Archive for July 2019

Mary Lou Murphy dedicated her life to helping others.

“The passion for people is what Mary Lou had. Mary Lou wanted to love and help everyone,” Andrew Grimeau said of Murphy, who worked as a unit clerk at Fraser Health rehab centre near Abbotsford Regional Hospital.

Loved ones said Murphy’s fatal mistake was trusting Fraser Health to take care of one of their own.

“She put her whole life into her job for Fraser Health,” Grimeau said. “For what? [For] Fraser Health to fail her.”

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The 56-year-old went to Abbotsford Regional Hospital on Jan. 30 sweating profusely and in considerable pain.

After a five-hour wait she was given a shot of morphine and sent home.

“She had been treated in the community for muscular spasm with the appropriate medications,” Fraser Health Medicine Vice President Dr. Roy Morton said. “That was what the discharge diagnosis was from the emergency room.”

Grimeau says he visited her the next day at home and knew it was something much worse.

Murphy died sometime that night.

“All they’re doing in that hospital is diagnosing off of symptoms without research, without looking into what’s actually going on,” Grimeau said.

WATCH: Abbotsford family demands answers in death of three-year-old daughter

The family of Nimrat Gill has similar concerns.

The three-old died during a second trip to Abbotsford Regional Hospital after being told to treat a fever at home with Tylenol.

A doctor’s report shows the child might have died of cardiac arrest stemming from pneumonia and septic shock.

The two deaths occurred one week apart.

“What we’re hoping is that these were isolated incidents that happened to be closely linked in time only. And that’s why we do a review,” Morton said.

Grimeau is calling for an independent review, saying he doesn’t have faith in the health authority to properly diagnose itself.

“I don’t think Fraser Health should be investigating,” he said.

– With files from John Hua

The first thing we have to say is that it was pretty good reality TV.

A female cyclist, somewhere in England, is harassed by some obnoxious guys in a van.

She chases them down, finds the van parked a few blocks away …

… wrenches the side mirror off and makes her escape.

It’s exciting to watch, and morally satisfying in a jungle-justice kind of way. And, as the motorcycle rider who’s been filming the whole thing from his helmet cam says, they arguably had it coming. (Well, he was less even-handed.)

READ: Fake news: Not just for conservatives any more

You can see the video here; the version we’re linking to has over a million views.

As you might have guessed, there’s no basis to believe it happened as presented.

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    Ontario minister Brad Duguid apologizes for blurting out ‘fake news’ during press conference

  • Fake news: Not just for conservatives any more

  • Donald Trump brands mainstream media ‘enemy of the American people’

  • Fake news: The 2014 Parliament Hill attack went unreported

    British content provider Jungle Creations, where the video originally surfaced, later conceded they had no idea where it had come from and pulled it down. But by the time that happened, several mainstream British news outlets that apparently found it too good to check, had republished it. The Evening Standard ran an uncritical online story about the video, followed by a more carefully hedged version after doubts arose about its origins.

    (The Sun, to its credit, sent a reporter who talked to a construction worker who said he’d seen a man coaching both the cyclist and the men in the van.)

    READ: Expect more fake news from Russia, top NATO general says

    “The pressure for clicks has pushed many news organizations to take an increasingly lax attitude to checking whether a great story is made up,” the Guardian’s Jasper Jackson argues.

    (As dashboard cams and helmet cams become more common, confrontations between cyclists and drivers have become better-documented, if not more common. Thousands and thousands of the resulting videos have made their way to Youtube. So a video like this, like a lot of fake news, catches us with our guard a bit down, since there’s lots of similar real material out there. It doesn’t trigger our surprise instincts to any great extent.)

    This instance is fairly harmless, as these things go. However, it reminds us of this recent warning that making high-quality faked or staged video is going to become easier and easier and time goes on. Much of the fake news in circulation is of wretched quality and easy to spot if you’re even somewhat alert, and little of it involves any kind of video, but we shouldn’t count on that being true forever.

    READ: Ontario minister Brad Duguid apologizes to media over ‘fake news’ comment

    WATCH: President Donald Trump addressed the reports about his administration’s ties to Russia calling them “fake news” and defended former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn in a very combative news conference.

