Tuesday, August 26, 2008 | Categories: Episodes
It's Tuesday, August 26th.
Stephane Dion says he thinks Stephen Harper could be convinced to hold off calling an election for now.
Currently, he also thinks his "Green Shift" tax plan can be comfortably distilled into credible, 30-second sound bites that will galvanize public opinion.
This is The Current.
Maple Leaf Recall
The tainted meat outbreak in Ontario has now claimed twelve lives. Yesterday, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency concluded that at least six of those deaths were caused by Listeria linked to tainted meat. Five more deaths are still being investigated. And another 29 people have been made sick. Over the weekend, officials confirmed that Maple Leaf Food's processing plant in Toronto is the source of the outbreak. The company has responded by recalling more than 220 products and more than half-a-million kilograms of meat. It's a plan the company estimates will cost it 20-million-dollars.
The size of the recall is staggering. It's also an indication of how concentrated the meat-processing industry has become. And for farmers like Don Mills, that's part of the problem. He runs a family farm in Granton, Ontario, just north of London, and is on the national executive of the National Farmers' Union.
The outbreak of tainted meat has raised a lot of concerns about how the meat-processing industry operates. We requested an interview with Maple Leaf, but no one was available to us this morning.
Now for some perspective on the concerns, we're joined now by Jim Laws. He's the Executive Director of the Canadian Meat Council -- a group that represents the Canadian meat-processing industry. He joined us in our Ottawa studio.
Listen to Part One:
Dark Days - Documentary
By now, pretty much everyone living in Canada is familiar with the story of Maher Arar ... how he was detained in New York City, flown to Syria and tortured. Many people -- especially faithful listeners of this show -- will also know the stories of Ahmed Almaati, Abdullah Almalki and Muayyed Nuredin ... three other Canadians who found themselves in remarkably similar situations.
But few people know their stories as intimately as Kerry Pither. She's a human rights activist who helped get Maher Arar released from Syria and acted as a spokesperson for his family. She's been looking into the other three cases since then. And she's found what she says are some disturbing patterns. She's laid them out in her new book, Dark Days: The Story of Four Canadians Tortured in the Name of Fighting Terror and she's in Toronto.
Listen to Part Two: