November 21, 2012

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VOLUME 22 ISSUE 12

NOVEMBER 21, 2012

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Objectivity in journalism?

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Beer explored academically

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Women’s soccer year-in-review

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Washroom cleanliness explored

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TRU’s Independent Student Newspaper


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November 21, 2012

Feature

There’s no such thing as objectivity in journalism

Full disclosure: this piece is biased, and there’s nothing wrong with that Mike Davies

Ω Editor-in-Chief As long as there has been journalism, there have been journalists. As long as there have been journalists, there has been the question of objectivity and bias — or at least the perception of objectivity or bias — in what they do. This is a ridiculous question. There is no such thing as objectivity in journalism. Whoa, now! “Slow down, young whippersnapper,” say the old-school journalists who pride themselves on this false proclamation they made their careers based on “fair and balanced” journalism, or at least “from all facets” reportage. This is simply not true. It is true that many of the things reported in the news media throughout the years have examined things from many angles and strived to not pre-determine a conclusion and force it on the reader. This is not the same as objectivity. According to the Oxford Canadian Dictionary, “objective,” in the context of this discussion is defined as, “1. (of a person, an opinion, etc.) not influenced by personal bias.” The key word is influenced. There are too many influences on a piece of journalism to propose that none of those influences were based on personal bias. Or, at least, it is an unrealistic expectation to commit to this idea as the foundation of the industry. I ask this of those aforementioned journalists with their claims of objectivity: how did you decide to write those articles that were “fair and balanced” and were examined “from all facets?” Did you decide they were worthy of coverage because the public needed to be informed on a topic? If so, you decided those stories were more important than some other pieces you could have done instead. That’s a bias right there. Maybe an editor assigned you those stories and you yourself had no bias, intentions or conceptions of how they would turn out when you started your research or writing — they were simply assignments. If this is the case, you have a closer claim to objectivity than others might, but by the time they got to your audience (and in fact before they were even assigned to you), biased choices had been made to it that influenced its reach and message. Before anyone gets all up in arms about how journalism is supposed to be the last bastion of honesty and integrity in a society drowning in its own debauchery and lies, and asking how I dare accuse the institution of such malfeasance, I should declare that this is not an attack on the industry, but a celebration. I don’t believe in objectivity — but only because I don’t think it’s actually possible — and believe we should celebrate and revel in our journalistic subjectivity and biases.

links to interesting-sounding articles and blog posts from some social networking platform one day in May 2012. I came across an interesting post about the Canadian government’s cutbacks in regards to environmental regulations. This article itself was extremely one-sided but the debate regarding blogs being a part of journalism is not the one I am examining. One of the comments below the piece caught my attention. It was a damning condemnation of the government regulations by someone who claimed to be editor and publisher of a community newspaper, signed by the author and included his business email address. “Why would he, as the publisher of a newspaper, put his name as a journalist to an issue like that?” I thought. How would one’s publication retain any pretence or perception from its readership of having an objective viewpoint? I guess my surprise was based on the fact that our local papers’ publishers/editors never seem to take a side on controversial issues — despite the calls for them to do so at times. So I asked the author of the comment directly. I thought by posting his business email address he was inviting such inquiries. Don Jaque, award-winning publisher and managing editor of the Northern Journal responded to my questions defensively, as if I was accusing him of being somehow less of a journalist. He seemed to take my statement of his newspaper as an “activist publication” as particularly insulting. “I do not understand why you feel it is unusual for me to put my name on such a post,” he replied. “We report on things like that routinely and my name as editor and publisher is on all of them. Why would I not?” I did not have an answer for this — I only knew there was this supposed (if completely artificial and fictitious) claim

Peter Mansbridge thinks journalists don’t need to say how they feel about topics they are covering, but some feel it would improve the quality of reportage.

—PHOTO BY JULIA MAR KS

than it is to give them unbiased facts and let them choose a position? Do you openly show the other side of the coin, or more so promote your impression of things and hope it resonates?” I typed this question completely innocently, as it was clear to me through perusing the articles on the Northern Journal site that they were anti-oil and there was a distinct lack of discussion of economics and business (I have no problems with advocacy journalism, and mistakenly assumed he would be pleased it was recognized), though will admit that looking back at it knowing what I now know about the divisiveness of the topic of objectivity, it does feel a bit accusatory. “We do not state our goals, although since they are about things such as fairness, objectivity, justice and playing a strong role in community, we would have no problem doing that, but feel that is not needed,” he replied. “Hopefully we have no biases. We certainly strive to be objective. We attempt to present the facts from all issues, from all sides as objectively as possible and present them in an interesting, compel—David Weinberger, ling way.” Based on this response, “Transparency: the new objectivity” I would definitely put him on the “objectivity is the cornerstone of the industry” side of the debate — that objectivity is the cornerstone of which seemed strange to me, based on journalism and was inquiring as to his his openness in the public sphere about thoughts on the matter as one who clearly his opinion on things like environmen(in my presumptive view) felt otherwise. tal regulations and government, and his He would go on to contradict my as- candour and resolve about that openness. sumption about his way of thinking on The great debate: Transparency the subject. I asked him, quite forwardly, after Jaque’s openness on that environmenreviewing his publication online, which by all accounts, including my own, is an tal blog would seem to reflect the school excellent one (especially for such a small of thought championed in part by David community in such a remote location), Weinberger, a senior researcher at Har“Is it more important to be clear with vard’s Berkman Center for Internet & your readers about your goals and biases Society and co-director of the Harvard

“Transparency brings us to accept ideas as credible the way the claim of objectivity used to.”

The great debate: objectivity As I do on occasion, I was clicking

Library Innovation Lab, in an article titled, “Transparency: the new objectivity,” published in September 2009. “[W]e have taken objectivity into realms where it really should not go,” he said. “For example, for a long time, journalists aimed to be objective. That’s not an achievable aim and the claim that reporting is objective is not just wrong but seriously misleading.” He goes on to say that because objectivity is technically impossible, despite the long-time journalistic assertion, authors should, instead of pretending objectivity, present their own biases to their audience so they can take those biases into account when reading and interpreting the work itself. “Transparency gives the reader information by which she can undo some of the unintended effects of the ever-present biases,” he said. “Transparency brings us to accept ideas as credible the way the claim of objectivity used to. “[P]resenting information as objective means hiding the biases that inevitably are there. It’d be more accurate and truthful to acknowledge those biases, so that readers can account for them in what they read.” But according to J-Source, the online “Canadian Journalism Project,” in an article dated Nov. 21, 2011, “Transparency is a double-edged sword. It can increase and diminish credibility at the same time. Knowing about a potential conflict of interest is better than not knowing. But no disclosure statement can ever be complete enough to satisfy the truly sceptical.” The media landscape: can the audience tell the difference? Should they be expected to? “I think average readers can calibrate for bias,” said Reuters columnist Jack Shafer during a live chat session on Poynter.org, a global leader in promoting, informing on and examining the craft of journalism. “For example, is there a viewer in the nation who, when he tunes into the opinion shows on Fox News Channel and MSNBC and Current at

night, doesn’t know he’s hearing biased, opinionated coverage?” Shafer claims that transparency is not, as some claim, the way to cause an audience to easily dismiss an author or their work based on the writer’s leanings, but instead causes the work itself to be examined on its own merits, because there is no assumption of bias when one’s views are already known. “We’re kidding ourselves and kidding our readers when we pretend that journalists have no opinions and no biases,” he said. “My view is that journalists can’t be objective, because as human beings we are all subjective. What we can do is employ an objective method in the reporting and writing of the news: To be fair, to be accurate, to be comprehensive.” When I asked Jaque to comment on the state of Canadian media in general, he had a different opinion than the one he shared about his own objectivity. “Do you feel that the media has been given an image of itself about its responsibility?” I had asked. “By that I mean is there an assumption that the media merely reports findings or has it become necessary for them to affect the interpretation of the public based on their own (the media’s) views?” “I think the media in most cases is about, a) making money; and/or b) entertaining, rather than journalism for the most part these days and as a result the quality of the information we get (as the public) is low,” he said. “As a result the public’s image of the media is low -- so yes that image is earned, unfortunately. The second part of that question is difficult to answer, mainly because there is no blanket response to it. Some journalists within some media report findings in a quality way and some others definitely try to spin the findings,” he said, though he clearly considered this “lesser” journalism. I suppose that is why he seemed so offended by my original line of questions. He thought I was accusing him of being the type of journalist he clearly has distaste for.

