Posts Tagged ‘Toronto’

Toronto the Not in a Death Spiral

October 9th, 2009

Running an operating deficit of $500M, with a $460M sick day liability to employees after a strike to solve that one problem, the City of Toronto has found $30,000 for a poet laureate.

I won’t go into detail all that’s wrong with this picture, Marni Soupcoff has done the job of deconstructing this lunacy. Instead, let me offer a conversational bon mot from Dionne Brand, Toronto’s new poet laureate:

Toronto… “in its multiplicity … is constantly rich and surprising. I’ve written this about it in thirsty — that wild waiting at traffic lights off the end of the world, where nothing is simple, nothing, in the city there is no simple love or simple fidelity, the heart is slippery.”

Why do I get the feeling I haven’t written the last of Ms. Brand?

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Toronto the Not in a Death Spiral

September 10th, 2009
Comments Off on Toronto the Not in a Death Spiral

After six years of hard-left winger David Miller’s reign, there is signs that the people of Toronto are looking for some change.   So who do they get coming to the plate?toronto

Provincial cabinet minister George Smitherman, from the leftern most reaches of the Liberal Party.

One question for George Smitherman: what would you have done differently you had been in charge the last six years?

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Let Them Strike

July 9th, 2009

I was in Toronto last week for one of my very seldom visits. While I have read a story or two of the stench of rotting garbage on the streets, the disgusting mess of litter on the sidewalks, I found that not to be true.  jun2409-garbageWas there a slight odour of garbage, left out on a summer day? Certainly, but that’s as expected in a dense metropolis. Garbage will accumulate, and it will offer a distinctive scent if left on the sidewalk for a summer afternoon waiting collection. So no, Toronto wasn’t disgusting just because the public union said it should be so.

Yet I’ve started to hear the old legislate them back to work canard. One hubby and the Mrs. radio show in particular yesterday was pushing for the province to legislate CUPE back to work. Other op-eds are starting to mention, casually, the possibility.

The instinct to force the union back to work usually comes from my side of the political aisle. Conservatives, who tend to dislike the unions anyway, are often quick to say, legislate them back to work. The pressure will come from Conservatives, the NDP will oppose any such motion.

The Toronto inside workers strike is now over two weeks old. In 2002 the provincial government of Ernie Eves legislated Toronto’s striking workers back to work by this time.  Permier Dalton McGuinty, who was then leader of the opposition, led the fight to have them legislated back. In arbitration, the union won a ruling on job security, the main issue in the strike. This time, McGuinty appears to be leaving the strikers alone: in Windsor a similar strike has been ongoing for almost three months.

The Premier is right: let the workers strike. Toronto is not falling apart, in fact they seem to be managing quite well. It is likely the workers were happy to go on strike, fully assuming they would be legislated back after a few weeks, and would then win in arbitration. That’s been the modus operandi for as long as their has been garbage strikes, and it has failed the public good. Let the workers strike, let them learn what we private sector union workers know: once you walk off that job, there’s no guarantee you go back. It is the one reign on unions behaviour and demands. Let the unions action have real consequences, and next time they’ll think twice; next time they’ll consider how many years of sick days they’ll need to bank to make up for the days lost to being on strike.

And here’s some good news for beleaguered Torontonians: as of today it’s that number is one… and counting.

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Toronto the Not in a Death Spiral

June 24th, 2009

Two years ago, almost to the day, I made an off-handed remark about Toronto being in a death spiral. This somewhat offended James at The Progressive Right, who both commented on it, and had his own post.  I let it drop after that, bringing up only once about six months later. In retrospect, I should have made it a series, the way Kate does Not Waiting for the Asteroid or Y2Kyoto. However, never too late as they say:

Toronto the Not in a Death Spiral


The mayor of Toronto this week is refusing to force striking City of Toronto workers to allow members of the public to access the garbage transfer stations, as they are legally obligated to do. Citizens, however, who do not stand in long lines to be graced with the privilege of being allowed their legal right, and leave their garbage say, outside the transfer stations will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.


Addendum: memo to the Toronto Sun: this is not a waffle, this is picking sides and he sided with the law breakers.


Additional: anyone out there know how to add a little swirly effect to the above picture?

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Cambridge Coyotes?

May 6th, 2009

Now that sounds better than the Cambridge Penguins. I was on the NHL to Cambridge kick before the idea became mainstream during the Nashville to Southern Ontario fiasco. But when you overhear something at the gym from “two guys who heard it from a friend, who knows a guy,” you know you have a scoop.

Sadly, however, it appears Jim Balsillie, if he can pry the Coyotes out of Phoenix, will move them to Hamilton. Southern Ontario is a great market, and if you read the two links given, you’ll know

Hespeler Gardens: Future Home of the Cambridge Coyotes?

I believe Cambridge can work: It’s an hour or less from the growth spots – downtown Toronto to London; it’s right along the 401, and RIM owns a parcel of land right at the 401 and Townline; It is outside both Buffalo and Toronto’s 50 mile boundary (just); and the Cambridge Coyotes has a nice alliterative ring to it.

Hamilton on the other hand… lets just say, find me one Hamilton Tiger Cat fan outside of the City of Hamilton. Sorry Hamilton, but Southern Ontario won’t cheer for your team. It will be a Hamilton team, drawing from Burlington to St. Catherines.

As to whether Balsillie will get the Coyotes out of Phoenix, the NHL has been dramatically weakened by the current economic climate. Three teams appear to be in serious trouble, many more hurting. Gary Bettman, for all his bluster, works for the owners. He has already cost them in Nashville. It may be true that the other owners don’t like Balsillie’s style, but sooner rather than later, they’re going to decide they like the colour of his money. It appears, as well, Balsillie has played this one very deftly, possibly opening the NHL to a lawsuit should they decide they don’t want him in the club. The bottom line is, if the bankruptcy judge accepts Balsillie’s offer, the NHL would have trouble turning him down.


Update: via Christian Conservative, sign the petition to make it seven NHL teams in Canada.

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