Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Bring it down!

I'm serious. DD and Stephen MacNeil - BRING IT DOWN!

This budget is an absolute disaster!!! When the highlight is a tax credit for people who join gym that might save them all of 10 dollars on their taxes, that's pretty pathetic.


I can't believe I agree with something Michael from Cape Breton said today. He said "Bring it down". There must be an election. Bring it down!

The only winners: Nova Scotia post-secondary students and people living with colorectal cancer. I chatted with Cathy Connors yesterday, Jim Connors' wife, and she thought Jim would have been very pleased about the government's decision. It's too bad Judy Young and Jim Connors had to die before it happened. The government even admitted it was a political decision. Rick did a great interview with Pat Connors today, Jim's son, who is pleased his dad made a difference. We're happy too, and he is sadly missed.

As for the electricity thing, it's just so shocking I can't even believe it actually happened. I don't know how long they think the middle class can prop everyone up. The middle class is quickly becoming the lower class with tax hikes, the price of food, gas, etc. It's, as we say in today's Hotline poll, it's Armageddon, baby!

I'm actually kind of in a better mood today, because everyone else was depressed on the show today. One caller even went as far as to tell me he was sad, sad Bob, in fact! Knowing I'm not alone in my utter and complete frustration with what we have to deal with here makes me feel a little better anyway. Thanks!

I don't know if you caught what went down at the end of the show. First of all, I think Rick and Sue Uteck have called a truce. They were very friendly, even agreeing with one another!! I think they were both shocked since they've been kind of nemeses for so long. Secondly, Jim at the very end called Rick "Rickster", which made me grimace because Rick thinks I put everyone up to it and I do not! Then he told me he loves Ben from PEI! Obviously I do we had a moment. Jim Smith and I united over our admiration for the crazy dude from the Island.

The world has officially changed: Ontario is a have not province, and Newfoundland doesn't need equalization anymore. Wow. You have got to hand it to Danny Williams, that province is only going up! Where's N.S. going? God, the answer is too depressing. Despite that, I definitely want to wish Michael Baker well. He's fighting cancer and obviously we wish him the best. For a N.S. Conservative, I've always thought he was a pretty good guy.

Well, that's my rant for today. It's getting sunny outside too, so the day is looking up.

Can you believe Fred MacGillivary? I don't know what to say.



Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Paid political mafia

Everyone on the Hotline was fired up today! Maybe they were inflamed by the Premier constantly hovering over our studio with his helicopter! You may have heard him a few times today during the show!

Today's title comes from a caller, simply fed up with the current state of everything. Add me to that list as well. Everyone's concerned about BPA, etc. I'm not. I really feel doom about the future. Food prices skyrocketing, hoarding of food, high fuel prices, taxes. I think it was the story about the dirt cookies in Haiti that affected me so much, I can't shake the feeling it gave me. Yeah, it's doom and gloom week on the Hotline! I agree with the statement you shouldn't just complain, because that's empty unless you do something about it. That being said, I don't think I would want to run for office because the problems are too great! Where do you start? How do you circumvent the bureaucratic system in place that is designed to take (waste) time because it gives people good paying government jobs? We're in a lose-lose situation, I'm so sorry to be so morose!

One thing amused me today. I realized when Rick does his Rodney MacDonald impersonation about telling Nova Scotians to "take the bus", all of a sudden Rodney turns into a French Canadian! It's hilarious!

So, how do you feel about the government taking back its electricity rebate? We were kind of confused about it this morning, but now from what I can tell, the electricity portion of your heat will still be rebated, but not the TV/lights part. I sense a rent increase coming on....
Looks like another ploy to keep people addicted to oil, which is totally the best.idea.ever.

Well, this grey day is not improving my dismal outlook on the future of Nova Scotia. I just read some of the snapshots of the provincial budget - that's not helping either! More on that tomorrow!



Monday, April 28, 2008

His hypocrisy

That's the reason I don't like Stephen Harper. Plain and simple.

One of our callers coined a new term for Rodney MacDonald today. "Premier Marie Antoinette" has a nice ring to it, doesn't it?

For those who have heard the expression "Let them eat cake!", here's a little background on it. You can see how fitting it is! (Except there is doubt that Marie Antoinette actually said it)

Rick had Peter Duffy on to close the show talking about a fascinating Nova Scotia connection to one of the most famous Nazis in history. Here's the link:

Did you read the Globe and Mail this weekend? Overall, it was an incredibly depressing experience for me. Not that it was poorly written, but there were so many incredibly depressing stories, including one about wild salmon stocks in B.C. becoming almost extinct and this story, which I plan to keep talking about because it's so shocking. I think I can realize what is ethnocentric and what isn't, and I'm sorry, this must be stopped!!

I hope Rick reads this and is as shocked as I was. I had never heard of this practice and it MUST be stopped!

Back to Nova Scotia, this Bill Gillis character sounds like he was someone truly dedicated to protecting the public purse. Buses, bagged lunches, etc. Wow, it's sad how we're shocked by something like that nowadays.

Hey, one of my friends here at work told me a pretty disturbing story. She says she she went to a local sporting goods store looking for a new, non-number 7 plastic water bottle. She went into the store and found a huge display of #7 bottles. She asked the clerk about it, referring to the fact a lot of the big guys had taken the bottles off the shelves. She said they weren't doing that and they were going to let the customer make the choice. My friend made the very valid retort that that move helps customers who haven't heard about Bisphenol A use the offending products! She says the clerk seemed disinterested in the whole issue, so she took her business elsewhere.

