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          Tuesday, December 10, 2019


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Canada is a country in the northern part of North America. Its ten provinces and three territories extend from the Atlantic to the Pacific and northward into the Arctic Ocean, covering 9.98 million square kilometres (3.85 million square miles), making it the world's second-largest country by total area. Its southern border with the United States, stretching some 8,891 kilometres (5,525 mi), is the world's longest bi-national land border. Canada's capital is Ottawa, and its three largest metropolitan areas are Toronto, Montreal, and Vancouver.

Canada is a parliamentary democracy and a constitutional monarchy in the Westminster tradition, with a monarch and a prime minister who serves as the chair of the Cabinet and head of government. The country is a realm within the Commonwealth of Nations, a member of the Francophonie and officially bilingual at the federal level. It ranks among the highest in international measurements of government transparency, civil liberties, quality of life, economic freedom, and education. It is one of the world's most ethnically diverse and multicultural nations, the product of large-scale immigration from many other countries. Canada's long and complex relationship with the United States has had a significant impact on its economy and culture.
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John Edward Brownlee was Premier of Alberta, Canada, from 1925 to 1934 as leader of the United Farmers of Alberta (UFA) caucus in the Legislative Assembly of Alberta. After a number of early successes, his popularity and his government's suffered from the hardships of the Great Depression. In 1934, he was embroiled in a sex scandal when a family friend sued him for seduction. Though Brownlee denied the events she alleged, when the jury found in her favour he announced his resignation as premier. Read more...

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Detail from portrait of Rosalie Cadron-Jetté circa 1860
Detail from a portrait of Mother Marie of the Nativity c. 1860

Marie-Rosalie Cadron Jetté, S.M. (née Cadron, January 27, 1794 – April 5, 1864), also known as Marie of the Nativity, was a Canadian widow and midwife who undertook the charitable care of unwed and struggling mothers between 1840 and 1864. Out of this work, she became the foundress of the Congregation of the Sisters of Misericorde. The cause for her canonization is now being studied in the Vatican. Pope Francis declared her "Venerable" in 2013. Read more...

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Children watch the Canada Day parade in Montreal, 2004

Canada Day (French: Fête du Canada) is the national day of Canada. A federal statutory holiday, it celebrates the anniversary of July 1, 1867, the effective date of the Constitution Act, 1867 (then called the British North America Act, 1867), which united the three separate colonies of the Province of Canada, Nova Scotia, and New Brunswick into a single Dominion within the British Empire called Canada. Originally called Dominion Day (French: Le Jour de la Confédération), the holiday was renamed in 1982, the year the Canada Act was passed. Canada Day celebrations take place throughout the country, as well as in various locations around the world, attended by Canadians living abroad. Read more...

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Education in Canada is for the most part provided publicly, funded and overseen by federal, provincial, and local governments. Education is within provincial jurisdiction and the curriculum is overseen by the province. Education in Canada is generally divided into primary education, followed by secondary education and post-secondary. Within the provinces under the ministry of education, there are district school boards administering the educational programs. Read more...

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Current events

December 2, 2019 –
A man shoots himself on the steps of the Alberta Legislature Building in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, causing an early adjournment of the day's question period. The individual is pronounced dead at the scene. (Global)
October 21, 2019 – 2019 Canadian federal election
Voters in Canada go to the polls to elect members of the 43rd Canadian Parliament. Polls show Justin Trudeau's Liberals and Andrew Scheer's Conservatives deadlocked with equal numbers of support after a divisive campaign. (CBC News) (CTV News) (HuffPost)
September 30, 2019 –
A near-record snowstorm drops large amounts of snow in some parts of Alberta, from September 27-30. 95 cm fell in Waterton, 50-60 cm fell in Lethbridge, and over 27-32 cm fell in Calgary. Impacts were relatively mild, with power outages, and businesses closing. (The Globe and Mail)
September 27, 2019 – September 2019 climate strikes, Individual and political action on climate change
An estimated two million people across the world participate in strikes to encourage action on climate change, with a total of 6 million during the week, including up to 500,000 protesters in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. (The Guardian) (CBC)
September 19, 2019 – Havana syndrome
A study ordered by the Canadian government finds that exposure to anti-mosquito fumigation, which contains cholinesterase-inhibiting neurotoxins, coincides with brain damage causing the same symptoms as those associated with the syndrome. (Reuters)

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Northwest Crown Fire Experiment, Canada
Credit: (Photograph used by permission of the USDA Forest Service.)

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180-degree panorama of Toronto, Canada, as seen from the CN Tower, altitude 447 m (1,465 ft). Circa 2000.
Panoramic view of Toronto
Credit: Sunshine87 (Johannes Akkach)

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