* SCC: Unmarried Couples. The top court rules that unmarried couples who split are not entitled to the same rights as married couples.
* US Haggis Debate. A lover of the Scottish delicacy defends it, even though it has been in illegal in the US since 1971.
* Dolours Price Obituary. Remembering a former IRA militant, who was unapologetic about participating in violence during "The Troubles".
* Email: Caribou. One listener disagrees that snowmobilers are creating paths for wolves to hunt mountain caribou.
* Ross King Interview. Carol speaks with the Charles Taylor Prize-nominated author of "Leonardo and The Last Supper".
You can't live with 'em. But apparently you can live without their financial support.
This morning the Supreme Court of Canada ruled that unmarried couples in Quebec who split up do not have the same rights as married couples. The ruling was in regard to the case known as Eric versus Lola, which began in 2009. The couple was in a relationship that lasted ten years, and they also have three children together. After the couple split up, Lola went to court seeking alimony, which is a right available to divorcing married couples.
Lola was also seeking a lump sum payment of fifty million dollars and alimony payments of fifty-six thousand dollars per month. We should note that Eric is a millionaire.
With today's ruling, Quebec remains the only province that does not recognize common-law relationships as de facto marriages.
Anne-France Goldwater is the lawyer representing Lola. We reached Ms. Goldwater in Montreal.
|ALL KINDS OF MEAN/MAGNIFICENT SEVENS|
|RODNEY DILLARD|| - ||COMPOSER|
|MITCH JAYNE|| - ||COMPOSER|
|NEIL CAMERON|| - ||PRODUCER|
|MAGNIFICENT SEVENS || - ||POP GROUP|
|MAGNIFICENT SEVENS || - ||PRODUCER|
What does it take to be Canada's Parliamentary Budget Officer? Well, according to Kevin Page -- the only person to have held the position, and whose term ends at the end of March -- there are various key qualifications. Among them: knowledge of early childhood development, experience with smoke and mirrors, and the ability to cope with the ambitions of politicians who will put their careers ahead of the financial stability of the country.
Kevin Page's tongue-in-cheek job posting that he wrote to "As It Happens" was subsequently published on our news site, C-B-C-dot-C-A. Where various people added further resumé requirements for would-be Parliamentary Budget Officer.
From the comments section:"You also need a Jedi-like amount of tolerance and patience." And "He could've mentioned 'mind reader'." Also: "You forgot a plain old attack dog. Someone who would not be afraid to go for the throat. The ability to issue pink slips would also be a good addition to the job description."
Amongst all the additional job qualifications were comments of praise for Mr. Page himself, and how he's performed in the role. Including:
"I vote for Kevin Page to be re-instated as Budget Officer for the foreseeable future. This man is a shining light in our democracy, and should (if willing) be extended for an indefinite period. If politicians displayed a shred of the dignity and honesty, not to mention the commitment, that Page has demonstrated, our country would be in a much better place!"
And "Kevin Page should run for Prime Minister, he has what is needed to get things back on track."
Those are some of your comments on this story. To read them all, or to add your own, visit C-B-C-dot-C-A slash NEWS.
|LUCK IN THE VALLEY/ROSE, JACK|
|THRILL JOCKEY, THRILL 229|
|DENNIS CRUMPTON|| - ||COMPOSER|
|ROBERT SUMMERS|| - ||COMPOSER|
|JACK ROSE|| - ||GUITAR|
It's new a postage stamp to commemorate a wartime hero. But for a Winnipeg woman, seeing her image on that stamp was a bit of a shock. In 1945, Judith Kopstein was fourteen, and living with her family in Nazi-occupied Hungary. And she -- and tens of thousands of others -- was saved from the concentration camps by the efforts of one man.
That man was Raoul Wallenberg -- a Swedish diplomat who managed to extend the protection of Swedish citizenship to as many Jewish Hungarians as he could. He designed a special Swedish passport -- called the Schutz-Pass -- that protected the carrier from deportation.
To commemorate him, Canada Post has issued a stamp in his honour.
Today, Judith Kopstein -- now known as Judith Weiszmann -- still keeps her Schutz-Pass safe. An image of that pass, with her photo on it, is what appears on the new Canada Post stamps.
|FACE THE TRUTH/MALKMUS, STEPHEN|
|STEPHEN MALKMUS|| - ||COMPOSER|
|JICKS || - ||POP GROUP|
|STEPHEN MALKMUS|| - ||VOCALS|
He brought us Felicity, Lost, Fringe, and the hugely successful reboot of Star Trek. But can he restore credibility to what was once the most successful movie franchise of all time?