    In fake news news:

    The New York Times looks at a new calling-out-fake-news site, in this case run by the Russian foreign ministry. “It was hard for some critics to take the ministry’s fake news detector seriously,” the Times wrote, given that just this week Russia’s defence ministry announced a unit devoted to information warfare. The site “doesn’t seem to offer much in the way of debunking,” as Buzzfeed says, just screenshotting a story with a red FAKE stamp, with the cut-and-paste text “This article puts forward information that does not correspond to reality.”The Times also explains how fake news efforts linked to Russia may have helped defeat a referendum last year in the Netherlands on free trade with Ukraine, and examines East Stratcom, the EU’s attempt to keep up with a flood of fake news, a task it calls “overwhelming.” Staff members have had death threats, the Times reports, and one has been accused of espionage on Russian TV.The Eskilstuna Kuriren, a daily paper in Eskilstuna, Sweden, published a long investigative story last week by a reporter who took a job in a “troll factory” in which people armed with a script call journalists or other public figures and try to get them to say something unguarded or compromising. They are paid based on whether the conversations get social media traction. There’s an English-language summary here, and Chrome will offer a rough but serviceable translation of the original.Vitaly Churkin, Russia’s ambassador to the UN, died suddenly this week in New York. His cause of death is not clearly understood, and tests by city medical examiners may take weeks. (Churkin is the second Russian diplomat to die recently in New York in mysterious circumstances; Sergei Krivov was found in the Russian consulate with fatal head injuries on U.S. Election Day, Nov. 8.) Churkin’s death was immediately tweeted by a botnet apparently under Russian control, says the Digital Forensics Lab, an arm of the Atlantic Council. The bots “were all vocal supporters of U.S. President Donald Trump,” the Digital Forensics Lab explains in this Medium post. “They had avatar pictures of attractive women in revealing outfits.” Many used avatar images taken from real people’s accounts.The BBC looks at fake news in Germany, where it is causing alarm in the lead-up to elections there this fall. Reporter Amol Rajan floats a theory — established German media are responsible to a fault, but dull. “Germany’s conventional media market has created an opening for fake news, which of its very nature is salacious and exciting.”Buzzfeed’s Craig Silverman probes deeper into the murky relationship between marketing efforts for the “psychological horror thriller film” A Cure for Wellness, which opened last week, and fake news sites such as the Houston Leader. The controversy caught The Leader, a real weekly in Houston, in the blowback. Silverman also looks into who might be behind the five fake news sites that were part of the movie promotion. And as France heads toward first-round presidential elections in April, 17 French news organizations, drawn from a mix of old and new media, are collaborating to fact check online news.

Quebec film director Xavier Dolan has won the best director award at France’s equivalent of the Oscars.

Dolan took home the honours for “It’s Only the End of the World,” while the film was also successful in the best actor and film editing categories on Friday.

READ MORE: Xavier Dolan excited by Oscar attention, disappointed by film’s theatrical hopes

The film is about a dying writer who returns home to his estranged family.

 WATCH BELOW: Liem Vu interviews Canadian director Xavier Dolan about his latest movie “It’s Only the End of the World” and gets his thoughts on touring the festival circuit. 

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“I am very touched by your recognition tonight, among all this shining talent, which is so impressive,” he told the César ceremony.

“For nearly 10 years now, since the very beginning, the French have always made room for me.”

Gaspard Ulliel won the César for best actor.

READ MORE: Xavier Dolan returns to Montreal after big win in Cannes

Britain’s Ken Loach won the best foreign film award for “I, Daniel Blake” while Paul Verhoeven earned top honours in the best film category for “Elle.”

Isabelle Huppert won the best actress award for her performance in “Elle.”

WATCH BELOW: Xavier Dolan’s career

Xavier Dolan returns from Cannes


Xavier Dolan returns from Cannes


Canadian Xavier Dolan wins Grand Prix at the Cannes Film Festival


Xavier Dolan back in Montreal


Xavier Dolan talks ‘Titanic’

WASHINGTON — In President Donald Trump‘s estimation, the U.S. border isn’t merely porous, it’s “wide open.” Darkness and danger are everywhere, even Sweden. American infrastructure isn’t just in need of improvement but it’s in “total disrepair and decay.” The health law is not only flawed, but it’s an “absolute and total catastrophe.”

