 full-time members with up to 30 slowly to the end of the diving board, kids taking part in summer camp class- took a quick look down at the water es. He and Mary are former divers before gaining their composure and themselves — Steve won a gold medal executing complicated manoeuvres, at the 1985 Canada Games while Mary, including back flips and mid-air summa Thunder Bay, Ont. native, represented ersaults. The divers then quickly exited Canada at the 1992 Summer Olympics the water and watched a tape-delay in Spain, finishing eighth — and are video of their performances with happy to pass along Carroll, who was their knowledge. quick to point out “The sport takes a what they did well and lot of strength and areas to improve. “This sport has a flexibility,” Carroll As difficult as it is very technical side says. “If you come to master the athletic from gymnastics into moves that the sport to it, very similar to diving and are very requires, Carroll agile, it makes stresses the “fear facgolf. You’ve got to progress come that tor” he credits with much quicker.” move properly, there’s attracting divers also The Flite Diving serves as the greatest Club began in 1998 challenge for youna lot of repetition.” and has grown in sters. numbers ever since. “We have enough Steve Carroll In the summer, divers time to try and make meet at the Aquarena kids excel at the sport. on the campus of But weather you’re Memorial University five days a week able to handle a fear of heights or a fear to work on technique, and the results of smacking the water is another speak for themselves. thing,” he says. “In one sense the water Flite divers Kate McCarthy, Quinn looks pretty soft. But when you fall Crane and Aaron Thorne recently com- from a height of 10 metres at 45 km/h, peted at the Diving Canada Junior it can be like hitting a brick wall.” National Championships, with Thorne The danger factor is usually not a returning home with a bronze medal. concern, unless the dive is not done The third place finish represents the correctly, which is why Carroll and his first time the 11-year-old was able to wife stress mastering the fundamentals reach the podium at the national level. — even if it means repeating the same “For three years we thought he had a moves over and over again. shot at it, it was good to see him break “This sport has a very technical side through and win it,” Carroll says. “He’s to it, very similar to golf. You’ve got to the most dedicated diver I’ve ever seen. move properly, there’s a lot of repetiHe works very hard and even after a tion,” he says. wipe out, he just keeps going. He’s also The Flite Diving Club is the only divvery athletic.” ing organization in the province, and The Flite Diving Club is now prepar- consists mostly of athletes from the ing for the Canada Games in Regina, greater St. John’s area. However, in the Sask., in August. Six team members — past team members have come from John Daly, Mark Chafe, Scott other regions of the province, including MacDonald, Kate McCarthy, Sara Labrador. O’Keefe, and Holly Stanley— will take email@example.com
Paul Daly/The Independent
Red Rocket seeking boost from Raps Free agent Bonner in talks for big raise By Doug Smith Torstar wire service
oney is the central issue in negotiations between the Toronto Raptors and two of their youngest players, but the differences far outweigh the similarities as talks continue with the representatives of Matt Bonner and Roko Ukic. And GM Rob Babcock may be facing a difficult decision in at least one of the cases. Bonner endeared himself to Raptor fans with hustle and a personality perfectly suited to curry favour with the paying customers who admire effort as much as they do athleticism. But he remains unsigned and may stay that way for a while as Babcock and Bonner’s agent try to figure out exactly what the young forward is worth. “We really want Matt back, there’s no doubt about that,” Babcock says. And then he let the other shoe drop: “But there’s a dollar figure and you can’t go over that.” Bonner, a former Chicago Bulls second-round pick acquired by then general manager Glen Grunwald, made about $385,000 (all figures U.S.) last season, the minimum that can be paid to an NBA player. While it’s obvious that Bonner is in line for a substantial
pay increase, the amount of his raise — and the length of his new contract — are the current sticking points in chats between Babcock and Kenny Grant, Bonner’s agent. “It’s a situation where the agent is doing the best job he can for him,” says Babcock. While some circumstances are the same in the Ukic talks, the Raptors appear to be much further along in trying to get the rookie point guard under contract. Babcock denies a report out of Ukic’s native Croatia yesterday that a deal had been struck but did say he understood Ukic is close to being contractually free to sign with Toronto. “It’s looking favourable,” the general manager says of negotiations on an NBA deal for the 6-foot-5 guard. “I think the buyout (required with Ukic’s European team) is pretty much worked out over there; the rest is negotiating a deal that works for him.” The Raptors can contribute only $350,000 towards the buyout under NBA rules and Ukic, depending on how much more he had to pay, would likely be seeking a rich enough contract from Toronto to at least make up part of the difference. There is no indication how much of a raise Bonner would want, or how much
