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COMMONS

Author: CANADALAND

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A politics show for people who hate politics.
101 Episodes
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Here's where you can support us: commonspodcast.com Tracy Rowley lost her surrogate mother to COVID-19 in a long-term care facility. But she’s determined that Shirley Egerdeen doesn’t become just another statistic. Tracy’s suing the company that runs the home. But one of the strangest things in this story is exactly who owns them. COMMONS: Pandemic is currently focusing on how COVID-19 is affecting long-term care in Canada. Featured in this episode: Tracy Rowley, Sherina Harris (HuffPost Canada), Emma Paling (HuffPost Canada), Zaid Noorsumar  To learn more: “COVID-19 Has Killed 164 At Revera's Care Homes. Their Families Want Answers” by Emma Paling and Sherina Harris in HuffPost Canada “Is it Time to Care Yet?” by Zaid Noorsumar in Rank and File “It is time to forget the profits and fix long-term care” by Geoffrey Stevens in The Waterloo Region Record This episode is sponsored by Freshbooks and The Jerry Cans Additional music from Audio Network
Over 1700 Ontarians have already been killed by COVID-19. And the vast majority of them died in long-term care. But if you live in a private, for-profit home, you’re much more likely to die from this virus. The for-profit long-term care industry is politically powerful and deeply entrenched. Is this their moment of reckoning? COMMONS: Pandemic is currently focusing on how COVID-19 is affecting long-term care in Canada. Featured in this episode: Sharleen Stewart (SEIU Healthcare), Natalie Mehra (Ontario Health Coalition) To learn more: “Party of Profits: Ontario Tories and the profit motive in long-term care” by Zaid Noorsumar in Rank and File “For-profit nursing homes have four times as many COVID-19 deaths as city-run homes, Star analysis finds” by Marco Chown Oved, Brendan Kennedy, Kenyon Wallace, Ed Tubb and Andrew Bailey in The Toronto Star “40 Ontario nursing homes with the highest rates of reported abuse” by Valérie Ouellet, Dexter Brown in CBC Marketplace This episode is sponsored by WealthBar This show was brought to you by our patrons. Please consider becoming a monthly supporter.  Additional music: I dunno by grapes (c) copyright 2008 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (3.0) license. Ft: J Lang, Morusque “Clean Soul” by Kevin Macleod, adapted. 
The McKenzie Towne Continuing Care Centre has experienced the deadliest COVID-19 outbreak in Alberta. But some people say that their loved ones were killed by neglect at McKenzie Towne long before the pandemic even began. COMMONS: Pandemic is currently focusing on how COVID-19 is affecting long-term care in Canada. Featured in this episode: Breanne Sinclair, Shauna Parks To learn more: “'I'm numb': families beg for help as care home outbreak spreads” by Timm Bruch in CTV News Calgary “Grieving granddaughter exposes history of McKenzie Towne continuing care home by Jill Croteau in Global News “Nurses allege lack of cleaning and isolation contributed to deadly COVID-19 outbreak at Calgary care home” by Jennifer Lee in CBC News This episode is sponsored by Freshbooks This show was brought to you by our patrons. Please consider becoming a monthly supporter.    Additional music: “Unanswered Questions” and “Clean Soul” by Kevin Macleod and “I Am a Man Who Will Fight for Your Honor” by Chris Zabriskie, adapted. 
Why did Commons drop everything and focus in on long-term care? Because the vast majority of deaths are happening in those homes. Because we should have known that was going to be the case, but we let it happen anyways. And because the level of suffering, isolation and trauma happening in long-term care today is almost too much for us to face up to. Featured in this episode: Nathan Stall, Jane Meadus This show was brought to you by our patrons. Please consider becoming a monthly supporter.  Additional music: “November”, “modum”, “Sunset”, and “Seeker” by Kai Engel, adapted. 
They were found abandoned in the facility. The conditions were described as “akin to a concentration camp.” Within two weeks, over thirty of them would be dead. The story of the Résidence Herron in Dorval, Quebec is a national shame — and a preview of the carnage still to come. COMMONS: Pandemic is currently focusing on how COVID-19 is affecting long-term care in Canada. Featured in this episode: Aaron Derfel (Montreal Gazette) To learn more: Public health, police find bodies, feces at Dorval seniors’ residence: sources in the Montreal Gazette by Aaron Derfel Records reveal chaos in the days before staff abandoned the Herron in the Montreal Gazette by Aaron Derfel Alleged neglect of seniors at residence in Dorval in CityNews Montreal by Alyssia Rubertucci   This show was brought to you by our patrons. Please consider becoming a monthly supporter.  This episode is sponsored by Wealthbar Additional music: “Clean Soul” by Kevin Macleod and “Seeker” by Kai Engel, adapted. “SUNBIRDS” by BOCrew (c) copyright 2012 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (3.0) license. Ft: THEDEEPR / THECORNER / feat : FORENSIC /