Yesterday, it was revealed that writer-director J-J Abrams would be bringing the next instalment of the Star Wars saga to the big screen.
The announcement had been eagerly anticipated by fans since Disney bought the rights to the franchise from George Lucas in October.
And the geeks are happy, if the reaction in the twitterverse is any indication.
Mr. Lucas, who wrote and directed the original Star Wars movie, and owned the the rights to the entire series, had been heavily criticized for the dubious quality of the three "prequel" films that came out since 1983's Return of the Jedi.
Although they did feature a chilling new villain, in the form of Jar-Jar Binks.
Anyway, now the torch has been passed to Mr. Abrams, things are looking up for Episode Seven of the genre-defining space opera.
Mr. Abrams initially demurred, saying he would be watching the next instalment of Star Wars as a, quote, "paying movie-goer." But he's an avowed superfan of the series, and, chances are, he sees it as the pinnacle of an already stratospheric career -- although he's yet to make any official comment.
However, back in 2007, he gave a TED talk, describing his ideas about writing for the screen, and the importance of so-called "mystery boxes," in the story, that viewers slowly unpack. And in that talk, he revealed his reverence for Star Wars.
Here's part of what he had to say.
|WHERE THE LIGHT GETS IN/JAFFA ROAD|
|AVIVA CHERNICK|| - ||COMPOSER|
|AVIVA CHERNICK|| - ||LYRICIST|
|CHRIS GARTNER|| - ||COMPOSER|
|AARON LIGHTSTONE|| - ||COMPOSER|
|DAVID DOMINGUEZ NAVARRO|| - ||TRANSLATOR|
|SUNDAR VISWANATHAN|| - ||COMPOSER|
|JEFF WILSON|| - ||COMPOSER|
|CHRIS GARTNER|| - ||PRODUCER|
|JAFFA ROAD || - ||FOLK GROUP|
That is the "Address to a Haggis", by Robert Burns.
Right now, proud Scots the world over are repeating that poem in honour of their traditional supper of "Stomach, tripe or guts." Because tonight is Burns Night -- held in honour of the eighteenth-century Scottish poet's birthday.
There's just one problem. In the United States, where thousands of Scottish expatriates are celebrating Burns Night, haggis is illegal. It has been ever since the US Department of Agriculture learned what was actually in haggis, back in 1971. So for the past forty-two years, Americans have had to make do with simulated haggis. Which may be the only thing more revolting than haggis itself.
Alex Massie is a former Washington correspondent for The Scotsman. He has devoted a considerable amount of time and energy toward the legalization of haggis in the US. We reached him today in Edinburgh.
She was a bomber -- and an icon.
Dolours Price was one of the most recognizable faces of the Irish Republican armed struggle against British rule.
This week, she was found dead in her Dublin home. She was sixty-two.
Ms. Price was well-known for being involved in two deadly acts of violence. One: the 1973 car bombing of the Old Bailey courthouse in London, in one person died, and more than two hundred people were injured. The other: the 1972 abduction and murder of Jean McConville, one of the "disappeared" -- people killed and buried in secret by the IRA during the period known as "The Troubles".
Ed Moloney has spent most of his career documenting "The Troubles". He is an Irish journalist and author who knew many inside the IRA -- including Dolours Price.
We reached Ed Moloney at his home in The Bronx, New York.
|SADDLE CREEK, 000043|
|CONOR OBERST|| - ||COMPOSER|
|BRIGHT EYES|| - ||POP GROUP|
I'm confused: is the driven snow pure, or not?
Last night, we spoke to Chris Ritchie, who heads the the Mountain Caribou Recovery Implementation Program for the Province of British Columbia. He said, in part, that snowmobilers are creating smooth pathways in the deep snow that make it easier for predators like wolves and cougars to hunt -- thereby, putting the already-low population of mountain caribou increased danger.
Well, not everyone shared Mr. Ritchie's concerns. Kelly Bidder from Kimberley, BC sent this email:
"Wolves are a major predator of Mountain Caribou, but snowmobiles and their trails provide very little of interest to wolves. For one thing, trappers use snowmobiles, and will shoot or trap any wolf they can find -- and since wolves are not stupid, they stay well clear of the sound of a snowmobile. And if the snow is deep, the wolves will head for creeks or lay up until they can move around. rather than risk being trapped and shot on a snowmobile trail.
