Transit is now on the radar. Everyone is talking about it. Yes, talking! Will we fund transit? How much will it cost? Will it really ever get done? I sense that there are a lot of skeptics; weary of trusting such a bold plan in the hands of politicians. Let’s be honest, we have been here before. We all remember the expansion plan that was pretty much killed by the Mike Harris and the Ontario PC Party. The common sense revolution took hold and since we didn’t have the money it was put on hold. So we got a third of a Sheppard line. However the PC party was not the only government to play with transit. We could have had an entire streetcar / LRT network in Scarborough. Instead we got the RT. What citizens are tired of is talking and fighting over transit. We need action, along with a long-term plan. Provincial and Municipal elections are coming soon. We finally have shovels in the ground. Question is will we fill up the sandbox again just so our grandchildren can continue to talk about it?
The Toronto Catholic District School Board had to pass new guidelines, forcing students to “sing” O’Canada. I just listened to the news and heard students state that they will not sing “O Canada“, or that they were “embarrassed” to sing it. Also heard one say “I will not be singing it because its my right not to”, with a very disturbing tone. How did we get to this point? What happened to our patriotism? Do we care about Canada? It’s only a “Pittance in Time”, to those who fought and died so we could enjoy it. Just saying!
I am not sure why anyone would want to change the speed limit, but we should just leave things as they are and get police to enforce the current law; ensuring that drivers respect the speed. Making the speed limits faster will simply allow those who break the law go faster. Also, if they are too slow, get off the highway. We should also get our politicians to build more roads like the 407 to ease traffic. If there are people who want to pay let them pay.
Note: I do not even think drivers know that trucks are limited to 100 KM. If you cut off a truck and they hit you, guess who walks away.
Speed limits on Ontario’s highways are too low, according to an Oshawa-based group. Stop100.ca is calling on the provincial government to boost existing maximum limits from the current 100 km/h by as much as 30 km/h.
Aerial view of The Cinesphere and surrounding marina at Ontario Place, Toronto. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
MGM is making the pitch to make Toronto a new home for a grand entertainment complex, but are we ready? It seems that both the province and city politicians are running out of ideas to generate funds for the city. It is a worry because often the idea of a casino seems to imply that we have hit rock bottom. Or is it? It’s said that this will be a “entertainment complex”, providing much needed jobs for Torontonians. What does this mean for Niagara Falls or Casinorama? I am not sure, but one thing is certain for Toronto; lack of vision for our future. This is something important and we should let Torontonians decide. Its sad to see the demise of Ontario Place. Question is, how long will it be before the entire Toronto Islands are redeveloped into a massive entertainment behemoth? I imagine developers are already seeing green, and I am not talking about grass.
For this year’s investigation, the APA mystery shoppers visited 20 used car sellers in the Greater Toronto Area. The shoppers were accompanied by an expert mechanic and all visits were recorded on W5’s cameras. The APA shoppers looked for popular vehicles selling at low prices; this year, the most common models shopped were the Honda Fit and Civic, and Toyota Corolla and Matrix. Sellers were evaluated for the accuracy of their representations. Verbal and advertising representations made about the vehicles offered for sale were double checked by the APA’s expert mechanic and by searching in third-party databases.
Two of the misrepresented salvage cars came from Stark Metal and Iron – a wrecking yard. Among the so-called private sellers, four out of seven had advertised five or more cars from the same phone number over a three month period.
One was a licensed dealer who tried to slip the APA shoppers a car with a slipping clutch. One appeared to be a private party, but he concealed the fact that his car was a rebuilt insurance write-off.
Several “private” advertisers contacted by the APA quickly identified themselves as auto dealers over the phone. One “private” advertiser made an appointment to meet the mystery shoppers at a residential address in Thornhill, and showed up with a used Honda Accord sedan sporting a dealer plate. In Ontario, a dealer is not supposed to sell from a residential address.
The APA has discovered that the worst curber cars it shopped this year and in previous investigations shared some common elements:
Selling for a low, often below-market price on websites like Kijiji
Rebuilt wrecks sold by insurance companies to salvage yards and resold at auto auctions (in one case this year, the car was still registered in the name of the auction or a related company when shopped by the APA)
A dealer, recycler, or autobody shop in the background that appears to be working with the curbsider, who is a sort of front person for the selling activity.
The private seller (i.e. curber) can arrange for a safety standards certificate and emissions test for the buyer. In some cases, the curber asked only for a copy of the buyer’s driver’s licence and insurance to complete the sale.
The investigation raised questions about government oversight and the integrity of the salvage rebuilding and re-inspection process; two of the cars shown to the APA shoppers had yet to pass a structural inspection and were still classified as “unfit,” yet they were being shown by private individuals. For one of the cars still classified as “unfit,” the seller’s garage issued the APA shopper a safety standards certificate.
