Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Fwd: Daily Digest January 15, 2014

Sent from my BlackBerry® PlayBook™

From: "Joe Hueglin" <phoenix.rising@bellnet.ca>
To: "CANADIAN DAILY DIGEST" <phoenix.rising@bellnet.ca>
Sent: 15 January, 2014 12:07 AM
Subject: Daily Digest January 15, 2014

ARCHIVED at http://cdndailydigest.blogspot.com/



>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>HEADLINES ACROSS CANADA<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<

CBCRritish Columbia »Calgary Edmonton »Saskatchewan» Manitoba» Thunder Bay» Sudbury » Windsor » Kitchener-Waterloo Hamilton Toronto »Ottawa Montreal »New Brunswick Prince Edward Island Nova Scotia »Newfoundland & Labrador

North CTV Atlantic  CTV Montreal  CTV Ottawa  CTV Toronto  CTV Northern Ontario  CTV Kitchener CTV Winnipeg  CTV Regina
CTVSaskatoon  CTV Calgary  CTV Edmonton  CTV British Columbia


Mother fights to stop more teens from selling sex online

         Baird begins U.S. trip by meeting with Keystone pipeline allies
Planned changes to Alberta's public pensions
         Pension changes will lead to gutting: unions
Harm reduction ban lifted in Abbotsford
         Ottawa must produce residential school docs
Diluted bitumen sinks when mixed: study
         Toronto clinics fined in insurance fraud
Robert Pickton appears in court by video
         GTA mayors to meet on ice storm cleanup

BC mother, uncle accused in 'honour' killing
         Two flu deaths reported in London area
Sex offender from Canada pleads guilty in US
         Arrested reporter's family frustrated at Ottawa
No pressing need to kill deficit: experts Charter of values: Quebec won't back down
         Sudbury cop hurt trying to give sobriety test
Natural disasters pushed up federal spending, could rise in future: PBO
         Minister wants university strike resolved

Harm reduction ban lifted in Abbotsford
         Nova Scotia launches wine, beer consultations
GO trains resume on Barrie line after death
         Bidding begins on coveted wireless spectrum
Supporters of man missing in Mexico say help needed
         TV cord cutters not making a big impact
Police search for missing Whitby jogger, 52
         Bidding begins on coveted wireless spectrum
Burns Lake families expected charges
         1 dead, 4 injured in Mississauga crash

Avalanche triggers slide, blocking highway
         Pharmacists running out of flu vaccine
Tories seek outside auto trade consultant
         BC woman killed over marriage: Crown
Soldier says Air Canada refused her service dog
         Wolverines discovered on B.C. coast
Jamaica police probe Canadian woman's slaying
         Corruption probe focusing again on labour group
SIU called after man injured in Oshawa
         Focus on person in crisis:Rights commissioner

Alberta leads landscape disruption: study

Minimum wage in Canada: One woman's story
         Quebec secular charter hearings set to begin
TSB recommendation to equip trains with voice recorders stalled
         CBSA investigates claim 26 foreign workers were forced to share home
Army commander promises discipline against media leaks
         Harper government spent $2.5M on ads for non-existent Canada Job Grant
Neil Young responds to PMO's defence of oilsands

         Clement pays back taxpayers for 2nd set of gold business cards
Tories cancel plan to hire trade advisor to help auto industry
         Wind withdrawal throws wrench in Ottawa's wireless plans

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>The Tyee<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<
How is climate change reshaping your future?
Leading thinkers in tech, business, politics and nature
share what they know at this FREE Tyee Solutions Society event on Jan. 22.
A Fresh Fix for Unsafe Water on First Nations Reserves
        UBC students craft a blueprint for a healthy, reliable supply, collaboratively.
Canada's Slide into Sleaze with Harper as CEO
        Or, the problem of running government like a business. By Murray Dobbin
Nation's Library Advocate Raises Questions about Federal 'Culling'
        Canadian Library Association disturbed by closures, wants proof digitizing is happening.
Carbon Footprint of BC LNG Boom Could Rival Oilsands
        That is, if the province's natural gas riches are developed as planned. But there's another way.
Tyee Poll: Should tobacco be a controlled substance?