I'm jumping around a lot here, but there were so many issues today! Caller Don, a South-end resident, brought up the South End truck traffic issue to Dave McCusker today. Then he wrote an e-mail to Rick comparing that to Africville. I thought that was a wee bit of a stretch, did you?

Well, enjoy the day. It looks like it's clouding over, sadly and we've got more rain on the way this week.



Friday, April 25, 2008

Jeeves, ready the chopper


How can the Premier or any members of cabinet really take our gas concerns seriously when they don't even pay their own gas!?!

We had an all-open Friday free for all today, but I kind of messed up the first hour as I mistakenly thought we were talking about sports! Oops. Sorry for the couple of people I told to call back after 11. My bad.

I was also a bad girl during the 11 o' clock news when Chris started his story about the monkey in New Brunswick and the fact the monkey's name is "April" just really struck me as funny, so I started laughing and then Chris started laughing on the air too. Sorry!

Onto something more serious - did you hear this story today?

50 shots! This story is absolutely outrageous, I hope someone raises it on Monday.

Too bad about the Mooseheads, eh? That is so strange that Brad Marchand was benched. Someone called me off the air to say he heard something going down in the dressing room prior to the game and that's why he was a healthy scratch. Rick asked Marcel Patenaude about it though and he denied anything like that, although he was very vague. Maybe John Moore can shed some light onto this...

Well, it looks like it's trying to become sunnier outside! When I got off the air there were flurries!!! I'm glad I didn't take my snow tires off yet. The weekend looks kind of crappy, but let's make the best of it, okay?

Have a great weekend!


Thursday, April 24, 2008

The Mayor's reality check

Again, I get a reality check from the Hotline, this one from Mayor Kelly himself.

I usually chat with the Mayor for a few seconds before he gets on and I start droning on about how depressing the weather was. I had no idea what Rick was talking to him about, I thought it was just city business. The Mayor told me it was better than snow and that I had to change my perspective. I told him he was the most optimistic person I've ever known and he said, "You have to be". Little did I know why. His brother has leukemia and he's donating his stem cells to his brother to hopefully get him better.

I'm not depressed about the weather anymore.

If you want to check out the program Mayor Kelly told us about, here's the link:

So, we played trivia today and well, I sucked! I could barely answer any questions as the lifeline. It was not my best lifeline performance, I'm sorry!!! I did get a question right about Lorne Green and brought up the fact he hosted my favourite show when I was a kid called "Lorne Green's New Wildnerness". Rick hadn't heard of it, so I promised him I'd post a link. Here it is:'s_New_Wilderness

Does anyone remember this show, or is it just me? Congrats to Paul, our new champion today!
Now I know that Mud Creek is now called Wolfville. My life is complete. You might have heard Ben doesn't call Rick "Rickster" anymore. He calls him "Me favourite addiction". Nice one!

Anyway, time to write some news, talk to you tomorrow!



Wednesday, April 23, 2008

The truth is the truth.

So says Rick Simpson.

He was in today and he's very convincing. Although I'd have to test it on myself to see if hemp oil works to cure diseases, I am with him on the fact that cancer is a business and there's no business in cures. Pharmaceutical companies make billions of dollars off disease, disease prevention and pain mitigation, bottom line.

If you want to chat with Rick, his phone number is: 902-545-2285 or you can reach him by e-mail:

Or you can see him in person tomorrow at the Universalist Unitarian Church at 5500 Inglis St. from 11-2. Rick says he's going to show his film "Run from the Cure" and then tell you how to make hemp oil. Rick (Howe) and I were talking about how it's natural to be skeptical, but then how do you explain all these people coming out of the woodwork saying they were cured?? Anyway, if you go to the meeting call us on Friday and tell us about it!

Here's the other website talked about:, that's the group "Maritmers Unite for Medical Marijuana".

Hey, some good news for Home Depot! They've pulled pesticides that are banned under the HRM by-law off the shelves of their stores! It's nice to hear about a business being a good corporate citizen for a change.

An interesting tidbit that I checked after someone called me off air to ask: Moncton has 1 mayor and 10 councillors!!! 10! Granted, their population is only 117-thousand. But I was thinking about Windsor, Ontario aka my hometown where the population is nearing 300-thousand - and they have 1 mayor and 10 councillors! It's actually a good set up in Windsor. They have city council and then they have county council which governs the rest of Essex County. Smart people, those Windsorites!!! Moncton has a pretty cool website too - it's

So, are you a Rick Simpson believer? Let us know tomorrow. Plus, we're playing trivia!! I'm so excited!



Tuesday, April 22, 2008

The sleaze runs thick

Rick came up with another great title today! Thanks, boss! (I'm being very careful not to call him "Rickster")

My second choice for today's title was "Panacea of joy" which is something Lee Cohen spoke about during hour number two. Cohen was in talking about the perceptions and challenges facing immigrants and Canadians today and it was interesting to hear the immigrant side of things and how Canada is perceived by others. Indeed although Canada is a great country, it's not the be all and end all, the land of milk and honey as some may think. Although I think immigrants can get a raw deal in this country, I kind of had to agree a little with Ross who says it does seem a bit unfair that immigrants come over and then are entitled to all the services we are overtaxed for. A couple of people called me off the air to express support for the position caller Fred took today, talking about how immigrants are ruining our way of life. I wished they would have gone on the air, it's an interesting debate and one people don't really talk about much for fear of being labelled "racist".