SEE JOURNALISM p. 4

ON THE COVER: Some wonder at times if the washroom facilities around TRU ever get cleaned. “We can send a cleaner in at 10 a.m. to clean. At 10:05 it can be a disaster again,” according to Warren Asuchak, TRU’s assistant director of facilities. See story page 4.— PHOTO BY DEVAN C. TASA


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The Omega · Volume 22, Issue 12

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November 21, 2012

Volume 22, Issue 12

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Editorial/Opinions As I say to my toddler, “Use your words”

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Editor’s Note Mike Davies Ω Editor-in-Chief I’m becoming seriously disappointed in the way people treat language. Like it ain’t no thang. Like it’s jus somethin that we jus use cuz it gets across what we think. lol I don’t think people realize that the slack-ass, lazy way they communicate not only makes them sound less intelligent, but could also literally make them less intelligent over time. Think about it. The lazier you become in your communication, the lazier your brain will get. I’m not just making this up, either. There are numerous scientific studies that directly connect language to thought. For example, a study published in July 2012 in Psychological Science, one of the premier research journals of psychological examinations produced by the Association of Psychological

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tines” underlying the interpretation of grammatically correct (or incorrect) sentences, such as “The man saw the boy who kicked the ball.” I’m not going to get into all the data analyses structures and what kind of software they were using, but sufficed to say, people’s brains work better (even algebraically) when stimulated with grammatically correct statements. So I will challenge you this, Thompson Rivers University students, faculty and staff: The next time you are going to end a sentence with a sideways smiley face, or type “lol” when you think something is funny, think about what the message is that you’re trying to get across and use a sentence. Use a proper, grammatically correct sentence. Not a fragment, either. (See what I did there?) You might find that not only is the act of taking the time to put down in words what you actually mean more satisfying than relegating your feelings into a symbol — knowing that there is no misunderstanding of what you mean because you thought it through and expressed it precisely — but the stimulation you have given your brain just by forcing it to respond differently than it usually would spurs it to bigger and better things. And hey, according to this study, it might even make you better at math. editor@truomega.ca

Don’t let the short-term scope fool you, stay focused on the big picture

All material in this publication is copyright The Omega and may not be reproduced without the expressed consent of the publisher. All unsolicited submissions become copyright Omega 2012.

(Correspondence not intended for publication should be labelled as such.)

Science, is one of many that has studied the effects of language use on brain functions. “Our findings indicate that processing the syntax of language elicits the known substrate of linguistic competence,” according to the study by Monti, Parsons and Osherson from the University of California Los Angeles, University of Sheffield, and Princeton University. If you need to go back and read that statement again because you use colons and parentheses more often than you say the equivalent of “I agree,” or “just joking,” go ahead. “This double dissociation argues against the view that language provides the structure of thought across all cognitive domains,” they found. That’s fancy-speak for “language use makes your brain operate effectively.” And it’s not just that lazy language usage induces a cycle of even lazier language use, though that is certainly the case. This particular study was focused on the cognitive functions of the brain to use arithmetic and algebra based on stimuli of properly structured and worded phrases. In the test, 64 grammatically correct arguments were presented to the subjects while their brain was being scanned for cognitive functions and six ungrammatical arguments were interspersed within the trials. Algebraic expressions such as 2 x (5-3) were then mentally constructed from “syntactic rou-

TRUe Thoughts Taylor Rocca Ω Copy/Web Editor Usually I like to focus my sights on the bigger picture, the long-term, the overall scope of things. Sometimes that isn’t an easy thing to do and I find myself mired in a closed-off view, a short-term worry about the present with no consideration for the next step along the way. In fact, I ran into that exact problem when it came to writing my column this week. Usually, I have a firm idea of just what I want to say, how I want to say it and the impact I want it to have. This was not one of those weeks. In fact, this week I stared blankly at my screen for hours. All I could think about was how to get words in the document that would communicate to our

readers some form of information, entertainment or other random value. I had unknowingly put my blinders on and focused in on too small of a task. After frustration had mounted to a point where I was ready to give up, I looked to my right and noticed a small blue book sitting beside my computer. Being a journalist, I keep a small notebook with me at all times. In fact, I keep multiple notebooks with me, each with its own unique and individual purpose. This small blue notebook happened to be my own personal notebook, one set aside for penning my own random thoughts, questions or interesting observations as I go about my regular everyday misadventures. And then it hit me. I had already decided on the topic of my column, I was just looking past it as it sat quietly within the pages of my little blue notebook. Earlier in the day, as I almost always do, I had been going about my regular routine with my ear buds plugged in and my iPod cranking out the tunes. It was during this seemingly normal sequence that I was hammered by a short set of lyrics that really struck a chord with me, so to speak. “Well, I confess that, so far, happiness eludes me in my life. It better hurry up if it’s ever to

be mine; better hurry up now if we’re ever going to find what we’re living for.” The line came courtesy of Stephen Jenkins, the lead singer of Third Eye Blind, on the track “Dao of St. Paul.” I’m a huge believer in music and how it empowers the listener to take a hold of the reigns of life and direct that sled in whatever direction he or she wants it to go. While we all go through our own personal struggles, ups, downs and roller coasters of emotion, we still have significant control over what happens to us. We shouldn’t be waiting for happiness to “hurry up now.” No. In fact, we should go out there and create our own happiness, whatever that might be. To think otherwise is to be far too focused on the short-term struggles and not enough on the long-term successes that await us. As we trudge through the final days of the semester, with all-nighters aplenty, papers to write, presentations to give and a seemingly endless stack of work to complete, don’t get mired in the short-term stress that can easily overtake you. Instead, while juggling those tasks, keep one eye on the future and use that bigger picture to keep yourself grounded in the short-term. copy@truomega.ca

Mask ban covers up freedom of expression Alexander Sorochan The Gateway (U of A)

EDMONTON (CUP) — Taking to the streets in protest of the government is an age-old practice and a fundamental right in democratic countries. Great historical figures like Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr. have seen its advantages, especially when it’s hard to get your voice heard any other way. However, far too often there are people involved trying to take the protests too far, inciting violence and vandalizing property. To crack down on these unruly savages, the House of Commons has passed a bill stating that during all violent protests any mask or item used to cover the face will be considered illegal, and result in up to 10 years in prison. While the bill is intended to help control violent protesters, it’s problematic in a few ways. There’s no line drawn to define what constitutes a mask. Someone wearing a hat low on their head or a hood will have their face covered. Then there are the people who, for religious reasons, wear burkas or other religious headwear that conceals their face. Under this new law, these people, even if they happen to accidentally wander upon a violent protest, might be guilty. Furthermore, in the event that a peaceful protest turns violent, like in the Quebec tuition protests, it’s unclear what would happen under this new law. The peaceful protesters wearing masks wouldn’t be guilty of the violence itself, but could still land in prison for up to 10 years. On top of that, the new bill isn’t going to change anything. By the time a protest escalates to the point of violence, with people running through the streets hurling Molotovs through windows, flipping police cars and breaking everything, the last thing the rioters will be worrying about whether it’s illegal to wear a mask. Telling the violent protesters that it’s illegal to wear a mask while causing all this mayhem seems blatantly futile. The House of Commons is saying, “Hey guys, we can tell you don’t really care about the law right now, but don’t wear a mask because that’s also illegal.” The reason would-be violent rioters are wearing masks in the first place is so they can’t be identified by police while doing illegal acts. If these people are willing to vandalize and destroy property already, then it’s not too difficult to believe they would be willing to break one more law to protect their identities. The government’s banning of masks during violent protests is a way to try to crack down on radical groups and make it easier for them to arrest the people involved with violence, but the problems outweigh the benefits. Many innocent people would be wrongfully accused, and could even serve jail time, just for being in the area. The people already breaking the law in riots don’t seem like the kind of people worried about breaking one more law. Though the ban has good intentions, it has too many negative consequences and would be useless against the intended targets. This bill needs to be defined better in order to ensure that truly innocent protesters are not lumped in with violent radicals.