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>Vancouver Observer<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<
5 day countdown! Please pledge now to Tar Sands Reporting Project Kickstarter campaign
        Join 335 people who've pledged and push the Tar Sands Reporting Project to its stretch goal in the last 6 days of the campaign.
Oil-by-rail industry in North America begins 2014 with another spectacular crash
        The oil-by-rail industry in North America is growing by leaps and bounds, with frightening consequences for public safety and for the planet's climate.
Amid deportation fears, Indigenous Lost Canadian struggles to gain citizenship
        No birth certificate, no identification papers, no citizenship. A father worries about the future of his life in Canada.
Despite rejecting Northern Gateway, is the BC government doing everything in its power to enable it?
        Province already extending licenses and permits to Enbridge for proposed Northern Gateway pipeline.
Burnaby coal train derailment sparks questions about safety
        Three CP Rail cars carrying coal tipped over and went off the CN railway tracks near Burnaby Lake on Saturday morning. No one was injured, but the contents spilled out, with some coal...


Toronto exploring summer Olympics bid for 2024
         Wolves baited by photographers, Banff officials believe
Is this man walking in a blizzard, or is the blizzard walking him?
         Right-wing think-tank report suggests 'living wages' do little to help the poorest
Ancient fossil shows evolution of fins to feet on Ellesmere Island
         Tom Flanagan to speak at conservative conference that rebuked him last year
Inquest into police shootings missing the main problem
         Harper confirmed for 'Three Amigos' summit
Audit finds 'gaps' in military daycare, health services
         Events to commemorate world wars won't hamper military operations, Fantino says
Federal government's proposed branding strategy for Canada still a work in progress

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>HUFFINGTON POST<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<

2002 Harper Wouldn't Be Happy With 2014 Harper
         Army Commander Threatens Soldiers Over Media Leaks
Budget Watchdog: Federal Spending Up Slightly
         'Why Are You Getting So Upset?'
Canada 'Deeply Concerned'
         Tories Spent $2.5 Million Advertising For Non-Existent Program
Fractured Tory Ranks Harder For Harper To Hold Together
         Stop Pretending Pot Prohibition Protects Kids
Toews Turns Lobbyist
         Buying Byelection?

Canadian Cardinal Condemns Quebec Values Charter
         More Than A Photo-Op?
Toronto Now Wants To Be Declared 'Disaster Area'
         Seeking Provincial, Federal Money
Military's Response To String Of Suicides A 'Cold Comfort': Families
         Tories Axe Plush Free-Trade Guru Gig
Byelections Set To Be Called?
         He Promises To Create 1 Million Jobs
Alberta's The Champ.. Of Destroying Pretty Things
         Hijab-Wearing Woman Attacked In Quebec Organizes Protest

Misleading Job Grant Ads Fell On Deaf Ears Anyway: Survey
         Poll Suggests Canadians Prefer Him For Prime Minister
Lawyers May Be In For An Easy Ride

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>YAHOO NEWS<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<

Recent PTSD case shows increasing value of service animals as treatment option
         Are cabbies to blame when discharged hospital patients die on their own doorsteps?
Human rights complaint launched to ban eggs and dairy from Ontario elementary school
         Baby Megatron? Canadian parents-to-be ask Internet to name their unborn daughter
If you work for a living, do you deserve to earn a living wage?
         New report highlights Stephen Harper's changing tune on ad spending

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>BOURQUE NEWS<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>NATIONAL NEWSWATCH<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<

Decades ago, we should have listened to Joe Clark
         Young sings off-key on oilsands
Keep on talkin' in the free world
         Hypocrite Neil
Between a rock star and some hard facts
         Neil Young: Give him a break, he's doing oil sands a favour
Oilsands rant is getting old
         Ottawa's wireless policy shambles may still deliver tougher competition
Redford touts value of globe-trotting Tory MLAs
         Loonie's decline brings both joy and misery to B.C. business

AGs office won`t say if it will name names in unprecedented Senate audit

         Ottawa urged to look beyond oil in emergency response plans
Scale back aid for dual citizens, bureaucrats advise Ottawa
         Kathleen Wynne accused of trying to buy byelection in Niagara
Tories' call for more research on prostitution laws could be stalling tactic
         MP Dean Del Mastro's cousin's firm focus of Elections Canada raid

