Interesting Tidbits

Canada’s Auditor General will be receiving an honourary doctorate from the University of Waterloo on Saturday, October 22. Sheila Fraser is being awarded a Doctor of Laws (LLD) for being “the first woman to hold this highly visible federal office” and for “provid(ing) leadership in enhancing effectiveness in public auditing.” Also: “Before her appointment as Auditor General, she had a distinguished professional career as an Ernst & Young partner in Quebec, followed by a senior leadership role in the federal public sector.”

Proof that Negativity Sells Papers

Yes, there is media bias in the news. But it isn’t liberal, and it isn’t conservative. It just wants to scare you so that you’ll pay attention. Consider this article from Crawl Across the Ocean:

> Statscan put out an update on our national balance sheet today:

“The stronger performance of the economy in the second quarter was reflected in the acceleration in the growth of national wealth (+1.5%).”

“Government debt-to-GDP at 20-year low…”

“Corporate debt-to-equity edges down…”

“Canadians’ net indebtedness to non-residents (the amounts owing to non-residents less the assets held by Canadians abroad) fell in the second quarter”

“household net worth continued to advance (+1.8%) at a stronger pace than in the previous quarter…”

“Supported by sustained low interest rates, the growth in total household debt continued to outpace that of personal disposable income. This resulted in a debt-to-income ratio of 107.8% in the second quarter, up from 107.1% in the first quarter. Canadian households carry about $1.08 in debt for every dollar of their disposable income.”

All good news (and it seems that Canadians are better off now than they were twelve years ago when the Liberals took power). However, how does the Globe and Mail headline its article?

Household Debt Mushrooms

Declan gives the article the scorn it deserves.


My mother will be reading from her latest young adult fantasy novel, The Bone Flute at Word on the Street - Kitchener. Her reading is set for 12:30 p.m., and I hope there’s a good crowd. Unfortunately, I won’t be there, as I’ll be in Word on the Street - Toronto helping to man The New Quarterly’s booth and shamelessly promoting this feisty Canadian literary magazine. If you’re in the area, feel free to come by and say ‘hi!’

I’ll also be up at the Waterloo Public Library this Saturday, attending Susan Fish’s book launch of Seeker of Stars, a story of the journey of the magi as they followed the Star of Bethlehem to Christ’s birthplace. I’m quite pleased at the work I’ve done for Susan’s website, and I expect it will be a good time at the launch.

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