Trying to bring order to the chaos.
It's been three days since an earthquake devastated Haiti's capital.
Aid organizations from around the world are making their way to the
impoverished nation -- and the challenge they face is daunting.
Estimates say at least seventy-five per cent of Port-au-Prince's
buildings are destroyed, and the city's infrastructure is severely
damaged. There are desperate shortages of food, water, and medical
supplies. The Red Cross estimates that three million people are in
urgent need of humanitarian assistance.
Simon Schorno is a spokesperson for the International Committee of the
Red Cross. He is in Port-au-Prince, which is where we reached him
The Red Cross has set up a special website dedicated to helping people
who have lost contact with a loved one because of the earthquake. To
register on the site, go to www.icrc.org/familylinks -- all one word.
Another aid agency playing a part in the relief effort is CARE
International. Rick Perera is a member of CARE's emergency relief team.
He arrived in Haiti this morning. We reached him earlier today at the
CARE Headquarters in Petionville, a suburb of Port-au-Prince.
International's emergency relief team. We reached him earlier today in Petionville, a suburb of Port-au-Prince.
All of the aid arriving in the country comes with a logistical
challenge: how best to distribute that aid to those who need it most? In
a country where corruption was rampant, some worry that the aid that
does arrive could be misdirected, lost, or even stolen.
Dante Caputo is the former head of the United Nations Mission in
Haiti, and is now a special advisor to the Secretary-General of the
Organization of American States. He has proposed the creation of an aid
follow-up and accountability commission to try to combat the problem. We
reached him at his office in Washington, D.C.
|SUR LE TOIT DES VOISINS/GADJI-GADJO|
|MELANIE BERGERON|| - ||COMPOSER|
|GADJI-GADJO || - ||FOLK ENSEMBLE|
|GADJI-GADJO || - ||INSTRUMENTAL ENSEMBLE|
|GADJI-GADJO || - ||PRODUCER|
|ROBERT LANGLOIS|| - ||PRODUCER|
These days, thanks to online social networking sites, there's no
shortage of ways to reconnect with long-lost friends. With a click of
your mouse you can be happily chatting away like it was yesterday, and
there's no tomorrow.
Of course, reconnections of this sort require a willingness and
ability, on the part of all parties involved, to link through one of the
various networking sites like Facebook or Twitter or MySpace.
It's not so easy if you're a contented Luddite. Even more difficult if
your friends are too. Not easy, but not impossible either -- as
Talkback's just proven.
We received this email from Mark Schrager in Onion Creek, Washington.
"Greetings ladies, (no offense taken, Mr. Schrager...)
"Here's a good story. I live on a remote mountain homestead in
northeastern Washington state. I'm one of those back-to-the-land
holdouts from the 'Sixties -- something which, I guess, is coming back
into vogue with the "green revolution."
"Anyway, the other night you read my Talkback email suggesting a boa
constrictor as a possible solution for the woman with vulture problems.
As a result, I have reconnected with an old (and very dear) friend who I
lost touch with over twenty-five years ago! This friend and I lived in
tipis (teepees) together in the Colorado Rockies during the early
'Seventies. We were what you'd call "dyed-in-the-wool" hippies trying to
live our politics.
"Now, when I got my first computer (only a year ago) I attempted to
Google him but, with a name like Glen Riley and not even a state, much
less a town, you can imagine how successful THAT was. Besides, I wasn't
at all sure that he would have any online presence.
"So imagine my surprise to get an email from him. Turns out I was
right. He lives on a five-square-mile, off-the-grid island in the San
Juans. And like me, he gets most of his news from the CBC (there are
lots of us down here). He heard my name and Onion Creek and was able to
track me down via the amazing Internet..
"So I just wanted to thank you for the role you unwittingly played and to say hurray for old-fashioned broadcast radio."
Thanks, Mark for your email. Remember, you've always got an old friend
in Talkback, so give us a call at 1-866-481-5718. Or email us at
New Brunswick's ombudsman, Bernard Richard, sums it up like this:
"Someone should have clued in that this girl required much more
The problem is, no one ever did clue in.
Mr. Richard is talking about Ashley Smith, the Moncton teenager who
died in a federal prison just over two years ago. On Tuesday, As It
Happens spoke with her mother Coralee Smith about the family's decision
to boycott an upcoming coroner's inquest into her death. Here is part of
that interview, for the record.
The coroner's inquest into Ashley Smith's death will look at what
happened in October 2007, when she died at the Grand Valley Institution
in Kitchener, Ontario. But her parents say, that's not enough. They want
the investigation to be broadened, to include all of Ashley's seventeen
transfers, among nine different institutions, across five provinces --
all in the span of just eleven-and-a-half months.
