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Showing posts from April, 2020

We should focus on nutrition during the COVID-19 Pandemic

Our life may depend on us being healthy if we are infected by the COVID-19 virus.  All the evidence suggests that keeping healthy is important to avoiding having a severe case of COVID-19 virus infection. To be healthy we need to pay extra attention to getting exercise, to getting enough sleep, and to our nutrition.
This post will focus on nutrition. What is nutrition and what are the best nutritious foods during a pandemic? About this, there could be a lot of argument, though most will agree that a balanced diet with significant amounts of fruits and vegetables is a good place to start. For most, this also will include sufficient meat, including liver, to supply critical nutrients like iron and vitamin B12. Including plant based proteins in nuts, beans and lentils is also a good idea.
I have given the question - how can a person make a simple change or changes to have a better diet at the time of COVID-19 pandemic – a lot of thought.  I am going to suggest that we often overlook th…

Enjoying pickerel (walleye) for breakfast

In summer, when we are at the lake, Naomi and I enjoy having fresh caught fried fish for breakfast.  Recently, we have been having pickerel at home.  We get our fish locally from Gimli Fish on Pembina.  They are careful in following COVID-19 protocols and allow only a few people in the store at a time. But waits are usually short, and they currently have frozen pickerel which we thaw overnight in the fridge and then enjoy first thing in the morning.  I coat the fish with FISH CRISP, a tasty coating seasoning, and then fry it.   And as a plus we are supporting local businesses including local fishermen at a time then the fishermen are struggling.  I hope others will consider fish for breakfast.  It is delicious and it is also a healthy food!

Helpful links for support during the COVID-19 pandemic

Here are some helpful links for people seeking support or information during the COVID-19 pandemic
MB GOVT COVID INFO: https://www.gov.mb.ca/covid19/index.html
CERB; If you have stopped working because of COVID-19, the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) may provide you with temporary income support. The CERB provides $500 a week for up to 16 weeks.  https://www.canada.ca/en/services/benefits/ei/cerb-application.html
CESB; For post-secondary students and recent graduates who are ineligible for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit or for Employment Insurance, but who are unable to find full-time employment or are unable to work due to COVID-19, the government proposes to introduce the Canada Emergency Student Benefit (CESB). The CESB would provide $1,250 per month for eligible students, and $1,750 for students with dependents and those with permanent disabilities: https://www.canada.ca/en/department-finance/news/2020/04/support-for-students-and-recent-graduates-impacted-by-covid…

Colleges and Universities can be the launching pad for tourism and building tourism in our economy

Tourism has always been an important part of Manitoba's economy.   Even Brian Pallister has recognized this.  I have chosen to discuss tourism because many might think Universities and Colleges and not important to this industry when they are.  For virtually every industry colleges and universities make a contribution.  This comment provides an example using tourism of why colleges and universities play such an important role.

Success in tourism needs attractions which people want to visit.  In this we need to be good stewards of our resources.  As an example, Lake Winnipegosis was at one point recognized as a really important lake for fishing and for tourists to come to fish.  I believe there were, at one point, about 38 fishing lodges around Lake Winnipegoss, and it was a prime location for people from the United States to come as tourists to fish.   But sadly the fisheries on Lake Winnipegosis had poor stewardship under a succession of NDP and Conservative governments in Manit…

Colleges and Universities are the launching pad for creativity

Creativity is critical in today's world.   Richard Florida has written about how important having creative people is to successful cities.  If we are to do well economically, socially and environmentally we need to nurture creativity in people.   Universities and Colleges have for centuries been an important place to simulate creative thinking in art, in science, in philosophy and in so many other areas.  Creativity is needed to generate new ideas and new thinking.  Creativity is needed to communicate new ideas and new ways of doing things.

At a time when creativity is so important and when colleges and universities are so important to help students learn to be creative thinkers, we need to be expanding the role and the importance of universities and colleges instead of shrinking them.   Brian Pallister and his cabinet are wrong-headed and poor at planning for the future when they cutback funding to the universities and colleges of our province.

Manitoba Liberals say  to Mr. Palli…

Universities and colleges are a launching pad for research and innovation

Over many decades, universities and colleges have made an extraordinary contribution to research and to innovation.

An important example is the work that has gone into developing approaches to addressing diseases like COVID-19.   The contributions made by people working in or people who trained in universities and colleges has been enormous.

The contribution of universities and colleges goes far beyond research and innovation in health.  The University of Manitoba has made big contributions to the design and testing of structures like bridges and roads. 

Many businesses and industries have been built on research and innovation carried out in universities and colleges or by people trained in universities and colleges.  This includes a wide variety of industries from the aerospace industries so important to Manitoba, to the mining industries, to agriculture, to information technology and communications.

Today, when businesses are having to make adjustments in many different ways in th…

Universities and Colleges are a launching pad for students

Universities and colleges play a really important part in launching students on careers.  We know how important this is from the evidence that students having a college or university education are more likely to find and keep jobs.  The difference a university or college education makes is substantial.  And in today's COVID-19 haunted world where more people are working from home, it is the college and university educated people who are being more successful in working from home.