In an update to my previous post on “The Best Sushi in the GTA” I forgot to mention Makimono’s other location in Pickering. In case you are in the Pickering Town Centre area just take a quick walk arcross the street to 1790 Liverpool Road, just north of the 401. It’s also a great location for Sushi in Durham Ontario. The location is sometimes busy during lunch, however it’s also has a great atmosphere and staff. Of course, being that it’s an all-you-can eat location, you may want to leave a lot of room to “expand”. Otherwise you may need to take a quick nap afterwards. We all love good eats and if you have other locations, please be sure to share them with us. Happy eating!
An interesting game of poker is taking place in Ontario and it seems that the Liberals may have the best hand. Who has the most to lose? At the moment it’s the NDP. No one wants an election and I suspect that if one is called you can kiss all of those NDP seats goodbye. Both the NDP and the Tories cannot afford an election at the moment. In a funny sense if the NDP votes against the budget I am sure the Tories will end up having to support it. The Liberals be in the best position if an election is called. So who will blink first?
A fiery St. Patrick’s Day riot took place in London, Ontario; placing them among the new list of world-class cities in the world. All jokes aside I am sure this is not how London wanted to get noticed. Police are now going through video and witness statements; hoping to find those involved. So far 11 people have been arrested and the clean up has begun. It is strange that this would have happened in London Ontario, out of all places. However, it was close to Fanshawe College and it is understood that this was an area waiting to explode. Drinking, students and warm weather seemed to be the toxic mix that turned into an all out riot. Many of the idiotic individuals recorded themselves and spread it through social media. I am assuming the alcoholic mix also makes you not think, but Police will for sure comb through the online videos and pictures that were taken and posted.
The area, around Fleming Drive, is often called a “student ghetto“. With over $100,000 dollars in damages and in light of the rioting, repercussions are on the way. During the police media conference, London Mayor Joe Fontana said the rioters would be held accountable. I am sure that Fanshawe College does not want the association with this riot, nor do London residence. What were they thinking?
Well a historic election has just taken place in Canada. The Bloc was decimated in Quebec, and almost wiped off the map. Newfoundland told Conservatives what to do with themselves. The Greater Toronto Area is painted blue and Toronto has gone NDP Orange. Also, it looks like we have our very first Green member of Parliament. So what went wrong for the Liberals? They took their support for granted. Canadians were looking for change and they did not see it in the Liberals, in Ontario. Yes, there was a lot of vote splitting, however lets be honest. Ontario has been red for a long time. This is a breakthrough for the Conservatives in Ontario. The question is, can they live up to that support?
The G.T.A is an important battleground and they better take note. As for the NDP, they better not take their Quebec support for granted. The Bloc imploded, Liberals were yesterdays news and they did not like the Conservatives. So we are left with the NDP. Jack the time to start working is now. As for the Liberals, there is a lot of soul searching.
However I will offer this advice to all parties. (1) Liberals, you need to go back to your roots. Your party is not dead. I’d rather say that it is in hibernation and healing. Canadian’s have not forgotten you, rather the opposite happened. You forgot them. Remember who you are and what you stand for. Otherwise, what is the point of the Liberal Party. It is time for you to reconnect. (2) NDP you have been given the chance to prove your worth, so do not disappoint. From the people I have spoken to many parked their vote with the NDP. Also, in Ontario, people simply love and trust Jack Layton. It will be important, despite a majority Conservative government, that the NDP choose their battles well and fight for those who voted for them. Less we forget, as often Canadians do! (3) Conservatives fought a simple and straight-forward campaign. You delivered your message and Canadians listened. We are concerned about the economy and trust in that has been given to you. However, do not take that trust for granted. A lot of Canadians still do not trust the Conservative Party and a lot of seats were gained from vote splitting. Be careful how you govern. Canadians are watching. Do not slip to the right with arrogance. As Harper said, keep a steady ship. If you can prove your worth maybe your quality will be remembered. (4) Finally, to Elizabeth May and the Green Party. You have made Canadian history! Despite the media ignoring you, thank you for running and not giving up. The Green Party should be a wake up call to ALL parties. People voted for Elizabeth May and the Greens across Canada. Their ideas and policies should not be ignored! Summed up in Elizabeth May’s own words “amateurs built the ark and professionals built the Titanic”. People are wary in Canada and if the status-quo parties cannot deliver, Canadians may decide someone else can.
Congrats to Prime Minister Harper, who has finally gotten a majority government for the Conservative Party. We will all watch, wait and see what policies are implemented and what happens in the next Parliament. See you in 2015!