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His apocalyptic view of everything he intends to fix leaves no nuance, but that’s where reality often resides. For example, Trump himself actually likes parts of former President Barack Obama’s health overhaul, such as the extended coverage for older children. And the U.S. remains an economic powerhouse able to transport goods in a stressed system of roads, bridges and ports that are not in total decay.

READ MORE: CPAC attendees tricked into waving Russian flags in support of Donald Trump

But the president is one to overreach for superlatives, whether describing the state of things as he found them or what he plans to do about them — or claims to have done already.

Some statements from the past week:

WATCH: Trump tells CPAC crowd that those harmed by Obamacare repeal ‘aren’t you’

TRUMP: “Obamacare covers very few people.”

THE FACTS: That’s only true if you consider more than 20 million people to be “very few.” That’s how many are covered by the two major components of the law: expanded Medicaid and subsidized private health insurance.

The Medicaid expansion, adopted by 31 states and the District of Columbia, covers about 11 million low-income people, according to the Congressional Budget Office. The other, more visible, component is The federal website and state-run online insurance markets have signed up 12.2 million people for this year, according to an Associated Press count this month, based on federal and state reports.

Altogether, since Obama’s law passed in 2010, the number of uninsured people has dropped by about 20 million and the uninsured rate has declined below 9 percent, a historic low.


WATCH: Trump says he ‘took a lot of heat on Sweden’

TRUMP, repeating a week-old assertion that Sweden is an example of violence and extremism due to immigration: “Take a look at what happened in Sweden. I love Sweden, great country, great people, I love Sweden. But they understand. The people over there understand I’m right.”

THE FACTS: Trump was ridiculed in Sweden after he warned at a rally in Florida that terrorism was growing in Europe and something terrible had happened in Sweden the previous night. But there had been no extraordinary trouble that night in Sweden, a country welcoming to immigrants.

Two days later, though, a riot broke out after police arrested a drug crime suspect. Cars were set on fire and shops looted, but no one was injured. Attacks in the country related to extremism remain rare. The biggest surprise for many Swedes was that a police officer found it necessary to fire his gun.


READ MORE: Trump to award Mexico border wall contracts within 2 months 

TRUMP: The U.S. is providing security to other nations “while leaving our own border wide open. Anybody can come in. But don’t worry, we’re getting a wall. … We’re getting bad people out of this country.”

THE FACTS: His wide-open border claim is bogus. The number of arrests of illegal border crossers — the best measure of how many people are trying to cross illegally — remains at a 40-year low. The U.S. government under Presidents George W. Bush and Obama roughly doubled the ranks of the Border Patrol in the past decade or so.

In addition, the number of people expelled from the country since Trump took office Jan. 20 has not been disclosed. No available data support his claim, made Thursday, that immigrants in the country illegally are being expelled at a rate “nobody has ever seen before.” Deportations were brisk when Obama was president.

Altogether in January, 16,643 people were deported, a drop from December (20,395) but a number that is similar to monthly deportations in early 2015 and 2016.

This month, Homeland Security officials have said 680 people were arrested in a weeklong effort to find and arrest criminal immigrants living in the United States illegally. Three-quarters of those people had been convicted of crimes, Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly said. The remaining 25 percent were not.

The government has not provided information about who was arrested in that roundup, so it’s impossible to determine how many gang members or drug lords were in that group. It is also unclear how many of those “bad people” have actually been deported.

That roundup was largely planned before Trump took office and was alternately described by the Trump administration as a routine enforcement effort and a signal of his pledge to take a harder line on illegal immigration. During the Obama administration, similar operations were carried out that yielded thousands of arrests.


READ MORE :Several arrested as Standing Rock activists defy deadlines for Dakota Access pipeline protest

TRUMP: “We have authorized the construction, one day, of the Keystone and Dakota Access pipelines. And issued a new rule — this took place while I was getting ready to sign. I said who makes the pipes for the pipeline? Well, sir, it comes from all over the world, isn’t that wonderful? I said nope, comes from the United States, or we’re not building it. American steel. If they want a pipeline in the United States, they’re going to use pipe that’s made in the United States.”

THE FACTS: It’s not that straightforward. Trump’s executive order leaves lots of wiggle room on how much U.S. steel is actually used. The order states new, expanded or repaired pipelines in the U.S. must use U.S. steel “to the maximum extent possible” and allowed by law. That’s not an all-USA mandate.

