Archive for: ‘December 2018’

Winnipeg parents moving towards safer Halloween traditions

24/12/2018 Posted by admin

WINNIPEG —; For many kids going trick-or-treating alone is a right of passage, but it can leave some parents nervous.

Now, many Winnipeg communities are looking to ease parent’s and children’s nerves and ensure everyone is safe on Halloween.

RELATED: Halloween safety tips for kids and drivers

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“When I was a kid trick-or-treating we would go off on our own and mom would stay at home,” said one resident. “It was safe. Nowadays, with crazies around, you never know.”

For the second year, a street in River Heights will shut down on Oct. 31 and have a Halloween block party.

“We close the street so the kids can feel free to just run around the whole evening,” said Stephanie Bolt. “There are more dangers, more cars on the street. I think we are more vigilant.”

It allows parents to watch over their kids while giving them the freedom to wander from house to house collecting candy.

RELATED: Halloween by the numbers: How much are you spending?

“You need to know what you’re getting in the candy,” said Justin Boonen. “Who your neighbours are. There is less of that as time goes on.”

Road blockades go up for the evening, the streets are closed to drivers but open to children and parents to trick-or-treat.

Other parents are opting to head to either Grant Park Mall, Kildonan Place or the Forks. All will be decorated in Halloween spirit and allow kids to trick-or-treat in an indoor and safe environment.

The idea of a “safe” Halloween isn’t entirely new and in one area of the city, was born from tragedy.

RELATED: 13 horror movies for Halloween that are actually scary

The Indian and Metis Friendship Centre has been opening its doors to trick-or-treaters since 2010.

It moved towards the tradition of indoor trick-or-treating after a triple shooting left two men dead just days before Halloween that year.

“We got together and just decided we have to have a safe haven for the kids,” said executive director Rick Lavallee. “There is a fairly high crime rate here and we just want our kids to be safe and we want our kids to enjoy Halloween.”

Each year since, more than 2,200 people have taken in the now annual tradition.

“In the past we’ve had lineups almost to Main St. which is a kilometre away,” said Lavallee.

This year the centre is doing things a little bit differently. Inside there will be a haunted house and the hall will be decorated and lit up. Trick-or-treating will be limited to children between the ages of 2-12.

RELATED: Coping with Halloween candy: a nutritionist’s advice

Prepackaged bags filled with candy will be handed out to children as they leave to help with the long lines the centre has experienced in the past.

With just a few days left before Halloween, the centre is still looking for donations: candy, chocolate, chips and even toothbrushes and floss. All can be dropped off at 45 Robinson Ave. over the weekend.

Republican Senator mocks opponents immigrant background and military service: ‘I had forgotten your parents came all the way from Thailand to serve George Washington’

24/12/2018 Posted by admin

Republican Senator Mark Kirk mocked his Democratic rival’s immigrant background and history of military service, saying he had forgotten the congresswoman’s “parents came all the way from Thailand to serve George Washington.”

The comment came on Thursday evening during the first televised debate between Kirk and US Rep. Tammy Duckworth, at the University of Illinois in Springfield.

The Illinois Senate contest is one of a handful of races that could determine which party controls the chamber next year.

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    Duckworth, an Iraq War veteran, was born in Bangkok and her mother is Thai.

    The congresswoman said her family has “served this nation in uniform going back to the Revolution.”

    Kirk responded: “I had forgotten your parents came all of the way from Thailand to serve George Washington.”

    The remark was greeted mostly by silence in the auditorium, and the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee immediately called the comment offensive and said Kirk should apologise.

    READ MORE: Donald Trump drops $10M into campaign fund as race for White House reaches final stretch

    Duckworth, the first Asian-American congresswoman from Illinois, later tweeted a photo of herself with her parents, including her father in uniform displaying his medals.

    Her tweet says: “My mom is an immigrant and my dad and his family have served this nation in uniform since the Revolution.”

    After the debate, Kirk spokesman Kevin Artl said the senator has called Duckworth “a war hero in his commercials and he commends her family’s service.”

    Kirk, a first-term senator from Highland Park, is seen as one of the Senate’s most vulnerable Republican incumbents, and Democrats consider Duckworth’s success on Election Day one of the keys to reclaiming a majority in the chamber.

    Duckworth has a comfortable lead in the most recent polls, but Kirk says the race is closer than people think.

Imperial Oil quarterly profit tops $1B for first time in over 2 years

24/12/2018 Posted by admin

Lower production due in part to unexpected repair work at Canada’s newest oilsands mine was offset by near-record high production at one of its oldest in the third quarter, Imperial Oil (TSX:IMO) reported Friday.

The Calgary-based company said its Kearl mine project averaged 159,000 barrels per day of bitumen in the three months ended Sept. 30, down 12 per cent from 181,000 bpd in the same period last year.

Watch below: When you think ‘big energy’ you probably think downtown Calgary, but Global’s Tomasia DaSilva takes a tour of Imperial Energy’s new campus in Quarry Park.

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    Two financial analysts said in notes to investors that Imperial detected cracks in a component of its ore crusher unit during planned maintenance and had to extend downtime to make repairs. Imperial spokeswoman Killeen Kelly said she could not confirm that, nor would she comment on what caused the unplanned maintenance.