COVID-19 has upended everything, and forced us to change plans. From here on out, COMMONS will be bringing you stories about the people and institutions most impacted by the pandemic. And first up is long-term care. If you or someone you know have any stories about Canada’s long-term care system, get in touch with us at arshy@canadalandshow.com.
It began as a mysterious disease from a far off place. It turned into the deadliest plague humanity has faced since the Black Death. AIDS has ravaged and reshaped us in so many ways. But in Canada, the battle against AIDS wasn’t just a fight against a virus. It was a fight against a system that didn’t care if some people lived or died. Featured in this episode: Gary Kinsman, Darien Taylor, John Kozachenko To learn more: Queer Progress: From Homophobia to Homonationalism by Tim McCaskell AIDS Activist: Michael Lynch and the Politics of Community by Ann Silversides Never Going Back: A History of Queer Activism in Canada by Tom Warner This show was brought to you by our patrons. Please consider becoming a monthly supporter.  This episode is sponsored by Wealthbar, Freshbooks & Images Festival
There have been books and songs and plays written about Anna Mae Aquash. But she was no folk hero — she was flesh and blood. A young Mi'kmaq woman who took up arms against the United States government, Anna Mae was a revolutionary. But when she was found murdered in the South Dakotan countryside, it tore her movement apart. It took thirty years to find out who pulled the trigger. But that’s not the same thing as knowing who’s responsible for her murder.  Featured in this episode: Kevin McKiernan, Steve Hendricks To learn more: From Wounded Knee to Standing Rock: A Reporter's Journey by Kevin McKiernan The Unquiet Grave: The FBI and the Struggle for the Soul of Indian Country by Steve Hendricks The Spirit of Annie Mae by Catherine Anne Martin   This show was brought to you by our patrons. Please consider becoming a monthly supporter.  This episode is sponsored by Wealthbar, Freshbooks & Images Festival Additional music: “Unanswered Questions” and “Clean Soul” by Kevin Macleod, “I Am A Man Who Will Fight For Your Honor” by Chris Zabriskie, and “The Wrong Way” by Jahzzar adapted. “I dunno” by grapes (c) copyright 2008 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (3.0) license. Ft: J Lang, Morusque
It’s one of the most audacious plots in North American history. Turn a Caribbean island nation into a criminal state — then use the money to fund Neo-Nazis and Klansmen across Canada, the US and Europe. The scariest part? They almost pulled it off.  Featured in this episode: Stewart Bell (Global News) To learn more: Bayou of Pigs: The True Story of an Audacious Plot to Turn a Tropical Island into a Criminal Paradise by Stewart Bell Cups Up: How I Organized a Klavern, Plotted a Coup, Survived Prison, Graduated College, Fought Polluters, and Started a Business by George Malvaney   This show was brought to you by our patrons. Please consider becoming a monthly supporter.    This episode is sponsored by Wealthbar and Audible.    Additional music: “Spheres” (Hip Hop Instrumental) by Robbero (c) copyright 2013 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (3.0) license.
Our new season is about the people on the extremes. The activists, the terrorists, and the revolutionaries who took things right to the edge for what they believe in... for good or for ill.
A new investigative series about the cocaine smuggling ring inside Vice Media. To hear episode 2 right now, subscribe to Cool Mules. Or get all six episodes ad-free for $5/month by clicking here.
The Harts are Canada’s first family of professional wrestling and one of the most famous dynasties the country has ever produced. And sure, wrestling is scripted.  But what happens when reality begins to invade that fiction? The story of the Harts is one of triumph and tragedy that transcends the world of pro wrestling.  Featured in this episode: Damian Abraham, Omar Mouallem To learn more: Wrestling With Shadows by Paul Jay The Squared Circle: Life, Death, and Professional Wrestling by David Shoemaker “The Rise and Fall of Wrestling’s Weed-Dealing, Cat-Breeding Phenom” in Rolling Stone by Omar Mouallem   This show was brought to you by our patrons. Please consider becoming a monthly supporter.  This episode is sponsored by Wealthbar and Audible.  Additional music: “Unanswered Questions” by Kevin Macleod and “Cylinder Five” by Chris Zabriskie, adapted.   “I dunno” by grapes (c) copyright 2008 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (3.0) license. Ft: J Lang, Morusque   “SUNBIRDS” by BOCrew (c) copyright 2012 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (3.0) license. Ft: THEDEEPR / THECORNER / feat : FORENSIC /  
