kottke.org posts about Canada

Canada is getting rid of the pennyApr 03 2012

In a move certain to impact jokes about Canadian stereotypes for years to come, our neighbors to the north are jettisoning the penny. One hopes the United States co-opts this move, because it will be as good for us as Michael J. Fox, Wayne Gretzky, and poutine.

Here is noted penny adversary CPG Grey with more information on the move.

Canada is seeing a small influx ofMar 24 2008

Canada is seeing a small influx of American deserters who would rather not serve in Iraq.

Most of them, like Colby, say they joined the military in part out of patriotism. "I thought Iraq had something to do with 9/11," Colby says, "that they were the bad guys that attacked our country." But unlike Hinzman, most did not apply for conscientious-objector status. They tend to say they aren't opposed to all wars in principle -- just to the one they were ordered to fight. It wasn't until Colby arrived in Iraq that he started to see the conflict as "a war of aggression, totally unprovoked," he says. "I was, like, 'This is what my buddies are dying for?'

The Canadian government will soon decide whether or not to let those soldiers apply for citizenship on the basis that the conflict in Iraq is "a war not sanctioned by the United Nations".

The oil sands of Alberta have createdJan 31 2008

The oil sands of Alberta have created an oil boom in the Canadian province.

And how much oil is there? Estimates bounced around for years until 1999, when Alberta got serious about determining its potential. Based on data from 56,000 wells and 6,000 core samples, the Energy and Utilities Board (EUB) came up with an astonishing figure: The amount of oil that could be recovered with existing technology totalled 175 billion barrels, enough to cover U.S. consumption for more than 50 years. With the new math, Canada slipped quietly into second place behind Saudi Arabia's 265 billion barrels in oil reserves, followed by Iran and Iraq.

Edward Burtynsky took some photos of the oil sands to accompany the piece. (thx, marshall)

Update: VBS.tv did a report on the oil sands as part of the Toxic Series. Elizabeth Kolbert wrote about the oil sands for the New Yorker late last year; unfortunately only an abstract of the article is available online. (thx, meg, ben, sanj, and greg)

BIRD FLU DANCE WATCH! A flyer forJun 07 2006

BIRD FLU DANCE WATCH! A flyer for a talent show in Ontario says the show will feature "a live performance of Dainty Crime's hit song 'BIRD FLU' by 1 DANCE and SAMPLE KING". As I understand it, reggae/dancehall has a sizeable following in Canada. Could the outbreak of the so-called Jamaican strain of the bird flu dance have originated in Canada?

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