    READ MORE: Imperial Oil says CEO switch not related to cost overruns at Kearl oilsands mine

    Kearl was built in two 110,000-bpd phases with the second phase starting production in mid-2015. The first phase, which began ramping up in 2013, was shut down for several weeks in late 2014 due to what Imperial said were mechanical issues that caused vibrations in its ore crusher unit. It’s unclear whether the latest issues were in the first or second phase of the project.

    Meanwhile, production at 38-year-old Syncrude Canada, in which Imperial holds a 25 per cent stake, delivered 85,000 bpd, up from 59,000 barrels in the year-earlier period, due to improved reliability.

    Imperial warned Friday that if low average prices for bitumen through the first nine months of 2016 persist until year-end, it could be forced to temporarily remove 2.6 billion barrels from proved reserves at Kearl under U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission rules. That’s more than half of the project’s total proved reserves of 4.6 billion barrels.

    READ MORE: Imperial Oil expects Alberta projects will get approval despite NDP climate plan

    It said it doesn’t expect a reserve writedown to affect operations or the outlook for future production volumes.

    A $716-million gain on the sale of its 497 service stations in the third quarter helped Imperial achieve a $1-billion quarterly profit for the first time since the second quarter of 2014, the company said. It sold the stations for a total of $2.8 billion to five fuel distributors.

    Net income more than doubled to $1.003 billion, or $1.18 per diluted share, for the third quarter — up from $479 million, or 56 cents per diluted share, in the same quarter last year.

    Revenue for the three months ended Sept. 30 was $7.44 billion, up from $7.16 billion in the third quarter of 2015.

    READ MORE: Imperial Oil posts $181M loss tied to Fort McMurray wildfires

Severely obese border collie begins weight loss journey, says Winnipeg dog rescue

24/12/2018 Posted by admin

WINNIPEG —; A 123 lbs. border collie named Bobby is starting a major weight loss journey, according to Manitoba Underdogs Rescue (MUS).

Bobby’s owner dropped him off last week at the rescue shelter, and the dog was immediately put on an emergency weight loss regiment.

“This is a bit of a tragic situation,” said Jessica Hansen with MUS.

“Bobby’s elderly owner suffered from dementia and unfortunately he didn’t receive the proper care as a result.”

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“He was loved with food instead of exercise and his health was ultimately put at risk. We’re happy that his family made the best decision possible and trusted us with his care,” she said.

Border collies are known for being energetic. Bobby, who is believed to be between six and seven-years-old, has an outgoing personality, but because he is so large he can’t act like a border collie.

“He can only do half block walks,” said Lindsay Gillanders with MUS.  “We switched him to low calorie dog food and he isn’t a huge fan of it right now.”

RELATED: Fat camps offer overweight dogs ‘doga’ to slim down

Although Bobby does not have any “visible health issues” right now, it still will be an expensive task for his weight loss, Hansen said. He’s more than double his recommended weight and will have to be in the care of the shelter for several months – requiring surgery to remove excess skin as well.

At 123 lbs., Bobby is more than twice his recommended weight of 60 lbs.

Manitoba Underdogs Rescue

He’s likely to be in the rescue organization’s care until he loses the required weight.

Manitoba Underdogs Rescue

Photos of Bobby and his journey will also be uploaded to Instagram using the hashtag #BobbyGotBack.

Manitoba Underdogs Rescue

If you’re interested in following Bobby’s weight loss journey, regular updates will be posted on the rescue’s Facebook page. Photos of Bobby and his journey will also be uploaded to Instagram using the hashtag #BobbyGotBack.

RELATED: Fitness tracking for your pooch? LED collar tracks calories, location, temperature

“With all of the negative stories that we come across, it’s nice to give our supporters the chance to follow a positive journey,” Hansen said. “Bobby will be extremely loved during his journey, and is already quickly becoming a favourite of ours. He’s just the sweetest boy!”

Manitoba Underdogs Rescue is asking the public for donations to help with Bobby’s weight loss. Donations are now being accepted on the Manitoba Underdogs website.

Hillary Clinton tells FBI to release all facts on emails

24/12/2018 Posted by admin

WASHINGTON – The FBI is investigating whether there is classified information in new emails uncovered during the sexting investigation of disgraced former congressman Anthony Weiner, the estranged husband of one of Hillary Clinton‘s closest aides.

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FBI Director James Comey told Congress in a letter that the emails prompted investigators to take another look at whether classified information had been mishandled, which had been the focus of its recently closed, criminal probe into Clinton’s use of a private email server. Comey couldn’t guarantee that the latest focus of the investigation would be finished before Election Day.

Clinton said Friday that “the American people deserve to get the full and complete facts immediately. She urged the FBI to “explain this issue in question, whatever it is, without any delay.”

“Let’s get it out,” she said.

READ MORE: FBI pressed to change classification of Hillary Clinton email by State department

WATCH: The FBI has uncovered new emails related to the investigation into how Hillary Clinton and her aides handled classified information. Jackson Proskow reports on the political fallout just 11 days before Americans head to the polls. 