Gerald Regan was the premier of Nova Scotia, the founder of a powerful political dynasty, and one of the most prolific sexual predators in Canadian political history. Even after his death last November, few in the establishment are willing to recognize, let alone reckon with, his crimes.  This episode contains graphic depictions of sexual violence and won’t be suitable for all listeners. Featured in this episode: Stephen Kimber, Maggie Rahr To learn more: Aphrodisiac: Sex, Politics, Power and Gerald Regan by Stephen Kimber  “Uncomfortable silence at Province House” in The Coast by Maggie Rahr “The complicated narrative of Gerald Regan” in The Chronicle Herald by Andrea Gunn This show was brought to you by our patrons. Please consider becoming a monthly supporter.  This episode is sponsored by Wealthbar and Audible.    Additional music: “Clean Soul” by Kevin Macleod, “Cylinder Five” by Chris Zabriskie, and “Easy Life” by Lee Rosevere, adapted. "I dunno" by grapes (c) copyright 2008 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (3.0) license. Ft: J Lang, Morusque "SUNBIRDS" by BOCrew (c) copyright 2012 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (3.0) license. Ft: THEDEEPR / THECORNER / feat : FORENSIC /
For 150 years, the Olands have been one of Canada’s most prominent brewing dynasties, the makers of Moosehead Beer. But in the last decade, they’ve made the news for much darker reasons. Richard Oland was murdered in 2011. And police and prosecutors believe that he was killed by his only son.  Featured in this episode: Greg Marquis To learn more: Truth & Honour: The Oland Family Murder Case that Shocked Canada by Greg Marquis Shadow of Doubt: The Trials of Dennis Oland by Bobbi-Jean MacKinnon “Murder and a Maritime dynasty: The Dick Oland case” in Maclean’s by  Nicholas Köhler and Tamsin McMahon. This show was brought to you by our patrons. Please consider becoming a monthly supporter.  This episode is sponsored by Wealthbar and Audible.  Additional music: “Clean Soul” by Kevin Macleod, “Cylinder Five” by Chris Zabriskie, and “Running Water” by Jason Shaw, adapted. I dunno by grapes (c) copyright 2008 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (3.0) license. Ft: J Lang, Morusque
The Desmarais family is by far the most influential Canadian dynasty of the last half-century. But if you don’t live in Quebec, chances are you haven’t even heard of them. Paul Desmarais had Prime Ministers and Premiers in his pocket and billions of dollars at his disposal. He wasn’t just a Laurentian elite; he was the Laurentian emperor.  Featured in this episode: Robin Philpot (Derrière l'État Desmarais: Power) To learn more: Derrière l'État Desmarais: Power by Robin Philpot Rising to Power: Paul Desmarais and Power Corporation by Dave Greber “Chrétien and Bouchard, sitting in a (very expensive) tree” by Martin Patriquin in Macleans’ This show was brought to you by our patrons. Please consider becoming a monthly supporter.  This episode is sponsored by Freshbooks, Leesa and Wealthbar. Additional music: I dunno by grapes (c) copyright 2008 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (3.0) license. Ft: J Lang, Morusque reNovation by airtone (c) copyright 2019 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (3.0) license.  “Lee Rosevere” by A List of Ways to Die, adapted. 
The Sahotas are Vancouver’s most notorious slumlords. For decades they’ve let their buildings rot, leaving their tenants to live in filth and desolation. But the Sahotas are not like any other dynasty you’ve ever heard of. Their story is far stranger, and far darker, than anything you can imagine. Featured in this episode: Jen St. Denis, Christopher Cheung (The Tyee), Sam Dharmapala To learn more: “For low-income residents in Vancouver, a different kind of real estate crisis” by Wendy Stueck and Mike Hager in The Globe and Mail “'Out-of-control' SROs: Everyone wants to help, but no one seems to have the tools” by Denise Ryan in The Vancouver Sun “Room 821” by Crackdown This show was brought to you by our patrons. Please consider becoming a monthly supporter.  This episode is sponsored by Freshbooks, Audible and Wealthbar. Additional music: I dunno by grapes (c) copyright 2008 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (3.0) license. Ft: J Lang, Morusque eighteen pieces (soda) by Soda (c) copyright 2008 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (3.0) license.  SUNBIRDS by BOCrew (c) copyright 2012 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (3.0) license. Ft: THEDEEPR / THECORNER / feat : FORENSIC / “I Am A Man Who Will Fight For You Honor” by Chris Zabriskie, adapted. 