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November 21, 2012

News Shared blame for washroom cleanliness Devan C. Tasa Ω News Editor

Walking into an unclean washroom on campus is something that’s happened to all students, but the onus is on everybody to make sure they don’t become that way in the first place. Warren Asuchak, TRU’s assistant director of facilities, said the washrooms in Old Main are washed five times a day while other washrooms are cleaned three times a day. During the day, custodians come to make sure the toilets, sinks, f loors and mirrors are clean and the dispensers are full of soap, toilet rolls and paper towels. At night, the custodians clean the washroom to an APPA level 1 standard, a common cleaning standard for universities. Level 1 states the washroom

must have shiny clean f loors, all surfaces have a polished appearance, washroom fixtures gleam and are odour-free and trash cans are emptied. Unfor t u nately, the standards cannot change the behaviour of washroom users that don’t do tasks such as f lushing the toilets and throwing used paper towels into the garbage can, Asuchak said. “It takes one person to use the washroom to make a mess. We can send a cleaner at 10 a.m. to clean. At 10:05 it can be a disaster again. It’s the nature of the business,” he said.

“Having said that, I don’t want to leave the cleaners off the hook. They can always do a better job and we always need to push them. But as users, we are part of the problem.” A s u c h a k said he regularly inspects the washrooms, which often meet the standards. If they don’t, he talks to the custodians involved. I m p r ove m e n t s have also been made in the past. “Over the years, we have increased our frequencies in how often we clean during the day,” he said. “I have added more day por-

ters to go in and clean the washrooms.” Facilities is also looking at long-term solutions to ensure the washrooms remain clean. A way to do that is to lower the water pressure in the sinks so the water doesn’t splash out. Another way is to get rid of paper towels, but that solution requires the entrances to the washrooms to not have handles that people have to touch. “We are looking at washrooms like that, that don’t require doors and not have paper towel and just have the hand driers, because that would eliminate a lot of the garbage,” Asuchak said. For those who find a washroom that’s unacceptably dirty, they can let facilities know by calling the facilities help desk at 250-828-5388 or scanning one of the QR codes within the washroom.

Aboriginal culinary team to prepare feast Devan C. Tasa Ω News Editor

A culinary team that participated in the recent 2012 World Culinary Olympics in Erfurt, Germany will be coming to TRU to prepare traditional First Nations dishes with a modern twist. Aboriginal Culinary Team Canada (ACTC) will be at the culinary arts cafeteria at 7 p.m. on Dec. 8 to serve a three-course meal, plus dessert. Tickets to the dinner are $75 each and can be purchased at the cafeteria. “We’re doing the dinner to sup-

port the team,” said Ed Walker, the chair of the culinary arts program. “The funds that we raise from this will go back to the team.” ACTC was one of 46 regional teams in the culinary Olympics on Oct. 5 to 10. It was one of eight Canadian regional teams competing. Those Olympics are held every four years. The regional teams had to create cold platter displays with finger foods, with the main ingredients being fish, shellfish, bird, game, or vegetables. Leading the team is chef Ben Genaille, who’s currently the head of Vancouver Community

College’s Aboriginal culinary program. “We know the coach of the team through one of the faculty members, [who] met him at a meeting in Vancouver and just got to talking to him,” Walker said. “So we developed a relationship with him.” Items on the menu include pheasant and wild mushroom terrine, which is a meat dish in the form of a loaf; a sage bannock crisp; a West Coast seafood consommé, which is a clear soup made from rich bouillon; sockeye salmon galantine, a poached dish made of stuffed deboned meat; and “Indian ice cream” or sxusem,

a traditional dessert made of buffalo berries that has the texture of whipped cream. The dinner will also benefit the culinary arts students, Walker said. “It has a positive effect for sure,” he said. “Our students will be getting involved in [cooking] the dinner.” It seems the culinary arts program is trying to look for ways in integrate more First Nations cooking in their teaching. On the TRU human resource page is a job posting for a sessional culinary arts lecturer that will develop teaching strategies about Aboriginal food preparation and preservation.

Good versus evil in the exotic Szechuan

Actor’s Workshop Theatre launches second show of the season Samantha Garvey Ω Contributor

Trying to achieve economic success while maintaining a strong moral ethic is a theme explored in the TRU’s Actor’s Workshop Theatre’s (AWT) next show, The Good Soul of Szechuan. Directed by Heidi Verwey, this Bertolt Brecht drama is the second of AWT’s series and runs Nov. 22 to 24, Nov. 29 to Dec. 1. Brittany McCarthy plays the main character, Shen Te, as well as her alter ego, Shui Ta. The two characters represent the dichotomy of good and evil. “It really is hard,” McCarthy said. “The interludes between being Shen Te to changing into Shui Ta are very short, so there’s very little time to change mindsets.” She said she tries to find the reasons for the actions and behaviour of each personality and tries to relate it to the audience. Dan Ondang plays Wang, a water carrier who tries to please the gods. He said he can relate to his character in trying to accomplish things that are actually out of his control. Both Ondang and McCarthy are fourth-year theatre arts students, but the cast is made up of a much more diverse group. “There are first-year theatre students, English students and inter-

national students,” said Nick Gulycz, a third-year theatre arts student who will play the character Yang. Verwey’s own daughter, nineyear-old Emma, is playing the role of ‘the boy.’ “I actually put my life’s blood into the show,” Verwey said. Overall, there are 28 cast-members, which is huge according to Verwey. “I love it,” she said, adding that her first directing jobs were community theatre shows that had thousands of actors, a handful of children and even a few dogs. “I like big messy shows. The more people, the more chaos. It’s fun.” The play was written by Bertolt Brecht, a prominent German playwright who had never actually been to Szechuan. Verwey said she chose the show partly because it is a cultural show set in an exotic place. “I did want to make a statement about internationalism,” she said. “It doesn’t matter where we’re from. Half the people [in the play] are from an exotic place.” “Because it’s set in an exotic place, it could be anywhere,” Gulycz added. The series of plays of the AWT every year are chosen by the directors. Verwey said she wanted to try an epic play, one that focuses more on social problems and activism,

The Good Soul of Szechuan is Actor’s Workshop Theatre’s next producation, beginning Nov. 22. Here, Brittany McCarthy (right) as Shen Te accepts a gift from the gods, Wyatt Purcha (left) and Brooke Bellam. —PHOTO BY SAMANTHA GARVEY

rather than a play that only manipulates human emotion. Auditions for the show were only five weeks ago. Since then, a set has been built, props made, lighting designed and lines and actions memorized. As well as taking five classes and starring in the show, McCarthy was also the head painter in building the complicated, struc-

tural set. McCarthy, Ondang and Gulycz all hope to act professionally after graduation. Although the show is a drama, there will be a bit of everything, the show as an organism as complex as a human being. “You won’t feel depressed by the end,” McCarthy said. “Some parts we are hoping for laughs.”

JOURNALISM...from p. 2 “There are, in certain cases, those in control [who] want to present the news from an ideological perspective, so they purposefully see to it that the news is coloured or spun a certain way, or only certain things are reported - and their bias is apparent,” he continued. “This is not objective journalism, but it is the reality with some modern day media.” He concluded his statements with a cold, depressing and bleak view of the current media landscape as far as the public perception is concerned. “The whole concept and importance of a free press and its role in maintaining democracy is no longer held in as high regard as it once was by the public, it seems.” A media legend chimes in A sweaty, shaky-handed student journalist sits in an armchair and tries to calm his voice as he asks the man in the chair opposite for his take on the issue. “Sometimes there’s a luxury in our job of not having an opinion,” laughs Peter Mansbridge, CBC’s most recognisable personality, and probably the most-respected individual in Canadian media, before giving his thoughts on the debate itself when I was lucky enough to have him grant an interview Jan. 19, 2012. “There’s nothing new about this debate,” he said. “It’s been going on for as long as I’ve been in journalism, this issue about whether or not you have to lay out how you feel about every topic before you cover it. I don’t agree with that.” Mansbridge said that despite his serious, unaffected persona on-air, there have been rare occasions in his career where he had “personal feelings about a particular subject,” but that it is in everyone’s best interest to not put those feelings forward — because it doesn’t affect his ability to do his job as a journalist. Therefore, it shouldn’t come into the equation of the audience response and cannot possibly effect their view of his integrity. “It’s like saying, if you’re a heart surgeon and you hate the patient, you’re going to let that impact the way you do the surgery? No, you’re not,” he said emphatically. “You’re going to do the best job you can to save that person’s life. It’s no different for a journalist, in my view.” So there’s some disagreement, still — but more importantly, there’s some acceptance and affirmation. We, as a society and as a media-consuming entity, acknowledge, as Mansbridge does, that, “It’s not like we’re neutered about every opinion on Earth. Journalists have opinions on things.” We also need to recognize that these opinions and biases don’t prevent talented journalists from doing their job. We just can’t agree on whether those opinions and biases affect the work being done by those talented journalists. I think perhaps Shafer put it best when he said, “Objectivity without transparency increasingly will look like arrogance. And then foolishness.” And no one wants to look foolish.


