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If I had to pick a winner in the Penticton Herald’s all-candidates forum, it would be Dan Ashton. An informal poll of other media people who watched the two-hour meeting unanimously agree.

Liberal leader Andrew Wilkinson apologized to NDP candidate Bowinn Ma. So did Liberal candidate Jane Thornthwaite, who had portrayed Ma in an uncomplimentary way.


Mom admitted to me not that long ago that “chop suey night” growing up in our house meant we had no food in the cupboards.

“And the sign said anyone caught trespassing will be shot on sight. So I jumped on the fence and I yelled at the man, what gives you the right to put up a fence to keep me out and to keep Mother Nature in?”


Whoever forms the next provincial government will have to deal with all the problems associated with the dam at Site C on the Peace River.


After all our rail trail cycling this year, it was appropriate that we should (probably) finish our 2020 camping season with one last exploration of the KVR Rail Trail in the Similkameen Valley.

Happy Thanksgiving. I have discovered that being thankful is a balm to bad moods and salve to stress, even in the face of the most challenging circumstances.

I started writing this column on Thursday morning, as I emerged from a haze of pain and pain medications. The day before, Wednesday, I had plastic surgery on my face to remove pre-cancerous basal cell lesions brought on by too much sun in my youth.

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As one elderly gentlemen outside our old, downtown Kelowna office searched for a way to light his crack pipe, two senior ladies were looking through one of our newspaper boxes just three metres away.

Who has suffered the most during the pandemic? It’s easy to see. Those in the service sector are often the lowest-paid workers in good times and the first to be laid off in bad: retail sales associates, restaurant servers and kitchen staff and others employed in small businesses.

It is the beginning of October, the leaves are turning and wiry squirrels are stockpiling. Thanksgiving is quickly approaching; I’m not sure how the celebrations will look; maybe a smaller turkey.

I’m sick of COVID-19 statistics. Every news report tells me how many million have died, how many thousands infected, how many hundreds in hospitals. So, of course, I’m going to throw you some more statistics.

With children returning to school over the past few weeks, I can appreciate this has been a more difficult time for families who are figuring out new schedules and uncertainties.

The travel lockdown we are experiencing due to COVID-19 has been devastating. With the current travel restrictions in force, British Columbia’s air service was down over 93% in April and May 2020.

In lore, it is written that the four horsemen are harbingers of the end — well, times have changed so I’ve decided to update these four fortune tellers. 

The last time I saw such a blatant case of plagiarism was when Melania Trump ripped off Michelle Obama in her address to delegates at the 2016 Republican national convention.


Singing has fallen victim to the Covid-19 pandemic. When health regulations prohibited large gatherings, and when physical distancing precluded even small groups from getting together, choirs everywhere had to shut down.


Others feel as if they have lost connection with personal faith as though the spiritual wifi has crashed; they feel as if they are drifting aimlessly through the mists of doubt and tides of repetitive questions.

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Phantom Creek Estates CEO Santiago Cilley takes a seat on the patio, glass of wine in hand, and a huge smile breaks across his face.

I believe COVID deniers are the way they are because they simply want the pandemic to be over. They wish it never happened. Everybody wants it to be over. It’s not a Hortons-vs-Starbucks debate. We all agree.

Parliament is finally resuming on Wednesday with the Speech from the Throne, where the government will unveil its priorities and vision for the upcoming session. After debating, MPs will vote on the speech, which is considered a confidence vote — meaning parliamentarians will have to deliber…

There is the smart thing to do, and then there is the stupid way. If this was a test in school; and you were asked to pick one of the two. Would you pick smart or stupid?

We have all heard of Kiefer Sutherland, the star of Designated Survivor, and the counter-terrorist hero Jack Bauer who fights his way through each episode of 24, saving the world.

In the news this week, a pharmacist who worked in both Kelowna and Summerland was disciplined by the College of Pharmacists of B.C. for dispensing narcotics and other drugs without a prescription for a second time. His punishment for his second offence: a four-week suspension and $1,000 fine.

Schools are re-opening. Restaurants, bars, and offices are re-opening. People look forward to life returning to normal.

Sorry, Nikki Haley, former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, but you are wrong in stating American society is not racist. The early American colonies were founded on intentional racism and many of the same systemic, racist attitudes continue today.

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The federal government can have a positive or negative effect on the national economy using two primary tools — fiscal or monetary policy. On rare occasions it can also use foreign exchange regulations as well.

Throughout this pandemic, many of us have spent too much time binge-watching Netflix. That is a “confession” that is often brought to me in my day-to-day life.

According to coverage in The Atlantic, a reputable news agency, the U.S. president referred to the war dead as “losers” and “suckers” and wasn’t sure of “who the good guys” were in the First World War.

In my November 2018 report, I focused on revelations that Statistics Canada was “demanding access to certain Canadians personal financial and banking information, including all transactions along with bank account balances without citizens’ consent or even notification that this is going on.”

We are now entering month 7 since the COVID-19 pandemic was declared in Canada, and with many of the government’s pandemic recovery programs coming close to their end, I’ve been finding more people, businesses and industry associations reaching out again to our office with their concerns. Th…

You’ve heard of the last Mohican? Well my friends out there in newspaper-land, I’m the last Bates of my clan. You might say, I’m one of a kind.

During the last 10 days I have watched — reluctantly, I admit — parts of the Democratic and Republican national conventions in the U.S.