What is happening to Toronto? It’s simple, Toronto is broke! Year’s ago we talked about the hollowing out of Toronto, forcing families to move to the suburbs, such as Mississauga, Brampton, Markham, Pickering, Ajax, Whitby, Oshawa and farther. I am not saying that this is the reason. The majority of jobs are still in Toronto, however what will Toronto look like in 20 years? Yesterday Rob Ford said “he is all business”, and he will entertain any business idea. I am not sure if Torontonians would have supported Ford Nation if they knew what the vision was for Toronto. This is definitely not in the same scope of David Miller. As a mayor he seemed to have a different vision for the city. The question is what happened to the debate over these ideas? I am starting to hear rumblings of dissatisfied voters in Scarborough and other parts of the city. Sure, I am not taking stock from a large base, but these are individuals who were stark supporters of Rob Ford coming in to clean house.
Toronto Residents: This city is headed for a disaster of biblical proportions. Mayor: What do you mean, “biblical”? Toronto Residents: Fire and brimstone coming down from the skies over Toronto! The Don river and Lake Ontario boiling! Forty years of darkness! Earthquakes, volcanoes…Mel Lastman rising back to power! Human cooperation, politicians actually working together… mass hysteria!
We warned you during the election that the numbers did not make sense. As with others in the past who promised no deficits it seems that Harper has retracted on what he said during the election. Flip-flop? We focused so much on the Green Shift that other issues were put to the side. Now we are stuck with this situation. Are Canadians prepared for deep cuts to funding? Show me the money!
LES PERREAUX , KAREN HOWLETT , GLORIA GALLOWAY and BRIAN LAGHI
With reports from Joe Friesen in Toronto and Ian Bailey in Vancouver
October 18, 2008
QUEBEC, TORONTO, OTTAWA — Stephen Harper refused yesterday to rule out the possibility of a deficit next year despite his promise during the election campaign that he would not allow one if re-elected.
While the Prime Minister said he intends to maintain a balanced budget this year, he did not say the same for 2009-10.
“I don’t think we’re in a position yet to know all the information in that regard,” Mr. Harper said in Quebec City, where Canada is hosting a summit of French-speaking governments. “It would be premature to speculate on that. I will just say that the Government of Canada will maintain responsible fiscal policies and the Government of Canada will ensure that whatever we do is in the long-run interests of the Canadian economy.”
The government will unveil an updated economic statement this fall. Should revenues be affected by economic turmoil after this year, the Tories would have to choose whether to run a deficit, cut spending or find other revenue sources such as increasing taxes.
BRIAN LAGHI , HEATHER SCOFFIELD and STEVE CHASE AND TARA PERKINS Globe and Mail Update
October 9, 2008 at 10:48 PM EDT
OTTAWA, RICHMOND, B.C. and TORONTO — The federal government is moving to backstop the Canadian banks’ capacity to lend money in an acknowledgment that not even the country’s sturdy banking system is immune to the global financial crisis.
A plan originally earmarked for Friday morning would see the government assume some mortgages currently held by the banks by giving them to the Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corp., a Crown corporation. In turn, the banks might receive CMHC paper – possibly bonds – against which they could use as collateral for their own loans from other banks.
In recent weeks, the big banks have faced a sharp rise in the cost of borrowing money in international markets to cover Canadian mortgages – a situation that puts them at risk of losing ever-increasing amounts of money on one of their core businesses.
Prime Minister Stephen Harper, Finance Minister Jim Flaherty and the banks say no bailout is on the table and the plan falls short of an intervention, but sources told The Globe and Mail Ottawa now recognizes the fast-changing economic landscape requires action to help the banks access cheaper funds to fuel lending.
With the double whammy of the last days of an election combining with the global economic slowdown, the federal government and senior bank executives are hypersensitive. The Conservative Party has been insisting throughout the election campaign that the fundamentals of the economy are strong. But in the past 24 hours a new reality has set in.
Mr. Flaherty, who is expected to be in Washington Friday at an emergency G7 session of finance ministers, had been preparing to make the announcement of a banking plan Thursday, but after word leaked Wednesday night, the plans were delayed, sources say, in an illustration of how important it is for the government to try to control the message.
Pressure from the banks is growing, with executives arguing their sector needs federal help immediately to ease their credit pressure.
Banks want it right now but the Harper government has to reconcile calls for immediate assistance with its insistence the Canadian banking system requires no extraordinary measures.
The Republican vice presidential nominee told supporters in the city of Englewood that Obama “is someone who sees America, it seems, as being so imperfect that he’s palling around with terrorists who would target their own country”.
