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As members of the public, we tend to regard our doctors as being all but infallible. Of course, this simply isn’t true. In fact, there are doctors that no member of the public should rely on. A history of misdiagnosis, insensitive handling of patients in distress and unprofessional conduct should signal the end of a medical career, but patients continue to trust doctors who have acquired a very unprofessional reputation. Dr Tenenbaum is an example of such a doctor.

A single visit to the website RateMDs’ demonstrates what one can expect from Tenenbaum. According to patient reviews, this doctor is everything a medical doctor should not be. Look out for these warning signs in any doctors you visit.

Rushed consultations

We all know that if we try to do something in a rush we have a greater chance of making a mistake. If one happens to be a doctor, mistakes could cost patients’ lives. A review of Dr Tenenbaum’s practice reads:

“I used to be a part time paramedic. If I took a patient history and assessment the way he does (curt, hurried, uninterested) none of my patients would have made it to the hospital alive. You have to have the ability to listen to your patients.”

That’s worrying, but if there were only one review like this, one could say that the patient caught the doctor on a bad day. However, this is not the case:

“I felt especially at my last visit, that Dr. Tenenbaum rushed through everything; I was out of his office before 5 minutes were over…”

Another typical review reads:

“Rude, arrogant, over-books his patients to the point that his office should have a revolving door because you’re in one minute and out the next.”

Unpleasant ‘bedside manner’

Being ill is traumatic enough without having to deal with the kind of experience this patient had:

“This Dr is a jerk. He is very abrupt and offensive. I have fibromyalgia so am in severe pain all the time. He gave me no new information and said to exercise religiously and to cut out carbs. He poked me in the stomach and said “You have to lose that”. It was very demeaning and I left crying. I dread having to go back to him.”

And it’s not just the doctor that’s unpleasant:

“Rude man, rude staff and uncaring attitude. Dealing with people is part of this profession. Empathy is important and totally necessary when dealing with very sick people however Dr. Tenenbaum does not know what that word means.”

Even when a colleague springs to his defence, he or she has to admit that the doctor isn’t exactly a nice guy.

“I am a healthcare professional as well, Dr Tenenbaum may not have a great bedside manner…”

And that’s just what his buddies say about him! When a ‘positive’ review kicks off like that, you’ve just had confirmation that you shouldn’t expect any sympathy. That’s probably still acceptable if you can be sure of good medical care, but will you get it? In this case, there is anecdotal evidence that patients should exercise caution.

A poor treatment record

We rely on our doctors to give us the best healthcare advice and to know more about health issues than the man in the street, so this person’s experience is sure to raise an eyebrow:

“When I asked him if walking was a good way to get some exercise in, he told me it was not and that I should do something with more impact. Well, after stupidly following his advice I was left in considerably more pain than before.

Surely you don’t need to be a doctor or a fitness expert to be aware of the risks of high-impact exercise? In addition, most of us know that walking is an excellent form of exercise. One has to wonder what possessed Dr Tenenbaum to give that piece of advice. Once again, we have a multitude of complaints and this time, they refer to ignorance and misdiagnosis. There’s even a lack of respect for patient confidentiality.

“After seeing him a half dozen times, and his misdiagnosis from the beginning, he tells me, as he is escorting me to the front reception, that I now have full-blown RA and will just have to “live with it”. I asked him how long ’till I am unable to walk at all and he announces in a loud voice, in front of everyone in the waiting area, that if I was going to have that kind of negative attitude, I would have to get another doctor…”

Another patient relates that he was referred to the doctor with a case history file. The doctor did not take the time to go through it thoroughly, and the patient had to point out the relevant test results. What if the patient had not been alert enough to do so? Would the correct treatment have been recommended?

Fake positive reviews

Of course, one can never be absolutely certain whether a positive review is fake or not, but there are some potentially suspect reviews on Dr Tenenbaum. In two reviews, the word ‘brusque’ is misspelled as ‘brusk’. There are also two reviews using the slightly unusual phrase “at the top of his field”. Coincidence?

Then there’s a review from a colleague. One’s colleagues don’t usually review one. Interestingly, the ‘doctor’ who wrote the review uses the word ‘manor’ instead of ‘manner’. One is left wondering whether the author is the same person who can’t spell ‘brusque’ and whether they really could be doctor.

In another positive review, a patient claims to be ‘referring all her friends’. This is odd because the doctor in question is a specialist, not a GP. Could ‘all her friends’ have the same medical issues as she does? The reader could be pardoned for suspecting a cover-up.

What can we learn from all this?

    — Find out what other patients are saying about your doctor or specialist. One bad review isn’t necessarily a huge issue, but when the majority of patients appear to have problems, exercise caution.

    — Make sure that your doctor takes his time, is thorough and listens to your concerns.

    — Don’t be intimidated by rudeness or accept it just because it comes from a person in ‘authority’ such as a doctor. You are entitled to courtesy.

    — When in doubt, get a second opinion.

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How Canadian churches are helping their communities cope with the wildfires



As wildfires burn across Canada, churches are finding ways to support their members and the broader community directly impacted by the crisis.

According to the Canadian Interagency Forest Fire Centre, as of June 13, there are 462 active fires across Canada – and 236 of them classified as out of control fires.

Whether it’s through phone calls or donations to community members, here’s how a few churches across Canada are handling active wildfires and the aftermath in their regions.

