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Morning Brew: November 4th, 2008

Photo: "_DSC0011-Edit" by ryancouldrey, member of the blogTO Flickr pool.

What's happening in the GTA:

I can't stand how the term "have-not" is so loosely being tossed around to describe the suffering state of Ontario's economy relative to the other provinces. Looking out on the city, it's pretty clear that we're most certainly still "have-lots" - the only difference being that we all just use credit cards when shopping instead of money we actually have. This Christmas, consumer behaviour should be interesting to observe.

Who won the War of 1812, the British or the Americans? Douglas Coupland asserts that he knows the facts, and a new "commemorative" sculpture he's created was unveiled yesterday at a condo near Fort York - which elicited some giggles due to context. High five, Doug.

The City is making moves to crack down of slumlords that don't take care of their properties and tenants. A major building inspection blitz is forthcoming, and next year the city may also pass laws aimed at hitting landlords who aren't compliant where it matters most - their wallets.

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Although 10,000 tonnes of "in-store packaging" are created annually in Toronto, this pales in comparison to the 865,000 tonnes of household waste we generate. That said, a City-commissioned report investigating the ideas of taxing plastic bags and coffee cups and the like is expected to reject such radical proposals and instead recommend that retailers offer small discounts to customers that bring their own bags and cups. So much for stepping up to the plate with revolutionary ideas, eh? In related news, Tim Horton's has unveiled new in-store recycling bins in an effort to divert cups from landfill.

Students at York University are waiting anxiously as the Thursday strike deadline set by TAs and contract faculty fast approaches. I remember York being shut down in the 90's due to labour-related strikes, and also remember the resulting widespread disdain that resulted amongst students. Let's hope we don't see a repeat of that, for the sake of YorkU's reputation.

And finally... have you sorted out your plans for watching tonight's big US election coverage? I'm crossing my fingers on this one... all day.


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