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Morning Brew: prisoners accidentally released, Bombardier Q400 planes inspected, tough steak leads to domestic violence, G20 charges dropped, TTC transit museum moves ahead, Bautista chasing home run record

Posted by Jerrold Litwinenko / August 24, 2010

bautista home runsAll organizations are susceptible to administrative errors now and then, but knowing that several convicted prisoners have been accidentally released from Ontario prisons seem like a major problem worthy of serious scrutiny. In addition to being rather tight-lipped about the number of incidents (after an 16-month wait on a freedom of information request, we now know that the number is 143 over a period of 8 years), the Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services is still withholding information about the nature of the crimes involved, the number that are still at large, and more. Aren't you curious? Is community safety at risk?

Earlier this year, Bombardier discovered an issue with cracking of an engine cover on their model Q400 planes - a problem which in turn required inspection of over 90% of the total fleet. Porter Airlines, operating out of Toronto island, uses the Q400 exclusively, and has stated that they've already done the inspection on their planes and found no problems. This issue appears to be mostly resolved, and won't likely be fuel for the anti-island-airport fire.

A Barrie man is in custody and charged with assault after he allegedly struck his girlfriend with a metal pipe and threw her purse out into the rain. Perhaps more disturbing though is that the violent domestic dispute started after his steak came off the grill and wasn't cooked to order. Yikes!

Several of the 303 people charged during the G20 weekend had their day in the circus court yesterday. Many saw charges dropped outright, others paid $50 to charity to have their charges diverted (with no need for admission of guilt), and others facing more serious accusations had their cases pushed to October. Among those who saw all charges dropped were an accredited National Post photographer (who still hasn't had his camera and photos returned by Toronto police), and Natalie Gray (who was allegedly shot with rubber bullets).

The timing couldn't have been more inopportune. On the same day that a scathing report on customer service within the TTC was released, the commission pushed forward on its plans to build a $5-million transit museum, creating a stir amongst critics and mayoral hopefuls. While most agreed that a museum would be kinda cool to build, they also feel that priorities need to be kept in check.

And Toronto Blue Jays slugger Jose Bautista knocked two out of the park last night in a 3-2 win over the Yankees. He now leads the majors with 40 dingers, and just might surpass the most ever hit in a season by a Jay. The record he's chasing is 47, set by George Bell in 1987.

Photo: "Bautista Blast" by sjgardiner, member of the blogTO Flickr pool.



Bola / August 24, 2010 at 09:01 am
Umm, that photo of the umpire's rump is inappropriate for a family website such as this one.
qwerty / August 24, 2010 at 09:01 am
Every time I hear a guy treating a girl like that, I feel like breaking every bone in the mans body and cutting off his nuts. Am I weird?
John / August 24, 2010 at 09:10 am
Seriously get over the g20 stuff. Everyone got a slap on the wrist. Had they never been sent to court, you'd probably still be complaining.

Had everyone been smarter and done a silent protest and not show up, their point would have been proven.
Paul / August 24, 2010 at 09:19 am
Keep the G20 commentary up. I appreciate it greatly. I never want to forget how our civil liberties were ignored and how a worthless conference was forced down our throats by the Harper Government.
Jess / August 24, 2010 at 09:20 am
Transit museum.. are you kidding me? Why don't we use that money to improve our already crappy transit system, then once we've done that maybe we can consider a museum. I'm sure $5 million would do wonders in fixing up the subway system so we aren't always late for work...
shannon / August 24, 2010 at 09:23 am
I love how people whine about the people who whine about the G20. rofl
TTC FUNTIMES / August 24, 2010 at 09:23 am
Yesterday morning, streetcar running along College. It is a short turning Dundas streetcar:

C*nty driver (as people get on) THIS IS A DUNDAS STREETCAR GOING EAST ALONG DUNDAS (repeats 4 or 5 times)
Tons of people shuffle on only via the front door (back doors closed)
Outside, a passenger bangs on back doors: OPEN THE F'ING DOORS!
TTC driver shrugs to her TTC uniformed buddy sitting in the front seat. She opens the back doors.
Passenger gets on, as do a bunch of others via the back door.
Passenger up at the front who just got on: Excuse me - does this go to the Ex?
Passenger: I asked if this goes to the Ex
Passenger turns to TTC uniformed guy sitting in front seat: Does this go to the Ex?
Sits back down.
Fed up passenger further back in the car: NO THIS DOES NOT GO TO THE EX IT GOES ALONG DUNDAS
Bunch of people who got on via the back door all groan and want to get off
More calamity ensues.
The end.

So we have a c*nty driver, a lazy unhelpful TTC employee, a rude passenger who bangs on the doors, and a whole bunch of stupid passengers who don't bother to read the DUNDAS sign on the streetcar.