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The Omega · Volume 22, Issue 12

News New council to connect international, domestic students The council has only organized one event so far, East Ω News Editor vs. West, in which a Canadian A newly formed group on cam- DJ with Dutch ancestry and a pus is working to find ways to Ukrainian DJ had a friendly mucreate more interaction between sic battle with each other. “Immediately following the international and domestic stuevent, we had people asking us dents. The Intercultural Council is a to do more events like that,” group of 12 students from differ- Dalgleish said. On Wednesday, Nov. 21, the ent cultural backgrounds. Five of those students are domestic council will be showing the Gerstudents, while the others come man-language film The Wave at from countries such as Jamaica, 7 p.m. in the Alumni Theatre. Council member Will George Russia, Nigeria and Ukraine. chose to apThe counply to voluncil was creteer for the ated by TRU council based World to on his expetackle a speriences as an cific problem exchange stuon campus — dent in Fini nt e r n a t io n a l land. and domes“I was hoptic students ing to give don’t seem to back. When be connectI was in Fining with each land, there other. were groups “We’ve there that noticed that were doing there are the same [type cliques on of ] events campus and monthly, so I even though was hoping to they are here to be in Can—Andrew Dalgleish be on the other side of that ada, they’re still staying TRU Intercultural Council and give back to the interwith memnational stubers of their own culture,” said Mary-Grace dents that are now coming back Maung, a member of the coun- to Canada,” he said. Dalgleish and Maung had difcil. “We’re trying to give them opportunities to break out of ferent reasons to join. “I really appreciate the opporthat and explore not only what Canada can offer them, but other tunity to just interact with, for my own cultural interest, other cultures as well.” These cliques aren’t formed cultures of the world,” Dalgleish because international students said. “This is a great opportunidon’t want to connect with Ca- ty to build up my own awareness nadians, said council member and [learn] how I can improve myself through that.” Andrew Dalgleish. “I am interested in travelling “From what we’ve talked to about with other international and I’m interested in a whole students, a lot of the time they’ll bunch of different cultures,” say, ‘You know, we make great Maung said. “I will basically friends here, but we don’t get to pounce on any opportunity to know the other Canadians,’” he learn about other people.” While the council is new, Dalsaid. “There is an actual desire from them to break out but when gleish said he thought it was you are in another country that’s something that was needed on foreign to you, it’s sometimes campus. “It’s a very big task that were hard to do that, even if you are a pulling, but it’s an extremely very extroverted person.” The council’s aim is to hold worthy aim to make ourselves monthly events that will bring more culturally sensitive and the international and domestic stu- campus more culturally sensitive too,” he said. dents together in one place.

Devan C. Tasa

“...it’s an extremely worthy aim to make ourselves more culturally sensitive...”

Got a story idea? Get in touch with the appropriate section editor (email addresses on page 3, left side) and we’ll explore it.

International Intonation

Hamas leader killed, artificial muscle fibres and governing the internet Mark Hendricks Ω Contributor

Israel’s “Pillar of Cloud” mission kills Hamas military leader

man, a nanotechnology researcher from the University of Texas. These artificial muscles will let machines move in a more natural way allowing for improved fine motor skills, an application the team is hoping can be used to increase the precision of medical machines.

The full research can be found in the journal Science. Where you can find out more: http://www.sciencemag.org

Will the UN change governance of the Internet?

Hamas military leader Ahmed The Russian government is Al-Jabaari was killed in a tarcalling on the United Nations geted missile attack by the to revise international teleIsraeli Defense Force (IDF) communications regulations Wednesday, Nov. 14. to transfer governance of the IDF spokesperson Avital Internet from a non-profit orLeibovich confirmed via ganization to the UN’s InterTwitter that this attack was national Telecommunications the beginning of “a wideUnion (ITU). spread campaign on terror The ITU has not been sites and operatives in the changed since 1988. Gaza Strip, chief among The proposed changes them Hamas and Islamic would see the control of Jihad targets.” domain names and IP adThe attack -- known as dresses go from the Interna“Operation Pillar of Cloud” tional Corporation for As-- consisted of a missile signed Names and Numbers strike on Jabaari’s vehicle (ICANN) to the ITU. as it drove through the city ICANN is a non-governof Gaza. mental organization that curIn Gaza, Jabari was conrently manages IP addresses sidered “a hero because he and domain names through had managed until now to a multi-stakeholder model. escape numerous assassiIt includes representatives nation attempts by Israel,” — IMAGE COURTESY CHRISTIAN FISCHER from more than 100 governaccording to Al Jazeera WIKIMEDIA COMMONS ments, commercial interests, news in Lebanon. internet service providers Violence along the borand more, according to their der of Gaza and Israel has The muscle fibres are weaved website. been ongoing since 2006. This The changes would give conlatest violence comes despite a together out of carbon fibre truce that was to take effect at nanotubes that are then filled trol to the ITU, which allows with a mix of substances includ- only member nations to vote. the end of October. This would put control into the Where you can find out more: ing paraffin wax. The wax makes the muscle fi- hands of solely governmental ortheguardian.co.uk bres react to heat. In the future ganizations. A proposed revision to the Building better muscles the team would prefer they react to chemicals, according to Baugh- treaty declares, “Member states through science shall have the sovereign right to man. The way the fibres are woven manage the Internet within their An international team of researchers has created artificial together resembles a fabric and national territory, as well as to muscle fibres that are 200 times the team is also hoping to make manage national Internet domain stronger for their size than hu- them into clothing for firefighters names.” Where you can find out more: that would instantly react to heat man muscle fibers. news.cnet.com The team is lead by Ray Baugh- in the event of a sudden f lash.

That’s what you said For this week’s issue, we patrolled the grounds looking for your answers to this question:

How do you find the cleanliness of the washrooms at TRU?

Idriss Anchor

Fonda Hodgson

Dillon Stephens

“They’re dirty. Especially the one in Old Main-Oh man, it stinks. Sometimes I avoid it.”

“I like it a lot better than last year. It’s cleaner. I don’t feel gross about using washrooms.”

“They’re fairly clean. I haven’t been disgusted so far. The worst I saw was a wasp.”

Post-Bacculaureatte Business

Second-year arts

Second-year B.A. (English)


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November 21, 2012

Open Letters Fortunate, eh? Geordie Milne Ω Contributor

Many people, myself included, complain about Canada being too cold. But do we really need to complain about something as trivial as colder weather? Most of us live in houses that are heated and possess the basic necessities to survive. I don’t want to suggest that poverty is not a serious issue in Canada. However, Canada is in the top two per cent of wealthiest nations globally and there are far more resources for impoverished people in Canada than in developing countries. Furthermore, our government protects our basic human rights. We are blessed to live in Canada. In Canada workers have guaranteed rights. For example, we have a fixed minimum wage and are paid for overtime, coffee and meal breaks, parents have the right to parental leave and our laws protect our health and safety while on the job. This is completely foreign to third world nations. I lived in Kenya and some of

my friends worked long hours, six days a week with little pay. Many of their bosses were unreasonable, not allowing them to have time off. A person could easily be fired and replaced because workers are plentiful. Moreover, my friends had little rights to protect their health and safety in work place. These infringements on workers’ rights and low levels of employment contribute to the poverty in developing countries. Canada also has an amazing education system. Our government pays for quality education from primary to secondary school. In most Third World countries people have to pay for their children to go to school. In Kenya there are public schools with free education but the education content is substandard. Thus people with little money are forced to pay for their children to attend quality schools. As a result, lots of people don’t graduate and fail to get good paying jobs to support their families. We are quick to criticize Canada’s education system but compared to others, we have it good.