If the Liberals had a strong leader, the Conservatives would sooooo be going down right now. Good for Stephen Dion for saying the Conservatives won the election by cheating, but he's just not strong enough! I think it's going to be a long time before there is another majority government in this country.

Well, I'm going to get some lunch and get out in this sunshine before it disappears for the week.

Have a good day!

Ambe r

Monday, April 21, 2008

You're in prison, you idiot

Thanks to Rick for the title today!

I wanted to find a link to the Jim Carrey film "Liar, Liar". There's a scene that perfectly encapsulates my feelings towards the prisoners in Burnside feeling hard done by. I'll try to summarize here. I forget how, but in the film Jim Carrey cannot tell a lie and he's a lawyer. He gets a call from a client and his secretary passes over the phone and says "So and so is on the phone for you. He's been arrested again" Jim Carrey grabs the phone and says:


That pretty much sums up my stance on the whole thing.

We heard a pretty memorable quote from Fall River area councillor Krista Snow today on her love for Elton John. When asked about the possibility of the singer coming to Halifax she said, "I'd walk over broken glass and catpoop to drink his bathwater." Um, okay!! I'm a fan too, but I'm not sure if I'd go that far. Pretty crappy about Paul McCartney, eh? That did kind of seem too good to be true. That concert would have been amazing and fantastic advertising for HRM. Do you get the impression that Mayor Kelly is really trying to get a concert as a feather in his cap for the election in October?

Lee Cohen, Halifax's best known immigration lawyer, will be in the studio tomorrow and I was telling Rick I'm really curious to get an update certain cases like the Bondarenkos and Sonja Petjzel (probably not spelled correctly).

Barry Barnet called after Rick talked about a story involving the Health Promotion Minister today. Apparently, BB locked his keys in his car and then submitted the receipt for the taxpayer to pick up! Rick didn't think that was kosher and made that clear on the air and BB ended up calling and telling us it was an oversight, it was submitted in error and he's definitely paying for that little mistake himself. Good to know, thanks for the call!

Jeez, do you think if the federal Conservatives were actually as transparent as they make themselves out to be, they would have invited all the media to a news conference over the weekend, not just a select friendly few?? If they have nothing to hide and didn't do anything wrong, why are they working so hard to spin this story? Sickening, it truly is.

Well, that's it for me. I'm trying to open to put a link to that Jim Carrey clip. It's a classic and if I get it, I'll post it later.

Have a good Monday!



Friday, April 18, 2008


That's the angel of Genelle Guzman-McMillan.

I hope you heard her story today, it was riveting. She was the last person to be rescued from the World Trade Centre after 9-11. She spent 27 hours buried under rubble. The part that made me get goosebumps is when she said someone named Paul came to her and held her hand until she was rescued. Welll, she has tried to find Paul for the last 6 years and it turns out, no one named Paul was on any of the rescue teams during 9-11. She says she had an angel, Paul, who helped save her life. Chills.

You can read more here in this fascinating article from Time:

We also had a chance to speak to Gloria McCluskey today who is hoping to be released from the hospital tomorrow after knee surgery. As per usual, Gloria is on it, calling it like is, being the real, awesome person she is. Nothing fazes her, not even pain! Feel better, Gloria!!

A few people have called me to tell me about the number 7 plastics in their houses. One man says his big 1 litre ketchup is a #7 and Sandy told us today her deoderant is a #7. I think it's kind of crazy that although the government has said it's a dangerous chemical....nothing is going to be done about it right away! It's dangerous - deal with it is the message the government is sending. Uh, thanks!

I liked what Barry had to say about a 10 cent surcharge for coffee at Tim's. As much as I love Roll up the Rim to Win, it must change. They need to give people an incentive not to use the cups. It's a great promotion, but I'm so sick of seeing Tim Hortons cups on the ground. It is absolutely gross out there with all the litter. Right outside of our building on Russell Street, it's an absolute sty. Seriously, I might bring a garbage bag and some gloves and go pick-up the trash next week. I mean, the city is at fault if they aren't emptying their garbage bins that are overflowing. However, people are at fault for being lazy pigs and not taking their garbage with them and throwing it away! Plus, there's the issue of throwing stuff in the public garbages that should be recycled! People need to look at the fiscal realities of littering. Taxes just went up....just think of the better uses there are for that 2-million dollars alloted to picking up your trash! Think about it.

Well, that's my rant for today. It looks like a great weekend ahead, I'm excited for it.

Oh, we heard some sad news today, but we're all confident it's going to be okay. Al Hollingsworth announced he has prostate cancer and he told us so that other men would go get a check-up! Al says they've caught it early enough that he's confident he's going to be okay. I think Bill Casey would agree - get it checked before it's too late! We love you, Uncle Al, good luck with the surgery in May and we can't wait until you're back on the air with us, eviserating the government with your good sense!!!

Have a great one and we'll chat with you on Monday. We'll have a couple of councillors in, so have your questions/concerns/rants ready!



Thursday, April 17, 2008

Poor Spelling

I have to get this off my chest before I forget! Two crazy spelling errors yesterday that made me stop in my tracks.

The first was spotted at a restaurant near work. I was about to go in but was stopped in my tracks by this sign:

sorry we are out of olote of veggies

That's exactly how it was written! Then I was walking home and I saw at another restaurant:

Chicken Solvlaki

What is Solvlaki, exactly?

