Although it is called “the silent killer,” there is nothing muted about the growing fear of hypertension in Western society. Largely due to their heightened consciousness, younger men and women have joined their parents and older acquaintances in confronting the precise measurement of their own mortality—in the form of blood pressure readings during medical examinations.
The article The dispute over homosexual ministers (Religion, May 28) was less than fair to the moderator, Rt. Rev. Clarke MacDonald. His decision not to take sides in the issue has a sound basis which was not covered in the article. The task force report will be the subject of an intense debate at the General Council meeting in August.
APPOINTED: George Connell, as president of the University of Toronto, Canada’s largest university institution, after a search committee had deliberated since October, 1983. The 53-year-old biochemist is currently president of the University of Western Ontario in London.
It had net assets of $1.1 billion (U.S.), but Manville Corp., the giant Denver-based construction, mining, and forest products company, which for decades was the Western world’s largest producer of asbestos, filed for bankruptcy court protection in New York in August, 1982.
Perhaps it was to be expected that, with a huge standing army and enough fire power to vaporize, once and for all, the assorted enemies of democracy, the United States would develop a passion for the splendors of military might. We adore war movies, of course, and, whenever the opportunity arises, march down Main Street with armaments slung over our shoulders.
As Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau walked across Parliament Hill last week, the usual crowd of backward-shuffling television crews preceded him, their cameras rolling. This time, however, the cameras focused on the beaming face of the man beside Trudeau: Prime Minister-designate John Turner.
The federal Tories last week moved to recover the political momentum they lost during the three-month Liberal leadership campaign. In Ottawa Norman Atkins, the chairman of the Conservative election campaign, insisted that the Conservatives have not seriously lost ground, even though recent public opinion polls, which reported the parties virtually tied in popular support, suggested otherwise.
After more than a decade of pressure from nonnative and native women’s groups, the federal government moved belatedly last week to end a historic injustice to Indian women. Indian Affairs Minister John Munro introduced legislation that would replace a section of the 110-year-old Indian Act under which Indian women lose their status—and the right to live and die on reserves—when they marry nonIndians.
In 1979 federal income tax officials asked Winnipeg’s James Richardson & Sons Ltd., then the country’s largest commodity brokerage firm, to help with a test aimed at determining whether traders in commodities futures markets were accurately reporting their earnings for tax purposes.
The men who work underground call rock bursts the “miner’s nightmare.” Without warning, when geological stress exceeds the strength of shaft walls, earth and support beams come tumbling down with brutal consequences. Last week a series of massive rock bursts in Falconbridge Ltd.’s No.5 nickel mine shaft at Falconbridge, Ont., killed at least two miners—one of whom was only one metre away from anxious co-workers who were digging him out.
There was a time when members of the Parti Québécois could shrug off byelection losses by pointing out that the PQ always won big when it counted—at general election time. But with the party languishing in its lowest-ever position in the polls, Pequistes found it difficult to put a brave face on last week’s defeat in three more byelections, a triple setback that stretched the party’s inglorious losing streak to 21 straight—every byelection the PQ has called since taking power in 1976.
He has yet to secure the Democratic party’s nomination for president and his rivals have not yet bowed out. But former vice-president Walter Mondale is already grappling with what may be the most crucial decision of his campaign for the presidency: the selection of a vice-presidential running mate.
The Cold War of hot words between East and West continued last week in the capitals of both superpowers. In Moscow, French President François Mitterrand bluntly told Soviet leader Konstantin Chernenko that it was the Kremlin’s buildup of SS-20 missiles in Europe rather than any Western desire to outmanoeuvre the Soviet Union that led to the deployment last December of U.S. cruise and Pershing II missiles.
The scene was Zone 12—a working-class neighborhood on the outskirts of Guatemala City. As moderate National United Front candidate Juan José Perdomo Castellanos took an evening stroll with a party aide last week, an assailant armed with a handgun approached and opened fire.
New Zealand Prime Minister Sir Robert Muldoon has survived in office for nine years on political shrewdness and pugnacity. But last week, as Muldoon began campaigning for the July 14 election, it was clear that he will need those attributes if he is to reverse a decline in his conservative National Party’s popularity.
It was the first serious military action since El Salvador’s new president, José Napoleon Duarte, took office June 1. In a sweep through five eastern provinces government troops last week launched a new campaign against left-wing rebels.
Actress Margot Kidder has long been passionately outspoken for nuclear disarmament. In 1980 she capitalized on her fame as reporter Lois Lane in Superman to campaign for antinuclear Democratic presidential hopeful John Anderson in the United States although, as a Canadian, she could not vote for him.
It is a tale with enough twists and characters to rival the most lurid paperback. Spanning 11 years, the tangled saga of Panagiotis Takis (Taki) Veliotis, a Greek-born millionaire businessman, involves the world’s largest contractor, St. Louis-based General Dynamics Corp.
As representatives of 11 Latin American debtor nations gathered at the Colombian resort city of Cartagena last week to discuss their enormous $315-billion (U.S.) debt burden, some Western governments and bankers were openly concerned about being left in the lurch.
In typically Canadian fashion the mountain of unpaid Third World debt threatening to topple the free world’s monetary system is being dismissed as a distant phenomenon being played out on foreign shores by swarthy men with unpronounceable names.
It is called “the silent killer.” At least one in 10 adult Canadians has high blood pressure or hypertension. It strikes senior citizens, hard-driving executives and young men and women. Most of the victims feel perfectly healthy until they are diagnosed and placed on drugs.
