Don’t lead with this

Your drinking water may be dangerous, Trump turns his back on the environment, and you may want to think twice about returning library books late.

Don’t lead with this

Your drinking water may be dangerous, Trump turns his back on the environment, and you may want to think twice about returning library books late.

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✨  Good morning! Today is Tuesday, November 5, 2019, and 8chan 8kun really, really wants the internet to behave itself. (Pretty please. 🙏🏼)


• The Background

High and potentially dangerous levels of lead have been found in the drinking water of several Canadian cities. This is the conclusion of a year-long investigation reviewing undisclosed records from hundreds of homes in 11 different cities. Researchers found lead levels surpassed national safety directives, including in several daycares and schools. Some of the highest lead levels were found in Montreal, Regina and Prince Rupert, B.C. Prolonged ingestion of lead can lead to serious health concerns, especially for young children. Canadians across the country are living in houses with old pipes, drinking dangerous tap water that is laced with lead. The Guardian  

• What Else You Need to Know

The investigation was carried out by more than 120 journalists (and 10 media organizations) who found that out of 12,000 water tests since 2014, 33% exceeded the national safety guidelines of five parts per billion. When it comes to water safety in Canada, there is no federal oversight or routine testing, so provinces will need to independently act in order to combat the issue. Believe it or not, Canada is one of the only developed nations without a country-wide drinking water standard. The U.S. takes a totally different approach. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency sets certain standards, and every American receives a yearly Consumer Confidence Report from their water provider.

• What’s Next?

Thankfully, some provinces are already taking action. Montreal’s mayor, for example, promises to test 100,000 homes for lead and replace any lead-lined pipes as soon as possible. (Cheers to that.)


• Manic Monday

The body count continues to mount at anti-government protests across Iraq. Yesterday, five people were killed and more than 30 were wounded after Iraqi security forces opened fire on a crowd of protestors in Baghdad. This adds to the more than 250 civilians who have been killed in demonstrations since early October. Iraq had been a site of relative peace since putting down an insurgency from the Islamic State two years ago. But increasing poverty and limited access to basic necessities like clean water and healthcare have resulted in growing unease toward the region’s political system. CBC News


• Canada: Wexit Gets Real

Step aside, Brexit: Here comes Wexit. A mash-up of “western” and “exit,” Wexit is a separatist movement based in Alberta that started gaining traction after Justin Trudeau’s Liberals were re-elected. It turns out, the rallies and threats weren’t just for fun. The group behind the political movement has officially applied to become a registered party, filing paperwork with Elections Canada. Peter Downing, the leader of the group, says Wexit has three key goals: uniting the provinces of Western Canada, electing members of Parliament to legislate issues that directly impact the region, and bringing Western Canada to the national forefront. CTV News

• U.S.: Taxing Decisions

In another move that rolls back critical environmental protections, the Trump administration announced it will formally withdraw from the Paris climate accord. The landmark 195-nation agreement to reduce greenhouse gas emissions was struck in Paris in 2015. Although we know Trump is no friend of the environment’s, the move sends a powerful and troubling message. As the ramifications of global warming become more clear, the U.S. — which, by the way, has contributed to climate change more than any other country — will not help the rest of the international community solve it. In other Trump news, the federal appeals panel ruled that Trump’s accounting firm must hand over eight years of personal and corporate tax returns to Manhattan prosecutors. (Karma’s a b*tch, POTUS.) New York Times


“I want to encourage people who voted Green to get involved. Speak up for what you want to see in the next Green Party leader of Canada.”

– Elizabeth May, announcing her resignation as federal leader of Canada’s Green Party. Deputy leader Jo-Ann Roberts was appointed as May’s successor. Global News


• A Fresh Face

Facebook is giving itself a new face, announcing its revised brand and new logo to distinguish the company from the Facebook app, which will maintain its own branding. The new branding is more inclusive of the company’s expanded products and services, including Instagram and WhatsApp. The timing of the decision to rebrand is not random — Facebook continues to find itself at the centre of criticisms from politicians and consumer advocates who are calling on the government to break up the company into separate pieces. NBC News


• Give Them Some Credit

Adobe, Twitter, and the New York Times Company just announced the Content Authenticity Initiative (CAI). Adobe demonstrated a prototype of the tool yesterday, which will eventually be used to record who created an original photo or other piece of content. It will also record whether the content has been modified, and allow that data to be checked externally. (Guess they’re sick of all the “fake news,” too.) Many of the details are still fuzzy and there’s no release date as of yet, but expect a CAI summit in the next few months. The Verge


• Football: Farewell, Rick Campbell

The Ottawa Redblacks are saying adios to head coach Rick Campbell after five years together (though he isn’t officially done being the top-dog until the end of next season). Apparently, Campbell felt it was time to step down after the Redblacks came in last in the Canadian Football League. Although, it was under his leadership that the Redblacks took home the Grey Cup in 2016. (You win some, you lose some.) TSN


• Seeing Stars

It’s time to break out the bell bottoms — Ringo Starr just announced a 2020 tour. The former Beatles drummer is kicking it off with two back-to-back shows at Casino Rama in Rama, Ont., starting May 29. Starr released his 20th solo album, What’s My Name?, on Oct. 25. It includes song credits from the three other Beatles (yes, John and George included) as well as a long list of special guests. The 20-date tour will feature Starr and long-time backing band, the All-Starrs, as well as guest appearances from songwriting legend Edgar Winter and the Avett Brothers. Global News


• Book Burglar

They say that life is stranger than fiction, and honestly, we couldn’t make this stuff up. A woman in Michigan who forgot she had taken out two library books in 2017 got more than a slap on the wrist when she tried to return them. The mother of five now faces jail time (yes, you read that right) for the overdue books, which she says she didn’t even realize she had until she had her fiancé check their son’s bookshelf. She’s currently awaiting her next court date on Nov. 7, when she’ll learn whether or not she has to carry out the maximum penalty of 93 days in jail as well as a $500 fine. (Come on, it’s not like she tried to bribe her kids’ way into university.) ABC News


• Historic Debut

The Nat King Cole Show premiered on NBC 63 years ago today as the very first network television program hosted by an African American. 


• Police found 41 migrants in a refrigerated truck just outside the city of Xanthi, Greece. Although several had respiratory issues, all were alive.

• In a major close call, the FBI arrested an alleged white supremacist, after he was caught plotting to blow up one of Colorado’s oldest synagogues. 

• The Canadian Food Inspection Agency is recalling 33 vegetable products over possible Listeria contamination

• Photoshop is now available for iPads — a completely new app specifically designed for tablet editors.  

• Ellen DeGeneres is getting a much-deserved honour: The daytime TV host will receive the Carol Burnett Award at the Golden Globes


• More Play, Less Work

We just might have to try this.

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Feature image by isafmediaFlickr: 120528-N-TR360-003, CC BY 2.0, Link