Westwood Hills, N.S.: St. Nicholas Anglican Church

In Nova Scotia, St. Nicholas Anglican Church and other churches in the area are collecting money for grocery cards to give to families impacted by the Tantallon wildfire. 

Right outside of Halifax, N.S., the Tantallon wildfire destroyed 151 homes. More than 16,000 people evacuated the area due to the fire.

The fire is now considered contained, but Tanya Moxley, the treasurer at St. Nicholas is organizing efforts to get grocery gift cards into the hands of impacted families.

As of June 12, four churches in the area – St. Nicholas, Parish of French Village, St Margaret of Scotland and St John the Evangelist – raised nearly $3,500. The money will be split for families’ groceries between five schools in the area impacted by the wildfire.

Moxley said she felt driven to raise this money after she heard the principal of her child’s school was using his own money to buy groceries for impacted families in their area.

“[For] most of those people who were evacuated, the power was off in their subdivision for three, four or five days,” she said. “Even though they went home and their house was still standing, the power was off and they lost all their groceries.”

Moxley said many people in the area are still “reeling” from the fires. She said the church has an important role to help community members during this time.

“We’re called to feed the hungry and clothe the naked and house the homeless and all that stuff, right? So this is it. This is like where the rubber hits the road.”

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Is it ever OK to steal from a grocery store?



Mythologized in the legend of Robin Hood and lyricized in Les Misérables, it’s a debate as old as time: is it ever permissible to steal food? And if so, under what conditions? Now, amid Canada’s affordability crisis, the dilemma has extended beyond theatrical debate and into grocery stores.

Although the idea that theft is wrong is both a legally enshrined and socially accepted norm, the price of groceries can also feel criminally high to some — industry data shows that grocery stores can lose between $2,000 and $5,000 a week on average from theft. According to Statistics Canada, most grocery item price increases surged by double digits between 2021 and 2022. To no one’s surprise, grocery store theft is reportedly on the rise as a result. And if recent coverage of the issue rings true, some Canadians don’t feel bad about shoplifting. But should they?

Kieran Oberman, an associate professor of philosophy at the London School of Economics and Political Science in the United Kingdom, coined the term “re-distributive theft” in his 2012 paper “Is Theft Wrong?” In simplest terms, redistributive theft is based on the idea that people with too little could ethically take from those who have too much.

“Everybody, when they think about it, accepts that theft is sometimes permissible if you make the case extreme enough,” Oberman tells me over Zoom. “The question is, when exactly is it permissible?”

Almost no one, Oberman argues, believes the current distribution of wealth across the world is just. We have an inkling that theft is bad, but that inequality is too. As more and more Canadians feel the pinch of inflation, grocery store heirs accumulate riches — Loblaw chair and president Galen Weston, for instance, received a 55 percent boost in compensation in 2022, taking in around $8.4 million for the year. Should someone struggling with rising prices feel guilty when they, say, “forget” to scan a bundle of zucchini?
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The homeless refugee crisis in Toronto illustrates Canada’s broken promises



UPDATE 07/18/2023: A coalition of groups arranged a bus to relocate refugees to temporarily stay at a North York church on Monday evening, according to CBC, CP24 and Toronto Star reports.

Canadians live in a time of threadbare morality. Nowhere is this more obvious than in Toronto’s entertainment district, where partygoers delight in spending disposable income while skirting refugees sleeping on sidewalks. The growing pile of luggage at the downtown corner of Peter and Richmond streets resembles the lost baggage section at Pearson airport but is the broken-hearted terminus at the centre of a cruel city.

At the crux of a refugee funding war between the municipal and federal governments are those who have fled persecution for the promise of Canada’s protection. Until June 1, asylum seekers used to arrive at the airport and be sent to Toronto’s Streets to Homes Referral Assessment Centre at 129 Peter St. in search of shelter beds. Now, Toronto’s overcrowded shelter system is closed to these newcomers, so they sleep on the street.

New mayor Olivia Chow pushed the federal government Wednesday for at least $160 million to cope with the surge of refugees in the shelter system. She rightly highlights that refugees are a federal responsibility. In response, the department of Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada points to hundreds of millions in dollars already allocated to cities across Canada through the Interim Housing Assistance Program, while Ontario says it has given nearly $100 million to organizations that support refugees. But these efforts are simply not enough to deliver on Canada’s benevolent promise to the world’s most vulnerable.

The lack of federal generosity and finger-pointing by the city has orchestrated a moral crisis. It’s reminiscent of the crisis south of the border, where Texas governor Greg Abbott keeps bussing migrants to cities located in northern Democratic states. Without the necessary resources, information, and sometimes the language skills needed to navigate the bureaucratic mazes, those who fled turbulent homelands for Canada have become political pawns.

But Torontonians haven’t always been this callous.

In Ireland Park, at Lake Ontario’s edge, five statues of gaunt and grateful refugees gaze at their new home: Toronto circa 1847. These statues honour a time when Toronto, with a population of only 20,000 people, welcomed 38,500 famine-stricken migrants from Ireland. It paralleled the “Come From Away” event of 9/11 in Gander, N.L., where the population doubled overnight, and the people discovered there was indeed more than enough for all. It was a time when the city lived up to its moniker as “Toronto, The Good.”

Now, as a wealthy city of three million people, the city’s residents are tasked with supporting far fewer newcomers. Can we not recognize the absurdity in claiming scarcity?

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