Babcock is offering. Considering exNew Jersey Net Brian Scalabrine scored a free-agent contract with Boston that starts him at a reported $2.5 million per season, some NBA officials see the free-agent market as being way out of whack at the moment. Toss in the deals signed by Larry Hughes in Cleveland (he’ll start at about $12 million a year despite missing nearly a quarter of every season he’s played because of injury) and the contract of Bobby Simmons in Milwaukee (five years, $47 million) and there is plenty of cash being thrown around. Babcock may also be considering throwing some money around just to make one of his excess players disappear and to clear up a roster spot that could be used for a youngster. Veteran Lamond Murray, scheduled to make more than $5 million this coming season and in no way a part of Toronto’s long-term future, could be simply waived and paid off in an effort to ease a roster logjam. Babcock had no comment on that possibility but if Murray does stick around and Bonner, Ukic and Pape Sow are signed, Toronto will have 15 guaranteed contracts and no room to sign a third point guard, which is a must going into next season.
JULY 17, 2005
INDEPENDENTSPORTS • 39
Argo finds mom knows best Baker gets lectured for three hours after punching teammate By Donovan Vincent Torstar wire service
So what did his mother, 50, tell him this time? Baker didn’t want to give too many specifics, but the general message was have fun when you ometimes a good stern lecture from mom is play, but show respect for your teammates, and all a man needs to get his head cleared after channel your aggression in a positive way. going astray. Most importantly, she said, be aware that when But three hours worth? you act like that, a lot of people see it and it makes That’s what talented but temperamental a bad impression. Toronto Argonauts receiver Robert Baker had to Baker’s one-game suspension meant he was on endure after his mother Sheila found out her son the sidelines last Saturday supporting his teampunched teammate Noel Prefontaine in the face mates instead of playing in a 27-26 win over on the sidelines during a recent CFL game in Saskatchewan. Calgary. It was a tough pill for him to swallow. Actually, the way Sheila “I’m a fierce competitor so Baker found out about the incisitting on the sidelines burns, dent and her son’s subsequent you know what I’m saying? But “I’m a fierce one-game suspension is perhaps if you make a mistake you have competitor so sitting to suffer the consequences, be a more compelling than the threehour long distance tongue-lashman and accept them. So I was on the sidelines ing Baker, 29, got via telephone a cheerleader that night. call from Florida. “I’m glad we won, so I burns, you know Recounting the story before a wouldn’t feel as guilty as I what I’m saying? recent practice, Baker described already do about being sushis 14-year-old brother Dante, a pended,” he adds. But if you make a highly ranked 6-foot-4 high He says he plans to work on mistake you have school basketball player in keeping a better lid on his emoFlorida who loves surfing the tions, admitting his outbursts to suffer the Internet for stories about himhave led some to label him a self. “head case.” consequences, Dante also likes to keep up But thanks to Argos head be a man and with his older brother’s progress coach Mike Clemons and his and was doing just that the day “check your emotional baggage accept them.” after the punching incident. He at the door” philosophy, Baker probably didn’t have to search has been embraced by the team. Robert Baker too long given the bizarre story Since joining the Argonauts made headlines across Canada. as a free agent in March of So as little brothers are prone to do, he told 2004, Baker has been a key performer. He was the mom. only Argo receiver to catch for over 1,000 yards “He told her. Yah, he told her. I wasn’t going to last year and he was a standout during Toronto’s tell her,” Baker says, chuckling as he recounts his Grey Cup win last November, leading all brother’s role. receivers with six catches for 101 yards, scoring But the lecture from his mother was no occa- the Argos’ first touchdown in the game. sion for mirth. But there are still some lingering effects from Baker says his mother is an Evangelist so the “the punch heard around the CFL.” Baker has incident, plus having to find out about it through tried to apologize to Prefontaine, but the Argo Dante, didn’t sit well with her. kicker has rebuffed him, remaining steely and But then again, his mother — Baker lost his aloof for now. father to cancer when he was 9 — has had to deal Clemons says it’s not his role to convince his with poor behaviour from her son in the past, two players to patch things up. They will have to stemming from a potent mixture of immaturity do that themselves.As for whether Baker has and a volatile temper. Last year, he got into a spat learned his lesson, Clemons offered a cautious with an Argo teammate during practice; he broke assessment. a teammate’s jaw in a fight during his college “Whether he has learned his lesson or not is days at Auburn; and he served a 10-month stint in never for us to forecast, it’s for us to see. prison seven years ago for trafficking cocaine. “The proof is in the pudding.”