Until the 1920s a diagnosis of hypertension amounted to a death sentence. Doctors knew little about the condition, and no drugs existed to control it. Explained Dr. Marc Cantin, of the Clinical Research Institute of Montreal: “You could tell a patient to make out his last will and testament.”
For many people one of the most common elements of a routine physical examination—the blood pressure reading—is also the most mysterious. In fact, the life-saving procedure is relatively simple. In most cases, a doctor inflates a rubber cuff around a patient’s arm and records a reading such as “120/80.”
In the search for answers to the cause and the cure of the condition of hypertension, some 50 years ago North American researchers began to look for clues in other cultures. Their search led them to some startling and tantalizing discoveries.
To Japanese Canadians, Feb. 26, 1942, is a day of infamy. That is when the Canadian government authorized the internment of about 22,000 Canadians of Japanese descent, along with the confiscation of their property. Last week, more than 42 years later, Multiculturalism Minister David Collenette issued regrets in the House of Commons on behalf of the government and announced the establishment of a $5-million fund to combat racial prejudice.
For A. Roy Megarry, publisher of the Toronto-based Globe and Mail, the quality of corporate life has improved immensely over the past two years. In the spring of 1982, Megarry not only faced a fiercely competitive Toronto newspaper market — the only one in Canada with three English-language dailies — but turmoil in the newsroom as a result of recession-induced staff cutbacks.
The vessel looks like a cross between a giant crab and a helicopter without a rotor, but to oceanographers it is a thing of beauty. Deep Rover, the world’s latest and most advanced one-man submarine, had its launching at a pier in Dartmouth, N.S., last week before marine scientists from around the world.
Australian Dr. Linda Mohr entered the raging international debate about the legal and moral aspects of freezing human embryos for later use in child bearing last May with an appeal to leading test-tube-birth scientists at an international seminar in Helsinki: “I plead with society to take up the legal and ethical questions.
In a December, 1961, article for The New Yorker magazine, staff writer Alastair Reid described the scene in a Barcelona bar as local residents watched Generalissimo Francisco Franco deliver a televised speech. As quiet mutterings from the “regulars” gave way to outright anger, Reid quoted one of the locals growling at the image on the screen, “There is always room in prison, even for the fattest.”
The Canadian arts community has always congratulated itself on its arm’s-length relationship with its government patrons. But a bill before the House of Commons seriously threatens that rapport. The source of the agitation is Bill C-24, which Treasury Board President Herb Gray introduced in March to force Canada’s 336 Crown corporations and other government-funded enterprises to be more accountable for their spending.
Theatrical companies from Europe, Australia and North America joined in a triumphant Quebec International Theatre Fortnight to help the province celebrate its 450th anniversary. Scores of actors took to the stages of nine theatres in Quebec City to present a remarkable cross section of international drama—many in their own languages.
Reading is well down the list of North American pastimes, but a New Hampshire-based company is making an unusual bid to reverse that trend. In September, the Sunday Novel Corp. will begin giving away a novel each month in 1.6 million copies of Sunday newspapers across the United States, including The New York Times and the Dallas Times Herald.
Two years ago Montreal musician Trevor Payne made a special contribution to the 75th anniversary of the Union United Church, the black community of Montreal’s oldest house of worship. Payne, a former rock musician, assembled a 60-member gospel choir made up of parishioners of the working-class St. Henri church, former members of a youth choir and “the best voices I could talk into singing for us.”
Until the early 1970s standard television commercials ran for a full minute. Then, the rates that television networks charged for the 60-second spots became so high that manufacturers and advertising agencies lobbied the networks hard to have the time cut in half to reduce the cost.
It was time for the five members of the Canadian Brass to shed the image they had long cultivated as extrovert pranksters. And they have done so admirably with a delightful set of baroque arrangements which they perform in seamless consort with five virtuoso brass players from the Berlin Philharmonic.
Several recent films set in New York have tended to reinforce the image of the city that outsiders love to hate: a grim panorama of vandalized buildings and overcrowded tenements. Fortunately, there is another New York: colorful, brash and vitally human.
In his shameless attempt to capture the inflated physiques of Dolly Parton and Sylvester Stallone on screen, director Bob Clark has spawned a predictable—and largely tasteless—romantic comedy. With a lame script that has more stereotypes and flat jokes than a bachelor’s stag party, Rhinestone is built on bosoms, biceps and little else.
WIRED, THE SHORT LIFE AND FAST TIMES OF JOHN BELUSHI By Bob Woodward
Bob Woodward’s controversial biography of the late comedian John Belushi is so revealing about North American show business that it should be circulated in high schools as a cautionary tale for starstruck youth. Woodward’s exhaustive portrayal of the drug-sapped entertainment industry has the same effect on the reader as his previous work on Richard Nixon and politics: the business has seldom looked so sordid.
In the first three volumes of his American Chronicle—Burr, 1876 and Washington, D. C. — Gore Vidal peeped through keyholes into the back rooms of bygone power. He caught the rich and famous in compromising positions and, with the keen edge of his wit, slashed the pretensions of heroes including George Washington and Thomas Jefferson.
In its 89-year history the Venice Biennale has established itself as one of the world’s most prestigious exhibitions of contemporary art. In the past the critics, dealers, museum directors and collectors who attend the summer-long event (June 10 to Sept. 9) have praised the work of Canadian artists, including Alex Colville, Michael Snow and Paterson Ewen.
The tenor of the nation is set by the occupant of 24 Sussex Drive. Just as the Kennedys inspired a style of wit and elegance in Washington, the early days of Pierre Elliott Trendeau dictated an experimental, LIP-granted band of long-haired transients who thumped their way across the country in search of Nirvana (three kilometres on the highway outside Swift Current).