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>FOREIGN AFFAIRS<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>TerraViva Europe<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<
Chinese Dominance in Kenyan Digital Migration Raises Alarm
         Military Launches a Democratic Missile
Development Follows Devastation from Brazilian Dam
         Djotodia's Resignation Sparks Hopes for Peace in CAR
Jordan Valley Produces Conflicting Dates
         Racketeers Taking Aim at Chinese Entrepreneurs in Kyrgyzstan
Next Step in Uruguay: Competitive, Quality Marijuana
         U.N. Peacekeepers Overwhelmed in South Sudan
Wildlife Poaching Thought to Bankroll International Terrorism

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>The Real News Network<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<
AIPAC Still Trying to Torpedo Iran Nuke Deal
As preliminary Iran Nuke deal is finalized and set to go into effect next Monday, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee(AIPAC)
is pushing for Congress to pass new sanctions against Iran which would violate and likely nullify the historic agreement
         A True 'War on Poverty' Would Place Poor People at the Forefront
2013: A Deadly Year For Journalists
         Papantonio: Washington Gridlock A Blessing For The Rich
How Much Would You Pay To Kill A Lion?
         Obama\'s Controversial Death Squad Tactics In Afghanistan
Ariel Sharon\'s Dark Past: Was the now dead ex-Israeli Prime Minister responsible for the Sabra and Chatila massacres in Beirut?
         What is Fast Track and Why Does It Threaten Democracy

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>The European Union Times<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<
Russia Warns US-China-Japan Pacific War "Just Weeks Away" Source
        US House passed bill ravaging toxic-waste law on Virginia chemical spill day Source
Gold's Safe-Haven Role is Over, Or Is It? Source
        Warning issued in Western Australia over raging wildfires Source
Organized Freemasonry crime infiltrates key institutions in UK Source

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>Eurasian Review<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<

Future Of Egypt Rests In Its People's Hands – OpEd
         ICT Industry Requires More Skills To Take Off
Google To Buy Thermostat Maker Nest Labs
         Biden Says US Committed To Enforcing Iran 'Sanctions Architecture'
Growing Unrest As Protesters Try To 'Shut Down' Bangkok – OpEd
         India – Sri Lanka: Need For Specific Ministry To Address Fishing Issues – Analysis
The US' Surveillance Review Panel Report: An Assessment
         West Virginia Chemical Tests Improve But Water Still Undrinkable
Strong Quake Hits North Of Puerto Rico
         In The Shadow Of China: Vietnam's 'Green' Industry – OpEd

India Marks Three Years Since Last Reported Polio Case – Statement
         European Commission Investigates Restrictions Affecting Cross Border Provision Of Pay TV Services
Text Messaging Boosts Flu Vaccine Rates In Pregnant Women
         Evidence Found Of Harmful Effect Of Bisphenol A-Based Plastics
Mechanism Affecting Risk Of Prostate Cancer Found

         The Arab World: Trying Times Ahead – Analysis
South China Sea And The United States – Analysis
         Prepare For War In The East China Sea – Analysis
German-Sri Lanka Relations Built On Goodwill And Friendshi...

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>The Globalist<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<

Part I - India: Combating Poverty With Technology?
Part II - India's National ID: Trailing Pakistan
Japan Must Own Up to Past Actions
America's 50-Year War on Poverty
Electricity: Who's the Cleanest of Them All?
Gaza: Scenes of Human Tenacity
Ten Challenges Around the World in 2014
Guide to 2014: Global Issues
50 Years Ago: Lyndon Johnson's First Foreign Crisis
The Pitfalls of Renegotiating UK Membership Terms in the EU
Chinese Antarctic Rescue A Positive Signal

>>>>>>>>>>INFOS <<<<<<<<<<


Charte: Coderre persiste et signePlus
         Charte: Parent pour le congédiement des récalcitrantsPlus
Double meurtre à Gatineau: l'enquête transférée à la SQPlus
         Lavallée à la commission Charbonneau mercrediPlus
Un ex-comptable écope de trois ans de pénitencierPlus
         Lobbyisme: ouverture du procès du Dr Gaétan BarrettePlus
Chute de béton sur l'A40: la CAQ demande un plan d'urgencePlus
         Hollande traverse un moment «douloureux» Plus
Fusillade dans une école du Nouveau-MexiquePlus
         Coupes budgétaires: Harper refuse de donner l'heure justePlus