Duk replying to a comment from TTC FUNTIMES / August 24, 2010 at 09:32 am
If you're so butthurt, why don't you pick up the phone and call the TTC. Writing about it on some city blog sure as sh!t isn't going to do much about it.

Jerrold replying to a comment from John / August 24, 2010 at 09:34 am
Perhaps you should get over people not getting over the G20. Just a thought.
ArcAngel / August 24, 2010 at 09:34 am
JetsGo (which was the next iteration of Canada 3000 (which was sold to the JetsGo people by the same people who own Porter)) supposedly checked all their planes for micro fractures before they were grounded by Transport Canada and went bankrupt. I'd rather someone else inspect my plane thank you.
TTC FUNTIMES replying to a comment from Duk / August 24, 2010 at 09:41 am
Just sharin' some TTC insanity
If you don't like it, don't read it and get on with your awesome life
Daniel replying to a comment from TTC FUNTIMES / August 24, 2010 at 09:41 am
Oddly enough I've only seen that happen on streetcars. The streetcar is the worst thing the TTC has ever brought to this city. It's horrible for the disabled and people with strollers. It causes way to much traffic and among the other vehicles (buses and subways) streetcars are the dirtiest of them all. Not to mention no A/C. The TTC Proof of Payment (POP) screwed up the streetcar and now everybody expects to get on for free all the time.
Ryan L. replying to a comment from John / August 24, 2010 at 09:50 am
Found out a little while ago that a friend of mine who lives in the area was arrested for walking by the protest area.

This was earlier in the day at King and Spadina, before the crowd started really forming (and before the more famous penning in and mass arrests)

At this point in time there was no real reason to think that intersection should be avoided, and while walking back home from the store he stopped for a few minutes to watch the gathering crowd.

Without any warning an officer grabs him from behind, and picks him up off the ground (not an easy feat given my friend is 6'4"). He thought he was being mugged and couldn't see who grabbed him so he tried to get away. So another officer jumped in to help (at which point he realized what was going on) and they tossed him in the back of an awaiting police van.

To suggest that he should have known better for stopping in the area would be silly. This was hours before the mass arrests in the area and far away from the violence the day before. There were only a few protesters and a few police. The main reason he seemed to be targeted was because he wasn't part of the protest group that was forming. The few people standing around were easier to arrest than it would have been to wade into the group and arrest people. Most of the other people arrested with him just happened to be in the area. None of them were protesters. One was literally just walking by when they were grabbed by police.

Someone had suggested that they were merely being used to show the small, but growing crowd that they were willing to arrest people.

They were all brought to the detention centre, processed, but then very quickly released with all charges dropped.

Does this sound like something reasonable to happen in Canadian society?
kp replying to a comment from qwerty / August 24, 2010 at 09:50 am
no, you're not weird. better than breaking every bone in his body, he should be tossed on the grill and the girlfriend gets to decide when he's done.
Chandra / August 24, 2010 at 10:05 am
Totally happens on streetcars all the time!
Would it have killed the driver to say, "No, I'm sorry, I don't go to the Ex". Perhaps even made the announcement. Simple enough. No feelings hurt, nobody grumpy.
Sometimes the front sign has not been adjusted so you need to ask, sometimes you JUST DON'T KNOW! Not everyone in this freakin' city has every route memorized and not all stops have a map (if the maps made any sense & have streets listed on them). Really is it that painful to help out and create calm? The TTC is a pathetic joke that no one gets.
Re: G20 - done like dinner. Move along.
dc replying to a comment from kp / August 24, 2010 at 10:17 am
Hahaha - excellent response kp, maybe not where we want our juices system to go overall, but one can fantasize...
daniel replying to a comment from Chandra / August 24, 2010 at 10:20 am
As much as the driver should have been polite about it. I do have a pet peeve where people talk to the driver because it just holds up everybody behind them who are trying to get on and ultimately slowing down everybody on the streetcar which will then slow traffic down for the entire city. Amazing how that one person talking to the driver can put this city in a stand still. What people need to learn to do (in order to speed things up) is while you wait for the streetcar, ask some one who is also waiting for the same streetcar. Chances are they can tell if it goes to the EX or not.
agentsmith / August 24, 2010 at 10:25 am
How effing hard is it to keep track of which prisoners are supposed to be released and which aren't? Don't these guys have, you know, prisoner numbers? Libraries keep track of their books better than this.
Mike W replying to a comment from TTC FUNTIMES / August 24, 2010 at 10:48 am
It's so much more dramatic this way.
Gabe / August 24, 2010 at 11:03 am
Transit Museum!!!! The whole Transit System is ancient you can see it everyday, we don't need a museum!
Joe replying to a comment from Paul / August 24, 2010 at 11:05 am
Jacob / August 24, 2010 at 11:41 am
Jose Bautista is doing well for the Jays?

