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Times Herald

Somewhere in the house, maybe in a scrapbook, you've got it.  The newspaper clipping from that time you got your name or your picture in the paper.  Chances are it's from the Moose Jaw Times Herald.  Those days are gone.

The Times Herald put it's final paper to bed on Monday.  The sold-out issue hits the streets today.  The local newspaper has been a part of local life for 128 years.

I have so many fond memories from my days as a paperboy delivering the paper to my first real job as a sports reporter a the Times Herald.  I got my start there.  I'm proud to say it.

They had just replaced their typewriters with computer screens and keyboards back in 1983 when I first worked in that dark, ink stained newsroom.  It was great experience and I met some wonderful people.

What strikes me today is the fact the Times Herald not only kept us up-to-date on local happenings, it also recorded local history.  That won't happen from this day forward. 

I'm not sure how we're going to do that now.  That's a shame.

Take the train

By request this morning I'm checking on the CPR's Holiday Train.  I see the Canadian train went through Yorkton, Foam Lake, Wynyard and Saskatoon yesterday as it continues to roll.  We get the US version this year.  It'll come to Regina and Moose Jaw on December 16th.

I'm also reporting on the snow and blowing snow today and warning commuters to allow for some extra time for road conditions and visibility are sure to be issues today, tonight and tomorrow.

And then I wonder if a passenger train commuter service would work between Moose Jaw and Regina.  Oh, I know we folded STC because we were facing $85 in subsidization in the next 5 years.  That wasn't working.  However, I do know there are hundreds of local people who commute between Moose Jaw and Regina daily and I wonder if they might ride a train.  It would certainly be safer in the winter time.

I can see shuttles taking people from the train station to the government buildings and post-secondary institutions and back.

It has been about 27 years since we had a passenger train roll through Moose Jaw and it might not happen again any time soon.  But, mark my words, it will happen again.

Merry Christmas?

Oh, it has begun.  People, Christian people, taking issue with the politically correct people who say that we should say "Happy Holidays" or "Season's Greetings" instead of "Merry Christmas".  You see, the politically correct people don't want to offend anyone.

This has been a debate for years but, just a few years ago, a poll showed over 90% of us in western Canada preferred to say "Merry Christmas" over "Happy Holidays".

Even if you don't celebrate Christmas, there is something special about this time of year.  That same poll found MANY non-Christians participate in Christmas-like activities like spending time with family and friends and giving back to their communities.

I had a young lady ask me the other day if I celebrate Christmas.  I told her I did and I explained how.  When I asked her about her beliefs she told me she belongs to the Hindu religion and they don't really recognize Christmas as a religious tradition BUT, she said, "I celebrate it because I like people and parties."

I don't know about you, but that's the kind of political correctness I like.

Economic Stats

It's December 1st.  Christmas is coming and it seems to me local people are excited about this.  Decorations are up in restaurants and shops, the Christmas music is playing and then I see this:

"Sask small business optimism remains low in November;  almost 1 in 4 businesses planning layoffs"

This is from the Canadian Federation of Independent Business.  They say small business owners' optimism is well below the national average.  They also reveal 23% are planning layoffs and only 10% plan to hire more staff in the next three months.

Only 29% of Saskatchewan businesses say their overall state of business is good.  That number is 42% nationally.  

They blame a number of things for their lack of optimism including tax, regulatory, insurance and wage costs AND "insufficient domestic demand".

It seems to me there's only one way to fix this.  Let's go shopping!

Census

So many numbers and they tell us some things about ourselves here in the best country in the world.  The latest census figures are out. 

We're spending more time in school, working later in life and spending more time in traffic to do it.

More than half of Canada's working population, ages 25 to 64, have degrees or diplomas from a college or university.

We're working longer.  About 20% of seniors over age 65 are in the workforce in Canada.  That's double the rate from 20 years ago.

The numbers also show we're spending more time traveling to get to our jobs with the average commute up to 26 minutes.

I'll bet you have family and friends in the big city who wonder why you're living in Moose Jaw.  You see, they have time to wonder about us...in their cars while they're trying to weave their way through traffic to get to work and back.

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