Frank Moores signs a proclamation for minor hockey week at Confederation building during his time as premier of Newfoundland and Labrador in the late 1970s. Joining Moores is George Fardy, president of the Newfoundland Amateur Hockey Association at the time and current chair of the Hockey Newfoundland and Labrador Hall of Fame induction committee.
‘Frank wouldn’t miss a game’ Before becoming premier, Frank Moores was a hockey builder worthy of a hall-of-fame induction By Darcy MacRae The Independent
o hockey fans in Harbour Grace, Frank Moores was much more than a former premier of Newfoundland and Labrador. He is remembered fondly as the man responsible for bringing the town its first arena and senior hockey team, feats for which Don Johnson, Moores’ friend and former Hockey Canada president, says he should never be forgotten. “I think he felt an obligation to the Town of Harbour Grace,” Johnson tells The Independent. “He cared about the town and he cared about the game.” Moores was the driving force behind the construction of the S.W. Moores Arena in Harbour Grace in 1958, which is named after his father, Silas. The stadium was as nice as any in the province at the time of its opening, with a seating capacity of 2,000. For the first 10 years of its existence, the Moores family ran pipes underground from their fish plant to the arena to provide the refrigeration for the ice surface — at no cost. Before the construction of the stadium was even finished, Moores began working on bringing senior hockey to Harbour Grace. Together with legendary Newfoundland hockey player George Faulkner, Moores managed to put the Conception Bay CeeBees together in 1958 and entered the team in the old Newfoundland senior hockey league.
With Moores as the team’s president for their first nine years, the CeeBees went on to become one of the most successful and popular senior clubs in the province. Through it all, Moores was possibly the team’s biggest fan. “Frank wouldn’t miss a game — at home or on the road,” says Faulkner, who served as player/coach. As much as he loved watching his CeeBees, Moores was also very understanding when it came to his players. Perhaps the greatest example is when Father David Bauer asked Faulkner to play for Canada at the 1966 World Hockey Championships in Yugoslavia. If Faulkner was to suit up for Canada, it would mean the CeeBees would have to make do without their best player for much of the season, a fact some felt would prevent him from playing at the world’s. However, when Moores received word of Faulkner’s invitation, he did not hesitate to let the skilled forward go to Yugoslavia. “I said ‘Frank, Father Bauer wants me to play for Canada’s team.’ Frank said ‘You’ve got to go, there weren’t any ifs, ands, or buts,’” Faulkner recalls. Moores’ tireless efforts to ensure the CeeBees success, combined with his work toward constructing the arena in Harbour Grace, earned him a spot in the Newfoundland and Labrador Hockey Hall of Fame this past June. firstname.lastname@example.org
Such is the life of a sports writer From page 40 I was done for. With the boat leaning so far to the left I could feel the salt water splashing my face, I slipped a few inches off my seat. With Justin yelling instructions to the crew and Paul snapping pictures as furiously as if he’d just seen Danny Williams in his Prowler, I knew I was all alone in my battle with the sea. Slipping a few more inches and with my foot now just mere centimetres from the water, I thought to myself, “So this is how I go. Drowned in the waters of Conception Bay, while on the job, no less. Wait a minute. Shouldn’t this get me into some kind of media hall of fame or something? There’s got to be a wing for print reporters who die in the line of duty.” Before I completed my vision of a state funeral featuring a eulogy by Ron MacLean and thousands