Anyway, it was just so funny/sad yesterday seeing these spelling errors at every turn. I misspell sometimes too...but who can't spell "a lot"?

Peter Duffy was in during hour number 2 today and he made an incredibly interesting point right at the very end. He thinks there may be a slight chance people are depending on the government too much for things. My generation is bombarded with saving for the future, getting RRSPs, investing, etc. Maybe seniors now are the last generation that weren't taught that? Peter says he knew he had to work hard and save and he's still working. Obviously there are going to be instances where people fall through the cracks, people who have been injured on the job, death, divorce, etc. But are there people who just lived recklessly, didn't save and now are crying for the government to help? Peter was wondering and I'm wondering that too. Are there people out there who don't think they are responsible for themselves? There's also a rule I'm living by - until I can afford it, I'm not having kids.

Budget drama continues at city hall. As Steve Streatch said to us today: "The rhetoric is so thick you can cut it with a knife". Ha. Apparently they're going to wrap it up today too with a tax increase. Let's just hope they got rid of that fog machine.

It is another stunning day! Rain on the way tonight and tomorrow though, so enjoy this! Paul Hollingsworth will be in the studio for our "media open hour" tomorrow at 10. Talk to you then!



Wednesday, April 16, 2008


It's just so frustrating and sad the way seniors are treated in this province. Agree with it or not, we had Evelyn Oakley on the show today and it was heartbreaking. She lost her husband on Monday, is having heart surgery this afternoon and because she's ailing, faces losing her bed at Northwood. Her attitude is awesome though, she says she's a "feisty, Irish lady" who's not going out without a fight.

Then after hearing about these ingrate prisoners complain about conditions it dawned on me:


Unreal! This province (but admittedly it's not just N.S.) drives me nuts!

What is going on at the Burnside jail?? Seriously - everyone gets take-out? Prisoners are being transferred in taxis? I'm with Bill Estabrooks on this one - there are some serious issues relating to the leadership down there. Plus, where is Jermaine Carvery?? He's still missing and it's just a matter of time before he turns up again. There's going to be another heist where people's lives are ruined because I'm sure he needs money. Just wait - it's coming.

Another maddening day on the Hotline - give us a call tomorrow! Let it out, it feels good!

Take care,


Tuesday, April 15, 2008




1. A street urchin.
2. A person of the lowest class.


gutter·snipe (-snīp′)
a child of the slums who spends most of his or her time in the streets: contemptuous term applied to anyone regarded as having the manners, morals, etc. of the gutter

From (my personal favourite)

Gutter Snipe

A dirty, hairy homeless man who lives in alleys and survives on cats, banana peels and puddle water.

The war of words continues between Paul Watson, Danny Williams, and Loyola Hearn. Hmmm, not to be cynical but do you think Danny maybe called Paul Watson a "terrorist" to maybe change the headlines in the paper that are beating him up for this botched breast cancer test scandal in NFLD? Just asking.

I do think it's kind of funny that Farley Mowat is in on this debacle as well, throwing out the word "Guttersnipe" and paying the bonds for the crew in jail yesterday.

Today was really interesting. I'll go back to something I said last week. If you're against something, that's great - it's better for the show that way! However, I wish people would come at issues without resorting to personal attacks. Make an intelligent argument for yourself and people will probably concede on some level. Both sides in the seal debate come at each other with such incivility - why go personal? I want to come out and say I'm against the seal hunt but I can't. It's my own personal hatred of hypocrisy. I'm not a vegan or a vegetarian, so how can I be against the slaughter of seals and be for the slaughter of chickens?? It's speciesism, so I can't go there.

I heard something so sad today that made me forget this seal business for a while. Rick mentioned the food riots in Haiti and how some of the people were eating dirt cookies. That hit me like a tonne of bricks. We have so much food here!!! Even if you're poor, there are a lot more options than eating dirt. That gives you some perspective about the difference between poor people in Canada and poor people in Haiti.

It does suck that seals are being killed. But maybe we have to focus on the plight of fellow human beings once in a while too.

I feel guilty for breaking for lunch. This is why I love the Hotline; it gives me some much needed perspective from time to time.

Take care,


Monday, April 14, 2008

Eco Goons

Thanks to Grumpy Barry for the title today!

It was either going to be "Eco Goons" or "Black Ops". If you look at it from the government side, the Sea Sheperd Conservation Society are definitely goons. If you look at it from the Society's standpoint - this Black Ops, Tom Clancy style takedown that Rick talked about today was completely out of control. I'm going to have to agree with the Globe and Mail and Rick on this one - sub-machine guns? Black clad Mounties? The government is cool with the Coast Guard illegally boarding a foreign-registered ship in international waters, but hasn't said boo about the Coast Guard's botched tow job that killed 4 sealers? What's the priority besides Loyola Hearn's personal beef with Paul Watson? Can you believe Hearn's quote this morning "Welcome to the new Dodge. " This guy needs to get a grip. I can't wait for Question Period today!

So, thanks to caller Bernard for alerting us to changes to the government's Pharmacare plan. As of April 1st, there is no 30 dollars flat rate co-pay. As of April 1st, seniors have to pay 33% of the cost to a maximum of $382. It says right on the website that seniors are paying more and that's a shame. Here's a link to read more and there's also a FAQ for the changes that happened on April 1.

Here's a link to Russell Wangersky's website. We had him in the studio during hour number 2 talking about his book "Burning Down the House" about his days as a volunteer firefighter. Riveting hour, let's hope his bad dreams start to abate soon.