Through our education we have many opportunities to progress in life and ladder in careers. We should be thankful that in Canada we have access to clean water and sanitation. In Kenya, we sometimes had to sanitize and boil water before we could drink it. Without clean water and sanitation there are higher rates of death due to disease. Have you ever heard of someone dying from diarrhea in Canada? Yet deaths due to diarrhea are a very common plight in developing countries. Evidently running water and f lushing toilets are luxuries in Third-World countries. Clean water and sanitation should be available for all people; it’s a basic health issue. People living in Canada are very fortunate. We often lose sight of how much we have been given. Whether it’s our workers’ rights, education system, or clean water and sanitation, we have a lot to be grateful for. It wouldn’t hurt to be less aff luent and more generous with all that we have received. Then others could be more fortunate, eh?

No more three-hour classes! Abijah Gupta Ω Contributor

It’s five in the evening and I’m heading to my three-hour class. Two hours later, I find myself barely understanding the professor’s lecture and instead of note taking, doodling on my notebook. But I have the book and other printed notes; I even had coffee! Why can’t I concentrate all of a sudden? The ‘lost’ feeling wasn’t new; I had felt it before. Until recently I presumed the variation in enthusiasm and attention for a three-hour class was seasonal: more in summer and less in winters. I later thought maybe the time of the class made a difference. However two semesters later, I believe there should be no threehour classes at all. I wouldn’t dare to undermine a professor’s lecture preparation, regardless of the duration; however, I would argue the actual benefits to students if any of such an arrangement. Agreed, a three-hour, once-

a-week class would equal more time on other days, but is it worth it? A student generally concentrates heavily in the first half of the class. The second half, however, is more or less a drag with focus spiraling down. What about the material covered in that class? If a student were to fall sick, it would mean missing an enormous amount of material. Is the disadvantage limited only to absentees? Time paucity frequently leads to teachers rushing through as much material as possible. What about the slow learners? Many introductory courses lay the foundation for other major courses; grasping concepts is vital. Students find reviewing discussed topics beneficial in preparing for the next class, primarily since it creates queries leading to doubt clarification later on. However, in this case the student has no choice but to absorb everything being taught.

So what would be a feasible solution to this problem? Splitting the class into two two-hour classes works well. In my current semester, a certain class follows this pattern. This not only gives me time to absorb the material, but also allows reviewing. If splitting the class is not possible, frequent 10-minute breaks every 45 minutes could help students unwind and bring back focus. If possible, reducing the syllabus could substantially reduce pressure on both teachers and learners. My girlfriend says, “I appreciate my three-hour long [Chemistry] lab sessions, but when it comes to lectures, nothing makes me happier than having short ones with spare time to review.” I advocate discontinuing long classes and replacing them with the shorter arrangements. I am certain that such an implementation would not only boost attention levels but also give time to ponder over the material covered.

Do you have something to say? If we keep getting open letters, we can keep a letter section. Send them to editor@truomega.ca (but be patient, please).

Mobile phone carrier oligopoly in Canada Anum Sultan

television Telecommunications Commission (CRTC). To make matters worse, these The Canadian economy is a companies have mutual noncompetitive deals to keep the incapitalistic one. It is based on the principals f lated price of a service that has that open competition encour- no direct cost. It’s high time for either the fedages fair pricing and consumer eral government or the CRTC to benefits. Competition drives the prices intervene and clean up the mess down — this was the promise of these corporations have created. Issuing more licenses and tax capitalism. The principal was not quite breaks to eager private players applicable to telecommunication could be a good beginning. Another step towards having companies especially cell phone economical plans is a certain carriers in North America. According to a study done by price cap or a minimum plan for JD Power, consumer satisfaction people who don’t want useless features on for Canadian their phones. cell phone usReducing ers is a little the contract over 60 per ter m to 12 cent. or 28 months The report instead of also said that 36 would be average conwelcomed as sumer spendwell. ing has incarricreased over —JD Power study, 2012 ersSmall such as and the years and Wind Mobile is now almost should be encouraged to make $70 per month. This makes Canada one of their networks stronger and bigthe most expensive countries in ger. The cell phone companies which to own a mobile phone. While the cell phone compa- demonstrate the current situation nies are making higher profits as perfectly normal and highly every year, the consumer satis- competitive. The companies try to resist any faction level is not up to the mark. There could be several reasons change or restriction. Excuses such as ‘high cost of for that, but the main one is carrier oligopoly or lack of proper installing cell phone towers’ are given but that is a one time fixed competition. The whole telecommunication expense. Running costs of the pipes in Canada are owned, oper- cell phone companies is almost ated and controlled by just three nothing. The telephone industry is no corporations namely Bell Mobility, Rogers Wireless and Telus different from any other, so it Mobility. This number is even must not be given any special lower than the American sce- perks or benefits. It should be exposed to free nario where there are fore major competition as every other. carriers. Consumers should get the valTogether these companies have more than 90 per cent of all cell ue of service for which they’re phone customer shares of Cana- paying for and if the steps writdian wireless subscribers, ac- ten are undertaken they might cording to the Canadian Radio- help reach that final goal.

Ω Contributor

Average consumer spending on cell phones has reached $70 per month

Up All Night plays Heroes as part of the Wednesday night concert series. A new wrinkle in the programming has the “opening act” of the Wednesday night shows opening the stage up to musicians who would like to perform in an “open mic”-type situation. Bring your own instruments if you’d like to take part starting at 6:30 p.m.

—PHOTO BY BRENDAN KERGIN


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The Omega · Volume 22, Issue 12

Life & Community Sun Peaks opens gates for winter season

Faculty and students come together over a pint

Travis Persaud and Mason Buettner Ω Contributors

Opening day is a special day for avid skiers and snowboarders. It is the day they have anxiously been waiting for since the end of the previous riding season, a day when skiers and boarders come together to celebrate the new season and to reconnect with old friends. “Opening weekend is more like a social reuniting,” said Christopher Nicolson, president of Tourism Sun Peaks. “Many people have summer social networks and winter social networks … your winter friends, in many cases you might see only once or twice throughout the summer,” Nicolson adds. He continued to compare skiers and snowboarders to hibernating bears with the seasons reversed. TRU students and Sun Peaks have a long history together as it is the closest mountain resort to Kamloops. Students are able to get away from the hustle and bustle of everyday student life to spend some time skiing or boarding at Sun Peaks. “Certainly TRU is a big part of Sun Peaks throughout the year, both from people being hired from TRU to just coming up and enjoying skiing and sliding around the mountain,” Nicolson said. In tune with tradition, opening day played host to a select few who eagerly showed up before the rest in hopes of landing a spot on the coveted first chair of the season. Among those eager few was TRU tourism management student David White. White and

Mason Buettner Ω Contributor

TRU tourism mangement student David White (black jacket and ball cap) is one of the first four on the lift opening day at Sun Peaks this season.

—PHOTO BY TR AVIS PERSAUD

the three others who secured a spot on the first chair up had been in line for more than two hours before the chair started running. Despite the less than ideal weather conditions preceding opening weekend, Sun Peaks was able to open four runs. Relying less on mother nature for the f luffy stuff and more on the combination of cold weather and snowmaking technology, Sun Peaks still managed to get a jump on the season. The resort operated the Sunburst Express and Elevation chairs to serve Cahilty, Lower 5 Mile and OSV. Feeding into the village, Sunbeam and the Village Carpet lift were open providing resort goers with beginner terrain as a suitable learning grounds for first-timers before heading up the Sunburst Express on to bigger and better things.

