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Happy Canada Day!

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Yoho National Park in Canada's Rocky Mountains

Canadians celebrate Canada today.

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Saskatchewan

In 1839 the British Parliament began to wonder what to do about the energetic people living in British colonies north of the United States. Parliament asked for recommendations. An unlikely trio provided them.

They were the Earl of Durham (known as 'Radical Jack'), brilliant Charles Buller, and Edward Gibbon Wakefield, who had written about land reform in Australia while languishing in Newgate prison, where he had been sent for eloping with an under-age heiress.

In a blunt report they recommended a union of the colonies with local self-government which would give the people real control over their own destinies. We could use their like today in a Parliament that seems all too willing to cede the destinies of the British people to the European Union, but we digress.

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Parliament Hill, Ottawa. Canada's Constitution and Her Majesty's Government in Canada are modelled after the British Constitution. Image: Wikipedia

Empires are not in the habit of willingly granting self-rule to their people. In 1867, in the British North America Act, Britain did.

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Vancouver

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Under the rule of just laws which protect their property, their freedom and their lives, Canadians have been creating their own destinies ever since. They have created the wealth that comes when people help each other. What once was Dominion Day is now Canada Day. Cheers!

Exploring Canada with Alexander Mackenzie is here. The St Lawrence Seaway is here. Newfoundland is here. Making the invisible visible in Vancouver is here.

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Canada's NEOSS space telescope

In addition to monitoring the Sun's magnetic energy, Canada is building the world’s first space telescope designed to detect and track asteroids as well as satellites. Called NEOSSat (Near Earth Object Surveillance Satellite), this spacecraft will improve surveillance of asteroids that pose a collision hazard with Earth. It builds on Canada’s expertise in compact “microsatellite” design."

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Canada is well-known for its snowy landscapes. Having worked in Mackenzie, BC, we remember the snow piled higher than the houses until May; the roads which were perfectly clear despite daily blizzards, due to Canada's fantastically efficient snow -clearing programme, - men driving ploughs across thousands of wilderness roads; the blistering cold - 20 degrees F. below zero is typical - and the insouciance of Canadians who skied, snowshoed and ice-fished through it; and, finally, the winter stars, a breathtaking sight with millions of stars shining in the frosty night skies so we felt we were standing at the prow of a ship - the Earth - and sailing through star-filled deeps.

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Image: Windsor Star

Canada's banks are strong, and Canadians have kept their loonie clear of the debt swamps. Their economy seems to be weathering the global turmoil. Canadians we've met have been relaxed and kind. The National Post is a fine paper. There are good things going on.

Visiting Canada, The Queen Canadians celebrate Canada todaysaid today -

During my lifetime, I have been a witness to this country for more than half its history since Confederation. I have watched with enormous admiration how Canada has grown and matured while remaining true to its history, its distinctive character, and its values.

This nation has dedicated itself to being a caring home for its own, a sanctuary for others and an example for the world. We have just now seen images of the Canadian forces [on a giant screen], and diplomats and humanitarian workers at work across the globe providing their support and assistance to others in dangerous and hostile circumstances, and earning the respect of us all.

At home, Canadians have many reasons for optimism, even in trying times. The recent success of the Vancouver Olympics was about more than the thrill of the gold medal for Canada’s hockey team. [Crowd cheers].

As well as renewing a sense of common purpose within this country, the Olympics showed to others something of the extraordinary warmth and enthusiasm of the people as Canada welcomed participants and audiences from around the globe.

In many ways, Canada is proudly asserting itself on the international scene and looking to the future with confidence. I wish you all the very happiest Canada Day. God bless you all and God bless Canada.

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