Comey did not provide details about the emails, but a U.S. official told The Associated Press that the emails emerged through the FBI’s separate sexting probe of Weiner, who is separated from Clinton confidant Huma Abedin. She served as deputy chief of staff at the State Department and is still a key player in Clinton’s presidential campaign. The two separated earlier this year after Weiner was caught in 2011, 2013 and again in 2016 sending sexually explicit text messages and photographs of himself undressed to numerous women.

Federal authorities in New York and North Carolina are investigating online communications between Weiner and a 15-year-old girl. The U.S. official was familiar with the investigation but was not authorized to discuss the matter by name and spoke on condition of anonymity.

The disclosure came less than two weeks before the presidential election and thrust a political liability for Clinton back into the headlines that her campaign thought had been resolved and had begun to recede from the minds of voters. The FBI said in July its investigation of Hillary Clinton’s private email server was finished.

WATCH: Trump has ‘great respect’ for FBI’s decision to reopen investigation into Clinton’s email server

Comey stressed in his letter that the FBI could not yet assess “whether or not this material may be significant,” or how long it might take to run down the new investigative leads.

“In connection with an unrelated case, the FBI has learned of the existence of emails that appear to be pertinent to the investigation,” Comey wrote. “I agreed that the FBI should take appropriate investigative steps designed to allow investigators to review these emails to determine whether they contain classified information, as well as to assess their importance to our investigation.”

Clinton, in a brief statement to reporters Friday evening, noted: “The director himself has said he doesn’t know whether the emails referenced in his letter are significant or not. I’m confident whatever they are will not change the conclusion reached in July.”

READ MORE: Leaked emails show how Hillary Clinton’s campaign team dealt with email scandal

It was unclear what the emails contained, who sent them, or what connection they might have to the yearlong investigation the FBI closed in July without recommending criminal charges. The FBI probe focused on whether Clinton sent or received classified information using a server in the basement of her New York home, which was not authorized to handle such messages. Abedin was interviewed by the FBI as part of its investigation.

Comey said in July that his agents didn’t find evidence to support a criminal prosecution or direct evidence that Clinton’s private server was hacked.

Matthew Miller, a former chief spokesman for the Justice Department, was dismayed by the timing of Comey’s letter.

“Longstanding DOJ and FBI practice is you don’t say anything publicly close to an election that can possibly influence that election,” Miller said.

Comey, who has talked often about the FBI’s need to be accountable to the public, promised extraordinary transparency about the investigation and during intervening months has authorized the release of investigative files from the case, which are normally kept confidential.

WATCH: Trump says maybe government isn’t as rigged as he thought

That stance also left Comey, a career federal prosecutor who has served under both Republican and Democratic administrations, open to criticism from leaders in both parties that he was trying to influence the outcome of the presidential race.

Clinton campaign supporters were already suggesting the FBI director was putting a thumb on the scale. Had he waited until after Nov. 8 to announce the discovery of the new emails, however, Comey would surely have faced criticism for sitting on major news until after the new president had been selected.

State Department spokesman Mark Toner said the department learned about the FBI letter from news reports and did not get any notification from the FBI. Toner pledged the department would “co-operate to the full extent that we can.”

READ MORE: Donald Trump says political system not ‘as rigged as I thought’ after news of FBI probe

Speaking at a Clinton rally in Florida, President Barack Obama also steered clear of the issue. White House spokesman Eric Schultz declined comment beyond reiterating Obama’s continuing support for Clinton.

The ranking Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee, Sen. Dianne Feinstein, said Comey’s letter was particularly troubling because it left so many questions unanswered.

“Without knowing how many emails are involved, who wrote them, when they were written or their subject matter, it’s impossible to make any informed judgment on this development,” said Feinstein, D-Calif. “The FBI has a history of extreme caution near Election Day so as not to influence the results. Today’s break from that tradition is appalling.”

Republicans immediately pounced on the news, hoping to shake up a presidential race where most polls appear to show Republican nominee Donald Trump lagging well behind Clinton.

House Speaker Paul Ryan said Clinton has “nobody but herself to blame.”

WATCH: ‘Gotta read a little more’: Tim Kaine on FBI probe into new emails from Clinton

“She was entrusted with some of our nation’s most important secrets, and she betrayed that trust by carelessly mishandling highly classified information,” Ryan, R-Wis., said in a statement. “This decision, long overdue, is the result of her reckless use of a private email server, and her refusal to be forthcoming with federal investigators. I renew my call for the Director of National Intelligence to suspend all classified briefings for Secretary Clinton until this matter is fully resolved.”

Speaking to cheering supporters at a rally in New Hampshire, Trump used Comey’s new letter to attack Clinton.

“We must not let her take her criminal scheme into the Oval Office,” said Trump, who has pledged to “lock up” his political rival if elected. “Perhaps finally justice will be done.”

Prior to seeking public office as a Republican, Trump was a supporter of Clinton’s past campaigns for president and senator. Records show the New York billionaire also contributed at least $4,300 to former Rep. Weiner’s Democratic campaigns.