Tomorrow, an hour about the seal hunt! Bridget Curran, an anti-sealing activist will be in taking your calls during hour number 2.



Friday, April 11, 2008

Where are you Captain Corky??

Apparently, Captain Corky had his own show on CJCH television.

We had a TONNE of calls about the golden age of TV, to kind of coincide with what CTV is doing on its supperhour newscasts this week, airing some old clips of some of the stars of yore. The best part about today was that I was able to speak with Jerbear and we had him on for a few minutes with Steve Murphy. If it's not clear - I HEART JERBEAR!!! He's so funny, gracious and awesome. Love him! That would be awesome if Rick could track down some Hello Metro clips. I haven't heard any either, I've just heard the premise of some of them and it's absolutely hysterical. One caller brought up Another World, which I didn't think was that big of a deal, but turns out Atlantic Canadians adored that soap opera! Steve Murphy said the day Another World was cancelled was the busiest day on the Hotline!!! Hilarious! It was a good soap opera though. I loved the villianous Carl!

Rick pointed out today that Calgary got 25 centimetres of snow yesterday and they didn't cancel school! I think Rick definitely has a point. It seems like 6 days cancelled this year is a little much. I lived in Calgary from the age of 4-9 and I remember really having to bundle up when I walked to school. In fact, it was so cold we had to put heat packs in our mittens and our boots to stay warm!

So, are you going to take a "Staycation" this year? Makes sense, with the price of gas. It also makes sense because sometimes you go on vacation and you're go, go, go and then you come back and you need a vacation from your vacation! I think I'm going to go to Ontario for a few days this summer and then spend the rest of the time chillin' on my deck, looking at some water, maybe enjoying a brew or 2. I'm happy with the weather we've had this week, it has been incredible.

Well, a rainy weekend ahead, but try to enjoy it anyway!



Thursday, April 10, 2008

What is the matter with Nova Scotia?

Someone posed that question and I wish I had the answer.

But, if that little query was solved, we wouldn't have a show. So, let's just leave it alone!

That being said, any negativity about this Paul McCartney concert could really backfire on us! People were so happy about it yesterday and then today talking about boycotts and things? Unreal! Rick thinks it's great that everyone complains constantly (well, his job does depend on it), but I think sometimes we take it a little too far.

These personal attacks are a little much. If you're going to criticize someone, at least come at it intellectually. A couple of people called me off the air talking about Dawn Sloane, and the basis of their argument, to me, was that they don't like her because she's an opinionated woman. I know Dawn. She's a hard working, intelligent person and if you're going to dislike her, back it up with some rationale, a council decision, something. Going at it at such a base level is so disconcerting.

Back to Paul McCartney, has he commented on the seal hunt lately? He's a vegetarian, so obviously an animal lover. But, I don't remember him speaking out about the seal hunt lately. That kind of seemed like Heather Mills' issue and he was just supporting his wife. I'll try to google it and find out if he's still vehemently against it. I do know he was for the sealers receiving some sort of compensation if they did ban the seal hunt. He was pretty reasonable on Larry King that time, unlike his wife who appeared to be "difficult".

Totally off topic - the Masters starts today! Any chance Mike Weir can do it again or is it all Tiger? I love watching golf. There's something meditative about it, or as some would say "boring".

So, Curtis Sliwa is coming to town in early May to graduate some recruits, and the new Guardian Angels will be patrolling in the middle of May. Very interesting. We'll have to wait and see what kind of effect they're going to have. I really hope Curtis comes into the studio, that will be interesting!!!!

Anyway, that's it for me. Have a good day!


Wednesday, April 9, 2008

I'd like to be alive

That's what caller Ross said when requesting that Darrell Dexter bring down the government during this session of the House of Assembly. He says he's a senior and he's been waiting for years! As per usual, DD's response was measured and intelligent, but sometimes people just want to hear someone lose it, I know I do. Not just because it's great radio (because it is), but because it denotes some passion. I know DD is in the game for the right reasons, but he's so damn smart he could just tear the Premier apart. I know that's not his style, but it sure would be fun to hear!!!

Dr. Peter McKenna from UPEI certainly didn't hold back, did he. He railed against the governments of Atlantic Canada for being complicit in ruining people's lives by keeping VLTs around. He unleased some damning evidence on the show today about how there are no records of how many people might take their own lives because of addictions to VLTs and indicated in one province, they don't even ask the question even though it's required. It's far too damaging to governments. We actually heard from one caller who told DD 2 of his friends lives have been ruined by VLTs. It is extremely sad, and for those of us who aren't currently battling the addiction, hard to relate. But at the same time, we must know the addiction has to be intensely strong if people are losing their homes, etc. To me it's one of those things like smoking - we know it's dangerous, it kills, but the government continues to profit from it. Even if the government banned VLTs, the casinos are still open and gamblers could go there. We've got to be stronger than the traps the government sets for us. Cigarettes, junk food, gambling, alcohol - we know this things are dangerous, they aren't going to be banned anytime soon, so we have to empower ourselves. If we don't buy these things or partake, the government won't make any profit and maybe then they will be banned.

Everything's related to money - isn't it sad?

On a lighter note, I think this Paul McCartney concert is going to be AWESOME! Big thanks to Will for the tip!!! I can't wait to see who's going to open for him.

Well, it's a beautiful, sunny, spring day, which is something quite rare for Halifax. Enjoy it, as there's a little rain on the way for tomorrow.

