Good evening, let’s start with today’s top stories:
Encana’s name change smacks of desperation
The fallout over the announced move by Encana Corp. from its longtime Calgary headquarters to the United States has produced countless question, one of which is: What does “Ovintiv” mean?
Ovintiv is the name the company has decided to call itself (perhaps because now “energy + Canada” no longer makes much sense). As Ian McGugan writes, the planned name change puts Encana on trend; Over the past couple of decades, a steady stream of other high-profile companies such as BlackBerry (Research In Motion), Bausch Health Companies (Valeant) and TC Energy (TransCanada) morphed, but the reasons vary. Sometimes they’re obvious attempts to distance management from memories of falling share prices and in others to seemingly paper over unpleasant associations.
In Encana’s case, argues McGugan, it’s unclear why a name change has to be part of its move. “It seems to be an admission that management doesn’t have many other dials to turn. Since it is having trouble transforming the fundamental nature of its business, it is now turning to cosmetic changes instead.”
Ignore Jason Kenney: Encana’s move to the U.S. isn’t Trudeau’s fault, writes Gary Mason. “Once upon a time, politicians didn’t make those kinds of reckless and irresponsible allegations without repercussions. But there won’t be any. Mr. Kenney knows he can make statements like this, and if anything, his reputation and stature in his province only grow.”
- Encana: a timeline of the company with its roots in the creation of Canada
- Opinion: Encana’s move to U.S. delivers a gut punch to Alberta
- Loss of Encana means Ottawa should step up to ease Alberta’s anxiety
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Thirty years later, a different sort of wall divides Germany
When the Berlin Wall fell on Nov. 9, 1989, it was like a pressure valve that released the ambitions that had been trapped in a walled-up totalitarian state. Today, after spending $3-trillion on reunification, the economic divide between East and West Germany has been reduced somewhat, but a political and psychological border remains in place, uglier than ever.
“Thirty years [after the Wall fell], what stands out is not just how vividly people remember that first breaching of Germany’s ‘internal border,’ but the extraordinary extent to which that former border – not just the ring that encircled West Berlin, but the far longer barricade meant to keep 17 million people from fleeing – still shapes the psychological, economic and especially the political lives of the people who remain on the eastern side,” writes Doug Saunders in Rostock, Germany.
Courts order recounts in B.C., Quebec ridings after narrow federal election results
Three judicial recounts are taking place next week in ridings in Quebec and British Columbia where runners-up in last month’s federal election are hoping a review will change the outcome. The recounts will take place over three days next week. First will be Monday in Montreal over the results in the city’s riding of Hochelaga, where Liberal Soraya Martinez Ferrada beat Bloc candidate Simon Marchand by 328 votes. On Tuesday, it will be the riding of Quebec where Liberal cabinet minister Jean-Yves Duclos won re-election by 325 votes over Bloc candidate Christiane Gagnon. And on Wednesday in the B.C. riding of Port Moody-Coquitlam, where NDP hopeful Bonita Zarrillo lost to Conservative Nelly Shin by just 153 votes.
Nigel Farage says his party will contest every seat unless Johnson drops Brexit deal
Nigel Farage, the leader of the Brexit Party, launched his United kingdom election campaign today by telling Conservative leader and prime minister Boris Johnson his party will contest every seat in the U.K. unless Johnson drops his negotiated divorce deal with the European Union and agrees an election pact. Farage has always been a hardline advocate of Brexit and opposes concessions reached last month with the EU. His threat could hamper the Conservative because even though Johnson is ahead of Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn in opinion polls, the same polls suggest that more than 10 per cent of voters back the Brexit Party. That’s enough to split the pro-Brexit vote in some seats and hand victory to Labour.
Johnson and his Conservatives swiftly rejected the proposal. “What we’ve got is a fantastic deal that nobody thought we could get,” johnson told ITV television. “We can put that deal through.”
Turkish, Russian troops hold first joint ground patrols in northeast Syria
Turkish armoured vehicles on Friday drove across the border to join their Russian counterparts, according to Reuters television footage filmed from the Turkish side of the border. Around four hours later, they returned to Turkey. It was the first time the two sides held joint ground patrols in northeast Syria under a deal that forced Kurdish militia away from the territory.
ALSO ON OUR RADAR
Teachers hold strike vote: Public elementary teachers in Ontario have voted 98 per cent in favour of a strike, with their union, the Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario, calling the result an overwhelming mandate for job action. Talks with the province at the central bargaining table have not progressed, ETFO said, though the union has established no timeline for any potential strike.
One million affected by flooding in East Africa: Higher-than-normal rainfall has created flooding conditions in parts of Somalia, South Sudan and Kenya while aid groups warn a tropical storm on the way could worsen an already desperate situation. The floods there are the heaviest in six years in terms of the depth and the extent of the area affected.