Guess he's gonna be traded soon.
RKMK / August 24, 2010 at 11:46 am
I agree with kp's prescription for that Barrie asshole. Let the punishment fit the crime.

As for everyone who makes snotty comments about "contacting the TTC to be productive" - y'all, been there, done that, they ignore everything you say. At least you can vent on the internet and collectively throw a spotlight on it, because if you listened to the TTC, everything's going swimmingly, they're as modern and organized as a system could possibly be, and all problems lie with the riders.

@ daniel - I agree that long discussions slow things down, but a simple "Is this going to the Ex" can and should be expected to receive a "No, look for a streetcar that displays ____." No need for all the passive aggressive drama and snottiness.
Tricia replying to a comment from RKMK / August 24, 2010 at 12:47 pm
I agree. Why couldn't the driver just answer the damn question? I guess it never occured to the driver that the person asking the question might not be from here.
Greg / August 24, 2010 at 03:00 pm
I think Jose will not only tie, but surpass Bell. To tie it he needs a HR/ 5 games. Very doable. So far this season he's hitting HR/ 3.2 games. He's on pace to hit 51 HR.
Greg / August 24, 2010 at 03:12 pm
Those jerseys are ugly. The new ones are bad, but the early 90s ones were the best.
Dave replying to a comment from John / August 24, 2010 at 03:37 pm
I'll get over the G20 when a full public inquiry is announced, all peaceful protesters are cleared of charges and our leaders are held accountable for violating our Charter rights.

And here's the thing about a silent protest: no one hears it.
KL replying to a comment from Tricia / August 24, 2010 at 03:54 pm
I've seen TTC drivers and collectors adopt the same attitude even after the person asking the question has admitted they aren't from here. I once saw one tell a rider who barely spoke English to "pay attention and read the map outside".
picard102 replying to a comment from Daniel / August 24, 2010 at 04:31 pm
People with strollers can gtfo. They are the biggest waste of space on the TTC.
Too-wat replying to a comment from picard102 / August 24, 2010 at 04:59 pm
Not sure wtf your problem is - oh wait - I get it - you don't have any kids.

Let's revisit your moronic comment in a few years if someone is foolish enough to reproduce with you.

KL replying to a comment from Too-wat / August 24, 2010 at 07:00 pm
What's wrong about what picard102 said?
rubix cube / August 24, 2010 at 08:28 pm
the jays are fucking awesome to watch this year
Too-wat replying to a comment from KL / August 24, 2010 at 08:39 pm
What's wrong with it? It's f@cking stupid, that's what.

Can't wait to hear him ban gym bags and groceries because they take up too much space and impede him from getting to whatever Dooshbag Association meeting he's the headline speaker at.
STU-BEE / August 24, 2010 at 09:14 pm
ahhhhh yeahhh!!!!
DRRROP / August 24, 2010 at 09:18 pm
Laura replying to a comment from picard102 / August 24, 2010 at 09:48 pm
"People with strollers can gtfo. They are the biggest waste of space on the TTC."

so are overweight people that take up two seats and only pay one fare. But nothing you can do about that, its their right.

But telling people with families that they can't use transit is ignorant and plain stupid. Not everyone can afford a car these days and the only way they can get around is the transit, but it sounds like you are out of touch with reality.
Greg / August 24, 2010 at 10:19 pm
Why even take the bus anyways? Suckers. Shouldn't people just take their limousines? Scratch that, helicopters don't have to deal with traffic. Wait, transporters like in Star Trek. Does anyone else have one yet?
moi / August 24, 2010 at 11:11 pm
I'm on the 'no strollers' team as well, at least for the bloody SUV strollers. If you're going to use transit, get a smaller umbrella style one for that purpose. And for the love of G-d, stop parking the damn things right at the front doors. Move back please! One of the biggest and most common delays for any streetcar is people trying to get around you and your kid to get on. And no, at least 90% of the time, it's not because the car is full that the stroller people don't move back. Even the shopping cart people are more likely to be considerate and get out of the way.

Sean / August 25, 2010 at 06:21 am
Remember this... $5 million for a TTC museum. Expect that to go up. Hope Rob Ford will squash that idea like ASAP once he's elected.
KL replying to a comment from Too-wat / August 25, 2010 at 10:18 am
No, he's right. If you can't afford to have a car, but somehow can afford to have kids, your priorities are mixed up. I shouldn't have to put up with your boogery, screaming children in a massive stroller, just so you can save to go out for dinner dates to recapture your lost youth.
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