Jour de référendum constitutionnel en ÉgyptePlus
         Sort du crucifix: Drainville veut attendre la chartePlus
Accord au Congrès américain sur la loi de finances 2014Plus
         Transport ferroviaire: Montréal et le CN s'entendentPlus
Guy Turcotte: le mémoire en Cour suprême est déposéPlus
         Temps de réponse trop long: plus de moyens demandésPlus
Sécurité ferroviaire: la facture refilée aux consommateurs?Plus
         Il poursuit Nike pour un crime violent qu'il a commisPlus
Le PQ «tyrannise» les minorités, selon les jeunes libérauxPlus
         Pont de Québec: entente de 60 millions $ pour l'entretienPlus

Autoroute 40: un bloc de béton tombe sur une voiture Plus
         Accurso avait «ses entrées directes» à la SOLIMPlus
L'économie canadienne montre des signes positifsPlus
         «Permis de foncer» pour les espions britanniques

To: <letters@ottawacitizen.com>
Subject: Both PM Stephen Harper and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie should take full responsibility and step down

The Editor
The Ottawa Citizen
Both PM Stephen Harper and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie should take full responsibility and step down
Re "What Chris Christie should have said," by Andrew Coyne (Jan. 14).
Both Prime Minister Stephen Harper and New Jersey Governor Chris Christie said that they didn't know that their top political aides were misusing their powers, while engaged in partisan games. Mr. Harper fired his chief of staff, Nigel Wright, for writing a personal cheque of $90,000 to repay the overspending by Conservative Senator Mike Duffy (another Harper appointee). Likewise, Mr. Christie fired his deputy chief of staff, Bridget Anne Kelly, for orchestrating the closure of the George Washington Bridge connecting New Jersey with New York, to punish Democratic mayor of Fort Lee for not endorsing Mr. Christie in his re-election bid. Although Prime Minister Harper didn't apologize, Gov. Chris Christie did apologize in his two-hour-long press conference.
But this is not nearly enough. If Prime Minister Stephen Harper and Governor Chris Cristie didn't know what their own top aides were doing in their own offices, they are clearly incompetent and must step down. As a letter writer, Robert R. Salman, of Marlboro, N.J., so correctly wrote in the New York Times on Jan. 10: "All of the players thus far implicated in the scandal were appointed by and close to the governor. No amount of "apology" can alter the fact that he initially treated the lane closings as a joke and set the tone for the kind of conduct that he now claims to decry." Both Mr. Hareper and Mr. Christie should take full responsibility for their failures to supervise their top political aides and step aside. They must not get away by only blaming their own top advisers.

From: "Sandra Finley" <sabest1@sasktel.net>
Subject: China, cloned pig factory, BBC science report.

Have a bite of this!
China, cloned pig factory, BBC science report.
From: Larry Kazdan <lkazdan@gmail.com>
To: letters@nationalpost.com
Subject: Letter to Editor re:  Loonie drops below 92¢ as data reveals Canada's job growth in 2013 was the worst since the recession, Louise Egan, January 10,  2014

Re:  Loonie drops below 92¢ as data reveals Canada's job growth in 2013 was the worst since the recession, Louise Egan, January 10, 2014

If the Harper Conservatives were serious about job creation, they would not rely entirely on the whims of private sector hiring. In 1944, the Canadian unemployment rate dropped below 1 per cent because one out of every three adult males was engaged in military service and many private sector workers were fulfilling government contracts. As the British politician Tony Benn put it, "If you can have full employment by killing Germans, why can't we have it by building hospitals, schools, recruiting nurses and teachers? If you can find money to kill people, you can find money to help people."
In the 1970s the Liberal government experimented with direct job creation delivered through local organizations and citizen groups. The Local Initiatives Program successfully hired in areas such as arts and culture, recreation, tourism, research and protecting the environment. The federal government needs to reconsider these kinds of initiatives. With double-digit unemployment currently among youth, do we really want a generation of young people living without incomes, without job experience, and without an opportunity to contribute to society?
Subject: Letter to Editor re: Neil Young: 'Oilsands don't affect me, I drive an electric car', Jessica Hume, January 13, 2014

Re:  Neil Young: 'Oilsands don't affect me, I drive an electric car', Jessica Hume, January 13, 2014