"Wolves stick to the valley bottoms, where the snow is shallower, which is where their main source of food is. Deer, elk, and moose all migrate to the valley bottoms where the snow is shallower and they can move around and feed. They can not do that up at higher elevations because of the deep snow. Mountain caribou stay up at the sub-alpine during the winter.
"Wolves do not follow snowmobiles into the high alpine in deep snow conditions where they can not move around without the use of a trail. Snowmobiles are irrelevant in regards to when wolves seek prey in the alpine areas."
Thank you Kelly Bidder from Kimberley, BC for your email. We'll continue to track this story.
|FLYING IN A BLUE DREAM|
|SATRIANI|| - ||COMPOSER|
|JOE SATRIANI|| - ||UNKNOWN|
Even if you've never seen the entire film, you're probably aware of that scene from "The Shining" -- in which a crazed axe-wielding hotel caretaker, played by Jack Nicholson, tries to hack through a bathroom door to get at his wife.
But there's one scene even most ardent fans of the movie haven't seen. That's because shortly after the release of "The Shining" in 1980, director Stanley Kubrick cut that two-minute sequence out completely.
Well, they may not be able to see it, but thanks to one very devoted disciple of "The Shining", eager enthusiasts will at least get to read it.
Lee Unkrich runs a website dedicated to all things Shining, called theoverlookhotel.com. And this week, he posted the pages from the original screenplay of that long-lost scene on the site.
We reached Mr. Unkrich -- who also happens to be the Academy-Award-winning director of the hit animated film "Toy Story 3" -- in San Francisco, California.
|ROBIN BOULIANNE|| - ||COMPOSER|
|ROBIN BOULIANNE|| - ||VIOLIN|
|OLIVIER HEBERT|| - ||DOUBLE BASS|
|MAZ || - ||JAZZ GROUP|
|MARC MAZIADE|| - ||ELECTRIC GUITAR|
|MARC MAZIADE|| - ||PRODUCER|
It's been reproduced in countless forms, from high art to kitsch. It was the basis for a series of silkscreens by Andy Warhol. There's one version that puts Homer Simpson at its centre. You can see it replicated in glossy art books, tacked up in dorm rooms, or on keychains and T-shirts.
More than five hundred years ago, Leonardo da Vinci put the finishing touches on his painting The Last Supper. And in his latest book, Leonardo and the Last Supper, author Ross King takes us back to fifteenth-century Italy to tell the story of that iconic masterpiece's creation. And he covers everything from what was on the menu for Jesus and his Apostles to Leonardo's ground-breaking way of depicting that famous episode from the Bible. All of it set against the backdrop of fifteenth-century war and political turmoil.
Ross King grew up in rural Saskatchewan, and now lives near Oxford, England. He's been widely praised for his books about other major figures in art history, including Michelangelo, the French Impressionists and Canada's own Group of Seven painters.
Leonardo and The Last Supper won last year's Governor General's Literary Award for non-fiction. Now it's in the running for another major non-fiction award: the Charles Taylor Prize.
Ross King joined Carol in our Toronto studio.
We are almost out of time for As It Happens for this Friday, January 25th.
The show was produced this week by Laurie Allan, Marc Apollonio, Kevin Ball, Natasha Fatah, Adam Killick, David McDougall, ...
Pedro Sanchez, Kate Swoger, Tomas Urbina and Jessica Walker. Our technicians this week have been Mark Thibideau, Tim Lorimer and Nima Shams. Reynold Gonsalves is the show director. The guy sitting next to me is also our writer.
We're also saying good-bye to our fabulous intern Jane Van-Koeverden. She officially started with us just after the holidays and has been hitting it out of the park ever since -- even when she's got a cold and sneezing. Jane's produced everything from stories about long-lost echidnas, to creepy swamp sounds to the fires in Australia. Jane, best of luck when you return to school and come back to AIH soon.
John Perry is the Senior Producer. And the Executive Producer of As It Happens is Robin Smythe.
We'd also like to thank some other people who have helped us out: Mary Lynk in Halifax -- who this week, nearly drowned in court documents, Steven Webb in Saint John, Elizabeth Hay in Ottawa, Marie Wadden in St. John's, Keith Hart and Brent Michaluk at Radio Archives, Barb Carey, Dave Seglins and Sujata Berry in Toronto, Gillian Rutherford in Edmonton, and Sean Prpick in Regina.
As It Happens will be back again on Monday. I'm Rick MacInnes-Rae. Good night.
And, I'm Chris Howden. Have a great weekend.