cn tower toronto

Morning Brew: February 10th, 2009

Photo: "Towering backdrop" by BruceK, member of the blogTO Flickr pool.

What's happening in the GTA (and sometimes beyond):

Forecasting suggests that if unemployment continues to slide, Toronto will see as many as 75,000 jobs lost and as many as 20,000 new welfare applicants in the coming year. Even with a large jump in city revenue (it's expected that a 4% property tax hike will be announced in today's city budget announcement), our ability to finance the welfare system is looking bleak.

Toronto police are now saying that on Saturday they caught an impaired driver doing 205km/hr on the Gardiner at Islington. It makes me wonder if this speed freak trying to top the guy that was caught doing 231km/hr on the DVP in January.

The National Post's Toronto blog is reporting a slew of kids-with-guns stories. A bully victim with a gun at a Bloor West Village school, a gun found in a locker in an east end high school, and a loaded 9mm in the hands of couple of boys on the street.

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Only in Ontario would you see a business owner embroiled in an expensive court battle with a medical marijuana smoker who (on the basis of human rights) won the right to smoke weed in the front stoop of the business owner's restaurant, which is now under the threat of losing its liquor license because serving booze to people who are high is against the law. Clearly we need to reform laws so they don't conflict in such fundamental ways.

Everyone's favourite event ticket source, Ticketmaster, is facing a massive class action lawsuit that alleges that the company essentially ripped off consumers. The accusation involves Ticketmaster falsely claiming to be sold out, and redirecting buyers to a subsidiary company (TicketsNow, also owned by Ticketmaster) that sells tickets at jacked up prices. Now if only we could stop third-party ticket brokers from hoarding tickets using speedy software, we might actually have a fair playing field.

Everyone's favourite transit union boss, Bob Kinnear, is calling for a challenger to attempt to unseat him when he's up for re-election in December. Someone, please do step up, and get this guy outta there.

And the TTC is reporting that escalator related injuries and property damage was up in 2008. I can't help but wonder how many of the escalator monster victims were shoelaces? Is the increase due to the removal of walk left/stand right signage?


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