Take care,


Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Two faces

Here's a picture of the 2-faced baby Rick was talking about today.
Here's the link to the story:
Bruce Devenne had a pretty good line when Rick told the story and then said "Hi, Bruce!" Bruce came back with "Talk about a born politician". Ha!
Hey, I wanted to give you the link to George Murphy's blog - I didn't know he had one!
It's: I was shaking my head listening to George say home heating oil is going to be MORE expensive next year! That's unreal, and scary for those who have had tonnes of issues this year keeping their homes warm.
Rick was getting a little frustrated today because everyone kept calling him "Rickster". It's one of my favourite nicknames for him, but I didn't start it - that credit goes to Ben from PEI who starts every call with the obligatory "Whoo-hoo", then follows it up with "Ricksteeeeeeeerr". So, blame Ben.
Will called up and he wants credit for breaking the story about Paul McCartney! Trust me, Will, Rick says you told him, he's giving you tonnes of credit. Full credit can't be gleaned though, unless it comes true! Let's hope it does, that will be an incredible concert for Atlantic Canada - thanks for the scoop, Will!
So, promoting 250 years of democracy costs 9-million dollars a year. Hmmm. Maybe we should promote 100 years of paved roads and put some money into fixing our bloody potholes. Just a thought.
Anyway, thanks for tuning in! Talk to you tomorrow!

Monday, April 7, 2008

A fresh breath of democracy and Bob Eubanks

Caller Ray told us today that apparently the Democracy 250 movement is handing out breathmints. Rick tried to find the correlation today, but couldn't. Maybe it's the bad taste left in our mouths after this public relations exercise ends and we're still left with a goverment that thinks sitting for 16 days every year is cool.

It was pretty shocking to hear about caller Tina's experience with getting stitches for her dog over the weekend...paying 600 dollars for a few stitches!! Yikes! Even more shocking was that Rick spent close to 6-thousand dollars keeping his dog alive. See, he's actually a softie!

How about everyone's favourite magician: Jermaine "Houdini" Carvery? He somehow gets out of his leg irons, gets out of handcuffs and disappears? Okay, so one guard gave chase, what was the other one doing?? There are so many questions that can't be answered with the head of corrections' explanation of "I'm baffled". Really, well maybe you need a new job. This guy terrorized people all across the country and if he needs money, he'll do it again, I'm sure he still has a few connections around the country. Now, the Justice Department has referred all media inquiries to Halifax Regional Police. I'm going to hazard a guess that they're not down with that particular decision! Someone messed up, let's let someone else deal with the aftermath.

Our tax hour was actually interesting!! I think the majority of people agree that tax dollars should be based on the services provided, but I don't think anyone wants to see someone who owns a mansion pay as much as someone who owns a mini-home. Maybe there can be some sort of differential, a flat rate for a home over 500-thousand dollars or something? I don't know, just thinking aloud.

Between my news and my weather at noon, Rick strolls in and says "Bob Eubanks is going to be calling on the private line". In turn, I started screaming my head off, because I'm a huge fan of Bob Eubanks!!! I used to watch him all the time, because when I was little I wanted to be a game show host, LOL. He used to host this show that no one saw called "Infatuation". It was on overnights and I had insomnia for a while when I was a teenager and I used to watch it. Bob's awesome and I can't believe I'm going to miss his extravaganza at the casino tonight. If you go, call us tomorrow and tell us how it went!! Bob freakin' Eubanks. That was so cool.

Anyway, Charles Cirtwell will be in tomorrow to talk about the school rankings in Nova Scotia, so hope you tune in!

Enjoy this spring-like weather - FINALLY!



Saturday, April 5, 2008

Jim Connors' Obituary

CONNORS, James L., Q.C.CONNORS, James L., Q.C. - 52, Dartmouth.