According to the spokesman for the Prime Minister, even the lifestyle of a rock star relies on oil exports. The Harper government's concern for the lifestyle of rock stars is indeed touching. But if lifestyle maintenance is so important to the Conservatives, perhaps they will ensure that Canadian senior citizens continue getting their Old Age Pensions beginning at age 65, and receive their mail delivered to their front doors. 
To: letters@herald.ca
Subject: Letter to Editor re: Can the Conservatives bank on balanced books?, DAN LEGER,  January 13, 2014

Re:  Can the Conservatives bank on balanced books?, DAN LEGER,  January 13, 2014

According to economist John Kenneth Galbraith, "there is no merit at all in a policy that just balances income and outgo, none whatever."  Why?  Because the government's responsibility at the federal level is to manage the economy, and to do so it must act counter-cyclically.  If the economy is booming, the government has to reign it in through higher taxation or budget cuts, and must reverse these operations when times are sluggish.  Balancing the budget without regard to what is happening in the private sector, as currently practiced by the Harper Conservatives, is not the mark of fiscal prudence.  It is the mark of political expedience and financial illiteracy.  

From: Robert Ede
Subject: Fwd: Fw: Immigration - demographic projections - is that what you want?

Reality vs "nice & noble", centrally-planned, sounds-like-doing-good public policy
An interesting (American) perspective on immigration…much the same is happening in Canada
Video #1 ... by the census Numbers  -- are we helping ourselves?
Although this is American ..... is our Cdn policy on "legal" immigration any different?
Is this "sustainable growth"?
Is this the best way to "grow' taxpayers/ employment/ CPP contributors?
If we're not-really helping ourselves ....Are we helping the under-developed world?
Does it help "them" to attract their "most ambitious and industrious" citizens?
 VIDEO #2  -- Gumballs
Who's helping who?  Are we doing the "wrong thing" ...even if for the "right reasons"?
From: "S Booiman"
Subject: separation

In my circle here there is some small talk, however each time the subject comes up the same answer is there ``we worked for Manning
for 10 years and did go no where, what is the point``, I , the PC rail roaded an out of towner in to the riding after the merger of Alliance
and Prog,Con the WEST was lost again. Today he is nowhere, all he does is pouring coffee and come to BBQs but never speaks,such
was mentioned in the local editorial some weeks ago.  He brought Bill C-377 to the House, but in my feeling was a party job handed to
him, –With the Conservatives since 2006  there is no Natiional agenda.  
The younger generation is to busy with "we want"and does not care.My university graduated grand children have no interest
in politics to occupied making a living.
Subject:  14 in 2014 for a fair, democratic Canada

Indeed we have to many issues on the list, the sad part is after all those years
talking about it and demanding change about both bilingualism and multiculturalism,
we have been talking to a brick wall, Ottawa does not listen as it may offend KEBEC,
the force that is driving the country with the blackmail of "demands" as we just
saw on the EU Trade, Quebec was not consulted and went to Brussels to "demand"
their way. 
Take care,

From: Rebecca Gingrich
To: Joe Hueglin <joe.hueglin@bellnet.ca>
Subject: U.S. FATCA tax law catches unsuspecting Canadians in its crosshairs

Joe--Banks rule supreme across borders and our government does nothing to protect these people???  Since when do Canadians have to obey the USI??? 
Again people are being devastated by the banksters and our governments do nothing.  This young man was born here so therefore he is Canadian.  I wonder
if Iggy will be caught up in this???

All of us will be paying the banks for the work they`re doing for the Yankee Revenue Service -
Canadian banks to be compelled to share clients' info with U.S.
FATCA under fire from tax experts and Canadians
Subject: democracy in Canada???
Much needed government reform - the 'warm & fuzzy' version

Joe--this ruling by a Judge in 1990 should tell us what kind of 'democracy' we live in

 4)Accountability. If you really think your MP or MLA is representing you and are accountable to you then you should seek professional help. the complete lack of any accountability is evidenced in a higher court ruling form Alberta. The quote from the judge is incredulous in a society that is supposedly run by a government that represents the people. Justice E.A. Marshall, Justice of The Court of Queen's Bench of Alberta [MP Wilton Littlechild v. Citizens of Canada, Court of Queen's Bench ofAlberta Docket No. 9012000725, Dec 10, 1990] "I know of no legal duty on an elected representative at any level of government to consult with his constituents or determine their views. While such an obligation may generally be considered desirable, there is no legal requirement."
If that doesn't knock you off your chair you are probably a politician.
We need to enact a law that forces our representatives vote on our behalf as we all believe they should.
Right now, once elected, they can do anything they please and we have no recourse.
Subject: Free Trade Deals Like TPP and CETA Threaten National Sovereignty  DD

Joe--nothing to see here--move along??  But at the same time Harper's government has concerns about Nigeria's gay rights ruling? 
But then again we shouldn't be surprised--our government is raping Canada's sovereignty(for our own good) and that is ok??