The Alaska Governor was referring to William Ayers, a member of the radical 1960s group the Weathermen who placed bombs at the Pentagon and the Capitol, who supported Obama’s first run for public office in 1995.
The Obama campaign described Palin’s guilt-by-association attack as “desperate and false”.
Republicans have promised to ramp up the rhetoric ahead of the November 4 election in a bid to arrest Senator McCain‘s recent dip in the polls following his role in delays to the $700bn economic bail-out.
On Friday, his top adviser Greg Strimple promised a “very aggressive last 30 days” of campaigning.
“We are looking forward to turning a page on this financial crisis and getting back to discussing Mr Obama’s aggressively liberal record and how he will be too risky for Americans,” he told reporters.
Seeing that Obama was a child at the time of the existence of the Weatherman, and for the “sake” of education, see below some information on who they were. No we are NOT talking about the Taliban, which I am sure Palin would love to link him to. BTW – Who is running for president McCain or Palin? What if we said “John McCain is a terrorist”, he name is similar to Timothy McVeigh (OKC bomber). Let’s round up all those people that look like McCain and McVeigh and send them to Gitmo Bay. Do you see how ignorant you can be? This comment is directed at the core Republican base which believe the innuendo (not all). The hope to attract new voters? I don’t know if it will work. I would hope that the voters would be more thoughtful. I am certain Palin never heard of Ayers before being provided the talking point of the day since she doesn’t read newspapers. There is another high-ranking republican that doesn’t read much. It is obvious that the McCain campaign is desperate and will do or say anything to take away attention from the fact that they do not have any plans to get Americans out of the mess their party has created. Americans want to know who plans to help them stay in or get a home, put food on the table, save their jobs and stop the warmongering.
The Weathermen: Background and formation
The group emerged from the campus-based opposition to the Vietnam War, as well as the Civil Rights Movements of the late 1960s. During this time, United States military action in Southeast Asia, especially in Vietnam, escalated. In the U.S., the anti-war sentiment was particularly pronounced during the 1968 U.S. presidential election.
The origins of the Weathermen can be traced to the collapse and fragmentation of the Students for a Democratic Society. We petitioned, we demonstrated, we sat in!
Has the so-called Prosperity gospel turned its followers into some of the most willing participants — and hence, victims — of the current financial crisis? That’s what a scholar of the fast-growing brand of Pentecostal Christianity believes. While researching a book on black televangelism, says Jonathan Walton, a religion professor at the University of California at Riverside, he realized that Prosperity’s central promise — that God will “make a way” for poor people to enjoy the better things in life — had developed an additional, dangerous expression during the subprime-lending boom. Walton says that this encouraged congregants who got dicey mortgages to believe “God caused the bank to ignore my credit score and blessed me with my first house.” The results, he says, “were disastrous, because they pretty much turned parishioners into prey for greedy brokers.”
Others think he may be right. Says Anthea Butler, an expert in Pentecostalism at the University of Rochester in New York: “The pastor’s not gonna say, ‘Go down to Wachovia and get a loan,’ but I have heard, ‘Even if you have a poor credit rating, God can still bless you — if you put some faith out there [that is, make a big donation to the church], you’ll get that house or that car or that apartment.’ ” Adds J. Lee Grady, editor of the magazine Charisma: “It definitely goes on, that a preacher might say, ‘If you give this offering, God will give you a house.’ And if they did get the house, people did think that it was an answer to prayer, when in fact it was really bad banking policy.” If so, the situation offers a look at how a native-born faith built partially on American economic optimism entered into a toxic symbiosis with a pathological market.
Although a type of Pentecostalism, Prosperity theology adds a distinctive layer of supernatural positive thinking. Adherents will reap rewards if they prove their faith to God by contributing heavily to their churches, remaining mentally and verbally upbeat and concentrating on divine promises of worldly bounty supposedly strewn throughout the Bible. Critics call it a thinly disguised pastor-enrichment scam. Other experts, like Walton, note that for all its faults, the theology can empower people who have been taught to see themselves as financially or even culturally useless to feel they are “worthy of having more and doing more and being more.” In some cases the philosophy has matured with its practitioners, encouraging good financial habits and entrepreneurship.
But Walton suggests that a decade’s worth of ever easier credit acted like a drug in Prosperity’s bloodstream. “The economic boom ’90s and financial overextensions of the new millennium contributed to the success of the Prosperity message,” he wrote recently. And not positively. “Narratives of how ‘God blessed me with my first house despite my credit’ were common. Sermons declaring ‘It’s your season to overflow’ supplanted messages of economic sobriety,” and “little attention was paid to … the dangers of using one’s home equity as an ATM to subsidize cars, clothes and vacations.”