Following the extremely difficult times we are going through at the moment, it will be very important for people to have opportunities to learn new knowledge and new skills.    There is a lot of interest in people taking on-line courses and a lot of need for people to learn new things so that they are better able to contribute in a society where we may be doing more on line.  It has been fascinating for me to talk to high school teachers who are exploring the world of on-line teaching and developing new …

Colleges and Universities are the launching pad for our society - they are needed more than ever now

At no time in the history of our province have colleges and universities been needed more than now.  Our economy has benefited enormously from the research, innovation and training which has come from our universities and colleges.  It is from universities and colleges that have come much of the research on which we now depend in our fight against the COVID-19 virus.   It is colleges and universities which have trained so many of the people we are now relying on to battle at the front lines of this fight.   It is colleges and universities that we rely on today to train and retrain people for the world after COVID-19.   It is universities and colleges that we need because they have trained people and are involved with helping to set safety standards which will allow us to move forward safely in reopening businesses.  We are finding that it is those who have been trained at universities and colleges who are disproportionately able to work from home at this time.   We need on-line educa…

An awful and uncaring Pallister government goes after the most vulnerable children in our province

Like a sleuth in the night, the Pallister government is cunningly using a bill, bill 34, [updated this is now (Oct 2020) Bill 2] called the Budget Implementation and Tax Statutes Amendment Act 2020, to prevent the return of millions of dollars which was taken away from children in the care of the government. 

The monies in question are called the "Children's Special Allowances" or the "federal special allowances for children".  In brief, under Jean Chretien and Paul Martin,  a Canada Child Benefit was established to help support children.  For children in the care of child and family services, where the parents are not directly looking after the children the money is paid to the agencies to help support the children.  There was a time when these monies were being used effectively by child welfare agencies to support children.   Some agencies used these funds in part to provide services to help the children they were looking after and in part into a trust fund …

Bird watching from home - a friendly Bald Eagle

This morning, as I was working on issues related to home care and the Covid-19 pandemic, Naomi called.  Just outside the window where she was working on a commissioned art piece, was the Bald Eagle below: 

Cries of hurt, anguish, distress and calls of mismanagement echo around the province in response to Pallister government's cuts to home care.

Since the Pallister government's cuts to home care came into effect, there have been many who have spoken out in alarm. 
As the Winnipeg Free Press reported "The Winnipeg Regional Health Authority has temporarily suspended home care services considered to be non-essential - including bathing, laundry, cleaning and respite"  I am hearing these cutbacks are also occurring in regional health authorities outside of Winnipeg.  The cutbacks are not small.  For example "about half the residents at five of the company's [Homestead Manitoba] assisted living facilities are affected."  
The reaction I have seen and communication sent to me has been extraordinarily strong, and has been coming from reasonable and responsible Manitobans.  Cutting back on home care will result in more people getting sick and having to be in institutions including personal care homes and hospitals.   It will also result in more visitors to existing facilities as family members scramble to fi…

PC's Letter Telling Municipalities to Lay Off Workers During Pandemic is Beyond Irresponsible

On Friday April 17th, we learned that the Pallister government has written to municipalities to give them advice about cutbacks which the Pallister government believes they should consider implementing.  Our press release (below) responded to this letter.  WINNIPEG - Manitoba Liberals say the Pallister Government's decision to suggest municipalities lay people off is beyond irresponsible. After public health, the single greatest priority for governments must be saving the economy and doing everything they can to make sure that people keep their jobs. Not only is Manitoba the only province to provide no direct financial assistance to people or businesses, but they are choosing to make unemployment and pay cuts worse while urging others to do the same. The PCs plans to layoff or reduce work for public service will do terrible harm to Manitoba's economy. It means Manitoba customers will have less money to spend at Manitoba businesses. Even more critically, less money to pay their r…

There is a way forward without the unsettling and destabilizing cutbacks being made by the Pallister government

On Friday, April 17, Dougald Lamont and the Manitoba Liberals outlined an approach which will allow Manitoba and our municipalities to move forward in a more positive way without having the destabilizing Pallister cutbacks.  Our press release is below:  WINNIPEG - Dougald Lamont, Leader of the Manitoba Liberal Party and MLA for St. Boniface, says the Federal Government can avoid austerity and stabilize the economy by having the Bank of Canada directly provide financing to all three levels of government. Lamont pointed to the example of the UK, where The Bank of England has started financing the UK government's operations to help cope with the downturn due to the COVID-19 pandemic. A number of prominent economists, including Nouriel Roubini, Mariana Mazzacatto, and the Financial Times have all endorsed having central banks directly provide funding to governments. The Financial Times and others have pointed out that it means lowered borrowing costs. Lamont said there is no need for th…

Dougald Lamont speaks about the COVID-19 pandemic during the one-day sitting of the Manitoba Legislature

On Wednesday, April 15 Dougald Lamont spoke during the one-day sitting of the Manitoba Legislature about the COVID-19 pandemic, its impact on Manitobans and the need for action now.  Dougald's speech is below: "I want to thank everyone who's stepped up in this crisis. Merci à tout le monde dans notre système de santé, dans nos garderies, nos épiceries. Thank you to our health-care workers, child-care workers, grocery store workers and everyone who's providing services on the front lines, and thank you to every Manitoban who is part of this effort of fighting COVID-19 by staying home and staying safe. And our deepest condolences to all those who've lost loved ones. We do need to step up to provide people security, especially job security, in this crisis. There are times in our history where the private economy has gone up in flames and jobs and businesses go up in smoke. And at times like this, the worst thing we can do is add to the conflagration with more layoffs, f…