Monthly Archives: June 2016

Reporter freed from Iran recounts how Muhammad Ali helped save him

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Reporter freed from Iran recounts how Ali helped save him

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Vancouver sports journalist Greg Douglas remembers Muhammad Ali

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Veteran Vancouver sports journalist Greg Douglas looks back at his memories of boxing great Muhammad Ali, who died at the age of 74.

“I had a hand in bringing him in for the fight at the Pacific Coliseum. Of course it sold out because he was the draw. I was promoting sports events in Vancouver, like bringing in the Seattle Supersonics and the Harlem Globetrotters. And when Pacific Coliseum general manager Mario Caravetta came to me and asked if I would help the promotion with Ali, I jumped at the opportunity because he was going to be an automatic hit.”

The three-time world heavyweight champion, who had battled Parkinson’s disease for 32 years, was admitted to hospital with a respiratory condition earlier in the week.

His family’s spokesman Bob Gunnell confirmed Ali’s death in Phoenix, Arizona, on Friday evening.

The funeral will take place in Ali’s home town of Louisville, Kentucky.

The spokesman said the Ali family “would like to thank everyone for their thoughts, prayers and support” and asked for privacy.

Ali, hailed as “The Greatest” after winning the heavyweight championship of the world three times, is survived by his fourth wife Lonnie – whom he married in 1986 – and multiple children, many of whom were reported to have flown to their father’s bedside on Thursday and Friday.

 

Agencies/Canadajournal

Press Gallry dinner 2016 , Trudea and Party Leaders 2016

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Party leaders let loose with barbs, profanity at Press Gallery dinner

‘It’s OK, the bad man’s gone away,’ interim Conservative Party Leader Rona Ambrose says of former PM

CBC News Posted: Jun 04, 2016 

Every year, the 350 or so journalists who cover Parliament get to break bread with the politicians they prod every day. The sometimes contentious relationship between politicians and the media gives way to camaraderie and trash-talk in the style of a celebrity roast.

The tone for the Parliamentary Press Gallery dinner on Saturday — honouring 150 years of the gallery — was set early, when Parliament Hill hero-turned-diplomat Kevin Vickers made an appearance at the podium as the hosts tried to corral all the guest into their seats.

“I hope everybody that’s standing realizes what happened to the last guy that pissed me off,” Vickers said, referring to his tackling of an Irish protester at a ceremony commemorating British war dead in Dublin last month.

The Prime Minister was more judicious with his choice of words.

For the first time in more than a decade, the Prime Minister speaks at the Press Gallery dinner. pic.twitter.com/m91MNQcWcD

“I won’t be swearing tonight because my mom is here,” he said to the crowd at the Canadian Museum of History in Gatineau, Que. “Now how about a round of applause for Kim Cattrall,” he said, referring to a mix-up on the American news program 60 Minutes, which, while referencing Margaret Trudeau in its recent profile of the PM, showed an old photo of his father with the Sex and the City actress.

Press Gallery Dinner 20160604

The prime minister’s wife, Sophie Gregoire Trudeau, joined the fun with a yoga pose. (Justin Tang/Canadian Press)

Trudeau got some help from his wife, Sophie Gregoire Trudeau, who stole the show with her song that was “all about me.”

The pair embraced, the PM grasping his wife’s rear — a pose they held long enough to make sure everyone noticed.

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Interim Conservative Party Leader Rona Ambrose let loose with a joke about her former boss, Stephen Harper. (CBC)

There were no elbows, but there were backhands.

“I’ve got more mistakes than [fomer defence minister] Jason Kenney has deleted tweets,” the PM said. “Like that time I said I admired China.”

Trudeau also commented on his “bromance” with the outgoing U.S. president.

“I’m a little sad that President Obama will be leaving public office soon,” he said. “I have to admit, I’ll miss his leadership and his good advice. I will not miss the wedgies.”

Press Gallery Dinner 20160604

A relaxed NDP leader Tom Mulcair concluded his speech with a mic drop. (Justin Tang/Canadian Press)

The opposition also had their turn.

Interim Conservative Leader Rona Ambrose brought a message from former prime minister Stephen Harper, who told her to “tell all of you to go to hell.”

“I really believe in my heart that the former prime minister was misunderstood,” Ambrose said. “Stephen Harper loved humanity, it was just people that he couldn’t stand.”

And she wasn’t done throwing shade on her ex-boss, floating some possible new party slogans:

“The Conservative Party of Canada — It’s OK, the bad man’s gone away,” and “The Conservative Party of Canada — 30 per cent fewer nuts.”

PPG dinner 2016

This year’s Parliamentary Press Gallery dinner was held at the Canadian Museum of History in Gatineau, Que., shown here in a photo tweeted by the prime minister’s senior aide, Gerald Butts. (Twitter/Gerald Butts)

But no one was more relaxed than NDP Leader Tom Mulcair, who has already said he would retire from politics as soon as his party chooses a new leader.

“Unlike every other person here tonight, I give zero f–ks” he said.

He called the NDP’s poor showing in the October election a “gigantic orange shitstorm” before dropping the mic with “Mulcair out.”

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