With the bubble burst, Walton and Butler assume that Prosperity congregants have taken a disproportionate hit, and they are curious as to how their churches will respond. Butler thinks some of the flashier ministries will shrink along with their congregants’ fortunes. Says Walton: “You would think that the current economic conditions would undercut their theology.” But he predicts they will persevere, since God’s earthly largesse is just as attractive when one is behind the economic eight ball.
A recent publicly posted testimony by a congregant at the Brownsville Assembly of God, near Pensacola, Fla., seems to confirm his intuition. Brownsville is not even a classic Prosperity congregation — it relies more on the anointing of its pastors than on Scriptural promises of God. But the believer’s note to his minister illustrates how magical thinking can prevail even after the mortgage blade has dropped. “Last Sunday,” it read, “You said if anyone needed a miracle to come up. So I did. I was receiving foreclosure papers, so I asked you to anoint a picture of my home and you did and your wife joined with you in prayer as I cried. I went home feeling something good was going to happen. On Friday the 5th of September I got a phone call from my mortgage company and they came up with a new payment for the next 3 months of only $200. My mortgage is usually $1,020. Praise God for his Mercy & Grace.”
And pray that the credit market doesn’t tighten any further.
A state of the afairs to squash fears amongst citizens in the United States of Amerca is sure to send ripple affects around the world; as we are all intertwined in this financial mess. President George Bush tonight spoke directly to U.S citizens, and candidly explained the situation in America.
Housing prices that were valued more than they were actually worth
Banks that borrowed too much money
The decline in the housing market
Securities became unreliable leaving companies stuck with unsellable products
Banks began holding on to their money and dening credit to the everyday American citizen
President Bush said that the “irresponsible actions of some…bad decisions” is causing “the market is not functioning properly”. He warned that if action is held up by congress “the stock market could drop even more”. We could end up with “more expensive for credit, even with good credit history”. However he was optimistic and said that there is a spirit of cooperation betweens Democrates and Republicans. This bill will commit a large amount of tax payers money. But given the situtation, if the bill is not passed, it will cost more later for the American economy and the world. His key points to the ballout was to (1) remove risk possed by mortgage back securities, (2) protect tax payers and (3) ensure that there will be no winfall for “Wall Street” executives.
George Bush beleives that the plan will solve the financial problem and allow the “flow of credit” to Americans. He beleives that the vast majority of Americians will pay off their mortgages. But what does this mean for the future of America? The first part is to safeguard the financial system. He promised that every savings account will continue to be insured for up to $100, 000. In addition, he said that the laws governing the American financial system are outdated; needing change and modernization. The government should be able to observe, control and ensure that “Wall Street” will never put the system or the American people at risk again. He still beleives that the democratic financial system is the best system one available. His final quote stated that “together we will show the world what kind of country America is”. The world will definately wonder! The question you may ask, if it is the best system, than what makes the U.S different than any other socialist system now that they are essentially owning these companies? Is the problem with America greed? Did they simply learn from history and the depression and wanted to make sure to avoid a global depression?
American Wall Street Greed
One has to wonder, although America is only a portion of the worlds population, they consume the largest amount per-capita basis. Is America’s excess caused by world greed and foreign investment? Is it time for America to learn to live with less? Or is it time for America to embrace a more socialist style of financial system? Has republican or conservative styled economics failed? Or are Western societies just too credit happy, beleiving that they “deserve” to have all of the luxuries of life? Will we ever learn?
We all know the Conservatives are the “rational economic managers,” right? After all, their tax cuts, free trade agreements, and tough-love social policy are all motivated by the need to free the entrepreneurial beast within us, and allow us to pursue our natural proclivity to truck and trade with wild abandon. The productivity of the free market is the common intellectual (or should that be ideological?) thread that unites all the disparate, carefully calculated Conservative policy proposals.
How odd, then, that the record of Canadian productivity growth since the Stephen Harper government came to power is so uniquely awful. StatsCan released their second-quarter productivity numbers on Sept. 10 (http://www.statcan.ca/Daily/English/080910/d080910a.htm). Productivity declined by 0.2%, the third quarterly decline in a row.
Sept. 15 (Bloomberg) — Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc., the fourth-largest U.S. investment bank, succumbed to the subprime mortgage crisis it helped create in the biggest bankruptcy filing in history.
The 158-year-old firm, which survived railroad bankruptcies of the 1800s, the Great Depression in the 1930s and the collapse of Long-Term Capital Management a decade ago, filed a Chapter 11 petition with U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Manhattan today. The collapse of Lehman, which listed more than $613 billion of debt, dwarfs WorldCom Inc.’s insolvency in 2002 and Drexel Burnham Lambert’s failure in 1990.