Canada 'deeply concerned' over Nigeria's new anti-gay law, Baird says
Subject: The Political Parasites of Taxland

Joe--Stephen's blog article says it all about the taxes in Canada

From: Henry Atkinson
Subject: Begin forwarded message:

Subject: Fw: Buffalo NY News Article About Canadians

A n article posted in the Buffalo News by Gerry Boley .

Misconceptions in the United States about Canada are quite common. They include: there is always snow in Canada; Canadians are boring, socialists and pacifists; their border is porous and allowed the Sept. 11 terrorists through; or, as the U.S. Ottawa embassy staff suggested to Washington, the country suffers from an inferiority complex. With Canada Day and America's Independence Day just past, this is a great time to clarify some of these misconceptions and better appreciate a neighbour that the United States at times takes for granted.

With the exception of the occasional glacier, skiing in Canada in the summer just isn't happening. Frigid northern winters, however, have shaped the tough, fun-loving Canadian character. When it is 30-below, the Canucks get their sticks, shovel off the local pond and have a game of shinny hockey.

The harsh winters have also shaped Canadians' sense of humour. Canada has some of the world's greatest comedians, from early Wayne and Shuster, to Rich Little, Jim Carrey, Russel Peters, Seth Rogan, Mike Myers, Leslie Nielsen, John Candy, Martin Short, Eugene Levy and "Saturday Night Live" creator and movie producer Lorne Michaels.

The suggestion that Canadians are soft on terrorism is a myth. Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau backed down the Front de Liberation du Quebec terrorists during the 1970s. And the 9/11 Commission reported that terrorists arrived in the United States from outside North America with documents issued to them by the U.S. government. Likewise, the Canadians in Gander countered despicable terrorist acts with love and caring to their U.S. neighbours when planes were diverted there.

Americans glorify war with movies, but it is the Canadians who are often the real "Rambo." The Canadians are anything but pacifists and their history is certainly not dull. Be it on the ice or battlefield, this warrior nation has never lost a war that it fought in – War of 1812 (versus the United States), World War I, World War II, Korea and now Afghanistan. During the '72 Summit Series, Soviet goalie Vladislav Tretiak said, "The Canadians have great skills and fight to the very end."

In hunting the Taliban in Afghanistan, U.S. Commander and Navy SEAL Capt. Robert Harward stated that the Canadian Joint Task Force 2 team was "his first choice for any direct-action mission."

Contrary to Thomas Jefferson's 1812 comment that, "The acquisition of Canada will be a mere matter of marching," the wily Native American leader Tecumseh and Maj. Gen. Isaac Brock captured Brig. Gen. William Hull's Fort Detroit without firing a shot. The Americans never took Quebec and when they burned the Canadian Parliament Buildings at York, the White House was torched in retaliation.

Canada consolidated its status as a warrior nation during World War I battles at Vimy Ridge, Passchendaele, Somme and the Second Battle of Ypres, where soldiers were gassed twice by the Germans but refused to break the line. By the end of the war, the Canadians were the Allies' shock troops.

In the air, four of the top seven World War I aces were Canadians. Crack shots, the names William "Billy" Bishop, Raymond Collishaw, Donald MacLaren and William Barker, with 72, 60, 54 and 53 victories, respectively, were legendary. These were the original Crazy Canucks, who regularly dropped leaflets over enemy airfields advising German pilots that they were coming over at such and such a time, and to come on up. Bishop and Barker won the Victoria Cross, the highest award for gallantry.

The pilot who is credited with shooting down the Red Baron, Manfred von Richthofen, with a little help from the Australian down under, was not Snoopy but Roy Brown from Carleton Place, Ont.