of grief stricken young women, the boat shifted and we quickly adjusted back to even keel. Suddenly I was fine, no longer clinging to the rail for life, but instead watching as Paul tried his best to take a few snaps while avoiding the saltwater spray from reaching his camera. The scene repeated itself a few more times before the race was over, but none were as scary as that first turn. Perhaps it was adrenaline, maybe it was my will to live, or possibly it was my memory to use two hands on the rail. No matter the cause, after that initial turn I was able to relax and enjoy the race. A little more than an hour after it started, Paul and I were back on land and headed for the car. We waved good-bye to Justin and his crew and headed to another job. Such is the life of a sports writer. email@example.com
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SUNDAY THROUGH SATURDAY, JULY 17-23, 2005 — PAGE 40
By Darcy MacRae The Independent
he Rock rugby team could not have a more fitting captain than Peter Densmore — just ask the coaching staff. Co-head coach Simon Blanks is adamant that Densmore’s leadership abilities and athleticism mark him as an ideal team leader. Simply put, he says Densmore is the perfect choice to lead the province’s entry in the Rugby Canada Super League. “He’s a Newfoundlander through and through,” Blanks tells The Independent. “He’d die for the province. I’d go to war with him, no problem.” Densmore is a warrior on the rugby pitch, never hesitating to fling his sixfoot, 200-plus pound body in the direction of an opposing player. He can play the game rough, but can also play with finesse — factors that make him one of the top hookers in the super league. His friendly disposition and big smile make it hard to imagine him running over an opponent. But with a firm handshake that gives every indication he could bring you to your knees if he so desired, it doesn’t take long to figure out Densmore is as powerful on the pitch as he is respected off it. “If he asks the boys to put their body on the line, he’s the first one to do it too,” Blanks says. “If things get out of hand, he has the smarts to be able to rein the boys in. He’ll give somebody a lambasting if they deserve it and is fearless in his approach. That goes a long way with the boys.” Blanks and fellow co-coach Pat Palfrey named Densmore team captain before the season opened in June. The Peter Densmore decision came after last year’s captain Brian Cooke informed the team he would be unable to play in 2005, paving the way for Densmore to take hold of the position. After serving as vice-captain in recent seasons, the move was not a total surprise to Densmore, but it was still a special moment. “I was glad to see I was thought of in that role,” Densmore says. “It’s an honour, really.” The 28-year-old St. John’s resident has been a member of The Rock since the team’s inception in 1998. He’s enjoyed representing the province in contests against teams from across the country, but admits in recent seasons his physical sport,” says Densmore. “You desire to play such a gruelling game can’t let anybody down on your team. If was not what it once was. you don’t want to make that tackle, Now that he’s The Rock’s captain, how- somebody else is going to have to work ever, he has a new found fire in his gut twice as hard.” Considering the physical nature of for the sport. “It’s renewed my interest in rugby the sport, it can be difficult to always maintain composure in when I was kind of a rugby game. The waning a bit,” he “Our first time in the things visible from says. “Just being field level are hard around this group of final, we were really enough to withstand, guys and knowing how hard they train feeling like underdogs. let alone the furious, and often unscrupujust for a shot a winning is great.” Our second time there lous, action hidden in the middle of scrums. Blanks calls Denswe knew we had the When an opponent more a well-rounded pulls on your ears or leader, an individual ability to win.” kicks at your groin, it’s who can shake the tempting to seek team up with a pep Peter Densmore instant retaliation. But talk or with a big in Densmore’s case, he play. As far as the team captain is concerned, that’s the has to stay composed if he wants his best approach, since his words mean lit- teammates to remain calm and focused. “You try to be as cerebral as you can, tle if he’s not willing to back them up. “You have to have a balance, espe- but naturally you get aggressive and cially with rugby because it’s such a hyper in a game,” Densmore says.