As for terrain park features, the resort afforded riders of all abilities with a short, wide f latbox option along with a f lat tube that had the feel of a backyard set-up as a opposed to a resort feature. The features made for some fun sliding, whetting the appetite of the local park rats who ate up the features in the afternoon after spinning laps on the Sunburst Express and Elevation lost its appeal. Nearing the end of the afternoon, the weather took a turn for the worse in the village as it began to rain heavily. The true diehards were revealed as the opening-day crowd tapered off with the change in weather. For those that remained, not even being soaked through outerwear could wipe the smiles off their faces. Besides, the true diehards know that rain in the village almost always means snow at higher elevations on the mountain.

could not let such hate deter them. The demonstration concluded with angels descending upon the steps of the University Centre, and began to surround the Westboro Baptist Church’s group, blocking them off from the public while circling them. This re-enactment is a dramatization of what happened in 1998 when the protest occurred while Matthew Sheppard, a young gay man, was hospitalized after being beaten to near death by individuals who were against his sexual orientation. Sheppard succumbed to his injuries in hospital. “The Westboro Baptist Church came from another state to protest Matthew Sheppard’s funeral to say he was going to hell because he was gay,” Danielle Irvine, the Memorial instructor for the class, said regarding the protest. “The angels and their wings are so big that they block [Phelps] out so that they don’t have to see him,” continued Irvine, explaining the significance of the event. “The angels were given earplugs so they didn’t have to hear him. “We wanted to raise awareness of this problem and that hate is still happening today. People are still doing violent things to each other.”

Many students gathered to watch the re-enactment, with most of them reacting positively to the demonstration. “I thought it was awesome,” said Emma Smith, a fourth year at MUN. “I think what they are protesting and showing is a great message.” Smith also says that the demonstration was effective. “It got people’s attention. People dressed as white angels, and I got worried they started chanting ‘God hates fags’ and thought ‘oh shoot, what’s going on?’ But then I started listening to the other girl’s monologue.” Not all students understood the goal of the event, as to whether it was for promotion, protest, or for something else. “I believe it had an effect, but I have no idea if they accomplished their goal because I don’t even know what it is,” said Christian Van Nostrand, a fourth-year student at MUN. The class that helped organize the demonstration will be performing The Laramie Project, a play based on the death of Matthew Sheppard and the reactions of his fellow citizens later this month.

The third-annual Philosophy, History and Politics (PHP) Beer Conference was held on Tuesday, Nov. 13 at Frick and Frack Tap House. Approximately 100 TRU faculty and students attended the fundraiser, raising money for the Philosophy, History, and Politics Undergraduate Conference in January 2013. The topics of discussion for the night were the philosophy, history, and politics of beer. TRU professors Jeff McLaughlin, Ariane Magny and Nicholas Gammer provided entertainment for the evening with satirical presentations on the relationship between beer and their respective departments. Gammer began the presentations with his interpretation of the politics of beer. As the American presidential election occurred one week prior, Gammer discussed how beer affected voting patterns. “Heineken drinkers are strongly democratic,” Gammer said. He switched to Canadian politics asking the question, “How do Canadians define themselves through beer?” Beer is the highest selling alcoholic beverage in Canada, according to Gammer. “The beer industry in Canada does play a role in the Canadian identity crisis… Globalization of the brewing industry has seen major players in Canada acquired by or merged with foreign companies,” Gammer said.

Following the politics of beer, Magny presented the audience with her take on the history of beer, revealing some previously unknown insights into early historical leaders. “Alexander the Great drank because he was hot,” and, “Nero started boozing when he was 16,” Magny said. McLaughlin received many a laugh from the audience as he closed the evening’s presentations with his humourous take on the philosophy of beer. He believes that “beer is essential for doing good philosophy.” In typical philosophical fashion, he provided the listeners with deep truths about beer. “We get the English word beer from the German word beer, and the German word for beer is beer,” McLaughlin joked. He discussed the connection between beer goggles and finding the truth. “It’s easy to be drunk, but to be drunk at the right time, for the right reason, with the right person and the right intensity is what makes beer drinking brilliant,” McLaughlin said in closing his presentation. Following the presentations, the winning 50-50 ticket was picked and Dylan Robinson, the fundraising and events coordinator for the conference and TRUSU VP external, ended up with the winner and donated his money back to the conference fund. The sixth-annual Philosophy, History and Politics Undergraduate Conference is scheduled to take place Jan. 17 to 19, 2013, at TRU.

Students organize mock Westboro Baptist Church protest at Memorial

John Michael Bennett The Muse (Memorial) ST. JOHN’S (CUP) — At 12:43 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 16, a mock protest took place in the vein of the Westboro Baptist Church at Memorial University (MUN). The demonstration re-enacted the protest that took place surrounding the beating, and subsequent death, of Matthew Sheppard, a young gay man, in 1998. Staged by Spectrum, a LGBTQ choir, and students from a performance and communications media class at Memorial, the demonstration began with individuals holding up signs, while standing around one student who was acting as Fred Phelps, the head of the church. They soon began chanting, “God hates fags. God hates fags,” which was quick to draw the attention of passerbys. Off to the side were others holding three signs stating that the following was a demonstration and re-enactment, and should be viewed as such. The Fred Phelps character began a monologue, while another actor, off to the side, delivered a separate monologue, stating they

Jeff McLaughlin speaks to the supporters who came out to the third-annual Philosophy, History and Politics beer con ference Nov. 13 at the Frick and Frack Tap House.

—PHOTO MASON BUETTNER


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November 21, 2012

Arts & Entertainment

Overwerk works up Kamloops Matthew Pflugfelder Ω Contributor

Overwerk (Edmond Huszar), an up and coming DJ and producer from London, Ont., packed Cactus Jacks nightclub Nov. 16 with heavy bass lines and enticing melodies. Playing both his and covering other artists’ tracks the show really got the crowd going with a twohour set. Before his show Overwerk sat down for an email interview with The Omega. Ω: Can you describe your musical style? O: Electro-computer music infused with whatever is inspiring me in the moment. Usually pretty heavy but uplifting at the same time. Ω: What kind of artists influence you? O: The kind of artists that influence me are the ones that are honest and have integrity. Artists that are passionate about music, no matter the style, inspire me. Ω: How did people pick up your music? Through a label or Soundcloud? O: I just started releasing tunes on Soundcloud, that was it. Ω: How often are you touring? O: I’ve been working on my new EP, After Hours, so I’ve been more focused on production right now. Ω: What is your setup like? O: An iMac, Genelec monitors. I don’t use hardware, I don’t even use a midi keyboard. Ω: What is your preferred plug-in? O: My preferred plug-in? I tend not to stick to a single one, definitely not mas-

sive, I try and incorporate every new plug-in I find. Ω: Top five tracks at the moment? O: I don’t even listen to that much music. I don’t have a lot of time to explore what’s out there, but right now I’m listening to Flume’s new album. Flume is awesome. Ω: Do you have any side projects? O: When I have time, I work on other genres of music on the side. Aside from

music, I do lots of design, 3D & editing. Ω: How long does it typically take you to write a song? O: Sometimes I make a song in a couple days and others are drawn out for months. I build songs in segments, because I try to create diversity and make my songs a ride, rather than just looping sounds for the whole track. It depends how inspired I am/ if I have ideas beforehand.

—IMAGE COURTESY PAR ADIGM RECORDS

Don’t let the sun go down on KSO

Jess Buick

Ω Contributor Precise and f luid movement and an eruption of beautiful music exploded on Nov. 16 at the Sagebrush Theatre as the Kamloops Symphony Orchestra (KSO) and their guest artists Jeans ‘N Classics took the stage and began to play the timeless music of Elton John. The first set began with “Love Lies, Bleeding” and Jean Meilleur, the vocalist of Jeans ‘N Classics, gave the audience no doubt that he had the talent and range to belt out some of Elton’s classic songs such as “Rocket Man” and “Your Song.” Every track played could send shivers down your spine and bring forward feelings of nostalgia. The collection of big sound from the orchestra and the intimidating vocals was enough to bring one to tears on the track “Daniel.” The song choice didn’t include all of John’s biggest hits — the emphasis was on the heartfelt love songs — but each one of them was chosen for what would best be complimented by an orchestra — and they were. Jeans ‘N Classics would’ve been excel-

lent regardless, but the addition of an orchestra, and in the second set, the Kamloops Chorus Singers, added to the experience and created a sense of wonder. The chorus singers joined the stage at the beginning of the second set, where they opened with “Take Me to the Pilot,” which not only showed how much fun the audience was having, but how excited everyone on stage was — especially conductor Bruce Dunn who was clearly enjoying himself, dancing ever so slightly as his orchestra complimented the band so beautifully. “Tiny Dancer” was the third song played in the set, and all around you could hear happy people singing along to this touching and exciting beat. Being surrounded by the energy and power of sound, it’s hard not to completely immerse oneself in the music. “Circle of Life,” the theme track for Disney’s hit movie “The Lion King,” was arguably the highlight of the night. The closing song was one of Elton John’s smash hits “Don’t Let the Sun Go Down on Me,” an excellent track to end on, and an excellent display of why, if you haven’t or have never had the opportunity, go see the KSO.