Following a life of service and advocacy, Jim passed away at home with his immediate family with him on Thursday, April 3, 2008. He was the loving and attentive husband of Cathy (Cunningham) and the father of his treasured children, Paul, Lunenburg; Lauren, Dartmouth, and Patrick, Dartmouth. Born on December 8, 1955 in Dartmouth, he was the son of the late John Thomas Connors, Q.C. and Doris Elizabeth (Esson) Connors. He was the brother of Charlene Connors, Chilliwack; Nicole Connors and Camille Stokoe (Tim), Edmonton; Charles Connors (Melissa), Fort Saskatchewan. He is also loved and remembered by parents-in-law, Ron and Marg Cunningham, and sisters-in-law, JoAnn Cunningham (Gordon Page), Mary Barron, Carol Cunningham and Clare (Shawn) O'Brien, and nieces and nephews, Laura, Nigel, Kelsie, Andrew, Nicholas, Dennis, Sarah, Mitchell, Emma and Jack. A lifelong resident of Dartmouth, Jim was educated at Dartmouth High School, Memorial University of Newfoundland (BA '76), and the University of British Columbia, (LL.B '79). He was called to the Nova Scotia Bar in April 1980 and was named Queen's Counsel in 1997. His professional career was of one of leadership and integrity. He was, at the time of his passing, the Vice President, Regulatory Affairs, Emera and had been the Vice President, Legal and External Affairs, Sempra. Prior to moving to the energy business, he had been a respected and admired Partner with Boyne Clarke. He had also served as a special constable with the RCMP in the Yukon and British Columbia during law school. During his legal career, he appeared before the Supreme Court of Canada, Federal Court of Canada, Nova Scotia Court of Appeal, Supreme Court of Nova Scotia, Court Martial Appeal Board of Canada, National Energy Board, Nova Scotia Utility and Review Board, Nova Scotia Labour Board, along with other commissions and panels. His appearances before all such bodies were marked by thoroughness and well-prepared and thoughtful arguments. His successful appearance before the Supreme Court of Canada resulted in cameras being permitted in the Nova Scotia Legislature. His commitment to his fellow citizens is reflected in his extensive civic involvement to make our community a better place. Among these are: Alderman, City of Dartmouth 1985-91 (did not re offer); Commissioner, Dartmouth District School Board, 1985-1990, including a term as Chair. Other organizations with which he enjoyed a relationship include the Wee Care Child Care Centre, Chair of the Board; Dartmouth Whalers Minor Hockey Association, Registrar and Board member; Columbarium Business Plan Committee, Christ Church; Alderney Landing, Board member; Dartmouth North Community Centre, Honorary Trustee; Nova Scotia Progressive Conservative Party, President; Metro United Way, Vice President and Board Member; Dartmouth Senior Citizens Capital Campaign, Chair; Canadian Diabetes Association, Annual Campaign, Chair; the Christ Church Restoration Campaign, Chair; Habitat for Humanity - Halifax-Dartmouth as a founding Board Member; Dartmouth Heritage Museum, Board member, and Discovery Centre, Board Member. He provided his time and expertise to many other groups including court training for social workers, fundraising projects for other groups including Legal Aid and assisted REACH Nova Scotia's Volunteer Lawyer program for persons with disabilities. He spoke at conferences, events and at schools on topics ranging from employment law to drug testing. He continued to serve the law by regularly presenting in support of legal education from laws schools to high schools. More recently he was asked to serve on the national boards of the Colorectal Cancer Association of Canada, the Cancer Advocacy Coalition of Canada and the Canadian Cancer Society-Nova Scotia Division. His focus with these groups was on helping others. He had been widely recognized with numerous awards for his insight, expertise, and charitable work all combined with a brilliant intellect and a quick wit and sense of humour. He enjoyed a special relationship with St. Nicholas during the Christmas holidays at Christ Church services for children. Jim was a keen supporter of hockey, soccer, baseball games and the musical pursuits of his children. He will be remembered by many as perhaps the most successful ice cream seller at the Highland Games in Halifax and in Antigonish, which he did in support of the Dartmouth and District Pipe and Drum Band. Jim was an avid and voracious reader and enjoyed camping and travel with family and friends. He conducted himself always with passion, compassion, commitment and humour. This great husband, father, and friend will be missed, and his life is an example for us to follow. Visitation will be in Christ Church Parish Hall, 21 Dundas St., Dartmouth, on Sunday, April 6, from 2-5 p.m. Services will be in Christ Church, Ochterloney and Wentworth Streets, Dartmouth, at 2 p.m., Monday, April 7, Archdeacon Paul Smith will officiate. Arrangements have been entrusted to Dartmouth Funeral Home. Jim's ashes will be interred at the Christ Church Columbarium immediately following the service with a reception to follow in the parish hall. In lieu of flowers, donations in Jim's memory can be made to Christ Church, Wee Care Developmental Centre or Colorectal Cancer Association of Canada. On-line condolences should be sent to:

Friday, April 4, 2008

For Jim

What incredibly sad news to wake up to today.

Jim Connors died yesterday after a long battle with colorectal cancer.

I didn't know Jim well, I just knew him as well as I know anyone who regularly comes on the Hotline. We had a rapport, he was a really nice man who was dealt a hand I'm sure he probably wasn't expecting.

I feel like he might have had a few epiphanies later in life, buoyed by his fight against the government and he came out hard against them. I don't know what his political affiliations were, but I'm convinced he was shocked when the government didn't listen to him and approve Avastin.

He could afford the drug himself, but he continually fought for others to have it, in order to have their own lives extended. He deserves a lot of credit for that. Mike Savage pointed this out today - most people aren't activists when they are healthy, let alone when they are dying and that's what kind of strength Jim Connors had. We spoke to him a few weeks back and he had just finished taking 3 trips with each of his kids, in my heart I knew he was close to the end.

I admired Jim, I prayed for him and I know he fought as hard as he could. To Jim's family: we are so sorry for your loss.

We'll miss you, Jim.

Thank you for all your appearances on our show and let's hope the government honours your memory by doing the right thing.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

It's a little windy

Seriously. I was on the MacDonald bridge this morning and I was stopped in traffic and my car was blowing side to side because of the wind. It was nuts.

Another busy show today with lots of calls about this disturbing debit scam. One caller had an excellent suggestion, change your pin number! It sucks though, I really don't want to do that, but I guess it's better than being robbed! I checked my account this morning just to make sure no one was taking anything from me! We heard from two women today who were robbed, one of a thousand dollars, the other 500. It's a really sophistocated scam using Bluetooth technology, and I just hope police get these guys quickly!!!!

I have to agree with Rick today - Paul Watson crossed the line. He says the real tragedy is the baby seals dying and not the four sealers who died in the towing accident with the Coast Guard. What??? I'm not a huge supporter of the seal hunt, but these men weren't even sealing at the time, they thought they were in safe hands. They were being rescued!! It's a horrible tragedy, much, much worse than the seal hunt. I admired Paul Watson and his efforts to stop illegal shark and whale killings, but this was a little much. It's pretty shocking when I'm in agreement with Loyola Hearn on something.