Lehman was forced into bankruptcy after Barclays Plc and Bank of America Corp. abandoned takeover talks yesterday and the company lost 94 percent of its market value this year. Chief Executive Officer Richard Fuld, who turned the New York-based firm into the biggest underwriter of mortgage-backed securities at the top of the U.S. real estate market, joins his counterparts at Bear Stearns Cos., Merrill Lynch & Co. and more than 10 banks that couldn’t survive this year’s credit crunch.
“There is likely to be a domino effect as other firms and individuals who relied on Lehman for financing feel the effects of its meltdown,” said Charles “Chuck” Tatelbaum, a bankruptcy lawyer with Lauderdale, Florida-based Adorno & Yoss and former editor of the American Bankruptcy Institute Journal. “The whole thing is frankly frightening for the U.S. economy.” read more | digg story
A new poll suggests the Conservatives have solidified a substantial lead over their closest rivals, thanks at least in part to a lack of confidence in Liberal helmsman Stéphane Dion. The Canadian Press Harris-Decima poll, conducted Sept. 10-13, gave the Conservatives 40 per cent support across Canada, followed by the Liberals at 26 per cent.
They cannot ignore us anymore! Toronto can have something to say in this election. However, will we even bother to show up at the polls? This remains to be seen!
Quotes from the Mayor….“We need those permanent investments in infrastructure, we need investments in public transit, we need investments in housing, culture, the environment. And that’s about our country, it’s not just about Toronto,” he said. “I think it shouldn’t be a partisan issue. I think every single party should support the future of Canada…”
“Everything is proceeding as Dalton McGuinty had foreseen”. John Tory was supposed to lead Ontario‘s Progressive Conservatives to certain victory over the “supposed” dark side; however he led them instead to a resounding defeat. Emperor Dalton McGuinty became the province’s first Liberal leader in 70 years to claim a second straight majority government. Albeit, one has to wonder; did John Tory simply not stand a chance against the political dark elements of deception, manipulation and down right Liberal political experience and know how? The Liberal engine is experienced; they knew what the electorate was prepared to talk about and what they did not want to hear. Elections are not for issues because in reality we only like comfort and ease. We like to know that everything is alright and under control. Only an all encompassing “Provincial Empire” can achieve this stability in Ontario and we gladly allowed it. Progressive Conservatives, and others, in Ontario thought that John Tory would have brought ‘A New Hope’ to the “integral deficit” that now exists among politicians; however the imperial forces of the Liberals got their way.
As such, the seasoned Liberals (lets give our due to the Liberals – they know how to run a campaign, like it or not) knew what to do and perhaps, over-confident conservatives thought that they had the upper hand. But with a strong economy and positive outlook, I assure you, the Liberals were quite safe. It did not take much to “scare” Ontarians into voting for the status quo. Now, on radio and media outlets, they are talking about the “real” issues, that were never brought up during the election. Unfortunately, John Tory and the PC party left Ontarians defenseless to it and our journey to the “Liberal Side” was completed! “The Progressive Conservatives and their feeble skills was just no match for the power of the Liberal side of the force! Ontarians allowed our Emperor Dalton to use their own aggressive and hostile feelings to focus on the faith-based school issue; essentially allowing fear and trepidation flow freely. Dalton and the Liberals felt that fear and knew how to use it. You would think that Ontarians would have not allowed one issue to dominate the election, but it did. Our radio and media outlets participated in the mix that focused us all on that one issue. Now that fear, along with hate, has made ‘Emperor McGuinty’ more powerful then we could ever imagine; fulfilling the destiny of a second term.
So now, Ontarians, we selected another path. One that we think is certain, stable and safer, but is it? Dalton led a smart and clean campaign; showing himself on television, always telling Ontarians what he would do. He always said “we can do better” and “there is more work to be done”. Your compassion for him led you to vote overwhelmingly for the Liberals. And those of you who hated the faith-based school funding issue, allowed yourselves to be used by simply not showing up to vote. This will be our undoing and in the end we will pay the price (that’s called taxes, if you haven’t gotten it already…) for our lack of vision!
By: Andy MJ
a.k.a “The G.T.A Patriot
NEWS FLASH: The Imperial House of Commons will no longer be of any concern to Ontarians. We have just received word that the Emperor has dissolved elections permanently. No point anyway since only half of Ontarians bother to get out of there house and vote anyway. The last remnants of the “OldRepublic” of Ontario have been swept away. The regional Mayors, (David Miller and others) now have direct control over their territories, using the template of the “City of Toronto Act”. Fear will keep the locals in line. Hasn’t it always?
P.S. OKAY! I’m having little political fun with my love for Star Wars!