Stuff Happens, week 6: All about Eve; Sun sets on Sun News.

Liberal leader Justin Trudeau was all smiles on Monday when announcing that Ontario PC MP Eve Adams was crossing the floor to his party. But the news gave hims critics a new opportunity to question his judgement. Adams has more baggage than Samsonite; she has done so much underhanded and/or highhanded stuff, even the Conservatives told her she wasn’t wanted. But she comes with a bonus in the person of her fiance. Dimitri Soudas was also turfed from the Tories for going too far to secure his finance’s nomination, but before he came a cropper he was the Conservative party’s executive director. The Liberals say he will be used only to put up lawn signs. If they actually waste an asset like that, they deserve to lose.

The Maple Leaf flag, one of the most beloved icons (yes, I can use that word in this case) in our history, was raised for the first time 50 years ago today. This is just the kind of event the hyper-patriotic Stephen Harper government usually supports with multi-million dollar ad campaigns. But, just like the 30th anniversary of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms in 2012, it went entirely uncelebrated. Why? Could it be that the charter and the flag were both creations of Liberal governments? Yes, it could.

As the crisis in Ukraine worsens, the west seemed to be split on how to approach the problem. Europe, as explained by German chancellor Angela Merkel, prefers peace talks with Vladimir Putin. The U.S., naturally, is leaning towards arming Ukraine. Not sure how Europe wants to negotiate with Putin since he claims Russia has nothing to do with the attack on Ukraine. Putin, as always, is laughing all the way to the Balkans.

Gotta hand it to China. Here in the west, billionaires are lionized regardless of how scummy they are. But in China this week, one billionaire — described as a “evil gangster” — was executed for his crimes.

The city of Edmonton withdrew its bid for the 2020 Commonwealth Games on Wednesday, when Premier Jim Prentice told the city the province wouldn’t financially back the bid. Since nobody in the world cares about the Commonwealth Games — even people in the Commonwealth, if they even know they’re in the Commonwealth – this is no big loss. Combined with our scuttled bid for a World’s Fair, it still makes you wonder: doesn’t anybody want to be our friend?

The media and movie fans were slathering over the release of the film version of the steamy bestseller, Fifty Shades of Grey. But in France, the film classification board decided not to give the film an adult rating, instead allowing kids as young as 12 to see the film. The president of the classification board said it “isn’t a film that can shock a  lot of people,” even calling it “a romance, you could even say schmaltzy.” According to the French, the film is less “oo la la” and more “oo blah blah”. Reviewers in North American reflected the French opinion that this supposedly steamy film barely simmers.

Falling oil prices continue to wreak havoc with provincial economies. Also continuing: the rise of Edmonton gasoline prices, which jumped another 10 cents a litre this week. Why? Because they can.

RIP: Sun News Network, age 5, of extreme neglect. The cheap-o Canadian rip-off of Fox News failed miserably to connect with Canadians with its non-stop feigned outrage. I can’t celebrate journalists losing their jobs, but Sun News was a bad idea, executed badly, and deserved its demise …. Former Montreal Canadiens coach Claude Ruel, 76 … Bob Simon, 60 Minutes reporter and long-time correspondent for CBS News, was killed in a car crash. He was 73. Simon’s career at CBS goes back to the Vietnam War, and he covered pretty much every conflict since. One of the last of a breed of hard-nosed reporters that used to be quite common on TV news … Kenji Ekuan, 85, the designer who created the red-capped soy sauce bottle found in every Chinese restaurant everywhere … Gary Owens, 80, the announcer on the old Laugh-In show from the 1960s … Michele Ferrero, the richest man in Italy and 20th richest in the world, at 89. Ferrero’s brands include Nutella, Mon Cheri, Kinder Chocolate, Ferrero Rocher, Tic Tacs and Kinder Eggs.

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