During World War II, Winnipeg native and air ace Sir William Stephenson, the "Quiet Canadian," ran the undercover British Security Coordination under the code name Intrepid from Rockefeller Center in New York, as a liaison between Franklin Roosevelt and Winston Churchill. Stephenson invented the machine that transferred photos over the wire for the Daily Mail newspaper in 1922. Americans were not aware that the BSC was there or that it was stocked with Canadians secretly working to preserve North American freedom from the Nazis.

Also little known is that Intrepid trained Ian Fleming, author of the James Bond series, at Camp X, the secret spy school near Whitby, Ont. Five future directors of the CIA also received special training there. It is suggested that Fleming's reference to Bond's 007 license to kill status, his gadgetry and the "shaken not stirred" martinis, rumored to be the strongest in North America, came from Stephenson.

When Wild Bill Donovan, head of the U.S. OSS, forerunner of the CIA, presented Intrepid with the Presidential Medal of Merit in 1946, he said, "William Stephenson taught us everything we knew about espionage."

American military writer Max Boot wrote recently in Commentary magazine that Canada is a country that most Americans consider a "dull but slavishly friendly neighbour, sort of like a great St. Bernard." Boot needs to come to Canada, have a Molson Canadian and chat about Canadian history. He owes his freedom to Canucks such as Stephenson and the courageous soldiers and fliers of the world wars who held off the Germans while America struggled with isolationism.

Canadian inventions such as the oxygen mask and anti-gravity suit, the forerunner of the astronaut suit, allowed U.S. and other Allied fighter pilots to fly higher, turn tighter and not black out with the resulting G-force. The 32 Canadians from the Avro Arrow team helped build the American space program and were, according to NASA, brilliant to a man. The most brilliant, Jim Chamberlin, chief designer of the Jetliner and Arrow, was responsible for the design and implementation of the Gemini and Apollo space programs.

Although Canadians have had a free, workable medical system for 50 years, they are not socialists and there are not long lineups, as some politicians opposed to Obamacare suggest. This writer has had a ruptured appendix, hip replacement, pinned shoulder, blood clot, twist fracture of the fibula and broken foot, and in every case, there was zero cost to me. Canadians have and value a medical system for all Canadians that is free with minimal waits. That is not socialism; that is caring about fellow Canadians.

Americans may be surprised by the Canadian content in their life. Superman – "truth, justice and the American way" – was co-created by Canadian Joe Shuster, the Daily Planet is based on a Toronto newspaper, and the 1978 film's Lois Lane, Margot Kidder, and Superman's father, Glenn Ford, were both Canadians. The captain of the Starship Enterprise was Montreal-born William Shatner. Torontonian Raymond Massey played Abraham Lincoln in 1956. And as American as apple pie? Ah, no. The McIntosh apple was developed in Dundela, Ont., in 1811 by John McIntosh.  And Jeopardy's show host Alex Trebek is so smart !

Many of the sports that Americans excel at are Canadian in origin. James Naismith from Almonte, Ont., invented basketball. The tackling and ball carrying in football were introduced by the Canucks in games between Harvard and McGill in the 1870s. Five-pin bowling is also a Canadian game. Lacrosse is officially Canada's national sport, and hockey – well, Canadians ARE hockey. And Jackie Robinson called Montreal "the city that enabled me to go to the major leagues."

To make everyone's life easier, Canadians invented pablum, the electric oven, the telephone, insulin, Marquis wheat, standard time, the rotary snowplow, the snowmobile, plexiglas, oven cleaner, the jolly jumper, the pacemaker, the alkaline battery, the caulking gun, the gas mask, the goalie mask and many more.

Canadian inferiority complex? That is another myth. Never pick a fight with a quiet kid in the schoolyard. Never mistake quiet confidence for weakness. Many a bully has learned that the hard way. Canadians are self-effacing and do not brag. That does not mean we do not know who we are. We are caring but tough, fun-loving but polite and creative, and we share with each other and the world. Our history is exciting but we don't toot our horn. The world does that for us. This is the third year in a row that Canada has been voted the most respected country in the world by the Reputation Institute global survey.

Perhaps once a year around our collective birthdays, Americans can raise a toast to their friendly, confident neighbour in the Great White North.

Gerry Boley is a high school teacher, university lecturer and writer living in St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada