Fast & Curious: Short Takes on Random Things

Fast & Curious: Short Takes on Random Things

November 25, 2022

Comfort and Joy I have to tie up two loose ends from my coverage of Tuesday morning’s council meeting. After listening to—and approving—Destination Cape Breton’s funding request (which I covered in detail because opaque organizations spending oodles of public money are catnip to me— or would be, if I wereRead...

Fast & Curious: Short Takes on Random Things

Fast & Curious: Short Takes on Random Things

November 18, 2022

McKenna & Co I was going to call Brookfield Asset Management (BAM) a many-headed hydra but that’s the wrong metaphor, it is decidedly more of an octopus, with tentacles everywhere in everything—railroads, ports, real estate, nuclear power—but just one head, as the Southern Investigative Reporting Foundation reported back in 2013:Read More

Fast & Curious: Short Takes on Random Things

Fast & Curious: Short Takes on Random Things

October 28, 2022

Medicare-less As I noted in my unburied power lines story on Wednesday, I managed to stay better focused in my research this week, but I cannot spend hours reading old newspapers without occasionally getting distracted. Fortunately, I have Fast & Curious as a sort of catch-all drawer; a place forRead More

Westray: What If?

Westray: What If?

May 11, 2022

On Monday, we paused to remember the 26 men who died 30 years ago, when the Westray coal mine exploded in Westville, Nova Scotia. Westray is one of the low points in Canada’s history of patronage-driven job creation schemes and the failure of government to regulate corporate profit-seeking. Remembering thoseRead More

Pro-choice demonstration, Chicago 15 July 2019, (Photo by Charles Edward Miller, CC BY-SA 2.0 , via Wikimedia Commons)

Reflections on Roe v Wade

June 29, 2022

My initial reaction to the recent US Supreme Court decision rendering Roe v Wade unconstitutional and giving individual states the right to regulate abortion was, as it was for millions, anger at the fact that men had once again prevailed in depriving women of their right to decide whether orRead More

To My Contributors, With Thanks

To My Contributors, With Thanks

December 15, 2021

The Cape Breton Spectator would be a shadow of itself were it not for the work of its regular contributors, each of whom writes with such clarity and focus and passion that reading, editing and formatting their work counts among the best parts of my job. I can’t thank themRead More

Photo by Don Clarke

Finding Your Footing

April 27, 2022

Pathways to Employment community organization based in Sydney, is probably best known for its wood shop, laundry services and other programs that attempt to reintegrate disenfranchised people with addictions or restrictions due to mental health issues into the community. Certainly, that’s the aspect of Pathways I was most familiar with;Read More

Fast & Curious: Short Takes on Random Things

Fast & Curious: Short Takes on Random Things

November 25, 2022

Comfort and Joy I have to tie up two loose ends from my coverage of Tuesday morning’s council meeting. After listening to—and approving—Destination Cape Breton’s funding request (which I covered in detail because opaque organizations spending oodles of public money are catnip to me— or would be, if I wereRead...

Doing Unto Others

Doing Unto Others

December 15, 2021

A recent celebrant on CTV’s local Mass for Shut-ins began his homily with this line: If you go out into the garage and stay there all day, it doesn’t make you a car. Similarly if you go to church every Sunday, it doesn’t make you a Christian. That statement threwRead More

Other News

CBRM Council: Waterfront Development

CBRM Council: Waterfront Development

November 9, 2022 at 12:53 pm

I watched Westmount native Doug Doucet, founder of Bedford-based Doucet Developments—and a suite of related companies—present his plans for waterfront development to CBRM council last night. Much of the presentation (which also featured Chris Baldwin, his chief financial officer) focused on Doucet himself and his companies and why it’s aRead More

Centre 200, Sydney, Nova Scotia

CBRM Council: We’re Not Selling Centre 200

November 9, 2022 at 12:51 pm

Back in May of this year, District 8 Councilor James Edwards moved that council call for a staff Issue Paper on the pros and cons of selling Centre 200 and the Mayor and 10 councilors present that night (Councilors Paruch and O’Quinn were not there) approved it unanimously. Writing thisRead More

December 1984: Now We’re Arguing About the Canada Games

December 1984: Now We’re Arguing About the Canada Games

November 9, 2022 at 12:49 pm

Editor’s Note: This is Part IV of a series that will continue until I find some answers or give up, whichever comes first. You’ll find Part I here and Part II here and Part III here.   I spent my Sunday afternoon looking at microfilm at the CBU library. IRead More

"The Coming of the Loyalists," Henry Sandham (1842-1910), Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

That Time We Were All United Empire Loyalists

November 9, 2022 at 12:47 pm

As noted elsewhere, I spent far too many hours this weekend reading issues of the Cape Breton Post from December 1984, in which I found very little of relevance to my ongoing series on our failure, that year, to bury the power lines on Charlotte Street, but a great dealRead More

Black mustard seed. Photo by Sanjay Acharya, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=66997861

Winter Greens

November 9, 2022 at 12:45 pm

Editor’s Note: This column last appeared on 13 November 2019.   What to do this week The garden is just about done for the year, but already I want to keep the taste of something fresh in my kitchen. Fortunately this year it is not too late to bring someRead More

Fast & Curious: Short Takes on Random Things

Fast & Curious: Short Takes on Random Things

November 4, 2022 at 10:00 am

Premier Monkey’s Paw I was watching that Simpsons’ Halloween special where they spoof “The Monkey’s Paw” (a short story Wikipedia informs me was published in 1902 by the English author W.W. Jacobs) when I had a sudden revelation. It’s a “three wishes” story—the wishes being granted by the monkey’s pawRead More

The Project is Dead, But the Controversy Continues

The Project is Dead, But the Controversy Continues

November 2, 2022 at 12:21 pm

Editor’s Note: This is Part III of a series that will continue until I find some answers or give up, whichever comes first. You’ll find Part I here and Part II here.   I had a some assistance with my research this week and was able to plow through twoRead More

We’re Hosting…the World Women’s Curling Championship?

We’re Hosting…the World Women’s Curling Championship?

November 2, 2022 at 12:19 pm

Sydney, a “resilient and proud community with a history of hosting major curling events” will host the 2024 World Women’s Curling Championships (WWCC). I have bones to pick with that sentence (which opened a Curling Canada press release I received on Friday). First, Sydney hosted the 2019 Scotties Tournament ofRead More

Homage to a Peacemonger

Homage to a Peacemonger

November 2, 2022 at 12:17 pm

On September 24, the Canadian anti-war community suffered a grievous loss with the death, at the age of just 71, of Bill Blaikie, New Democrat MP for Winnipeg for nearly 30 years (1979-2008) and devout Christian believer in a peace on Earth secured not through the chimera of military ‘strength’Read More

Flooded farmland after Tropical Storm Lee, Campbell Hall, NY (Photo by Daniel Case [CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0, via Wikimedia Commons)

Bean There: Weathering Climate Change

November 2, 2022 at 12:11 pm

Editor’s Note: We’re reaching into Michelle’s Smith’s archives for posts as useful now as when they were first published and this week, we’re revisiting one of her lovely long-form essays, last published in November 2020.   The cat and I huddled under the blankets in the dark as the windRead More