Paul Daly/The Independent
Fearless leader Peter Densmore, captain of The Rock, would ‘die for the province’: coaching staff “Especially where we’re playing for Newfoundland — the pride of where we’re from, the us-against-them attitude. So it does get very emotional, especially in the big games.” Densmore and The Rock are certainly no stranger to big games, having played in two of the last three Rugby Canada Super League championship games, including the 2004 final played in St. John’s. On both occasions the team fell short of their goal and watched the competition celebrate a national title. Such loses have been used as motivation this season, as The Rock have stormed out of the gate to go 5-0. Should they win their regular season finale versus Niagara on July 23, they will once again represent the Eastern Division in the league final, a game Densmore says the team is more prepared for this year than in seasons past. “I think we’re ahead at this point because we’re paying more attention to detail,” says Densmore. “Last year when we got to 5-0, and then 6-0, our
fitness level started to drop a bit. We’ve spent the past week just working on our fitness and that’s going to benefit us.” Several signs indicate Densmore’s assessment of The Rock is correct, including the club’s 25-19 win over the Toronto Extreme on July 1. The win was a huge one for The Rock, since it was the first time they had ever beaten the Extreme in Toronto. “I think we just totally dominated the game. The score was fairly close, but if you were there to watch the game, you would have seen that Toronto was never really in it,” he says. “That’s something we’d been aiming for. We controlled the game, which is a sign of our growing maturity.” Densmore’s ability in super league play this season has caught the attention of Rugby Canada. He recently competed at the Churchill Cup in Edmonton as a member of the national senior men’s team, giving him his first taste of international rugby. “We’ve always believed Peter was able to play at that level,” Blanks says.
“He’s certainly the most skilful hooker in the country. A few injuries knocked him back a little over the years, but we believe he was overlooked once or twice. When he got his chance to play he did well.” Densmore’s performance in Edmonton impressed the national brass enough that he is being considered for a spot on the national team again when the team hits the road this fall. He would love the opportunity to compete with the red and white once more, but insists that for now, he is more concerned with leading The Rock to their first super league championship. “That’s been our goal all year,” he says. “Our first time in the final, we were really feeling like underdogs. Our second time there we knew we had the ability to win. “We’ve been there twice and know what to expect of our competition and ourselves a bit better. We understand our own team a lot more.”
to get through the assignment with my head held high. I’m a sports writer for crying out loud. I’ve asked big, buff angry hockey players how it felt to shoot the winning goal into their own net, I’ve written columns chastising large, obnoxious (in my opinion anyway) football players, and have even been hit by blazing foul balls and errant slap shots. I should be able to handle a couple of hours on a fine sailboat. When the big moment came and we sailed out into Conception Bay, I realized it wasn’t so bad. I was ecstatic that my earlier fears seemed so irrational. The water was calm, the scenery beauti-
ful, and the crew friendly and humourous. I felt stupid for being so worked up. It was great, it was relaxing — it was the life a sports writer was meant to live. Then the race started. Suddenly we picked up speed, twisting, turning, diving, ducking — things I didn’t know a boat could do. Being unfamiliar with sailing, I had no idea that when a boat takes a sharp turn it can appear as if one side of the vessel might actually dip into the raging ocean below. It was at that exact point that I thought
A sports writer and the sea
admit, sometimes it can be tough to admit fear of any kind. Growing up in a rural community on Cape Breton Island, fear wasn’t something you ever wanted to put on display. If the schoolyard bully threatened violence, you talked tough while at the same time desperately hoping a teacher, secretary, heck, even a little sister, would come along and break things up. Thankfully I’m now as far removed from the days of faking no fear as I am from the days of New Kids on the Block. I have no problem admitting I’m deathly afraid of snakes and bats, while acknowledging rats and sudden noises
The game don’t exactly catch my fancy either. But nothing compares to my fear of water — more specifically, drowning. Despite growing up next to the ocean, I never did learn to swim. In fact, it’s been a good 10 or 12 years since I placed as much as a baby toe in the ocean, a lake, river, or even a swimming pool. For the most part, my phobia hasn’t
affected my life at all. I’ve always been more of a fall and winter kind of guy (when hockey season starts). But last week I came face to face with my greatest fear when picture editor Paul Daly and I boarded Shaloway, Justin Ladha’s entry in a Wednesday afternoon race on the waters off Conception Bay South. The only thing that kept me from completely freaking out was the fact that eight other people were on board with me, and surely one of them would throw me a lifeline if I fell in. Sitting on the boat in the minutes leading up to the race, I was determined
See “Such is the life,” page 39