Album review: Lap Dog Brendan Kergin

Canadian Music Corner Taylor Rocca

Ω Copy/Web Editor Firing off from Saskatoon, Sask., Gunner & Smith is a five-piece folk group created out of what was originally a solo folk act in lead singer and guitar man Geoff Smith. Formed in 2010, the group released Compromise is a Loaded Gun on Aug. 3, 2012, a six-song EP featuring “Strength of My Fathers.” The sound projected by the band is a bluesy-folk fusion. That being said, Gunner & Smith still works in some electric guitar for a heavier sound on tracks such as “Send Me Out.” “Send me out to find a way to prove my worth, show my strength,” cries Smith on the opening track,

Brendan Kergin

Ω Arts & Entertainment Editor Ron Sexsmith is a name any serious fan of music has heard of, but seems to languish outside any sort of popular recognition. While his music has never been very hook-y or full of whatever is popular at the time, his melodic style is bait of critics and regularly receives top comments from those who spend time listening to it. Filled with pianos, some string arrangements and slower rhythms, it’s easy to see why he’s never hit the top 40. The quiet, simple tracks may not be aggressive enough to garner

“Take my name and set it free. Cry not for them, cry not for me, cry for yourself to be at peace.” Prior to 2012’s Compromise is a Loaded Gun, the group released an earlier EP, Letter of Marque in November 2011. Gunner & Smith put on an energetic and lively stage performance, having just completed a short fall tour that featured the band’s first shows in Alberta. Apart from three shows in hometown Saskatoon, the Saskatchewan folksters also rocked stages in Edmonton, Calgary, Lethbridge and Moose Jaw. For a classic folk sound, make sure you give “Two Gun Blues” a listen as Gunner & Smith incorporate the banjo, an always pleasant addition to any great folk track. more notice. One positive for him though is the recognition he does get from well respected and more famous artists who then cover his material, like k.d. lang, Feist and Rod Stewart. However, while he enjoys the respect, Sexsmith has vocalized the fact he would appreciate a little more mainstream success. His strength as a songwriter isn’t just the music, he puts together full packages of lyrics and music and couples them like wine and cheese. For an example of this check out “Gold in Them Hills,” of which there are two versions, one with a fan, Chris Martin of Coldplay.

Ω Arts &Entertainment Editor The most prolific member of Vancouver hip-hop collective the Sweatshop Union (which he left in 2011), Kyprios is back to the mike on a five-song solo EP, a taste of what to come as he works on a project out in 2013, according to an interview with CBC Music. The winner of the 2010 Peak Performance Project has been quieter since his win, releasing only a couple of singles over the last couple of years, including the celebration of the Vancouver Canucks Stanley Cup run, “How the West Was Won.” On the Lap Dog EP he’s introduced four songs and included the 2011 single, “Sweet City Woman.” Over a decade into his career, the EP is a more mature series of songs than mainstream hip-hop. The music is fairly middleof-the-road; heavy on the keys, guitar and drums, light on electronics, with some sampling. It’s definitely got the more Canadian style of using sampling and instruments in place of computer based production. Lyrically, the themes explored are all over the map. The title track opens with Kyprios looking at his past and leadership. “Sweet City Women” is next, a revision of The Stampeders hit of the same name. A fairly straight forward song about a lady Kyprios is sweet on. Using the past hit as the hook creates a great patio track…if it were warmer out. “We Get Right” is brings an entirely different attitude, opening with Will, a homeless man in East Vancouver, discussing his

heroin dependency. After Will, it gets more positive from there; “We Get Right” puts the serious subject of addiction in an urgent piece of music. Wrapping up with social workers discussing their projects with the homeless makes this more a piece of activism than a marketable single. The stripped down, beat heavy, synthy “Ain’t Gonna Get Me,” worries about a “she” and “they” going to get Kyprios. It’s never made clear who they are, but he really seems certain they aren’t going to get him. It seems more of a place for some

word play and a more technical vocal track. He closes with the fun, Samuel L. Jackson sampling “Bad Motherf *cker.” More bombastic, aggressive and cheeky, Kyprios may be more mature, but it doesn’t mean he’s old. A solid preview of what the experienced MC is going to be bringing in the new year, it shows there’s a sharp mind behind the mike, but he’s still having fun. Kyprios will be touring Canada soon, with a date at Cactus Jacks on Nov. 29.

—IMAGE COURTESY CLASSICS AGENCY


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The Omega · Volume 22, Issue 12

Arts & Entertainment

Visual arts seeks nude models Film review: The Man Courtney Dickson Ω Roving Editor

The visual arts department at TRU recently posted an ad for a racy career opportunity. Lloyd Bennett, chair of the visual and performing arts department, used to find male models at the gym. Three years ago, human resources made the visual arts department post job opportunities formally on the school’s website. “Last year, faculty had a list of five to seven models to choose from. This year when an instructor needed a model, we had no one,” Bennett said. Following an interview on CBC Radio regarding nude models, more people came looking for work. Though the job posting indicates applicants should have at least three months of related experience, Bennett said anyone interested in modelling should “simply be personable.” Models are not expected to be nude. Bennett has purchased costumes and allowed men he met at the gym to wear shorts. Models pose for as little as five seconds, but could be there for up to three hours. Models are provided breaks and the department will bring in a heater if the model is chilly. “Models are very important and well-respected by artists,” Bennett said. “It is an honourable profession.” Drawing or painting nude models is considered basic training for visual arts students. Having a variety of bodytypes to choose from is important. As far as Bennett is aware, no student has ever refused to draw someone nude. If this became an issue, faculty would accommodate the student’s wish. Kate Beauchamp is a TRU alumni and a nude model for the visual arts department. She applied for the position when her mother came across a job posting and suggested that it would

be a good way for Beauchamp to earn some extra money. She applied to model last year, however, this is the first semester she has been specially requested by faculty to fill the role as a model on multiple occasions. “It isn’t a complicated job, but it can be challenging to stay still for so long,” Beauchamp said. “It’s a neat experience.” Beauchamp said she chose to apply

to model because she wanted to try something that would “push the envelope.” “North America is still closed minded towards nudity,” Beauchamp said. Many of the models are former arts students, according to Bennett. “People who have backgrounds of drawing nude models are used to it.” Bennett asked that those interested apply through career opportunities on the TRU website.

With the Iron Fists Brendan Kergin

Ω Arts & Entertainment Editor As much a stylistic audio-visual piece as an action-packed homage to kung fu films past, The Man With The Iron Fists walks the line between enjoyably over the top and just straight forward over the top. RZA, of rap super-group the Wu Tang Clan, tries his hand at acting, scripting and directing in this period piece set in China during…the 19th century probably? It’s never entirely clear and the date isn’t entirely relevant. In fact, much of the film relies not on logic, or common sense, or what should happen, but rather on what would be cool. It should be noted here that RZA and coproducer/co-writer Eli Roth, are friends and oft collaborators of Quentin Tarantino (who “presented” the film, which amounts to little direct involvement). The setting is the Jungle Village, a rough town in China, where the majority of the characters are Asian but speak with American accents. The town is run by a variety of clans based on animals, the most powerful being the Lions, the central clan of the film. A shipment of gold is sent through the notorious locale to soldiers in the north and the story follows the plots and battles for said gold. While the list of baddies and goodies is extensive, the central plot is straight forward with most of the build-up to the battles dealing with character’s back story.