The Rizzutos are Canada’s first family of crime. For decades, they dominated Montreal’s underworld with an iron fist. With the help of corrupt politicians and police officers, the Rizzutos built one of the most fearsome and lucrative criminal enterprises this country has ever seen.  Their reign was long and bloody. But their fall, was even more gruesome. Featured in this episode: Peter Edwards (Toronto Star), Pietro Poletti  To learn more: Business or Blood: Mafia Boss Vito Rizzuto's Last War by Peter Edwards and Antonio Nicaso The Sixth Family: The Collapse of the New York Mafia and the Rise of Vito Rizzuto by Lee Lamothe and Adrian Humphreys “Death of the Don” by CBC’s The Fifth Estate   This show was brought to you by our patrons. Please consider becoming a monthly supporter.  This episode is sponsored by Freshbooks, Leesa and HelloFresh. Additional music: I dunno by grapes (c) copyright 2008 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (3.0) license. Ft: J Lang, Morusque Spheres (Hip Hop Instrumental) by Robbero (c) copyright 2013 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (3.0) license.  “Cylinder Five” by Chris Zabriskie, adapted. 
Canada is a big, interesting, and complicated place and COMMONS is committed to bringing you thoughtfully crafted and illuminating stories that will challenge everything you think you know about this country.  We make a complex scripted podcast that’s unlike anything else available in this country and cover stories from all across the nation. We want to keep doing this work, but we need your support.   This week we’re going to tell you a little bit about the work that goes into making this show and about what’s next for Canadaland. Click here to see we’re hoping to do with your support.
They call themselves the Canadian Kennedys. And they’re one of the most famous political dynasties to ever exist in this country. But the rise of the Ford family has been marred by violence and self-destruction at almost every turn. The story of the Fords is tragic — for them, for everyone who falls into their orbit, and for the people of Toronto. Featured in this episode: Jonathan Goldsbie (Canadaland). CORRECTION [Nov. 18, 2019]: We state in this episode that Rob Ford died in 2014. He died in March of 2016. We regret the error. To learn more: Crazy Town: The Rob Ford Story by Robyn Doolittle The Only Average Guy: Inside the Uncommon World of Rob Ford by John Filion “The Rob Ford Story” by CBC’s The Fifth Estate This show was brought to you by our patrons. Please consider becoming a monthly supporter.  This episode is sponsored by Freshbooks and Audible. Additional music: I dunno by grapes (c) copyright 2008 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (3.0) license. Ft: J Lang, Morusque MILLENNIALS by Analog By Nature (c) copyright 2018 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (3.0) license. Reverie (small theme) by _ghost (c) copyright 2010 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (3.0) license. Ft: Pitx “Unanswered Questions” by Kevin Macleod, adapted. 
For almost a century, the Irving family has run New Brunswick like a personal fiefdom. They own the newspapers, the industry, and, according to some, even the government. So how does a single family come to so thoroughly dominate an entire province? And what happens when that family starts to fracture and split apart at the seams? Featured in this episode: Bruce Livesey (Thieves of Bay Street). To learn more: “Are the Irvings Canada's biggest corporate welfare bums?” by Bruce Livesey in National Observer Irving vs. Irving: Canada's Feuding Billionaires and the Stories They Won't Tell by Jacques Poitras “Irving family's fortunate son explains how he fell into a dark depression, and rose again” by Erin Anderssen” in The Globe and Mail This show was brought to you by our patrons. Please consider becoming a monthly supporter.  This episode is sponsored by Freshbooks and Leesa.  Additional music: I dunno by grapes (c) copyright 2008 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (3.0) license. Ft: J Lang, Morusque “A List of Ways to Die” by Lee Rosevere, “Easy Life” by Lee Rosevere, and “Androids Always Escape” by Chris Zabriskie, adapted.
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Comments (6)

Carson Chiu

sad? LOL no justice in this world, suicidal and still doesn't kill himself like the human garbage he is *sigh*

Oct 1st
Reply

Jon C

The Queen has power and dominion over all the commonwealth land and people. The government of Canada has special permission to excercise her powers within her mandate. The governor general is here not to ensure democracy is upheld but to ensure our laws don't infringe upon the Queens power and also as a reminder that we are her subjects and not free people. I think alot was assumed in this podcast and when incorrect things were suggested by the hosts the political expert they had just said nothing knowing damn well they were way off and pretty naïve in their assumptions.

Sep 19th
Reply

Ryan McKay

What a fascinating and unnerving story!

Jul 21st
Reply

William

J.J. McCullough sounds like an idiot. He is ABOOT. Not a good representative of real conservatives.

May 27th
Reply

Joseph F

really enjoying this season, awesome job!

Dec 1st
Reply

Carlos Valdez

mind

Feb 12th
Reply
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