What’s judged possible in the Keystone XL project remains to be seen. Pipes are already purchased. Contrary to his statement, Trump has not approved the project. Rather, he revived it by asking TransCanada to resubmit its application.

TransCanada did so in late January while saying it needs time to review how any buy-American plan would affect the company. It has said the majority of steel would be from North America, but that includes Canada and Mexico.

Trump’s Jan. 24 order on U.S. steel has little effect on the Dakota Access project because it is nearly complete.


READ MORE: Trump expansion of deportation guidelines could affect millions of people

TRUMP on arrests of people in the country illegally: “It’s a military operation because what has been allowed to come into our country, when you see gang violence that you’ve read about like never before and all of the things, much of that is people who are here illegally. And they’re rough and they’re tough, but they’re not tough like our people. So we’re getting them out.”

THE FACTS: He was wrong in calling immigration enforcement a military operation.

Immigration and Customs Enforcement, responsible for finding and deporting immigrants in the country illegally, is a civilian law enforcement agency. Military personnel were not responsible for recent raids that resulted in the arrests of 680 people. Planning for that roundup had been underway during the previous and was in step with large, periodic raids when Obama was president.

Kelly contradicted Trump on the nature of plans to step up border enforcement: “There will be no use of military forces in immigration,” Kelly said. “There will be no — repeat, no — mass deportations.”


READ MORE: Trump praises Lockheed Martin for slashing $600M from troubled F-35 jet costs

TRUMP again claimed credit for a $700 million savings in the military’s contract with Lockheed for the F-35 fighter jet. Speaking to the defense contractor’s CEO Marillyn Hewson, he said: “Over $700 million. Do you think Hillary would have cost you $700 million? I assume you wanted her to win” — referring to Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton.

THE FACTS: Cost savings for the F-35 began before Trump’s inauguration and predate his complaints about the price tag.

The head of the Air Force program announced significant price reductions Dec. 19 — after Trump had tweeted about the cost but weeks before Trump met about the issue on Jan. 13 with Hewson.

“There is absolutely no evidence whatsoever of additional F-35 cost savings as a result of President Trump’s intervention,” said Richard Aboulafia, an analyst with the aerospace consulting firm Teal Group. He said Trump appears to be taking credit for prior-year budget decisions and for work already done by managers at the Pentagon who took action before the presidential election to reduce costs.


Associated Press writers Alicia A. Caldwell, Matthew Daly and Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar contributed to this report.

Chef Jeff Koop of Mamie Taylor’s make jambalaya for Mardi Gras.


½ cup White onion, medium dice
½ cup Green pepper, medium dice
½ cup Celery, medium dice
½ cup Red pepper, medium dice
6-8 Shrimp peeled, cleaned and halved
1 small Chicken breast (raw, cut into 1” pieces)
1 cup Andouille Sausage cut in 1” pieces
2 Tbsp Vegetable oil
2 cups Shrimp stock
1 cup diced canned tomatoes
1 cup Uncooked white, long grain rice
6-8 Clams or mussels, cleaned and in the shell
2 Tbsp Jambalaya Spice*
Salt & Pepper to taste

1 cup sour cream (garnish)
grated lime zest (garnish)

*Jambalaya Spice
2 tsp Smoked paprika
1 tsp Regular paprika
1 tsp Garlic powder
1 tsp Onion powder

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1 tsp Cayenne pepper
1 tsp Dried thyme
1 tsp Mustard powder


Preheat oven to 325F

Heat up 10” cast iron or ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. Add cooking oil. Add chicken and a pinch of salt. Brown on one side for 30 seconds. Turn chicken and add shrimp and sausage to the pan. Cook for 30 seconds, stirring.

Add onion, peppers and celery and Jambalaya spice to skillet. Sauté for 30 seconds.

Add shrimp stock, tomatoes and rice. Stir gently and bring to a simmer.

Remove skillet from heat and place shellfish gently on top in one even layer.

Cover with a lid or aluminum foil and place in the oven.

Bake for 40 minutes until liquid is absorbed, shellfish have opened and rice is cooked through.

Serve into a bowl and top with a dollop of sour cream finely-grated lime zest.

Serves 4