As Canada's Minister for Public Safey, Peter Van Loan oversees all
nine of those institutions. We reached the minister in Ottawa.
|FIGHT CLUB, SOUNDTRACK|
|RESTLESS, 01877 73715|
|DUST BROTHERS|| - ||COMPOSER|
|DUST BROTHERS|| - ||PRODUCER|
| DUST BROTHERS|| - ||PERFORMER|
L JONES REACTION
Earl Jones described himself as someone who liked to help people. And by "help," apparently, he meant "rob."
Today, the financial planner pleaded guilty to several accounts of
fraud and theft. He had been charged with stealing million of dollars
from his clients, under the pretense of offering them sound financial
Dr. Dave Hayden is one of the clients Mr. Jones' "helped" -- helped
make poorer, that is. We reached Dr. Hayden at his home in Halifax.
|HOLY FUCK: LP|
|YOUNG TURKS, YTCD 006|
|HOLY FUCK|| - ||COMPOSER|
|HOLY FUCK|| - ||ENS INSTR|
Dateline: Bolzano, Italy.
Diego Maradona is perhaps the best soccer player the world has ever
seen. The Argentine footballer was the star of Napoli's soccer team for
six years, and, during that time, he also led his national team to
victory at the World Cup in 1986. It was in that World Cup that
Argentina beat England two to one, and Maradona scored both goals --
even if the second goal was directed by his hand. Maradona, of course,
denied that he'd used his hand, which led critics to suggest, then, that
it was the hand of God who directed the ball into the net -- and it has
gone on to become the most famous goal in all of soccer.
But while Maradona may have had access to God's arm for his personal
use, he evidently didn't have access to the Lord's wallet: while he was
playing in Napoli, he racked up a thirty-seven-million-Euro income tax
bill, which is still outstanding.
Normally, if one owes a federal government the equivalent of fifty
million dollars, one would probably end up in jail for avoiding it. But
Italy's statute of limitations means that Maradona can no longer be
arrested if he shows up there.
But if Maradona does appear in Italy, authorities can strip him of
whatever assets he has on his person to go toward the debt. And last
year, Maradona -- who is known these days as much for his girth as for
his gifted ball skills -- went to Italy to go to a weight-loss clinic.
And authorities duly descended on him, and seized the only thing on his
person really worth anything: a single diamond earring.
That earring was sold yesterday, at a government auction. For
twenty-five thousand -- five times its asking price. Which goes to show:
if you can't pay your taxes, at least give the government an earful. It
may just cut them down to tithe.
Johnny Paycheck, with "Take This Job and Shove It" -- a song many of
us have wanted to sing to our bosses at one time or another. Preferably
while pouring our double-double out on the boss's Blackberry, and
possibly sticking out our tongues.
Most of us are able to keep such thoughts sealed behind strained
smiles and flurries of blinking. But new research out of the U.K.
suggests that, perhaps, we should tell our bosses exactly what we think
of them. And that the results could be beneficial to our health.
Emma Donaldson-Feilder is the lead researcher on the study. We reached
her at the British Psychological Society's Occupational Psychology
Conference in Brighton, England.
|RELAPSE, RELCD 6694|
|SOUL REBELLION ORCHESTRA|| - ||COMPOSER|
|SOUL REBELLION ORCHESTRA|| - ||BAND|
Orange is out.
Five years ago, the Ukrainian capital of Kiev was swathed in orange --
the colour adopted by the movement that overturned a rigged
presidential election. It brought the movement's heroes -- President
Victor Yushchenko and Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko -- to power.
Now, as Ukrainians head to the polls this weekend to elect a president
again, the colour is nowhere to be seen -- even though the political
players are the same. No one, it seems, wants to be associated with the
2004 revolution these days.
To explain more, we reached Olexiy Haran at the University of Kiev.
|AUDIOGRAM, ADCD 10165|
|YVES DESROSIERS|| - ||COMPOSER|
| LHASA|| - ||COMPOSER|
| DIDIER DUMOUTIER|| - ||LYRICIST|
|LHASA|| - ||VOCALS|
| FRANCOIS LALONDE|| - ||PRODUCER|
| JEAN MASSICOTTE|| - ||PRODUCER|
SC: HAITI: EYEWITNESS E-MAILS NF/LS
Haiti's earthquake has meant an almost-complete breakdown in
communications. Phones ring and there's no answer. Computers go dark.
the frustration and anxiety is felt as much by people in aid
organizations, worried about their fellow workers in Haiti, as it is by
individuals praying to hear word from their friends and families.
Over the past two days, CARE Canada has received two e-mails from CARE
workers in Port-Au-Prince. The organization has shared them with our
The first came two days ago from Sophie Perez, Country Director for Care Haiti. She wrote:
"It was terrifying. We were at the office when the quake happened, and
the whole office was shaking. People were screaming, crying, running.
