Wednesday, January 23, 2013


From the big scrapbook of time, here’s a look at Canada in 1991-
The Chevrolet Cavalier is the best selling car this year.

 January 1: Finance Minister Michael Wilson has shepherded the unpopular Goods and Services Tax all the way from a Green Paper to Royal Assent. The new tax takes effect today, though it will be pegged at seven percent, not the nine percent the Tories wanted. The GST will be added to everything we buy from Aspirin to zodiac charts. It will cause auto sales to drop by four percent and truck sales to tumble nine percent by year’s end.

January – Servers will take your order at Tim Horton's 500th store. The newest one is in Aylmer, Quebec.
The HMCS Athabaskan was built in Lauzon, Quebec and commissioned on September 30th, 1972.
 January 15: Parliament has condemned Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait and Prime Minister Mulroney has already sent a field hospital as well as the HMCS Athabaskan and the HMCS Terra Nova to the combat zone. Now, Canadian Forces are deployed in the Persian Gulf War. 

Senators are appointed to the Red Chamber by the Prime Minister.
 January 29: Findings from a Royal Commission on the British North America Act are released. The Allaire Report recommends many broad changes to our constitution, including abolition of the Senate.
January 30: A CF-18 Hornet attacks an Iraqi war ship causing major damage.

February 7: Jean-Paul Mousseau is dead at the age of 64. As a prominent member of the Automatist School of Art, Jean-Paul believed that in order for art to be appreciated, it needed to be integrated into urban society. Many of his works—seen in Metro stations--are breathtaking non-representational works, created in collaboration with the architects who designed Montreal’s subway system.

The motto of the HMCS Huron is 'Ready the Brave.' Commissioned in 1972, the destroyer will sail for the last time in 2003.
 February 27: The Gulf War is over; the Iraqi government has agreed to the terms of a cease-fire. The HMCS Huron is on its way to the war zone and will be the first ship to enter Kuwait City Harbour after the cessation of hostilities. 

Paul Shaffer is leader of the World's Most Dangerous Band, on TV's Late Night with David Letterman. Paul was born in Thunder Bay, Ontario.
March 3: Paul Shaffer hosts the Juno Awards, held at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre in Vancouver. It is the first time the music award ceremony has been held outside of Toronto.  Celine Dion takes home a Best Female Vocalist Juno and Best Album Juno for Unison. Colin James earns a Best Male Vocalist Juno and Single of the Year Juno for his hit, Just Came Back.
March 20: The federal Ministry of Consumer and Corporate Affairs reports that personal and business bankruptcies have risen 68 percent from this time last year—the highest level ever.

The Supreme Court Justices pose in their traditional robes.

March 21: Justices of the Supreme Court of Canada rule unanimously that a foetus is not a legal person and has no guarantee to life under the current criminal code.

With shortwave transmitters in Sackville, New Brunswick, the Voice of Canada took to the air on Christmas Day, 1944.
 March 28: Prime Minister Clark announces that the Ministry of External Affairs will operate Radio Canada International since the CBC has slashed its operations budget by 50 percent. 

 April 2: Rita Johnston is sworn in as the 29th Premier of British Columbia, the first woman to hold the position. She replaces Bill Vander Zalm who resigned after being accused of conflict of interest.

Honda Civic is the second best-selling car this year.
 April 11: Ottawa announces it will compensate the families affected by the 1985 Air India disaster. However well intentioned, the $15 million will not bring back the 329 souls who perished in the mid-air bombing.
May 1: The price of No. 1 spring wheat  drops  18 percent from $165 to $135 a tonne.

Brunswick Mining & Smelting
 May 8: The ten-month strike at Brunswick Mining and Smelting in Bathurst, New Brunswick is over. The 1,400 members of the United Steelworkers of America will return to the zinc and lead mines having earned better health and safety assurances from parent company Noranda. It is estimated that $40 million was lost in earning power during the work stoppage. 

The engine factory in Windsor, Ontario.
 May 14: Stockholders learn that Ford of Canada has spent nearly $1 billion to upgrade plants in Windsor, St. Thomas and Oakville with state-of-the art manufacturing technology.
May 22: The United Nations Development Programme Report ranks Canada as the second most desirable country in the world in which to live—only Japan ranks higher.