Wind, rain cause havoc in Quebec: Quebec’s hydro utility says more than 900,000 of its customers are without power following a weather system that brought heavy rain, strong winds and snow across the province. Strong winds today topped 100 kilometres an hour, knocking out power to more than 340,000 customers from the Montreal area down to the U.S. border.
China warns on Hong Kong: China say it will not tolerate challenges to its “one country, two systems” formula that governs Hong Kong, including separatism or threats to national security there, a senior Chinese official said today after a meeting of the top leadership. The party vowed to ensure Hong Kong’s stability, following a closed-door, four-day meeting of the ruling Communist Party’s senior leaders in Beijing. Meanwhile, Hong Kong activist Joshua Wong has urged protestors to turnout for a huge weekend rally.
British backpacker drowned, autopsy finds: Amelia Bambridge drowned, according to Kuoch Chamroeun, the governor of Preah Sihanouk province, Cambodia where the 21-year-old woman disappeared Oct. 23 after attending a beach party. Her body was discovered by fishermen about 100 kilometres to the northwest of Koh Rong island.
U.S. stocks rallied to close out the trading week on Friday as the S&P 500 set a closing record for the third time in five days after an upbeat U.S. jobs report and data on Chinese manufacturing eased concerns about slowing global growth. The TSX also put in a strong performance, rising by triple digits.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 300.86 points, or 1.11%, to 27,347.09, the S&P 500 gained 29.36 points, or 0.97%, to 3,066.92 and the Nasdaq Composite added 94.04 points, or 1.13%, to 8,386.40.
For the week, the Dow rose 1.44%, the S&P 500 climbed 1.47% and the Nasdaq rose 1.74%.
The TSX rose 110.91 points, or .67%, to close at 16,594.07
Montreal postponed Halloween. My son and I still went trick-or-treating
“Thursday night in Montreal, we had an illicit Halloween. Children and their parents stalked the rain-soaked streets, dragging soggy capes, trading trespassers’ glances. Our block was uncharacteristically dark.” – Sean Michaels is the author of Us Conductors, which won the Scotiabank Giller Prize. His new novel is The Wagers.
The new literacy in an AI world
“More than five decades ago, Marshall McLuhan argued that media are ecosystems, extensions of human consciousness. The famous adage that the medium is the message also means, as the often-misquoted title of McLuhan’s famous book notes, that the medium is the mass age. We are all immersed in media and technology.” – Mark Kingwell is a professor of philosophy at the University of Toronto.
Alberta must not return to the harrowing, divisive times of 1980
“Albertans, Westerners, indeed all Canadians will be tested severely in the months ahead, whether through the polarized politics of pipeline construction, or the shadow-boxing of an equalization referendum, or some other crisis that is still to appear on the political horizon. The common life is at risk, and not just in the gap between Ottawa and Calgary. Within Alberta, we will be reminded regularly how divided we actually are.” – Roger Epp is professor of political science at the University of Alberta.
What’s new in films this week, from the robotic and repetitive Terminator: Dark Fate to the murky mess of Motherless Brooklyn
Our weekly collection of movie reviews for subscribers includes Globe reviews for the four-star The Body Remembers When the World Broke Open, three and a half star Synonyms and two-and-a-half star Terminator: Dark Fate, starring Arnold Schwarzenegger. Who is back. Like he said he would be. Again. For the ... what ... fifth time?
Taking a vacation? Think twice about relying on your credit card’s travel medical insurance
Travel medical coverage is a must at any age because being treated in a hospital while travelling outside Canada can cost you thousands or even hundreds-of-thousands of dollars. However, as Rob Carrick explains in his personal finance column, cards that offer medical coverage review your medical condition after a claim rather than assess you before receiving coverage as a normal insurer does. Your claim can be denied based on what the insurer finds out in looking at your medical history.
LONG READ FOR A LONG COMMUTE
Host Esi Edugyan makes her selection for the Book Club’s next title
The Globe and Mail Book Club is back with two-time Giller Prize-winner Esi Edugyan as host. She’s chosen a “deliciously creepy, heartbreaking and beautiful” novel for Globe subscribers to read and discuss over the next month. The Book Club will culminate in a live event in Vancouver on Nov. 28. The authors will appear onstage at Vancouver’s Performance Works on Granville Island for a subscriber-exclusive event being held in partnership with the Vancouver Writers Festival.Edugyan, based outside Victoria, is only the third person to win the Giller Prize twice; she won it in 2011 for Half-Blood Blues, which was also shortlisted for the Booker, the Writers’ Trust and the Governor-General’s Literary Award for Fiction. Her 2018 win for Washington Black marks the first time anyone has received the Giller for back-to-back books.