Everything was moving. I saw a building of nine floors completely
collapse right in front of me. A bank collapsed. Even if a building
isn't totally destroyed, you can't access the area because of the
"Our staff who were with me in the office are safe, but most of their
houses have collapsed. I've heard aid workers from other agencies are
still missing. Everyone is trying to find their families. It seems the
whole city was affected -- to the north, south, everywhere. It was
difficult to get through the streets. Many areas you can't reach by car.
You can only get through by foot, because there is so much debris.
"We're particularly worried about the children, because so many
schools seem to have collapsed. In Haiti, children go to school in the
afternoon. Children were still in school when the earthquake hit, so
there are many children trapped. It's horrifying. The slums on the hills
have also completely collapsed. We've heard of landslides, with entire
communities being wiped out.
"I've been here for many years, and I've experienced a few small
earthquakes. But I've never been through anything this strong. My house
is okay, but I spent the night outside by the gate with my children.
There were eight aftershocks during the night, and we woke up every
time. My children are terrified. Everyone is terrified."
And this e-mail came from Hauke Hoops, Regional Emergency Coordinator
for CARE in Port-au-Prince. It was sent today at 9 a.m. local time.
"This is one of the biggest disasters I've ever seen, and it is a huge
logistical challenge. Everything has to come in by plane or boat, but
the port is destroyed. The airport is overstretched, overcrowded with
"Security is a huge concern. The jail collapsed, and there are five
thousand inmates on the loose. This has caused a lot of fear ? There are
rising tensions; people have been without food for two days now, and
they are starting to get desperate. In this situation, people will do
anything to get food and water for their families.
"We have a hundred-and-thirty-three staff working in Haiti, but our
staff in Port-au-Prince lost everything -- their houses, their families,
everything. Staff are totally traumatized. We've seen this before,
where staff have lost family members; they are trying to control their
own emotions, take care of their families, and at the same time respond
to a massive disaster. You can imagine how difficult this is: there is
so much work to do and everyone needs help. It's a nightmare."
Both those e-mails came from CARE workers in Haiti. They were shared with us by CARE Canada.
|BELA FLECK: THE BLUEGRASS SESSIONS|
|WARNER BROS, CDW 47332|
|BELA FLECK|| - ||COMPOSER|
|BELA FLECK|| - ||BANJO|
Sergeant Mark Gallagher was on a different kind of mission to Haiti.
He was one of a group of RCMP officers on assignment with the United
Nations in Port-au-Prince. His body was discovered yesterday in the
rubble of his residence.
Corporal Robin Churchill was a long-time colleague and friend. We reached him in Halifax.
|BLACK BOX, BBM 1097|
|MARC MELLITS|| - ||COMPOSER|
|DUKE QUARTET|| - ||STRING QUARTET|
| JOHN METCALFE|| - ||VIOLA|
| LOUISA FULLER|| - ||VIOLIN|
| RICK KOSTER|| - ||VIOLIN|
| SOPHIE HARRIS|| - ||CELLO|
| HARVEY BROUGH|| - ||PRODUCER|
| DUKE QUARTET|| - ||PRODUCER|
DA:: MONTENEGRO HIPPO
One of the most prominent residents of Plavnica, Montenegro is at large. Extremely large.
Montenegro is one of several countries in southeastern Europe
currently experiencing flooding. Dozens of homes there have been
evacuated. And while that's a problem for most of those who've been
forced to leave their living quarters, one immigrant to the country is
finally in her element. While Montenegrins are cooped up by the heavy
rains, Nikica is lumbering free.
Nikica is an eleven-year-old hippopotamus. When flooding hit the zoo,
she was able to swim right out of her cage. And for the past few days,
she's been wandering around Plavnica at will -- followed, at a distance,
by two security guys from the zoo. And Plavnicans have welcomed her --
or, at least, felt sufficiently nervous about her to placate her with
stale bread and hay.
According to the zoo's owner, Dragan Pejovic, the townsfolk have
nothing to worry about. "Nikica does not represent a threat to anyone,"
he said, "unless someone attacks and kicks her." But that is not
entirely true. The evacuation of Nikica's cage is one thing -- but when
Nikica herself evacuates, it can be dangerous.
The thing about hippos is that they're not neat when it comes to
excretion. They like to mark as much territory in one go as possible. So
when they rid themselves of waste, they spin their tails around, which
has the efficient effect of distributing whatever's coming out of them
in all directions. There's an expression about fans that I think would
be appropriate, but I can't remember it.
Regardless of the tail-spinning, the situation is far from a tailspin.
When the water recedes, zoo officials figure Nikica will just head
home. According to one zookeeper, "she loves mud more than life itself."
Of course, she might just find that she loves freedom more than mud.
Given that Nikica weighs about fifteen hundred kilograms, and can
backfire catastrophically at any time, I'm guessing what happens next is
up to her.
In the meantime, it's great to imagine that this is the song Nikica is
hearing in her head right now. Here are Heather Blush and the
Uppercuts, with "Restless".