‘Car choir’ puts an inventive spin on live concerts during pandemic

U of A choral director conducts live performances in a parking lot, with singers performing from the safety of their cars

In a year when in-person concerts have been next to impossible, U of A choral director Tim Shantz has found a way for the university’s Madrigal Singers to perform live before an audience. And it doesn’t involve Zoom. Gathered in a parking lot, the members of his choir sing into microphones from their cars – all safely contained in…

Alberta’s rising crime rate begs more policing, not less

'Defund the police’ movement does nothing to address the root causes of criminality

Alberta’s rising crime rate begs more policing, not lessThe year is not yet over, and Calgary has already recorded more than 26 homicides, after 20 in 2019. Edmonton has witnessed a 90 per cent spike in assaults with weapons or causing bodily harm. Unbelievably, rather than tackling this escalating violence head-on, officials have joined a utopian crusade against police. Edmonton Mayor Don Iveson…

Alberta municipal gov’t labour costs out of touch with reality

Alberta municipal gov’t labour costs out of touch with realityStruggling families and businesses can’t afford to pay big property tax bills to fund bloated municipal governments. Alberta municipalities need to reduce that burden by addressing the cost elephant in the room: labour. For many Albertans working outside of government, the last five years have been nothing short of a nightmare full of job losses,…

The sky’s the limit for helium industry

The sky’s the limit for helium industryNecessity was the mother of invention for Marlon McDougall. After 35 years in the oil and gas industry, McDougall was frustrated with the pressures of regulations, environmentalism, pipeline restrictions and the need for expensive technologies as more easily accessible reserves were depleted. Then, in 2019, he was approached to work with what’s been called “the…

Dissecting Canada’s NHL underachievers

We could see as many as five Canadians teams in the playoffs – but more likely we’ll see two or three at this pace

Dissecting Canada’s NHL underachieversFor fans of Canada’s seven embattled National Hockey League teams, the man from Zamboni is a suitable talisman of their frustration. As most everyone now knows, a 42-year-old Zamboni driver – a kidney-transplant Zamboni driver – stepped in for the Carolina Hurricanes on Saturday night in Toronto to defeat the listless Leafs 6-3. When both…

Vancouver’s absurd housing market shuts out millennials

Is the affordability crisis – and the lack of government intervention – a metaphor for something much worse?

Vancouver’s absurd housing market shuts out millennialsI want to describe Vancouver’s awful housing market as a metaphor for something else. I’ll reveal the ‘something else’ later in the column. For now, let’s just stick with Vancouver, the city I grew up in. When I was a little boy, our Dunbar neighbourhood had a broad cross-section of residents. Our family’s cleaning lady…

CNRL budget up by $250M with curtailment ease

Budget increase adds 60 drilling locations across Alberta and three more working drilling rigs, creating about 1,000 full-time jobs

CNRL budget up by $250M with curtailment easeCalgary-based energy giant Canadian Natural Resources Limited is increasing its capital expenditure to $4.05 billion in 2020, the company announced on Wednesday. With the Alberta government's recent announcement of the elimination of curtailment for some conventional drilling in Alberta, and its previously announced reduction in income tax rates, CNRL increased its 2020 capital budget by…

Average weekly earnings edge up 3.4% in Alberta

Stats Can saw large employment growth in the health care, social assistance sector, and increased earnings in the transportation and warehousing sectors

Average weekly earnings edge up 3.4% in AlbertaAverage weekly earnings of non-farm payroll employees in Alberta in September rose by 3.4 per cent from a year ago, according to Statistics Canada. They remain the highest among all Canadian provinces at $1,177.54. The federal agency reported Thursday that the hike is “partially due to a low point observed in September 2018.” “Large employment…

Small business confidence in Alberta declines in November

Business confidence is the second lowest in the country and well behind the national average of 56.1 per cent

Small business confidence in Alberta declines in NovemberAlberta’s entrepreneurs have the fall blues. The monthly Business Barometer by the Canadian Federation of Independent Business showed small business confidence tumbled in November. The index fell 8.9 points from the previous month to 44.7. It's the second lowest in the country and well behind the national average of 56.1 per cent. The CFIB says an…
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