Part Three of The Current
It's Thursday, and we opened the virtual mail bag for your thoughts on the week that was at The Current. And to help me read your letters, Anna Maria was joined by Ian Hanomansing, reporter and host with CBC News The National and frequent Friday host of The Current. He'll be sitting in tomorrow and for the next few Fridays to come. He was in Vancouver.
Calgary Show: Monday and Tuesday of this week, The Current came to you from Calgary. And you can't go to Alberta without talking about the oil sands. We actually looked at them through the lens of our new season-long Game Changer project. Because whether you love them or hate them, there's no question the oil sands have changed the game.
Detractors say they've irrevocably altered the landscape, harming the environment and local communities but there is no question that the oil sands also represent unprecedented prosperity. It's estimated oil sands development creates almost 100 thousand jobs directly and indirectly across the country.
Tuesday on the program, we heard from Janet Annesley, Vice-President of Communications for the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers. And she addressed the idea of the proposed Keystone XL pipeline which would transport Alberta's bitumen to Texas for refining. And presumably, send refining jobs along with it. Then we heard from you.
On Tuesday 's program we also heard from Russell Tremblay. He lives in the Metis community of Conklin which is surrounded by the oil sands. After hearing from Russell, our listeners responded.
And our coverage from Alberta wasn't all oil sands, all the time. We also took a close look at 40 years of Conservative rule in the province. And who better to cast an eye over that history, than the man who planted the Tory flag back in 1971 -- former Alberta Premier Peter Lougheed. Tuesday on The Current, we asked him what has kept his party in power for so many years. We shared some listener mail on this discussion.
IRS & Tax Law: The long arm of the Internal Revenue Service. Last Thursday on The Current, we told you about a little known American provision that affects a lot of people living here, not to mention their pocketbooks.
According to IRS rules, Americans living abroad must disclose all accounts with more than $10,000. If they don't - they face some serious penalties. The problem is a lot of the estimated one million Americans living here never knew about the rules. And now they face voluntarily disclosing their accounts, and paying a lesser penalty - or risk the IRS coming after them.
We spoke to Maury Williams on The Current last Thursday. He came to Canada in the 1970s and became a Canadian citizen. This story sure did strike a nerve with listeners and we shared some of those letters.
Lyme Disease Update: We wanted to update you on a story we featured a little over a year ago about Lyme Disease. It's a difficult condition to diagnose because it mimics other illnesses. And its symptoms are wide ranging.
About nine years ago, Maureen McShane was bitten by a tick in her garden. She believes that innocuous little bite was the prelude to ten months of "living nightmare". Maureen McShane is a family doctor who now dedicates her practice to treating lyme disease. We spoke to her last year in June.
And now, more than a year later, a listener reached out to us with a handwritten note. A grateful listener and lyme disease sufferer, Sonja Fink read her letter to share her insight after she heard that interview. She's one of a burgeoning number of Lyme Disease patients being treated by Dr. Maureen McShane, who lives in Montreal but sees patients in Plattsburgh, NY. Dr. McShane joined us from Montreal.
Queen Portrait: Before we go, one more thought on a story that we did not cover on The Current. Last week, we learned that the Conservative government had ordered all Canadian embassies and foreign missions to hang the Queen's portrait. And they had to do it by today. So as the Queen's picture goes up around the world, we decided to check in with two people ... a monarchist and a republican for their take on this renewed emphasis on the Crown.
To weigh in on anything you hear on The Current, contact us here.
Last Word - Oil Sands Essay
As you heard, the oil sands remains a contentious piece of Canadian geography. Will it be a contentious piece of our history as well? The Voice has been thinking about this and believes urgent action is required. He got today's Last Word.
Other segments from today's show: