canada eh?

Morning Brew: Honour Killings, Bike Rental Program, Emergency Council Meeting Agenda, American Tourists

Photo: "Canada.... EH!..." by chewie2008~, member of the blogTO Flickr pool.

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

Did the influence of western culture on his three daughters drive a man, his wife, and son to conspire to kill them and their caregiver (who also happened to be the man's former wife)? The mysterious case of the four women found drowned in a car in the lock in Kingston has investigators and the media speculating that it may have been an "honour killing" after evidence and an email from abroad add suggestions to that effect.

Should Toronto adopt a city-run public bike rental program modeled after BIXI (the one launched in Montreal in the spring), even though the program has demonstrated flaws? Bikes are pricey ($2000 each!?) and vandalism and theft have been observed.

Swine flu is expected to have a major second wave, and the cooler fall and winter flu seasons may be unlike any we've ever seen (if what's going on in South America, for example, is any indication). School boards are working on plans for shutdowns should the need arise.

Travel to Canada by American tourists is down in some places, with blame placed in part on the recently imposed need for a passport for travel between the two countries. Some B&Bs in Niagara are seeing far less visitors, and $3 T-shirt sales on Yonge Street are likely dropping off too. Recent stats show that 56% of Canadians hold passports, while prior to the passport requirement just 30% of Americans held passports.

The probe investigating accusations of animal suffering at the Toronto Humane Society has been extended, and some continue to insist that the OSPCA's push for the probe is politically motivated. While I can imagine that a high volume of animals in need, coupled by low resources to deal with them, would result in deficiencies, I can't see the Humane Society being staffed by people that are intentionally cruel and abusive to animals.

And the mayor has finally called an emergency city council meeting for early August. The agenda looks daunting and is mostly aimed at approving funding of all kinds of projects and events. If they plan to address all 60 items on the agenda, how much time do they have to discuss the merits of each?


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