The favourite son of an assassinated clan leader out for vengeance, the travelling secret government soldier, the greedy clan leaders, they all end up on one side of good or evil and fight the other. The strength of the film lies in its aesthetic value. So many of the visual details were planned out and designed by RZA and Roth. Costumes are intricate character representations with unique weapons matching their personalities and fighting styles. Of course, the super choreographed fight scenes are another highlight. While many film fights can seem chaotic, uncertain messes, The Man With The Iron Fists hand-to-hand combat is easy to follow with great camera work. Despite the great aesthetic value, the plot is f limsy. While the characters are supposed to be one-dimensional caricatures to an extent, there isn’t one character to cheer. The fact someone lives or dies lacks impact to an indifferent audience. There are also some pretty big jumps in plot, though this could be due to the original version being four hours long. The editing could be stronger as well, with some odd choices at points, but it shouldn’t distract theatre-goers too much since they are never fully drawn in. Fans of films from Hong Kong will enjoy this. The mash-up rap/kung fu/western is appealing, but cinephiles will note it lacks any real grip.

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November 21, 2012

Sports WolfPack women grab fourth at soccer nationals Adam Williams Ω Sports Editor

The Wolf Pack women’s soccer team came back from the Canadian Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) Nationals in Prince Edward Island with their second consecutive fourth place finish last week. The Wolf Pack lost to the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology (NAIT) Ooks of Edmonton, Alta. in the bronze medal final by a score of 1-0. It was an up and down week for the Wolf Pack, who were forced to play under less than ideal circumstances. The team arrived in Charlottetown at 3:30 a.m. on Nov. 6, after almost 24 hours of travel, which involved three f lights and a two and a half hour bus ride. The team was understandably tired when their first game against the Indiennes d’Ahuntsic kicked-off at 10:00 a.m on Nov. 7. “We went out and played, did well for the first 60 minutes and then we started to fade,” said head coach Tom McManus. “At about 63 minutes we hit the wall and they scored three goals within nine minutes. So there was nothing we could do about that, I was putting fresh players in hoping to get fresh legs but it just

didn’t work.” The ‘Pack went on to lose by a final score of 4-0 and had their hopes of a gold medal dashed. They later won in the bronze quarterfinal against the Mount Saint Vincent University Mystics by a score of 1-0 and defeated the Cégep Garneau Élans, the best team in the country, by a score of 4-0 in the bronze semifinal. “The coach [of the Indiennes d’Ahuntsic] came up to me after we played Garneau, shook his head and said, ‘Boy, I’m glad we got you when you were tired, that was phenomenal,’” McManus said. “Like I said, I’ve never seen anyone play Garneau like that, or beat Garneau by that many goals. Every coach there was just amazed by how we did.” Dreams of a podium finish were not to come true either, as the Wolf Pack were defeated in the bronze medal game by the NAIT Ooks on Nov. 10. NAIT scored just nine minutes into the game and spent the rest of the match sending the ball deep or out of bounds. The situation was made more difficult by winds blowing across the field, at times topping 80 kilometres per hour. For Alanna Bekkering, it was disappointing to come home with another fourth-place finish this year, regardless of the individual honours she received. Bekkering

and teammate Blair MacKay were both named CCAA All-Canadian athletes. In a previous interview with The Omega, Bekkering cited All-Canadian honours as one of the last individual accomplishments she hoped to achieve in her varsity career. “It was really cool,” Bekkering said. “It’s an awesome honour, especially with the amount of talent that’s on our team.” Bekkering and MacKay are close friends off the field and sharing the experience of being named All-Canadians gave the award special significance. “That was the most exciting moment, it was more exciting than me actually getting called up there,” Bekkering said. “[Blair] was so deserving of it and what an awesome way to go out in your fifth year.” The season is now officially over for the Wolf Pack, but they will now begin their work off the field in preparation for next season. The team will begin workouts and a running program in mid-January and McManus will work to incorporate indoor practices and exhibition matches as the year wears on. “I’m looking to really get this program going 10 months of the year, 11 months of the year,” McManus said. “We want to continue to pump and have our program

Another disappointing weekend for WolfPack volleyball Courtney Dickson Ω Roving Editor

Both the men’s and women’s WolfPack volleyball teams fell at the hand of the University of Alberta (U of A) this past weekend. TRU was unable to win a single set, losing 3-0 in all four matches. The U of A Pandas went into the weekend sitting in third place in Canada West. The WolfPack was mired in last place. The first two sets of the women’s match were over quickly as the U of A took a 25-7 win and continued to dominate, winning 25-10 in the second. The WolfPack pulled ahead for the first time in the match at the beginning of the third set. That didn’t last long as the Pandas quickly overtook TRU and didn’t look back, triumphing 28-26. Already courting a small roster, the WolfPack women have three players out

with injury, a fact that has not helped the team through its early season struggles. Hayley Hills, assistant coach of the WolfPack, said the women’s team was over-thinking during the first two sets. “The U of A has a good squad,” Hills said. “Our girls were intimidated.” Hills thought the women improved in the third set and she was hoping for the same focus Saturday evening. Though the men had a slightly better match, they were also unable to defeat the Golden Bears. U of A came into the match as the number one seed in Canada West while the WolfPack sat in the bottom half of the conference. The Golden Bears have been league leaders in kills and hitting percentage this season. The match was a struggle for both teams, resulting in another three-set loss for the WolfPack. Jared Mitchell who is red-shirted this

year, has been practicing with the team. Despite the losses, he noticed his teammates putting to use what they have been learning at practice. “As I see it, we can only improve from here,” Mitchell said. Pat Hennelly, in his seventh season as head coach of the men’s team, was not pleased with the WolfPack’s mental game on Nov. 16. “We didn’t play particularly well,” Hennelly said. “U of A wasn’t sharp, either.” Hennelly also said the team will need to control their emotions and focus if they want to see an improvement on the court. Both teams again lost all three sets on Saturday, wrapping up a weekend of disheartening defeat for the WolfPack volleyball program. Next weekend both teams will head out on the road to face the University of Manitoba in Winnipeg.

Kristen Giesbrecht #7 goes up for the attack against the U of A Pandas Nov. 16 at the TCC.

—PHOTO BY COURTNEY DICKSON

The WolfPack women’s soccer team wins the PACWEST two years in a row, but was hoping not to repeat their fourthplace finish nationally.

—PHOTO COURTESY TRU ATHLETICS

be one of the best around.” McManus is already in the thick of recruiting players for the next season and says no roster spot is guaranteed. As was the case this year, players will earn their roster spots based on who comes to tryouts the most prepared and in the best shape, even veterans won’t be guaranteed to play. The Wolf Pack will have a strong contingent of returning players. McManus will look to

replace the McAuley sisters and Blair MacKay, but in theory the team should continue their dominance of the PACWEST conference. Bekkering and the rest of the returning squad hope to get another shot at a national championship moving forward and the sting of this year’s result is sure to keep them motivated. “Fourth place in Canada is still awesome,” Bekkering said, “but I know that all of us were hoping for a medal.”

WolfPack Scoreboard Volleyball Men’s 3-0 L vs University of Alberta Golden Bears 3-0 L vs University of Alberta Golden Bears

Basketball Men’s 91-81 L vs Mount Royal University Royals 89-80 W vs Mount Royal University Royals

Women’s 3-0 L vs University of Alberta Pandas 3-0 L vs University of Alberta Pandas

Women’s 77-54 W vs Mount Royal University Royals 66-58 W vs Mount Royal University Royals

Hockey 8-2 W vs Eastern Washington University Eagles 4-3 OTL vs Eastern Washington University Eagles


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The Omega · Volume 22, Issue 12

Coffee Break

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58. “Calm down!” 62. Brown, for one 63. Adhesive 64. Bait 65. Pipe joint 66. Gas additive 67. Challenges Down 1. Lite 2. Interstice 3. Afternoon service 4. Cause for a lawsuit 5. D.C. setting 6. It doesn’t hold water 7. Carry on 8. Road shoulder 9. ___-tzu 10. Oozes 11. Chief administrative officers 12. Cause of inflation? 13. Discouraging words 18. Furrow maker 19. Remain unused 24. Set aside 25. California’s San ___ Bay 26. Elder, e.g. 27. Pitching stats 29. Maori war dance 30. Rings up? 33. ___ the town 34. 100 kurus

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November 21, 2012

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