By Colin Campbell - Tuesday, February 5, 2013 - 0 Comments
Gold Rush fans may not want to change the channel just yet
Reality television’s latest obsession is gold. Jungle Gold, Gold Rush, Bering Sea Gold and Gold Fever are all shows documenting miners’ efforts to dig up flakes of the precious metal worth $1,700 an ounce. The last time TV was so caught up in a trend it was in the house-flipping genre (Flip This House, Flip That House), which seemed to hit its peak just before the U.S. housing market crashed. Is there a similar warning sign in the TV gold boom? Does all the mainstream fascination with gold suggest an overinflated interest and price?
Some analysts on Wall Street, at least, seem to think gold’s wild ride may be nearing its end. This week, Morgan Stanley lowered its gold-price forecast for the year by four per cent, to $1,773. Late last year, Goldman Sachs cut its target price for 2013 to $1,800 an ounce from $1,940, citing an improving U.S. economy. “The risk-reward of holding a long gold position is diminishing,” it said.
Gold is the ultimate safe-haven investment and has enjoyed an incredible rise in recent years. A decade ago, gold was worth little more than $300 an ounce. Since 2000, it has gone up every year for 12 years (a record) and in each of the three years after the 2008 crash, gold prices peaked to hit record highs. That gold might be finally losing some of its shine suggests fear of riskier investments may be ebbing. The S&P 500 index last week, for instance, cracked the 1,500 mark for the first time since 2007. Continue…
By Blog of Lists - Tuesday, August 28, 2012 at 4:54 PM - 0 Comments
The Canadian West of the 19th and early 20th centuries was as teeming with villains as its American counterpart. Indeed, many outlaws north of the 49th parallel were fugitive Yanks.
1. Boone Helm: A Kentucky-born marauder lured out west by the California Gold Rush, then forced into British Columbia in the early 1860s after a string of murders from Oregon to Utah, Helm was said to enjoy eating those he killed. He was arrested in Victoria in October 1862 for being of bad character and spent a month on a chain gang repairing streets. The next year he was arrested at Fort Yale on the Fraser River and sent back to Montana where he was hanged in 1864, after complaining that the executioner was taking too long in carrying out his sentence.
2. Brothers Allan, Charles and Archie McLean: The McLean Gang terrorized Kamloops, B.C., in the late 1870s, stealing everything from horses and liquor to ammunition. When the law came after them, the McLeans shot their way through, eventually killing two men, including a police constable. Eventually caught and convicted—the jury took 20 minutes to reach a verdict—they were hanged together in New Westminster in 1881.
3. James Gaddy and Moise Racette: After meeting in a Saskatchewan saloon in the 1880s, they decided to partner together in the horse-thieving business. To seal the deal they got their photograph taken; it would later become their wanted poster. When the Mounties went after the duo, a shootout ensued and a North West Mounted Police constable was killed. Gaddy and Racette were later convicted of murder and sent to the gallows in Regina in 1888.
4. Ernest Cashel: He was from the American Midwest but turned up in Alberta in 1902, a young man noted for his charm. Arrested in Calgary for forgery, he managed to escape, making his way to Lacombe and stealing a horse. Later, a rancher he worked for disappeared, and Cashel, caught after a two-month manhunt, was found wearing the rancher’s clothes. After the man’s body was discovered with a bullet hole in his chest, Cashel was convicted of murder. He escaped after his brother slipped him guns but was soon caught again and hanged in 1904.
5. Bill Miner: Originally from Kentucky and known as the Gentleman Bandit, Miner was reportedly the ﬁrst holdup artist to use the phrase “hands up.” He committed one of Canada’s ﬁrst train robberies in 1904 near Mission, B.C., at the age of 60, then struck a second train outside Kamloops in 1905. When the law closed in on him, Miner tried to shoot his way free but was caught and jailed. He later escaped the penitentiary in New Westminster, ﬂeeing back to the U.S., where stories of his end are varied.
6. Harry Wagner: Named the Flying Dutchman after the famed ghost ship, he was a member of the ruthless Cassidy Gang in Wyoming before travelling northwest in a small ship, darting through the inlets of British Columbia. In March 1913, while robbing a store at Union Bay, Wagner was happened upon by police. One ofﬁcer died in the gunﬁght that ensued, and Wagner escaped, only to be captured later and brought to trial in Nanaimo, B.C. He was hanged on Aug. 28, 1913.
7. Albert Johnson: Better known as the Mad Trapper of Rat River, he triggered a massive manhunt and captured the public’s imagination during the Great Depression after shooting a Mountie in the Yukon. He remained on the run for 48 days, travelling almost 300 km across the frigid Far North, before dying in a shootout in February 1932. His true identity has never been established.
Have you ever wondered which cities have the most bars, smokers, absentee workers and people searching for love? What about how Canada compares to the world in terms of the size of its military, the size of our houses and the number of cars we own? The answers to all those questions, and many more, can be found in the first ever Maclean’s Book of Lists.
Buy your copy of the Maclean’s Book of Lists at the newsstand or order online now.
By Nancy Macdonald - Thursday, September 3, 2009 at 12:20 PM - 4 Comments
For Greenland, global warming spells an era of booming growth
“Cucumbers, lettuce, radish, turnips,” says Buuti Pedersen, ticking off the grown-in-Greenland veggies now available at local supermarkets. For two years, stores have also been stocking home-grown broccoli and potatoes—“bigger, fresher and tastier” than those shipped from Denmark, says the 54-year-old artist, who lives on Ammassalik Island in Greenland’s remote southeast. Since summer now comes earlier and stays longer, Arctic wildﬂowers have become more abundant, sheep have been birthing fatter lambs (and more of them) and cod, which prefer warmer waters, have started appearing off the coast of Greenland—the fastest-warming place on the planet.
While the rest of the world agonizes over climate change, warming is triggering grand dreams on the scantly populated hunk of ice. The polar island, whose capital, Nuuk, barely reaches a population of 15,000, is profoundly rich in mineral wealth—some of it buried deep in ice. Yet, if Arctic waters become free of ice by 2012, as NASA climate scientist Jay Zwally has suggested, there could be a Greenlandic gold rush. Strange as it sounds, some say Greenland could become a vital mining, oil and shipping centre later this century. Continue…