Mario Lemieux hoists the Stanley Cup.
 May 25: The Pittsburgh Penguins skate to victory over the Minnesota North Stars for the Stanley Cup. The win is especially sweet as this is the Penguins’ first time at the playoffs. 

June 4: The last five Simpsons department stores are absorbed into the Hudson's Bay Company. Simpsons began in Toronto in 1872. 

A kissin' cousin of the Chevrolet Cavalier, the Pontiac Sunbird takes the Number Four spot in sales this year.

June 8: Jack Pierce dies at the age of 67 during a cattle roundup at his Turner Valley ranch. The Alberta native founded Ranger Oil in 1956.

June 12: Cree lawyer Ovide Mercredi beats Phil Fontaine on the fourth ballot of the convention in Winnipeg. He will replace George Erasmus as the national chief of the Assembly of First Nations, representing Canada's 500,000 status Indians.
Karla, a movie based on the Barnardo-Humulka murders, will be released in 2006.
 June 15: Serial killer Paul Bernardo lures14-year old Leslie Mahaffy to his car with the offer of a cigarette. The teen is returning home from the funeral home viewing of a classmate killed in a car accident. Bernardo and his wife, Karla Homolka, will torture and kill the Grade Nine student, capturing all the horror on video cam. 

The British North American Act was signed on July 1st 1867, creating the Dominion of Canada.

June 19:  The Dobbie-Castonguay Commission, appointed by Prime Minister Joe Clark, begins hearings to determine what changes are necessary to update the BNA Act. 

June 19: The government makes good on its plan to sell off part of Petro-Canada, the nation's only domestically-owned, fully-integrated oil producer and gasoline retailer.. The initial public issue of the Crown Corporation of 39.5 million shares hit the market at $13 a share and nearly all sell in one day.

June 29: A cement block with human body parts in it is discovered in Lake Gibson near St. Catherines, Ontario. Dental records will confirm that the remains are those of Leslie Mahaffy. She is another victim of the husband and wife serial killers Paul Bernardo and Karla Humulka.

July 8: Gordon Stewart Anderson is dead of AIDS at the age of 32. The author will be remembered for his riveting novel, The Toronto You are Leaving.

July 9: Some 400 residents in and around St. Lazare, Manitoba are evacuated after a CN train derails about 100 metres past the town's level crossing at 4.45 pm. Two tank cars carrying highly corrosive acetic anhydride and another two loaded with methanol rupture. They create a toxic cloud that hangs over the town, killing lawns and gardens. It will take six days before the mess is cleaned up and folks can return home. 

July 16: Statistics Canada reports that the rate of inflation is 1.1 percent—the lowest since 1962.
Canada Post will give Ferguson Jenkins its stamp of approval  in 2011.
 July 21: Ferguson Arthur Jenkins is the first Canadian to be immortalized in the Baseball Hall of Fame located in Cooperstown New York. Born in Chatham, Ontario, the three-time All-Star pitcher won 284 games during twelve seasons and received the Cy Young award in 1971 as the National League’s best pitcher. 

August 9: The mercury reaches 34C, making it the hottest day in Edmonton in the past two decades.

Quebec's fleur-de-lys flies on Parliament Hill.
 September 24:  The Dobbie-Castonguay Royal Commission recommends that Senators be elected and that Quebec be recognized as a distinct society within Canada.

November 24: Rock legend Burton Cummings sings the national anthem at the Winnipeg Stadium before the Toronto Argonauts and the Calgary Stampeders square off for the 79th fall football classic. It is Winnipeg’s first time to host the Grey Cup and it is one of the coldest games on records as the mercury dips to -27C. The Argonauts go home with the Grey Cup; the final score is 36 to 21.

December 30: Ford of Canada declares a loss of $85 million--a stark contrast to the $10.1 million profit made last year.

Production is moved from Canada to Mexico and the USA but Ford's Escort is still the 10th best-selling car this year.

December 31: the top ten selling cars in Canada are the Chevrolet Cavalier, the Honda Civic, the Honda Accord, the Pontiac Sunbird, the Ford Tempo, the Toyota Tercel, the Mercury Topaz, the Toyota Corolla, the Ford Taurus and the Ford Escort.

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