So, the councillors were in during hour number 2 and man oh man, the poop is going down at city hall right now! I wish I could tell you what's up, but let's just say, jeez, I don't even know what to say. It's drama-licious, let's put it that way. Younger and Johns came out hard against the city staff, which I think is great! I mean, putting it on the taxpayer. Talk about phoning it in. Do you think the staffers hate the councillors and gave them an option that would make them unpopular with the voters?? I think that's what it's come to. I said it last week, this ferry thing is so much bigger than a fast boat. The drama is going to hit the fan on Tuesday. I think I'll follow suit with caller David, have a beer in my hand and I'll sit back and giggle. When you think about it though, it's actually not funny at all that these councillors are fighting so badly between each other and the staff. These people are controlling our tax money, God help us all.

Well, don't blow away today!



Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Dude, we're tapped out

You know what's a day ruiner? Nearly getting hit by a car as you're enjoying a walk to work on a spring morning. I drive too, I get impatient, but jeez, people need to slow down and just chill, especially when they see a pedestrian. Speeding to try and get past them on a side street is just so stupid, so thanks for nearly hitting me, lady in the silver Volkswagen!!!!

Luckily, the day started to look up when I got to work and was extremely busy fielding all sorts of calls today. We had a great call from a lady named Frances who was armed with tonnes of stats on the police service suggested we may have too many police officers in Halifax. It's an argument I've never heard, but it's interesting! Rick got an e-mail suggesting Frances does more research than most city councillors. Ha!

Very interesting at council last night. A tax hike! Yikes. You know it's a serious situation if they're looking at a tax hike in an election year. I kind of just want them to start from scratch. Gloria McCluskey has been calling for an audit of every department for years. It just seems like nothing's ever cut, we just have to always pay more. You know what would come in handy right now? The millions of dollars we let go to the Commonwealth Games Bid Committee. That would eliminate the snow removal debt and give us a little something else to play with. But, hindsight's 20/20 right?

So, the Mayor broke some news yesterday. He says Nova Scotia Power is applying for a 13.8% rate hike! Unbelievable!! Of course, Nova Scotia Power denies it. Well, the proof will be in the UARB application, which Margaret Murphy says they are in the process of filling out for "future hikes". I honestly don't know how people who make minimum wage get by, life is so incredibly expensive just getting the basics, let alone the luxuries. That's why Joan Alexander spent this winter in the cold, along with many others who couldn't afford to heat their homes this year. Yet, we're potentially looking at another increase. Again, streamline your operation, show us you're making cuts too and then ask the taxpayers to pitch in. I don't mind paying more if the service levels go up or there is a superior product to pay for (like Natural gas!), but the taxpayers' trough is dry! We're tapped out, seriously.

Well, enough tax talk. We'll get our fill tomorrow when Rick has a couple of councillors in during the second hour tomorrow.

Enjoy this beautiful day!


Tuesday, April 1, 2008

HRM - Problem Capital of Canada!

Seriously, does any other city have our many issues? Maybe my opinion is skewed as I hear complaint after complaint during the Hotline. You have no idea - you hear what gets on the air, you have no idea what people say to me off the air. It's a complaint bonanza, sometimes they just start firing and hang up and I haven't said a word!!! Others want me to pass stuff on to Rick and I try to pass on as much as I can that's topical, but honestly, I get at least 10 calls a day from people who don't want to go on, they just want me to pass on the comment. I've also been getting calls lately from a drunk guy, which is, ummm...interesting. I have to kind of filter it for Rick, so it's not information overload. You have to remember too, Rick and I have essentially 4 minutes to talk during the hour, so I've really got to prioritize what I tell him. Anyway, just a little sneak peek into my fascinating life as Hotline producer. Ha!

You might have heard Rick rant against one of our engineers today. Here is what started it all, an April Fool's prank from Will at Halifax Live.

Caller Don was talking to Rick about it and Kenny was sitting beside me doing something with the computer. I asked Kenny if he would vote for Rick and he was like, "Uh, no", so I started laughing and Rick asked me what I was laughing at. I told him Kenny wouldn't vote for him and then Rick said he was sending his storm troopers after Kenny, it was very funny as I think Rick may have convinced 6 people to vote for him today! Caller Dave was especially rough on the Rickster, calling him "Mike Duffy" in his treatment of Peter Kelly. Ouch! That stung, since Mike Duffy is not on Rick's list of favourite people, let's put it that way. He also kept referring to him as a lazy hippie.

So, will you go the Eagles concert? That's a great line-up they've put together, that's for sure. Tickets are over a hundred bucks, which is kind of expected. I'm not going. I'm not a huge fan of being in large groups of annoying people, baking in the sun all day drinking 8 dollar gross beer. What I will go see is Elton John if he comes to the Metro Centre. I love Elton John, I really hope the rumours are true (and we hear from excellent sources that they are).

Ernie brought up the issue of a pizza joint charging 1.25 if you get cash back. I'm so surprised places like Sobey's and the Superstore haven't started charging a fee. I'm surprised the banks haven't pressured them to as it's one of the last vestiges to get "free" money. I mean, it's free if you use your own bank machine, but if you're at the grocery store, you can get 20, 40 bucks out for free. It's almost too good to be true, which means it will probably soon come to an end.

Hey, if you want help quitting smoking, here are a couple of numbers for you. 1-877-513-5333 or 424-2025. Good luck!

Well, it's above 0 today, but I could do without the rain. Oh well, we'll survive, right?

Have a great day!